29mm GPS trackers...

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
Trackers small enough to fit a 29mm air-frame. Do they exist? What is you favorite and why?

thx
 
Last edited:

rocketsam2016

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2016
Messages
270
Reaction score
4
Eggfinder should fit. I enjoyed buidlign it but don't have much experience using it yet
 

GrouchoDuke

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2016
Messages
1,149
Reaction score
577
Eggfinder fits, but not in a coupler - only in a body tube. I'm using a Ready To Fly Quads Micro M8N gps tied to a TBeacon for my 29mm.
 

Rocket86

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2010
Messages
797
Reaction score
50
Eggfinder fits easily in a 29mm tube. I have a tube built into all my nosecones and move it between rockets in seconds.
 

GrouchoDuke

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2016
Messages
1,149
Reaction score
577
Sorry, I didn't mean to exclude nose cones. Do you have any pix you are willing to share?
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
I was aware of the Egg Finder, but since it was a kit I sort of assumed it was not small enough. Gives me even more pause about buying one. To bad they don't sell the thing assembled for an additional charge. In that way you can see it and use it before you spend a bunch of time building it only to have it not work when you're done. :(

Anything else out there?
 

dhbarr

Amateur Professional
Joined
Jan 30, 2016
Messages
7,273
Reaction score
1,705
I was aware of the Egg Finder, but since it was a kit I sort of assumed it was not small enough. Gives me even more pause about buying one. To bad they don't sell the thing assembled for an additional charge. In that way you can see it and use it before you spend a bunch of time building it only to have it not work when you're done. :(

Anything else out there?
Conor builds 'em for a reasonable fee. Check around at your next launch to see egg* in action.
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
Conor builds 'em for a reasonable fee. Check around at your next launch to see egg* in action.
Who is Conor?

And what happens when they fail? Since they are a kit how can they be warrantied?
 

MWC

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2012
Messages
672
Reaction score
33
RTx also fits in a 29mm tube (not coupler) @ 28.5mm width
 

GrouchoDuke

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2016
Messages
1,149
Reaction score
577
GrouchoDuke said:
Eggfinder fits, but not in a coupler - only in a body tube. I'm using a Ready To Fly Quads Micro M8N gps tied to a TBeacon for my 29mm.
Can you post a picture of this setup?
I don't have it assembled right now, but here are some shots of the 3d modelling I did for the 3d printed sled. This isn't the final sled design, but it should get the general idea across. I'm putting this in a 3" long coupler tube. Not shown is where the switch goes. I'm using a Featherweight magnetic switch that's strapped to the battery. The other component on the drawings is an Altus Metrum EasyMini. The battery is a 1S 150mAh LiPo from Adafruit. The main problem I had fitting things in was that I wanted to fit a GPS tracker along with a commercially available altimeter. A lot of the "fits in a coupler tube" components won't fit when they're stacked in there with something else.

I haven't flown the TBeacon on a rocket yet, so I can't vouch for it completely. My first flight with it will be about a motor that'll make the rocket pull about 70g, so that should give it a fairly good first test. You can program the TBeacon to talk on the FRS radio freqs, so (if you pick the right freq) it wouldn't require a ham license. To get better range than an FRS radio, I'm using it on a ham freq with a cheap handheld ham radio. It's not telemetry like the Eggfinder or TeleGPS. The TBeacon listens to a GPS signal and reads the coordinates to you (i.e. a voice transmission) when you send the TBeacon a tone. It'll require a little more thought, pre-planning and real-time execution than any of the telemetry solutions would require. I went with it because I wanted a tracker that gave me GPS coordinates it and I wanted it to fit inside the coupler tube along with the altimeter (the tube has an ID of about 25.5mm).

It was designed to survive r/c aircraft crashes, but I'm not sure how those compare to the 70-100g launches that a 29mm min-diameter rocket can do. There are some YouTube videos on it if you'd like to see it in action. Airborne range should be way plenty, so I was hoping to get coordinates from it while the rocket was under the chute. Those should get me close enough to get updated coordinates from it once it's on the ground.

If the weather cooperates, I plan to fly my 29MD rocket with the TBeacon for the first time next weekend. I'll let you know how it goes.

I know there are some LoRa trackers in development for r/c aircraft and balloons. Those should have huge range and provide telemetry throughout the flight. You could build your own one of those, but I don't think there are any of the shelf ones you can get yet. I looked at coding one up using an Adafruit Feather with the RFM95 ($35!), but it's a little too big to fit in my coupler tube too. I haven't heard of any LoRa trackers targeted for rockets. A tiny Ublox 8, LoRa, altimeter, accelerometer, gyro all-in-one unit would be great to have. ;)

The TBeacon has been talked about here at least one other time. There are pros and cons to it, but after lots of research it looks like it'll work for me. Quite a few of the "no way, I wouldn't use that because..." comments in the other thread don't apply or have been taken care of through the software design of the TBeacon. Whatever you chose, do your research beforehand. If you don't put things in a coupler, it'll give you more room and open up more options.

