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HelicopterAerial Photography and Video › Pancam Processor flight test
10-19-2004 12:47 AM  13 years agoPost 1
jeffscholl

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Whitefish, MT

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http://209.206.185.102/pancamflight.wmv

I was solo for this so I turned on the cammount tx and set it for horizontal and then put it down on a rock. I then flew around rocking the heli back and forth trying to change the horizontal axis (tilt), but after 2 minutes the camera would be pointed straight down. I would then have to walk back to the mount tx and quickly align the tilt on the horizon. (a smarter man would have landed first....oh well....)

I'm using the elevator (8103) for tilt and the ATV's are at 60.
Gear is for gain which is around 55.
Pancam gain is around 60%.

401 delay is around 50...
no clue on the servo...hitec low profile of some flavor I'm guessing

Cheers,
Jeff

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10-19-2004 02:14 AM  13 years agoPost 2
fitenfyr

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Port Orchard,​Washington

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Looked good

I was wondering why it was pointed straight down a few times.
Watched before I read.

Well mine is on order. Guess I better get the gyro and the mount ordered up now.

See what you start.

Jason Stiffey
Fly Fast....Live Slow...

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10-19-2004 02:44 AM  13 years agoPost 3
iflybyu77

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Fort Wayne, IN

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...

Ack! There's snow on that roof! Say it aint so! Please!

Somebody better pay the heat bill! I support global warming!

That video is dang stable really.. impressive!

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10-19-2004 04:06 PM  13 years agoPost 4
peaks view

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City, State

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..

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10-19-2004 04:13 PM  13 years agoPost 5
ELOSSAM

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Es

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Jeff, do you think the camera pointing down was due to gyro drift or due to the different offset for each side. I tested it on mine and didnt notice any drift but need to have finel adjusted the offset pot. ( pot. nr 4) otherway the servo will arrive to one end after some back and forth movements.

Have done also another bench tests with it (still not in flight) With the gyro conected and using using 1:2 gear relation. That seems to be very short relation and the instant servo reaction makes it difficult or non usable when the whole system is not 100% balanced. Angelos proposed 5:1 relation or shorter if faster servo reaction are needed, this way I think 5:1 / 4:1 or may be 3:1 as maximum should be the usable gear relation range.

Another bench test was done fitting the Pan-Cam board to a normal (non HH) gyro. (In this case the gyro needs to have a servo centering pot) The Pan-Cam board makes the normal gyro works close to a HH one.

The last test was done in flight but without any gyro. It was used to controll a normal servo (with its pot inside) from a three position switch. I use one pair of micro-switches at the end each stick (one for focus and trigger, and the other for the camera tilt control) Without the pan-cam board I comonly adjusted it to 0º/45º/90º but now its fully adjustable at any angle, servo travel range and speed.

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10-19-2004 07:08 PM  13 years agoPost 6
jeffscholl

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Whitefish, MT

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Elossom,

I have experimented with the offset, but still noticed the tilt axis creeping down.

Last night I tried a few more ideas.
I have the Tilt ATV's on the Pancam switch set for about 15deg up and 80deg down in relation to the horizon.

If I rotate the mount within this range it works great, however if I rotate that camera mount forward (past the 15deg) mark or backwards (past the 80deg down limit), then the drifting starts to occur.

Another test was to remove the pancam switch, attach the gyro on a fixed portion of the mount (not the part of the mount that tilts) and crank the 401 delay up to 75 and the gyro gain down to 30.
This actually worked really well without any creeping/drifting at all.

But if the camera mount is rotated past the servo ATV travel then it will off set the tilt by how much you over ran.

Ex. 15 deg is the UP limit.
Initialize gyro and tilt is stable at 0 degrees.
Rotate the mount 45deg forward, return to level, and now the tilt is at 30deg down.

Might need to make a video of this since my explanations are starting to make my head hurt.

Cheers,
Jeff

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10-19-2004 07:27 PM  13 years agoPost 7
fitenfyr

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Port Orchard,​Washington

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Interesting

Another test was to remove the pancam switch, attach the gyro on a fixed portion of the mount (not the part of the mount that tilts) and crank the 401 delay up to 75 and the gyro gain down to 30.
So I wonder if that same concept would work on any other axis?

