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Advice on electronics welcome. Everything is ordered, I think...

#1
As my username suggests I am completely new to the hobby but I can already tell its addictive. Been doing a ton of research and placed all my orders over the weekend. I was checking to make sure everything was correct and thought I could post up what's on the way and get feedback from the community on my product selections so I can avoid burning anything up or if i have missed anything I will need. Most of the suggested items were back ordered so I did my best to find comparable alternatives. How did I do?


FlightTest 3 pack swappable kit (ft flyer will be the first built and flown I think)
Got the dollar tree foam to DIY but I wanted to support the guys at FT so I bought the 3 pack kit from them. I figure I can use the foam for the wing when I'm ready.

Rx/Tx
FrSky Taranis & X8R

Motor
Suppo 2208/14 1450kv Brushless Motor (Park 370 equiv.)

Esc
Suppo 20A Brushless ESC

Prop
Gemfan APC-style 8x4E Electric

Servo
Suppo SP-90 9g Micro Servo

Battery options



Charger


Low voltage alarm (telemetry sensor out of stock for taranis)


Edited to add some links. I can add the rest if anyone wants the info.
Hobby-king links removed as I cant recommend anyone use them from my experience with them.
 
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#2
Seems like you have a good handle on the recipe. But you forgot "Flight instructor" or "open 40 acre field for practicing" :p
-Note that you have to change the ESC to LiPo mode as it ships stock for NiMh.
Don't forget a JST connector for the ESC
JST connectors are OK for low power systems (<10A) but if you think you'll use 1000mAh or 1300mAh batteries, you may want to look at the XT-60 connectors. The size and type of batteries I use for parkfliers (nano-tech 30C and up) use the yellow XT-60 connectors.

You really don't need the low voltage alarm. It is totally optional for these planes.
 
#3
Thank you!

Seems like you have a good handle on the recipe. But you forgot "Flight instructor" or "open 40 acre field for practicing" :p
-Note that you have to change the ESC to LiPo mode as it ships stock for NiMh.
Don't forget a JST connector for the ESC
JST connectors are OK for low power systems (<10A) but if you think you'll use 1000mAh or 1300mAh batteries, you may want to look at the XT-60 connectors. The size and type of batteries I use for parkfliers (nano-tech 30C and up) use the yellow XT-60 connectors.

You really don't need the low voltage alarm. It is totally optional for these planes.

Exactly the type of feedback I was looking for!
Adding XT-60 connectors to the buy list as I figure I'll just standardize everything with a single connector type. I don't have 40 acres but a buddy owns a farm so it's close! As for the instructor I got nuthin, hobbyking was perminatly out of stock on those... ;)

I honestly had no clue esc's had "modes" I will have to google that one to find out how to change the ESC to LiPo mode
 
#4
The ESC info is right on the page for the ESC, red letters at the bottom. It's pretty easy to switch. It's just moving the throttle stick on the radio, follow the instructions and you'll get it. It's really odd that it is set for NiMh though. All the ESC's I have seen for years are set to auto limit for 2-3 cell (or more) LiPo's.

I'm not a fan of thottle programming so I usually buy the Turnigy Plush ESCs as I have their programmer. I'd get you a link but HK isn't opening for me just now.
 
#5
The ESC info is right on the page for the ESC, red letters at the bottom. It's pretty easy to switch. It's just moving the throttle stick on the radio, follow the instructions and you'll get it. It's really odd that it is set for NiMh though. All the ESC's I have seen for years are set to auto limit for 2-3 cell (or more) LiPo's.

I'm not a fan of thottle programming so I usually buy the Turnigy Plush ESCs as I have their programmer. I'd get you a link but HK isn't opening for me just now.
I was able to print the instructions, thanks!
 
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Montiey

Master Tinkerer
#6
Hey guys, sorry to jab into this thread with a new topic, but how to you crimp JST connecters? My batteries already have them, but when the ESC's come, i'll need to put some on there.
 
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Ron B

Posted a thousand or more times
#7
That is a good motor but on 3s is a bit much for the 3 pack you would be better off with a 2s batt.
I use the same motor on a 21 oz plane with an under cambered wing and had to downsize the power by going to a 2s.
 
#8
That is a good motor but on 3s is a bit much for the 3 pack you would be better off with a 2s batt.
I use the same motor on a 21 oz plane with an under cambered wing and had to downsize the power by going to a 2s.
I totally appreciate the insight! I'm going to grab a 2s so I can compair. Electronically the 3s is ok to use though right?
 
#9
Hey guys, sorry to jab into this thread with a new topic, but how to you crimp JST connecters? My batteries already have them, but when the ESC's come, i'll need to put some on there.
I'm obviously no authority on the subject but I would think you would want to solder and heat shrink the connection. Someone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.
 

Montiey

Master Tinkerer
#10
I'm obviously no authority on the subject but I would think you would want to solder and heat shrink the connection. Someone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.
I love shrink tube, so thats no question.. I think you crimp or solder the wires to the metal connectors, then slide them into the plastic casing and they click into place.
 
