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Returning after 30 years - Hi.


Hexaflexagon

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Hexaflexagon

My grandson was inspired by watching James May's Toy Story program that featured the Slingsby Swallow model glider flight to Lundy Island. His dad reminded him that as a boy he and I had built a r/c glider and the grandson is now desperate to follow suit. So after a lay off of ~30 years I'm back. My original experience as a lad was actually back in the early 60s with carrier wave rubber band escapement rudder only diesel models.

I have a Sanwa Conquest MK II transmitter & receiver and three servos that I bought in 1990 (the invoice says £116.95 which sounds a bit pricey). It's never been used - (it was bought for a new high performance slope soarer I was moving on to after I'd cut my teeth on more forgiving models, but  I've tested it with the servos and it seems OK

Questions

1 Will the sheer age of the transmitter have caused any components (capacitors perhaps) to degrade?

2. I see new systems are 2.4 GHz. Are these significantly better than 34 MHz? If so I may just decide to enter the 21st century, literally, and buy a new set of Tx, Rx and servos. Is it no longer necessary to have plug crystals with different frequencies? 

3. I  notice that some ready built gliders come with just a Transmitter. I had assumed Transmitters needed to be paired with a Receiver. Is that not the case and is stuff standardised to the extent one can mix and match? Similarly what about servos? Are their connections to receivers standard. I'm thinking the subject may be a bit like buying Hi-Fi where it's generally reckoned it's best to mix and match best of breed from different manufacturers.

4. Finally any general advice. I understand needing to register with the CAA but is there anything else I should be aware of. Recommendations as to kit would be useful. I did a lot of non powered slope soaring 30 years ago when I lived in the Peak District but am considering a glider with electric motor as giving more flexibility.

Usual TIA. Please move to the appropriate forum as necessary.

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Nick Jackson

Hi Hexaflexagon (great forum name - hadn't thought about those wriggly miracles for years). Welcome to the forum. To answer your questions:

  1. Don't know. But modern gear is so much more flexible I'd take the plunge if the cost isn't too much of a problem. 35 mHz is still legal and sufficiently rare now that someone else on your frequency is less of a problem than it used to be - but still a potential worry, especially on slopes where there is no pegboard. Not an issue at all with 2.4gHz.
     
  2. I'd go C21. It's great having model memories even if you don't use a lot of fancy stuff initially. Bit of care needed with rx aerial placement and carbon but much less vulnerable to electrical interference. No crystals or spot frequencies - you just bind the individual rx to the individual tx. It works.
     
  3. Basic position is that you stay with the same manufacturer for tx and rx - no you can't just mix and match. (Complications either way - some compatible rx from other manufacturers and multi-protocol gear. On the other hand some big manufacturers have changed protocols so not all their own gear is inter-operable. Don't worry initially - just buy one brand.) Servos are mostly compatible between brands (with or without a bit of filing) unless and until you get quite fancy.
     
  4. Join the BMFA. Join a local club - and buy whatever radio is popular at your club if you'll want any help with a new radio. All modern gear is fine but each brand is programmed differently most of us can only help with the brand we use. Difficult to advise on planes without knowing more about what you want to do and your budget - again, ask locally.

    Keep an eye on the BARCS forum (and consider joining BARCS if you do get back into your flying).
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Hexaflexagon

Thanks Nick,

The name, as I guess you've twigged, comes from being fascinated at school in the 60s with the column in the Scientific American magazine written by the American Martin Gardner, and his various books on all things maths and mathematical puzzles. Hexaflexagons being just one diversion that engaged me.

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Check on the slope that you may choose to fly that power is allowed. It isn't always. 

Also might just be worth considering if adding power to a slope soarer removes those lovely **** clenching moments. 

Convenient and on some slopes perhaps very convenient, but it's certainly not such a simple choice as it may seem at first thought. 

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oipigface

Nick Jackson's answer is very comprehensive, and I agree with him about investing in some up-to-date gear. One advantage he doesn't mention is that many manufacturers now supply wireless buddy-box systems, which you may find useful in the initial stages of teaching your grandson.  

I also agree with Mike as to the desirability of a motor. Choose the right days and the lift will always be there to power you. A motor is a bit like training wheels on a bike, but the costs of an unexpected event are unlikely to be as serious as skinned knees and elbows. 

Welcome back!

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Phil.Taylor

Hi Hexaflex

Welcome back !

One thing thats really changed over the years is that RC gear is now much cheaper than it used to be - vs. cost of living etc. Also, many Txs are programmable, so setting end points, centres & reversing is much easier than it used to be.

