Featherweight or Missileworks T3?

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Buckeye

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However, if I absolutely, positively need to find the rocket, I still revert to my trusty BRB900. In these scenarios, I don't trust Bluetooth connections and don't give a damn about maps or arrows to point me. I'll worry about that later. I just reliably need the latitude and longitude coordinates and the BRB900 delivers that with its dedicated receiver unit.
Do you put those coordinates into a Garmin unit, or just use your smart phone? I'm not familiar with the BRB900, but I did go out to the website to look at the setup.
[/QUOTE]

Yes, both. Any navigation device or app will work. I have an inexpensive Garmin Etrex, but I also use GPS Essentials on my phone. Punch in the lat/lon reported by the tracker receiver as a waypoint, and off you go.
 

QFactor

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Do you put those coordinates into a Garmin unit, or just use your smart phone? I'm not familiar with the BRB900, but I did go out to the website to look at the setup.
Yes, both. Any navigation device or app will work. I have an inexpensive Garmin Etrex, but I also use GPS Essentials on my phone. Punch in the lat/lon reported by the tracker receiver as a waypoint, and off you go.
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I use the T3 in my rockets. I'll note the last position from the phone app. But I keep a Garmin 64st on hand. So far all my launches (but one) over 4,000 and 5,000 ft. we got a visual on just before the chute opened.
 

Buckeye

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Yes, both. Any navigation device or app will work. I have an inexpensive Garmin Etrex, but I also use GPS Essentials on my phone. Punch in the lat/lon reported by the tracker receiver as a waypoint, and off you go.
I use the T3 in my rockets. I'll note the last position from the phone app. But I keep a Garmin 64st on hand. So far all my launches (but one) over 4,000 and 5,000 ft. we got a visual on just before the chute opened.
[/QUOTE]

Indeed. I carry a small notebook and always write down the last lat/lon coordinates, just in case the electronics go blank. The Featherweight reports in degrees.decimaldegrees which is a little annoying. degrees minutes.decimalminutes is more common.
 

Handeman

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I guess I'm really old school. I use a T3 as my #1 tracking choice, but if I absolutely have to find the rocket, I also put a RDF transmitter in it. No need to depend on data packets, cell signals, satellite tracks, NMEA string data packets, or any other complicated high tech device, just a single transmitted RF pulse from the rocket. KISS
 

Philip Tiberius D.

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I guess I'm really old school. I use a T3 as my #1 tracking choice, but if I absolutely have to find the rocket, I also put a RDF transmitter in it. No need to depend on data packets, cell signals, satellite tracks, NMEA string data packets, or any other complicated high tech device, just a single transmitted RF pulse from the rocket. KISS
Which RDF ? I like the idea if KISS... 💋
 

QFactor

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I guess I'm really old school. I use a T3 as my #1 tracking choice, but if I absolutely have to find the rocket, I also put a RDF transmitter in it. No need to depend on data packets, cell signals, satellite tracks, NMEA string data packets, or any other complicated high tech device, just a single transmitted RF pulse from the rocket. KISS
What do you use to receive the RF pulse ?
 

QFactor

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We have a Walston tracking system. We can still buy transmitters for our older receiver.

That is now LL Electronics. The LF-3 2G or LFX 3v transmitters with the MN-10 receiver would work
Thanks for that info. Amazing, they got their start with Falconers - tracking their falcons. Bit of an investment for the receiver, but I guess if you loose one high-power rocket you lost way more money in motor case, chute, harnesses, build time, etc.
 

Handeman

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Thanks for that info. Amazing, they got their start with Falconers - tracking their falcons. Bit of an investment for the receiver, but I guess if you loose one high-power rocket you lost way more money in motor case, chute, harnesses, build time, etc.
I actually had to find the info because it is club gear and I "lost" a transmitter and had to replace it.
I did a lot of RDF tracking and think I got pretty good at it. If you attach the transmitter to the drogue shock cord, you can actually tell when you have apogee deployment by the signal strength change when the transmitter comes out of the BT.
I found several rockets I might have lost without it.
 

manixFan

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I have tracked lots of rockets with an RDF system, including for many years at BALLS. Once I got a Featherweight system I haven't used an RDF since. The amount of time I save recovering rockets allows me to make several more flights at a launch than I did when I was out using an RDF to try and track down a rocket. Heck, with a GPS system I've been able to give the coordinates to someone that was already headed out to recover a rocket that was near mine and have them pick it up for me.

I now have several GPS now trackers and sometimes do a 'bulk recovery'. I'll put up a flight, track it to landing, then fly again. I'll then go out and recover them all at once. More flying, less time recovering.


Tony
 

Zeke Johnson

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>------>

The BigRedBee RDF Beacons are small, affordable, and work.

RDF is a great backup to any GPS system.

70cm Beacon = $59.00
Baofeng UV-5R = $25.00

Is all you need to get started.

A directional antenna and an attenuator makes fox hunting much easier.

Big Red Bee

Arrow Antenna

Attenuator

I believe that if the Featherweight GPS did not require an Apple device, it would gain popularity.

Zeke
 

Arsenal78

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Already bought a Featherweight a few months ago. I think they’re trying to work on an Android app.
 

Zeke Johnson

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Do they have any non-HAM options?

~A
The Technician Class License is very easy to pass. The RF Beacons are available in 70cm and 2m.

The BeeLine Transmitter Beacons are awesome.

There is a GPS package that operates in the non-licensed 900Mhz band.

900Mhz TX and RX GPS

But I do not see the advantage compared to other 900Mhz packages available.

Zeke
 

Dan Griffing

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Unless I’m missing something, the Featherweight has a dedicated iOS app (iPhone), while the T3 uses a generic mapping app on an Android device. That may play into a decision into which one to choose.


Tony
What I find amazing about the Featherweight tracking system is the functional enhancement from integrating it with an iPhone app. This app appears to use the iPhone’s highly developed buit-in GPS and accelerometer to give an instantaneous response to its directional ability to point to where your rocket is located.

Instead of attempting to duplicate these features on a dedicated receiver for the niche rocketry market, Featherweight has piggy-backed off of the millions of dollars Apple spent in developing these for its millions of customers. Truly a smart business move by Featherweight. And the voice reporting of the telemetry is pretty cool too. All for a quarter of what a Multitronix “Kate” costs.
 

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