#11
Only reason I say solder is I would want it as bombproof as possible. I'm treating this like my Harley, locktite, torque, glue, tape and maybe it won't shake loose, maybe.
 
#13
If you get raw JST connectors, they are tiny. You'll be hard pressed to get 16GA wire into the openings but it can be done. 18GA is much easier. You can use a purpose made set of terminal pliers for servo wire, or Snap-On makes a nice set too but they're pricey. You can get a generic set of terminal pliers by the wire strippers or telephone jacks at Depot too. Or you do it manually.

Lay the metal part (terminal) of the connector on your bench with the connector's "fingers" up. Twist the exposed wire tightly and tin the end with a little solder. Lay the wire into the connector and use a tiny screw driver or needle nose pliers to roll the fingers tightly over the wire. You may only have to heat the connector to flow the solder, you may have to add a tiny bit. Do not glob it on. The terminals then slide into the back of the plastic body.

If you find decent ones with good leads get those and just solder the wires like any other.... Crud, all that talk of JST's and I just recalled you said you were going to standardize on XT-60s. Those are easy and I'm sure there are 1000 how to vid's on youtube of soldering them.

I'll tell you a hint for soldering the 3.5mm motor connectors. Drill three holes, maybe 3/8" apart, in a scrap 2x4 the right dimension to just fit them 1/2 way. You can flux, tin and solder three at a go that way. It seems so simple but it took me a few years to do it. I was using reversed clothes pins to hold them. :rolleyes: Also, a hot air craft gun made for embossing is the cat's butt for shrinking heat shrink.

I'm glad you mentioned locktite. Make sure you lock tight the setscrews on your motor but be sure it's the removable kind of locktite.

As for 2S vs 3S, I have a nearly, if not identical, motor on a pusher and run it on 3S with a 7x3.5x3 prop. Maybe our friend has other info but i know mine has been a trooper. If you ever do bump the thermal overload of an ESC, just run a prop 1" smaller and see what happens. A watt meter is a great tool to have in your box for testing but it's not the end of the world.
 

Balu

Moderator
Staff member
Admin
Moderator
#14
Taranis radio, that's pretty advanced for a beginner. If you need help I have one too.
We beginners don't call it "advanced", but manly - in a Tim Taylor kind of way ;).

The Taranis is my first radio too, mainly because of all the channels, but also because you can find solutions and or howto videos for nearly all problems online.
 
#15
Taranis radio, that's pretty advanced for a beginner. If you need help I have one too.
I agree, it is an ambitious choice of controller but after researching the options this seemed the logical choice. I wanted a transmitter that I could grow into and not need to buy another later. Other options I considered were 9x but all the legwork to make it as good as the 9xr made me look at the 9xr the issue there was after adding transmitter, rx module, battery, receiver, you start to get near the taranis price point with no telemetry. What really sealed the deal was the videos, manual, and guides for the taranis are everywhere and being a programmer by trade the open source software is the cherry on top!

Thank you for offering to help if I have questions on it, I may take you up on it.
 
#16
If you get raw JST connectors, they are tiny. You'll be hard pressed to get 16GA wire into the openings but it can be done. 18GA is much easier. You can use a purpose made set of terminal pliers for servo wire, or Snap-On makes a nice set too but they're pricey. You can get a generic set of terminal pliers by the wire strippers or telephone jacks at Depot too. Or you do it manually.
Thank you for taking the time to give a detailed writ-up on the connections!
 
#18
I agree, it is an ambitious choice of controller but after researching the options this seemed the logical choice. I wanted a transmitter that I could grow into and not need to buy another later. Other options I considered were 9x but all the legwork to make it as good as the 9xr made me look at the 9xr the issue there was after adding transmitter, rx module, battery, receiver, you start to get near the taranis price point with no telemetry. What really sealed the deal was the videos, manual, and guides for the taranis are everywhere and being a programmer by trade the open source software is the cherry on top!

Thank you for offering to help if I have questions on it, I may take you up on it.
I am also willing to help if you have any questions with the Taranis. I am also a programmer by trade and it looks like you did your research so I think you should be fine. Really, the tricky part for me was figuring out how to get to the various screens. But, in many cases, you can use the Companion9X software to set up the radio so you do not have to do all the programming on the radio itself (very handy and faster to navigate).

One word of advice: Be sure to test as much as possible on the ground before you fly. Better to find a problem on the ground as you may not be able to fix it in the air.
 
#19
One word of advice: Be sure to test as much as possible on the ground before you fly. Better to find a problem on the ground as you may not be able to fix it in the air.
Thank you for the advice! I am a research nut, I think I am going to do a write-up on this for other newbs like myself to cover all the things that seem trivial to more experienced people. I found the tutorials and scratch build videos a great resource but once I committed to buying the kit and electronics I ran into many questions and spent many hours reading and researching. It may be odd that I actually enjoy figuring out this stuff on my own but for those who don't I figure I can save them time. My idea for the write-up is to provide the list of materials with links then a series of videos from unboxing to first flight. Because I have zero experience at this I assume all the problems I encounter and mistakes I make others could learn from and I can give back something to the community that's helped me get this far already.