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Author Topic: Flyzone Calypso upgrade  (Read 571 times)
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Konrad
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« on: February 02, 2017, 02:17:35 PM »

The Calypso appears to be a very popular entry level glider at my field. It is second only to the Park Zone Radian. While the Calypso is a bit smaller at 1.8 meter (the Radian is a 2 meter ship) it has a lot more potential in that it is an aileron equipped glider. The ailerons allow the Calypso to perform like a long winged aerobatic ship should the weather not be good for thermals. I have to admit that prior to flying a friends Calypso I had dismissed this model as not being placed well in the market,  as the Radian was a larger 2 meter  Rudder Elevator Motor (REM) ship aimed squarely at the entry level pilot.   Also seeing how the Calypso flew against the Radians, both in the hands of beginners, left the impression that the Radian was a much better small entry glider. I’m here to say this isn’t so, the Calypso just needs some minor trim modification.

I was fortunate enough to find a Ready to Fly Calypso on Tower Hobbies scratch & dent sale. When I received the Calypso I was pleasantly surprised to see that the only damage was a small wrinkle to a wing tip. I pulled back the green wing tip decal and repaired the wrinkle with some hot water and foam finish.

Now much to my surprise I’ve found that FlyZone (Tower Hobbies) does not offer a replacement set of decals. Here is where I made a big mistake. I’ve gotten complacent with testing adhesives and glues when it come to EPO foam. While EPO foam stands up fine to harsh solvents like acetone, it is NOT impervious to all solvent.  The lack of decal support forced me to try to reactivate /replace the adhesive on the decal. The contact glue I used had MEK in the formulation. The MEK went straight through the skin of the foam bead expanded the bead prior to dissolving the bead. It also went straight through the wing tip to the bottom of the wing. When I noticed this reaction I could have tried to wipe off the contact cement. But I feared that I’d loose any hope of maintaining some shape of the wing tip. I decided it was best to to leave the wing alone for a week and hope that the solvents would dissipate and that what was left of the EPO foam would re-harden. I got lucky in that the foam did re-harden with little permeant damage. I repaired this damage, again with some foam finish. But now my reworked area was large and I had to do something with it, so it didn’t look so bad! I cut away the decal and was forced to hand paint the wing tip. I mixed some Tamyia light green and yellow to get a close color match. If you are color matching the green go heavy on the yellow as the glue pigments come to the surface as the paint dries.

Now that I had actually spent some time (a lot more than I had hoped) on the repair of the model. I felt justified in upgrading her. First is to add flaps. There is an upgrade kit from FlyZone for this. But as the servos are placed standing upright I don’t like it (Flyzone does this so they don’t have to stock reverse rotation servos.) I used their control horns but chose a set of Emax ES08A servos place on their side (just like the aileron servos). Also the factory indicated location for the flaps results in far too small a flap. The flaps should span 40% to 50% of the aileron length. If your radio does not allow mixing the flaps as aileron or you are using ‘Y’ harness for the flaps choose the smaller 40% flap. This is so you still have adequate aileron response.  On my ship I went 50/50 flap and aileron. It appears that all these smaller gliders that have moveable trailing edges need some carbon added the trailing edge to stiffen them. I used some scrap but I’d think some 2mm square would be preferable.

Now here is where I as an experienced glider driver change the force arrangement of the glider. The Calypso as sold today is a V2. This has the stabilizer set so that there is a lot of up trim. This is done to offer some self leveling for the raw beginner. This and the nose heavy recommendation for the Center of Gravity in the manual will force the gliders nose to rise as it gains speed.  If you are anything other than a beginner you don’t want this in a glider. I like to de-mod the V2 fuse and stab back to the V1 version. That is I cut a 2mm wedge from the rear of the stab mount and glue this wedge to the front of the stab mount.  This and placing the center of gravity about 8mm aft of the carbon wing rod results in a close to neutral trimmed glider.

With these modification; larger flaps, stiffer wing trailing edge controls, readjust stabilizer incidence, and aft placement of the center of gravity, the Calypso comes alive as a thermal hunting machine.

