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Helicopter
e-
Align
T-REX 550 › do you use bec or battery
08-14-2010 05:34 AM  7 years agoPost 21
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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FWIW, I have a somewhat decent multimeter that I purchased from Radio Shack a few years back. One of its many features includes a Max/Min function. I built up a cable to allow me to insert the multimeter between the power source (could be a standard 4-cell flight pack NiMh/Nicad battery pack, or the output of an ESC/BEC).

I set the multimeter to capture DC amps, and turned on the MAX function. I began to randomly (and very quickly) move both sticks all over the place, from stop to stop. The peak current measured during all of this was around 3.4 amps. Next, I grabbed the swashplate (centered in its travel range, at zero degrees pitch), and physically restrained it so that it could not move up or down, and ran the collective to full negative and to full positive. This had the effect of stalling all three cyclic servos while trying to move the swashplate from its current position. Three fully stalled servos ought to be quite a demanding load for any power supply, probably more severe than flying. I was hard-pressed to measure a max current much larger than about 4.5 amps.

I was using an 1800 mah NiMh flight pack, fully charged, then eventually switched over to the output of the CC ICE 100 running off the 6S 4500 mah pack I'd use to fly this heli.

Interesting enough, during all of this testing, the AR7000 receiver LED indicators never once began to flash indicating any hint of an under voltage/brown-out condition.

This same multimeter happens to have an RS-232 serial interface, and came with software to allow me to connect the multimeter to a PC, to allow real-time measurement and capture of DMM data. My next experiment will probably be to hook that up once again to my heli, and capture current plots under some extreme conditions.

These initial experiments would tend to tell me that the ICE 100 BEC is capable of handling the load of this heli and its servos as-is. More to come, I hope.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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08-14-2010 06:14 AM  7 years agoPost 22
xxcysxx

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Baltimore, MD - USA

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Dave, thank you very much for your time and effort to this information.

Tam

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08-14-2010 09:59 AM  7 years agoPost 23
coolice

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Northamptonshire, England

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Hi Dave.

Interesting read of what you found in your tests, 4.5 amps for 3 loaded cyclic servos is quite good in reality but as usual there is other factors to insider.
In flight the 3G flybarless system will add to the load on any BEC as will the tail servo also trying to hold a wandering tail, so I am sure you'd go above 5amps quite easily.

Having said this I don't think this will be a problem as originally I, as are many others still, used the stock Align ESC with 3amp BEC all ok.
However from experience I know that while the CC ICE's BEC is adequate for the job, it's smoothness to deliver current to the flight gear isn't. I was going to use the ICE to power my model but with it set to any voltage other than 5 volts the voltage wasn't smooth and all the servos twitched and the spektrum lights constantly flicked. This indicated to me the switching BEC of the ESC isn't all that good, why I don't know as the CC BEC PRO I have fitted now uses the same switching power supply style yet is perfectly smooth at any voltage.

Ideally it would be good to measure flight loads, is that something you can do maybe? That will be interesting to see from a hard flown 550E.
.

Ian Contessa
Team Robbe SchluterUK
Midland Helicopters

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08-14-2010 06:27 PM  7 years agoPost 24
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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the 3G flybarless system will add to the load on any BEC
But I doubt that no matter what kind of flying, the 3G system can't do any worse than the stall current of three servos. I've considered the rudder servo and its contribution to the mix.

No, I don't think I can strap my RS DMM to the 550 and go fly some hard 3D (thought crossed my mind for at least a second!). Maybe I can track down an Eagletree unit locally that I can borrow...will have to look into that, but don't know of any fliers in the area (even those -- ugh -- plankers) who would own one.

One thing that does concern me about the ICE 100 is the size of the wire used for the ESC to RX link. It looks to be relatively small gauge, I would be hard pressed to say it's even 22 gauge. 24 maybe, 22, dunno.

-----

You know, I have a DPR-50 -- Digital Power Recorder, 50 AMP capacity, that I bought from Vinnie at Just Go Fly several years ago. It's small, weighs a couple of ounces, and hooks in series with the battery using a couple of Deans connectors. A couple of small JR to Deans adapter plugs, I could stuff that into my 550 and go fly the darn thing. Land and dump the results and see what I'm really needing in the way of a power system. I'll have to run an experiment or two to make sure it can monitor lower voltages and currents as accurately as it can motor and motor battery currents.

I guess after spending about $120 to replace what was an adequate ESC that exploded on the ground, I really am not that interested in spending another $70 or so to make this "better" replacement work.

-----

Here's a thought for Patrick and the gang at CC. The ICE ESCs happen to have all sorts of data logging ability. Too bad two of the parameters you CAN'T log and display are voltage to the receiver, and current drawn by the radio. THAT would be some useful information.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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08-15-2010 04:06 AM  7 years agoPost 25
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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Just got back a little while ago from an afternoon of flying. Hot humid, heat index near 105 degrees. But about 5 PM, things cooled down a bit, the clouds vanished, and it was a great evening.

I whipped out my 550 with the ICE 100, and my two battery packs and fired up the heli. It flew fantastic, the BEC performed without a hitch, upon landing, the AR7000 and satellite showed no indication of a brownout, the 3G system performed exceptionally well.

I found my DPR 50, might hook it up later this week, but for now, the ICE 100 BEC appears to be more than adequate for the 550/3G system.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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08-15-2010 08:31 AM  7 years agoPost 26
coolice

rrKey Veteran

Northamptonshire, England

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Hi Dave.

What voltage do you have your CC's BEC set to mate?
.

Ian Contessa
Team Robbe SchluterUK
Midland Helicopters

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08-15-2010 06:34 PM  7 years agoPost 27
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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I think I set it to 5.7, but will have to check. I also don't remember if I turned on the Autorotate feature.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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08-15-2010 10:44 PM  7 years agoPost 28
coolice

rrKey Veteran

Northamptonshire, England

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Hi.

I'm curious to know as my ICE BEC would not run my avionics on the ground let alone in the air at any other voltage than 5 volts.
.

Ian Contessa
Team Robbe SchluterUK
Midland Helicopters

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10-08-2010 02:54 AM  7 years agoPost 29
Terrabit

rrElite Veteran

Seattle, WA - USA

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I still have yet to hear of a single case - FIRST HAND - where an Ice 100's internal bec has failed. Could someone please point me to a thread?

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10-08-2010 11:12 AM  7 years agoPost 30
Ben-T-Spindle

rrProfessor

Central Illinois

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The ICE internal BEC starts to loose voltage at about 3 amps under actual flight conditions. It all depends on your servos, receiver, and how hard you fly. For most 3D flyers with high-powered servos that’s cutting it very close so CC recommends that with 550 size helicopters you up that you use a separate BEC.

Spektrum are especially sensitive to voltage drops so that’s especially important with that brand. I fly Futaba and they are much more tolerant to voltage fluctuations.

I have also found that Western Robotics BEC’s are much more reliable than CC BEC’s so that’s what I would recommend.

... BTS

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Helicopter
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T-REX 550 › do you use bec or battery
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