Monday, March 29, 2010

Vesaero Plans

Some of you have expressed interest in these plans. I am planning on open sourcing these plans. Standard Creative Commons license applies.

I haven’t planned initially to open source the project so these plans will come up slowly as I have time to digitize and plan out how to best present them to you for building.

Vasaero-Wing

first up is the primary wing. Measurements are in CM. My plane is scaled up with a factor of 4.7. That means that to obtain the full scale wingspan you take 15cm as listed in the diagram and multiply by 4.7 to obtain 70.5cm (15 x 4.7 = 70.5cm).

To get the angled wings you will need to use the wing scaffolds during build while gluing to obtain the correct angle on each wing. Cut each bend leaving a tiny bit of material then fold back to expose a gap. Use the scaffolds to obtain the correct angle of the gap then fill the gap with hot glue.

The vertical stabilizers (v-tail) I created ad-hoc but I’ll try and digitize a version here as well.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Vesaero Post Flight Test 1 Modifications

HPIM6378

Lol I had a duh moment. The Vesaero is designed to look like a jet I should’ve clued in that that means it will also fly like a jet. First flights have shown that the Vesaero has an average cruise speed of 50 km/h. This is a tad high for a beginner with zero flight experience.

There are also some minor flight issues as well. For one the plane has a nasty habit of stalling once you get down to 10 km/h speeds. Flaps alone don’t seem to provide enough lift.

The dihedral which doesn’t look like a lot ended up being a very obvious flight characteristic the plane loves to self-right itself in flight. although this is great for the beginner I can see how more advanced pilots would struggle to keep a plane like this on knife edge. The intension however was never to build the plane for knife-edge moves so this wasn’t a bit surprise.

The position of the v-tails also puts the v-tail at risk of deep-stalling. A condition that is common to planes with controls surfaces that could be blocked by the wing during high angles of attack.


524px-Deep_stall


The Final design oversight has to do with super maneuverability. Saying Vesaero is agile is an understatement. Vasaero’s wing design and CG is modeled after an 3D helicopter. It’s CG balance point is located exactly where the cord of the wing is the thickest. Designing the plane this way makes the plane very easy to pitch, as well as roll.

The plane is super maneuverable in that too much pitch input from the pilot will cause the plane to “over-G” and over AoA quickly rapidly bleeding off airspeed without warning until stall is achieved. In this respect Vesaero handles very much like a Su-37 when they do the mid-air flips.

The key difference is the Su-37 and all other modern jets have a thrust to weight ratio of over 1.06:1 the best I can estimate my jet is only producing a power to weight of around 0.6:1 which puts it in line with jets of yester-year like the F-4 phantom.

All most of this means is that the plane is more capable than the pilot can currently handle so I’m putting in some modifications to make it behave more like a glider and less like a jet.

HPIM6386

HPIM6387

In order to slow down the jet I realized that I needed to decrease wing loading in order to increase “float”. I’ve tapped on removable wing extensions for this purpose. The wing extensions serve to double the length of the wing adding to the lifting surface. Care has been taken to maintain the proper CG even with the extension. The new body to wing ratio is now ~0.5:1 (almost double wingspan to body length).

Also after the first few test flights I noticed that just foam on the control horns was starting to wear out so these have also been improved to be much more rigid by adding plastic reinforcement members.

HPIM6388

HPIM6389

The new servo arrangement has RC helicopter like levels of rigidity and should help control the plane a lot snappier.

One minor consideration that needs to be tested in this new setup is the trainer wings add a lot of wing-span but fail to move the aileron controls out more this could lead to decreased control in roll.

In terms of damage resistance the airframe is very resistant to damages the V-tails clear the ground making hitting them during a crash near impossible. The nose cone is double reinforced and designed to deform a very severe crash had the plane drop nose first 3 stories straight into the ground the nose was easily repaired after. The modular design of the nose cone has also seen very nice crash repair characteristics. Often time only 1 or 2 panels need to be re-cut from foam for the repair but not all of them.

Overall I’m pretty happy with the design the one thing that needs to be improved is the power plant it feels somewhat underpowered to be able to call itself a jet. I also definitely need a much wider space to test it in the future as this plane likes to go fast.

Vesaero build log 3

More work on Vesaero 2 days ago I managed to finish building the nose cone.

Originally I decided to go with a 2D profile design but with more thought I decided this wasn’t going to be cool enough for a “Vortex” build.

