Friday, September 23, 2016

Summer nearly here ...

After a long break over winter, I did manage to get a good amount of flying in and have improved alot. So now its time to do a few more builds, or actually put up the ones I have completed.

Like the QAV210 and the Armattan Armadillo with the 3D printed stuff I have made for those builds. I will get onto those on the coming week. I also have lots of spare parts that I am pondering what to create.

One I plan to do have is resurrect the flip acro frame and make it FPV and the same for the fortis tricopter. Get some of the bigger birds back onto the air. I also have a couple of wings to make, never flown a wing before so that should be fun.

plenty to come in the coming months.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Diversity Ground Station

So a couple of months back I finished my diversity ground station. I did take photos of it while building, but not really enough to do a proper build log. I had to redo a few things and forgot to capture those part.

But the upshot is that I now have a very cool ground station.

It runs off a 3s battery, has a master power switch that arms the whole station and has 2 video and power feeds for goggles. One is dedicated to fatshark and is limited to 8v, so with my custom cable I can power the fan on the Dominator v3s.

Each of the power feeds also have there own switch.

For diversity its running the FR632 and uses pig tails to have external SMAs at the top of the lid.
A 7 inch screen for testing and allowing bystanders, and my young daughter / spotter to watch me crash..!!!

Of course lots of little 3D printed parts to make it look clean.

It works extremely well and I'm super happy with the final product.

So if anybody wants more details leave a comment.

Here are a couple of photos.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Armattan F1-5 Acro - Custom

I needed a new acro frame ... this is it.

Well it had to happen I destroyed my LOS 5inch acro frame, The rubber band that held the battery cable out of the way broke, the cable flew loose tied up one prop ... and down it tumbled ... from about 75 feet .... yip that hurt. A 4mm arm, top and bottom plates and a naze32.

So after my success and overall  happiness with Armattan frames I got on special a F1-5 Acro, this one has the 4mm non routed arms. Time to rebuild a new acro frame.

I had one main aim ... I wanted the battery on the top. I hate having it on the bottom as I always crash or come out of loops late close to the ground and hit the underside 9 times out of 10. I have lost more batteries that way than any other. So the main aim was a strong frame and to have the battery mounted on the top.

With the f1-5 Acro I built the bottom plate using a plate that didnt use capture nuts that are used on other Armattan builds. This allowed me to use bolts to come up and then screw into alloy standoffs. The arms and top plate, the F1FC integrated Naze32 are mounted as usual.

I did swap the power train on this build to use littlebees 20amps and Titan 2204s.

The arms and the bottom plate ready for the top plate.

The Armattan F1-FC is great for tidy and simplified builds. I have used this on my F1-5 FPV and they are great. Yes they are currently only Rev5 but for my level of skill and flying its not a limiting factor. 

This is the finished F1-FC, as you can see its really clean, and this is with LEDs and telemetry on there.

Unfortunately I forgot to get a photo of the next steps, but its pretty straight forward. Instead of using nuts on the bolts that came up through the frame I used 10mm alloy standoffs. Then I used another base plate that is bolted to the standoffs. This gives a triple deck and makes the frame super strong, but the main thing is that it gives a strong place to mount your battery on top of the frame, which was my main aim. 

The 10mm standoffs give enough space to mount the Frsky D4Rii transmitter to the bottom of the top plate directly over the F1-FC. I just added a 3D printed plate for the velcro strap. This was bolted on via the top plates 35 holes. I then used window insulation foam to protect the battery and also helps with lateral battery movement.

 The top view of the complete frame.

The integrated buzzer and LEDs I got from

I also covered the bottom plate and the arms in some cheap book cover seal that I found in a book store, just to make it look a little different.

I printed some standard bolt pattern feet to help protect the frame. And as with all my frames the arms have 4mm nylon tube wrapped around them. It sure helps protect them from the tarmac and is very light and easy to replace.

Already for its maiden flight. When flying acro I use green props for the front and other colours for the rear.

After a little bit of very basic tuning, it flew great and handled failed new tricks and crashes really well. I doubt if I will be breaking this little beastly.

While out flying the F1-F5 FPV I though why not just throw on the GoPro on the acro and get a video of me doing some basic LOS acro. 

Below is how dodgy the strapping of the GoPro to the frame was for the flight, but it worked. 

Heres the video ...

If you have any questions flick me an email or comment.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Armattan f1-5 with integrated Naze

I am a sucker for cool new things, and when Chris from Armattan released a integrated Naze32 / PDB for the F1 range of frames. So order another F1-5 with the additional F1FC.

10days later it arrived in little old New Zealand

The integrated PDB / Naze board.

Time to start the build, base plate with the captured nuts.

Quick mock up, ... frame nearly done ;)

Added the XT60 pigtail. I no longer attach the XT60 directly to the PDB.

Next up was the ESCs, I used littlebees 20s

Next up was the Titan 2204s, wires cut to length then soldered to the ESCs. 

Next I added PPM lead which is a servo extension, the same for the LED strip from pin 5, and lastly the Frsky telemetry.

Finally the buzzer

Call me paranoid, but I then covered the bottom of the board where the carbon arms overlap with insulation tape. 

I also had this carbon top plate that I used to cover and protect the Naze, I used 5mm nylon standoffs to mount to the top plate.

View from the the bottom plate.

Then I it was just a matter of connecting the D4RII.

The LEDs, I use the same method, a servo extension soldered to the naze and the other soldered to the supplied programable LED board.

 Bottom plate all complete.

On the first version I used 2 pins soldered on the board to provide power to the VTX, I later changed this to the servo extension lead method.

I added my 3d printed feet, to help protect the frame.

I also used CA to wick the ends of the arms to help prevent delimitation of crashes. I also wrap each arm in PVC tube, which works really well for protection. 

moving onto the camera mount I made a little chair to hold the camera at a consistent 20 angle. I have found that with how often I crash the cases on the hs1177 dont hold up very well. With the little chair it hold the camera at the right angle and the side screws only have to hold in horizontal movement.

I used 3m double sided to hold to the chair.

I got also designed a case for the ET200 VTX I use, this mounts it over the CG and provides great protection, the lid is just ziptied on. Below is the top plate all mounted with the sma pig tail and the servo extension plugs on the camera and power.

Camera all mounted

Ready to join to two halves

All mounted you can see the clearance from the VTX case to the Naze plate protector.

After a few Flights I decided to not use the camera plates and just use a camera "chair" This allows me to change angle with different "chairs"

Front of the f1-5, Nice and clean.

Love this frame, it may not be the lightest with my mods, but it sure is durable. The integrated naze makes the build super easy and clean. I have ordered another one for my other F1 I was that impressed. 

I will then have two almost identical FPV 5inch rigs to go and fly the heck out of. 

If you are interested in the 3d printed parts they are here. 

Bumpers / VTX case

Gopro mount