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Old 10-30-2012, 12:04 AM   #1
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Default Cheap handheld anemometer

I was poking around on eBay last week and couldn't resist getting one of these: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-LCD-...E:L:OC:US:3160

I'm having some fun playing with it in the yard; wondering if it is going to be at all accurate in actual use... Anyone have any experience with these things / this particular one?

Dave
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Old 10-30-2012, 03:46 AM   #2
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Several of the guys at our field have them and I've ordered one just for curiosity. They're inexpensive these days and probably reasonably accurate. It wouldn't make my decision to fly or not but would help the bragging if I did!
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Old 10-30-2012, 07:22 AM   #3
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There are a couple of points to note with any hand-held Anenometer :

a) The speed they show is based on close to ground with all the effects that has .. eddies, 'friction', YOU !, angle to wind etc.
b) Comparison with forecast winds are that forecast winds are at 10m or higher of ground depending on topography ... and the actual wind experienced by model once it rises outside ground effects is quite different to what the HH meter shows.

Professional anenometers use the spinning cups for good reason - the angle you hold the meter to the wind is irrelevant. But with a vane or impellor type as many cheap ones are ... just a few degrees causes a big change in speed measurement.

I only know the above because for the years as a Merchant navy Officer - most ships I was on were Met Reporting ships with gear supplied by Met Offices.

But saying above does not mean it's not a good buy ... they are useful tools and even if speed results are not accurate - you will learn what is good to fly in and what is not....

I have a Professional spinning cup meter at home ... I use it on my yacht and also before flying etc. I also added the Windsock to my collection ... for me wind direction is more important as speed is yes or no for me !!

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Old 11-03-2012, 01:56 AM   #4
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If you have a Iphone there's a app. and it's call WIND METER it COST 0.99
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Old 11-03-2012, 02:12 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
There are a couple of points to note with any hand-held Anenometer :

a) The speed they show is based on close to ground with all the effects that has .. eddies, 'friction', YOU !, angle to wind etc.
b) Comparison with forecast winds are that forecast winds are at 10m or higher of ground depending on topography ... and the actual wind experienced by model once it rises outside ground effects is quite different to what the HH meter shows.

Professional anenometers use the spinning cups for good reason - the angle you hold the meter to the wind is irrelevant. But with a vane or impellor type as many cheap ones are ... just a few degrees causes a big change in speed measurement.

I only know the above because for the years as a Merchant navy Officer - most ships I was on were Met Reporting ships with gear supplied by Met Offices.

But saying above does not mean it's not a good buy ... they are useful tools and even if speed results are not accurate - you will learn what is good to fly in and what is not....

I have a Professional spinning cup meter at home ... I use it on my yacht and also before flying etc. I also added the Windsock to my collection ... for me wind direction is more important as speed is yes or no for me !!

Nigel
Check this sytem out. I bought one for my club several years ago, it's still going strong. That was before this company had a decent display for it, so I built my own with a microcontroller. This microcontroller shows current wind speed and peak windspeed. Those three cups start rotating at one or two MPH wind.

This is permanently mounted on an aluminum pipe over our RC club house.

Take a look:
http://www.inspeed.com/anemometers/default.asp

DennyV
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Old 11-03-2012, 02:23 AM   #6
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Seems one do nearly anything with a smartphone these days. I've used a similar app on my android phone to measure speed of planes at our field.

Way back in high school for me (late 60's) I remember a classmate bringing in a handheld calculator. Battery operated, size of a brick, 4 function, nixie tube digital display. (Google nixie tube for explanation if you're younger than 50!)
Best I recall it was in the $300 ballpark! We gathered around and it was all oohs and aahs.
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Old 11-03-2012, 02:48 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Beemerider View Post
Seems one do nearly anything with a smartphone these days. I've used a similar app on my android phone to measure speed of planes at our field.

Way back in high school for me (late 60's) I remember a classmate bringing in a handheld calculator. Battery operated, size of a brick, 4 function, nixie tube digital display. (Google nixie tube for explanation if you're younger than 50!)
Best I recall it was in the $300 ballpark! We gathered around and it was all oohs and aahs.
People forget that back in the 60's, $300 was a fair amount of money. For me, that $300 was four months rent. Puts a different perspective on it. My first real computer in 1980 was an IBM PC for $1400. For that amount of dollars, it did not include a monitor, keyboard, or even a hard drive. It just had one 5 1/4 inch floppy drive. That's it. It brings back memory of installing Microsoft Word in it, with over 30 floppy disks, inserted one at a time.

My first computer was scratch built, with over 500 feet of wire wrapping in it, 3 inches at a time. It was used for simple word processing and address label making.

DennyV
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