Maintenance work - what is recommended

Discussion in 'Cinestar 8' started by Wolfgang Armin, Oct 19, 2012.

  1. Wolfgang Armin

    Wolfgang Armin Active Member

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    Hi all,
    my cinestar now has some hours of flight time and I´m beginning to wonder what items should be maintained beside regular checking if all screws, nuts and props are tightened, solder joints. What else?
    I heard bearings in the motor need to be checked.

    Any pro here who wants to share his wisdom? I guess it would be nice to have a check list for most of us and perhaps make flying safer.

    Thanks in advance for any input,
    Wolfgang
     
  2. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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    [Edit: I've added some items suggested by Arthur. Andy. 2012-10-22.]

    Hi Wolfgang:

    The work that I end up doing falls into the preflight, once a week or so and once a month or so -- obviously that time interval depends on how often you fly.

    Here's my off-the-cuff list. I'm sure others will be able to contribute...

    PREFLIGHT

    P1. Check motor alignment by eyeball -- the vertical battery plate posts provide a good visual reference -- just move your eye so the side of the motor casing almost obscures the edge of a post and you can get a pretty good read on whether the motor is vertical.

    P2. Check all propeller blades for nicks, cracks.

    P3. Spin each motor by hand just to get a feel for whether there's anything odd going on.

    P4. If you've used Torque Seal on the metal screws, check that none of them have worked loose.

    P5. Check the motor and LED wires where they enter the outboard ends of the booms. Make sure they're not damaged.

    P6. Gimbal: Check that all the elements of the gimbal are properly aligned. Check the side booms are suitably elevated towards the front. Looking from the front of the gimbal you can move your head so you can make the top edge of the front transverse boom line up with the lower edge of the rear transverse boom. If the two booms are not parallel you can "adjust" the side booms by rotating them around the rear transverse boom -- that's where you'll see misalignment if you land a bit hard. AMHIK.

    [Edit: AJL 2012-10-22]
    P6a. Also check all booms are fully inserted into their boom clamps. (e.g. Gimbal booms are fully inserted into the in-board boom clamps. They can come loose!) Check the main hub booms too.

    P7. Gimbal: Check the landing gear are vertical. Again, this will rotate if your land a little bit hard.

    P8. Gimbal: Check the vertical post is vertical.

    WEEKLY (Approximately)

    W1. Check that all motors are aligned vertically.
    Use a spirit level to level the battery plate in both axes, then hold a spirit level under the outermost pair of motor mounting bolts and it should be level too. Repeat for all motors. Then tighten all screws for the motor mount and the boom clamp on the hub.

    W2. Check the propellers are tight -- if you hold the motor casing you should *just* be able to move the propeller by hand -- at least that's how I have them set. I use a Hitachi electric screwdriver and the torque setting is about 14. ( Hitachi DB3DL2 3.6-Volt 1/4-Inch Hex Drive Screwdriver (means you can remove a prop in about five seconds,m use torque setting 13 for tightening them) http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004Y74AU6/ref=oh_details_o06_s01_i00 with Sunex 810mdmg 1/4-Inch Drive 10-Mm Deep Magnetic Impact Socket (for propeller nuts)http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0076HKPQO/ref=oh_details_o05_s00_i00 )

    W3. Check that the propellers are undamaged. Minor surface scratches seem to be OK. I shine I high intensity LED through the APC props to check for any cracks.

    W4. Check the motors for "run out" -- that is, wobbling of the propeller shaft. I do this by using a ruler resting vertically on the table and measuring where the tip of a propeller blade is on the ruler -- if the other blade does not measure the same distance it could be: (a) a bent propeller, (b) a misaligned motor, or (c) runout on the prop shaft.

    MONTHLY (Approximately)

    M1. Remove the Flight Control and Power Distribution Board from the hub. Check that all capacitors on the PDB are secure. Hot glue them back in place if required.

    M2. Inspect the hub and boom clamps for any physical damage.

    M3. Partial undo and then re-insert the motor bullet connectors, just to make sure the contacts are good.

    M4. Replace the FC and PDB boards and re-seat all the connectors. Reseating the connectors makes sure they're clean.

    M5. Remove and reseat all the connectors for the Navigation Control and the GPS board (also, in my case the Smart On Screen Display board).

    M6. Remove all the propellers and check for cracks around the center hubs of the props. Spin up each motor in turn and listen to the sound -- just to get used to what good motors sound like. A suspect motor will sound different -- more harsh (higher frequency components to the sound).

    [Edit: Items suggested by Arthur. AJL 2012-10-22]
    M7. Check all Lipo batteries for loose wires. Some Lipo balance wires are not silicon wire and, with time, tend to break.

    M8. Discharge and recharge the RC Transmitter Battery. Most of the Radios comes with batteries that tent to have a memory effect, and most of the time a charge cycle will increase their lifespan.

    M9. Check out all controls on the RC Transmitter (e.g. make sure trim switches are working).


    Hope this helps. I'll edit this posting if I think of anything else, or if others come with appropriate items.
    Andy.
     
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  3. Morgan Friedland

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    I always feel so inadequate when I read Andy's posts. :(
     
  4. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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  5. Wolfgang Armin

    Wolfgang Armin Active Member

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    hahahaha
    Wow, now that´s a comprehensive list - exactly what I was hoping for, thanks a big lot, Andy.
     
  6. Arthur Vieira

    Arthur Vieira Flight Squad

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    If I may add some .....
    Post flight day:
    - A good pressurized air over all the electronics and inside the motors will help keep the dirty out of it.

    Monthly:
    - Check all Lipo batteries for loose wires. Some Lipo balance wires are not silicon wire and, with time, tend to break.
    - Another good thing to do, that almost everybody forget about, is to discharge and recharge the RC Transmitter Battery. Most of the Radios comes with batteries that tent to have a memory effect, and most of the time a charge cycle will increase their lifespan.
    - Also a TX check is always a good thing. I had a trim switch not working in the middle of a job.... thrust me it's not pleasant to compensate the trim by hands on the sticks, and that was easy to avoid with a Radio check.

    Good work.
     
  7. Stefan Helborg

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    How do you clean your props. Just with soap water ?
     
  8. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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    I would use a small amount of isopropyl alcohol on a tissue -- avoid wiping it on the hinges and plastic/rubber cushion rings.

    The bigger question is: how did you dirty your props? :)

    Andy

    Forensic Software & sUAV / Drone Analyst : Photographer : Videographer : Pilot (Portland, Oregon, USA): Trees=2, Ground=1, Props=11. :(
    The Ground Is The Limit™
    ---------- Forensic Drone Analyst : Forensic sUAV Analyst : Forensic Unmanned Aircraft Analyst : Forensic Drone Expert
     
  9. Stefan Helborg

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    Ha ha just insects and greace from fingers :)
     

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