After a few painful hand launches of my Raptor 140, I decided there had to be a better way to reliably and consistently get my large and slightly heavy airplane in the air. I built a bungee launcher and installed launch hooks in the 140a and 140b, and tested it out!

It launched perfectly, just enough kick to get the airplane in the air. It will prove to be a much more reliable and predictable mechanism for launching, only added about 30 grams to the airplane, and only takes about 60 seconds to set up. Plus, it is so much fun to use, feels like I'm about to launch it into space or something.

Next week I'll attempt to fly a marathon - 42km (26mi)!

See you next week!

-Trent

Set Up Info:

Raptor 140b Stats:
Weight: 1780g
Max Flight Time: 80min
Max Range: 75km
Stall Speed: 30kph
Cruise Speed: 95kph
Max Speed: 135kph
Radio Range: 1.5km

The equipment used---
Raptor 140 airplane: http://store.mygeekshow.com/product-p/raptor-140-kit.htm

Radio Tx: ParkeFlyer Turnigy 9x Tx: http://parkeflyer.com/
Telemtry: 915mhz 100mW 3DR http://store.3drobotics.com/products/3dr-radio-telemetry-kit-915-mhz
Laptop:

Autopilot: APM2.6 https://store.3drobotics.com/products/apm-2-6-kit-1
Reciever: 6ch FlySky http://www.hobbypartz.com/79p-r6b-receiver.html
Telemtry: 915mhz 100mW 3DR http://store.3drobotics.com/products/3dr-radio-telemetry-kit-915-mhz
Battery: (2) 5.0Ah 20C Turnigy Lipo: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__9184__turnigy_5000mah_3s...
ESC: 60A Brushless http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__32820__TURNIGY_Plush_60a...
Motor: 3542 1450kv brushless http://hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewItem.asp?idProduct=38700
Prop: 10x7 Carbon Fiber Folding http://www.hobby-lobby.com/10x7_carbon_fiber_cam_blade_798_prd1.htm
Servos: 11g digital http://hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewItem.asp?idProduct=42620
Onboard camera: http://www.ebay.com/itm/16-V2-Lens-D-808-Key-Chain-Video-Camera-/38...

Learn More:
Raptor Details: http://www.mygeekshow.com/theairplanes/Raptor140.html
USA Trip Details: http://www.mygeekshow.com/usatrip/

Follow the Show:
Website: http://www.mygeekshow.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MyGeekShow
Twitter: http://twitter.com/mygeekshow
Google+:http://plus.google.com/116950154481685699344
Skype: MyGeekShow
UStream: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/mygeekshow

Filmed, Edited, Produced and Published by Trent in Arkansas, USA

Views: 1386


Moderator
Comment by Gary Mortimer on December 14, 2013 at 7:59am

The bungee is a great way to lunch I am always surprised that more folks don't use it. Much easier to set up than a rail. Firing it at your car well um..... If I am not bungee launching I always find a slope however slight to launch from. Instant air.

Comment by Trent at MyGeekShow on December 14, 2013 at 8:37am

Gary: Yeah... I think I'm pretty sold on it! Its effective and actually pretty fun!

Comment by R. D. Starwalt on December 14, 2013 at 9:07am

(Trent's Manager): So, Trent, umm, why are you so late for work today?

(Trent): Well my c-c-c-car got stuck in the snow, in a field.

(TM): Oh were you forced off the road?

(T): Oh no, I was t-t-t-testing my new RC p-p-pane launcher.

(TM) : I don't understand.

(T): I use my c-c-c-ar as an anchor for a b-b-big rubber band! It works g-g-great! But it also took me a long time to g-g-get the b-b-b-roken glass out of the d-d-d-river's seat before I could get in the c-c-car.

(TM): I don't understand, why was there broken glass in your car seats?

(T): Well, I ha-d-d-d a linkage break loose on my RC p-p-plane on one launch and the p-p-plane busted out the rear window and exited through the c-c-c-car and out the front window! I got it all on vid-d-deo! It should go v-v-v-viral once I post it on YouT-t-tube!

(TM): Ah, that explains why your teeth are chattering and you are shivering so much.

(T): I kn-n-n-now. I sh-sh-should warm up in a litt-t-t-tle b-b-bit. Oh! The p-p-p-plane had v-v-very little d-d-d-amage! This d-design is aws-s-some!

(Doug): Well done Trent but be careful!

-=Doug

Comment by Trent at MyGeekShow on December 14, 2013 at 9:19am

@Doug: Ha ha! I died laughing while reading this! You know what is really funny, this whole thing is actually 95% accurate. I actually got very stuck out in the field. Took me a good 15 minutes and multiple attempts to get out, and I was late to work, and I did show them the video and they thought I was crazy. 

Last funny thing: I went to the field and did it again the next morning. : )

Comment by Joakim Mato on December 15, 2013 at 4:35am

Would you be kind and make a video how you made the plane side mechanism? : )

Comment by Trent at MyGeekShow on December 15, 2013 at 6:43am

Swift: Yeah, I'm just happy I have good car insurance. I wonder if it covers RC aircraft impacts? :)

Joakim: Yes! I'll do that this week.


Moderator
Comment by Gary Mortimer on December 15, 2013 at 2:10pm

Looking at the video again, is your speed controller under the covering material?? If it is head will be an issue. I could not tell from the real facing camera shot.

Comment by Quadzimodo on December 15, 2013 at 4:11pm
Gary - One could be forgiven for thinking that head will be an issue for anyone who spends their spare time in a deserted snow covered field, using a car as the anchor point for a new launching mechanism for their rc plane. Especially if it is the missus' vehicle.
Trent - love your work, always informative and entertaining.
Comment by Antonio Alfaro on December 15, 2013 at 4:42pm

Hi Trent. I like your enthusiasm ! A couple of questions: 1- Are you using autotake off ? 2- What was wind conditions ? I am not comfortable with my X8 wing and your Raptor 140 is getting my attention, when will be in stock again?  

Comment by Trent at MyGeekShow on December 19, 2013 at 12:49pm

All: I made a video on how to build the bungee launcher: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUxSE8ogK_s

Gary: Sorry if the video was misleading, the 140a you saw didn't have an esc, and the connectors you saw on the 140b were the XT60's connected to the current sensor. The ESC has great exposure/cooling, while also being sealed by tape.

Quadzimodo: Very true, I could be seen as insane! : )

Antonio: Thank you! Its so much fun... 1: I'm not using auto take off, using manual. 2: Wind was about 4mph, yesterday I flew it and used the bungee launcher in 16mph constant to 33mph gusts and it performed perfectly. Video coming Saturday (Episode 136). 140's are in stock now, just a slight delay on delivery, usually 1-2 days, right now at a 7 days as I respond to demand. I've never flown an X8, but I can tell you the 140 can easily carry 2kg+ and is, at least for me, the best airframe I've ever flown. Its extremely durable (I drove a car over the 140a's wings and flew it right away!)

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