Aussie Bush Flying


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The aim of this series of adventures in the magazine is to talk about flying in a practical way. With and without the autopilot. The old fashioned stick n rudder method. 

Ever since my Dad and I towed one mile of fishing line (1.6km) between peaks above 5000 feet in the Australian Alps for a powerline company in 1977 part of me still gets bored landing on standard club strips. That model had a wingspan of 6 feet and was powered with an OS 60 with a Graupner tuned pipe. Sankyo 7 ch FM PPM radio, large split flaps and a Rocket City tow release. Camera models shooting stills and movie work with film soon followed then stunt flying for crowd entertainment at major motorsport events, club strips became even less challenging. 

Mirroring what is going on in full size recreational aircraft, and those aforementioned flights, one segment of the hobby that is gaining a following is Cubs with Tundra tyres. An increasing number of manufacturers are marketing a variant. Multiplex started it all and it still leads the pack. 

The Fun Cub XL was set up with two cameras plus a telemetry and stability system. The Eagle Tree Guardian 2D-3D autopilot was fitted to smooth out the bumps that quickly render video footage useless. Given some of the intended locations the other benefit is that should the model inadvertently go behind a line of trees I can apply power, engage the autopilot and initiate a balanced climbing turn until it becomes visual. It is a requirement in Australia Civil aviation regulations that model aircraft must remain visual nevertheless Aviate Navigate Communicate still applies to model aircraft.. Flying the aeroplane always comes first. 

The camera is the new RunCam 2 HD. A reader alerted me to it, thanks Iggy Omiari. What attracted me to this nifty device was its low aerodynamic profile and the 120 degree wide angle lens. In 35mm SLR speak this is considered the widest field of view before appreciable distortion at the edges becomes apparent. Centre weighted and spot metering combined with a 4MP sensor once I get the feel for the settings on each given day this little unit should produce acceptable still shots for the magazine. Ditto for the Eagle Tree Guardian, The radio system is a Hitec Aurora 9. Primary flight controls, two for flap, another combines tow release with cargo doors. Two for the autopilot makes nine. Power for the Hitec telemetry is slaved via a Y lead.  

The past six years I've been selling magazines for a living and the Internet has changed almost everything. Including this business. It's the wild wild west out there in cyberland. Buying or selling. One thing that hasn't changed is flying. This year I plan to record locations from the Fun Cub when travelling to events. 

Whether it be club or park flying, taking off from a farm driveway or flying RC commercially due consideration has been given to ALARP,. Hopefully, during my travels, once I get another camera configured aft the vision will provide a few tips for those interested in using rudder more effectively. Techniques learnt flying simple prop jobs helped dragging the turbine BD5 into the air off a rain soaked grass strip on a practice flight a few days before an airshow at Coldstream Airport. 

Hopefully you might click on my website and purchase a magazine or tell a friend. That's the only pitch if you subscribe to this freeby.

Stephen Green. 

ARN 576621. AMAS #AUS 160. MAAA #AUS 5932.

Below: Multiplex Fun Cub XL - Hitech Aurora 9 radio using nine channels with flap, cargo doors, tow release, Runcam 2 camera, Hitech telemetry, Eagle Tree Guardian autopilot.

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