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Thread: Gadget Show Personal Flight Build

  1. #1
    Hello, after watching last night's episode of the gadget show, I was confused by many things:
    what they were actually trying to achieve?
    Why did they say that full health and safety procedures had been in place when a blade flew off the machine and nearly hit the presenters (shouldn't they have been behind some polycarbonate or equivalent? )?
    And why(although they were very powerful) were they using helicopter motors to lift it?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mega Masher View Post
    Why did they say that full health and safety procedures had been in place when a blade flew off the machine and nearly hit the presenters (shouldn't they have been behind some polycarbonate or equivalent? )?
    I guess it depends on whether that was a risk that was identified and mitigated for - I don't think blades come flying off heli's very often ! Just because you've completed a H&S risk assessment for something doesn't make it risk-free, it just demonstrates that you've used a methodology that's understood to determine and mitigate the risks you have identified.

    Ed

  3. #3
    I built this one - so I'll answer a couple of your questions....

    Firstly they asked us to do it because it's cool - why else?

    On the H&S front - it' easy to sit from behind a keyboard and criticise, however you wouldn't understand just how much H&S work goes into something like this. As Ed said, it's very VERY rare for that issue to occur, and that kind of issue isn't as much of a risk as you would think. Obviously it's going to hurt when it falls on you, however the energy in the blades has fully disipated by the time it gets to the floor (and gave a good 5 seconds to react and walk out of its way). So although its a risk, precautions were taken.

    On the motor side of things, the obvious solution to make a helicopter is to use proven helicopter technology? not sure why we'd use anything else.
    Robo Challenge
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  4. #4
    terry's Avatar
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    Its nice to see you for a few seconds on the show, I know how much effort you put into making their stuff, the hours it takes and they make out that Jason is responsible for it I would be gutted ! Think you should be sticking robo challenge stickers on everything you build too :-)

  5. #5
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    Did you end up getting it to work in the end after filming had stopped? It's a real shame it didn't get proper flight in the end...

  6. #6
    Eventorizon's Avatar
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    Sadly it never flew. It wasn't even turned on again after that.

    The team that make the first Multi-rotor to carry a human [Search E-volo] spend years building and developing their design. RoboChallenge had a few months to repeat the same feat with far less money.

    Even with a off the shelf 3D helicopter, you can spend a whole day solid just setting it up correctly. A typical small multi rotor takes maybe a week. This should have had maybe a month of solid testing before shooting to find and eliminate every bug... we had maybe 6 hours.

    One good thing though is they put Grant as the "Master Engineer" behind the machine, so people will understand that he did virtually all the designing and planning.

  7. #7
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    That's a real shame, that...

    I suppose you can't expect miracles with such vastly reduced amounts of time and money, but it was a very good go at it! I mean, I know nothing about Helicopters, but it did look well on the way to be flying, maybe with some more refinements as you said but in that time there was no way you'd be able to iron out everything...
    That's true too, great that he's been recognised for the work on it instead of them pretending it was all Gadget Show's doing!

    Just out of curiosity too, what happened with all the blades, batteries, motors and speed controllers afterwards?

  8. #8
    Eventorizon's Avatar
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    We had to borrow the batteries, basically cleared out every Class 700/800 Pilots stash for the duration of the shoot and rebuilds.

    Everything else is still attached to the machine... no idea what is happening to them. But as they may want to return to it if a later series we cant get rid of any of it.

  9. #9
    It will fly soon once we've got this really busy period out of the way I will get back onto it. It's just a case of weld up the upper bearing blocks and a few tweaks to the software!
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eventorizon View Post
    We had to borrow the batteries, basically cleared out every Class 700/800 Pilots stash for the duration of the shoot and rebuilds.

    Everything else is still attached to the machine... no idea what is happening to them. But as they may want to return to it if a later series we cant get rid of any of it.
    Ah, I see - I didn't know if any of it had gone to/from other projects!

    I'm sure it will fly too soon! It'll just need tweaking a bit as you said, was definitely on the way for going up, probably had've gone too if that blade hadn't broken on it! Look forward to seeing it return!

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