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Wingtip Srobes

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Metalmaniac

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2003
Messages
58
Location
Hanger 7A, Tulsa Oklahoma
Anybody have any real experience with budget strobe systems? I'm wanting a three-light system that will satisfy the FARs as far as flashes/min etc., but I ain't paying Whelen and the rest of that bunch 7 or 800 bucks for it. We're allowed about anything light-wise in our experimentals but the visibility and coverage have to be the same as a certificated plane. There are lots of things available through various dealers of lighting for cop cars, fire trucks etc. Seems like a guy could get a power pack that would run three heads, a trio of clear lights and some good wire and get after it. Any useful input fellas?
Richard Rokeby - filling holes with rivets in my RV7A
 

StRaNgEdAyS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2003
Messages
816
Location
Northern NSW Australia
Strobes

I'm not sure if this helps, but there are a number of high energy strobe kits avaliabe for the electronic hobbyist.
These are very compact and can easily be tweaked to give out a specific flash/min by altering the value of the charging R/C circuit.
I'd be checking these out, as they could be a viable budget option for you here.:D
 

John Slade

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Joined
Jan 5, 2003
Messages
157
Location
West Palm Beach, FL
I experiemented a little in this area. I bought some build it yourself kits at Sun & Fun for $30 each. They worked fine, but were quite large and I couldn't figure a good way to fit them. Getting good red/green lenses suitable for aviation seems to be a problem. After struggling with various options I gave in and bought Aeroflash.
For what it's worth...
 

StRaNgEdAyS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2003
Messages
816
Location
Northern NSW Australia
strobocop :D

Thank you for your input there.
:D
It was very informative. I am not sure as to the prices of items such as the aerostrobe and the like here in Australia, but I expect I will be finding out one day.
:)
It was interesting how you said it was difficult to scource appropriate standard red/green lenses. One would have thought thiese would have been an easily accessable spare part, after all one might get broken.
Oh well I guess I'll be finding this all out for myself as well, but I trully do appreciate the input. It will certainly make the searching and trial and errors a lot less frustrating when the time comes for me to go through it.
 

John Slade

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2003
Messages
157
Location
West Palm Beach, FL
The ones I used were Aeroflash.

Its not hard to get replacement aviation lenses, just expensive, plus they're usually made as glass domes, and you need a good fit, so you might as well buy the aluminum wingtip light units ... now how do you drive the strobes .... need a power supply... before you know it you have the whole thing.

I've read that some have had sucess driving aviation light units with aftermarket strobe power supplies. As is often the case, the simple way to get onto the next job is to spend the money. :mad:

Good luck.
 

Metalmaniac

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2003
Messages
58
Location
Hanger 7A, Tulsa Oklahoma
Well just the other day I scored a deal on a used Whelen power supply, so I guess I'll go with that. I have to run three heads since the wing-tip units won't be visible from behind. I also came across a nos strobe tube that I picked up mostly just to mess with and learn a little bit. I was a bit surprised to find that the pig tail for the light has no shielding. I'd think that I would need that on a wire running that much voltage but I guess Whelen doesn't figure it that way. Any insight on wire shielding, anybody?

Richard Rokeby - Hanger 7A
Bending ailerons while keeping an eye out for that $3,000 0-360
 

StRaNgEdAyS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2003
Messages
816
Location
Northern NSW Australia
Hey there.
:)
Sheilding and insulation are different things.
To which are you referring?
Sheilding is generally only required where the cable is prone to recieve and/or generate electrical interference, espescially in cases of high frequency operation. Examples of such are, coaxial cable on a receiver/transmitter or the HT leads on your car, both handle electricity of varied voltage and frequency and both are prone to generate and/or recieve interference.
Insulation simply stops the electrical signal from being transmitted to other objects, surfaces or cables.
Generally, for the duty cycle of the strobes, I wouldn't think that sheilding would be necessary.
Pop on in to your local Tandy (Radio Shack) or other similar electronics store and ask them about it. they usually have a reasonable working knowlege of electronic theory, and should be able to help you out.
 

John Slade

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Joined
Jan 5, 2003
Messages
157
Location
West Palm Beach, FL
Pop on in to your local Tandy (Radio Shack) or other similar electronics store and ask them about it. they usually have a reasonable working knowlege of electronic theory...

You must have a different Radio Shack in you're area. I went in my local RS yesterday to buy a diode. I asked the salesgirl where they were and got a blank stare. She asked the manager who came over to help. He knew where they were, and asked if he could assist me further. I asked "do you know what a diode is?" He didn't.
 

StRaNgEdAyS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2003
Messages
816
Location
Northern NSW Australia
**** that would have been frustrating...
The store that I go to, the guys and the girl in there all have either an interest in or some degree of knowledge about the products they stock... I know I have asked them some tricky questions (as only I could) and usually they have been able to come up with an acceptable answer.
 

Metalmaniac

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2003
Messages
58
Location
Hanger 7A, Tulsa Oklahoma
I'm going to run shielded wire out the wing to the tip. With the power supply mounted in the fuselage, radio interference could be a real issue, so I've been told, and getting a pop in the old headset everytime a strobe lights off would be pretty irritating - especially considering what a pain it is to change later. It won't hurt anything if it's not needed, other than a few bucks and some weight. Thanks to all for the input.
Richard
 

StRaNgEdAyS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2003
Messages
816
Location
Northern NSW Australia
Good to hear Richard.
Last night I did some experimenting with a hand held emergency strobe, with a duty cycle of 1 flash / 3 sec, and noticed a small click from the speakers on my comp as it triggered.
I agree this would be quite annoying in a headset.
One additionalt thing to assist in reducing RFI (Radio Frequency Interference) would be to put an inductive choke on the incoming power lead to your Radio set, and if it supports it, a capacitative suppressor on the power input of the HT transformer for the strobes.
This also may help.
Cheers,
Pete.
 

Lee Schaumberg

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2003
Messages
215
Location
Northern Wisconsin
Wingtip strobes and lights

Pete and Richard
I will be installing wing tip lights and strobes made by (lifdhgoid). You know them too! Aircraft use small and unusual stuff. I will hold my wallet and buy somethimg for the job. My lights will be fully faired and visiable all around.
Also the dummys from some of the RS stores are known by me too and avoided if possible. I can still remember when I was taught the resister color code in school. A female instructor said ( while every body was picking thier nose, initialling thier desk, sleeping or what ever) Bad boys rape our young girls but Violet gives willingly! Quality will be gold or silver! Never knew it could be that easy.

_______________________________________________________

Humor does a body good!:ban:
 
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