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Air to air Camera platform idea ??

Old 03-04-2018, 03:11 AM
  #1  
goingbush
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Default Air to air Camera platform idea ??

Want to run this idea past the group.

Im thinking of making a small glider thing , say 3' span with a forward looking camera to film the tow plane ,

Instead of needing an assistant to control the glider thing Im thinking of putting a Futaba PA-2 Autopilot AND / OR a 3 axis stabiliser , So I could just put the TX on the ground whilst I fly the tug .

Idea being a good air to air video of the plane , albeit only from behind . The Glider thing would fly stable whilst filming a roll , not sure how it would react in a loop ?? but basically it should just follow the and video the tug nice and stable.

No need for light wing loading , don't want it rising too high above the tug.

It would have a fairly short tow line, say 20' or so ? to get a good view, with a release on the tug just incase.

Would it work ?, anyone tried it ?, or should I just concentrate on being able to get a flight in without crashing ??
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Old 03-04-2018, 04:13 AM
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dereckbc
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If built to work at a specific speed it might work. A glider or really any plane has to be be trimmed for the speed it is flying at. Slow down, the nose drops, descends, and seeks the speed it is trimmed for. Increase the speed, the nose rises, climbs and seeks the speed it is trimmed for.

In any plane, like say a Cessna 172, you control air speed with the elevators, and vertical speed with the throttle. Example say you climb to cruise altitude and trim the airspeed 100 knots for straight and level flight. To climb you increase power, to descend you decrease power. The plane will seek 100 knots.

So unless you have a way to trim the glider, it wil be fighting the tow plane in the opposite nose direction. If the glider nose pitches up and climbs, will pull the tow planes tail up and pitch the nose down. Could get interesting.
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Old 03-04-2018, 07:47 AM
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goingbush
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Thanks for that . Ideally I'd be going at a constant speed, but will still need to trim the glider for that speed, Something I didn't think of .

How about I use a 2nd RX bound to the same TX , but connect the elevator an unused channel & control with a spare side paddle .

I could just about manage that as long as the tow line was fairly short & i can see both models at once.
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Old 03-04-2018, 03:22 PM
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dereckbc
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Wished I could help out more, but this is above my pay grade. When I think about it, makes me think of towing a car/truck with a rope or chain with no driver in the towed vehicle to steer or brake. Think about that for a moment and how that ends. Two crashed cars or more right?

The only thing I can think of that can be towed behind a plane with just one pilot is a Drag Chute or Advertising Banner you release before landing. Without anyone to fly the glider, I think will only work once with at least one crashed plane assuming you can release the glider before both crash land. Otherwise both go home in a sack

One thing you said made me laugh though; "Loop".
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Old 03-04-2018, 05:45 PM
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pizzano
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Many guys have installed small cameras in/on there craft "in-tow" and recorded vid......most experimented with camera's un-assisted (static) first in order to get the capture alignment and quality down.

As for an onboard vid system that can be controlled for capture, I've seen two pilots involved, separate TX's, craft "in tow" controlled and vid via FPV.......not that it can't be done with a single pilot, but I have never personally seen it performed by a single control system in-place operated by only one person for two craft deployment.
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Old 03-05-2018, 11:06 AM
  #6  
goingbush
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20 years ago when I was younger and stupider I made a plane from soda cans for a MAN competition (and won)

in the video you can see me "aero-towing" a coke can , (apoligies for quality & music) I guess I could just tow around not much more than a camera with some missile style "ailerons" & stability module to keep it from rolling, yaw & pitch wont really matter much. call me stubborn but im going to try it .

https://youtu.be/CkuZwzox8KA


Last edited by Don Sims; 03-06-2018 at 01:13 AM.
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Old 03-05-2018, 04:32 PM
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quorneng
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Very impressive.
I notice you used a plastic pipe for the fuselage and an aluminium spar both "clad" in cans.
Surely a can is a strong and rigid structure in itself.

Now it would be a challenge to make an RC plane out of cans and nothing but cans.
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