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Old 03-25-2017, 07:22 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Velos 880 Controllable Cargo Hook

Given the Velos 880 has many possibilities for my own entertainment and learning, and given I really get a big kick out of Imagineering and creating something fun, different and possible useful for my models, I've been at it again.
I also try to keep the modification something that can be built from existing heli parts.
I unfortunately have a lot of spare parts available to me from past crash incidents where I ran out of altitude or run into a tree after running out of ideas on how not to run into either.
In months of staring at the Velos, I can't think of one thing to the existing structure that needs a mod to make it better.

So...the only thing I could do was build something for the Velos to add to its impressive abilities.
Always wanted to long line with my other models but they lacked the power and redundancy I wanted to make it fun and not stressful.

So here we go, the Velos cargo hook.
This is just a teaser photo of what I have in the works for this adventure.
The receiver for the cargo hook pin controlled by the servo will be added today to complete the working assembly.
It was great that I was able to create the cargo hook as part of the massive lower bottom plate for the landing gear, it will be super strong.

So why add the complexity of the controlling servo?
I can because its added weight to the Velos is negligible and if I ever get the load, whatever it may be, hung up in the trees surrounding my flying field it would be good to be able to "punch off the load" to get away from the snag and be able to land safely.

The neighbors cat may want to stay away. Just kidding.

Here's the start to the assembly, the rest of the photos latter...then the video of the neighbors cat at 200 feet...again just kidding, we love the cat.

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Old 03-25-2017, 11:09 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Subscribed Martin! As an aero-engineer also, I've yet to figure out the loads you have designed the housing to expect? Hmmmmmmmm?!!
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Old 03-25-2017, 04:23 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by georgi UK View Post
Subscribed Martin! As an aero-engineer also, I've yet to figure out the loads you have designed the housing to expect? Hmmmmmmmm?!!

Thanks Georgi, I'll try to keep the entertainment level up!

Working with my models I do not apply math to figure out loading of structure and assemblies, for me, that's reserved for my full scale aircraft. When working out the loading details of my models, that's way too much work although it is the proper method.

For my models, when people aren't aboard, I have a masters degree in the applied science of "That Looks Strong Enough".

For my Velos cargo hook let me explain my approach.
First my observed limitations.
1. Although the Velos can lift a great deal of weight it does have limitations.
2. The structure I have the cargo hook designed into can support more weight on the hook than the Velos can lift.
3 The controlling servo has its own limitation in pulling the release pin. Too much weight from the load will bind the pin in its support, stalling the servo and preventing release of the load if needed.

I am betting that I will reach the limitation of the controlling servo before reaching any limitation of the airframe or drive train.
I want to be able to release the load in an emergency or just for fun so building the system to the max takeoff weight limit of the Velos is not what I am after, unless it works out that way.

So I need to figure this out and I don't want to fly the Velos for the experimentation portion of finding limitations, I want to know before the first takeoff with a load.

My approach to this is pretty simple.
I am going to take a sheet of plywood, cut a small round hole in it and position the cargo hook assembly over the hole.
I'll place the Velos next to the cargo hook/landing gear lower bracket to power the servo.
I don't want to stress the carbon fiber gear legs so they will be removed from the cargo hook aluminum bracket.
The load I placed on the hook will be supported solely by the aluminum lower bracket on the plywood sheet and the plywood sheet supported by saw horses.

Then comes the experimenting.
How much weight can I put on the hook before the servo stalls and from my SK and CC logs, how much RX power did the cargo hook use to release of the load?
The cargo hook release pin is a polished steel pin.
The pin supports are aluminum.
The cargo ring will be steel as well so the pin should slide free of the cargo ring even with a large load...im my mind anyway, time will tell.

As far as the support of the load in the lower landing gear bracket, I have designed the holes in the added end plates to position the pin just above and in contact with the existing solid aluminum cross support so "it looks strong enough".

So I hope I haven't left anything to chance and do realize there will be increased loading on the hook when in a fast turn or climb, easy does it until it's fully proven.

Here are the photos of the finished assembly, simple and strong...I think.
There will be follow up as I end testing and move into flight.

The complete assembly:


The cargo hook pin fully engaged in the cargo hook load slot:


The cargo hook pin retracted in the "drop load" position.
There is a sloppy fit of the pin in the supporting holes in the end plates to prevent binding of the pin.


Close up of the cargo hook end plates and pin. Yes I did borrow some Goblin 770 parts for the build.
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Old 03-25-2017, 08:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Awesome!

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Old 03-26-2017, 07:52 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Ground Test

For the curious, if your wondering about the placement or position of the cargo pin in relation to the mast or main shaft, the slot and connection point to the load is directly below the mast center line so no odd CG shift will occur from the suspended load other than that caused by the swinging of the load.

