A wild idea I have... - Armed RC helicopter

Guides and discussions about building water blasters and other water warfare devices such as water balloon launchers.
Evangel
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Post by Evangel » Thu Mar 15, 2007 9:32 am

Could something like that be possible? I looked into building an RC helicopter, and when I think about BattleBots and everything, it could actually be possible as far as controls are concerned, especially seeing that we now have guns with electronic pressurizing mechanisms.

I was watching some Naruto and was inspired by Kankuro's puppets. I could easily picture one of my friends using something like that for long-distance combat, and it'd be funny as hell. :D

Then I saw an armed RC robot on FutureWeapons, which really inspired me. It had cameras and stuff so the user could see where it was going from the robot's POV.

I thought maybe if I get a good nest egg, I'd try something like that. My original idea was a ground-based platform, but the thing is that this would probably be used for super-long-distance combat, cuz it's hard to fight and control something like that at the same time. And without the user keeping an eye on it, it would be pretty easy to steal. So I guess airborne is the only way to go.

Note that i don't know anything about RC helicopters (other than the blades can kill so I'd have to try and put a guard on them), so I dunno what kind of payload they would be able to carry, if ANY kind of payload. But it looks like inputing fire controls would be pretty easy.

I dunno if I'm ever gonna actually attempt something like this; all I really wanna know is, could this be plausible? Or what's more important: how much might it cost? >>;




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Post by isoaker » Thu Mar 15, 2007 9:52 am

hehe... fun idea

However, there are three major issues I can foresee with an RC copter with soaker-capabilities apart from getting the thing to work and having a good payload:

i) what if it gets shot at? moving parts, motors, and electronics with water typically don't mix too well. Add on the fact that helicopters require a good deal of co-ordinated mechanics to keep flying properly, if it gets shot at and hit, not too sure whether it'd stay airborne for long. If the copter is kept at a high-enough altitude to keep it safe from ground-fire, chances of having a successful water attack is low

ii) stream power/payload issues; water is heavy. Needing an RC copter to carry a decent payload means it'd have to be able to lift a decent amount of water to be useful. Then, on top of that, there's the problem when firing as a decently powerful stream will probably push the RC copter in the opposite direction, reducing ability to aim and potentially sending the copter into a downward spiral.

iii) in general, flying RC copters over people is not a good idea simply since these things can fail and end up crashing, Add on a heavy water payload and spinning blades and you've got a potentially dangerous scenario if RC control were ever lost.

The idea would be really cool and fun if all the various technical and safety issues could be accounted for and taken care of. However, while a cool idea, I don't think it's easily feasible unless you've got a lot of time, energy, access to all the necessary equipment, and willing fellow experimenters to help out with field testing.

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Post by DX » Thu Mar 15, 2007 9:52 am

No idea is too far-fetched, especially in the modern soaking community. It might be tedious to mod the helicopter to accept a soaker [it would have to be a very light one, and probably a very small one as well] and get it to fire. However, once done, such a thing could be very useful, like a drone in real war that can actually attack. Adding a camera could make it function to spy on an enemy from beyond sight distance, though enemy movement would change in real time. You'd also have to consider that an enemy might be able to shoot the RC helicopter out of the sky, so you'd have to be very good at the controls.

The only annoying thing might be the price. Obviously the best RC units would carry a higher price tag, but would be capable of doing more.

Didn't see iSoaker's post. Safety might be a concern in terms of it crashing, and money if it does crash or get wet beyond repair. Using such a thing would require well-planned execution and care.




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Post by Evangel » Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:02 am

Okay, I thought about that "what if it gets shot at" thing for a while, and best I can do is maybe some armoring. In any case, I really don't want it to be invincible anyway.

I addressed the weight concern already (I dunno what kind of payload they would be able to carry), athough yeah I guess recoil could also be a problem. I dunno... maybe stabilizers of some kind, like Armored Core 4? lol I dunno. xD

I could just make it ground-based, I'd have no problem with that, it's just that it'd be way too easy for someone to steal it, and even easier to damage/destroy it physically by kicking, punching, etc.




