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Old 05-06-2018, 07:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Velos UAV

Starting a new thread dedicated to the Velos UAV.

Been doing a little flying with the Velos UAV.
Given it is a direct descendant from the Velos 880 it fly's very similar to its brother.
It has two distinct differences in my opinion...all good.

The Velos UAV by virtue of those fantastic main blades, which are a different design for better cruise efficiency from the 2 bladed 880, are heavier and with that comes an increase in stability (good for my job description) and inertia (also good for my job description).
I haven't done an auto yet with the Velos UAV but I bet it will be super easy, even if your less than perfect on the collective the rotor speed will be there.

With the long landing gear legs, the Velos UAV is a easier to land than the 880.
With the short landing gear of the 880 and 6 foot plus rotor diameter, the 880 has a real pronounced hover cushion you had to work through to get the skids on the ground.
With the tall landing gear of the Velos UAV, and that same diameter rotor, it feels like the hover cushion has a chance to dissipate and not accumulate when close to the ground making landing very easy with no ballooning like the 880.

I am still working with the FAA with my purposed business model with the Velos UAV working as a hover platform for spraying cleaner on buildings and roofs along with possible insecticide spraying of buildings and ornamental trees.
They contacted me and asked for photos of my complete flight system so they may better understand how I may fit into the FAA regulatory system or create a new regulation.
The biggest question in their discussion is with environmental concerns.

As I mentioned before, most regulations are written for aircraft that have tanks mounted to the airframe. This becomes a concern during a crash. My system has the tank left on the ground so no spills due to a crash can occur...unless I crash into the tank as it sits on the ground and rupture it...which I'll try very hard not to do.

We'll see what they say. Its kind off cool that they have taken an interest in what I am purposing. Whatever they rule to make it a safe operation...I will comply.

I have included some new photos of my Velos. Those who know me know I like accent stripes so I had to add a little accent to the tail boom and fuselage.
Given its such a long model I tried to work with that and the graceful lines of the canopy. I like the look.

So here are the daytime photos followed by the night time photos with the running lights lit. Its a very pretty helicopter.

The long tall landing gear legs are reminiscent of the fabulous Sky Crane. There is no doubt it's built purely for work.











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Last edited by A VIKING; 05-06-2018 at 08:05 PM..
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Old 05-06-2018, 07:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default The Night Time Photos

The position lights are super bright LEDs which really show well in flight and illuminate the ground during landing making for easy night time landings.
There is an advantage to having the lights reflect off the large white canopy, it really increases visibility of the model in the dark.
The white tail light can be set to flash at different rates or remain lit continuously.







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Old 05-07-2018, 04:55 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Nice looking bird!
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Old 05-08-2018, 09:40 AM   #4 (permalink)
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A few more photo shoots of the VelosUAV during a night flight.









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Old 05-08-2018, 09:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Aris...I see that along with the down looking floods there appears to be a spot light up front as well.
Is it controllable with a gimbal? It would really be cool if the video camera and the spot light received the same controlling signal for position. That way whatever position the camera was directed, the spot light would follow that direction so the down link image received by the operator would always be illuminated no matter which direction the camera was pointing.
Is that possible?
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Old 05-09-2018, 05:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Allan, we have thought about that but at the moment we are only using the flood light. In front there are two cameras, one day and one night camera. There is also another one that is not visible in the photos and is mounted on a gimbal. Also we can turn on and off the lights from the remote control.
After some testing we found easier to move the heli around than controlling the light with the camera individually.

Having the camera looking always at the same direction with a spot light is a great idea. The only thing to consider with such a configuration is that the viewing area of the camera is usually wide, especially when looking at a far away object. The spot light illuminates a spesific area and the rest is darker. That can sometimes make the picture look worse.
We found that, using a flood light that can illuminate the whole area very well when flying at about 40 - 50 meters can be easier in use. All we have to do is move the helicopter around and we have always a nice and clear picture of what is going on underneath.

But like you said testing new payloads and ideas can only be beneficial. Experimentation can lead to the invention of new uses and applications and in any case we will learn something.

More testing is scheduled and we will publish video from the on board cameras in order to help people better understand how the system performs.
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Old 05-11-2018, 03:58 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Very cool machine .... looking forward for more info
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Dressed for work.