For testing the operation of the hook assembly I have decided to use a bucket, connected as described above and continuously add sand to find the max weight limit for the servos ability to pull the pin and see what power requirement the servo has in doing so...wouldn't want to get in flight, hit the cargo release with a heavy load only to have the FBL go into reset.
That would be a bummer.
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Old 03-26-2017, 02:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Ground Tests Complete

I tested the ability of the cargo hook controlling servo and pin to release the load by ground test.

I wanted to get an idea of what the maximum weight could be hanging on the release pin and still be able to release the load.

I bought a 50lb bag of sand for the test weight thinking I would only use half of it.
I stopped when the bag was empty and I was still able to get a quick, clean release.
I am impressed.
That was a measured total weight of 52lbs hanging on the hook.

I have no intension of flying 52lbs by long line from my Velos.
I just wanted to see what limitation the hook would have in use.
The reality would be that I land the load on the ground first, releasing the tension of the load from the hook, then release the hook from the long line and then land.
It has to be punishing for the servo to pull the pin with that much force against it so I wouldn't do it over and over, but in an emergency, the servo will pull the pin with no issue.

The point of the test was for me to know...now I know.

Here is a shot of my ground test rig as described in an earlier post.


Now on to flight test.
Anyone who has done this, have any pointers?
I would think it would be a good idea to slow the control inputs down in the Skookum.
What about gain?
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Old 03-27-2017, 09:43 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Assembled and ready for flight.

Just a couple shots of the assembled cargo hook and landing gear to the Velos 880 fuselage.
You would think the addition of the servo and pin would be adding weight to the model but because I stopped flying the aluminum gear leg stiffeners and removed them, I am still 40 grams under what my weight was with the stiffeners. So that makes me feel good, still at a good 3D weight and can sling load too.
The Velos offers up too much fun.

Rear belly view:


Front belly view:
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Old 03-28-2017, 02:23 PM   #8 (permalink)
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cool project -> just came across this one.
I did lift about 50lb over a year ago with one of my machines (not using a release mechanism). I had the weight on a long steel line. Biggest issue for me was to keep the heli steady since it was windy and the weight moved around like a pendulum. It was an interesting experience. However I am not sure if I would do it again on the current helis.
The Velos has much more weight on its own so you should be better off.
I was prepared for it since I started with lower weight and increased it step by step. However I wish at the end that I had a release mechanism since the weight was pulling the heli around a bit. So try to stay calm and no hectic moves.
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Old 03-28-2017, 03:07 PM   #9 (permalink)
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When you drop the loaded line from altitude do you think that the loss of weight will make your helicopter shoot up in the air / brief momentary loss of control? If a swinging load causes a panic situation how will this be handled? How will a snag be handled? Will this limit cargo rating, before mechanical release rating? How does a real full scale Helo handle this?

You just want to get that tail out of the tree where it has been for so long....
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Old 03-28-2017, 03:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by im4711 View Post
cool project -> just came across this one.
I did lift about 50lb over a year ago with one of my machines (not using a release mechanism). I had the weight on a long steel line. Biggest issue for me was to keep the heli steady since it was windy and the weight moved around like a pendulum. It was an interesting experience. However I am not sure if I would do it again on the current helis.
The Velos has much more weight on its own so you should be better off.
I was prepared for it since I started with lower weight and increased it step by step. However I wish at the end that I had a release mechanism since the weight was pulling the heli around a bit. So try to stay calm and no hectic moves.
Hi, please see the sister thread where Martin keeps us on our toes!!

https://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=776742
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Old 03-28-2017, 04:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by im4711 View Post
cool project -> just came across this one.
I did lift about 50lb over a year ago with one of my machines (not using a release mechanism). I had the weight on a long steel line. Biggest issue for me was to keep the heli steady since it was windy and the weight moved around like a pendulum. It was an interesting experience. However I am not sure if I would do it again on the current helis.
The Velos has much more weight on its own so you should be better off.
I was prepared for it since I started with lower weight and increased it step by step. However I wish at the end that I had a release mechanism since the weight was pulling the heli around a bit. So try to stay calm and no hectic moves.
The weight/power factor of the Velos should be a positive influence on keeping everything in place...we'll see...again starting slow, building practice and making the rules as I go. Things get dicey I can always pickle the load.
I don't believe I would be lifting anything at the 52 pounds I tested the hook at...that would be a combined AUW of 73 pounds...the FAA would be frowning on that one so my normal max sling load will stay at 30 pounds. That will keep me just under 55 pounds

I like the advice of "stay calm and no hectic moves".
I'm doomed...my normal flight is panic and hectic moves.
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Old 03-28-2017, 04:29 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogdipstick View Post
When you drop the loaded line from altitude do you think that the loss of weight will make your helicopter shoot up in the air / brief momentary loss of control? If a swinging load causes a panic situation how will this be handled? How will a snag be handled? Will this limit cargo rating, before mechanical release rating? How does a real full scale Helo handle this?

