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Home✈️Aircraft🚁HelicopterGasser Model RC HelicoptersOther News  1200 flights in 7 years 2 days
09-25-2004 04:54 AM  15 years ago
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rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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1200 flights in 7 years 2 days
Hey all:

Well I gladly completed my 1200th flight today with my Xcell gas machine. Bought this thing back in 9/97 and today was another milestone completion for me as it paid for itself for the third time (every 400 flights it pays for itself in gas versus nitro savings).

This machine is way too cool and a pleasure to fly. Yeah baby, and cheers to a great machine! Too bad I didn't have a champain bottle to break over the rotor head and celebrate after I landed!

Woo hoo!

-=>Raja.
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09-25-2004 12:29 PM  15 years ago
z11355

rrMaster

New England

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and all on 10oz's of gasoline.

Now THATS efficient.

Congrats on making it to this milestone.
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09-25-2004 12:38 PM  15 years ago
mcatech

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Mount Gambier SA Australia

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Congratulations thats a fairly awesome success
there is a number of full scale machines have not survived 1200 flights
The xcell gasser is a great heli though mine flys beautifully but does not get anywhere near those flight figures based on your success mine should still have like 20 years of service in it LOL
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09-25-2004 06:28 PM  15 years ago
Horas

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Yonkers, NY

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Hey rbort, how about the cost of crashes?? what is the figure of operating a gasser for 7 years and 1200 flights?? I love the efficiency of gassers, that is why i'm getting read of all my glow junk and starting over with a gasser.
Congrats for the 1200 gas tanks.
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09-26-2004 05:34 AM  15 years ago
rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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My record is not great but not bad either
In those 1200 flights, I have had 9 crashes. I am on v10 as you would call it now. Out of those 9 crashes, two of which I was at fault if I remember right. One I lost orientation in the evening and gave the wrong input, the other I tried inverted auto and did the wrong inputs, blew the head speed and fell freefall from tree height.

The rest of them were some sort of failure, from servo, to drive train, to the most recent tail rotor gears stripped. Also one of them was a mid air collision, which by the way I don't consider myself to be at fault as the other pilot flew in my airspace (think funfly - you fly on left, I fly on right type of deal) and that was the most costly one.

To give you figures, its been as cheap as $45 a couple of times.
The average is about $300 ($100 in blades included)
The mid-air cost $800 - $100 of which was a lost servo in the woods.

So, if I collected $3000 in savings to date, I paid $1000 for the heli back in 1997 (no electronics), then the remaining $2000 is paying for crashes still. I'm not in the free and clear (I guess that mid-air set be back), but its certainly been fun flying this thing over the years.

Yes, bigger machines cost more, but the do fly really well and are smooth all around even in wind.

-=>Raja.
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09-26-2004 09:55 AM  15 years ago
DaveThomasPilot

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Apex, NC

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Something to aspire to!
Seems awsesome, especially as it look forward with more than a little concern at tank 4 .

Congratulations,

Dave Thomas
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09-26-2004 02:33 PM  15 years ago
wolfdad

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Southern Maryland

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Pretty dang impressive!!! If you figure 1200 flights at 15 minutes per flight, that totals up to 18,000 minutes or 300 hours. Figuring you paid a total of $3,000 total cash outlay, that works out to $10.00 for every hour of flight time.....not bad, not bad at all! You just can't have this kind of fun for that kind of money!

Hope you have another 1200 flights of fun!!! BTW, 15 minutes per flight is probably pretty low as well.

wolfdad sends......
"There are those who have...and, those who will" IRCHA #2117, AMA #70068, Turbine Waiver #105
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09-26-2004 02:37 PM  15 years ago
z11355

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New England

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15 minutes per flight is probably pretty low as well.
What an understatement.

Just ask us poor folk who have to sit and
wait on the flightline for Raja to 'finish'.

He's the only heli guy I know that regularly
brings a folding chair out when he flies.

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09-26-2004 08:53 PM  15 years ago
murwullambah

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Cheshire UK

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rbort
Congratulations on a fine achievement, can you give me any tips on keeping these gassers in the air, ive had my Pred gasser a few months and it is doing its damnedist to fall apart. Today has been one of the best sessions with the gasser, installed Throttle jockey and it flew like a dream, keep my fingers crossed for the next 11990 flights, Ta Ta for now
Get me out of here
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09-27-2004 04:19 AM  15 years ago
rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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Tips on keeping the gasser in the air
Well, the most obvious answer is, "don't crash!" If you don't these things are pretty much gas and go once setup right.

