Lost two FPV Multis in one day! (FOUND BOTH!!) - Page 10 - RCCanada - Canada Radio Controlled Hobby Forum
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Old 10-19-2012, 06:33 AM   #91
Mark L @ FL

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Re: Lost two FPV Multis in one day! (FOUND BOTH!!)

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There are lost model alarms already that connect to the Rx and can be triggers by Tx or when signal is lost.
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Old 10-19-2012, 10:57 AM   #92
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Re: Lost two FPV Multis in one day! (FOUND BOTH!!)

I found one... but in many of these multicopter crashes I read about, the battery gets ejected, which means loss of power. My idea is to bundle a power source, receiver and alarm together such that it would survive the crash and can be triggered at will by the user to find the model.
And I just had another idea to add to this... Add to it a small cluster of those very tiny but bright surface mount LED's to the equation. Mount many of them in the shape of a dome so that they emit bright light in many directions when triggered.

Last edited by Gump; 10-19-2012 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 10-22-2012, 09:10 AM   #93
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Re: Lost two FPV Multis in one day! (FOUND BOTH!!)

Here is a relevant snippet from the RC Group's multirotor index on the subject of locator devices:

Locator devices:
--TIP 1: Never mount a buzzer alarm on, or point it toward the flight control board. It can cause poor flight controller board performance. Mount it at least 5 inches away if possible. Use shielded wire ot the buzzer and do not run the wires over the accelerometer or gyros.
--TIP 2: Always fly with a locater device that is range tested and operational. It is wise to use a separate and secured battery for the locater device as batteries have been known to eject or be damaged in a "hard-landing". Multiple locater devices are recommended for redundancy.
--TIP 3: Attach a sealed note with your phone number and a reward offer just in case someone finds it to give them incentive to return it. Be advised that if you model causes damages that you will be liable and locatable too. This should motivate you to always fly in a safe area away from people and property.
--Beacon which uses an inexpensive FRS/GMRS UHF transceiver by Fmkit: http://www.fmtv.us/rf_beacon.html and http://fpv-community.com/forum/showthread.php?tid=81 and http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1274173
--BIY 433Hz Beacon Instructable: http://www.instructables.com/id/433-...acon/?ALLSTEPS
--Build your own Radio Lost Model Locator by Smet: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1521561 , http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1548079
--Communications Specialists tracking system: http://www.com-spec.com/rcplane/index.html
--DIY GPS locator: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...2#post16203843
--GPS Tracker APRS by Aadamson: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1488481
--Loc8tor: store: http://www.loc8tor.com/Store/?gclid=...FRSfnAod7Hzzjg forum:
--LOMA, BIY Lost Model Alarm by RC-Cam: http://www.rc-cam.com/lma.htm
--The Plane Locator: http://www.theplanelocator.com/rcplane/index.html
--Trackduino GPS APRS Tracker: http://www.trackuino.org/2011/01/how...ino-board.html
--Water activated key fob flotation device: http://www.water-buoy.com/index.php
--XBee/GPS based locator: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=993165
Personally, I prefer multiple approaches on my FPV multicopters. I use:

1. The video signal and body shielding technique. This works very well and is very precise, but requires that the video subsystem continues to work post-crash.
2. Ground station recording with GPS coordinates. It is my perfect memory for visual orientation and event sequecnes and also captures the OSD data and GPS coordinates. No real cons to this one other than it captures the video signal. If the aircraft goes down, the DVR will retain the last moments for review.
3. Telemetry from the OSD. The last tramsmitted GPS coordinates are retained and displayed on my EagleTree EagleEyes with power panel. Dependent on the video signal.
4. I use a Loc8tor tag on each aircraft. This works within 100' or so, so you need to be fairly close to use it effectively. It has it's own battery, so it is important to test it before each flight. I have seen people wire up external batteries to the tag for extra capacity.

I also bought a standalone mini GSM GPS tracker from China for another layer of insurance, but mine doesn't work. Also, the flight controller on my spider quad supports GPS navigation, but I have yet to get it dialed in.

On the subject of crash avoidance, spending time making the system as robust as possible is the best strategy and in many cases is not expensive (many times it is just relocating or shielding components). Of course, flying within the RF envelopes of both the R/C and video systems is critical. Both my aircraft display real-time RSSI measurements on the OSD video stream and that combined with the video feedback from the video signal helps me stay within the zones for both the RC and video systems.
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