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Rich

Braincube-Aero.com

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Just reading through this months BMFA NEws and saw this advert for braincube-aero.com and though "ohh, lights, we love lights"

Checked out their website and have to say, am a bit amazed they would spend money on an advert for a website with only 1 product, and a VERY expensive one at that!

 

Model lighting set, with lighting controller, is £48!

 

Checked out their contact us page and it claims they prefer email contact, and are very busy.... Thats odd, 1 product, more than twice the cost of all other model lighting systems, and yet they are very busy...

I happen to be very knowledgable with online business, and can tell you know, that basically means "We have day-jobs and prefer it if you didnt phone us" as we can reply to emails via our phones/blackberry...

 

Thats not a guess either, as any company would welcome enquiries by telephone, unless they were unable to take calls due to having a full time job.

 

Not saying thats a bad thing, just wish people would be honest about it. If they openly said, "We may not always be able to answer the phone due to work commitments" and made it clear this is not their full time job, people actually respect that honesty far more...

 

2 years their website has been online, and only the 1 product??? Very unusual... They say they will be launching some sort of in-flight combat system??? Would love to see that

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Hi there. Noticed this post in some google results, and couldn't resist replying ;-)

 

My name's Oliver Malham, and I run BrainCube Aeromodels. I'm glad the BMFA ad worked and you visited my website! I'm painfully aware that I only have the one main product currently for sale, but please bear in mind that I am manufacturing all my products, I'm not a reseller or model shop, and it takes a surprising amount of time, effort and money to go from an idea to a product ready for consumers. I'm working flat out to develop a wider product range whilst also producing enough stock to meet demand. I've been working on the business for two years, but there was a 6 month break when I had to go and do some contracting to raise more finance, and it took me a fair bit of experimenting and planning to figure out the best way to get the business going with tiny resources. I do have a plan, and the lighting systens are merely a first step - have to start somewhere afterall!

 

The FlightLights set is expensive when you compare it to the £20 sets you get in model shops, but that is not a fair comparison. FlightLights is designed for larger models, flying outside, in daylight. A £20 set will not be visible in those conditions, the FlightLights set is visible for hundreds of feet on a summers day. FlightLights has a very high power controller wirh multiple flash patterns and draws power from a separate battery for safety. The light modules use cutting edge power LEDs that can run at over 1W - equivalent to a 15W halogen bulb, far superior to the 5mm LEDs you get in a £20 set.

 

BrainCube Aeromodels is not a part time thing, the business IS my day (and night, and weekend) job. I'm happy to talk to customers on the phone, and have chatted with a lot of modellers about how to get the best scale lighting effect for their current project. I prefer email because I spend a lot of time in the workshop soldering, machining and moulding, and I also find I can give a better, more reasoned and accurate response to a query if I have time to think about it and write it down - I guess that's my software engineering background coming through!

 

The combat system is in the pipeline, but it takes a huge amount to testing to make sure it works and is a top quality product. I'm aiming (no pun intended) for a 2011 Q2 release date. In the meantime, why don't you try a set of my lights. If you're not blown away by how bright they are, send them back and I'll give you a full refund ;-)

 

Cheers,

 

Oliver

 

Just reading through this months BMFA NEws and saw this advert for braincube-aero.com and though "ohh, lights, we love lights"

Checked out their website and have to say, am a bit amazed they would spend money on an advert for a website with only 1 product, and a VERY expensive one at that!

 

Model lighting set, with lighting controller, is £48!

 

Checked out their contact us page and it claims they prefer email contact, and are very busy.... Thats odd, 1 product, more than twice the cost of all other model lighting systems, and yet they are very busy...

I happen to be very knowledgable with online business, and can tell you know, that basically means "We have day-jobs and prefer it if you didnt phone us" as we can reply to emails via our phones/blackberry...

 

Thats not a guess either, as any company would welcome enquiries by telephone, unless they were unable to take calls due to having a full time job.

 

Not saying thats a bad thing, just wish people would be honest about it. If they openly said, "We may not always be able to answer the phone due to work commitments" and made it clear this is not their full time job, people actually respect that honesty far more...

 

2 years their website has been online, and only the 1 product??? Very unusual... They say they will be launching some sort of in-flight combat system??? Would love to see that

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Hi Oliver

 

Thanks for dropping in, all be-it in a "self-defence" mode, I must say, I still do find it incredible that you actually sell any lights at all, as several of our club guys have some big models, and modellers competent enough to build models that size, will sort out their own lighting, at 1/10th the cost of yours, and I've seen the results too, with high intensity LED's, and like yours, they are often visible long before you can actually see the model fully, at great distance...

