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Multi-function boards

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  • Multi-function boards

    It seems lots of planes are coming out with multi-function mixing/lighting boards.

    This idea may simplify things by reducing the number of different boards (or at least the complexity of special boards for specific models.)

    How about putting the lighting on one board and any mixing/sequencing on another?
    Certainly the lighting boards would be capable of being standardized with maybe one or two jumper settings to do what is appropriate for many models
    Mixing/sequencing per model could just be jumpers and/or pots to control timing.

    Then those of us who don't use the sequencing/mixing, instead using advanced computer radios, can pull the other board out, removing some unwanted weight, making space for a gyro or something else we may want (like a separate RX system battery)

    Goal being to help both sides (production and purchaser) reducing the number of different boards which would make the per board cost less (higher numbers of any one board makes it cheaper per board) Reducing the number of different boards you have to stock and increasing the ease of doing something different for the end users.

    I'm now at the point of only light being hooked up to the multi-function board in my F-14. That's a large board doing very little.
    FF gliders and rubber power since 1966, CL 1970-1990, RC since 1975.

    current planes from 1/2 oz to 22 lbs

  • #2
    I agree. However, the market that MRC appears to be shooting for is the beginner and intermediate flier. Having a plug and play system that just works is perfect for that. Us old salt's can just unplug stuff and go around it if need be.

    On the L-39 I was grateful for the Blue Box. When I added a couple lights to the plane, the controller was built in.
    Meridian Aeromodelers, Meridian MS

    YouTube Channel "Seaviper RC"
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCG0...-k6oK0MIQZVpA/

    Comment


    • #3
      You're right, Seaviper. From a mass market point of view, I made the call that a few people choosing to remove a blue box that doesn't weigh much and didn't cost much is easier than expecting everyone to manage a tangle of wires themselves. Our target market is the convenience of PNP, the added benefit being factory wiring is covered under factory warranty. Additionally, the new MFCBs add functionality that give pilots options, such as your example of adding additional LEDs without adding additional devices.

      I'd add that Freewing wasn't the first to consolidate its wires in foam PNPs. One example is FMS, who has used multi-connectors that pre-date Freewing by a couple years. In fact it was based on customer feedback and their requests that we added the blue box in the first place to Freewing models in ~2014... Before that time, models like the Stinger 90 and early 80mms arrived with a tangle of wires and without any baked in LED solution. Another good comparison is the old Freewing B-17's wiring (without a blue box) versus the newer B-24 wiring (with blue box). The new style setup process is considerably simplified for the end user.

      Comment


      • #4
        Alpha, I like the idea of 'The Box' as those assist in eliminating some wiring mess and allow quick disconnect, but are these going to allow us newbies to adjust light timing and gear door sequencing? I notice almost all the aircraft now come with some nav lights, goodie lights, and gear doors. Best, LB
        Captain: Got any ideas?
        F/O: Actually not.
        — Captain Chesley B 'Sully' Sullenberger III and F/O Jeff Skiles—

        Comment


        • #5
          I love these "boxes". I can see the day coming when all a modeler has to do at the field is plug in the wings and that's it - go fly the thing. I'm not what you call a "newb" but I remember that when I was, worrying about the sequence of blinky lights and door sequencers was the last thing on my mind. It is still the case for me today, even though I can easily yank out that controller and do all that stuff myself.
          FMS has the right idea with their latest F7F. Plug in the wings and those bullets match up and it's ready to go (except for maybe one more plug per side). If only they got it right as some people had problems with the plug system making the proper contacts. Then comes the FW/FL B-24. It is my least favorite plane to take to the field, not because I don't like the plane but because of all those bloody connections - 8 power connections and 2 throttle plugs, plus ............. Unlike some guys at the field, I don't like spending all that time messing with my planes before getting them into the air. Those other guys love it because it gives them the time to BS with the boys. If I want to BS with the guys, I'll meet them at Starbucks. All that yapping turns a 3 hour day at the field into a 5 hour day at the field and it's not mostly flying, which is why I go there.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Elbee View Post
            Alpha, I like the idea of 'The Box' as those assist in eliminating some wiring mess and allow quick disconnect, but are these going to allow us newbies to adjust light timing and gear door sequencing? I notice almost all the aircraft now come with some nav lights, goodie lights, and gear doors. Best, LB

            Hey Elbee, both MFCBs have options for both Single Stage and Dual Stage door sequencing. As far as "light timing", the flash intervals can't be changed by the user (if that's what you're talking about). If you're talking about timing a landing light to only turn on when the gear is down, then yes, the MFCBs also have ports for that function, called "Take Off Light". The smaller MFCB-E, for example, has two ports specifically for this purpose.

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            • #7
              Xviper, I love that you say "yapping". I thought I was the only one.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by fhhuber View Post
                It seems lots of planes are coming out with multi-function mixing/lighting boards.

                This idea may simplify things by reducing the number of different boards (or at least the complexity of special boards for specific models.)

                How about putting the lighting on one board and any mixing/sequencing on another?
                Certainly the lighting boards would be capable of being standardized with maybe one or two jumper settings to do what is appropriate for many models
                Mixing/sequencing per model could just be jumpers and/or pots to control timing.