I did get a phone call from the FAA and they can see no reason for me not to proceed with my proposal of using my Velos UAV as a cleaning platform to clean the exteriors of commercial and residential buildings where the height of the building is challenging for other normal cleaning methods.

My primary cleaning solution is bleach and water which is not considered hazardous material so no special licensing is needed to handle it.

If I were to spray insecticide like spider spray I would need a license or certification to handle it like any other company that spray for pests.

So the simple start would be to focus on the cleaning side for now. The spiders can wait.

I am already registered but will be required to get the 107 certification as a UAV pilot.

I have removed all my equipment from the Velos 880 for installation on the Velos UAV.

No working videos yet so if your new to what I have been up to with the 880 which got this whole thing started, glance through the Velos 880 Cargo Hook thread to get caught up.

So here are a few photos of my cargo hook assembly, swing arm assembly and spray boom assembly mounted on the Velos UAV.

I can use the twin slot cargo hook for long line lifting with a useful load of 25 pounds on the line.

The swing arm I will use for flying a rope up and over a high tree branch that needs to be removed or a dead tree needing to be pulled down that no one wants to get close to with a saw.
Christmas decorations high in the sky can be placed using the rope as a hoist to get the decorations in place. All of this of course needs the airspace to be successful but it certainly can be done.

...and of course the spray boom...I'm not climbing a ladder anymore to clean exterior walls or to clean a roof.

Here are the parts of the heart of the system which is the twin slot cargo hook.


The steel straight pin is used for the long line and is controlled by a servo so the load can be released if things go badly...which in the beginning happened often.
It is also used to drop the swing arm to release the rope on cue from the operator.
The safety pin is used to lock the trapeze that the swing arm hangs on when connected to the cargo hook. I don't want to accidentally drop the spray boom down with the swing that supports it by hitting the pickle switch on my TX.

...and the cargo hook for attaching the long line.

The spray boom mounted in the swing arm.








...the rope on the swing arm ready for deployment with 100 feet of rope on the swing arm and another 100 feet on the free end. So why not just drop the rope from the cargo hook? The swing arm allows control of the rope to help prevent tangling of the rope as it free falls. Otherwise you'll have a knot of rope hanging 50 feet up in the tree that you can't reach.


...the cargo hook ready for the long line.


So the fun continues and gets more serious every day...but it is still a lot of fun.
Videos when I can make them.
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Last edited by A VIKING; 05-31-2018 at 07:44 PM..
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Neat. If you have to have a tether to supply washing fluid, may as well develop a HV power delivery system so it flies indefinitely as a washing system. :-)
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Old 06-01-2018, 05:53 AM   #10 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=OnTheSnap;7585075]Neat. If you have to have a tether to supply washing fluid, may as well develop a HV power delivery system so it flies indefinitely as a washing system. :-)[/QUOTE

It's an interesting idea...wonder how the weight would compare between flying batteries and flying a 60 foot length of electric cable large enough to run the motors?
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Old 06-01-2018, 06:44 AM   #11 (permalink)
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As experience is increased, more ideas pop up that weren't thought of before.
In an effort to become more efficient in flight I think it would be beneficial to install a laser pointer on the spray boom.

The spray pattern itself is wide but I have found that judging really accurate pointing of the spray boom in flight because of odd angles and distance becomes a challenge.

A laser dot being projected on the wall would let me know quickly that the boom is on target to apply the spray so I can move on to the next section.

The laser pointer would be very helpful spraying in a high peak at the roof line.
In those areas I find myself flying too low on the wall, where I may have already sprayed, or too high, spraying over the top of wall onto the roof where the spray might not be needed.
If I could see a laser dot on the wall in the peak, that would make it simpler and quicker in spray application.

It would also be beneficial to know the distance around the laser dot that I have spray coverage to allow more efficiency.

With position hold aiding with the flying I could start at the top of the spraying project, slew laterally in flight across the wall, stop, lower the UAV's altitude monitoring the laser dot for distance traveled to provide an overlap of spray, then slew back across the wall for the next pass, drop down to the next level for the next pass and so on.
That would be efficient in both coverage and time spent in flight.

I guess, because I have servo control over the spraying direction of the tip in pitch, I should attach the laser pointer there and not the ridged boom itself.

Future setups could have two additional lasers that are positioned to show the outer edge of the coverage cone.

