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Old 02-03-2012, 02:03 PM   #41
jamesb72
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I figured this out, with help from Clint at Castle.

We've realised the AR7200BX won't output any throttle signal until it see's throttle zero (for safety), whereas the ESC needs to power up with full throttle to set endpoints or clear datalog, so you need to go through a two stage sequence to power up AR7200BX then ESC to allow you to set throttle endpoints or clear datalog.

You need a seperate power source so you can power up/initialise the AR7200BX BEFORE plugging power to the ESC - I did this with seperate BEC and two batteries, but you could do this with a rx pack if easier (you will need a servo extension lead with red wire snipped if you normally use internal BEC to prevent your ESC/BEC fighting the external power and overloading BEC).

To set endpoints:
- TX on, set throttle ATV 100/100, and linear normal thottle curve, power up AR7200BX from BEC or flight pack (not ESC which needs to stay off), wait for AR7200BX to initialise, move throttle to low stick (so AR7200BX starts outputting throttle signal)
- reduce throttle ATVs to 50/50, move throttle to full stick only now can you power up ESC, then you can set endpoints as normal (full throttle at ESC power up, then gradually increase throttle high ATV until ESC beeps, then drop to low throttle, gradually increase throttle low ATV until ESC beeps again, power off ESC and your done).

Similarly to clear datalog, you need to power up AR7200BX from BEC with ESC off, go to zero throttle, then go to idle2 (100% throttle), then power up ESC and wait for beeps to show datalog has cleared.

In practice unless you happen to have a battery plug/socket on BEC feed from ESC socket (as I luckily have) this may be harder than using castlelink to clear datalog memory, but it is an option.

I was powering up AR7200BX with Tx throttle already maxed (as I do with other receivers) or with throttle hold on (as I do normally so ESC won't arm), so no throttle signal was being outputted from AR7200BX (which was still waiting for a zero throttle signal) to set endpoints or clear datalog.

Last edited by jamesb72; 02-04-2012 at 09:50 AM..
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:10 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesb72 View Post
I figured this out, with some help from Clint at Castle.

We've realised the AR7200BX won't output any throttle signal until it see's throttle zero (for safety), so you need to go through a strange sequence to set endpoints or clear datalog - you also need a seperate power source so you can power up/initialise the AR7200BX BEFORE plugging power to the ESC - I did this with seperate BEC and two batteries, but you could do this with a rx pack if easier (you will need an extension with red wire snipped if you normally use internal BEC to prevent your ESC/BEC fighting the external power and overloading BEC).

To set endpoints:
- TX on, set throttle ATV 100/100, power up AR7200BX from BEC or flight pack (not ESC which needs to stay off), wait for AR7200BX to initialise, move throttle to low stick (so AR7200BX starts outputting throttle signal)
- reduce throttle ATVs to 50/50, move throttle to full stick only now can you power up ESC, then you can set endpoints as normal.

Similarly to clear datalog, you need to power up AR7200BX from BEC with ESC off, go to zero throttle, then go to idle2 (100% throttle), then power up ESC and wait for beeps to show datalog has cleared.

In practice unless you happen to have a plug/socket on BEC feed from ESC socket (as I luckily have) this may be harder than using castlelink to clear datalog, but it is an option.

I was powering up AR7200BX with Tx throttle already maxed (as I do with other receivers) or with throttle hold on (as I do normally so ESC won't arm), so no throttle signal was being outputted to set endpoints or clear datalog.
Thank you very much for clearing that up, let's wait the test results in other CC ESCs. By the way, what ESC did you use?
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:15 PM   #43
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Thank you very much for clearing that up, let's wait the test results in other CC ESCs. By the way, what ESC did you use?
I am 99% sure this will work for all ESC's, I used ICE 100 (not lite) but they all share the same issue, that ESC needs to power up at full throttle, the AR7200BX cannot output any throttle signal until it see's zero throttle, so you need to do a two stage power up with a BEC/external rx battery, making sure you have throttle low for AR7200BX to initialise/arm throttle, before going to throttle high for ESC power up to set endpoints or clear datalog memory.

Thanks to the other posters who mentioned seperate BEC/flight pack, as that was a big piece of the puzzle - and they were right, you cannot do this without a seperate BEC/flight pack!

