First Plane, Bixler2, Help with order

QEbearQEbear Club Members Posts: 21
Hi All,



I've already ordered (and received) from Aus Warehouse:



1x #9310000060/32084 Hobbyking Bixler 2 EPO 1500mm

   w/ Brushless Motor, Servos and Optional Flaps (ARF)        = $80.31

1x #T2200.3S.25/14668 Turnigy 2200mAh 3S 25C Lipo Pack     = $14.41

1x #TR_P25A/32064 TURNIGY Plush 25amp Speed Controller     = $12.06

2x #HK15178/32071 HK15178 Analog Servo 10g / 1.4kg / 0.09s = $4.06



I now have on order (but held up) from International warehouse:



1x #HKB610A/12105 HobbyKing ECO6-10 200W 10A

   6S Bal/Dis/Cyc Charger w/ acc.                                 = $39.99

1x #9171000184/31544 Turnigy 9XR Transmitter Mode 2 (No Module) = $50.22

1x #T-Twins/10993 Twin pack charge lead (2 x 3S)6S w/ XT60      = $1.99

1x #DJT/14355 FrSky DF 2.4Ghz Combo Pack for JR w/ Module & RX = $49.29

1x #9171000183/31315 Turnigy 9XR Safety Protected

    11.1v (3s) 2200mAh 1.5C Transmitter Pack                      = $12.99

1x #T2200.3S.25/8934 Turnigy 2200mAh 3S 25C Lipo Pack           = $10.57

1x #BOX-379g/9087 Extra Length Cardboard Box and Packing 379g    = $0.00



Three simple questions:



1) Anything obvious I'm missing? Any suggestions in general?



The second order is being held up by the ECO6-10 charger. I went to the Intnl warehouse for the transmitter (ERX) and the charger. Once there, I padded out the order to make use of the shipping charges - i.e. other than the tx, module, receiver and charger the other stuff does not have to come from Intnl warehouse.



2) Is there a better way to do it?

Can I / Should I delete the charger and order a different one to get stuff moving?



3) If I'm going to delete the charger, should I delete other stuff from the order and get them locally?



Any help would be greatly appreciated.



Many thanks

QB

Comments

  • __Evan__Evan Club Members Posts: 1,122
    A couple of things to note:



    (1) Shipping batteries internationally costs quite a lot extra. If you can get the TX pack from the AU warehouse, take both batteries out of the international warehouse order and get them locally.



    If you do get batteries from the international warehouse, get plenty - it doesn't cost any more to ship two than it does to ship one, apart from the usual weight increase.



    (2) I'd grab a few spare FrSky receivers. It's really annoying when you get a new plane from the AU warehouse but then have to wait a month for the receiver to turn up from HK.



    (3) The twin-pack charge leads aren't really all that useful if you use the batteries separately. The different charge levels result in the balance process taking way longer, to the point where it's better to just buy two cheap chargers if you really need to charge fast.



    (4) The ECO6-10 is somewhat over-powered for this job. Best to charge the packs at 1C, so only 2.2A and around 25W. Even the basic ECO6 would have plenty of power.



    (4) You'll need a power supply for the charger. It uses 12V.



    (5) It's worth getting a set of 3.5mm bullet connectors to go between the motor and ESC. This makes it much easier to disconnect them if necessary. You'll also need a set of XT60s to put on the ESC so it can connect to the battery.







    Suggested new orders:



    AU warehouse:

    1x/2x ECO6 charger or, if you want something that'll last you forever, 1x iCharger 1010B+

    3.5mm bullets (you can go without these and just heatshrink the bare bullets if you want, but I quite like the plastic housings)

    Zippy 2200mAh 25C 3S LiPo (always worth having spares)

    LiFePO4 TX battery (I'm not entirely sure how to charge that one without spending some time building an adaptor)





    International warehouse:

    XT60s

    105W power supply (or just get a cheap laptop one from eBay)

    Bare 3.5mm bullets

    5mm heatshrink for bullets/XT60s

    Turnigy 9XR Mode 2

    FrSky DJT combo pack (with V8FR-II)

    FrSky D8R-XP (spare receiver, always good to have)





    That's all I can think of. You may or may not need servo extensions for the flaps; I'm not sure how long the leads on those servos are.
  • QEbearQEbear Club Members Posts: 21
    Hi Evan,



    Many thanks for your comments.

    [Quote=__Evan](1) Shipping batteries internationally costs quite a lot extra. If you can get the TX pack from the AU warehouse, take both batteries out of the international warehouse order and get them locally.



    If you do get batteries from the international warehouse, get plenty - it doesn't cost any more to ship two than it does to ship one, apart from the usual weight increase.

    ...

    LiFePO4 TX battery (I'm not entirely sure how to charge that one without spending some time building an adaptor)

    Yes, that's how I ended up where I am. You see, I don't know how to charge that one either, so I played it safe and got the Turnigy one as they make the transmitter - and its only available from HK warehouse. Thereafter, as you say, if I'm going to get one, I might as well get a couple.