If I fly back away from the wall or move in closer to the wall the perimeter lasers at the outside of the spray pattern would always show an accurate picture of the entire spray pattern, not just the center.

...one idea put into practice creates another idea not originally thought of.
...now to search for the proper laser pointer.
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Old 06-06-2018, 12:56 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Default More detail...

A few more detailed photos of the swing arm and spray boom on my Velos UAV.

I created a better trapeze for the swing arm to hang from the cargo hook.
My first attempt looked a lot like an "Erector Set" but it did the job well.

The polished aluminum pieces create a visual trick to the eyes. If you look at the photos, the carbon fiber control rod and aluminum spray tube look like you can see them through the aluminum supports as if the supports are plexiglass.


Although originally developed for the 880 the swing arm looks like it was designed for the UAV. The curve in the tubes of the swing arm match up closely with the lower lines of the canopy and the rear tubing "hump" created to prevent the rope from sliding back on the rack lined up perfectly with the front landing gear cross tubes so it created the perfect location for the foam bumpers.

I also removed the original black rubber tube from the adjustable spray tip. It was just to stiff so it was replaced with a clear plastic tube which does the job of flexing for directional control much better.









The material used to support the control tube guide is packing foam cut to size for the job. I never cease to come up with new uses for that foam.




"Here's looking at you..."
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Old 06-30-2018, 05:13 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I moved my commentary about drone washing to the "Have any ideas in utility" thread to keep this section a little cleaner.

So to fill this space...a couple more photos of the Velos UAV sporting the spray boom.
Not the best quality but I have been grounded a long time so I'll use what I can find in old photos.

Now that I think about it, this was my last flight before I became grounded. The first photo was my last takeoff and the second photo on the ground was taken a few seconds later after a short duration auto because both motors shut down unexpectedly in flight. The power loss was momentary but shouldn't have happened. I found out I could duplicate it on the bench so until the issue is resolved I remain a "sod trotter" with no flying.



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Old 07-02-2018, 07:54 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default The idea has taken Flight!

So the idea of a hovering spray platform in really growing.

Here is a company who has taken the idea to the next step and is doing it right.

Check it out:
Air Brushed: New Drones Make Painting Easier - Inside Unmanned Systems

I also wanted to have an electronic range finder to keep proper distance to the working surface but when you are just an individual with limited resources your dreams can only be so big.


They have applied for 5 patents for the system and I wish them well.
I don't own any patents, but I have the cleanest house in the neighborhood...and that's what I was after.


Time for me to back away and dream up my next project.
Ya'll fly safe!


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Old 08-16-2018, 10:12 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Velos Rotor Brake

I am glad to be back online!
I said I would be dreaming up another project and here it is.

So how much time do we spend waiting for our rotors to spool down after hitting throttle hold?
If you fly a large rotor disk...that would be a long time. For the Velos UAV three bladed rotor to spool down with flat pitch takes 60 seconds, of if you throw in full negative pitch it reduces the time down to 30 seconds but you didn't do your rotor hub dampers any good in doing so.

What about in an emergency when you find yourself landing, hit TH just when you notice some kid running up to your model to give it a big bear hug.

That actually happened to a friend of mine back in the 90's. Some kid runs up from no where and runs right into the rotor on spool down. It was winter and the kid had a big winter coat on, the rotor blade cut right through his coat but didn't cut his skin...super lucky.

For myself flying spraying missions around the public and buildings it just makes sense to have a way of stopping the rotor quickly when needed.

Engaging the rotor brake after TH will remove a lot of inertia from the rotor quickly making it less dangerous in an emergency.

Lets face it, if you find yourself in a bad situation that is getting worse and you may lose the model into a structure or spectators its best to quickly reduce rotor RPM and take that danger away from the situation. Hitting TH is a start but the rotor will still be turning when it hits its destination. An out of control falling model with no rotor RPM is safer than an out of control model falling with rotors still turning.

So here is my video showcasing the rotor brake for the Velos UAV.
It can stop the rotor in 5 seconds after hitting TH, so it does a great job.

To stop the rotor even faster, a larger diameter rotor disk can be used. I will be staying with the disk I have, at some point if you stop the rotor really fast you'll get the rotor blades swinging forward in their grips...I didn't want that, but it would be great in an emergency shut down.