You just want to get that tail out of the tree where it has been for so long....
It will certainly shoot up from the loss of weight but I doubt it would be uncontrollable or lose control. It would be the same as doing a pitch pump.

Panic and uncontrolled swinging of the load will be handled by the cargo hook switch, just drop it an try again...that is, as long as its not breakable.
Snag...drop it with the cargo switch...reduce power to lessen the pull and drop it.
Real life helicopter pilots respond to the same situations in the same way.

From my photo album, a Bell 212 sling loading a broken Bell 206 back to the hanger, this was the late 1970's.


...and a Bell 212 with me hooking up a Bambi spray bucket to it's cargo hook in the late 70's.
Good times!



...and all the broken parts finally fell out of the tree from my Goblin 770 crash so there's nothing to recover.
Nice of you to remember.
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Old 03-29-2017, 12:56 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Looking forward to your experience. I think anything up to a little bit over heli weight will be fine. Once dou go way over it you hit the scary point.

After playing with it for some time I grew much more respect for the real live helicopter pilots who do that for their living. And ... those guys lifting that woman took an enormous risk.

Nevertheless- its fun.
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Old 03-31-2017, 10:16 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Fun idea. I might rig one up for one of my machines.
Be fun to do target practice dropping watermelons or pumpkins, could have competitions.

I do have some experience with sling loads and things didn't go well.
The load I was lifting for a local school's experiment was a very light weight antenna.
The lead we used was to short and the rotor wash had the load swinging enough that the line got into the tail rotor. As you can imagine the results weren't pretty.

Still I'd try things again having learned something from the experience. Keep lead long and the lighter the load to further down the line the better.
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Old 03-31-2017, 10:34 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks!

I am aware of the power of rotor wash near the ground and whipping of the cable and load in flight. I don't want any of those issues to take out my Velos so extra care will be exercised.

We should be able to dream up some fun with this, maybe develop it into something useful.

Of the different things to drop, I'll stay away from live turkeys, that's already been tried.
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Old 04-03-2017, 07:11 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Very Interesting bit of kit you are putting together here
Heli-X has a cargo slinging practice area
Where you can also increase the length of long line and the weight of load
It uses balls as cargo and U have to put the load down on a landing area

This might help you a bit to Sim the action of balancing on the old beach ball
An old slinging pilot I worked with refered long lining to trying to balance on the edge of a beach ball

He also referred to his short line as his sport line he could feed french fries to us boys on the ground with his sporty on

Some of the action of what we would do with a 212 , The search for Oil & Gas took us to some amazing places I wish I had more of the old photos , Good Luck with this project , If ya can give that Heli-X a go it is hard and could help you

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Old 04-04-2017, 06:28 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Thanks for the beautiful long line photos Falung!
...and the tip on practicing with the long line on Heli-X. I didn't know such a thing existed, very cool.

I've been staring at my Velos with cargo hook for days now, not turning a blade and the weather has been perfect. Full scale has all my attention right now.
Gives me time to roll ideas around in my head with what it can be used for both for fun and with a meaningful purpose.

The winners for me so far with utilizing an RC heli for a purpose and fun are the fishermen using it to haul their fishing line off shore or far out in the lake, farther than they could possibly cast and drop the line in...and some with down looking cameras to see the fish before dropping the line.

There has to be many imaginative ways of using the rc heli, we just haven't thought of them yet.
...but we know it will be fun...now if I can just get some stick time and try out my creation.
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Old 04-04-2017, 10:22 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Feeding Alligators, Hanging Christmas Lights on tall trees maybe. That's about as practical as I can think.

You ever see these vids doing some crazy stuff with loads, same guys did the Lady Lift.

[ame="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWc6MBFyABo"]RC heli vs. Alligator - what happens? NOT a prank but an experiment!! - YouTube[/ame]
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Old 04-22-2017, 04:25 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Flying around for almost an hour with 10lbs of water underneath seems an easy task for VelosUAV

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Old 04-23-2017, 08:04 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Beautiful flying machine Aris...every time I see a photo of your UAV my mind starts dreaming of seeing it performing an important task and the new beginning of UAV utilization.
10 pounds...that's a lot of Ouzo.

Keep us posted on your milestones...it's exciting to see!
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