Toronto Electric Model Aviation Club Forum

Toronto Electric Model Aviation Club (TEMAC) => General Discussion => Topic started by: Oscar on August 09, 2017, 02:22:34 am

Title: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: Oscar on August 09, 2017, 02:22:34 am
Since I lost my quad, I learn it's important to have a tracking device attach to my RC plane.  I bought the MACRO POLO Tracking device.  (Yes, it's suppose for tracking your dog/cat.  But they also have a light version for tracking RC model.  For the past year, it's always been just for 'insurance' purpose.  While flying my HK Tundra today, I forgot to reset the timer.  It hit the LVC and down she goes to the cornfield.  This is the first time using the device in a real situation.  The result is very positive.  I followed the device arrow and percentage and able to find the plane.  There was no damage to the plane at all.  Compare with other solution (battery beeper, 3-in-1 signal loss alarm, Tile locator, Loc8tor), this one cost the most.  I bought it at GreatHobbies.
Title: Re: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: Crazyflyer on August 09, 2017, 07:22:34 am
Nice, it is expensive but at least it has a very long range (2miles)! Much better than Loc8tor (400').
Title: Re: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: vicwhit on August 09, 2017, 11:28:28 am
I do agree that it is technically better than the Loc8tor that I use. But it is also about 3 times the price too.
I bought the Loc8tor about 3 years ago but didn't need to use it the last couple of years. If I had to choose all over again, it would be a tough choice to pay the difference in cost. The Loc8tor does work effectively but knowing the general area of the downed plane is helpful to put you within the range of the tag.
Having rechargeable lithium batteries in the Marco Polo is a real advantage (if you keep them charged). The Loc8tor tags specify Silver Oxide batteries which are not carried by most stores. So batteries will last over 5 years without use so it is wise to remove them from the tags in the off-season. Alkaline batteries are a cheaper reasonable alternative (as per Frank F) if replaced yearly.
Loc8tor is available on eBay, Amazon, and directly from ( The Lite version is currently US$80.93 +  $7.53 shipping.
On reflection, I'll stick with the Loc8tor!
Title: Re: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: octagon on August 09, 2017, 12:06:59 pm
I just bought the locator. It was shipped from England but arrived here in 4 days. I did have to pay about $20 duty on it, so with the conversion it was about $147.00 total. That was ordering it from the Loc8tor site. Has anyone used the Loc8tor  successfully in the corn? I wonder how much range it has in there?
Title: Re: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: Candu on August 09, 2017, 03:43:12 pm
I had to use my loc8tor twice in the corn field this year. Both time successful without too much deviation from the direct path to the target. A video of one of the search and rescue is included in this message,6249.0.html. The published range for the loc8tor is 400' but in the corn field you can expect about 100' the most. However, for the type of flying we do at TEMAC, I personally find it adequate since you would have a pretty good idea the location of the crash already. For my last search and rescue mission, I didn't even turn on my direction finding unit until I was well into the corns. I also purchased my loc8tor from the UK site about 5 years ago at a lower promotional price and the exchange rate was more favourable. I had to use it several times at different locations and conditions and each time successful. I am happy with its performance so far.

Oscar's Marco Polo locator should be superior than the loc8tor.  Based on what I read on the web, it is based on similar technology  as the Loc8tor except that they are operating on different frequencies. Marco Polo uses 900Mhz band where as Loc8tor uses 2.4Ghz band. RF devices using 900 Mhz usually has a better range than another device operating on 2.4Ghz.  Marco Polo's published range is 2 miles as compared to 400' of the Loc8tor.  Marco Polo is more expensive but you get what you pay for, I guess. On the other hand, Marco Polo is physically bigger, heavier, and require more power than the Loc8tor to operate.

Title: Re: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: Frank v B on August 09, 2017, 09:28:32 pm
The only locator I have used with success is Graham's Toby "the foam sniffing rescue dog".  The cost is only one milk bone biscuit per mission. 8)
The locators you guys use are worth more than any of my planes. :D

Great video Oscar.  It's tough being a bloodhound looking for a downed plane.  For those of us who do not have trackers, the main lesson is that if a plane is on the way down, spend the time to mark it on the horizon (tree, pole, etc.).  best if you have a spotter with you as you fly.


Title: Re: My turn to use the flag /w some help
Post by: Palkina on August 14, 2017, 11:59:03 am
The following is a link to the (LoRa) Long Range Lost Model Tracker.

While looking inside his site, I found this interesting presentation "The story behind $50SAT" by Stuart Robinson.