If you want to do some direction finding/fox hunting, something like a CSI Locator might work great too.


Screen Shot 2017-01-14 at 12.16.46 PM.pngScreen Shot 2017-01-14 at 12.16.26 PM.png
 
Last edited:

cerving

Owner, Eggtimer Rocketry
TRF Sponsor
TRF Supporter
Joined
Feb 3, 2012
Messages
4,363
Reaction score
1,733
An Eggfinder TX easily fits in a 29mm coupler, I have one in the NC of one of my 54mm rockets on a basswood sled with a 180 mAH 2S LiPo. It's closed off with an Estes screw-on motor mount that I plugged. An Eggtimer TRS (the GPS tracker & dual-deploy combo) will not fit in 29mm; it will fit in a BT55 body tube, though.

No license required... it's on the 900 MHz band.
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
RTx also fits in a 29mm tube (not coupler) @ 28.5mm width
That sounds awful tight. Do you have pictures? Pictures would also be nice to help understand what parts and pieces are required at a minimum to have a working system as it looks like there are several options.
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
An Eggfinder TX easily fits in a 29mm coupler, I have one in the NC of one of my 54mm rockets on a basswood sled with a 180 mAH 2S LiPo. It's closed off with an Estes screw-on motor mount that I plugged. An Eggtimer TRS (the GPS tracker & dual-deploy combo) will not fit in 29mm; it will fit in a BT55 body tube, though.

No license required... it's on the 900 MHz band.
Did you read my concerns on purchasing a kit? Your product's features and price are right for me to start using trackers, but I'm going to need some questions answered, are you game?
 

dhbarr

Amateur Professional
Joined
Jan 30, 2016
Messages
7,273
Reaction score
1,705
Did you read my concerns on purchasing a kit? Your product's features and price are right for me to start using trackers, but I'm going to need some questions answered, are you game?
Conor's a person who hangs out here, and with whom many of us have done business.

Chris has been very helpful troubleshooting the Egg kits, and stands by his product though the fault is almost always in assembly.

If you're looking for a CE+UL and 10y bumper-to-bumper w/ undercoat, a kit may not be the right choice.
 

ttabbal

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
1,082
Reaction score
22
I'm actually looking at doing a LoRa tracker designed for rockets, but I doubt I can stuff altimeter gear on it too. Besides, Eggtimer has your back there... :)
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
Conor's a person who hangs out here, and with whom many of us have done business.
Since I don't no how to reach Coner some contact info would be a big help.

Chris has been very helpful troubleshooting the Egg kits, and stands by his product though the fault is almost always in assembly.
That sounds great, but that really does not answer the question. What does he do, send you a whole new kit if it does not work after assembly? Doubt that and I would not expect it.

If you're looking for a CE+UL and 10y bumper-to-bumper w/ undercoat, a kit may not be the right choice.
Not looking for that at all and your comparison in not accurate in any way so please don't make if for me.

BTW.. my question, which you quoted, was clearly directed at cerving. I suspect as a business person marketing his product he does not want you speaking for him any more than I want you speaking for me so please don't.
 
Last edited:

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
An Eggfinder TX easily fits in a 29mm coupler, I have one in the NC of one of my 54mm rockets on a basswood sled with a 180 mAH 2S LiPo. It's closed off with an Estes screw-on motor mount that I plugged. An Eggtimer TRS (the GPS tracker & dual-deploy combo) will not fit in 29mm; it will fit in a BT55 body tube, though.

No license required... it's on the 900 MHz band.
Chris, I would really like to know more about your product despite how dhbarr is attempting to characterize my interest.
 

rocketsam2016

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2016
Messages
270
Reaction score
4
Since I don't no how to reach Coner some contact info would be a big help.



That sounds great, but that really does not answer the question. What does he do, send you a whole new kit if it does not work after assembly? Doubt that.



Not looking for that at all and your comparison in not accurate in any way so please don't make if for me.

BTW.. my question, which you quoted, was clearly directed at cerving. I suspect as a business person marketing his product he does not want you speaking for him any more than I want you speaking for me so please don't.
I can tell you what happens first if it doesn't work: he goes over pictures of your assembly himself. Cris has spent enough time helping me with issues largely of my own doing (soldered parts in the wrong place, and built a leaky av bay) that at one point I literally asked if I could retroactively at least pay him full price for some items I had bought on sale. I have no doubt he would send me a replacement if the parts were bad.

