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SonicModell AR wing 900 v2 setup

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Robin Mosedale 118/11/2020 20:37:55
104 forum posts
2 photos

I'm new to drones, but not RC.

I'm considering the following setup.

The aim is to explore 'autonomous' flight but within line of sight and primary control manually, exploring replicating correct circuit join, approach and finals.

FPV isn't desired, but merely a means to view OSD of key parameters and observe behaviour.

As such I don't think I need a powerful long range.

I've followed Painless360 and found it helpful

I shall use my Spektrum satellite rxers.

So I'd like to setup around the AR wing 900 (larger wing, lower wing loading - I'm not interested in fast racing)

Matek F765 Wing Flight controller

Beitian BN-880 GPS & Compass Module for iNav & Betaflight

FPV Camera Foxcleer Razor

VTX Eachine TX805

VTX Antenna

Foxeer Lollipop

Airspeed sensor Matek Analogue


FPV for Android

Eachine ROTG02 UVC OTG 5.8G 150CH Diversity Audio FPV Receiver for Android Tablet

Android Phone tx mount

Perhaps a Bluetooth FC adapter.

I'm trying to keep costs reasonable. Even so we're breaking £230 ish

Does this seem a reasonable setup?

Am I cutting cost too much?

Is the GPS accuracy sufficient, or should I invest more (desired 50cm CEP)?

Any advice for someone coming new to fixed wing very welcome.


Is the Beitian GPS accurate enough?

John C20/11/2020 14:22:52
105 forum posts
3 photos

Hi Robin

That all sounds very exciting! I have an AR900 wing which I fly LOS and FPV with a flight controller and iNav. It is an excellent model. Very tough which was good because it took me many crashes to learn the right technique to launch it. This was after 6 years of fixed wing flying. If you have a mate who can launch it for you on its maiden that is very helpful!

If this is your first fixed wing plane (as suggested by your last sentence) I don't think the AR900 Wing is suitable to learn to fly. I would strongly recommend a Bixler or Easy Star type to learn LOS flying a fixed wing plane. A wing is too fast and lacks inherent stability. The INAV Fixed Wing Facebook Group (see link below) also give this same advice. I have an Easy Star but it lacks space in the fuselage to fit a flight controller with GPS. Just use this to learn to fly then move to the AR900 Wing when your feel you have learnt good control and landing skills.

I followed the Painless360 videos to set it up. I suggest that you join the INAV Fixed wing Group who will be much better at answering your questions than I would be. They also have excellent guides at INAV Fixed wing Group website . You will also find useful technical videos at Mr D's YouTube page .

To me your spec all looks good quality. Normally GPS only has an accuracy of about 2m as far as I know. Surveyors use a base station as a reference to get 2cm accuracy but I don't know how that is done.

The Speedy Bee v2 android app is excellent for making iNav adjustment in the field.

The technology is amazing. If you enjoy that sort of thing you may enjoy learning OpenTX. I moved from Spektrum and am very pleased I did.

Good luck and enjoy the experience.


Robin Mosedale 121/11/2020 14:13:46
104 forum posts
2 photos

My goodness, thank you John.

I was on the point of committing to the AR wing when I logged onto RC Groups.

The manner of launch looks horrible, and although I was going to implement the INav 'launch' mode, it would need experimentation and tuning.

And, and this is a big AND.

It looks as though most of the wings fly hot.

Now, in perspective.

I do fly fixed wing, have done for decades. My current hack is a Pitts S2a with AS3X (Thank goodness).

I do have a Stuka waiting to be test crashed, and a Muliplex FunMan which is utilitarian and doesn't handle very well, together with about a dozen indoor fixed wing and micro heli's.

I could probably handle the AR wing, with stabilisation switched on, but that is not the point.

Most of the examples that I've seen have a stall speed of at least 30 mph. The Piper Warrier that I fly full size has a stall speed not much more than that (around 55 pushing it ideal), and the Robin R2112 even less.


These must be flying bricks.

Not what I want at all. So thank you for warning me. In order to experiment with patterns that I want, most would be in circuit join, downwind or approach configuration speeds. These wouldn't even understand that.

It looks as though I'm going to have a serious think.

I would prefer something as you suggest. Bixler However, I suspect that it's flight envelope is good because of the low wing loading, and I'll take a look at it's assembly, but that wingspan is big, and the space and fitment seems cramped.

I'd prefer a pusher, as I wish to fit the pitot in the nose, or somewhere on the fuselage.

