Vario- and altimeter is a must if you do free-flying, even when paramotoring it’s nice to have one. These devices are not cheap so I decided to build one by following this tutorial. I’ve seen people doing contraptions like this, my device has to meet the following requirements:
- device should be ruggedized to withstand vibration, dirt, oil
- attachment to reserve front container should be done by velcro
- headphone connection jack
- long battery life would be nice, but not critical - I do rather short flights.
Apart from combining XCSoar, Kobo Mini and Blue Fly Vario, I designed in FreeCad custom 3D-printed case for the module so everything sits together nice and tight. The project repository is on GitHub. The case has holes, so Blue Fly’s speaker is clearly audible even when wearing noise-muffling headset. Despite this, I added mini jack socket for connecting vario speaker to the headset. Speaker’s volume is adjustable by Blue Fly’s commands. To the back of the Kobo I glued stripes of velcro tape, so I can easily attach it to the reserve compartment as shown in the photo.
The module’s pressure sensor is secured with a piece of foam as described in the manual. The case has holes for the speaker; they are covered with a piece of dark cloth. There is also a piece of rope attached to the case which prevents the device from flying away in an unlikely scenario of velcro failure.
The case is attached to Kobo by two M3 (3 mm) screws with nuts. First you have to put the case on the Kobo and mark the holes’ positions. The holes are positioned in such way that they don’t collide with electronics but be careful when drilling.