Presumably actual customer experience is a reasonable response to your question...
 

kyle

Space: mostly nothing, partially stars
Joined
Nov 9, 2013
Messages
318
Reaction score
68
Location
Mid-Hudson Valley
Since I don't no how to reach Coner some contact info would be a big help.
Use the new website Google.com and search the phrase "eggtimer assembly" the first return will be Conner's post on this forum advertising his services.
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
I can tell you what happens first if it doesn't work: he goes over pictures of your assembly himself. Cris has spent enough time helping me with issues largely of my own doing (soldered parts in the wrong place, and built a leaky av bay) that at one point I literally asked if I could retroactively at least pay him full price for some items I had bought on sale. I have no doubt he would send me a replacement if the parts were bad.

Presumably actual customer experience is a reasonable response to your question...
Customer testimonials are great thanks! I'd hate to have to impose that way and not be able to reimburse him for it, that's why I'm surprised he won't assemble for a fee.
 

jahall4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,041
Reaction score
55
Use the new website Google.com and search the phrase "eggtimer assembly" the first return will be Conner's post on this forum advertising his services.
That's a reasonable response because it is something specific. Replying: "Conor's a person who hangs out here, and with whom many of us have done business." tells me nothing. I had no idea he advertises his assembly service. thx!

BTW... I'm so old Google is new to me. :wink:

Now I'm finding he as a website https://mctronics.webs.com/ why couldn't dhbarr just been nice guy.
 
Last edited:

GrouchoDuke

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2016
Messages
1,149
Reaction score
577
Customer testimonials are great thanks! I'd hate to have to impose that way and not be able to reimburse him for it, that's why I'm surprised he won't assemble for a fee.
Cris can't do the assembly because of FCC rules. If he did, he'd have to get it stamped by them. It's completely fine to have a 3rd party assemble it though.

FWIW, I bought an Eggfinder too because of what it does, the size it is, and the glowing reports of how well it works and the support from Eggfinder.
 
Last edited:

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
14
I've built a couple of Eggfinder products and really enjoyed building them, I will keep doing it myself.

But if I was gonna pay somebody, those prices are phenomenal.
 

cerving

Owner, Eggtimer Rocketry
TRF Sponsor
TRF Supporter
Joined
Feb 3, 2012
Messages
4,363
Reaction score
1,733
Chris, I would really like to know more about your product despite how dhbarr is attempting to characterize my interest.
I would recommend that you take a look at the product page on our website, eggtimerrocketry.com, and take a look at the assembly and user guides too (under the Support section for the particular product you're looking for, i.e. Eggfinder Support). The FAQ's are helpful too. Similarly, you should do the same with other products that you're considering, so you can educate yourself on their strengths and weaknesses. Yes, this may take some time, but it's really the best way to choose something like this; when I evaluate hardware/software for my day job I usually end up downloading tons of documentation and going through it before I recommend a solution to the guys that write the checks.

In the case of the assembly vs ready-to-fly question, if you're not experienced with electronic assembly of this type I would recommend that you have it built for you. Connor does a decent job, and really doesn't charge that much considering his time. (Except for the LCD case... I think he just doesn't like to do them.) You will still save a significant amount of money vs the other GPS options out there. We sell a number of different products of varying degrees of assembly difficulty. If you want to get your feet wet, you can start with an Eggtimer Classic altimeter, then go to a Quark or Quantum to get some experience with surface mount assembly, then once you're comfortable with that you can try building your own Eggfinder TX kit. When you've really mastered things you can try a TRS. Once you've built a few of these kits, it gets much easier, just like building rockets.
 

rocketsam2016

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2016
Messages
270
Reaction score
4
Customer testimonials are great thanks! I'd hate to have to impose that way and not be able to reimburse him for it, that's why I'm surprised he won't assemble for a fee.
I've tried to make it up by buying more(I'm at 3 quantum's and an eggfinder TX and LCD) and letting other folks know how much I really have enjoyed building and using them in addition to Cris's outstanding support. I hadn't soldered in a decade and my experience was very very limited, but I had a blast and the assembly error was just me being dumb rather than some intrinsic gnarly challenge.
 

kyle

Space: mostly nothing, partially stars
Joined
Nov 9, 2013
Messages
318
Reaction score
68
Location
Mid-Hudson Valley
That's the one! I'm using a Kindle and it's a pain to cut and paste.

I just got my eggtimer trs and LCD back from him, they look great. Haven't had a chance to power them up yet, but I don't doubt that they will work and pair just fine.

Good luck with your search.
 
Top