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Mini Talon / Pixhawk 10.1 Miles Out, 24 mph Crosswind

By Derrick W, 03 Nov 2018 into Mini Talon in Fixed Wing Watch on YouTube »

We don't get much of a break from the wind around here... So if I'm going to fly, I have to train myself to get used to it. If you're going to do this, I recommend a great deal of planning. Know which direction you're going to fly and what impact the wind will have on your flight path. A lot of folks like to fly directly into the wind and then with the wind on the way back. That is ideal, but not always possible. Today I had wind coming out of the Northwest, changing to West by Northwest. I cannot fly that direction for many reasons, most importantly, that's toward the airport. Also, I have more elements blocking my antenna range as well - obviously, not a bad thing.

So with a NW wind, I headed Northeast, 45 degrees, but with a crosswind blowing me to the East. I found that locking my heading between 20~25 degrees was sufficient to keep me on course. Unfortunately, turning around, the apparent wind changed from 16 mph to 24 mph apparent wind.

When you're 10 miles away from home and the apparent headwind picks up to 24 mph, it's a bit worrisome. I had to adjust my drift angle to more than 25 degrees to almost 45 degrees, just to stay on track. This burns up a lot of battery and forces the plane to slow down substantially. At some points, my ground speed is only 17 mph. It feels like you're sitting still in the air. However, staying on the correct track home is the most optimal/efficient path.

I'm still amazed by the stability of the Pixhawk controller. I don't think my Vector controller would have fared as well in heavy wind. There are also other characteristics of this Mini Talon which make it perform a bit better, too though. It has faster and strong servos than my Skyhunter, and the Pixhawk is dialed in pretty tightly.

I think I still need to tune my CRUISE mode a bit more as throttle fluctuations seem to happen a lot. Luckily, the MT is really efficient, so even if my TECS config is off a bit, she's very forgiving. Looking at other 10 mile flights on YouTube, folks seem to be using around 3000~3500 mah, and my flight, given all the wind I was fighting ended around 3860. That's not terrible.

Equipment:
Mini Talon
TowerPro M92B servos
Pixhawk v1 FC / Ardupilot
MinimOSD w/MWOSD
Gold Budget version 1500mw 1280 Mhz
Runcam 2
Runcam Micro Split v3
DragonLink v3 Slim
- large 1500mw DL receiver
- Yagi antenna
RMRC VRX
- Yagi antenna
- dipole on secondary VRX
EagleTreeSystems Eagle Eyes diversity
Multistar 4S 8000 mAh battery
T-Motor 2216 1100kv Motor
APC 8x6 prop



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