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HelicopterBeginners Corner › FMA Co-pilot - Flight Stabilization System
05-04-2005 07:03 PM  12 years agoPost 21
Harbinger

rrVeteran

alberta

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They have a pcm system out now?

Dark are you using this on a gasser?

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05-05-2005 07:16 AM  12 years agoPost 22
darkfa8

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Brick, NJ - USA

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nope, Hawk Sport...

for gasser applications, they make a Servo Buffer, it's basically a EMI filter, so noise from the gasser ignition system doesn't go through the radio system and cause glitching

- Dan Goldstein
Team Revolectrix

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05-05-2005 11:33 AM  12 years agoPost 23
pwerz

rrNovice

Croydon,Pennsylvania

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Helimonster

You say with sensitivity adjustment all the way up you are fighting the controls .Try turning your dual rates up for the elevator and airelon .
This is recommended to overide copilots corrections
Paul

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05-05-2005 02:13 PM  12 years agoPost 24
darkfa8

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Brick, NJ - USA

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even with DR up, with the flight stabilization set to 100%+ of course you're gonna fight it! The system is proportional, you turn it down if you want more control, or turn it off.

- Dan Goldstein
Team Revolectrix

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05-08-2005 12:48 AM  12 years agoPost 25
darkfa8

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Brick, NJ - USA

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it works, period.

i just got back from the park. flew 4 tanks and on the 2nd tank decided to flip the switch for 100% stabilization... much to my joy, the helicopter stayed level and vertical and I was even able to softly land it and then take off vertically with NO problems. There was a slight 5mph breeze or so..

I have been meticulous with the setup, used a bullseye bubble level and one piece of 1/4 wood I had left over from my flight box drawer dividers, and got the thing dead-on level for the field calibration. Got a #4 out of 10 on the servo clicks, double checked to make sure the control surfaces moved in their proper direction, with no interaction...was good to go.

I'm impressed, I'm happy, my wallet is safer, and it did help my confidence.

I ONLY switched it on to see how it'd react, and if I could land and take off with it on. Otherwise, the rest of the time I flew it was OFF. No problems, my bird came home in one piece and I feel good.

So far, I believe the Co-Pilot system might be the best investment yet to protect my overall investment.

I presume it'd also work well if you have a flame out and are trying to do a auto... Maybe I'll try that next time out

- Dan Goldstein
Team Revolectrix

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05-09-2005 01:37 AM  12 years agoPost 26
arceye

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UK

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My opinion of a co-pilot is quite simple.

If you feel it will give you more confidence in your flying and allows you to progress faster by having it set up in such a way that it can be used as a LAST resort to get out of trouble then go ahead and use it but just don't rely on it to correct everything you do wrong or you will not learn how to correct things yourself.

After all it is in a way similar to the way learners use a heading hold gyro, so they don't have to consentrate on so much at once. After the learning is done then the heading hold gyro becomes a needed tool for the radical 3d moves, as the co-pilot can become a tool for last resort use to save the heli when the pilot has run out of things to do to save a crash.

I am sure you have been told that the latest co-pilot has the ability to correct the heli even from inverted and also bring the heli to be level in the event of radio interference, if that is true then the co-pilot is worth every penny (cent) just to reduce the chances of the possibility of injury to a human, animal or even damage to property in the event of interference.

I have never used a co-pilot so I can't really comment on how good or bad they are in reality but so many people have such great things to say about what they can do I have no reason to doubt them, and I learned the basics of flying with a standard rate gyro ( in fact it was a very old mechanical gyro), but just because I learned that way doesn't mean I would suggest everyone does ( I now use a heading hold gyro), Whatver makes it easier to learn and reduces the initial brain stress while trying to control every motion at the same time sounds like a good idea to me.

Andy


Kasama Head :(
The Blingiest DOWNGRADE a Raptor can have

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05-09-2005 02:49 AM  12 years agoPost 27
mcoccia

rrKey Veteran

Central Jersey

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darkfa8,

I have been interested in this unit. So I can try some new stunts and if I feel uncomfortable with the stunt I can just hit a switch and the heli will level out. I would like to use for nose-in, and inverted stuff.

Let me know.

Your also not far from me and would like to see this in action.


Mark

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05-09-2005 03:37 AM  12 years agoPost 28
HS10

rrApprentice

Elk River, MN

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Started using FS8 today...

Replaced Futaba recevier with an FS8 co-pilot today... With the unit off there is no difference during hover....

I have not flown with the FS8 co-pilot yet because I noticed that on-the-bench the tail rotor drifts to end points and I lose ACVS...

I am a beginner (hover only at this point)....

Any ideas why I get the tail drift???