    Apart from the charging question though - there's no doubt about using that battery in the transmitter?

    [Quote=__Evan](2) I'd grab a few spare FrSky receivers. It's really annoying when you get a new plane from the AU warehouse but then have to wait a month for the receiver to turn up from HK.

    Thanks for the tip. I'll do that.

    [Quote=__Evan](3) The twin-pack charge leads aren't really all that useful if you use the batteries separately. The different charge levels result in the balance process taking way longer, to the point where it's better to just buy two cheap chargers if you really need to charge fast.

    (4) The ECO6-10 is somewhat over-powered for this job. Best to charge the packs at 1C, so only 2.2A and around 25W. Even the basic ECO6 would have plenty of power.

    ...

    1x/2x ECO6 charger or, if you want something that'll last you forever, 1x iCharger 1010B+

    I don't know how to say this without sounding as though I'm arguing with you (which I'm not - I don't know enough to be able to) but when I read the discussion tab for the product there was this:

    [Quote=Robert]What is needed to serial charge two Turnigy nano-tech 6000mah 3S? http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__1193

    9__Turnigy_nano_tech_6000mah_3S_25_50C_Lipo_Pack.htm

    [Quote=ElectricAussie]Hi Robert, The best device for serial charging 2x 3S LiPos is (PRODUCT ID: T-Twins, $2). Very easy to use and you will get nicely charged/balanced LiPos with this set-up. Cheers, EA! If you go to cheap, you end up buying stuff twice. OTOH, who wants to spend US$133 on a charger. I was trying to pick something in between.



    Would I be right if I rephrased what you're saying as: "Look, just buy the cheap one - the ECO6-10 isn't really going to allow you to charge multiple batteries anyway - and you can get a good one later if you scale up your involvement in the hobby." ?

    [Quote=__Evan](4) You'll need a power supply for the charger. It uses 12V.

    Would have missed that, thanks.

    [Quote=__Evan](5) It's worth getting a set of 3.5mm bullet connectors to go between the motor and ESC. This makes it much easier to disconnect them if necessary. You'll also need a set of XT60s to put on the ESC so it can connect to the battery.

    Never would have known this - thanks again.

    [Quote=__Evan]That's all I can think of. You may or may not need servo extensions for the flaps; I'm not sure how long the leads on those servos are.

    Will look into that.



    Final question - will the servo's I (practically randomly) picked do the job for the flaps? What's an Analog servo vs (presumably) a digital one? What's the difference between 9g and 10g? The former being what's suggested for this plane, the latter being what I ordered.



    Anyone else have any tidbits of wisdom?



    Many thanks again,

    QB
  • __Evan__Evan Club Members Posts: 1,122
    [quote=QEbear]Yes, that's how I ended up where I am. You see, I don't know how to charge that one either, so I played it safe and got the Turnigy one as they make the transmitter - and its only available from HK warehouse. Thereafter, as you say, if I'm going to get one, I might as well get a couple.



    Apart from the charging question though - there's no doubt about using that battery in the transmitter?

    It should definitely work in the TX, although you might need to change the voltage for the low-voltage alarm (LiFePO4 is a somewhat lower voltage than LiPo). I've got a similar one (the 1800mAh version, which is out of stock now) in my 9X.



    For charging, this lead should do the job, although it looks like that might be included with the charger anyway.



    [quote=QEbear]I don't know how to say this without sounding as though I'm arguing with you (which I'm not - I don't know enough to be able to) but when I read the discussion tab for the product there was this: No offence taken.



    [quote=QEbear]If you go to cheap, you end up buying stuff twice. OTOH, who wants to spend US$133 on a charger. I was trying to pick something in between.



    Would I be right if I rephrased what you're saying as: "Look, just buy the cheap one - the ECO6-10 isn't really going to allow you to charge multiple batteries anyway - and you can get a good one later if you scale up your involvement in the hobby." ?

    Well, hear me out, and then make a decision.



    [quick version]

    Your paraphrasing is pretty much right. For low-power hobby use, the ECO6 is no worse than the ECO6-10 or the 1010B+, and two ECO6s cost the same and work better than one ECO6-10. When you get to high-power hobby use, you'll probably want something better than the ECO6-10 anyway.

    [end of quick version]



    Each of these chargers has its strengths.



    - The ECO6 is a great cheap, low-power charger. It can only manage 50W, but 50W means you can charge a 3S pack at 4A or a 6S pack at 2A. The 5W discharge limit might get annoying after a while.



    - The ECO6-10 is a great cheap, higher-power charger. It can deliver 200W (assuming you've got a 200W power supply for it), allowing you to charge a 6S pack at 8A. The 25W discharge is pretty nice.



    - The iCharger 1010B+ is a nice high-power, high-cost charger. It can charge up to 10S, and 300W. However, I find that the main advantages are not so obvious. In particular, it's got a substantially better user interface, it produces much less heat (and less noise) when charging, and it can discharge a LiPo back into a lead-acid battery which allows for discharging at 50W+ (normally limited by how fast you can charge the lead-acid battery rather than the charger itself).





