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Advanced PCM Range Testing

03/24/2001 by Eric Meyers

Copyright:© 2001 Horizon Hobby, Inc.

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In this article...

Page 1: PCM Range Testing
Page 3: Why PCM
Page 6: Variables

Many, if not most, intermediate-to-advanced modellers have developed some system for checking their battery condition. And rightly so. Batteries, from what I can tell from my 30 years of flying, are still the number one reason guys experience catastrophic failures.

In solving the battery dilemma, most fellows know a numeric value of their battery capacity through use of a cycler. For example, if I ask a guy what his battery is, often times he'll say "I have a JR Extra 1800, and it checked out at 1790 last time I cycled."

Perfect. He's taken the time to get a handle on exactly what his equipment is doing - a great way to save having to re-build a model. Then, if checked before every flight with a battery tester, the chances of having a problem are virtually nil.

Oddly enough, if I ask the same guy how his range checked out, he'll say "okay - fine - pretty good" ... all
qualitative answers. The reason why is clear- there exists no standard system for how to quantify range.
This article is an effort to develop such a system. While most of the concepts are directly applicable to FM, we're going to utilize the "Fail-Safe" system that's exclusive to PCM users to help establish a criteria for measurement.


"Range testing is every bit as vital as battery conditioning/cycling.
This article gives you a system to follow to treat range testing
in the way you treat your batteries."