 

Many have the LED's in the leading edges of their wings, and when flown as far as the eye can see, the lights are pretty much the only thing you can see coming towards you, and yet these high intensity LED's cost pittance, they are dirt cheap, so how exactly does your come to be £48?

 

Not trying to upset you, but just saying realistically, as a electric model flyer, I cant actually see anybody paying that for a lighting kit, at all, or how it comes to be so expensive, when the lights themselves cost pennies... :unsure:

 

Well, I would however like to welcome you to 123RC anyhow, and would certainly hope you stick around, your welcome to share with us your RC expertise, nobody is trying to bash you for what you do, as I'd call it more of a lack of understanding as to how something is what it is....

 

Hope to hear more from you regularly even :)

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Back again!

 

Yes, I am being defensive, but you have to remember that everything you write in a forum like this is visible to the whole world via the magic of Google et. al. I've spent a significant portion of my meagre resources on advertising to build a profile in the market, and negative comments such as yours undermine that. I don't mind justifying my products, helps me practise my marketing ;-), but it did get under my skin that you question my integrity and the viability of the business.

 

Your reply makes a number of assumptions which I don't believe are valid. Firstly, just because someone can build a nice model does not mean they can design and produce a model lighting system. Most people don't know anything about electronics, LEDs, limiting resistors, etc., and would have to do a fair bit of research to learn what they need to know before they could even start. It's not simply a case of plugging an LED into a battery - that would most likely burn out the LED in a fraction of a second. If you want to make them remotely switchable, they you need either some kind of mechanical switch bodged up to a servo, or an electronic switch. If you want strobes, how do you make them flash? That requires some circuitry, which needs to be designed, prototyped and tested, it needs a printed circuit board that you either have to make yourself or have made for you somewhere. It all requires effort, and lets face it, for most of the people we're talking about model aircraft is their hobby, not electronics. In the end, every modeller has to ask "how much is my leisure time worth?".

 

Another assumption that you make is that the LEDs cost a pittance. I'm afraid that is simply wrong. An "ultra bright" 5mm LED, of the type that the £20 sets use, costs around 30p each in quantity. The power LEDs that I am using cost *pounds* each, even when you buy several hundred at a time from the primary distributor. The cheap lighting sets that I have looked at, have a total current draw of around 200 milliamps. Each of my light modules draws around that, and there are six in the set - that's why it's designed to run off a separate battery, I don't want to clobber someone's receiver power and kill a model. LED brightness is generally proportional to the current they draw, and my light modules are *at least* five times brighter than any 5mm LED out there. You also need to consider viewing angles. The cheap ultra-bright LEDs are that bright because they focus their light into a 10-15 degree cone, whereas the power LEDs I use have a 120 degree viewing angle. The models that you have seen with lights on - sure you can see the lights clearly when it's flying towards you, but can you still see them when it flies past, or in a turn? The lights on real aircraft have to be visible through 120 degrees or more, and none of the cheap sets that I have seen can provide that.

 

I'm not trying to rip anyone off, I set my prices to what I believe is a fair market price for the capabilities that my products offer, based on the parts cost, labour cost and reasonable profit margin. My lights are being favourably compared against sets from German and US manufacturers that charge over £200 per set! I've got customers world wide - Indonesia, Cyprus, Russia, Finland. Many of my customers have told me that they've tried a £20 light set, but couldn't see it in daylight and wanted something more powerful. Dave Wilshere, Steve Bishop, YT International all use my lights and are pleased with them.

 

In the words of the modelling press:

 

"If you're fed up with aircraft lighting systems and LEDs that you can only see in the dark, then these FlightLights from BrainCube Aeromodels could be the answer...If you ask us, £48 is a small price to pay for the guaranteed visibility that the set offers" - RCM&E Counterpoint, September 2010

"The set we are looking at here is from a new company, Braincube Aeromodels and is a very neat package indeed....The instructions warn of the brightness of the LEDs and they are right to do so; they are definitely NOT to be stared at!...The units all worked well, fitting them was relatively easy" - RCMW Review (pages 110-111), December 2010

 

I'll quit ranting now ;-) I can post some of the pictures my customers have sent me of their models with lights fitted if you like.

 

Cheers,

 

Oliver

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Hiya Oliver

 

Instead of getting so defensive, why not actually show us your product?

I'm a bit surprised you didnt do that right off from the start?

 

Give us examples of what they are comparable to...

