You must Sign-in or Register to post messages in the Hobby Squawk community
Registration is FREE and only takes a few moments

Register now

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

E-Flite Opterra

Collapse
X
Collapse
First Prev Next Last
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • E-Flite Opterra

    My E-Flite Opterra arrived yesterday, and it's now ready to fly. The most difficult part was actually getting the inner styrofoam box out of the outer cardboard box. Glue spots held it tight in place and I ended up cutting the outer box to get to the model.

    The model is well packaged and it would be difficult for the contents to become damaged through normal handling. However this can happen on occasion, but mine arrived perfect and ready to assemble.

    The model have been designed as a flying camera platform and it is possible to fit a wide variety of camera's and FPV equipment. For those who haven't seen it yet. The Opterra is a flying wing in a pusher configuration. The motor is fitted in the center section of the fuselage and it's equipped with a folding prop. it has a wing span of 2 meters and it is made from the normal E-Flite foam. The model has been designed for hand launch, so no undercarriage is supplied or available.

    My model is the BNF version and the RX is already configured for the model. If you follow the simple steps in the instruction manual for setting up a Spektrum TX, you are not required to mix or adjust anything. It has all been done for you in the RX.

    Assembly of the model literary takes around 10 minutes. The model is made up of ten major components and these are as follows.

    Fuselage, left and right wing panels, wing tips, wing center fins and two carbon fiber tubes to join the wings to the fuselage. Oh, yes, fuselage hatch cover.

    The wing tips fit into the wing panels and are secured in place by a plastic pin which passes through the wing and the tip and a half turn of the pin locks it in place. The carbon tubes slide through the fuselage and the main wing panels together with the wing fins slide onto the tubes. They are secured by a simple plastic pin the same as the wing tips.

    Basically thats it. All that is left to do is balance the model, bind the TX to the RX and go and fly it. Very simple indeed.

    You will have to add some nose weight if you are not fitting a camera. However various weights are included with the model for balancing purposes. Also included are different nose cones designed for use with various cameras and FPV systems.

    If you are looking for a dedicated flying camera platform, or something a little different. Then this may well be the model for you.

    I will include photos and the flight report in due course after I have flown the model.

    Martin.

  • #2
    I'm interested in what you think about it, Martin! Beware that prop on launch. The model looks great though and I was thinking about jumping into one, or get another Radian. I want something slow with lights for evening flights.
    Live Q&A every Tuesday and Friday at 9pm EST on my Twitch Livestream

    Live chat with me and other RC Nuts on my Discord

    Camp my Instagram @Alpha.Makes

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Alpha,

      I am very aware of pusher props and the damage they can inflict on one's hand in a launch. My technique is to launch the model as a glider and then open the throttle. That way the hand does not get caught.

      I will give a full flight report in due course on it though. I will try and get out with it over the weekend with a bit of luck. I will also take pictures as well.

      Martin.

      Comment


      • #4
        Those wings are pretty awesome for FPV, I have a mako from rmrc, I throw it like a baseball with full throttle on. My hand is clear every time, and goes directly to my transmitter without a problem. I also do the same launch with my mini skyhunter as well. Here is a video: https://youtu.be/T2xMO3JgzJc

        Comment


        • #5
          Mine is all ready to go. Just waiting for the weather to warm up a bit. Maybe the maiden will come next week. I'm using a 3300mah, 3s battery and no additional weights were needed. I've kept the stock nose cone that it came with for the time being. I'm going to put a downward looking camera through that hole in the belly. I'll use the plane for "search and rescue" missions for lost planes. I may one day install a flight controller like the Bigaole and also add a Lemon telemetry unit.
          Note that the instructions in the manual regarding the switch position for "launch" and "AS3X" are backwards. Horizon has said they will issue a correction very soon and also do a video to show what they mean. Personally, it doesn't really matter, you know which position the switch is in by the fact that in "launch" mode, you get a few degrees of UP elevator to help it get going with ease. The true AS3X stability position on the switch is the one where the elevons do nothing till you blip the throttle, like most AS3X planes. That initializes the stability control. In launch mode, the self leveling is quite evident even without blipping the throttle first.