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Post by isoaker » Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:07 am

The "being-attacked-problem" remains true for an RC copter, in some ways perhaps even more since if the blades are damaged by some rock being thrown at it, it'll probably have a good distance to fall and crash into the ground.

Drones can be cool, but with present ease of tech access, it's hard to create an optimal one.

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Post by Evangel » Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:19 am

I guess so. Still, something like this could really be useful to us, but the primary concern is still theft and/or physical damage. If I can't reduce or eliminate those concerns, then it won't be feasible no matter what.

Well before I decide to call this idea off, any ideas on what WOULD be feasible in a drone? Only thing I can really think of is something like mass-production: something cheap and easy to build so that if it does get stolen, damaged or destroyed, it can easily be repaired or replaced.




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Post by WaterWolf » Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:36 am

If your helicopter is strong enough to carry ANY kind of payload that would actually be useful, then it would have to be a high-end RC-heli, which means that it would be rather expensive.
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Post by Evangel » Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:50 am

Uhm, you're a little late. Now we're trying to find alternatives. But btw, it's not that I want it to be airborne, more like I feel it'd be to reduce probability of theft, since logically they'd be harder to grab.

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Post by Adrian » Thu Mar 15, 2007 11:52 am

It's an interesting idea. I have no doubt that it can be done. But whether can be done means it should be done is another story. Let me rephrase that, whether it can be done and be useful, efficient, and worth the cost...who knows.

I've tinkered with RC cars in the past, and I'm positive that to get a soaker and trigger mechanism in the air and capable of traveling distances would be fantastically expensive and difficult - not to mention dangerous.

If you've got the funds to do it though, go for it.

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Post by mr. dude » Thu Mar 15, 2007 12:52 pm

If you were to use the heli option, you don't necessarily need to worry about the recoil. Why not drop the water and let gravity do its job? The only recoil I can imagine is the helicopter rising.

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Post by Evangel » Thu Mar 15, 2007 1:06 pm

Hm, that drop-bomber would probably be the most reasonable approach, except the platform would need to be moving at high speed to ensure maximum accuracy and soakage area, otherwise, if you just dump the water straight down, it'd be fairly easy to avoid, especially when they KNOW that the heli can only hit what's directly below them. For that reason, a drop-bomber setup might be more accurate on an RC airplane rather than a helicopter, since they can move faster. Plus I think an airplane platform would be safer since, because faster movement in this case means wider hit area, that means it can operate from a higher altitude.

But the problem is, I think you actually need a license to fly those... Also, if this is gonna be airborne at all, it would be helpful for it to be able to take-off vertically, since chances are there's not gonna be anything usable as a runway.




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Post by soakerman » Thu Mar 15, 2007 1:25 pm

You could attach water ballons to the underside, sort of like a WWI style bomber.

It could work, and would allow you to fly higher, therefore avoiding the threat of being shot at (by a water gun anyway)

The only problem would be predicting where they would fall and releasing them in time...

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Post by Evangel » Thu Mar 15, 2007 1:34 pm

soakerman wrote:You could attach water ballons to the underside, sort of like a WWI style bomber.

It could work, and would allow you to fly higher, therefore avoiding the threat of being shot at (by a water gun anyway)

The only problem would be predicting where they would fall and releasing them in time...

:soakon2:

Yeah, it could work, as long as the thing can support the weight. But there's still the problem of landing and take-off (assuming we're still taking about an airplane model).

Hey you know those helicopters that dump gallons of water onto fires? Maybe I could do something like that. That would also provide a wider coverage area than single water balloons. But it would still have to be pretty high-end to carry enough of a payload to be even remotely feasible in a combat situation.

I still think we should at least try to think of some alternative to airborne types.




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Post by Dr. D » Thu Mar 15, 2007 8:11 pm

Adian's right, just watch junkyard wars. I guarantee that if you even just take apart a good RC car and used the parts, you could moderately easily make a short, 2-ft drone that could support even a smaller-end CPS. I'm no engineer or anything, but I'm sure that you could find a way to make it work. Personally, if you have one (or can find one, they're moderately easy to get on eBay), I'd use a Splashzooka. No need to pump, adequate range, adequate power, moderately light, sensical shape. Plus, it'd be nearly effortless to recharge. Although a lot of people don't like QFD only guns, it'd be absolutely perfect for something like this. And if you couldn't get a splashzooka to work, i'd use a lower end QFD (like an SC 500-600).