 

Nobody is trying to bash you mate, heck I'd love to see everybody in the RC trade do well, but sometimes, things dont always "add-up" on the surface of it, so a bit more detail is required, so while I understand what your saying, we still havent seen this lighting kit, so currently, its still all talk and no product....

 

I'm not saying "I'm right", far from it, I may indeed be VERY wrong, but without seeing the product, how can I say anything else?

 

I use lights myself on a lot of my models, and it really is super simple, 12v LED stips, take a feed directly from your flight battery @ 350mAh per-metre, and you can buy a Tx controlled switch for £7.99 which is connected directly inline with the + connection to the lights so can be controlled remotely. Highly visible in daylight too, and for £48 I can use 4 metres of lights, and buy a remote receiver switch to control them... No knowledge of electronics is required either, its a super simple job to put some bullet connectors or JST plugs on the cables and join them up as the LED lights have the resisters in the strips already.

 

Flickering? Easy, same strips are available that have strobe/flashing patterns too... So, without seeing yours, making a comparison is REALLY difficult... So lets see them, show us... I'd love to be amazed at finding something so damn good, as I'm sure a lot of people would...

 

Do you have any video footage of your lights in action too?

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'Morning all. It's my first post - in fact I just joined the forum to put make a relevant comment/observation:

 

I fly model helicopters, one of which is a "not cheap" Hughes MD500E housing a Trex600E. Given that I'm still fairly new to the hobby, I've been very careful in making most of my choices when it comes to investing in my models and their components - there is a vast amount of information available on a growing number of forums and from a growing number of suppliers out there in our High Streets. Finding the information isn't hard, but acting on it can be perilous! I've driven what must add up to hundreds of miles to discuss "face to face" with well known suppliers what I actually think I want to do and have received so much advice that on more than a few occasions I've decided that my original plan wasn't a good one - usually resulting in me spending more money than anticipated because I'd either not thought it through or there was a better option that I didn't know existed.

 

On more than a couple of occasions, despite face to face discussion I've made a bad decision despite the specific advice of the person in the shop. You live and learn that a great deal of advice is based on personal justification for products already purchased, or worse - advice based on what's in stock as opposed to best advice.

 

Now - LED's. I was on business in London and made a point of fitting in a visit to a retailer that made his own LED solutions for model helicopters - I needed to discuss some requirements face to face having seen his advert in my research (I have no experience of electronics / LED's etc but want to be absoultely certain that the lights can be seen in daylight, are safe for my model and associated radio gear etc) and to cut a long story short, spent a little over £20 on a kit that would work a treat. 48hrs later, the lighting set was deemed to be awesome in my darkened garage but useless in daylight - the LED's on my receiver and BEC show brighter. One of the LED's became detatched during fitting, too.

 

I'd also bought an alternative set from another web based supplier - they look good on a 450 but nothing more - again, not very bright despite the claims.

 

Many mutterings later, I thought I'd give Brain Cube a shot at the title, and began communicating (by mail) with Oliver, who was helpful, timely and absolutely spot on with all of his claims and advice. He even helped my with LIPO protection warning devices that weren't supplied by him and which needed some tweaking before I could fit them in my model - this help included donating a couple of small components that he could put his hands on at the time.

 

So more than £100 later, I have an awesome set of LED's fitted to my Hughes model - my local club members are in awe - no exageration. By the way - £50 went to Oliver, £50 spent on cheaper kits that simply weren't up to the job. Like I said, you live and learn.

 

Over the weekend I bombarded him with some iPhone video clips of my heli in action - they are his to with as he sees fit. I've never met, spoken or shared a shower with him but can testify that his products are the best I've seen in terms of performance, build quality, flexibility and packaging - they even arrive with a multi page manual that even a numpty like me can follow without error. OK - not a complete numpty - you can't be with electric heli's - but novice enough to seek advice and sanity checks before I do anything that has the slightest chance of effecting the way my model flies (with safety and investment protection in mind - if my heli crashes it's a anything between £500 and £1200 per crash).

 

If you read this, Oliver, you'll know who I am (no one else hit your mail box like I did recently) - I'll offer my thanks not just for your product (met my requirements perfectly - but that's just me) in addition to making a strong recommendation that anyone with a model lighting requirement should drop him a note. A few of the "big boys" out there could take a lesson or two from a one man band in terms of advice, customer service and quality.

 

I hope that this helps - there may or may not be better lighting kits out there - but this one works so well that I'll be fitting a set to another 600 (pod and boom) so that I can get better orientation at a greater distance as I develop my flying skills in this not-so-great light that we have these days.