    Now, the ECO6-10 is great if you can charge a couple of packs in series or parallel. It could potentially charge eight 3S 2200mAh packs at once, giving each 2A. However, charging in series/parallel is often not a great idea unless the packs are actually used in series or parallel (see below for explanation). If you don't use it for that, it can only charge one 3S 2200mAh pack at a time, and it'll only do that at 2.2A (because that's the maximum safe charge current for a cheap 2200mAh pack).



    The iCharger is great for much the same job. It can charge even more packs at once, if you're doing it in series or parallel. However, if you don't charge in series/parallel, it can still only do one 3S 2200mAh pack at a time.



    The ECO6 can't charge many packs at once. It can charge two 3S 2200mAh packs at once in series, giving each about 2A (so pretty close to their maximum charge current). On the other hand, it's cheap. It's cheap enough that you can buy two of them and run two separate charges at the same time. Without charging in series/parallel you can charge two 3S 2200mAh packs at once (one per charger), which is double the throughput of either of the other two. It also gives you the flexibility to charge different battery sizes/types. Say you've got a 4000mAh 4S LiPo, a 2200mAh 3S LiPo, and the 1500mAh LiFePO4 TX pack. Then you can charge the 4000mAh 4S LiPo on one charger, charge the 2200mAh 3S LiPo on the other, and when the first one finishes charge the 1500mAh LiFePO4 pack while the other LiPo is still finishing.





    In short, for relatively low-power hobby use, the ECO6 is just as good as the ECO6-10 or the 1010B+, but it costs half as much as the ECO6-10 and more like a fifth as much as the 1010B+. Two ECO6s working together are better than one ECO6-10 or one 1010B+, for much the same price as the ECO6-10.





    For high-power hobby use the ECO6-10 or 1010B+ will be much better than the ECO6. However, I found that I spent a long time in the "low power" category (mainly because I picked planes that I could use with the existing batteries) and so it would have made a lot of sense to have two low-power chargers instead of one high-power charger. Eventually I did get a fancy charger (the 1010B+) and kept the old ones around for doing the TX batteries. One thing I found was that once you do go to the "high-power" category, it can be quite nice to be able to use 8S packs, which the ECO6-10 can't charge.



    [explanation regarding series/parallel charging]

    Parallel charging means that you connect two packs together in parallel, and then charge them as one big pack. Same voltage, higher current capacity. The problem with this is that when you connect the batteries, the higher-voltage one discharges into the lower-voltage one until they're at the same voltage. Since LiPos have an extremely low internal resistance (often under 10mOhms) the current flow can be very large for a brief period. This has the potential to do some damage. The exception is if the packs were actually used in parallel (eg. two 1000mAh 3S packs used in a plane designed for a 2000mAh 3S pack), since they'll always be at the same voltage.



    An advantage of parallel charging is that you can charge different capacity packs together. A 2200mAh 3S pack and a 4000mAh 3S pack will charge together very happily.



    Series charging connects the two packs in series, giving the same current capacity but a higher voltage. Connecting the batteries is no problem; it's perfectly safe unless you do it wrong. However, there's a problem when charging: they both charge at the same rate, so whichever one started with more charge will finish charging first. When this happens, the balance circuit has to dissipate all the excess energy being put into that one while the other finishes charging. Since the balance circuit can't dissipate much energy, the charge current tends to drop down to more like 0.3A. This results in the other battery taking ages to reach full charge - way longer than if it was being charged separately. The exception is if the packs were actually used in series, since they'll both have the same amount of current capacity used and will therefore reach full charge at the same time.



    Series-parallel is a combinaiton of both types, with the disadvantages of both.

    [end of explanation]





    [quote=QEbear]Final question - will the servo's I (practically randomly) picked do the job for the flaps? What's an Analog servo vs (presumably) a digital one? What's the difference between 9g and 10g? The former being what's suggested for this plane, the latter being what I ordered. They'll be fine.



    Analogue/digital refers to how the servo does its positioning. Analogue servos use an analogue feedback loop around the potentiometer (that measures shaft position) and an analogue conversion of the input pulse. They're limited to around 50Hz update rate, and may have relatively slow and/or poor positioning. Digital servos have a little microcontroller that runs the feedback loop. This allows for more 'brains' (eg. able to handle update rates over 300Hz depending on the servo) and might improve performance a bit.



    With that said, you can get some awful digital servos and some excellent analogue ones. For the vast majority of tasks a standard analogue servo is absolutely fine.

  • QEbearQEbear Club Members Posts: 21
    Evan,



    Thanks for the full explanation on the battery charger - its exactly the sort of information which can only be known from experience.



    I'll seek to reconfigure my outstanding order for HK tomorrow.



    Thanks again - I'll keep you posted,



    QB

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