So I popped into Google Sketch-up and came up with this nose design:

 

nosecone2 nosecone2-splitLnosecone2-splitM

The original Google sketchup work file can be found here if you want to take a closer look.

So with a lot of careful cutting of each of the triangles and a lot of gluing the finished Vesaero build looks as follows:

HPIM6372

HPIM6374

HPIM6378

HPIM6379

HPIM6380

HPIM6381

HPIM6384

HPIM6383

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Multiplayer Gaming Console vs PC

Me and a friend had an interesting discussion concerning multiplayer gaming experiences on the console vs the PC. We looked at several areas of both technical details and also personal subjective experiences with the community on both and below is some of what we feel is a representative list of average experience differences you can expect on both.

Game Size

We found that the console game size ranged from the average 4vs4 to a max of 8vs8. PC’s on the other hand started at around 8vs8 and seemed to reach their upper limit close to 25vs25 for many games that we tried.

Because of these differences we found that console multiplayer maps often placed players in a much smaller environments forcing players to run into each other more often.

PC environments especially the ones chosen for larger matches tend to be quite expansive and often required a level of team co-ordination in order to win.

On the flip side these same maps don’t scale well when there’s only a 4vs4 game. Think of games like TF2 these games only start to be playable at 8vs8 on the PC.

 

Player Mentality

One major difference is the player psyche of the console gamer and the PC gamer. We found that often times PC gamers lean more towards a true team co-ordinated effort vs what we found in consoles where although everyone is playing together there is no communication as to common strategy.

Worse still was we found that in many “team” based console games players would purposely undermine you in order to appear higher on the scoreboard rather than assist each other to come up with an overall victory.

 

Player Communication

This one was interesting before I played on the xbox 360 I always assumed that since everyone had a mic it was used to great effect in games. This turned out to be very untrue most games (I’m looking at you MW2) communication consists of complaints random burping noise or your one friend trying to tell you some useful info before he’s abruptly cut off by the next pre-pubescent teen in a rage scream because they just got killed.

PC communication is tricky although almost all games released now have mic support many still prefer to use the keyboard and do so to high efficiency. It is a bit disconnecting when half your players are typing and half ar talking. However the quality of in game chat is dramatically different the talkers are usually people that are actually talking about tactics or actively participating in how the game is unfolding. In almost all cases random people you meet are helpful and civil. The text chats can sometimes have bad comments thrown around but these are far easier to ignore and it would appear that these people are far to embarrassed to take their jack-assery in to pollute the voice channel.

 

Network

Xbox live is a fenced garden that you have to pay monthly for. Admittedly it’s a lot more populated than PSN I found that for several games on PSN matchmaking would just be unable to pair you up with someone due to lack of players for games just a few months after launch. The possibility of hosting your own server where the server op can play with the rules a bit is also gone.

In contrast because almost all PC’s are internet connected. Current games number in the thousands you’ll never have problems with match making. However things like a shared friend list and joining a friends game are less than automated on the PC unless you have steam.

 

Extended Play

Consoles simply don’t have the capability of creating more content for the game by the users. Aside from a select few examples consoles are purely you play what the publishers want you to play and that’s that.

True multiplayer PC gaming however has always had a hand in the modding scene in fact a lot of the best game ideas come to us first as experimental game concept ideas. With people running custom servers player driven content is loaded onto these custom servers and then players around the world tired with the stock experience can just go nuts with mods. Mods can sometimes be extremely entertaining but also completely mis-understood by publishers do it will never make it into a DLC.

 

Conclusions

This article really wasn’t suppose to point finger or conclude anything. It’s main purpose is to point out that the two platforms just from their heritage has some different expectations to them. I think it’s these gaps that PC gamers and Console gamers will never really see eye to eye.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Build Log 2

Well today I finally got off my lazy ass and started to build the full sized version of VESAREO RC foam plane.

You can see from the pictures that it’s a manageable size when it’s fully built I’m not there yet right now I’m having issues figuring out how to mount the motor onto the main foamie frame.

The whole plane so far is built using hot melt glue which would come apart if I use it to attach the motor. Ideally I would like some form of firewall or motor mount so I can easily remove the motor. Something like a box the motor can fit in and screw onto the box itself as long as it doesn’t transfer heat would be hot melt glued to the plane.

So far in the interim here’s what it looks like.

 

FullSizedFullsizedComparison