Backup remote/control method for VESC

Any suggestions for a backup throttle for a VESC, which I could use if my remote fails out on the water? I’ll have a phone with me on the water, with vesc tool, which I could use to switch input methods. I usually travel about 1.5km off shore with my tow boogie for waves, and I prefer not to swim back if the remote fails. Commercial remotes such as maytech, erayfoil, eskate, are unreliable after a while.

I was thinking I could use an ADC input, and switch the input method with vesc tool while on the water if required.

I don’t think you can run two pwm inputs to the vesc.
My vesc only has a single uart, with Bluetooth dongle already connected for vesc tool.

The motor control feature in vesc tool doesn’t seem to work very well, and I’d rather have a button or trigger.

A wired remote ?
20 char of course

Via the ADC input? I wonder if there are any tidy wired remote designs on

A 2nd Maytech transmitter in a waterproof container? If the 1st maytech stops working, grab the 2nd one?

You might be able to select “ppm and Uart” in vesc tool. Then wire in a button on the pelican case to the ppm port. A variable resistor could get you to a good speed for getting you back home.

I’ve done a few swims with my TB after loosing a remote, and other issues. Awkward as! A back up would be useful.

A wired remote is not necessary as it could be a same ankle magnetic leash with two waterproof magnetic switches installed:

  • position 1: remote activated 0-100%, as we know it today
  • +NEW+: position 2: 0-80% automatic progressive rampup without remote, a fail safe position that you can test every time during the first minute of your session and where a fail = NO GO.

Could be a thumb throtte:

The uart is currently used by the Bluetooth vesc tool dongle. Can you have two remotes running simultaneously via uart and ppm? I figure I could switch the app in vesc tool from ppm and uart to ppm and adc if I have a remote failure.

Has anyone had two simultaneous control methods running with a vesc?

Soefoil, are you suggesting adc mode with your two magnetic leash position solution?

Try to get your hands on a Fero-remote? Feels solid like a tank compared to my Erayfoil remote. I worry a lot about things failing on my tow boogie but the remote is not one of those things. :slight_smile:

I’ve setup a reed switch window sensor via a voltage divider, set at 1.75v, into the ADC input on my VESC. I’ll mount it on the tow point, where I hold on to it when I need to tow while lying on my board (such as when rescuing a drowning swimmer). I can switch the vesc from ppm+uart to adc+uart with my phone if I have a remote failure. I can set it to a throttle level in vesc tool that allows for a slow but comfortable prone tow home.

The felix remote might be a tank, but I dropped my last erayfoil in the surf, and that could happen to any remote. The rest of my tow boogie is very reliable, it’s always been a remote issue that has caused a swim for me.

The Felix remote floats!

I think you can just use the vesc tool throttle to limp home with if you have a bluetooth module and your phone with you. Easiest and cheapest probably!

I tried that, but it wasn’t working for me when I tested the vesc tool motor control feature. Using the touch screen while in the water also isn’t practical for a 1.5km tow home. A reed switch on the tow point is much more usable.

Yes, using @jeffM solution with the pull-down 10k resistor. There must be some kind of protection above the kill switch boxes (a toggle slider + a red color code), so that in a stressful situation, one doesn’t confuse between remote and auto position.
In addition, the auto mode must be kill leash operated to stop even if used on a tow boogie.

It would be difficult to swim fast enough after the tow boogie if it keeps going without you :joy:

This could lead to a new concept: the 6m long safety cord with magnet in the pocket that you deploy only in case of emergency :grinning:

In auto mode, it could be designed to only pull you when pressure is applied to the rope. So when you fall off it stops. Tug the rope and it starts making more tension on the rope.

A spare remote is probably the best option though tucked in a waterproof case, either on you or on the boogie.

With the Bremote you could make a spare super cheap, and could be mounted into the handle just a press button to go.

The felix-remote is also black so even if it floats it will be pretty difficult to find in the surf. Maybe if you paint it orange.

Hi there you can just use a touch sensitive switch which is made from 316 stainless and 100% waterproof this will then run a circuit that produces a pwm signal that you can preprogram for power and time. When pushed it will run for a set time Just need 5v and wire it into the esc signal input. I make and sell a unit designed for surfboards if you want to buy one.

type or paste code here

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Works well with the window reed switch on the tow point. I have the magnet in the Velcroed on part, which I put in my thumb to hold over the reed switch while holding onto the tow point. With a ten second ramp in the vesc, and the throttle curve adjusted to allow a moderate amount of fixed throttle. I can switch from ppm+uart to adc+uart, and it gets me back to shore.

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How would ou adapt this procedure on a standard efoil board ?