Next, keep and eye on linkages (no excessive slop), things being tight (tailbox), no mainshaft slop (correct gear mesh).

In general just look the machine over when you wipe it down after a flying day. I also tend to "retire" servos after 250 flights and replace with new ones to avoid that unexpected servo failure. However, now that I'm flying top of the line servos (JR 8311's) since the 1000th flight, I'm not sure if I should retire them in 45 flights. Seems like the better quality servos should last longer, so I'll have to visit that subject when I get there (replace them or not).

What sort of problems are you having with the predator? My friend here just bought one and he is really excited about it. Wanted me to fly it to get my opinion last week. I got to hover it for a couple of minutes, fly around low and slow for a couple more, and then when I went to throttle up it stripped the main gear. There was too much play in the gears and its very possible he didn't set it right. Too bad as I didn't get to put it though the paces and check it out. Maybe next weekend after he's got it fixed.

Today I flew 3 more flights for a total of about 53 minutes, 50 of which were inverted. Yes, I'm trying to work on my inverted flying and I decided this evening to go to the local soccer field and spend some quiet time hovering inverted and trying to fly the heli around turning left and right and getting used to all perspectives of the heli in flight.

Gassers are great machines for this kind of stuff as you get to practice uninterrupted for 20 minutes (on 8oz of fuel mind you) and you don't end up in a cloud of smoke doing so. I still need to work on my right turns and seeing the left side of the heli as its travelling inverted from my left to my right. I'm good now with left turn from my right back to the left, but those right turns are tricky. I can do left turn coordinated circles around myself, right turns I'm looking at the tail going around instead of the left side (heli inverted). I'm also not as agile with the controls yet. Not like upright conform level. In other words I have to decend slowly, drift around slowly, and make small inputs. No quick stops or quick movements which tells me I'm not quite ready to say I'm comfortable yet. I feel like when I first started to fly back in 1991, everything is so hard and you are so nervous. Amazing how you just flip the heli inverted and you take all that you learned and almost start over! Anyhow, I have a concervative style so I learn without pushing myself and I avoid alot of crashes. After all, I want to fly, not speed learn and crash!

Oh yeah, about the chair. z11355 is right, too much standing around with those long flights you discover if you sit down its a bit more relaxing and you get to concentrate on some precision moves. I try to do everything smooth and precise and I find when you are sitting down it seems easier to do so.

Oh yeah, thanks for all the congrats and atta-boys guys, feels good to log some good flights and then tell about it!

-=>Raja.
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09-27-2004 05:05 AM  15 years ago
JKos

rrProfessor

Redondo Beach, CA

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Raja,
Perhaps it would be cool for completeness sake to list what has happened to the heli in the last seven years. Crashes, replaced parts due to wear, etc.

Thanks,
John

EDIT: Hmm, for some reason I did not see your post above in which you did talk about these things. Sorry, I thought I had read everything.
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09-27-2004 03:19 PM  15 years ago
rcnuts

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Millersville, Penna

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Dude, with 1200 flights and 9 crashes, your record is VERY good. Thats 133 flights per crash. My average in 5 years of flying helis is around 65 to 75 flights before a mishap. (that includes failures, mid airs, and dumb thumb) Congrats!!
Harris,
Hooligan, at large
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09-27-2004 03:39 PM  15 years ago
wolfdad

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Southern Maryland

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Hey z11355, I know what you mean!!! My Intrepid can stay up longer than I can.

wolfdad sends....
"There are those who have...and, those who will" IRCHA #2117, AMA #70068, Turbine Waiver #105
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09-27-2004 07:10 PM  15 years ago
rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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Crash record
Rcnuts:

Yeah, my best long streak in-between crashes was about 440 flights only to be ruined by the signal wire on the recently added Air-Alert breaking. Unfortunately for me, I had installed it into the aileron channel instead of the throttle since it went off way too damn quick and on throttle I sometimes found myself landing with it in "lost" mode as I didn't move the throttle much.