I have briefly looked at some of the twin boom models and this, the ZOHD Drift:-



I presume that the smaller ZOD Dart is even more of a bullet.

Difficult when shops aren't around. I've certainly wandered around the INAV fixed wing group.


Some quiet thought me thinks.

If you have any more suggestions as to airfames, that would be really helpful



Edited By Robin Mosedale 1 on 21/11/2020 14:29:55

John C21/11/2020 19:21:44
105 forum posts
3 photos

With your flying experience you should be fine with the AR900 Wing. The AR900 Wing with a 3S 2200mAh lipo doesn't have a high wing loading and I would estimate has a stall speed similar to my WOT4 foam-e. When setting up iNav it is important to be able to launch and fly the model in manual mode to trim it before setting up the other modes in the progression recommended. Nav Launch comes much later and is the most challenging to get right in my experience. I launch my AR900 in Manual Mode with my left hand (right hand on stick ready to control it) by holding the front of the port wing near the root and use a back hand throw which is quite low and nose pointing up about 30 degrees. The great thing is that crashes on launching don't tend to break it (on playing field grass). It has the advantage of having lots of room and easy access for fitting all the iNav gear your want.

The ZOHD Drift looks very interesting and could be just the job for your project. I have read that in a dive the wings (I think it was) can twist and it is not possible to pull out of the dive. See Paweł Spychalski's YT video. In light winds and if kept under say 200' below the strong thermals this should not be a problem (in strong thermals I had to spin my Radian down to avoid the wings breaking off!). The Drift seems to be quite floaty.

The Volantex Ranger 1600 may be another option. I have never seen or flown one but it may be suitable. Have you looked at Andrew Newton's YT channel and also RagTheNuttsOff? Both these guys are very experienced RC pilots and say what they think and suggest any modifications required. The Ranger 1600 seems to have just enough space inside the fuselage and seems to fly very well.

I haven't flown the ZOHD Dart but I think the AR900 wing would be more docile and suitable.

With iNav ailerons are a good idea to allow it to stabilise the roll axis. I looked into setting up iNav in my Easy Star (without ailerons) and there was inadequate guidance on how to set it up in a rudder only model.


Robin Mosedale 122/11/2020 12:36:49
104 forum posts
2 photos

Thanks again John, plenty food for thought

Robin Mosedale 124/11/2020 16:30:02
104 forum posts
2 photos

Almost settled on the upgraded ZOHD Nano Talon Evo

But on hold. It seems that the market has frozen. Nothing available even from Bangood until late December

John C24/11/2020 19:25:29
105 forum posts
3 photos

That looks like a very nice model. I hope it comes back into stock soon for you!

Let us know how you get on.

Good luck, John

Robin Mosedale 124/11/2020 20:11:13
104 forum posts
2 photos

I'm more than grateful John.

I've joined the INAV group, already familiar with Ardupilot, watched hours of Andrew Neall and followed through with painless360 as a cross check.

The original Nano Talon wasn't very good quality, but looks as though the Evo has fixed those issues.

It's small enough to chuck on the passenger seat of the Spyder, and easily into the somewhat limited interior of an otherwise massive Maserati otherwise I would have gone with your suggestions of the glider like things that you recommended.

And looks an easier (safer) launch than the AR wing, and has a wide speed envelope, and plenty space to put the pitot in the nose, compass away from interference, and enough space for VTX for OSD, small FPV camera and a Lollypop antenna out of the way.

Also has a reinforced skid underneath which I can beef up for concrete landings.

Very many thanks again

John C25/11/2020 13:10:10
105 forum posts
3 photos

It is amazingly portable and looks as if it will fit your requirements well.

I'm sure you will keep it as light as possible to keep the wing loading low. I did this with my AR900 wing but it needed some experimenting with equipment locations before committing. The challenge was to get the right CG with a light lipo which needed to be far forward. Some large Talons are built for long range and look as if they need a very strong throw to get them into the air!

Robin Mosedale 125/11/2020 16:16:46
104 forum posts
2 photos

By chance just picked one up on Ebay. Only opened box but not constructed

John C25/11/2020 19:57:04
105 forum posts
3 photos

You struck lucky!

I hope you gets lots of pleasure setting it up with iNav. For me that is part of the fun and when it doesn't work properly the challenge of narrowing down what I have done wrong!

Robin Mosedale 125/11/2020 21:17:35
104 forum posts
2 photos

Jammy eh?

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