EL Wire, Ma’at, EL Wire Redux

EL Wire

(eeearly morning edition)

Hmaat.jpgmm. I need a lot of electroluminescent wire for the plane! I’m starting the measurements and it looks like it’s going to take 11″ per loop/feather. I’m planning on 48 loops on the bottom of the plane, plus some outlining…. that’s at least 44 feet of wire just for the bottom! Hmm. What does 44 feet of wire weigh???

I have a sample coolneon kit with about 77 inches of the stuff. It weighs 1 oz +- 5%. So that’s 7 oz of wire for the underside… another 4 for the topside, 1.4 oz for a 9v battery. Hmmm 13 oz of payload on a 28 oz plane. Maybe not. I’ll work it out.

PPG gave me the really good idea to look for Egyptian figurines as a model. (yes, I saw her. I think our friendship will survive) I found Ma’at, the Egyptian goddess and embodiment of truth. You’ll likely be seeing an aerial Ma’at over the skies of Black Rock City in a month!

That’s Ma’at on the left and Isis on the right in the picture.

EL Wire redux

I took the Zagi out to do some sample flying

Zagi 400, 26 oz (including motor & battery but not payload) 292 sq in wing surface, Mega 16/15/4 motor, 6×4 prop, Zagi 8 cell 1700 Mah battery, + 10.5 oz of my grampa’s old tools

It flies just great… It flies a little erratic (probably because the weight is on the top of the wing, pushing the center of gravity up) and it’s a little harder to turn (likely inertia) but the big thing I was worried about was that it would sink like a rock and that isn’t an issue, and I needed to lay hard on the throttle (mostly due to me flying in 20mph slightly gusty winds just before a storm (I want to make this project happen NOW!)), and I had to jump a fence to fetch the plane once (When I took off, I lost a 1 oz weight that I had placed mid-wing, that started a leftward spiral that, in order to save from a really hard crash, I ended up hitting a fence and the Zagi tumbled over the fence… hence the climbing. I’m confident that I can put a 13 oz. lighting payload on a plane

Static thrust motor output: NiMH1: 16 oz, Nicad1: 16oz, LiPoly: 23 oz!

That’s a 36oz plane with 16-23 oz of thrust… very respectable for an electric. I had previously gotten used to getting 9oz of static thrust out of brushed speed 400s. Represented as fractions:

Plane thrust (oz) flying weight (oz) thrust/weight ratio
Old Zagi (brushed) 9 26 .35
New Zagi (brushless) 23 26 .88
New Zagi with payload 23 36 .64 (way better than the old Zagi)
New Zagi with payload (old batts) 16 36 .44
Projeti 23 20 1.15 (>1, vertical performance)

After crunching the numbers, I am resolved: just do it.

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