Also what about putting servo reversers and such (as needed) into that system and Y harness all the servos off the board?
Wouldhn't you now have a 2 axis controlled gyro?
Another bench test was done fitting the Pan-Cam board to a normal (non HH) gyro. (In this case the gyro needs to have a servo centering pot) The Pan-Cam board makes the normal gyro works close to a HH one.
SO did it stabilize the movement only or lock onto the target?
Would it control the tilt/roll in a similar fashion to what Jeff was doing?
Also which gyro did you use?


Jeff got the board from Angelos.
I just ordered mine yesterday and he said he was out till the next batch came in. He didn't give me and estimate yet as to when that is.
Nice guy offered to send me one of his own and use a "homebuilt" version. WELL worth the 45.00 shipped to the US. IMO

Jason Stiffey
Fly Fast....Live Slow...

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10-19-2004 09:43 PM  13 years agoPost 8
ELOSSAM

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Es

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SO did it stabilize the movement only or lock onto the target?
If you can stabilize the movement then you will have your target locked, no? that s refered to the pan axis. In case of the tilt one that means only halve of the job. You can be able to keep a constant angle but as soon as the heli starts moving forward or backwards the target will disappear from your field of view . Its a Pan cam unit and not a laser aiming system
Also which gyro did you use?
Tested with a GY401, GYA352 (two axis gyro) and a cheap GWS (non HH).
Would it control the tilt/roll in a similar fashion to what Jeff was doing?
I think so, The pan axis is the less problematic because the way we all build our camera rigs this axis is quite balanced and the servo needs little power to turn it. Tilt axis are sometimes well balanced and requires also low power. As we usually made it using 2:5 to 5:5 gear relations to smooth the servo motion it will be quite easy to make it work here. The roll axis runs on a different way because few systems has it balanced so the servo needs more power and larger gear (that reduce the servo accuracy due to its low speed) . I did a bench test on the roll axis of an airfoil unit and found the servo works fine to one side but jitters when turning to the other (cant remember if it works fine when pushing or pulling) . May be using two servos so when turning to one side one servo pushes and the other pulls can solve the problem.

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10-19-2004 09:46 PM  13 years agoPost 9
fitenfyr

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Port Orchard,​Washington

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Great

Ok that sounds like it is worth trying one of the el cheapo gyros on mine.
I will be using the Helicamsolutions 3x mount so the gear is really big and seems beefy for the roll axis. It is a completely different design than the Airfoil unit so from your description I don't think I will encounter the same problem.
Guess I will just have to try it.
I agree about the laser aiming thing. Not what I was getting at.
Sounds like it will do the job for me.

Jason Stiffey
Fly Fast....Live Slow...

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10-20-2004 05:05 PM  13 years agoPost 10
Angelos

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nr Oxford, OX11, UK

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Jeff,
Nice video first of all.

The gyro module is intended to hold the position of the camera when you do rapid movements thus making the camera man’s job much easier and the video more stable. However it will not indefinitely hold the same orientation so a camera man is needed. CARVEC is the only system I know off that will indefinitely hold the correct tilt angle for the camera as it also has accelerometers and thus it is aware of where vertical is. Anyway, back to my modules…if you think about it, even when you use a 401 on the tail of a helicopter it will eventually drift if you are moving the heli around for a couple of minutes.

The offset adjustment could help improve the response as already mentioned. However, if the camera GoG is significantly over the axis of rotation the camera weigh may be falling forward or back deepening on the camera angle. If this case you may compensate on one side with the offset but things will be twice as bad on the other.

Also you should be aware that when the helicopter is turning the tilt axis will not be completely horizontal. Thus the gyro will measure a small portion of the yaw rotation which couses the camera to eventually tilt down. You verify try this is the house if you hold the helicopter at 30deg sideways. Then rotate in around yourself and watch the camera. If you do any more test flights please let us know and I will try to track down where the drift may be coming from.

As a general comment… the modules are designed to work with HH gyros as you have correctly used. Operation with non-HH as Alvaro mentioned is purely a side effect. I have an idea of why this appears to work but didn’t get the opportunity to try it out.

-Angelos

Spartan RC R&D

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