Sent it back, got a new replaced one, and now its back into the throttle channel and its best to tolerate its beeps than plug it into a critical control surface!

Jkos, without alot of details here is what I remember about crashes:

1) Futaba 9202 elevator servo failed in a hover, crash landing, minimal damage.
2) flying in the evening, got confused about orientation.
3) failsafe issue, friend on field asked me to turn off failsafe to see if it was the motor or failsafe throttling to idle. Fail safed again but since no throttle to idle, noise was not interrupted and it drifted from a hover into a crash.
4) Failed attempt on inverted auto, blew the head speed and fell to the ground.
5) Mid air crash. Was flying on the right, other pilot came from behind me with both helis in view and hit me. I didn't see him coming as I has my back turned to him.
6) Air alert signal wire broke, lost aileron control and rolled in.
7) Was hovering inverted, tail rotor gears stripped. Lost tail, tried to climb out to flip to upright, couldn't. So I autoed into the tall grass inverted. Minimal damage.
8) Was flying inverted, tried to climb out, main gear to tail rotor gear mesh was not tight enough, it stripped and I ented up autoing in inverted on the dirt road. Caught the tail with the blades, more damage than autoing in inverted into the high grass in 7) above.
9) Was talking to MIT guy while flying (he came to talk to me rather), started talking and not thinking about heli, just flying around. Engine quit for some reason, didn't notice. Next thing you know I have scattered blades. Dropped collective to regain rotor rpms, didn't have enough altitude to do so, ended up with a hard landing on runway with a boom strike.

On yeah, one more now that I'm counting!

10) battery got low, gv-1 throttled back to let me know (failsafe). I didn't remember that I set gv-1 to do so and I thought something is wrong with the engine. Landed, checked needles, fuel flow, did it again. Thought something wrong with gv-1. Turned it off! Hovered and slow circle around the field for a couple of minutes everything ok and then it stated to jump around. I hit throttle hold, it took it luckily, but as I was landing the battery died and the elevator servo decided to pull full back in the last gasp for power. Naturally, it was a crash landing and I ALMOST escaped but NOT! Now I remember the gv-1 settings very well!

Saves:

1) JR 8231 elevator servo failed full back in flight while I was tumbling. Continued to tumbled unwantedly for 7 to 8 more times while franktically trying to figure out what to do when suddenly the heli stopped facing me nose down. I dropped collective and decended in that attitude towards the ground, pull back, didn't work, pull back again, heli moved to nose high position and stopped there (servo stuck), I timed collective to land just as forward speed was gone. Whew!

2) Tail rotor servo Futaba 9402 failed while I was in a tumble to full deflection. Heli started to spin, I hit throttle hold and came down safely with an auto (no driven tail, and I won't get it for this reason).

3) Was hovering inverted tree height when screw holding coil snapped, engine quit. Was able to flip to upright and land safely.

4) Throttle pushrod snapped in half in flight, engine quit as carb is spring loaded. (I leave mine slightly loaded so carb will have a tendancy to close not open if disconnected from servo). I was far and away, but I was able to stretch the glide barely missing the high grass with scattered blades and landing on the edge of the runway.

5) Futaba 9202 elevator servo acted funny in flight (something felt weird like I did something and it didn't respond as expected), so I came in for a landing with minimal servo movements (airplane glide path). Once on the ground, the servo was no longer moving when I moved the stick. I wiggled the horn and it started to move again. Narrowly escaped that one.

-=>Raja.
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09-27-2004 08:08 PM  15 years ago
rcnuts

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Millersville, Penna

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Say what?? One more? Hey dude, your record ist that good anymore! Haw!
Harris,
BTW- I was talking to your buddy, Bruce. My tuned pipe for the g-26 will be shipped soon!
Hooligan, at large
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09-29-2004 12:27 AM  15 years ago
Dr. Fibinotchi

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Sioux Falls SD

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rbort.
Hey I was wondering if you where flying a metal head on your xcell? I dont have the 26 modified as I only have a 23 bloise and cant pull from the power pack you have.

I was inverted today and had my head speed at 1780. No vibration at all. I know this is a little high, but what head speed do you fly at? I dont have the metal blade grips (but want to upgrade to one as I see a little too much flex on hard manuvers even though my dampeners are new and the hard ones.


