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HomeAircraftHelicopterAerial Photography and Video › Yet another Slow Stick For AP Thread
06-24-2007 11:19 PM  11 years agoPost 1
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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Edit: 2/11/09
To all who might be reading this for the first time. I have built so many different Slow Sticks since this thread started that I decided to come back in and edit this so that anyone who wants to build one won't stumble through a build that is obsolete. Please go directly to the link below and start with my post about halfway down the page. Although there is TONS of valuable material in this thread, to save time and energy, please sart there. This will start you off on the right foot on the best build to date, with all the info you will need to build a Killer AP Slow Stick with FPV capability which since I started this thread a couple years ago, IMO is the only way to do AP with a Slow Stick. Here you go. Thanks for dropping by.
http://www.runryder.com/t355276p47/

Kevo

Hey guys,
I wont' go over my build as I would just cover ground that has been cover many times by a lot of you. But a couple months ago after an expensive heli crash, I decided it was time to look at other ways of doing AP. Specifically something that could all but replace my heli for AP. And something WAY cheaper. I Love my heli but I also am sick of working on it and being stressed out on a job when a client is there breathing down my neck during a shoot. Of all the shoots I've done I can't really think of any where I just wasn't stressed to the max for one reason or another. And seeing how this business is suppose to be fun, I was open to just about anything.
I happened upon a few threads here on the Slow Stick and how it was being used for AP and it really peaked my curiousity. I would like to thank Darrel Klassen who got me off my but, and encouraged me to give it a go. He also provided me with a lot of tech info as this was my first electric ANYTHING, but after this project I promise you won't be my last.
I won't bore you with all my build details, with the exception of one HUGE difference mine would look a lot like most of yours. After flying mine twice in a brisk wind, and just about losing my bird altogether when the wind got under one side of the wing and would want to flip it over. This is obviously due to the fact the the rudder is the only steering control the Slow Stick comes with. I viewed this as NOT ACCEPTABLE! The lack of control in any kind of wind due to the lack of ailerons was not an option for me. I took an entire afternoon and installed ailerons on my Slow Stick. The result is stupendous. Absolute control in 15-20 mph winds. Instead of me being controled by the wind, I now have total control over where and when my bird goes and it does it on a dime. This was crucial to me as I can't and won't wait around for the wind to stop blowing. In Alaska, the weather is never "perfect" and if I waited for it to be, I would NEVER fly. I highly reccomend this mod. The difference is incredible.
My Equipment is:
E-Flight Park 480 1020kv Brushless Motor
Castle Creations Phoenix 35 ESC
E-Flight 2100 mah 3s lipos
Futaba T6EXHP Transimitter
Futaba micro servos for all controls except Ailerons. For that I used a s3151
Camera is a Sony DSC-T9
Camera Trigger: Spartan Vision lock. Set up on channel 5 of TX. Flip switch snaps one pic per second.
Camera mount: Paint sticks

I tested the entire rig today with camera onboard. I had no camera person, no video downlink, and NO STRESS! And it was FUN! I mean this thing is like a gliding butterfly. Its absolutley amazing how slow I can fly this thing. And landing is a breeze. Almost like a Harrier. I've gotten to where on landing I slow down to a certain point and then I can slowly apply full elevator, with a tiny bit of throttle, and almost hover land it. These pics are not perfect, I wasn't trying for perfection, I would simply fly by and snap pictures. And so far I think this platform has awesome potential. If I keep working with this platform and get reliable results, I will be using this as my primary AP rig for snaps. Only using my heli as a last resort. I forgot to mention one of the most important aspects of this. If I crash, assuming that I don't damage my camera, my total replacement cost is a whopping $31.00. The last crash I had with my heli? $300.00, so I don't need to tell you the appeal THAT brings to the table. In fact, so cheap is the slowstick, that I ordered two of them, so I'd have and extra for spare parts. So far I haven't even had to borrow anything from the extra one. Moral of the Story? The Slow Stick at least for me has put the "fun" back in AP. I will try to post some pics of my Slow Stick later.

