Let's Make Robots!

Sky observer V3

Observes the sky with a video camera, transmits a ring tone to all walkie-talkies in a range of 2km, beeps to find it again

****Update 2011/8/18****

Video from a successful flight is up. The HD BoosterVision camera is awesome. Telemetry worked perfect. Recovery took me and my father in law two hours.


I am building version 3 of my sky observer rocket. I am using a modified Quest Quad Runner Model Rocket Kit. A BoosterVision GearCam HD-DVR will make the video during flight. A modified walkie-talkie on board will be used to locate the rocket after landing. Additional the electronic payload emits a warble sound that could help me to get my rocket back. Here are some pictures of the progress on building the rocket:


Fins, motor mount tubes and thrust rings prepared


Assembled motor mount with shock cord


No payload is designated at the original kit. The nose cone must be modified and an electronic bay need to be build


This walkie-talkie pair will be used for the rocket beacon


Common problem for most walkie-talkies is that they do not transmit continuous. They switch off after a certain time of transmission. Therefore the transmission time has to be modulated. Image shows the walkie-talkie PCB and piggy backed oscillator circuit

Body tube with mounted fins. Two component putty has been used for the fin fillet


Finished electronic bay


Paint job


Completely assambled rocket


Data of the rocket and estimated flight plot

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I love it, Markus!!!

All the safety guards in my living area (which is quite big as you can see in the video) have gotten 2 hours serial data on channel 1 of their walkie-talkies :P

Sorry for that, guys.

Well done Markus. I my time as a model plane pilot we put beepers in the model planes in case they crash in the wild. The beeper was activated by switching off the remote control.

2 hours serial data...well, they probably did not have any clue what happend ;-)

Hi Lumi,

I see you are back. Do you know a good rocket testing field in Shanghai? I have discovered a lot of new propellants:) I am just developing a new one, using coffee whitener as fuel.

Haha, coffee whitener as fuel...incredible.

I do not know any testing field here but will keep my eyes open. (about the house warming party, next week I will let you know)

This is a Rocket Video and a half......... Congratulations "Mission Control".

...... just missed the tennis courts and river and i think i saw some high voltage pyhlons too - video shows the rocket off well.

If you wanted to be able to find a model that could get away from you, why not give it some neon/fluorescent colors rather than the blue? Don't get me wrong, your rocket looks great. I was just wondering.

I was wondering do you launch your rockets into the wind to attempt to keep them near the launch area when they land?

Hi Birdman,

You can not track the rocket with naked eye in the sky even it is neon colored. You only see a smoke trail. After the parachute has deployeed it is much better to track the rocket. Therefore the parachute is orange. Any rocket should not be launched on a windy day.

Doh I came up with the walkie talkie idea the same time Markus was implementing it! Well that means I have a good chance of being able to utilize it! 4 Rocket motors? Looks like it'll have quite alot of thrust.