Low voltage

A KAP rig is a useful thing. I was asked to prepare a rectified photographic survey of a floor so I loaded up the car with step ladder, DSLR, a section of wide and very wide lenses, tripods etc. I packed my KAP kit in the hope I might have the time to fly. On arrival at site I discovered I’d need to get the camera higher than expected and the light-weight and video preview of the KAP rig was my best option; it was going to be PAP or fail! I managed to improvise 7m elevation using a stepladder and tripod combination.

The price for this was some serious draining of the batteries- By 3pm on the second day the Tx (transmitter) unit started beeping unpleasantly at an indicated 8volts. It had dropped from a healthy 11v at the start. The beeping just wouldn’t stop and it was really ruining my concentration so I took the only reasonable action I could (as I’d left my charger 140 miles away..)These things are designed to get a radio controlled model aircraft down safely before control ( and presumably the aircraft) is lost, something I don’t need to worry about ( my aircraft is tied to me with string!) so, armed with the trusty Swiss Army knife, I opened the case of the unit and ripped out the offending speaker. An hour later, having got the paid work done and with the last few volts (7.5) left I took to the air in a blustery 15-18mph South-westerly. I found the rotor off the building all too quickly and retreated to a safe distance to take these shots without video link. As I walked the kite around the building I noticed, after about half an hour, the rig failed to respond to the dead radio I held in my hand.

I’ll be swapping out the NiMh batteries for LiPo soon in a bid to get some weight off the rig but this set really worked well, in all I reckon I got something like 7 hours from a 2800MAh set powering a video receiver and RC transmitter. Killing the beep gave me about an hour but with insufficient current to run the video receiver for the last half hour… the beeping is still ringing in my ears mind!

More on Attingham Park here


About billboyheritagesurvey

Heritage worker
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