Logo 14/24 (Agusta 109A-MKII) (MH-6 Little Bird) (OH-58A) Navy - Retired

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05-09-2005 03:47 AM  12 years agoPost 29
darkfa8

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Brick, NJ - USA

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hs10, did this problem exist prior to you installing the co-pilot system?

- Dan Goldstein
Team Revolectrix

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05-09-2005 03:56 AM  12 years agoPost 30
HS10

rrApprentice

Elk River, MN

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No problem with the old Futaba receiver... In fact a flew the Futaba in the morning then installed the FS8 and flew it in the afternoon...

The FS8 co-pilot handles exactly like the Futaba with the FS8 is disabled... I can't tell the difference between receivers...

I want the FS8 as I move forward in training... Moving from hover to "fly-around"... I like the idea of a back-up if I screw-up...

The drift occurs only if a activate the FS8.... Other wise every thing is normal... The thing that really concerns me if lose of AVCS...

Logo 14/24 (Agusta 109A-MKII) (MH-6 Little Bird) (OH-58A) Navy - Retired

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05-09-2005 01:27 PM  12 years agoPost 31
arceye

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UK

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This is only a stap in the dark but maybe a possibility for the problem you are having with the co-pilot switched on.

You say if it is turned off the gyro hass no drift but when the co-pilot is on the gyro has drift ,I am sure there is a part of the avcs gyro that allows you to trim the gyro to the center stick position while the gyro is turned on. ( i think you have to toggle the switch that you use to swap between rate and avcs a few times and the gyro then re-samples the centre stick position).

It may be that the co-pilot reciever in some way changes its signal ( even a very slight change) when it is activated so causing the gyro to think it has a command to turn in 1 way or the other.

As I said it is only a stab in the dark but worth a look into.

Andy


Kasama Head :(
The Blingiest DOWNGRADE a Raptor can have

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05-09-2005 01:55 PM  12 years agoPost 32
Helimonster

rrNovice

La Vernia, Tx. USA

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Pwerz
Thanks for the advice on switching the dual rate on. I will try it the next time I fly my GPH 346.
I received and installed the new FS8 on my Preditor gasser and at first I thought it would be OK. I took off the blades and started it and all the surfaces stayed steady. No glitches. Did a range check and it was ok with engine running. I put the blades back on and got it into a hover with copilot on and it did fine for a while(15 seconds) then glitched badly. It acted like the swash was going around in circles so I set it down with no damage. Then I disconnected the sensor (disabled flight stabilization) and got it back into a hover again but then the throttle and elevator glitched. I set it down and took the copilot off the heli and put my PCM receiver back on.
I could probably shield my ignition wire, call FMA and get advice and probably spend more money on gadgits they might have to fix it and probably will later when I have time. Right now I just want to fly.

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05-09-2005 03:15 PM  12 years agoPost 33
darkfa8

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Brick, NJ - USA

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i had said earlier, and FMA recommends putting a servo buffer/emi filter on the servo wires especially on a gasser...

with the addition of the two infrared sensors, there is more sensitive data being transmitted to the Rx and those ribbon cables and servo wires are not shielded.

not sure what kind of spar plug wire they use on the gassers... but on automobiels the plug wires are made to limit the amount of interference, and even still something people experience gliches/noise from the ignition system.

This stuff is in the instructions and on their website...

- Dan Goldstein
Team Revolectrix

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05-09-2005 09:07 PM  12 years agoPost 34
darkfa8

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Brick, NJ - USA

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nose-in! YAY!

After spending about 40 tanks worth working on tail-in and side-on hovering and moving around... I decided today was the day to do nose-in.

After setting up the field calibration for the Co-Pilot and flying 2 tanks tail-in and side-on to warm up, I set the heli down in the middle of the field. Walked around to it's front and then away from it by about 50' or so, nose into the wind. Wind was brezy, maybe 5-9mph tops.

First, I decided to let the Co-Pilot do it's job so I could get reoriented with how the controls are going to work with the bird looking at me. Switched Co-Pilot on at 100%, spooled up, took off into a 15' hover or so, and experimented with keeping the bird in one spot despite the slight drifting to my right from the wind and all.

When it started to drift off to far, I spun the tail-in and switched off Co-Pilot and brought it back to me and landed. Then started again.

I got to the point where I was taking off nose-in with the Co-Pilot off, working the controls to keep it in one spot and not shoot up too high or drop too low with the variable wind.. when it got away from me, I'd switch Co-Pilot on, and either landed it, or forced the inputs to bring it back to me, or spun the tail around, switch Co-Pilot off and I was able to bring it back.

By my 5th flight I was able to take off nose-in, get into a 8'-10' hover relatively steady, had to switch Co-Pilot on to save me from drifting too much or getting crazy with the attitude, then would switch it off to take over again, and landed nose-in with it off That made my day especially the part about not breaking anything

All in all, I absolutely love this thing. It takes the edge off, takes a bit of the fear out of this, and I'm more willing to try and move forward, with it's assistence at first, and then without.

