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Is there any free download similar to Motocalc?

Old 06-14-2006, 05:56 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by rcpilot View Post
I tend to agree with Jeremy Z and Qban that the $40 (sorry $39) is worth spending on a wattmeter.

This is precisely why I was looking for (a basic stripped down) free version similar to motocalc so that I could compute some ballpark figures which would serve as a start point. Thereafter these figures could be verified/confirmed with actual readings and refined. This is a hobby and not rocket science and some approximation to be expected in real life. I really woudn't complain if predictions were as far as 25% off.

'And please do not think I am into Motocalc bashing - I sincerely believe that they have done a good job and are extremely nice in offering a downloadable, free, 30 day evaluation, full feature version. But with other online free versions one is rather tempted not to buy Motocalc (I guess most of us want to stretch our modeling dollars). I found P-cal was OK and gives a good starting point.
I am cheap.

Why pay for software when something as good as P-Calc is available free online?

P-Calc used in conjunction with a WattMeter do an exemplary job.
 
Old 06-14-2006, 05:59 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by willhaney View Post
rcgroups.com is down right now. Thought I'd give this place a shot. I like what I see so far.

Will
YUP!

RCG has been down since around 11 PM or so.

At least that's the first time I tried to access it last night.
 
Old 06-14-2006, 07:18 AM
  #28  
DIVER DON
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Originally Posted by qban_flyer View Post
I am cheap.

Why pay for software when something as good as P-Calc is available free online?

P-Calc used in conjunction with a WattMeter do an exemplary job.
Hey, If it works for you,great!
You get what you pay for.

Considering all the money I have spent on this hobby?, $39 is peanuts.

Just my opinion. It works for me.

DD
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Old 06-14-2006, 03:09 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by DIVER DON View Post
I agree that a watt meter is a must for E-RC but what good does it do you if you don't have the motor in hand.
I think MotorCalc is the best money I ever spent in this hobby.
It has its limitations ,but if used to get you into the ball park on a gas to electric conversion, it's invaluable.
As mentioned, you can add motors, batts, ESC's, etc from user updates or your own info from manufacturer specs.
I my opinion it is money well spent.
DD
Don

You do have a point - but I'd like to point out that there is often a wealth of information on the brushless motors from the manufacturer themselves. They usually recommend the proper setup i.e. how many batteries and prop size and and give fairly good figures on static amps and static thrust.

Static amps and thrust are very useful for the 3D flyer and is very relevant to that kind of flying. However this figure must be used with caution with regular aircraft as matching the prop to the aircraft is usually the trick (no point putting a high pitch prop on a low speed lazy flyer and vice cersa). This is best achieved by experimentation and no program can really predict a golden solution which will work immediately.

If you examine Motocalc you'll find a fair amount of approximation and an emprical approach. For example the aircraft discriptor is absolutely emprical (general shape of aerofoil, general thickness, type of fuselage, no facilty to declare wing aspect ratio, taper ratio or whether it is a biplane etc). Perhaps the motors and batteries are modeled more accurately - I really can't say.

'And the plethora of graphs the program spews out - God ! do ordinary folks really interpret and digest that volume of info and translate it to a design specification - I think not (Of course there is the odd rocket scientist amongst us who really can - but so few).

A wattmeter tells us the most important fact - are you cooking your motor and ESC or not. I think that is very important fact and the watts to the pound rule (again emprical) works really fine.

50 watt/lb - simple flyer
75 watt/lb - good sport flyer
100+ watts/lb - may go into orbit unassisted

Anyway just sharing my thoughts - those with Motocalc do play with it and enjoy yourselves - but remember its only an approximation. BTW I too enjoyed Motocalc for the 30 day free trial period - but I soon got tired of it.

My apologies to Motocalc users in case you are offended - that's not the aim of this post
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Old 06-14-2006, 03:26 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by rcpilot View Post
Don

You do have a point - but I'd like to point out that there is often a wealth of information on the brushless motors from the manufacturer themselves. They usually recommend the proper setup i.e. how many batteries and prop size and and give fairly good figures on static amps and static thrust.

Static amps and thrust are very useful for the 3D flyer and is very relevant to that kind of flying. However this figure must be used with caution with regular aircraft as matching the prop to the aircraft is usually the trick (no point putting a high pitch prop on a low speed lazy flyer and vice cersa). This is best achieved by experimentation and no program can really predict a golden solution which will work immediately.

If you examine Motocalc you'll find a fair amount of approximation and an emprical approach. For example the aircraft discriptor is absolutely emprical (general shape of aerofoil, general thickness, type of fuselage, no facilty to declare wing aspect ratio, taper ratio or whether it is a biplane etc). Perhaps the motors and batteries are modeled more accurately - I really can't say.

'And the plethora of graphs the program spews out - God ! do ordinary folks really interpret and digest that volume of info and translate it to a design specification - I think not (Of course there is the odd rocket scientist amongst us who really can - but so few).

A wattmeter tells us the most important fact - are you cooking your motor and ESC or not. I think that is very important fact and the watts to the pound rule (again emprical) works really fine.

50 watt/lb - simple flyer
75 watt/lb - good sport flyer
100+ watts/lb - may go into orbit unassisted

Anyway just sharing my thoughts - those with Motocalc do play with it and enjoy yourselves - but remember its only an approximation. BTW I too enjoyed Motocalc for the 30 day free trial period - but I soon got tired of it.

My apologies to Motocalc users in case you are offended - that's not the aim of this post
I used to "play" with E-Calc for hours on end. It now languishes on the hard drive of one of my PCs, forgotten and unused.

Was it a waste of money? Nope! It was amusing to sit there and dream up all kinds of power plant scenarios. I got my money's worth out of it.

I believe I got what I paid for.
 
Old 06-14-2006, 04:36 PM
  #31  
rcpilot
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Originally Posted by qban_flyer View Post
I used to "play" with E-Calc for hours on end. It now languishes on the hard drive of one of my PCs, forgotten and unused.

Was it a waste of money? Nope! It was amusing to sit there and dream up all kinds of power plant scenarios. I got my money's worth out of it.

I believe I got what I paid for.
HA! HA! Qban - you got me there

If I take into account all the day dreaming and wonderful aircraft that I put together in my head while playing on Motocal I guess $39 is indeed a small price.

But I wake up occassionally and then realise it was all dream
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Old 04-25-2007, 11:20 PM
  #32  
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Just found this now-old thread.

In the Window's world, "free software" is sometimes shady or has ulterior motives (such as planting a virus on your PC or asking for personal information).

But actual Free Software is about Freedom, not price. Same thing for Open Source software. In the world of Linux, and the BSD's, almost all software is Free, and it is so for idealistic and ethical reasons, not to plant a virus on an unsuspecting victim.

My own Free calculator program, WebOCalc, can be downloaded from my RC Groups website ( http://flbeagle.rchomepage.com ). It is written in Javascript - there is no executable file, so no possibility of a virus. and you are of course welcome to run any antivirus software you want on it. WebOCalc is Free as in Freedom - it's licensed under the GPL (same as Linux), and it's also free as in zero cost to you.

WebOCalc is also very easy to use, as you can see from the screenshot. It manages to give you a pretty decent ballpark estimate without even asking you for all three motor constants, just the Kv which can usually be found easily.

I wrote WebOCalc partly as a learning tool for myself, and mainly in order to give something back to the RC community from which I have learned so much.

-Flieslikeabeagle
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