          Comment


          • #6
            Very interesting this FPV stuff. May have to look into it this coming spring.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Wayne@MotionRC View Post
              Very interesting this FPV stuff. May have to look into it this coming spring.
              I do the quads and planes but for me the planes are the best, it's great to get out and explore...I have a Hawk Sky that I fly into another state from my airstrip :)

              Click image for larger version

Name:	20161204_000935898_iOS.jpg
Views:	1103
Size:	121.9 KB
ID:	54224

              Click image for larger version

Name:	20161204_000943241_iOS.jpg
Views:	1070
Size:	117.7 KB
ID:	54223
              TiredIron Aviation
              Tired Iron Military Vehicles

              Comment


              • #8
                Exactly!^^

                Comment


                • #9
                  I've had several flights on my Opterra now that the weather has warmed up a bit. The "launch" mode is a beautiful thing. Keeping it in launch mode allows the plane to glide optimally, power off. Going to the AS3X mode allows for some impressive aerobatics for such a large model. Here is a video taken of my plane by a flying buddy this morning. The landing is not really that fast but when the plane gets to within about a foot off the deck, ground effect causes it to hang "forever". It just doesn't want to drop that last foot or so. This is a terrific flying aircraft and so easy to get it in the air. It has enough mounting locations for at least 4 onboard cameras. This will now become my video platform.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Here's my flight today using my Mobius hat cam. (Cut out a bunch of stuff when the plane got lost in the white cloud.) Going to install air brakes to slow down the landing. They worked great on my old X8 wing. Hope they do the same for this one. I'll also eventually add a Return Home module and telemetry.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Super smooth, I like it

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi Xviper2,

                        Adding an auto pilot to a fixed wing aircraft certainly adds another dimension to your flying.

                        Martin.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Martin.MotionRC View Post
                          Hi Xviper2,

                          Adding an auto pilot to a fixed wing aircraft certainly adds another dimension to your flying.

                          Martin.
                          Martin, yes, it does. It takes a lot of the guesswork and "finger" work out of a complicated set of flight parameters. I suppose, in a way, the "launch" mode on this plane is a sort of simplified version of an autopilot. It self levels, gives it UP elevator, and limits the amount of bank and pitch angle that the sticks can output. I used to fly with a guy who did commercial aerial videography with his small fleet of X8s. He programs in all the way points he wants the plane to fly over, the altitude along the way and where it must return to and land itself. It can even regulate the throttle during the trip to maintain airspeed and altitude. He only needed to crank it up and launch it. Now, that's full autopilot. But, as a sport hobbyist, where's the fun in that?
                          One of these days, I'm going to rev this thing up, put the Tx on the table and throw the plane. Then leisurely come back and pick up the Tx. I'm sure the other guys will drop their jaws in amazement.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I have been doing some modding to my Opterra of late. The 2 of us who fly the Opterra at my field have noted that this plane comes in pretty hot for landing. Once it gets to about 2 feet off the deck, it seems to float "forever". During this time of year, our plowed field is somewhat short so the landing has to be precise or we run into a big ridge of snow. I decided to take the spoilers off an old broken set of Mystique RES wings and cut them down a bit and install them on the Opterra. I haven't had a chance to fly it yet due to the weather but if it's anything like my old X8 wing with airbrakes, the Opterra should slow down and lose lift quite dramatically to achieve a shorter landing.
                            I've also decided to install a "Return to Home" module (Bigaole) as this thing can get quite far away and high up very easily and quickly. Losing sight of it takes just a blink of the eye. The RTH gives added insurance to bring it back to make it easier to locate it. However, not wishing to lose the "LAUNCH" mode, I don't want to eliminate the stock RX. Hooking up a Bigaole inline with a pre-configured AR636A is not possible because the elevon mixing is done within the Rx and the Bigaole. You can't do an elevon mix to a signal that's already mixed. Therefore, I've incorporated a dual receiver set-up using a HobbyKing "Buddy Box". This, in effect, separates the signals into 2 different paths, allowing the Bigaole to be spliced into one of them. Once I get all the components (Bigaole on the way), the first test flight will be very interesting.
                            Also added Lemon telemetry to know altitude, battery voltage, RX voltage, amp draw, air temp.
                            Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_2803.JPG
Views:	1063
Size:	97.3 KB
ID:	60438Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_2805.JPG
Views:	1040
Size:	112.0 KB
ID:	60439
                            Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_2806.JPG
Views:	954
Size:	94.4 KB
ID:	60440

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hello Xviper 2,

                              I have never heard of Bigole GPS system. It will be interesting to know how well it works. Personally I've used a couple of different autopilot flight control systems and they seems to work very well, although some of them can be quite complex and involved in setting them up to work correctly.

