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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Electric Sailplane Clinic 3 video review

This second educational video from Radio Carbon Art "Electric Sailplane Clinic 3" is dedicated to ALES/F5J and is a good prolongation of the F3X Building Clinic video I covered few weeks ago. This time, Paul Naton focuses on everything specific to this rapidly growing category that becomes, as it is based on simple rules and is, from my point of view, less elitist thant F3J. The video doesn't come back on wing servo installation for example as it is considered as "learned" thanks to the first video.

The video introduction is few secondes of nice action footages, with some onboard sequences. The plane presented/used in the whole video is an Explorer 3.8m from Nan Model. Then Paul covers a certain numbers of topics:
  • choice of suitable motors presentation, considered as references, evenf if today, the choice on the market is now plethoric, and fortunately for all kind of budget. Same for the ESC to associate with the motor. 
  • Few words on Lipo battery Backup Guard, if you are using a BEC and in case of BEC failure, so the 5V output will allow your flight system to land safely with total confidence, and avoid the low voltage and failsafe on the receiver. 
  • Then Paul speaks a bit about propellers, then presents some adequat servos to be installed in the fuselage, the receiver (and satellite) 
Before to start the installation, Paul determines the adequate layout to obtain the correct CG and avoid any post assembly balance lead,  and for this, go through a very detailed flying weight estimation. Then he presents the "Aluminium firewall", a robust and light aluminium motor mount and how to install it. The power setup installation (motor and ESC) follows, then the spinner with some hit and tips to obtain an efficient propeller retract along the fuselage, the same I used on my Electro Pike :)

Then comes the fuselage radio installation under the wings. The part will differ from one plane to another depending if a special compartiment exists or not. The present example is with a simple carbon plate servo tray.  The assembly being finished, the weight checking allows to compare with the initial estimation.

The second part of the video focuses on ESC programmation, how to choose the Lipo batterie (Curve, Reserve, Safe capacity) , voltage or HV / internal resistance / C discharge.
Then Paul presents an interesting tool called "Lipo ESR meter" to measure internal resitance and true C discharge, a good investment for people taking ALES and F5J very seriously.

After few words about charging technics and modern chargers, Paul explains how to track/monitor battery perfomances easily.  The following sequence is about Alti V4+ for ALES and F5J, Alti Micro, and CAM height limiter. Next is the presentation and use of ECalc for performance simulation based on the plane motor, etc ...

Before to go flying, Paul is doing a preflight checking, static test and result comparison. The last minutes of the video are again some flying nice action at the field, with an onboard camera with some close fly by or agressive short climbing to desmontrate what is achievable with a good power solution.

Like the first video, this second educational video is at the same level of quality, which means very professional, with very clear explanations, plenty of advises or recommendations. This is the perfect video for the modeller who has some basics in E-gliders but wants to start with a serious electro glider setup or even start ALES/F5J competition.  Electro Gliders require even more rigor and attention in their assembly and settings, because of the motor and associated power. If you do it right from the beginning thanks to this video, then you will be rewarded with many trouble free flights and will enjoy your plane !

More information on Radio Carbon Art website where you will find a wide choice of educational video covering almost all aspect of RC soaring, available in DVD or for download.

You can find a trailer of this video here "Electric Sailplane Clinic 3" Preview Trailer:

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