Last edited by jamesb72; 02-03-2012 at 03:19 PM..
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:36 PM   #44
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Very glad that someone got to the bottom of this. For anyone who doesn't have a receiver pack or extra bec lying around here is a $0.43 cent solution:

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s..._Rx_Pack_.html

Cheers
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:53 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by jamesb72 View Post
I am 99% sure this will work for all ESC's, I used ICE 100 (not lite) but they all share the same issue, that ESC needs to power up at full throttle, the AR7200BX cannot output any throttle signal until it see's zero throttle, so you need to do a two stage power up with a BEC/external rx battery, making sure you have throttle low for AR7200BX to power up, before going to throttle high for ESC power up.

Thanks to the other posters who mentioned seperate BEC/flight pack, as that was a big piece of the puzzle - and they were right, you cannot do this without a seperate BEC/flight pack!

Thanks man.

I was working with the castle folks too but we missed the step where you power up the AR7200BX with low throttle via the alternative bec.
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:56 PM   #46
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Well I am glad it is figured out but this is something that needs to be changed in my opinion. The ar7200bx should be changed so it outputs throttle without having to see 0 as the safety nets are already in the esc's Plus that is why we have throttle hold on our radios. This feature in the ar7200bx has to go bye,bye. I sure dont want to have to plug in my esc to the computer every time I want to clear data logs and dont want to mess with fiddling with connectors from the esc to ar7200bx either. Especialy on a nice neat install. Again the safety net is in the esc(has to see 0 to arm) and combined with throttle hold we dont need this feature in the ar7200bx! We live without it when using a seperate rx with regular beastx. I still find it amazing that none of the beta testers complained about this or maybe it was a last minute addition. It must go HA!
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:01 PM   #47
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The ar7200bx should be changed so it outputs throttle without having to see 0 as the safety nets are already in the esc's
I have to agree, why Horizon decided to start this 'SmartSafe' with a heli only receiver is beyond me, they have never bothered with this 'feature' on their other receivers, why start with the one where powering up ESC's with full throttle is required as part of setup for 90% of ESC's on the market- and the ESC's won't arm until they see a zero signal anyway.

Last edited by jamesb72; 02-04-2012 at 09:52 AM..
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:06 PM   #48
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You know the more I think about this the more I have to say that this was an absolute blunder on horizons part. There is absolutey no need for this feature and a total diservice to cc owners or other esc's that may calibrate endpoints similarly. The ice and other cc ecs's are extremely popular and why, because they actually have a very good working governor now and when tweaked just right will keep up with the kontronics and yge esc's. Not everyone can afford or even wants to pay the big, big bucks for kontronics and yge and when it comes to governors that actually do work it is down to cc, kontronics and yge, I would bet the ratio of cc esc;s to the others is 10 fold! Horizon needs to step up and fix this quickly but as of yet I don't think anyone has heard a word from them. Sorry for the rant but this feature was plain foolishness in my opinion. On top of that someone is gonna kill their esc if they plug in a seperate power source and forget removing the red lead to the esc trying to calibrate this, or if they have not read these posts, kill it trying to figure out how to make it work.
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:22 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott s View Post
The ar7200bx should be changed so it outputs throttle without having to see 0
I'm pretty sure the throttle channel works as soon as the unit intalizes no matter where the throttle stick is. When I was testing the the ar7200bx for example I had the servo plugged in and the arm was already centered from the last time it was powerd up. I have the throttle stick up and as soon as the ar7200 booted, the servo moved to where it was supposed to be at.

I need to shoot a video with this plugged into a regular rx and then show the ar7200bx works the same way after it boots!

http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXWGJ8&P=7
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:54 PM   #50
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I'm pretty sure the throttle channel works as soon as the unit intalizes no matter where the throttle stick is. When I was testing the the ar7200bx for example I had the servo plugged in and the arm was already centered from the last time it was powerd up. I have the throttle stick up and as soon as the ar7200 booted, the servo moved to where it was supposed to be at.

I need to shoot a video with this plugged into a regular rx and then show the ar7200bx works the same way after it boots!

http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXWGJ8&P=7
Are you sure you did not power up with throttle hold on and the hold value set to zero. Then flip hold off. If so then the ar7200bx saw 0 and will output throttle but this is of no use for calibration
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:26 PM   #51
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I will test it out tomorrow.
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Old 02-04-2012, 04:14 AM   #52
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I'm pretty sure the throttle channel works as soon as the unit intalizes no matter where the throttle stick is.
I am pretty certain it doesn't hence the problems we've all had

The AR7200BX manual does actually mention this on page 20 SmartSafe, but doesn't make it clear you need to jump through hoops to set endpoints on ESC.