                              Martin

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                What kind of range are you able to get? Obviously further than line of sight. Are you running an extra antenna?

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Martin.MotionRC View Post
                                  Hello Xviper 2,

                                  I have never heard of Bigole GPS system. It will be interesting to know how well it works. Personally I've used a couple of different autopilot flight control systems and they seems to work very well, although some of them can be quite complex and involved in setting them up to work correctly.

                                  Martin
                                  The original of this type of device was from HobbyKing (Turnigy T1000FC). That version could not be turned off and limiting stabilization was always on. It was either stabilized/limiter, heading hold/altitude hold and RTH. These are no longer available to us but can be purchased from HobbyKing's European warehouse. Their latest version (sold only in Europe) now is the same as the Bigaole, which is available from RC Castle. The "Biggie" has 3 functions: OFF, stabilized/limiter and RTH.
                                  http://www.rc-castle.com/index.php?r...roduct_id=4922
                                  It is quite cheap by comparison to other flight controllers that can "bring a plane home". They also have one for multicopters. I've got the Turnigy in 2 of my planes and the Biggie in another 2. Cheap enough that you can put one in every plane that you worry about losing. They are great on sailplanes and planes that are generally meant for FPV or aerial video as these tend to quickly go beyond sight. They are quite simple to use requiring only the wing type to be selected and the gains to be set correctly. "Home" position is a push of the button and will remember that location till a new home is selected. This product has actually "saved" and brought home many planes in our small flying group. As soon as one loses sight of his plane, throw the switch and set the throttle and the plane will fly back to the "home" location at the last altitude when the switch is thrown and circle overhead. Most of us see it coming back long before it begins to circle.
                                  When flying similar planes (sailplanes) together in the sky at once, it can be easy to blink and fly someone else's plane. By the time this is realized, your own plane is nowhere to be found. That's when you throw the switch. You can spend forever looking for your plane in the sky and never find it.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by putput View Post
                                    What kind of range are you able to get? Obviously further than line of sight. Are you running an extra antenna?
                                    The range is dependent upon the receiver as that's what switches the Biggie to the different modes. Most Spektrum full range Rx's can fly several miles away although you'd never see the plane before that happens. If you couple the Biggie with a failsafe receiver like some of the Spektrums and the Lemon failsafe ones, you will be covered for "out of range" as the failsafe will go to whatever switch positions and throttle you set when it's bound. Although this can happen in some high powered FPV set ups, the idea is to not let it get that far away. We use it for making the plane turn around and fly back to us when we've lost sight of it, which can happen at close range sometimes - bad lighting, clouds, flying someone else's plane, etc. Once you get out of the habit of spending minutes trying to find it in the air and just throwing the switch and setting throttle, your chances of seeing the plane again is very good - look up and it should be circling overhead. My you, if your battery is near the end of the flight time, it won't have enough power to fly home if it's really far away. But it will "glide" as far as it can while coming back.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Here is a video I made some years ago, when this device was fairly new to the market. It was a sort of precursor to the "self leveling", Spektrum SAFE technologies we see everywhere today. View the video in full screen. You won't see the plane the whole time as it's far away at times, but listen to my narrative so you have an idea of what the plane is doing. This was when the T1000FC couldn't be turned off and that's why the "Buddy Box" is used. Today's Bigaole can be turned off on one of the switch positions.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Had a chance to test out the Opterra today with it's new spoilers. These things really aid in shortening the landing run. In the video, you can see I could come in and about 30 feet above ground, deploying full spoilers dropped the Opterra in a very controlled manner (in LAUNCH mode) and touched down in a very short distance. Normally, from that height and that point in the landing strip, the Opterra would have over-shot the runway and flew over the hill at the end. If it was a couple of feet off the ground, it would have floated almost to the base of that little hill before stopping (maybe).

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X