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Night Flying Discuss night time aircraft illumination, methods and equipment.

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Old 12-31-2013, 04:18 AM   #1
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Default Heads Up RC lights won't work

I am having an issue with my Heads Up RC lighting strip. I have cut the servo wire signal wires for the connectors and soldered everything properly. The red lights I received from Hobbyking light up fine, but so far the green strips don't light up. I can even plug the green lights in, and touch the red light strip to where the soldering was done and the red lights light up, and the green remains dead. If I connect a battery right to the green they light up, even through the soldering I did on them. I can't figure out what is wrong.
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Old 12-31-2013, 05:02 AM   #2
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must be a 12v strip. your bec should step voltage down to 5-6 volts, which must not be bright enough for the heads up strip.

just a guess...

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Old 12-31-2013, 05:44 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
must be a 12v strip. your bec should step voltage down to 5-6 volts, which must not be bright enough for the heads up strip.

just a guess...
I was thinking that, but the red strip I have also seems to be a 12V, considering it is bright with the 3s plugged into it. It is dimmer plugged into the receiver, but still bright. The green should be the same
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:09 AM   #4
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Surprisingly, Different colors of LEDs operate at different voltages across the LED itself.

Many red LEDs operate at around 1.7vdc, while many other colors need 3-3.4vdc to light.

You red strip might be within it's range to light, but the green is just outside it's ability to light.

Try them with 7.4 volts across the leads, they should light.

I use a 3s lipo for my LED strip lights, with a receiver controlled switch from HK. I did some testing while monitoring battery voltage so I know how long I can leave them on, and still be above 3.5 v per cell. I don't want my lights and motor on the same battery unless I have to.

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Old 12-31-2013, 07:34 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Wildflyer View Post
Surprisingly, Different colors of LEDs operate at different voltages across the LED itself.

Many red LEDs operate at around 1.7vdc, while many other colors need 3-3.4vdc to light.

You red strip might be within it's range to light, but the green is just outside it's ability to light.

Try them with 7.4 volts across the leads, they should light.

I use a 3s lipo for my LED strip lights, with a receiver controlled switch from HK. I did some testing while monitoring battery voltage so I know how long I can leave them on, and still be above 3.5 v per cell. I don't want my lights and motor on the same battery unless I have to.
So what would the best option be then, I am using the lights in a Mini Switch, not exactly a lot of room for another battery, and it wouldn't be easier to tap into the battery pack with the xt60 connectors.
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Old 12-31-2013, 01:04 PM   #6
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I have lights from HURC and I run them right off the battery they light up no problem. I connect a JST to my ESC battery wires, and solder one to the lights works great. All his lights run off of the same voltage and best with 3c battery, but you can use a 2c just not as bright.

Did you send them a email with your problem they have excellent customer service.
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Old 12-31-2013, 02:23 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by gramps2161 View Post
I have lights from HURC and I run them right off the battery they light up no problem. I connect a JST to my ESC battery wires, and solder one to the lights works great. All his lights run off of the same voltage and best with 3c battery, but you can use a 2c just not as bright.

Did you send them a email with your problem they have excellent customer service.
What does your set up look like?
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Old 12-31-2013, 02:35 PM   #8
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Here is a pic of my setup I have done all my lights this way so I can unplug them when I fly during the day.


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Old 12-31-2013, 02:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by gramps2161 View Post
Here is a pic of my setup I have done all my lights this way so I can unplug them when I fly during the day.
Thanks for the pic. So I could snip off the end of a y harness and solder into the xt60 connector end. I am using about 4 sets of lights though, would that mean I just plug two y harnesses into the y harness coming off of the xt60, allowing me to have 4 plugins. Then, I can disconnect from multiple places to shut off the lights.
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Old 12-31-2013, 03:44 PM   #10
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Should work just more wgt. and more work to unplug them. I have 7 sets of lights I just soldered them all together for the setup I have. when I branched out to the left and right side of the plane I soldered on 2 neg. and 2 pos. wires my lights are like one long strip then.

Here is a link to RCG sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. MetroGTI posted pics to give me a hand on doing the lights on this plane posts 175 and 176 show's how he did it. http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...=blufo&page=12
Nice and easy and just one connection point took me longer to solder the lights then to build this plane, but worth it in the end.


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Old 12-31-2013, 05:37 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by gramps2161 View Post
Should work just more wgt. and more work to unplug them. I have 7 sets of lights I just soldered them all together for the setup I have. when I branched out to the left and right side of the plane I soldered on 2 neg. and 2 pos. wires my lights are like one long strip then.

