Multirotors

Discussion in 'General Plane Discussion' started by Tired Old Man, Jun 4, 2014.

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  1. Jun 4, 2014 #1

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    I'm going to share a secret. I've been flying multirotors for a while now and having a lot of fun with them. A bit different for sure, easier than planes once you get used to them, and they have some interesting attributes. Once in a while I even put a camera on one to film objects or natural features but I don't ever film people without first obtaining permission or being asked to. I don't fly FPV. So I haven't backed up on my aversion to using our toys for surveillance. Cinematography and art, yea, but not using them as "watchers".

    So I'm curious, how many others are flying multirotors and what level of advancement have you achieved? What types and sizes? Flight controllers being used, etc.

    I promise not to bite anyone, and I won't even get sour if FPV is mentioned. But if you do fly FPV I'd sure like to hear about the safeties you utilize to assure that you don't run into anything or get so far away you won't make it back on a battery set. Tell us you're doing it right and about your set up. Heck, we may just end up with another forum if the responses demonstrate a significant interest.

    For the record, I've flown the little living room type quads and had small time fun in the house. I have a 3d Robotics quad using APM 2.6 and have put a few flights in on a Cinestar 800mm heavy lift rig using a DJI Naza M flight controller and a 3 axis gimbal. Tried working with a DJI A2 F.C. with terrible luck, but that's a story for another day.
     
  2. Jun 4, 2014 #2

    BRUTUS

    BRUTUS

    BRUTUS

    Plank Junky Lifetime Supporter

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    T.O.M. is coming out of the closet! Flying quads?



    The end is nigh!
     
  3. Jun 4, 2014 #3

    lxcoupe

    lxcoupe

    lxcoupe

    Can I say that?

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    Nice Pat!

    I just ordered a couple of cheapy quads to play with while I'm still in the sand box. I plan on getting one of the 3d robotics when I get home. The mission planner software is scary similar to the stuff i use at work.

    we'll see how it goes.
     
  4. Jun 4, 2014 #4

    Flatspinjim

    Flatspinjim

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    I bought one of the little Estes quads last winter to fly around the house. Had a great time with it.
     
  5. Jun 4, 2014 #5

    Vital-Rc

    Vital-Rc

    Vital-Rc

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    I have 2 myself; a phantom with a dual battery set up , 2axis gimbal , and 9" carbon props .

    The other one is a dji 550 with custom landing gear , 3 axis gimbal, upgraded bearings ( stock motors suck) , and 4s setup .

    I use naza on the phantom and wookong m on the 550 , they are also both setup for fpv on a 7" screen . I like the mini Iosd and dji video down link as it is pretty stable . I don't fly fpv but only use it to align my camera shots.
     
  6. Jun 4, 2014 #6

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    LX,

    You'll like the 3d Robotics. Their new X8 is a stellar performer. The Iris is considerably less expensive but the performance difference between the X8 and the Iris justifies a large part of the greater expense. They have good customer service as well. You're software has come a long ways since I worked with it, and that's a good thing:) The 3DR software is truly outstanding, and the ability to tweak the software codes puts it miles above just about everything out there. I was quite surprised to find the navigation reference modes included MGRS.

    If you elect to fly the system from a laptop you might want to have someone there with you to handle the transmitter if needed. You can takeoff and land from the laptop and "fly the mission" but if things aren't going the way you want them to going to manual at the flip of a switch can be helpful. Just remember your flight plan can be a heck of a lot longer than the batteries are capable of completing;) But at least you'll know the GPS coordinates of where the copter auto landed when the battery failsafe triggered.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  7. Jun 4, 2014 #7

    Jedijody

    Jedijody

    Jedijody

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    :toetap:

    Small quads are a gateway ISR drug. :willynilly:

    Just say NO to helioclopters!!! :SICK2:

    :prrr:
     
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  8. Jun 4, 2014 #8

    lxcoupe

    lxcoupe

    lxcoupe

    Can I say that?

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    Who says i'll be using batteries for anything other than powering the electronics?:leaving:

    I do like being able to use mgrs ! Do you know how many digits it goes to? Now i have to go back and look..
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  9. Jun 4, 2014 #9

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    Octo's too!

    I had become a bit bored with fixed wing RC and having to drive 90+ miles to a decent flying site, that also have noise police, was a bit burdensome. Plus there's the constant issues with transporting and assembling aircraft every time you want to go out. With a quad I just leave it in the back of the P.U. and you can fly the darn things on a lot the size of a postage stamp as long as you pay attention to public and property safety. Not to mention their privacy rights;)

    If you're into photography you can get into places and shoot high quality photographs-video at angles you could not ever try without using a stable platform that has the ability to hover. Perhaps I'm a bit of a romantic but I know I have always enjoyed photography and appreciate art. There are times and places where natural features are just to beautiful not to be able to leave with just a memory when you could have a photograph. The ISR/public surveillance/law enforcement thing is still something I'm totally against. There's just no way to enforce any law that limits the extent of use by the government and none of them (government, law enforcement) would ever be held criminally liable and imprisoned for violating any law written.

