LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

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Brandon DeKock
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LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby Brandon DeKock » Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:25 pm

So a friend introduced me to LK8000 a little while ago. It it open-source (read *free*) software that will run on a large variety of Personal Nav Aids (PNA's) AKA, the little GPS thingies stuck to everybody's dashboards. These can be purchased used for about $45 on ebay or amazon. Then loading the software is free and takes 10 minutes. Learning to use it effectively takes longer, but that should be taken bit-by-bit anyway.

LK8000 will display topography, terrain, some roads, waypoints, LZ/s, airspace, routes and competition routes, what is within your glide range, your track (in colors so you know where you were rising or sinking), and probably some stuff I'm forgetting about. It'll also show in side-view (and above view at the same time) airspace and topography, along with your glide angle, so you can know if you're clearing the airspace and the terrain. It'll audibly warn you (in a very customizable way) when you'er approaching controlled airspace.

After your flight, in the LZ with beer in hand, you can replay your flight on this same device (at whatever speed multiplier you choose) and show your buddies how high you got and how ripping that thermal was. I haven't verified this, but I'm pretty certain you can show where you were relative to the terrain and airspace using the horizontal / overhead views.

I'm posting because I don't want pilots to accidentally break airspace, or accidentally think they have something on glide when they don't. The technology now costs less than a tank of gas.

Check it out:
http://www.lk8000.it/
http://www.lk8000.it/hardware.html
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfP2sM0cWt8
And you can find much more on it than what I linked here.
The discussion board for developers and users is here: http://www.postfrontal.com/forum/default.asp?CAT_ID=11 of course, please observe good forum etiquette if you think you need to post here.

One of the recommended pieces of hardware is the MIO M400, and that is what I have. It is super easy to mount this to a flytec bracket arm for HG pilots. However, it is not necessary to buy hardware to test out this flight instrument. LK8000 can run in simulator mode on your windows computer. I think you can have it replay a flight from an igc file from a previous flight (I'm not certain of this) so you can see how that flight would have looked on this instrument.

Anyway, have fun, but please keep your attention "outside the cockpit"

Brandon
Wing on top, Pilot on bottom, Pointy end forward.
WW U2 160

Sam Crater
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby Sam Crater » Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:13 pm

Thanks Brandon! That is pretty cool.

elyjs
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby elyjs » Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:07 am

Sweet, just won my Mio M400 ebay auction for $31! Lets hope I can get this thing working.

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Mike Jobin
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby Mike Jobin » Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:40 pm

I have been looking at this for a while also... Lk8000 is supposed to be the best flight software out there right now, and its free! I went a different direction than the car gps. I bought a small 7" tablet (android) anticipating the release of lk8000 for android this winter. Even though it is not available for the device, it is just a matter of waiting. I wanted a bigger screen and something with more options alternatively from flight computer. There is other flying software out there as well:
xcsoar
http://forum.xcsoar.org/index.php

This software is very similar (but not quite as good I hear) and is available for a variety of formats. The tablet I bought (samsung galaxy tab 2 7.0) was $200. It does fit in my flight deck! Now the issue is how well it works in sunlight. This is a much more appealing option to the $700 or $800 flight computer and has an infinite amount of more options and very long battery life.

Anyway, here is a video about how the software works (sorry it is in spanish):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfP2sM0cWt8&feature=player_embedded

It shows the basic idea, I will share my experiences when I get a chance to try it out

elyjs
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby elyjs » Thu Nov 01, 2012 11:09 pm

The Mio M400 is ridiculously pimp. For 31 dollars I have an instrument that does everything my b1 nav will do but also airspace, topo/terrain etc. This with an audio only vario would be superior to other market offerings. The screen is twice as bright and daylight readable, its light and small, and best of all super cheap!

Image

rickwyo
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby rickwyo » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:34 pm

What about battery life?

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DonS
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby DonS » Sat Apr 06, 2013 12:30 pm

Gadgets, can't get enough of them and Flight Computers are the best. I Like the route Mike was trying.

by Mike Jobin » Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:40 pm
It shows the basic idea, I will share my experiences when I get a chance to try it out

Any news Mike?
dons

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Mike Jobin
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby Mike Jobin » Sun Apr 14, 2013 1:49 pm

Hi Don,

Thanks for asking about the tablet flight computer. So far, LK8000 has not been made for android, only for windows mobile format. I have been using xcsoar on the tablet which is basically the same. It is free software and has lots of features (most of which I have not tried). If i were rating the software, I would give a high rating on function. If I rate the device and it's application for our sport, I would have to say it is not ideal. The reasons I have for this device being disappointing are that the screen is too hard to see. Sun glare on the screen is too much to see what is happening. This could be solved with some kind of shade over the tablet, but I haven't tried to make something like this yet. The other issue is that the size of the tablet is too big for anything else on my flight deck.

I suppose for a hang glider the device would be tricky to mount. If you managed to mount it in a vertical orientation, there would be no sun glare. On the paraglider flight deck in a horizontal orientation, the glare makes the device pointless. Also, since the touch screen doesn't work with gloves, you need a stylus to operate through menus, etc. (this is annoying and distracting)

I found this device distracting and a bit annoying because it did not provide more information for me but rather it took my attention away from flying and situational awareness. I suppose the information would be better when up high and not around other gliders. I was hoping for an "all in one" device, but it is missing a vario which means you still need your old trusty beeping device next to it.

Maybe someone could comment on the gps devices running lk8000 and how they work with sun glare, etc?

Hawk
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Re: LK8000 Touch-screen Color Flight Computer for $40

Postby Hawk » Tue Jun 04, 2013 8:34 am

I use LK8000 on a mio moov in the gliders out fo boulder,

there is a hell of a lot it can do, and I barely know how to use it. Mine dies after about 2 hours.

One really neat feature is it has all the airports on it, and a bunch of sailplane polars. And as you are flying around will beep and you look down and it will say something like "best alternative airport "Vance Brand"" and then give you a heading to that airport.


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