Enjoy the video!
I am telling you that I created this for emergencies but after using it for normal shut down, I can't believe I went this long without it.
It's a pleasure to land, hit throttle hold and before you can walk up to the model the rotor has already stopped...that is really nice!

With all of the redundant features of the Velos UAV, adding a rotor brake makes the model even safer to operate...you can't beat it.

Let me know what you think!

Velos Rotors (3 min 10 sec)
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Old 08-24-2018, 01:17 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Putting on the Brakes

In case your curious...

I know that increasing the rotor brake disk size will shorten stopping time of the rotor during shut down.
Bigger diameter brake disk = faster spool down time.

I also know using negative pitch during shut down will shorten spool down times of the rotor using aerodynamic drag on the blades.

So using my current rotor brake disk size to induce mechanical drag on the rotor during shut down and simultaneously using negative pitch to induce aerodynamic drag on the blades during shut down, the stopping time of the rotor after hitting TH is reduced from 5 seconds, with only brake use, to 3 seconds including aerodynamic drag.

That's a very aggressive stop of the rotor.
Visually its a little crazy looking, especially for a rotor the size of the Velos UAV.
I may have to do another video because its unlike anything we have seen with RC helicopters.
Picture in your mind quickly landing, you hit TH and three seconds later the rotor blades have stopped...yeah its crazy looking.
You stand there looking at it thinking, what just happened?

So for me its exactly what I was after, super quick spool down of the large rotor which enhances safety in flight and on the ground in an emergency and also for convenience during normal shut down.

I use it on every shut down, can't live without it now...I am very spoiled.
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Old 08-26-2018, 04:10 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Rotor Brake Plus Blade Pitch during the stop.

Just an add on video to the first one concerning the rotor brake.

This video shows a rotor brake stop to include adding blade pitch which shortens the stopping time of the rotor by about 2 seconds which I did not show in the first video.


Increasing brake disk diameter will shorten the stop time a little more but I believe at some point even with a bigger brake disk the energy in the rotor will take whatever time it needs to dissipate, no matter what, so at that point, that will be best stopping time achievable.

I included my first video at the end of this one so those who have seen it can bail out when you get to that point.


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Old 08-26-2018, 08:52 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Dual Brakes

The velos is super redundant with dual systems so why not dual rotor brakes.

The Velos awesome design makes it simple for me to do, I have the left hand or number one motor secondary spindle available...one brake works well, will two brakes be that much better...I'm going to find out.
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Old 09-02-2018, 11:23 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Interesting design for a brake system.
One item I did see during its operation you may wish to address.
When applying the brake, you can see the side frame deflecting where you have the servo mounted.
You may want to consider reinforcing that area to minimize flexing.
Perhaps a set of frame stiffeners joining the two side frames together on either side of the servo.
Or a inserting a section of box channel in between the frame sides






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Old 09-02-2018, 11:23 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Good observation nightflyr, you are correct. There is some flexing of the side frames when applying the brake.

I actually have an aluminum block bolted into the side frames now giving it support. Its the Velos 880 landing gear block that I use for the cargo hook frame so now its doing double duty as cargo hook and support for the rotor brake(s).

The side frames are not that tall in that area so even though they are supported by the cargo hook block, they roll a little anyway with the aluminum block from the torque of the rotor brake servo.
I really wanted to provide a "hanger strap" from the transmission plate down to the servo but it didn't line up properly. That would end the flexing completely.

I'll be testing the second rotor brake today so it will be interesting to see what happens to the torque from the brake servos when both are actuated at the same time.
They may push against each other through the side frames and the rolling of the frames I see with one brake actuated may be cancelled out.

Either way I am not too worried about it except its lost pressure to the brake pad.

Can't wait to see what dual rotor brakes will do.
A rotor mass weighing in at over three pounds turning at 1200RPM can't stop instantaneously, but it will be interesting to see how fast it can decelerate.

You have to love the Xpert servos, they are put into full stall for several seconds during rotor brake actuation and they just keep going without issue. Talk about a torture test.

Thanks for you observation and post, I appreciate it!

I'll be posting more on the dual rotor brake setup. If its impressive enough in its stopping ability of the rotor I'll post another video showing the action.
My quest is to get the shortest stop time without damage and without using blade pitch.
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Velos Rotors<<SAB<<Compas<<Align<<Walkera <<Propel
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