I honestly do not spend much time on the sim (XTR). I try to get out and fly the real deal as much as possible when weather permits. I'm still learning basics..obviously.

My plan is to get solid control of the heli from all orientations and then when I'm ready to start doing some aerobatics, I will practice on the sim first, then go out and try it on the real deal.

I honestly wish I had had this Co-Pilot from the start. With the right discipline, it will assist you as though your handing your radio over to a experienced pilot to "bring it back" for you so you can get yourself situated again without a crash.

I've owned the Hawk since January, have put nearly 50 flights on it and have had crash damage prolly close to or over $300 since I started flying. For the $175 I paid for this complete system off a RR member, it has paid for itself entirely today

In order for it to do it's job, it has to be installed perfectly, setup perfectly and maintained.. hey, kinda sounds like what you have to do for your heli already.

As for the noise problems and glitches, there are ways to solve that. My machine is mostly a plastic-fantasic whereas these gassers and other high end 60s+ have aluminum or CF conductive frames, they just excasterbate any noise. So, you need FMA's servo buffers (EMI filters), make sure your grounding is all perfect, all wires are neat, good battery power, etc... nothing new, right?

I feel very good and might just call FMA and thank them for such a great product.

- Dan Goldstein
Team Revolectrix

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05-09-2005 10:59 PM  12 years agoPost 35
S76 Mech

rrElite Veteran

Hatboro, Pa.

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Congrats Man !

Hey Nice Job Dan,
Nose-In for me was a huge step in my controlability confidence. Work on slow controlling hovers, then go start on nose to tail and back. Then slow figure 8's.......THEN FLIP IT! LOL

Hey good progress, come fly with me and the guys this weekend, common you know you want to!

Later,
Rick

Gaui Greatness X7, X5, NX4, X3

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05-16-2005 04:39 PM  12 years agoPost 36
Helimonster

rrNovice

La Vernia, Tx. USA

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HS10, if you are bench testing in a garage or building you could be confusing the copilot sensors. Try doing the testing with the heli on the ground where you plan to fly. Do a calibration and see what happens.

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05-21-2005 01:21 PM  12 years agoPost 37
pwerz

rrNovice

Croydon,Pennsylvania

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co -pilot praise

Finally postings that give the copilot lots of praise.You get tired of reading all the posts on guys knocking the copilot saying its a crutch.
I look at it this way what would those same guys do if they didnt have gyros to help them fly.There are a rare few out there that can fly without a gyro but when some one came along and invented the gyro it was designed to make flyin easier and gee it would help prevent crashes which cost money.
I use mine with on and off switch and iam getting to learn both ways little steps at a time just like using my gyro in both modes.I guess some people are afraid of new technology or they figure you gotta pay your dues by crashing a lot.

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05-21-2005 06:08 PM  12 years agoPost 38
HS10

rrApprentice

Elk River, MN

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I have enjoyed the co-pilot

I am a beginner... Still in the hover stage (20 flights so far)...

I have enjoyed working with the co-pilot system... There have been some challenges (setup & learning), but it has been well worth it...

Once I move past hovering I plan to use the co-pilot as a backup to give me a chance to save my Logo 14 from a major crash...

FMA has excellent tech support ny the way... When I had a problem I actually work directly with the designer to work out the problems (NOW THAT IS GREAT CUSTOMER SERVICE!!!)....

Is the airbag in your car a crutch or a safety device???

I think of my co-pilot as an airbag that gives me a CHANCE to avoid a serious crash... The co-pilot is not a "guarantee" but it give you a chance you would normally NOT have... The price of the unit is less then one major crash....

AND - It is fun to play with co-pilot, a real tech toy for sure....


[B]

Logo 14/24 (Agusta 109A-MKII) (MH-6 Little Bird) (OH-58A) Navy - Retired

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06-04-2005 07:13 PM  12 years agoPost 39
gunsmith

rrNovice

Sheridan, Or.

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Been having real problems with FS8CPI co-pilot. Put it on my Raptor 30 with Futaba 9C the problem I am havig is hard left to right gliches. I reinstalled the unit and went through the setup mode twice now carefully following the instructions with no luck. Anyone have any ideas?
Brian

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06-04-2005 07:41 PM  12 years agoPost 40
tchavei

rrProfessor

Portugal

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Use the buffer cable that they sell for fixing the 9C Tx paralell transmiting.


Cheers, Tony


--------------------
"Perfection and patience usually walk side by side..."

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HelicopterBeginners Corner › FMA Co-pilot - Flight Stabilization System
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