Test flight of prototype location beeper. Yes, it beeps "S-O-S" in Morse Code.

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cvanc

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Because hey, why not?

I think there's a lot of room for improvement with sonic locators. I think these have fallen out of favor a bit with the advent in recent years of RF and GPS locators. But I bet we all know of times when the fancy tracker said "it's right here" and you were thirty feet away from the darn thing and you still couldn't find it.

I have some older beepers that are a super loud continuous tone, and it's amazing how difficult it is to actually hear out in the field. A continuous tone is hard to discern out there. And the old Radio Shack warble alarms blend in with nature sounds (cicadas especially) so it's hard to be sure you're hearing them, too. I wanted something that made a CLEARLY artificial sound - a manmade pattern - and it suddenly struck me "what about Morse Code?" Once I headed in that direction using S-O-S was obvious. I mean what other message should it send??

Flew the prototype yesterday at Bong. I left the Walston out, I wanted an acid test of recovery by beeper alone. I could easily hear it a couple hundred yards away on the ground. I walked right to it, aided by sound alone. Attached is a link to the video taken as I walked up to the rocket. (Can't post it directly as it's over 20 megs.)

I am toying with the idea of making a production run of these. Any interest?

https://photos.app.goo.gl/XzN7sP0ZG8GYOb2v2
 
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Buckeye

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Sounds interesting, but details needed, please. Size?, mass?, batteries?, battery life?, switch?, attachment?
 

ksaves2

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That's a nice variation on a sonic tracker. The super loud ones, 140dB are rather prominent out in the field but they can't be carried in smaller projects.
Larger rockets are essentially easier to find. I was frustrated one time in that I thought I had come right upon an EggFinder tracked rocket. Not there and
the receiver was beeping merrily away. Well, that would be stupid to lose a rocket with a live GPS tracker going! It finally occurred to Stupidhead here to
zoom in on the map and I walked right up to it then! Rocket might have been able to carry a beeper but it would have been tight with the JLCR.

What's the size of your SOS beeper? (See I didn't do a setup for "off color" comments here!) Kurt
 

fyrwrxz

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I'm in. Since we lost Plaster, the place we fly in now has a penalty for landing outside the 'box' Not woodlands like you have back east, but nasty, shaggy little lumps of God's rejection pile for vegetation. The only thing that saved my modified WildChild was an old Adept beeper with a questionable battery in it tied to the cord at the last minute. Absolutely no room for GPS and barely enuff for a streamer and screamer. Maybe if I flew smaller motors, but....no.
 

ksaves2

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I'm in. Since we lost Plaster, the place we fly in now has a penalty for landing outside the 'box' Not woodlands like you have back east, but nasty, shaggy little lumps of God's rejection pile for vegetation. The only thing that saved my modified WildChild was an old Adept beeper with a questionable battery in it tied to the cord at the last minute. Absolutely no room for GPS and barely enuff for a streamer and screamer. Maybe if I flew smaller motors, but....no.
Yeah, I took a Quest Zenith II: https://www.erockets.biz/quest-flying-model-rocket-kit-zenith-ii-3005/, made a booster for a D motor, made an E9-0 out of an E9-P (this was a long time ago and I flew it by myself in the middle of no where) put a home made beeper with an A23 12V battery, piezo and flashing LED on the harness and let'r rip. Rocket disappears while I could still hear the booster burning. Then heard it stage and now we wait. I'm looking to the south where I expected it by the way the rocket went off the rod and I thought it was bye-bye. Was going to launch another rocket and then I hear the rattle of the metallized mylar streamer and swing my eyes to the north. Now I catch the flashing of the silver streamer and it ultimately lands inside a standing corn field. Well it didn't seem to go inside it very far. I went a little too far to the east and worked my way back west and the beeper did its job. Once I made it to the field, it was all but 3 minutes it took to find. Ears can be great rocket locators.
Oh, I still have the rocket. Have flown it several times. Booster got beat up and built another one of those.

Oh BTW besides S.O.S. how about Ham callsign, name and email address too! :lol: Just kidding but I do have a 50mW RDF tracker I got from this fellow some years ago: https://www.west.net/~marvin/microhnt.htm.
Programmed callsign, "rocket tracker" and email address in morse. Kurt
 

markkoelsch

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Yes, I am interested.


Sent from my iPhone using Rocketry Forum
 

qquake2k

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I might be interested, depending on size, cost, and durability.
 

Swissyhawk

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Is it a simple on/off style or does it trigger on something - like altitude?
 

crossfire

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Because hey, why not?

I think there's a lot of room for improvement with sonic locators. I think these have fallen out of favor a bit with the advent in recent years of RF and GPS locators. But I bet we all know of times when the fancy tracker said "it's right here" and you were thirty feet away from the darn thing and you still couldn't find it.

I have some older beepers that are a super loud continuous tone, and it's amazing how difficult it is to actually hear out in the field. A continuous tone is hard to discern out there. And the old Radio Shack warble alarms blend in with nature sounds (cicadas especially) so it's hard to be sure you're hearing them, too. I wanted something that made a CLEARLY artificial sound - a manmade pattern - and it suddenly struck me "what about Morse Code?" Once I headed in that direction using S-O-S was obvious. I mean what other message should it send??

Flew the prototype yesterday at Bong. I left the Walston out, I wanted an acid test of recovery by beeper alone. I could easily hear it a couple hundred yards away on the ground. I walked right to it, aided by sound alone. Attached is a link to the video taken as I walked up to the rocket. (Can't post it directly as it's over 20 megs.)

I am toying with the idea of making a production run of these. Any interest?

https://photos.app.goo.gl/XzN7sP0ZG8GYOb2v2
Carl seems like a great idea. With my hearing problem I have I am almost deaf to the tones of most altimeter high tone. Is there another tone that can be used?
 

cerving

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Go for it. There's definitely a place for beepers, especially on LPR/MPR in grassy fields.
 

BEC

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That actually is a great idea - again somewhat dependent on size, weight and cost, probably in that order.
 

RocketDestroyer

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Like the others I might be interested depending upon size and cost.

A minor nit pick. The inter element spacing between the dashes is too long so it sounds more like S T T T S than SOS.

Terry
 

Steve Shannon

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Carl seems like a great idea. With my hearing problem I have I am almost deaf to the tones of most altimeter high tone. Is there another tone that can be used?
I would recommend an alert signal that steps quickly through ascending or descending tones rather that repeatedly sending the same tone.
 
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