There are also a few structural modifications that will help extend the life of the airframe. First is the addition of some carbon support to the front battery tub. I used carbon strips 0.112" x 0.018" from Midwest products.
Second is that there needs to be more structure keeping the wings on the fuselage. As it is the wings act as a lever trying to pry off the top fuselage fairing when the ailerons are deflected. This is a problem as it is this fairing that hold the wings onto the fuselage. I added a center (keel) 1/32 plywood tie down plate to the fuselage in the opening for the wings. I also adder a strip of carbon into the keel center line joint that spans the chord of the wing opening.

While setting up the radio I found that the rudder movement was far too limited by the rudder window in the elevator. I widened this window by 10mm on each side and used this cutoff (waste) to support the rear pushrods.

From experience I have to say I’m not confident in driving 4 let alone 6 servos from a 3 cell lipo battery through a linear BEC. This forced me to replace the stock ESC. I choose a YEP 30 because it has a switching BEC.
Now here is where I went insane. The YEP ESC can support higher cell count batteries. And as I had some low KV 480 sized outrunners (890kV)  I set up my Calypso for 4 1300 mAh cells. I’m driving an Aeronaut 10 x 6 prop using a Maxx Products “turbo” cooling spinner. Current is a cool 28 amps with a stunning vertical acceleration!

This motor installation was a little more than a bolt in. I had to split the nose at the vertical part line and remove the stock motor mount. I had to remove some plastic ahead of the firewall (part of the motor mount) to clear the rear bell of the motor. I reinstalled the motor mount aft as the motor dictated, about 10mm, after opening up the nose about 4mm to clear the rotating can of the outrunner.  Truth be told the stock motor and prop on 3 1300 mAh cell is more than adequate for a 50° to 60° climb!

I will post the radio set up latter. But with the addition of the flaps and other minor modification the Calypso is a very capable ship both as a thermal hunter and long winged aerobatic fun sport ship.

The few short comings left are that the stab is not easily removed for storage and transporting. And the wing really has too much wash out in it to benefit much from camber changing.

Well, now I have a stock power system and Tattic Tx & Rx that needs a home. What to do? I know get an ARF version of the Calypso, and start all over again!

All the best,
Konrad
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Flyzone Calypso upgrade
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Konrad
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« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2017, 09:52:44 PM »

I’m showing the mod to the stab mount back to V1. I'm also showing the flapper sanding disk I used to enlarge the motor opening. Also look at the carbon stiffener across the upper wing fairing.
You can see that I’ve enlarged the rudder window and used the waste as pushrod reinforcements. You can also see that to get the proper trim I have added 24 grams a lead to the tail. Proper trim is far more important to a glider than all up weight, so add weight as needed! But to try to minimize the need to add weight I’ve cut an opening in the tub just in front of the landing gear wheel to allow the rearward placement of the battery.
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Re: Flyzone Calypso upgrade
Re: Flyzone Calypso upgrade
Re: Flyzone Calypso upgrade
Re: Flyzone Calypso upgrade
Re: Flyzone Calypso upgrade
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Konrad
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« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2017, 09:57:05 PM »

Also notice the added trailing edge carbon, servo placement, control horn and servo arm geometries.
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Konrad
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« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2017, 02:01:06 PM »

Sorry posted wrong photo earlier. Here is the annotated photo I meant to post.  As I have the space I'm posting a photo of the rudder window being enlarged
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Konrad
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« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2017, 02:34:02 PM »

Here is that plywood bridge I mentioned trying to tie the upper wing fairing to the fuselage. I'm sorry to say this wasn't as effective as I hoped. The lower part of the plywood insert is only imbedded about 4mm to 5mm into the fuselage. This is because, from the OEM, there is a 10mm to 12mm carbon tube imbedded in the tail boom just under the wing saddle. The insert is placed far enough aft to allow the carbon wing joiner to pass through. It also has no impact on how the wing servo wires lay down in the area of the wing saddle.

If I was to do this again (and I will) I would omit this plywood insert and rely on the carbon stiffener embedded into the upper fairing. (shown earlier).
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Konrad
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« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2017, 06:35:59 PM »

With the CofG set at 10mm to 11mm aft of the very rear of the wing rod (manual states 6mm as the aft limit*) I have my radio set up like this.

