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Speed controllers

R/C Submarine modelers

Speed controllers

Postby Wayne Frey » Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:14 pm

Ok, why am I the one starting all the threads? :D
Ok, I have heard the Viper speed controller has caused a fellow submariner some problems. More than one shorted out on him. I thought they are supposed to do pretty good..
So, I pose to the board, what are your experiances with different brands, and which one did/do you have the best luck with?
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Sub culture » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:53 pm

For brushed motors I use microgyros ESC, which are excellent quality and tough as you like. The latest versions have a programmable timed failsafe, which you can set to 2 seconds, specially designed for submarines to prevent unwanted glitching. They have a very wide voltage range- up to 26 volts, so you can run a 24 volt system if you choose. You can program deadband, throttle response, and there is a small jumper that enables easy connection/diconnection of the onboard BEC.

For smaller models with brushed motors, I use CTI Thor controllers. I've only seen these for sale in Germany. They are very small (about the size of a postage stamp) and can handle about 15A of current.

For brushless motors I use Castle Creations ESC's.
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Carcharadon » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:12 pm

I make my own because I need 24 volts and high amps.
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Sub culture » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:33 pm

Well the controllers I have go up to 25A continuous. At 24 volts that is 600 watts, that's got to be enough for any model sub surely?
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Want to dive your boat in crystal clear water? Then you had better Dive-in- http://www.diveintomodelsubmarines.co.uk
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby JWLaRue » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:35 pm

I have very good service from the Mtroniks line of ESCs, from the lower end 10 amp units up to the 30 amp ones. The ones I use have a built-in BEC, which helps to save space. (for failsafe operations, I use the capabilities of the receiver, e.g. Sombra Labs programmable units)

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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Wayne Frey » Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:08 pm

I had heard Mtroniks was good. Thats why I posted. No better place than here to find out.
Feedback guys!! Experiance is valuable!
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Wayne Frey » Sat Apr 07, 2012 7:06 am

I see Mtroniks has a "tio" line of marine Viper controllers specifically for lipo batteries.
Has anyone started using these, and are they different enough to warrent more of our vendors to carry them, and maybe they do, but just don't list the line of tios yet?
Running a Speed 500 marine motor with 3 plus to 1 gearing, anyone have an idea which of the controllers I need. I don't mind going larger than I need, to be safe.
Edit. I just broke the man code and read the side of the motor box. Looks like a Viper 10 would work, and a 15 should be more than enough. I don't see a down side to running a 15, as far as I can tell.
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Sub culture » Sat Apr 07, 2012 11:47 am

Chap on another forum tried one of the Tio ESC's with Lipo's, he found it kept tripping out with the Lipo monitor set in.

You could avoid using Lipo's altogether, and have a look at LiFE batteries, which are far less sensitive to over discharge, and retain many of the benefits of Lipo, like energy density and high current capability.

I would go for a 15 for a speed 500.
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Wayne Frey » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:30 pm

A LiFE battery? Never heard of it. But open to something new. Is that the latest and greatest? If I did go with Lipo anyway, would I be better off getting a viper 15 without the "tio" feature?
The board sure is quiet!! Only a couple of guys jump in! Come on now, even big dave is quiet!
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Sub culture » Sat Apr 07, 2012 2:14 pm

Just Google LiFE or A123, and all will be revealed. Different battery chemistry to Lipo, there are pros and cons to each, I think the pros outweigh the cons with regards to using them in model submarines, but of course opinions on these things can be very subjective.
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Wayne Frey » Sat Apr 07, 2012 2:21 pm

And using non-tio Vipers with li pos. Thoughts, anyone?
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Sub culture » Sat Apr 07, 2012 3:20 pm

I don't think you'll get many responses regarding the use of Tio's- they're very new controllers and it's doubtful many are using them yet. What I would say is look carefully at the specs, as some of the Tio range differ in voltage range. The 'Rock C' Tio looks quite interesting for submarine use- it comes with a 5A BEC as standard- no worries overloading that one!

I've been using lipos in model aeroplanes for about a decade now, and I will say that the only time I wrecked a pack was when using a controller without some form of shut-off.

If you're going to use a standard controller then I seriously recommend fitting one of the KMC designs Lipo guards which is the only device I know of that kind purposely designed for submarines. Alternative Lipo alarm designs sound a buzzer or flash lights, the former is a fat lot of use if your boat is underwater, and the latter would need to be mounted externally if you're going to spot it in time.

If you don't fit a monitor, then you should limit the length of your run time and make sure you program a timer on the TX to let you know when it's time to bring the boat in.
'Why are you staring at an empty pond?'

Want to dive your boat in crystal clear water? Then you had better Dive-in- http://www.diveintomodelsubmarines.co.uk
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Giovanni » Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:50 pm

I use LiFe batteries in all of my marine systems, LiPo in all of my aircraft and NiMH in my radios.
LiFe is small enough , durable and dense.
LiPo is lightweight , small and very fast charging.
NiMH is easy to charge and very durable for radios.
Kind regards,
Giovanni

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Re: Speed controllers

Postby GreyAkula52 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 6:16 pm

Okay!.....
Listen Up
I Have Been Building Model R/C Subs Before I Knew Skip Assay and Merriman Existed.
That's A Fact... I started In 1977, With Out Any Help And Had To Learn Like They did....
The "Hard Way". Spelled ..EXPENSIVE PARTS BURNED UP OR JACKED TO OBLIVION!
I Have Tried Speed Controllers For Cars Some With Reverse Some With Braking Some With
Cooling Fins and All Made By Reputable Manufacturers. Futaba, Etc.
There Are Lots Of Makers But For Rugged Dependability I Have Been Using Vantec Units
From Their Single Motor Units Running Single and Twin Motors ( Depending On Amp Draw,
Too their Dual Forward And Reverse Units (Used In Robots) With Zero! Failures.
Now I Will Admit, They Have A Whine At Low RPMs But At Geared Down Speeds They Are
As Good As You Can Make A "Near Bullet Proof" Unit Get. They Are Not All Cheap But They Last
And Some, If You Are, Electrically Inclined, Can Be User Service Able. I Have Upgraded Several
Lower End Single Forward/ Reverse Unit With More Efficient Power Transistors and They Are Still
Working ( Even After Pressure Hull Flooding ) To this Day!
So, If You Are Tired Of Playing Around...... Get A "Real Unit!
Sorry If I Stepped On any Toes...... So Move Your Feet! :wink:

Captain Andre
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Re: Speed controllers

Postby Wayne Frey » Sun Apr 08, 2012 7:48 am

Andre,
No offense taken! Experiance always is best. And years of that gets deserved repect of your opinion.
I looked at the Vantek site. Prices are not that bad. But, again, your experiance.
Which one works? Say, in my situation, a 500 speed on a 3.8 gear reduction. If it works day in and out, that is a good thing.
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