"Smartsafe is a safety feature on the throttle channel only that offers the following benefits:
- prevents electric motors from operating when the receiver only is turned on (no transmitter signal present)
- prevents the speed controller from arming until the throttle is moved to low throttle position after connection is made.
....
SmartSafe sets the throttle to the position it was in during the binding process (normally low throttle or idle)"

I guess if you have bound at full throttle you may have disabled this 'feature' in which case your throttle channel would work from startup - not sure this would be wise though !!

Last edited by jamesb72; 02-04-2012 at 09:52 AM..
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Old 02-04-2012, 04:16 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by scott s View Post
You know the more I think about this the more I have to say that this was an absolute blunder on horizons part.
The 'SmartSafe' safety feature is I think misguided, but I can't criticise Horizon/Spektrum for that - given the litigous markets they operate in.

However not to explain this clearly in instructions is unforgivable, this won't just affect CC ESC's, as most others (Align etc) the ESC needs to learn endpoints and enter programming mode by powering on at full throttle position - which you cannot do without a 2nd power supply and two stage power up to workaround this 'SmartSafe'.

Whats really strange is that Horizon haven't put a note in the instructions, or on websites announcing this extra info, as it will trip a lot of people up I think.

Last edited by jamesb72; 02-04-2012 at 09:46 AM..
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Old 02-04-2012, 01:26 PM   #54
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I find all the drama very entertaining.
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Old 02-06-2012, 11:11 AM   #55
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Does anyone know if horizon is even aware that this problem exists ? How about some you guys who have had this issue and not posted here please do so.
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Old 02-06-2012, 12:02 PM   #56
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I still haven't tested the throttle port to see if it works without having to go low stick. I don't know why you wouldn't start at zero before plugging in the esc but I've had no issues all 4 flights I've had on it.

Power up the ar7200bx and let it boot. I flip throttle hold since I have bail out turned on and power up the esc. Set my heli out on the pad, go to normal which is a zero flat line and the ESC makes the last tone to arm. Go to stunt 1 which is goverend but since I'm comming from zero it has the 6-7 soft start. While I'm flying if I hit throttle hold the motor powers down but I can flip it back for the auto bail out feature.
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Old 02-06-2012, 12:35 PM   #57
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Ya I use the autorotate feature. This is about initial esc calibration and the esc cant see 0 first to do this and apparently the ar7200bx will not send a throttle signal till it sees 0. The two stage power source set up to calibrate the esc is ridiculous and the inability to clear data log from the esc without plugging into a computer is ridiculous.
Someone is gonna fry their esc if they dont temporarily pull the red wire if they plan on using the internal bec. Again where is horizon hobby on this issue?
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Old 02-06-2012, 12:44 PM   #58
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The easiest way round this I feel is to setup as I have, your ESC lead has a battery socket on and a flylead to a battery plug, then your BEC has a battery socket on. For normal flying the flylead is plugged into BEC and you just plug flight pack into ESC socket and everything powers up to fly.

This is probably a good idea anyway, as you can power up the BEC/servo's for setup/testing without esc having power, so no chance of it spooling up unexpectedly - thats why I setup like this on my 550, I just got lucky when I swapped to AR7200BX that it means I can do the two stage startup without messing too much.

To set/clear esc, you plug one battery directly into the BEC, let the AR7200BX initialise, see zero throttle, then flick idle2 for 100% throttle, Then plug a 2nd battery into the ESC and it will then power up with full throttle to clear memory.

This way it only takes a couple of battery connectors and a couple of minutes soldering and you can achieve what you need to.

I suspect Horizon aren't going to release a firmware update for AR7200BX to correct this, and if they did, most people aren't going to spend the money on a USB dongle just to fix this (as by then we will all be used to it and have workarounds in place).
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Old 02-06-2012, 01:04 PM   #59
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for a 250, 450 or 500 class heli where you are using the INTERNAL bec of cc ice esc's because the internal bec is more than adequate for these helis the above you posted does not hold true. This feature if indeed the ar7200bx will not output throttle until it sees 0 is down right ridiculous. Again ya you can calibrate your ecs by doing the double power up thing but how about horizon at least giving some how to here or at least warning people. Smart Safe aint to smart! HA!
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Old 02-06-2012, 01:05 PM   #60
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Its a HH and CC issue. Yes its a pain to calibrate with seperate power but its just a one time thing.

But I use this to make any changes in the ESC, download logged data, and clear the logged data. I just have the lead running out and just plug in the cc link. I don't even have to power up the RX to use the link but I have to power up the ESC

http://castlecreations.com/products/quick_connect.html





http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXZYU2&P=7
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