The rudder has the push rod at the inner hole on the control horn. And at the servo arm the push rod is set up an the outer most hole. With the TX servo value at 100% movement.
The elevator is opposite of this. The elevator has the push rod at the outer most hole on the control horn. And on the servo side the push rod is set up on the inner most hole of the arm. With the TX servo value set at 120% of movement.

My measured control motion is like this: Measuring the Ailerons at the wing tip I get 15mm up with 13.5mm down. With the Flaps acting like ailerons they move 20mm up and 15mm down measured at the wing root.
In Crow the ailerons go up 17+mm (and in an aileron turn come down to neutral {in profile}), the flaps move down 40mm. With the elevator compensation being 5mm down.

In Speed mode my flaps and ailerons move up about 5mm. In thermal mode they move down 3.5mm

My Elevator movement is 11mm up with 14.5mm down (this differential is to try to get a balance elevator feel while inverted).

Rudder is 45mm each side

I’m just starting to work with the master slave concept of programing in my DX9.
Here are some values I noticed in my radio. Please be aware of how I have set up my servo arms and control horns if you are going to try to copy my set up.

I like to have my flaps act as ailerons. My aileron to flap mix is 70%

For Camber changing the TX values are:
 
Thermal mode Ailerons down 20%, with the Flap down 15%, Elevator compensation is down 4%. (Note; I have more aileron droop than normal. This is because of the excessive wash out in the wings).

Speed mode the ailerons are set 24% up, with the Flaps set 18% up, with Elevator compensation at down 3%

For Crow the TX has these values Flaps -80 (down), the Ailerons go up 53%, with a elevator compensation going to 36% down  after stick is moved down 20%. Flaps also have reversed differential (set at -100%) no upward  aileron mix  movement in crow

I have a motor to elevator mix of 9% down at full power.

I’m sure some of you think I’ve gone overboard with this, and you might be correct. But while the Calypso is an entry level glider she will allow you to grow into more advanced flying. I’d like to see beginner “Glider Drivers" experiment with crow on this model before moving up to larger more advanced models like the Multiplex Heron.

Having fun scaring the Radian XL pilots with this $90 dollar full house glider.

All the best,
Konrad

*The Aft limit is for initial setting of the center of gravity. After the maiden keep moving the CofG aft until the ship responds as you like. (Note; you might have to cut down the control throws as you move the CofG aft).
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« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2017, 10:59:49 AM »

Very interesting.  Thanks for sharing. 
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Konrad
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« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2017, 11:33:56 AM »

You're more than welcomed.

Another issue has come up. On my last outing I was doing a lot of touch and goes. With a glider such as this, with the prop in the front, they are more like skip and goes. The issue that has surfaced is that there are no bearing supports in the fuselage for the axle. This means that the thin wire axle will cut through the fuselage foam on each landing. One needs to add spreader plates to the axle support to protect the fuselage foam.

I'll post how I accomplished this when I accomplish the modification.

I think it's been long over due for Flyzone to come out with a version III of the Calypso. This version III should address durability issues like the canopy tub, the upper wing fairing (wing hold down), and landing gear axle support. These mods should cost around $1 USD at the point of manufacture. (I'd also like to see a lot less washout in the wing tips).

With the demise of the Horizon Radian Pro the market is wide open for an entry level glider that can grow with the new "glider driver" as a tool into the 6 servo gliders. The Calypso is such a tool, and would make a great tool with some simple mods.
While the Rapide http://www.flyzoneplanes.com/airplanes/flza3364/index.html is a step up in performance it is in the other direction, still being a simple 4 servo glider, she is a smaller faster hotliner style model.

All the best,
Konrad

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Konrad
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« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2017, 09:17:32 PM »

Here are the spreader plates I've added to support the landing loads. Flyzone should have added some structure to handle these loads, the 4mm plastic bushing was/is not enough! They should have done something like what Multiplex did with the Heron, added a plastic hoop.

My plates are made from 1.5mm plywood with a 4 mm hole drilled into them. I cut a channel to the outside edge to allow the plates to slip over the wire axel. You will want to make this key hole so that the spreader plates don't fall off the 4 mm bushing when you try to glue them to the sides of the wheel cavity. The Key hole allows you to rotate the plates into position after you have applied the glue.  The plate are 15mm on each side of the hole.  
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