Here is a link to RCG sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. MetroGTI posted pics to give me a hand on doing the lights on this plane posts 175 and 176 show's how he did it. http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...=blufo&page=12
Nice and easy and just one connection point took me longer to solder the lights then to build this plane, but worth it in the end.
My Mini Switch is somewhat overpowered now anyway with its 2836 motor at 1200kV, going around 60mph I'm guessing, with the skis on. I don't notice much weight increase with the y harnesses installed. I soldered everything up, hooked up a couple y harnesses and have 3 light strips working, may go to 4 soon. Thanks everyone, they lights are nice and bright, and it turns out my soldering isn't that bad with a completely worn out tip (Radioshack has out of stock in tips when I went last).

What kind of lights are you using gramps, they look light orbs, not strips.
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:26 PM   #12
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get a couple of pins and make a connector for the balance plug and pull 12v's out there.

slow stock prop reversal. it flies! easily! 543 watt dual motor bipe slow stick. push-me-pull-you. 242 watt 3 channel slow stick. 365 watt mini ultra stick. 415 watt mini contender. 810 watt ultra stick .25e. 220 watt alpha 450 sport (retired).
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:22 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
get a couple of pins and make a connector for the balance plug and pull 12v's out there.
I thought of doing that, but realized that I would still need to add y -harnesses, so it was easier just soldering a y-harness to the esc's connector to the battery.

I can't seem to create threads right now, so what are some good foam kit warbirds, or possibly even balsa, although I am unsure of the durability of balsa.
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:53 PM   #14
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You can tap power from 2s & 3s batteries at the power plug. On larger batteries plugging into the balance plug allows you to get the voltage you want.

One way to make a plug for the balance plug is to insert two solid wires or pins through a piece of wax paper, into a balance connector, and then sandwich them between two small pieces of thin plywood, or short pieces of a Popsicle stick. mark it clearly for polarity. then solder your flex leads to the other ends of the pins.

The wax paper helps stop the CA glue or other glues from getting into the balance plug.

Whatever you do, make certain there is NO way it could cause a short.

There are so many good foam warbirds kits available, I would suggest picking ou you favorite plane, and see what you can find for it.

Balsa has no inherent durability issues, I have planes that were built in the 60's that are still just fine. It is really more of a crash issue, a balsa plane will probably need more repair time after a crash than a foam plane. I feel a well built balsa plane looks and flys better, but I am an old time kit builder. I have friends that make a good argument that a good foam plane, is more likely to be free of warps and misalignment issues. Plus molded EPO foam can have some very nice scale details molded right in. A little ageing effects and gun residue, can make a foam warbird look great.

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Old 12-31-2013, 10:04 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
My Mini Switch is somewhat overpowered now anyway with its 2836 motor at 1200kV, going around 60mph I'm guessing, with the skis on. I don't notice much weight increase with the y harnesses installed. I soldered everything up, hooked up a couple y harnesses and have 3 light strips working, may go to 4 soon. Thanks everyone, they lights are nice and bright, and it turns out my soldering isn't that bad with a completely worn out tip (Radioshack has out of stock in tips when I went last).

What kind of lights are you using gramps, they look light orbs, not strips.
Those are the strip lights from Heads Up. The way I have them setup is so they glow through the foam.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:04 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Wildflyer View Post
You can tap power from 2s & 3s batteries at the power plug. On larger batteries plugging into the balance plug allows you to get the voltage you want.

One way to make a plug for the balance plug is to insert two solid wires or pins through a piece of wax paper, into a balance connector, and then sandwich them between two small pieces of thin plywood, or short pieces of a Popsicle stick. mark it clearly for polarity. then solder your flex leads to the other ends of the pins.

The wax paper helps stop the CA glue or other glues from getting into the balance plug.

Whatever you do, make certain there is NO way it could cause a short.

There are so many good foam warbirds kits available, I would suggest picking ou you favorite plane, and see what you can find for it.

Balsa has no inherent durability issues, I have planes that were built in the 60's that are still just fine. It is really more of a crash issue, a balsa plane will probably need more repair time after a crash than a foam plane. I feel a well built balsa plane looks and flys better, but I am an old time kit builder. I have friends that make a good argument that a good foam plane, is more likely to be free of warps and misalignment issues. Plus molded EPO foam can have some very nice scale details molded right in. A little ageing effects and gun residue, can make a foam warbird look great.
Is there a benefit to using the balance plug over what I did?

I am having trouble finding actual kits, just a lot of arf plane. As for balsa, I find a lot of short kits, and I don't exactly know what materials I need to complete the short kits. I am looking for BF109 or Spitfire kits.

How are these kits? http://manzanolaser.com/html/warbirdkits.html

And with these, they suggest a gearbox for some reason: http://www.mountainmodels.com/index....b78272d9dac525
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