Sunday, March 22, 2015

Getting Started with the DJI Inspire 1

WooHoo, EastBay-RC has bitten the apple and obtained a DJI Inspire 1.  Prepare yourself (we hope!) for some eye-poppingly gorgeous scenic imagery, and some EastBay-RC style tech notes on the Inspire.

First up, a quick series on getting started with the Inspire.  Everything from out-of-the-box to registration, setup, configuration, and testing.

This should be everything you need to get ready to launch.  And we're working on that series now!


1.  Unboxing
2.  Charging and Powering Up
3.  Connecting and Registration
4.  Attaching the Gimbal
5.  Updating Firmware
6.  Calibrating the Compass
7.  First Dry Run
8.  Second Dry Run
9.  Micro-SD Caution
10. Attaching the Props

Playlist Here!

(sad note: can't figure out how to get the playlist to work!  click the link above to see the entire series.)

Maiden flight:

blogodex = {"toc" : "DJI Inspire 1", "idx" : "EastBay-RC Guide"};

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Taranis D-Series Telemetry: Lightning Version

Here's what you need for Taranis D-Series telemetry setup.  This is the lightning version, focuses on battery voltage and skips what you don't need to know.

Hardware Setup

  • FBVS-01 is the voltage monitoring unit.
  • The documentation is confusing.  You don't need to modify the default power options.
  • FBVS-01 is supplied without connectors.  Attach your own connectors as necessary.
  • One end attaches to the D-Series Rx telemetry port.  The other end attaches to your battery.
  • Comes with a cable, attach it to the Rx.
  • Only need to worry about the two left connectors, ground and positive.
  • You can get rid of the other wires.
  • Final connection:   Battery -- FBVS-01 -- Rx
Telemetry Setup
  • Go the the Telemetry screen of your model setup menu.
  • Set A1 Range to 13.30V.  This monitors Rx voltage.  You probably don't care about this if you're flying electric.
  • Set A2 Range to 19.8V.  We'll cover why this is the right value later.
  • Set the low and critical alarm values.  For 3S, 10.5V and 10V are good.
Audio Voltage
  • In the Special Function menu, set SF1: SB Down, Play Val, A2, 30
  • When you flip switch B down, the current voltage will be announced every 30 seconds.
  • When the voltage drops below the low and critical levels, you will get repeating announcements appropriately.

That's all you need to get it working!

blogodex = {"toc" : "Taranis", "idx" : ["telemetry", "D4R-II"]};

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Hubsan Q4 MicroQuad Review

Our friends over at GearBest sent us one of the new Hubsan H111 Q4 MicroQuads for review.   They've got it up for presale:

(Work in Progress)

It's a really small unit.  The controller seems like it would be too small, but it's actually quite comfortable to hold.  I don't think you could pinch them, though!
Here's the LEDs.  The front LEDs are blue, although they look mostly white on the green mat.  They make the unit pretty visible.
The box is pretty nifty.  It's interesting to see this level of design.
The quad comes mounted on these tabs.  Look at the tab on the front right.  See the long thin piece? Push it down and the unit will slide out of the tabs smoothly.  If you try to push the quad out without moving the long thin piece I think you will end up messing up one of the motor mounts.
The radio is inside the main box.  There's plenty of extra room for batteries, etc.
And the middle section has a storage compartment for the USB powered charging cable and spare props.
The transmitter takes two AAA batteries.  It snaps shut.  There's screw holes in case you want to secure the battery compartment.
The radio come in either mode 1 (right hand throttle) or mode 2 (left hand throttle).  Binding is done by turning the quad on followed by turning the radio on.
The charge cable attaches to the back.  There's a tiny on/off switch right next to it.
The cover pops off.  It comes in five different colors.
the 100 mAh battery has a double-sided sticky pad holding it onto the board.  It comes off with a gentle pull.  Unlike some other nanoquads, the battery is not soldered onto the motherboard but instead attaches with a Micro JST connector.
Here's the board.  Note that the power to the motors goes through the board, and the pads at the end of the arms are labelled positive and negative.

The battery connector is Micro JST style.  I'm hoping that GearBest will carry some, but if not I will make some using the technique here.


(coming soon!)


Concord Model Engineers Minutes, March 2015


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

CALL TO ORDER:  7:33 pm


Monthly meeting, Second Tuesday, 7:30 at Concord Airport Terminal.

Friday Fun Fly, Third Friday, 7:00 - 9:00 pm.
Gym at the Church of the Nazarene, 1650 Ashbury Dr., Concord

Fun Fly this month on March 20.


The treasurer is absent.  As far as we know he has not absconded with the balance.




New member Sam introduced himself to the members who have not met him.  Sam is a senior at Northgate High School and is working on a model plane for his senior project.

If you aren't getting mail from Chuck, send him mail.

A discussion regarding lastest FAA regulations.

Picnic will be on May 16.  Details to be worked out.

Gate code has been changed.






Stephens Aero, Woody.  5A brushed motor.

P30 Squre Eagle, 30'' wingspan, 28'' len, 90g.  Designed by Phillip Hartman, 1977, easy build, good starter.


Gallon of 10% nitro, box of props, BHM Pee Wee Pup, BHM Nova, Zap Glue Set, Miss Stik Park Flyer, Tube Ambroid glue, 2E Square Eagle kits, Charger.


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Two great videos about indoor flying

Donatas posts a practice video for an upcoming F3P competition.  Rule 1: Politely ignore the rules of physics!  We've mentioned this plane before, the 2S Victory designed by Alexey Lantsov.  It's available for sale now, about $600 or so including the custom-built coaxial motor. I have no idea how it's shipped!

The ever-awesome flitetest crew explores the world of F1D indoor free flight.  It's really interesting, and amazing that you can get over 30 minutes from a rubber-powered plane.

blogodex = {"idx" : ["F1D", "F3P", "Flite Test"]};

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Recording Taranis Audio Files

Here's some notes on recording Taranis Audio Files.  It assumes you can (a) download and install software on your computer and (b) see your Taranis SD card.

  • Project Rate (Hz): 32000
  • Audio Track: Mono
  • Sample Format: 16-bit PCM
  • Export Format: WAV (Microsoft) Signed 16-bit PCM
  • Audacity -- Open source, multi-platform recording software.
  • CleanMyDrive - (Mac) Cleans junk files when disk is ejected.  Use this to get rid of the extra files the Mac Finder puts on the SD card.  Some of the filenames are too long and confuse the Taranis.
SD Card Location
  • User sounds go in /SOUNDS/en
  • System sounds go in /SOUNDS/en/system
  • The SD card will show up in the Finder (Mac) or on the Explorer (Windows).
  • If you're on Linux i'm sure you already know how to find it. :)
  • "en" is for English.  I think there's corresponding folders for different languages.

blogodex = {"toc" : "Taranis", "idx" : "audio recording"};