                Then those of us who don't use the sequencing/mixing, instead using advanced computer radios, can pull the other board out, removing some unwanted weight, making space for a gyro or something else we may want (like a separate RX system battery)

                Goal being to help both sides (production and purchaser) reducing the number of different boards which would make the per board cost less (higher numbers of any one board makes it cheaper per board) Reducing the number of different boards you have to stock and increasing the ease of doing something different for the end users.

                I'm now at the point of only light being hooked up to the multi-function board in my F-14. That's a large board doing very little.
                Fhhuber, I re-read your post and wanted to point out that Freewing's older LED driver system did just that --the LED driver and the Gear sequencer were separate. If you're only looking for a small box to drive your F-14's LEDs, consider getting the older bit of kit.

                https://www.motionrc.com/collections...-controller-v3

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by xviper View Post
                  Then comes the FW/FL B-24. It is my least favorite plane to take to the field, not because I don't like the plane but because of all those bloody connections - 8 power connections and 2 throttle plugs, plus .............
                  I initially had the same thoughts as you on the B-24 but after taking it to the field a couple of times I've got it down now so it's assembled and ready to fly in 10 minutes, same for the disassembly.

                  Originally posted by xviper View Post
                  All that yapping turns a 3 hour day at the field into a 5 hour day at the field and it's not mostly flying, which is why I go there.
                  Yapping, ha ha, I see that Alpha commented that he says that, you guys are not alone, I say it from time to time myself.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Alpha.MotionRC View Post
                    Hey Elbee, both MFCBs have options for both Single Stage and Dual Stage door sequencing. As far as "light timing", the flash intervals can't be changed by the user (if that's what you're talking about). If you're talking about timing a landing light to only turn on when the gear is down, then yes, the MFCBs also have ports for that function, called "Take Off Light". The smaller MFCB-E, for example, has two ports specifically for this purpose.
                    Alpha, Does MotionRC build another control module that allows adjustable flash intervals for a series of lights? I am thinking for the F-4 I'd like to sequence the 'approach indicator lights' (Christmas Tree) on the nose gear door and also the Spitfire/Seafire variant has 3 belly light indicators for a similar system. Best, LB
                    Captain: Got any ideas?
                    F/O: Actually not.
                    — Captain Chesley B 'Sully' Sullenberger III and F/O Jeff Skiles—

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Alpha.MotionRC View Post
                      Xviper, I love that you say "yapping". I thought I was the only one.
                      "Yapping" is the noise that comes out of "clap traps". No, I don't want to hear about your grandkid's tonsilectomy or what your wife said to you when the UPS truck came with a big box ...................... AGAIN! and how you need to hide the next box better so she doesn't ever see it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by dkalwishky View Post
                        I initially had the same thoughts as you on the B-24 but after taking it to the field a couple of times I've got it down now so it's assembled and ready to fly in 10 minutes, same for the disassembly.
                        I have mine down to 10 minutes, too. BUT, in that time, my flying buddies have flown twice.

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                        • #13
                          Bingo....!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by xviper View Post
                            I have mine down to 10 minutes, too. BUT, in that time, my flying buddies have flown twice.
                            It's interesting how we all look at things differently. It takes longer than 10 minutes to get my first set of batteries charged so for me it's not wasted time. I used to charge them in my office a hour or so before I'd leave work but it became a hassle to lug everything into my office then there was the worry that if I stepped out and one of them caught fire that I'd burn the place down.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dkalwishky View Post

                              It's interesting how we all look at things differently. It takes longer than 10 minutes to get my first set of batteries charged so for me it's not wasted time. I used to charge them in my office a hour or so before I'd leave work but it became a hassle to lug everything into my office then there was the worry that if I stepped out and one of them caught fire that I'd burn the place down.
                              It is interesting, isn't it. Charging batteries is time I spend in front of the TV watching a favorite recorded program. The charging time doesn't invade my consciousness. It's just doing it in the background. When I get to the field, that time is precious as I've got things to do in the other parts of the day. (I don't make a day of it when flying.) I don't mind the "yapping" when it comes to helping another flyer with his plane or talking about what the next "bestest" plane is going to be, but the most enjoyment I get is from actually being in the air with my buddies as we fly together in formation no matter what we fly. Of all of us who fly at that field, I'm one of the few who have the most complicated planes with respect to putting together and taking apart. Most guys simply get to the field, pull out a complete plane, throw in a battery and they are in the air within minutes of turning their car off. I have many of these planes myself, but I also have more variety of planes. In the summer, I take 4 to 6 planes with me. Only one, maybe two, are so big that they must travel dismantled. Up until the B-24, the most tedious to fly are my big sailplanes and those take less than 5 minutes to get ready. Even my big Corsair and CZ T-28 don't take more than 5 minutes. I look very carefully at how much it takes to take apart and put together any plane before I buy. The B-24 was one that I felt I "had to have" and at that time, it was time I bought another plane from MotionRC. The next large plane I buy will have to have "ease of assembly at the field". Those control boxes are like "sliced bread".

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