Initial Set up: Servo Output for Traditional Helicopters

I’m trying to set up a traditional helicopter and have tired to set up the servo output. See pictures attached. It seems to me I’ve messed things up but I can’t find any information on setting this up.

When I do make a change I get the following dialogue box:

Any advice on setting this up would be greatly appreciated.

I have never used this page. I would auggest you use the full parameter list under the config/tuning section. The parameters are SERVOX_FUNCTION.
And if your Motor is connected to channel 8 then

Bill, amazingly, this is the same thing that happened to Guy, I think. What does that Heli Setup do? Do we have a problem with Mission Planner here leading people to using the GUI and making unwanted settings?

I don’t think it is heli setup that caused this. I think it is a new page that was added due to the Servo output functions being separate from RC inputs. I don’t think new users realize that the defaults should be accepted or maybe the page applies the wrong defaults. I will have look at this at home. I never use the setup pages so I miss a lot of this stuff.

Yes, unfortunately I think the setup wiki is sadly out of date too. I will take a look at that when I get time and see what needs to be done there. I think it even uses illustrations yet from the old APM boards.

If it needs updating I may be able to take some new photos etc., and redo it when I go thru the steps to set up my 806 gasser.

Some of the pictures were put together by me in the very early days of the APM coming out - some of the links are now broken. I am happy to contribute to updating the WIKI but I’m not sure how to do it given the many changes since I last look at editing. Happy to help in any way I can as I set up a Hirobo SDX Nitro with Futaba CGY750.

Cool! When we get to that point we’ll get together and see if we can update that :grinning:

Chris I’m finding the whole thing very frustrating. I’ve managed to destroy 2 Pixhawk’s this week. Can’t get them to start-up succesfully and don’t begin to know what happened. I don’t have any more hardware to play with so I’m limited to reading and thinking so I’ll start doing a rewrite of the Traditional Helicopter WIKI including setting up both electic and gas/nitro helis with both autopilot and FBL controllers.

By the way, if you can help sort out my Pixhawk start-up issues, that would be great.

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It looks like you didn’t get the firmware loaded in it. And be aware the FBL unit is powered from the S.BUS out, and that does not have power unless you have the servo rail powered. The only unit that is powered off the servo rail from the Pixhawk’s power is the RC radio.

I would also suggest getting rid of that confounded safety button. We don’t use them with heli’s. They are problematic. Just disable it in the params when you do your setup. That so-called “safety button” was designed for multi’s to prevent people from accidentally starting up their props by arming. Heli doesn’t have that problem.

I use the safety switch on both helis and fixed wing. I find it a handy safety feature. I’ll treat the aircraft as ‘live’ the moment it’s turned on.

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You can use it, obviously. But I don’t like it. Especially for piston powered heli’s. Have to disable the DISARM_DELAY and the safety button to idle the engine. Otherwise it kicks out and the engine quits during warmup.

I thought there was an override for the throttle on piston aircrafts? Or am I making things up (Never used one)

Yeah. You have to arm it to get the idle function to work to start the engine. And it has no choke function for gas engines. For Zenoah RC format engines, the “choke” is a throttle position between idle cutoff and idle speed. You prime the engine and start it on “choke” and let it idle for 30 seconds, then bump it up to normal idle speed. Otherwise it goes lean and quits. All ArduPilot has is the idle speed. Fine for warm weather. A real pain in cold weather.

Chris, I’m still having problems getting my Pixhawks to start properly. I’ve uploaded some new info on the link above. Mate, any help on this one would be much appreciated because can’t go anywhere until I get at least one working.