To answer your points:

1. The old Tx will probably be fine - but if you do decide to use it most definitely buy new batteries for both Tx & Rx.

2. If buying new - 2.4 - if old, stay on 35mhz cos most people are now on 2.4

3. If 2.4 - matching brand for Tx & Rxs - used to be able to mix up some brands on 35mhz

4. Join the BMFA for the 3rd party insurance - and yes you need CAA registration. To get going again - and to get your grandson flying - I suggest something like a Multiplex Easyglider - easy to fly, soars well, motor for flat field flying - will fly on the slope in light to mid conditions - get the "RR" version, comes complete with motor & servos already fitted - just needs a Tx, Rx - and for electric power, lipo batteries & charger. Easily available eg link below:

https://www.sussex-model-centre.co.uk/easyglider-4-rr

Regards, Phil.

 

 

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Agree with Phil MPX Easy glider is a class act, alternatively slight further up the scale the MPX Solius. Looks nicer, slightly harder to fly.

Both will fly well off the flat, and flat field stuff while less entertaining (IMO) is a warmer environment.

Grandsons normally whinge at standing on a windy hill for anything over 30 minutes.

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oipigface

 

17 hours ago, Hexaflexagon said:

His dad reminded him that as a boy he and I had built a r/c glider and the grandson is now desperate to follow suit.

 If the main motivation is the flying, then yes, the Easyglider RR would be perfect, but if the attraction includes the building, then perhaps something else would be better. Something from Stan Yeo’s stable perhaps?

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Marc RC pilot

Welcome back home Hexaflexagon!

Happy flying to you and grandson, sounds like a great a great adventure is afoot. :)

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  • 2 weeks later...
Hexaflexagon

Hi,

Just deciding which glider to plump for.

The Multiplex Easyglider seems to come with a couple of  good recommendations here. Do the wings split into two sections for easier transport?

I've also come across the Skynetic Shrike. and the Volantex range. Does anyone have any comments on these? I see there have been some reviews which suggest the Shrike's spinner can come off when the motor is braked?

Just out of interest when a Tx is paired with it's receiver what prevents any interference with another Tx being used close by? My only experience is of the technology 30 years ago when different frequency crystals needed to be used.

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oipigface

The Easyglider wing comes in two halves, with a long joiner. I don’t remember what the original joiner was made of, but I have replaced it with a good, stiff epoxy glass rod. This mod improves the plane a lot.

2.4GHz RC gear uses a communications system known as ‘channel hopping’. This was the invention during WW2 of Hedy Lamarr - better known as a movie actress and ‘the most beautiful woman in the world’. It works by rapidly changing the transmission frequency. If two transmitters are ever on the same frequency, it will only be for a period of time short enough not to make any difference. It’s the basis of most secure communications system.

For more about Ms Lamarr look here https://www.forbes.com/sites/shivaunefield/2018/02/28/hedy-lamarr-the-incredible-mind-behind-secure-wi-fi-gps-bluetooth/

... and here she is with a great hat on:

 E12ADE82-8BCE-4E58-B953-568862FB4AD3.thumb.jpeg.bf315ed5994d9176e084c515e27ec2af.jpeg

 

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Kikapu

The wings on the Solius detach undamaged if you have a heavy landing.  Great thermal soarer too.  And I agree with an earlier commentator about Stan Yeo kits.  Very good.  

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EssexBOF
On 23/02/2021 at 14:42, oipigface said:

The Easyglider wing comes in two halves, with a long joiner. I don’t remember what the original joiner was made of, but I have replaced it with a good, stiff epoxy glass rod. This mod improves the plane a lot.

2.4GHz RC gear uses a communications system known as ‘channel hopping’. This was the invention during WW2 of Hedy Lamarr - better known as a movie actress and ‘the most beautiful woman in the world’. It works by rapidly changing the transmission frequency. If two transmitters are ever on the same frequency, it will only be for a period of time short enough not to make any difference. It’s the basis of most secure communications system.

For more about Ms Lamarr look here https://www.forbes.com/sites/shivaunefield/2018/02/28/hedy-lamarr-the-incredible-mind-behind-secure-wi-fi-gps-bluetooth/

... and here she is with a great hat on:

 E12ADE82-8BCE-4E58-B953-568862FB4AD3.thumb.jpeg.bf315ed5994d9176e084c515e27ec2af.jpeg

 

She also extended the channel hopping to husbands, as well😉😉

Barcs 230

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Must be a dodgy Rx if it needs all those aerials with stars on to get decent signal,  but I notice, like ours, it's best to keep them outside the main body. 

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