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06-25-2007 03:19 AM  11 years agoPost 2
Disciple4123

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USA

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I am sympathetic with your cause. A light plane will be reliable and easy to fly; I must say that it will never carry an SLR camera, but I get stressed with a helicopter airborne as well, esp the first 2 years. I hope the SS serves you well.

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06-25-2007 05:12 PM  11 years agoPost 3
cranester

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Bogota, Colombia

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Funny I have been thinking about a SS aswell for the same reasons, what do think is the max payload it will carry I am using a Canon A620.

Juan Crane

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06-25-2007 05:31 PM  11 years agoPost 4
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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Hey Cranester,
My camera weighs 5.5 ounces. I'm not sure what the max payload would be. But its like anything else, the more weight you put on, then you need more runway for takeoff and landing. The way mine is now, I hand launch it. I don't even bother putting on the ground for takeoff. I have though, and with the engine I have its off the ground in 6 inches. I can go almsot vertical with it. This being the case I can almost take off anywhere my heli can. As far as landing goes, I can do a tight circle all the way to the ground and almost Harrier it down. It really is cool. But if you start adding to much weight,well I don't know. I went and got a 2 gig card for my camera yesterday. So I can stay up and just let the camera take pictures the entire time if I want.

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06-25-2007 05:36 PM  11 years agoPost 5
lvspark

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Walla Walla

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Might want to get a set of double surface wings. Put those on when it gets windy makes the slowstick slice the wind like it isn't even there.

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06-25-2007 06:08 PM  11 years agoPost 6
cainebean

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USA

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??
Double surface wings?

I put the Magpie wing on my SS.

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06-25-2007 06:17 PM  11 years agoPost 7
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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Like I said above, throw some ailerons on. I'm mean its sweet guys. Wind? What wind? Its awesome.

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06-25-2007 07:49 PM  11 years agoPost 8
lvspark

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Walla Walla

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Yea, magpie wing works great.

Control with ailerons is good, not dissin that at all, (bank and yank is sweet!) but penetration still sucks from the draggy wing. The magpie or other "like" wing used in the wind will still fly slow like the SS wing for taking the pics, but you can get into position faster. On the windy days a person would typically position themselves downwind from the target and have to fly upwind to get into position. This double surface wing just gets you there faster.
Seems to be a little more stable as well, doesn't get bumped around so much.

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06-25-2007 08:05 PM  11 years agoPost 9
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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Whats the build time on a Maggie guys? I liked the SS because on a 3 or 4 hour lazy afternoon you can from start to finish be in the air. If you grind one in just whip out another one and in a few hours your back in the air. The whole kit is 31.00 at Tower Hobbies. That is just cool. As far as AP goes. One of my Realtor Accounts is like "I don't care to much about picture quality because the picture is going to be edited down to a 2 inch photo going into a Real Estate Magazine, or posted on my website". My point is, The camera I have onboard is fine for these kinds of photos. If I need an SLR for something else, well I'll just use my heli. But I think this has potential for a lot of applications.

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06-25-2007 08:18 PM  11 years agoPost 10
lvspark

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Walla Walla

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I did not build the whole Magpie, just the wing.. The wing took a couple hours.

Another good option is http://members.aol.com/alcyonepilot/Slowstick.htm

Either one you use, be sure to re-enforce the root to prevent the rubberbands from crushing the foam.

Some have put depron panels on the bottom of the SS wing for the same effect.

I still like the standard SS airfoil for average days, and use it 90% of the time, it's a great flyer, and does fly slower than the 2 surface wing.

My realators feel the same way as yours.. Only the cops want the high res

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06-25-2007 09:53 PM  11 years agoPost 11
wjw

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Cape Coral, Florida usa

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Photos?
How about some photos of the SS A/P rig.

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06-25-2007 10:01 PM  11 years agoPost 12
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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Dude, I kid you not I'm working on it! My daughter used my other camera for a hike she went on with her church youth group last week, so I go get it from her last night and check it out. The lithium ion battery pack AND the 512k card are history as in gone! I was so steamed last night. Seems my daughter loaned it to some punk on the hike. So I MADE her call him and ask where they were, and of course the punk has no idea. I'm still ticked. Of course we all know who is going to have to pay for that. Its amazing how $100.00 woth of stuff can come up missing and absolutley no one has any idea where it is. ANYWAYS, as soon as I get all that sorted out I promise I will post some pics.