    The darn things can be pretty maneuverable as well, so you can develop some tight flying skills that permit a similar level of enjoyment as that found with fixed wing flight.

    Vital,

    If you're flying DJI take a moment to read the changes to their software updates in the notes before uploading. If you don't see anything in the notes that isn't going to benefit and you had stable software before, consider not updating the software. They make some fun stuff but too many times the next level of software introduced a problem not there before.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  10. Jun 4, 2014 #10

    Vital-Rc

    Vital-Rc

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    I've read several issues with others on the forum regarding that . I haven't updated firmware in awhile , I can't even remember the version now I would have to look . I have all features I could ask for now and the wookong is amazingly stable . I haven't flown the a2 yet but at its price tag I don't think it's needed for my operation just yet . I spend more time now dialing in my 3 axis gimbal and modding go pros so I don't have the classic fish eye . The programming is fun and its got me interested in Rc again , I got burned out pretty bad .
     
  11. Jun 4, 2014 #11

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    Avoid the A2. That's all I'll say about that subject. Wookong and Naza are both really good operational systems but in both cases the older software has been the best. 5.16 for the Wookong has functioned extremely well for those that stuck with it. There are some features in all of the more recent and upcoming DJI F.C. software updates you may not like, and you won't find out about them in some cases until your aircraft won't work. Those are airport area restrictions that in many ways I agree with but their incorporation was much to all inclusive and the methodology leaves a lot to be desired.

    Another good F.C. is X-Aircraft. Very similar to Wookong for half the money and equal or better functionality. If you ever want to connect with a high end multirotor vendor with extremely great customer service, check into Addictive RC.

    I've been having so much fun with this stuff I'm seriously considering selling most of my larger RC stuff. I'll keep a couple of planes but it looks like most of the rest will end up hangar queens and I don't have the space for that. That means I'll be sending out the Compy Yak and the 46% Ultimate and their stuff to other runways where they can be better used and appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  12. Jun 4, 2014 #12

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    You can knock down the fish eye by using 1080p in a narrow mode. If you have a GoPro White you just set them to 1080p and they shoot narrow automatically. 720p pretty much sucks for graininess and most always is wide angle. I couldn't afford "the Black" so the white version made some of it a little easier for set up.

    There's a company out there that is upgrading lenses on GoPros, can't remember their name but they end up a top video quality $900.00 camera. Yea, $900.00...


    Sent from my iPhone using RC Plane Forum
     
  13. Jun 5, 2014 #13

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    Vital,

    The Go Pro 3 White goes into a narrow view when set to 1080p and 30 fps. I'm not sure the Go Pro 3 Black does the same but I do believe it has a narrow shooting mode. I was looking at some vids done with a Black at 1080p and 60fps at it appeared to still have quite a bit of fish eye.
     
  14. Jun 5, 2014 #14

    Cris

    Cris

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    Pat those are the same reasons i started flying multis. I have several. 450 quad and two 550 hex. The 450 is line of sight flying only. One 550 is fpv only .The other 550 is setup for fpv with brushless gimbal for aerial footage. Both fpv have OSD and have failsafe set to RTH . You can turn the tx off or lose signal they just fly home and land. We always use a spotter also. I have several sets of googles and also a monitor set up for spectators. As you have seen our field is out in bumfuk so no innocents to concern ourselves about. I did have a naza m v2 fail. The copter crashed about 2 miles away but with my dvr footage we found it.
     
  15. Jun 5, 2014 #15

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    Regarding the unlicensed use of 5.8, the following was excerpted from another forum that was written some time ago.
    ************************

    Canada and the USA have harmonized spectrum rules, so we can simply review the USA's FCC Part 15 regulations. But before we do that, here are some useful things to know.

    1. On RF devices like our analog video devices, the RF Power is NOT observed by the RF rules and any reference to RF power is meaningless. The rules only observe the Radiated Power of the combined transmitter and its specifically approved antenna.

    2. The regulations are concerned with more than just the radiated RF levels of the main operating frequency. The device needs to be tested for a variety of criteria (for example, radiated harmonics are very important).

    3. And that is why NOTHING is license-free unless it specifically has a valid FCC registration number printed on it (or printed in the manual if the device is too small for a label). It is the registration number, and only the registration number, that allows license-free use. No other criteria will allow license-free operation in the USA.

