## Ford C-Max Energi Part 4

On Monday January 7 of this last week, we put our first fill-up in the car. The odometer was reading 574 miles, subtract the 59 miles we started with (presumably on a full tank at the dealer) and that’s 515 miles on 12.45 gallons of fuel. We averaged 41.36mpg. Remember, Ford states not to judge mileage for at least the first 1000 miles.

A few thoughts come to mind:

1. The car says 230 miles have been driven on electricity, the balance of 344 miles driven on fuel. I’m a little confused here. Did we only go 344 miles on our 12.45 gallons of fuel. Yikes, that would be terrible mileage?? I need to dig in to the displays to see make sure the 574 is overall mileage as I am presuming and not just the fuel driven miles. Is my presumption wrong here?

2. Remember, midway through the tank, I changed the calculation from MPGe to MPG. It would be interesting to know if that effected anything or if there was a recalculation of the entire fuel/electric consumption so it reflected accurately at the time of the change.

3. I have not reset anything as of yet. I will perhaps do that when we get to 1, 2 or 3k so as not to have the break in miles figured into our average. Many cars don’t really give you a “since reset” average but rather a rolling average of only the last 300 miles or so. I’ll be interested to see how this car calculates that.

4. It’s notable the MPG calculator @ 40.7mpg is very close to my calculation of 41.36.

5. I hope I am not boring any readers. Writing along as I learn about the car. I’ll try to keep it down to 1 post a week on this subject. Expect them on Sunday’s. From here up was written on Jan 7th.

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01/08/13 Notes: Bev actually reset the mileage computer when we filled it up, her habit with the Civic Hybrid. I discovered this when she returned from work today and I noticed the reading slightly over 50mpg.

## Worlds First Electric Heli Kit

The following photo and description is from Frank Beafore of Select Tech GeoSpatial. Frank has become a modeling enthusiast and UAV manufacturer as well. It appears to be an example of the first ever electric powered RC helicopter that was manufactured for general sale to the public. It’s an interesting unit. If you know more about it or the history of hobbiest early electric helicopters, please stick in a comment.

Dave/Lisa

Attached is a photo of the first electric RC helicopter offered to model builders back in 1981. It was manufactured by Ishimasa Co, LTD, Tokyo. It used NiCad batteries with less than a 2 min. flight time. To train on it, you needed a 25 foot umbilical to supply current to keep it going. The tail rotor was coupled to the main drive via a fragile rubber belt that broke in mid flight. I do not think that it was 3-D capable.

I was lucky to get all the spare parts and the original instructions.

Cheers – FB

Below is a link to a website dedicated to Vintage RC Helicopters with lot’s of photo’s of this kit.

Vintage Radio Control Helicopter: VHRC Website

Video:

Whew, could you make the barnfind below a flyer???

Holly Dust-mites Batman!

## Being A Good Test Pilot: Part 3, On the Wheels

A continuing series on how to be a solid test flight, we continue……

Check the RX pack, that it’s state of charge is high. For an electric model. Verify with the owner that the pack is full. When was it last charged? Did you do any setup on the bench after the last charge? If everything is not fresh, freshen it up now.

Ok, we’ve been a second set of eyes and looked over the model, both mechanics and setup (throws etc..). Now it’s time to run the engine or the motor if it’s electric. For fuel engines, we are looking for a good transition from idle to wide open throttle. Also, a good prolonged idle with instant acceleration to wide open throttle is a sign of a well tuned engine. For an electric model, we are looking for the ESC to properly arm and for the motor to reliably start. Take the motor from off to full throttle several times with different rates of increase on the stick. Make sure it’s not going to have a timing issue and fail to increase from some point of the throttle.

It’s never a bad idea to hold a model and feel the wide open throttle power for just a few seconds. This can be a heads up if a model is under powered and will take a longer take-off distance and shallower climb angle or perhaps so overpowered that it wouldn’t be advisable to take off at full throttle. I have encountered many models at both ends of the spectrum.

Standing behind the model, ALWAYS one stick at a time, move the controls and make sure everything is moving in the right direction. Check it twice.

Do a taxi test to make sure the model tracks well with neutral rudder trim. If it needs more than a little adjustment, fix it before you fly. Avoid taxing so fast that you accidentally end up in the air. This test can be as simple as driving in a figure of 8 and a couple of straight lines to see if it rolls straight. When doing your figure 8’s, are you getting adequate right and left turns? How tight are they? My clubs paved strip is about 40′ wide. A good amount of steering for a tricycle gear ship on the ground will allow me to do a figure 8 just barely in the width of the runway (turns around a 10′ radius). If it’s much tighter than that, it’s going to become very sensitive as the ground speed increases. If it’s a tail dragger, it can as tight as 1.5 to 2 figure 8’s in a 40′ long area (turns around 5-7.5′ radius). Tail draggers usually lift the tail and the wheel becomes non-effectual around 10 or 15mph, so there is no wheel on the ground at higher speeds to be a problem.

Before we fly……………To be continued…

## The Man Aviation History Almost Forgot

by Bob Taylor

Three men were involved in the invention and development of the first powered airplane-that’s right three. Everyone knows about the Wright brothers, but that third man was Charles E. “Charlie” Taylor, a quiet genius who loved cigars and the sound of machinery. Although he contributed to one of man’s greatest achievements, “Powered Flight,” his name was almost lost in aviation history–until now–and if it hadn’t been for Charlie that first powered airplane would never have gotten off the ground……

A worthwhile read, the history behind history.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.  To read the full story on AvStop Magazine: The Man Aviation History Almost Forgot

## First Manned Multicopter Takes Flight!

Check it out, see if you can figure out the controller logic to make this safe as possible. A step beyon fly-by-wire for certain. Maybe with some aluminum, rivits and 4 quad boards you too could be seated above a blender. 😉

Dave