Showing posts from May, 2012

French F3F championship 2012

Last week-end was the F3F championship 2012 near Grenoble, and organized by two local clubs (Busards, and Brié Alpes Soaring). We were very stressed because of the weather forecast with thunderstorms and low wind during the 3 days. On top of that we had a very bad surprise to learn the day before that the collective accomodation had been closed because of the death of the manager. 35 people without accomodation less than 24 hours before the beginning of the competition, that's a real problem ! Laurent Lombardo achieved a miracle (a very appropriated word as you will see) by finding a plan B in a very special place: an abbey/sanctuary at 1700meters of altitude in a magic place.

Saturday we met at the slope with all the competitors. around 1:30 pm, we launched the very first round with 6m/s growing to 11m/s at the end of the afternoon. We achieved 7 rounds during the afternoon, and hopefully the thunderstorms announced didn't come ! The best time was 34 seconds by Matthieu Merv…

another video with the RD32 II

This video comes from the RD32II. The sound capture is very bad, so I suppressed it.

Some F3F Practice

Last Saturday, I spent the afternoon at le col de Faïsses, and flew the Rotmilan with 1.4kg of ballast. Conditions were great, and I could achieve very fast runs that a friend of mine timed around 30 and 31s.There is a short video:

RD32 II video

In order to install the RD32II, I built with some samba and plywood a adpater to reuse the GoPro mount system. the GoPro mount is fixed on a plate or coroplast robustly tape on the wing and around the fuselage.

I did a 16 minutes flight with the RD32II and here is the result:

The form factor is definitively more interresting, with less drag on top of the fuselage. The 3 buttons are convenient to use especially because there is a virbrator that give you clear indication when switching on and off, starting or stopping filming.

Another great feature is the ability to connect the cam to a TV set and do all the settings easily. The downside is that you don't have a TVset at the slope, so once the mode, resolution and all other parameters selected, you cannot change them.

The Class 6 micro SD from Sandisk worked great.

Overall, this is a very good alternative to the GoPro 1, for 1/3 of the price ! However, the GoPro 2 made a step forward in term of quality and color rendering.

Sport Cam RD32 II

I just received my sport CAM RD32 II from Price is 115 euros which is 1/3 of the price of the Go Pro. This full HD sport cam is also interresting by its form factor which is more suitable to fix on top of a plane, with less drag.

Characteristics are the following:
RD32Ⅱ Ambarella 1080p Sport Camera(20m waterproof)120° wide-angle, HD camera lens, let you shoot more freely5 Megapixel 1/2.5 HD CMOS Sensor Video format: H.264 Compression, Ambarella softwareOptional HD Video resolution: 1080P=1920 x 1080pixels(16:9), 30fps Or 720P=1280x720pixels(16:9), 60fpsLoop recording:2min,5mins,15mins for optionsPhoto resolution: 5MP,8MP,12MPLaser light help for fixing position of the target object2 high brightness LED lights for night usingBuilt-in high capacity li-battery lasting video recording for 2.5hSupport up to 32 GB micro SD card(class 4 is recommended) Support HDMI and TV-out, easy to share more funs 8 languages TV setting menu (including main European languages)USB2.0 high-speed de…

Video: Spring CUP F3F 2012 POLAND

Another very nice video about the Spring CUP F3F 2012 POLAND:

CRRCsim 360° landscape

Last sunday, while I was on the slope, I attended to the capture of a panoramic landscape for CRRCsim by Joël Liénard who is a major contributor for this great simulator, especially for F3F pilots.

Joël uses a compact digital camera mounted on an semi-automated pole. The camera is mounted on a wood frame articulated and moved by a standard size servo, piloted by a microcontroller and a basic program with temporisation between each picture. For each angle position, he takes several pictures in the vertical plan, then manually move to the next angle and so on until having the 360° panorama with overlaps between pictures.

Then Joël proceed to a second 360° capture, but higher, in order to create a sort of vertical stereoscopy allowing him to calculate distances. The whole operation takes about 30 minutes between the installation of the device, and the operation itself.

But the main work is still coming with the assembly of the numerous pictures, then the mapping with the "geographi…

F3F Poland photo report

An excellent photo report from Tomáš Winkler about the Eurotour / World Cup F3F in Poland can be seen at the following URL: Tomáš Picasa album

F3F World Cup and Eurotour 2012 in Poland

Paweł Burdziakowski sent me the link to the video of the F3F World Cup and Eurotour 2012 in Poland, last week-end. A very tough, hard contest with lots of plane damaged (~ 20 planes damaged beyond repair !!), very turbulent inland slope, but also very fast flights with a best time of 31s by Lukas Gaubatz who won the competition.

More results on

Video: Rana F3F open

A video about the Open F3F of Rana (CZ):

TBS in San Fransisco

Last episode of Team Black Sheep road trip, this video is filmed in San Fransisco area:

MKS catalogue 2012

MKS finally released the 2012 catalogue that you can download here. All the glider servos range is dsiplayed in it with characteristics, and also the recent Safety BEC.

TOA 2012

This week-end was the 4th edition of this F3F contest. On Saturday, weather forecast was not really exciting witht thunderstoms in the afternoon, and low wind from south. We were very lucky because the thunderstorms went around the slope, with only few rain drops, and then increased the wind to reach more than 10 m/s.

We achieved 7 rounds in medium to strong condition. Lots of sub 40s has been flown by various pilots. At the head of the contest, Matthieu Mervelet flew great his FS4 and logically finishes first. I follow at the second place with my Pike Precision. I flew up to 1400 kg of ballast. Reto Blummer takes the third place.
On Saturday evening we had a very friendly BBQ at the camping where most of the pilots were staying. Sunday, forecast was saying no wind or very very little wind from north. We drove to a new slope, and did some free flight wiaitng for the condition to grow, but it didn't happen. It was a (unwanted) opportunity to test the range of my DMSS radio. I flew …