Projeti Arrival

Arrival

The Projeti arrived today with all it’s parts. That was fast :-)

Notables:

  • The $80 Mega brushless motor is virtually indistinguishable visually from the $10 brushed motor. Weird… cool…
  • The 2100 Mah 11.1 V lipoly battery is considerably smaller and lighter than my 1700 Mah 9.6 V Zagi pack. I’m still worried that I’ll be drawing too much juice from it, burning out this $80 battery prematurely. I’m especially worried about the temperature constraints of the pack. The Nevada desert will be 100 degrees during the day and the max recommended charging temperature of the battery is…. 100 degrees. The max recommended discharge temp is 160… only 60 degrees above ambient temp, and with the sun beating down on it. We’ll see what happens. Maybe I won’t fly it during the day.
  • The Projeti looks to be made from EPS foam. I was told that it was “a bit stronger than EPS”. It would have been nice if it were EPP or a foam-composite or something. But no, it’s just EPS. Of course I realized this issue before purchasing, but I’m still worried about its resiliency compared to the Zagi.
  • I wonder what 70 mph alkali dust storms do to r/c equipment?
  • I’m thinking of getting flexible lighting wire and creating the silhouette of a hawk on the bottom of the plane, then covering the bottom with doculam clear plastic sheeting. That could be cool.
  • The Triton charger is 1/2 the size of the Astroflight 110D charger. Tech. Cool.
  • If I can get the twin tails to fold down (or something), the whole suitcase I’ll need to haul the plane and equipment will only be about 34″ x 24″ x 5″. Cool.

Zagi News

My second motor is on its way out. I lost another $1 prop to overheating. I’m a bit surprised at that because this second motor is a 7.2V motor… IE, it spins slower at WOT. I had figured that the first motor, a 6V motor was burning itself out extra quick because I was pushing it waaay too hard. And I was only pushing the 7.2V way to hard.

The 2 NiMH 1100 battery packs are having some trouble. I pretty much figured when I got them that I was drawing too much power from them. But I got a whole year of flying out of them, so I’m not unhappy. I tried strapping both to the plane and flying them in parallel. It worked reasonably well. The plane was heavy like a dog but it flew fine enough. I was a bit surprised when I landed the dual-pack arrangement and both batteries were very hot. Shouldn’t I have been drawing 1/2 the normal amperage? Well, as I said, the packs are on their way out… But if they’re on their way out (loosing full power after only about 5 minutes), shouldn’t just 1 or 2 cells per pack be getting really hot? Eh. Whatever.

I ripped off a winglet Monday afternoon when I landed a little hard in some tall grass. So I tried flying winglet-free. YOW, bad idea! When I went into any kind of high-banked turn, the nose would turn toward the earth and I’d lose altitude like it was going out of style. I tried doing a roll without winglets and, YIPE! I had reasonably good form but midway through the roll, the plane started fluttering down to the ground like a piece of paper, flipping nose-over-tail and such. Just zooping about, it was hard to keep it flying straight. Any sudden shift on the controls or in the wind and the plane wouldn’t know which way was forward. Bleh! Conclusion: The Zagi 400X cannot fly without winglets. I’m glad I did the experiment.

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