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Everything posted by mikep

  1. mikep


    Althought this is a very old thread I thought I would reply. I would guess that if you lowered the turn rate you would have better result on that last waypoint. My plane pretty much keeps flying a figure eight when it reaches the last waypoint.
  2. mikep


    Haven't been here in a while. I just read this thread and wanted to say RCAP was never designed to be flown on a helicopter. I'm not saying you could not make it work, but I would seriously no recommend it. It works fine on a high-wing, trainer type aircraft with a good amount of dyhedral which is what it was designed for. If anyone has questions, please post them to the source forge lists and I will answer them there. http://rcpilot.sf.net/ LOok for the support mailling list. As for kits and pre-build units they should be availbale again shortly. Right now I gave a few boards and chips to someone who is testing out the idea of building them for people. Regards, Mike
  3. There's a store that's been mentioned here several times that sells wireless video equipment. They specialize in surveillance cams, hidden cams for law enforcement etc. I believe they might be in New York State, but I could be wrong about that. I used to have a catalog for them, but can't find it now. I know there are tons of wireless cam sites on the net.... but these guys were pretty well known. If you can make some suggestions it might trigger some memories of their name! :-) Thanks, Mike
  4. Looking good!!! If I can make a few small comments though.... Are call sign and voltage optional? Would be nice if it was for people arlready using other boards that do not need this info. Also it looks like you loose one axis when these appear. Perhaps have them flash on top center and not loose the axis indicator. But definitely a VERY cool project Mr. RC-Cam!
  5. How many do you want? Maybe we can make a little deal. Pay for the 2 extra PICs and get them shipped to me here in Montreal, and I will burn yours and mail them off to you. If glichbusters has them he only charges like 2.00-2.50 for shipping.
  6. Actually the balloon guys do not notify FAA. It has to do with the payload weight and a few other stuff. You can see how they get exempt here. http://www.eoss.org/pubs/far_annotated.htm So if you create some regulations... don't forget the exemptions! :-)
  7. What makes trying to reach high altitudes with an R/C plane any different then the guys that send up balloons to 80,000 ft every weekend. And I know of several clubs that do this. And what about the 100's of weather balloons that go up every day. I can understand the need to to be vigilent about where you fly when trying to reach these altitudes. But I don't see why it should be banned. I object to the phrase "unreasonable acts of a few". What makes this any less reasonable then crossing the Atlantic with a model airplane that the AMA was SOOO proud of. Although I am not a member of the AMA.... I just sent my comments to Mr. Brown. It really irks me that when it is he and his friends doing these kind of thing it's a great event.... but if others try similar things it is unreasonable. My .02$
  8. That's funny... I also zapped myself pretty nicely on the flash! Well I don't mind giving you my code if you want it. It's in PicBasic Pro. Or if you simply want the basic steps I can give you that as well. Leave me your e-mail in a private message.
  9. From my experience, bi-planes tend to have a lot of drag. Ever have to bring one in with a dead stick? They sink like rocks! Personally I don't think they would make a good plane for any payload. A trainer is a much better bet. I've put 4 pounds in my 40 size trainer. Admittedly it also became a sinker... but it still flew quite well. Also the flat bottom and dyhedral in the wing give it some nice qualities for autopilots and RPV'ing. I've also use a Modeltech Cessna 182 model... I fly it with 10% flaps with a heavy load in it and it does quite well. My main "Carrying" machine is a Senior Telemater. It can handle a lot of weight, but considering it's a kit (not ARF) and the flight charateristics are only so so, I don't think I would bother with one again. I would simply look for a 60 size trainer ARF.
  10. Unfortunately it will be a while still before I get a kit together. I was hoping to get something out in June, but I don't think it will happend. Other commitments (Real Work) is keeping me pretty busy.
  11. Only thing about that is when you are wearing the glasses it's pretty hard to figure out if you are looking in the direction of the plane or not. At least for me. However it's pretty quick to reorient the antenna with a turn of the head. Although I think it's a great idea, I think I prefer the auto-trackers.
  12. Take a look at the latest TinyTrack. It's getting pretty small. TinyTrack Photo
  13. I don't use a program. I have incorporated it into my GPS stuff. Mostly I use it to make sure the sentence is complete and not corrupted before my autopilot uses the sentence for navigation. If the checksums don't match I disregard that sentence for navigation. And if I just need a one off, I use the calculator in windows with a character map to get the hex values. A bit slow, but it works. I suppose I could write a quick utility to do this in Windows but I really haven't needed to do it that often. Checksums are actually quite simple... when you start getting into CRC routines life gets somewhat more complicated! Cheers, Mike
  14. I will write off a quick e-mail to Garmin to see what they say. But I'm not very confident about their answers. In the past I got the feeling the person responding to my questions was not very knowledgable. I already have all the routines for calculating the checksums and reading the GPS from working on my autopilot. So putting together a project that listens to the GPS and records waypoints would not take very long. And you do need a cable connected between them anyways for writing. But I would rather not have to listen to the GPS. I will see what Garmin says. Right now I'm having a problem getting to their site. As for MOB, I don't think that would work. Generally I don't think there can be more than one MOB at a time. P.S. That sucks that it doesn't work on XP. I will have to try my daughters laptop to see why. I am using an old version of Visual Studio (6.0). I just can't get myself to take the hit for their .Net studio.