 

 

 

 

Hiya Oliver

 

Instead of getting so defensive, why not actually show us your product?

I'm a bit surprised you didnt do that right off from the start?

 

Give us examples of what they are comparable to...

 

Nobody is trying to bash you mate, heck I'd love to see everybody in the RC trade do well, but sometimes, things dont always "add-up" on the surface of it, so a bit more detail is required, so while I understand what your saying, we still havent seen this lighting kit, so currently, its still all talk and no product....

 

I'm not saying "I'm right", far from it, I may indeed be VERY wrong, but without seeing the product, how can I say anything else?

 

I use lights myself on a lot of my models, and it really is super simple, 12v LED stips, take a feed directly from your flight battery @ 350mAh per-metre, and you can buy a Tx controlled switch for £7.99 which is connected directly inline with the + connection to the lights so can be controlled remotely. Highly visible in daylight too, and for £48 I can use 4 metres of lights, and buy a remote receiver switch to control them... No knowledge of electronics is required either, its a super simple job to put some bullet connectors or JST plugs on the cables and join them up as the LED lights have the resisters in the strips already.

 

Flickering? Easy, same strips are available that have strobe/flashing patterns too... So, without seeing yours, making a comparison is REALLY difficult... So lets see them, show us... I'd love to be amazed at finding something so damn good, as I'm sure a lot of people would...

 

Do you have any video footage of your lights in action too?

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I would have posted images earlier, but I was answering using my phone and all my photos etc are on my PC. Using my PC now, so here's some photos ;-) I've also attached a photo comparing a typical "Ultra-bright" 5mm LED that you can get from Maplins etc, with one of my new metal-cored power LED modules. I've also just been sent some videos by a happy customer that I've put on YouTube with his permission:

That's a T-Rex 600e with an MD500 body, a pretty big helicopter.

 

The FlightLights set is intended for use on larger models, to make them more realistic. I've had one customer fit them to a 1/4 scale Panther jet, which won this years scale award at Cosford. Dave Wilshere has fitted them to his 2.6m Canadian Tutor jets that he competed with at an international competition in Germany earlier this year (and he actively recommends my light sets to his customers). RCMW magazine fitted them to a 10-foot Cessna 182 for their review. My new demonstrator model that I'm in the process of finishing is a YT International Corsair, 74" span and 2.6kW power train. I would not expect someone with a £150 parkflier to buy a £48 lighting set, that doesn't make sense, but someone with a £500+ six-foot scale model might well find it reasonable to spend £48 making it look significantly more realistic in flight - you can easily spend that on a scale cockpit, never mind scale retracts.

 

The example you give of your lights setup isn't really comparable to either my FlightLights set, or the cheap £20 lights sets. Fair enough, you've fitted lights to your model as a bit of bling, to make it stand out and look cool. I'm not trying to compete with that - indeed, I *can't* compete with that, all I could do would be try and import reels of the light strips cheaper than anyone else. My lights are designed to add realism to a model, FlightLights do that, you're light strips don't. I have a lower-power light set going into production now, which will retail for around £24 and is aimed at smaller models - that set will be a much better value proposition to folks with scale park-fliers and the like. I'll be fitting them to my e-Flite Ultimate practice model, I'll post images once that's up and running if you like.

 

PS: Thank's very much for the kind words WobblyBob!

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You're welcome Braincube - credit where it's due.

But I'm seriously gutted that the lights on the 'planes you show look way more impressive than my heli :angry: but that said, I took those clips with an iphone - they simply don't do the lights justice.

 

Here's a quick iphone video comparison. I bought the set on the 600 pod and boom - they are the best lights I'd found until I discovered the Braincube product.

 

http://www.youtube.c...u/1/-IZTu4REUu0

Edited by Rich

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Oliver / Bob

 

Thanks for showing us all those lights, I have to say, those truly are, PUKKA, and like you say, are designed for the big boys models, and when you put them into perspective, your absolutely right, perfectly fitting for a £500+ scale fuselage, and not your average foamie...

Like I said mate, wasnt trying to bash you, or your products, just had nothing at all to visualise, no point of reference, thus it didnt add-up untill seeing those piccies and vid's...

 

Nice work :D

 

Also, I'd love to say a huge thanks for taking the time out to provide your input too, and I'm positive others would love to see more of your lighting kits in action if your able to show more?

That Corsair sounds excellent, I hope you will stop by and show us the finished article?

 

Oh, and do let me know when the battle thingy is ready too, count me in for one, we have a load of leccy battle models that fly full range that I'm sure a few of our club guys would love to put them on...

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