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I hope this is in the right place. I'm doing a major research project for my High School Graduation. I go to a Science and Math Magnet school and we've spent three years prepping for this so it's kind of big.

I've always been interested in RC Planes/ UAVs unfortunately I've never really had the chance to get started with RC Planes so I don't know much about the topic so I need a lot of help.

I'll be building this whole thing from the ground up if it goes as planned. Some sort of stiff foam for the main parts. The thing is I need it to basically be an UAV.

I need a GPS transmitter that I could map on a computer (hopefully), a Video transmitter, 4 Channel flight control (I think I hear 3 might be easier). The whole system needs to be able to carry a small payload. Most likely a Data logging thermometer. The whole project will be testing the Concept that UAV's on a small scale can be used in Weather Research applications.

I've got a small sketch of what I was thinking (Sorry for the crude sketches)


Hope you guys can help me. As I don't know very much about this you can suggest as much as you could possibly want.

Thanks Alot,


Edited by poorieuser
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hey welcome to the site . i think the plane that will suit u best is the MULTIPLEX TWINSTAR which will help you carry the payload you want to set up. you can find this airplane in towerhobbies.com, for your video equipment you may want to go to futurehobbies.com just make sure you email them before you placce an order beaucase these guys are always out of their office so just email them first. another website for video is rangevideo.com but i've only dealt with futurehobbies.

you will find alot of information here about seeting up your r airplane for aerial video, but to set up your plane for regular flying and to get the hang rc airplane you can check out rcuniverse.com and chek their forums or you can check out CRASH9 setup here__>Building a Twin Star II for FPV....i just hope your not the only one fronting money for all this becuase the bill is gonna start running up fro all the things you wanna do im sure your classmates will support you too

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250 bucks from the school. Any other money comes from me or Corporate Sponsors. Thanks a lot for the information. I should be working with a Robotics Engineer or an Electric Engineer for the project. (Not really sure what the difference is)

This projects supposed to last me a year so using a premade body probably won't be my best route.

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This projects supposed to last me a year so using a premade body probably won't be my best route.

Even with a pre-made model (ARF), the project is complicated enough to keep an experienced fellow busy for many months. Perhaps years. :) So, I vote for a ARF model kit too. Use the saved time for all the other things you have to design, build, and debug.

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  • 2 weeks later...

exactly as Mark said, but I like to add:

I have seen 10mW systems on video clips showing a useable range

supperior to what I have with a 500mW system,

Conclution: mW is not all.

I have seen useable ranges from 800meters to 8km with 500mW systems,

so the end results vary quite alot, depending on all the factors Mark mention.

the most normal with stock whip antennas is 1-2km useable range

and a few small dropouts when plane and receiver is in bad angles to each other.

we can do tons of things to awoid drop-outs, please read on and on on this forum.

also people are not the same, some are really picky and nothing is newer good enought, while others can live with quite alot of noise and dropouts and poor out of focus picture quality.

you see a huge difference in the cost for cams and video stuff,

there is a reason for this (most of the time)

if you always get the most expensive top gear you can find,

I bet you will also get the best quality picture with the best range.

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