Monday, August 26, 2013

Pike Electro Maiden Flight

I finally had a chance to try the Pike Electro last week-end but, again, had some trouble with the motor (Kontronik Kira 480-43) and ESC (Castle Creation ICE Lite 100). Hopefully maiden flight was at the slope, so I could fly without motor for the launch before to start the motor. Problem is that each time I was starting the motor, the ESC was cutting it after 2 sec (over current detected, according to the logs ! ). This is very surprising because following advises from  specialist, I sized down the propeller to 13x8 in order to stay in the confort area, and the current was not supposed to exceed 70Amp maximum. The cut threshold was set at 100A. Several attempts has been done, and each time the ESC was cutting after 2s, except during the last start where I got more motor time (about 10s), but this time when I stopped, I didn't have any break despite it is correctly configured and it was working well earlier !!

To be honest I'm lost with this setup. This ESC is a brand new one, and has been replaced by Castle under warranty because the first one melted the shrink tube and shown 200A current peak !!!

Has the Kontronik motor been damaged (having micro shortcuts) after the very first attemps with the Rotmilan and the first ESC ? is the new ESC malfunctioning again ? No Idea...

In the meantime a friend of mine crashed his Electro Dingo with  CC 75A ICE Lite ESC from the same brand, while he was circling (motor off !!!!). He lost the radio control of the Dingo (as he was using the BEC) which dived from 200m with the plane totally destroyed as a result. The ESC "just" burned, despite the plane is 2 years old without any damages, or hard landing with the same setup. ununderstadable. Yesterday, another modeller burned his 100A ICE lite ESC while starting the motor.

In my case, I know that I did a mistake by choosing this high Kv motor requiring high current in 3S, but it should work according to the spec and simulation, even with some margin.

As a consequence, I don't trust the ESC and have no idea about the shape of the motor, so I finally decided to order a new motor first, then a new controller. the new motor is an interresting combination with a Leopard motor and a Reinauser gear. This combination is proposed by SlopeRacer in UK and gives plenty of satisfaction to the happy owners that I discussed with by email and on the forum. Depending of the propeller choice and battery, it can deliver up to 1.4 kW of power !!

In my case, I opted for a 3s battery, and a 17x11 or 18.5x10 propeller, resulting in a about 750W, which is good enough for my use. For the ESC, I chose the YGE90LV, a "made in germany" controller. YGE has an high reputation in the helicopter and & airplane world. The Controller is on its way to my home at the time I'm writing these lines.

The good news is that the layout I chose with the MKS DS 6100 in the tail is prefect, and that the Electro Pike is fling exactly as the "normal" Pike, which is no surprising as I just copied the settings to another memory on my XG11 and added the Motor command.

I will of course keep you all posted of my progress !

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