    In a nutshell, item #3 is the most important and everything else is meaningless. So, anyone operating in North America, that says (for example) that they don't need a license because the video transmitter is low power, is operating illegally because they would need a RF device identified with an assigned registration number to do that.

    the Part 15 rules say this (non-digital applications):



    Section 15.249 Operation within the bands 902 - 928 MHz, 2400 - 2483.5 MHz, 5725 - 5875 MHz,
    and 24.0 - 24.25 GHz.

    (a) The field strength of emissions from intentional radiators operated within these frequency bands shall comply with the following:

    Fundamental......... Field Strength......... Field Strength
    Frequency........... of Fundamental......... of Harmonics
    .................... (millivolts/meter).... (microvolts/meter)
    __________________________________________________________________
    902 - 928 MHz........... 50....................... 500
    2400 - 2483.5 MHz....... 50....................... 500
    5725 - 5875 MHz......... 50....................... 500
    24.0 - 24.25 GHz........ 250..................... 2500
    __________________________________________________________________

    ( b ) Field strength limits are specified at a distance of 3 meters.
    ( c ) Emissions radiated outside of the specified frequency bands, except for harmonics, shall be attenuated by at least 50 dB below the level of the fundamental or to the general radiated emission limits in
    Section 15.209, whichever is the lesser attenuation.
    ( d ) As shown in Section 15.35, for frequencies above 1000 MHz, the above field strength limits are based on average limits. However, the peak field strength of any emission shall not exceed the maximum permitted average limits specified above by more than 20 dB under any condition of modulation.



    Note the absence of "RF Power" in the rules.

    So, at 900MHz - 5.8GHz a North American license-free device is allowed 50mV/meter at 3 meters of radiated field strength. Translating this to an equivalent RF power when a 0dBi antenna is used, would be about 0.5 milliwatts ERP (0.0005 watts). If the antenna has gain then the RF power would need to be less in order to be compliant with the regulations. So, approved transmitters will include the allowed antenna; any optional accessory antennas would need to be listed in the submitted test data.

    But all of this is a don't care if you have a ham radio license and operate under those rules.
     
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  16. Jun 5, 2014 #16

    MadMonkey

    MadMonkey

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    Estes Proto, Blade Nano QX for my minis, then two Armattan quads (an M310 aluminum and CF 355), and just sold an F550 I built as a GoPro rig. I'm shopping for my next hexacopter.

    A friend and I are waiting for a film rig consisting of a Flying POV Big Mama octo + gimbal for carrying small digitals up to Red Epics. It should be here on the 10th.

    I'm also about to order an Armattan CF226, which has a lifetime warranty on the frame. I can't recommend Armattan multis enough, they're very well built and the CF frames are TOUGH. Price isn't bad either for what you're getting... and soon he'll have his own line of motors built by T-Motor AND his own ESCs.

    As for advancement, well... I keep breaking props in midair, so I'm definitely flying hard :D
     
  17. Jun 5, 2014 #17

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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    Gotta link to those Armattan products? BTW, Vulcan makes some really nice frames. A bit over priced though. He has a 1200mm folder with lots of real estate up top.


    Sent from my iPhone using RC Plane Forum
     
  18. Jun 5, 2014 #18

    MadMonkey

    MadMonkey

    MadMonkey

    That's MISTER idiot to you!

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    RCGroups thread:

    http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1843444&pp=25

    Armattan website:

    http://armattanquads.com/

    I've flown several different quads and the carbon fiber 355 with the Naze Acro board is the most fun so far. I'm hoping the 226 will be even better
    :thumbsup:
     
  19. Jun 6, 2014 #19

    Tired Old Man

    Tired Old Man

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  20. Jun 6, 2014 #20

    Vital-Rc

    Vital-Rc

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    I tried the narrow view thing and it still wasn't producing the results I was after. I cracked open the go pro and made a few changes and now I am very happy with the results. I use an arris cm3000 gimbal which produces very stable images/video and I highly recommend it as it uses the alexmos 3 axis board. I would like a bigger rig and upgrade to the nex 7. If I sell my 550 that will be the route I take.

    I sold all my planes but 2; my garage is empty, my enclosed trailer is empty, and so is my shop. For the past 8 months i've focus on multirotors and it's really got me interested in RC again. I use photoshop and windows movie maker. If you want to remove the fish eye from the go pro let me know and I will send you a PM on what I did.

    Here are a few pics, first one is using the stock go pro settings.

    [​IMG]

    Modded
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Here is a raw video of me in a 172, as you can see there is no fish eye.

    [ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6h9W9yDcCo&list=UUeTID8DdtGvrkOaY-gifaMQ[/ame]
     

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