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06-25-2007 10:01 PM  11 years agoPost 13
trackhead

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utah

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Will it fly with a 500 or so gram payload?

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06-25-2007 10:15 PM  11 years agoPost 14
wjw

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Cape Coral, Florida usa

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Kids
Kids are Great arn't they.
All raido gear, gyros and anything with buttons must be elevated and out of reach.
I am buying a lock for my "hobby room" next week.

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06-25-2007 10:26 PM  11 years agoPost 15
Tonic

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Des Moines

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What moter and battery are you guys running on your Slow Sticks?

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06-26-2007 12:42 AM  11 years agoPost 16
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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OK guys, I'm way excited. I just went and did a shoot for a Reatlor. First one with the bad a** Slow stick. I got 32 fantastic pictures. All I did was hand launch my bird and floated above the property for 10 very quiet, RELAXING, no fuel, no stress, no camera man, no video downlink, JUST FUN minutes. The results are just off the hook. Its sooooo much easier to get a far away shot, I mean shots I would NEVER attempt with my heli just for the simple fact that it would put it to far away. O HECK, I'll let the pictures speak for themselves. I am SOLD on this platform for snaps. O yeah, the property is listed for 800k

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06-26-2007 02:03 AM  11 years agoPost 17
cranester

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Bogota, Colombia

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This SS thing is very interesting, these shots are the highest I will risk taking my heli:

I use the FS8 system for stab, but even with that I almost wet my pants doing them, Its just too much stress seeing your heli up so high, for these shots it was just a dot in the sky, I could barely tell its orientation, If something were to go wrong there's just NO way I would be able to regain control, It just too far away too see it.

If I could put a good enough camera on a SS I would be sold imediatly too.

Would 270 grams be too much for one of these planes?

Juan Crane

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06-26-2007 02:05 AM  11 years agoPost 18
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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OK, I remembered a little while ago that my Sony DVD camcorder has a 1.0 megapixel Still camera on it. So I used that to get you guys a few pics of my vicious spy machine. Look at those lines! what fantastic example of craftsmanship! Like my bright orange wing tips? Those are my visual aids and budddy they have worked GREAT and saved my butt already several times as I fly my bird way out there sometimes. Anyways, Like I say, my camera mount is a set of paint sticks from Home Depot. O yeah, they were free. I have it set up so that depending on the wind, I simply rotate the camera to the side that I want to take pictures from. So for example. Today there was a 15 mph wind from the west. This means for the front of the house I rotate the camera to the right side of the SS. I hand launch my bird and within 20 seconds I'm flying parallel to the house against the wind at an almost hover as the wind alows me to do that. For the back side. I simply land my bird. And turn the camera around to the left side of the SS. I repeat the process above only THIS time I'm flying around to the back ot the house All the time flying into the wind. Its so simple and FUN! The once I have a flight pattern down I just do slow circles. I can cover EVERY ANGLE and its WAY easier than my heli.

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06-26-2007 02:22 AM  11 years agoPost 19
Burnt Offering

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Winter Wonder Land, Wasilla Alaska

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Cranester, I am posting a picture I took a couple days ago from my SS. I have no idea what height I'm at. I'm guessing 300 ft. I hand launched my SS, applied full throttle. My SS will go almost vertical with the engine and batteries I'm using I kid you not. Without exageration I reached that altitude in 15 seconds. From launch to picture 15 seconds. Amazing. What is sooooo cool is I get up there and then just shut it off, and it just floats, I mean for a long time. And the best part? I can see exactly what is going on with the SS. All the while I'm in total control and my knees aren't knocking. I simply keep giving it throtlle when it looses altitude and go back up. I really think I could stay up doing that for a half hour or more. All the while just lolly gaggin and snapping pictures. Its awesome. I don't know why but the pictures look like crap on RR. On my computer they are stunning.

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06-26-2007 02:41 AM  11 years agoPost 20
cranester

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Bogota, Colombia

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Sorry edited because I posted in the wrong place

Juan Crane

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