Latest Activity

3D Robotics
Craig Elder replied to Steve's discussion Which Software To Use with PX4, Qgroundcontrol or APM:Copter?
"Steve you sound pretty misinformed.  I use all of the GCS programs daily and they all work for…"
7 minutes ago
Daniel Lukonis left a comment for Lia Reich
"Awesome! Another Raleigh based drone company! Congrats on the coalition."
14 minutes ago
Gerard Toonstra commented on Gerard Toonstra's blog post Redesigning multirotor ESC's
"@Hugues: 1. All esc's are (at least) able to determine the electrical rpm of the motor (the…"
17 minutes ago
Daniel Lukonis commented on Gerard Toonstra's blog post Redesigning multirotor ESC's
"Awesome! I'll support your project if you do a funding drive."
17 minutes ago


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Welcome to DIY Drones!

Welcome to the largest community for amateur Unmanned Aerial Vehicles! Use the tabs and drop-down menus above to navigate the site.


This community is the home of ArduPilot (now known as APM), the world's first universal autopilot platform (planes, multicopters of all sorts and ground rovers). Today the Pixhawk and APM 2.6 autopilots run a variety of powerful free and open UAV software systems, including:

  • APM:Copter, a fully-autonomous multicopter and heli UAV system
  • APM:Plane, a pro-level UAV system for planes of all types
  • APM:Rover, a fully-autonomous ground-based vehicle system

I'm new to all this--where do I start?                   Are amateur UAVs legal? (yes)

Examples of civilian uses of drones                   Glossary of confusing terms 

Blog Posts

Redesigning multirotor ESC's

Posted by Gerard Toonstra on October 21, 2014 at 6:18am 27 Comments

It's been quiet on my front, but that was because I was redesigning ESC's (for multirotors and AP's).

Most of the ESC's for multirotor use the SimonK firmware on a relatively simple Atmel microcontroller. There's a single control wire running from the autopilot to the ESC, which is a signal…


PrecisionHawk Joins 3DR And Other Industry Leaders As Members of Small UAV Coalition

Posted by Lia Reich on October 20, 2014 at 12:13pm 1 Comment

PrecisionHawk, an information delivery company that uses a small, lightweight UAV [Unmanned Aerial Vehicle] and cloud-based software to collect, process and analyze aerial data, announced…


Meet the T1000, 1+hr flight times w/ 1kg payload

Posted by Sean Skirvin on October 19, 2014 at 11:33pm 20 Comments

I would like to introduce the DIYD community to my project, the T1000.  This is a tandem rotor helicopter based on T-Rex 450 parts, with custom 425mm asymmetrical blades.  The initial goal for the project (in 2011) was to have a fpv platform that could fly for over 1/2 hour.  I now think we can now achieve a 1+hr flight…


Applied Aeronautics - Albatross Design Contest

Posted by Applied Aeronautics on October 19, 2014 at 10:30pm 30 Comments

As we are rapidly approaching the official release of the Albatross line of aircraft, we thought there would be no better way of saying thank you than by giving away a free airframe to someone in the community. As such we have decided a design contest is in order for the best paint scheme, with the winning…


Foam-printing ArduCopter on display at the Science Museum in London

Posted by Chris Anderson on October 19, 2014 at 9:36pm 1 Comment

From the Guardian: "Currently on display at the Science Museum, London, is a 3D-printing drone created by Dr Mirko Kovac from Imperial College London…


Spaceplane Project Trials

Posted by RocketMan on October 19, 2014 at 8:30am 2 Comments

Chris Courtois has been working the trials on the Condore spaceplane project with Team Prometheus for several years now. After all his wonderful work we are gaining experience needed to proceed ahead.

  In conjunction Jetmanhuss at VskyLabs has been developing the model for X-Plane allowing us to try different configurations and develop the model…


DVD Delivery By DRONE

Posted by AKRCGUY on October 18, 2014 at 8:42pm 16 Comments

Netflix joked about it, I thought I'd give it a try since my brother in law wanted to borrow one of my DVD's.  Here are the results.

Air Traffic Control for Drones - MIT Technology Review

Posted by Marco Sterk on October 17, 2014 at 1:41pm 8 Comments

Repost from MIT Technology Review:

How do you keep small drone aircraft safe in the world’s busiest national airspace? One idea is to have them use cellphone networks to feed data back to an air traffic control system made just for drones.

A startup called Airware is working with…


Air bag parachute for drones as extra safety feature?

Posted by Winfried Rijssenbeek on October 16, 2014 at 2:00pm 5 Comments

Due to the safety aspects of the man drone we "invented" a combination of airbag and parachute with the purpose of opening the parachute in a spit second. We made a small testing sample. and we think it can work. So the idea is that a drone in an emergency situation would ignite a rocket parachute and that this one would open by airbag at the the top. Think that for normal drones (_tumble bee_ ) this might also be interesting. Anyone interested in such development, or sees…



Season Two of the Trust Time Trial (T3) Contest 
A list of all T3 contests is here. The current round, the Drone Delivery Challenge, is here

UAV news from sUAS News

Create your own Google Earth – in real time with DroneDeploy’s mapping engine for drones

Create your own Google Earth – in real time with DroneDeploy’s mapping engine for drones

DroneDeploy is launching the first drone software capable of creating orthorectified maps in real-time. Farmers, surveyors and search and rescue teams typically had to wait for 4-6 hours for maps to be created out of drone imagery, but now can…

Design of Small, Safe and Robust Quadrotor Swarms

Design of Small, Safe and Robust Quadrotor Swarms

This work presents the capabilities and demonstrates the robustness of the “Pico Quadrotor” – the smallest autonomous quadrotor at the time of publication of this video. We also demonstrate the pico quadrotor’s ability to fly in formations and its robustness…

Velodyne’s HDL-32E 3D LiDAR Sensor ‘Spins’ on Multiple Mobile Mapping Systems at InterGEO in Berlin

Velodyne’s HDL-32E 3D LiDAR Sensor ‘Spins’ on Multiple Mobile Mapping Systems at InterGEO in Berlin

At InterGEO – Geodesy, Geoinformation and Land Management, held in Berlin, Germany, Oct. 7-9, Velodyne’s real-time HDL-32E 3D LiDAR sensors were out in force – a testament to the company’s expanded industry leadership.  On display were deployments from Topcon, with its new…

CalUAS Changes Name to Monarch, Inc.

CalUAS Changes Name to Monarch, Inc.

California Unmanned Aircraft Systems (CalUAS) a company that manufacturers unmanned aircraft systems for 3D mapping in the precision agriculture, energy, and survey sectors, announced today that they are changing their company name and establishing headquarters in Ridgecrest, California. “Monarch, Inc.,…

Phoenix Aerial Introduces Low Cost UAV LiDAR System

Phoenix Aerial Introduces Low Cost UAV LiDAR System

Phoenix Aerial Systems, a leading manufacturer of unmanned aerial LiDAR products, announced today two new revolutionary LiDAR products, the Scout and the Ranger. The Scout is a lightweight, accurate and low cost solution for companies looking to enter the mapping…

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