What roll rate are you using? I am at 6.8 degrees with v paddles and weights the height of your drivers liscense out. Are you even using weights? Just wondering.


Dr. Fibinotchi
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09-29-2004 02:07 PM  15 years ago
rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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Gasser setup
Hi Dr. F:

I'm using the 0844-1 metal head block. I got that pretty much from the beginning almost after talking to some guy in California and he recommended that, the Hanson motor, and a 13 tooth pinion gear the get the motor rpms up a little.

I use the plastic grips, and, if you go to http://www.ronlund.com/ website and look at the plans, basically I have a Fury Expert head. I am using the Pro II paddles with locking screws instead ot the white plastic ones in the plans though. No weights on the flybar, 6 degrees of throw on the ailerons and elevators.

I turn it 1500 rpms in a hover, slow forward flight.
For precision 3d maneuvers I use about 1600 to 1620 rpms. Do everything I can at the slower head speed.
For added speed and agility, I use around 1700 to 1740 rpms.

I used to have it 1500, 1600, 1700, now I bumped it to 1620 and 1740 to experiment with the G26 motor and how it likes to run.

Depending on your flying style, you don't need alot of rotor rpms to get things accomplished. Its just the "need for speed" and wild/wacky flying style that will help with the extra rotor rpms. I tend to want to fly smooth and precise, making all my moves fluid and pleasing to the eye to look at.

-=>Raja.
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09-29-2004 02:50 PM  15 years ago
Dr. Fibinotchi

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Sioux Falls SD

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hey raja.
I will try tomorrow and maybe today with no flybar weights. I flew in 20+ mph winds a couple days ago and it really didnt effect the cyclic when I was flying. Just bobbed like a cork on aproach. This will speed up the cyclic a little.

On tht power thing I will stay at 1720-1740. The engine seems to love that band on hover and in fff. The power I have is just enough to do large funnels with a lot of collective in it. It really starts to bog if I push it much beyond that. I dont know if that is a normal or not on the power. I am at 9 degrees with720 mav's.


Have you ever looked at the flex the blade grips have? I look at mine and it seems you have a pretty good amount of deflection if you lift up on the end of the blades a little compared to other helis I have had. I guess I am not used to that in the blade grips. If I give a little throttle bump in flight you can see the disk rasie more than I am used to in flight compared to the heli. I am not sure if this part of the design or not.

-Cody
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09-29-2004 03:04 PM  15 years ago
rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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Blade flex
Hey Cody:

You can put two 0331 shims on each side of the head to tighten up the flex if you have alot. It can be built with one or two shims and it is a user choice.

As far as blade rpms, sure, you can run 1720 to 1740 no problem. You are bogging probably because you have 720mm blades. I am running 700's now, Bigger disk = bigger load and hence you need to drop your collective to +9, whereas mine is about +10 and a half.

Are you using a G23 or a G26? If you want power, you can use a Hanson G26 and it will noticibly bog less. Also, if you use a hanson tuned pipe, it will speed up at full collective climbouts if you turn off the gv-1. This is with 700mm blades. I haven' tried 720's yet even though I have a set. I need to extend the boom to do so.

-=>Raja.
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09-30-2017 04:47 AM  29 months ago
rbort

rrProfessor

Franklin, MA - USA

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Cruised past 20 years
Wanted to mention that we should all wish the 1005 a belated Happy 20th birthday!! Yes, as of 1 week ago it was 20 years old, crazy stuff!! That's how long I've been flying gassers, and I remember many milestones in her flight count along the way including this post which I dug up this evening...

Funny thing is the fellow from Australia talks about his 1005 lasting him 20 years with the little use that he uses it...and now here I am at 20 years and still flying.

I took a picture of it today in all of its glory, after 3 more logged flights (now over 1300 hours airborne) been good all these years, highly modified since its birth, its evolved like all of us.

Many people in this thread are not even on here any more, but if you are check this out and can you believe its been that long??

-=>Raja.
MA 1005 Hanson 2703D, 4300 flts
Spectra 27 3DMax, 3422 flts
Whiplash V1-2 Hanson 300, 1890 flts
Whiplash V2 Hanson 300, 800 flts
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