  15. Mmm... I think I'm talking to myself! ;-) OK Well SUCESS with the Garmin GPS 12 MAP. I don't have my Geko handy at the moment but I created a quick app to test it out. So if you want to try it simply download http://pages.infinit.net/mikejp/GPSTest.zip (Tested under Windows 2000 only) Start it, select the comm port and click on Write Waypoint. You will need to click on it a couple of times. Just ignore the error you will get on the first one. I think I need to clear out the buffers first but will never use this again so I won't bother fixing it. Basically what I was missing is that you MUST end the line with a CR LF. I was ending it with only a LF. Once this is done it works very well. The waypoint it will create is called VE2WMG. Let me know how it goes for the Geko. Or if anyone else wants to try it out with other GPSs I would be curious to know which ones support this. So it is actually not very tricky at all to create a waypoint in the GPS. It is quite simple in fact. What is a bit trickier, is that you will need to capture the current output from the GPS to know where you are to be able to write the waypoint. Garmin recommends not more than 3 devices that their GPSs can send info to and listen from just 1. I don't know about you guys, but I'm starting to go over that 3 device limit. ;-) What we really need to make this easier is a way to say create a GPS waypoint HERE. But if not I think the way to do this is a seperate PIC that will do this job. Simply listen in on the GPS, and on a high transition of a PIN send out the waypoint. Cheers, Mike
  16. Well just for the fun of it I tried sending those sentences using HyperTerminal. But nothing shows up on my GPS. So I started to question the format. So I went out to my car and tapped into the TM-D700 and here are the sentences that it is sending out. $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4530.50,N,07347.78,W,VE2SIL-2*3E $GPWPL,4530.50,N,07347.78,W,VE2SIL-2*3E $GPWPL,4530.50,N,07347.78,W,VE2SIL-2*3E $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4536.32,N,07334.69,W,VE2WMG-9*38 $GPWPL,4526.85,N,07341.02,W,VA2TBB-9*37 $GPWPL,4526.85,N,07341.02,W,VA2TBB-9*37 $GPWPL,4533.35,N,07333.11,W,VE2RIO-3*31 $GPWPL,4631.34,N,07245.00,W,VA2PBK*26 $GPWPL,4631.34,N,07245.00,W,VA2PBK*26 $GPWPL,4545.18,N,07216.68,W,VE2RHP-3*29 $GPWPL,4545.18,N,07216.68,W,VE2RHP-3*29 $GPWPL,4545.18,N,07216.68,W,VE2RHP-3*29 $GPWPL,4537.63,N,07423.93,W,VE2BNE-13*16 $GPWPL,4537.63,N,07423.93,W,VE2BNE-13*16 $GPWPL,4537.63,N,07423.93,W,VE2BNE-13*16 Basically the same thing. I took these and tried to send them using HyperTerm to the GPS and still nothing. So now I'm thinking perhaps it has to to with the string termination or something similar. I will have to write a little program to try it that way so I can control each byte going out. I'll let you know when it works, but I'm definately close. Mike
  17. I haven't tried this, and I'm not sure the Geko will take it, but try sending these to the GPS in NMEA4800. From where I found this it should work with the GPS12 and other Garmins. $GPWPL,5346.17,N,00030.15,W,M1BLR *5C $GPWPL,5342.91,N,00027.05,W,N TOWE*36 $GPWPL,5344.03,N,00025.68,W,G0VRM*6B So basically I would simply tie this in to whatever trigger you are using for the camera. If you are using a PIC get one with a UART and set the baud rate to 4800. I'm about to make a new trigger for my Toshiba Camera. I think I will incorporate this into it. Mike
  18. I haven't looked into how to do it, but yes I'm sure it could be done. I'll tell you why I am sure. I have a Kenwood TM-D700A VHF/UHF amateur radio. It has a built in TNC and provides APRS support (like the tinytrak but better). One of the options is that it can set waypoints from APRS stations that it hears. So everytime an APRS station sends out a beacon, it places a waypoint for it on my GPS screen with the call sign of the station. This is using NMEA4800. So if it's really not documented anywhere, I could simply tap into that signal and take a look at what it's sending. See if you can find how this is done, if not I will tap into it for you to see how they do it. I think it is a great idea. I've sent my plane up before for "Rescue" missions (trying to find downed aircraft) and even if you do see it in a photo, it is really hard at times to distinguish one area from another. Especially when your point of view is the ground. Mike
  19. The third pair was for up and down? As in are we flying upside down? Also to be used for calibration, was that it?
  20. What would be cool is a group purchase for parts and boards. I get boards made up at a pretty good price. At a small size, single sided we could probably get 50 boards made up for $100.00-$120.00. And if we ordered 200 sensors I'm sure the price would be pretty good as well.
  21. This project is based on Mr. RC-CAMs Sony project. Thanks to MR. RC-CAM for showing me how to go about this. Cheers, Mike
  22. The two pins closest to the edge are V+ (3.2V). When you press down lightly for the focus it shorts the two left side pins together. When you press down all the way it shorts the pins on the right side together. There are many places to find a ground, but I found the center pin of the on/off button to be the easiest to solder. So you need to solder 4 wires. Ground V+ Focus Shutter Then using V+ and ground to power the PIC you keep the focus and shutter pin low. Make the focus pin high for about half a second and then bring the shutter pin high for about a quarter second and then bring both back low again. You also need to periodically bring the focus pin high and then low to keep the camera from going to sleep.
  23. Once the selector knob is removed there are 2 screws below it that hold the plastic top. These need to be removed to get to the pins of the shutter button.
  24. I've decided to get a camera that had a NTSC out so I can get previews of my photos before I take them using a video TX. After looking around I found a Toshiba PDR-4300 at a very resonable price. I then started to take it apart to see if I could make a trigger for it similar to the Sony DSC-U20. The only thing tricky about removing the case are 2 screws behind the mode selector. You need to pry of the cap of the selector with a screw driver. Below it are 2 screws that will allow you to remove the selector knob.
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