66% or better

Trashplane

[Flyboy258] shows us that hobby R/C airplanes can be built from trash relatively easily. A bit of old tarp and a simple frame work as the body.  The rudder is made from old foam packaging.  It seems to fly pretty well considering the lack of official design, or aerodynamic features.

[via Makezine]

R/C airplane motors from computer trash

Here’s something that the R/C airplane crowd might think of as old news.  These directions show us how to rework floppy drive and CD Rom motors to be high power airplane motors.  There are several listed, with details on each, but those unfamiliar might want to start with the most basic CD Rom version. It covers winding your own copper and installing the magnets in the “bell”, putting it all together and mounting it. This is a great writeup for those who haven’t seen this done before. If you want something even simpler though, you might enjoy the homopolar motor post. If you’re more advanced, they have tips for you too on machining and balancing the motors as well as winding density.

Homemade UAV

uav

[Terence Bordelon] sent in his impressive UAV (Unmanned Arial Vehicle). The hack is a culmination of his other projects. It can be turned to fully automatic at the flip of a switch. It will fly itself to gps way points, land, and take off. The UAV has a range of 100km thanks to his home built RF Unit which runs on ham bands. The brains of the setup is his custom IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit). The unit is controlled by his ground station which either allows him to fly it normally or toggle through the various modes.  [Terrence] is also a game developer and has worked on many popular titles such as Zoo Tycoon 2 and Ratchet and Clank.

Home made R/C system

[dunk] sent his home made Radio Control system. It is constructed from a Playstation 2 controller, an Atmega 2561, microcontroller, some RF modules and various servos and motors. It seems to work pretty well. You can get all the schematics and source code on his site. Several people have submitted a similar project which involves an iPhone and a helicopter, but that one is a bit dubious, mainly due to it’s lack of detail.

Arduino RC airplane

arduino_airplane

[Olivier] told us about this fantastic project where he built his own RC airplane. The airplane itself is nothing special, it is the controls that are worth paying attention to. He used an Arduino Diecemilla , some XBee transceivers, and a SparkFun Wee. The main site is a general overview, but there are links to more detailed breakdowns of how to build some of the parts. There are several videos of him flying it as well.

RC plane sequence caller


Reader [Kelly Regan] flies large scale RC planes, but would often need someone call out flight sequences while rehearsing. Not wanting to impose on fellow club members, [Kelly] built a sequencer caller from a cheap MP3 player. It just required extending the FWD key to a pin header. Those pins are connected to a custom switch on the back of the controller. Each maneuver is recorded with 30 seconds of padding and then added to a playlist. Once the maneuver is complete, a quick press of the button moves on to the next track. It’s always nice to see people building devices that the consumer electronics industry probably wouldn’t.