But that's just me, I'm no kind of expert on things such as these. Good luck, though!
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Post by SilentGuy » Thu Mar 15, 2007 8:32 pm

It's probably worth it to mention a homemade gun at this point. You could connect a pump to the drivetrain or something...or build a very powerful gun...or a water balloon launcher...etc. The flexibility should be evident.

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Post by Evangel » Fri Mar 16, 2007 12:36 am

Yeah that could work too. But once again it kinda comes down to what kind of platform to put it on.



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Post by Leviathan » Mon Mar 26, 2007 10:12 pm

Evangel wrote:Hm, that drop-bomber would probably be the most reasonable approach, except the platform would need to be moving at high speed to ensure maximum accuracy and soakage area, otherwise, if you just dump the water straight down, it'd be fairly easy to avoid, especially when they KNOW that the heli can only hit what's directly below them. For that reason, a drop-bomber setup might be more accurate on an RC airplane rather than a helicopter, since they can move faster. Plus I think an airplane platform would be safer since, because faster movement in this case means wider hit area, that means it can operate from a higher altitude.

But the problem is, I think you actually need a license to fly those... Also, if this is gonna be airborne at all, it would be helpful for it to be able to take-off vertically, since chances are there's not gonna be anything usable as a runway.

No license required, and a lot of planes can be hand-launched. I actually rigged a cessna to drop a water balloon: it didn't fly as fast, but it worked. Never got to use it in combat though: little brother flew it into a tree. So yeah, I'd say the best platform would be a plane, maybe with a reservoir on top with a capped hose running underneath? You hit the button, the cap moves, instant shower. If you miss, you release the button, save the water left, and come around again.
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Post by mutuhaha » Tue Mar 27, 2007 6:32 am

Just to put in a mention for logistical application of RC planes/helis, gliders. Unfilled water balloons are generally quite light, even in large quantities. In hilly, multi-storey urban and difficult terrain battlefields, airborne delivery solutions could reduce time running about grabbing stuff. Such supply craft need not bear a lot of weight and can be made to be disposable, for example gliders, which can be loaded, thrown, intercepted and packed up.
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Post by 10rleave » Sat Mar 31, 2007 11:26 am

I think that this is a wild idea but you probably won't be able to do it with just the steriotypical RC helis you see in stores. You need something a little more... adventurous. I haven't ever used any of the following RC vehicles, but you might want to do some research on them and sheck their payloads.

You can get a new type of RC copter - it's a "UFO" type. It has 4 large rotors instead of the usual one. I've heard it's pretty easy to manouvre (am I spelling that right?) which is probably vital for air to ground soaking. Plus, all those extra rotors can't be a bad thing. The UFO is flat like a plate, so if you had the cash you could buy two and put them on top of each other... possibly. Remember the RC world can get seriously pricey.

Another thing I've spotted on the market is the RC blimp. You fill it with helium and it floats. Some fans on the bottom can guide it around. Again, I've never used one or seen it in action so I'm completely stumped as to how much it might be able carry. You might be able to mod the balloon and make it bigger so it can float more.

It's obvious that water and electricals don't mix at all, but you can buy petrol powered planes and things which possibly don't use the same level of electricity. If you're going to be using a RC soaker I would give your friends and enemies a warning before using it in battle - don't kick it, poke it, hit it, chuck things at it. There are a few noobs around and all it takes is a noob and a rock for your super-cool RC soaker to suffer death by stoning.

All in all, I think that it would be a lot easier to mod an RC car/jeep. Companies have designed these a lot better than airborne vehicles, so they should be able to carry a soaker comfortably and easily. I have no idea what you would do to pull the trigger though.

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Post by used man » Sun Apr 01, 2007 12:05 pm

you should make it a turret and somehow fix it to the ground
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