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Large OctaPlane

I have been working on a quadplane project for the past few months with mixed results.  This…See More
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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 birthplace of ArduPilot, the world's first universal autopilot platform (planes, multicopters of all sorts and ground rovers). Today the Pixhawk autopilot runs a variety of powerful free and open UAV software systems, including:

  • PX4, a pro-quality copter, plane, rover and VTOL software stack from the Dronecode Foundation
  • ArduCopter, a fully-autonomous multicopter and heli UAV system
  • ArduPlane, a pro-level UAV system for planes of all types
  • ArduRover, 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

How to Set Up a CC3D Quadcopter for One-step Flips

Posted by Mac Johnson on June 28, 2017 at 2:00am 0 Comments

  I am new to drones and recently tried flips and rolls, and did it successfully with some tutorials help, so just share my experience here. Welcome to discuss and share your ideas here. The accessories links are attached at the end.

  OK, let’s go straight to the point – how to set up the CC3D quadcopter for flips and rolls. Follow my steps, you can get it too. I use a semi self-stabilization, here is how to do

Step 1: Set Mode…


RTK Rover and Base Configuration Web Interface

Posted by Dror on June 27, 2017 at 1:30pm 0 Comments

When I first started to mess around with RTKLIB I've wanted to have a nice UI to do that, while researching it I came across a product from which already has a nice UI and I was glad to find its an open source (!!).…


Tricopter tail boom linkage

Posted by Bob Morley on June 26, 2017 at 10:41am 0 Comments

Here's a better photo showing the tail boom linkage - basically a pair of printed gears.

This design has fewer parts than a conventional linkage, less things to break so hopefully more reliable.

There's a 2:1 gearing ratio between the servo and the tail boom. The servo moves +/- 60…


ArduPilot, PX4 dominate AUVSI drone competition

Posted by Chris Anderson on June 26, 2017 at 10:00am 8 Comments

When we got started ten years ago, the annual AUVSI student drone competition was dominated by commercial autopilots, such as Piccolo. Now it's almost entirely open source autopilots, led by ArduPilot (14 of top 20) and Dronecode/PX4 (3 of top twenty). I'm super proud of this having co-founded…


Tricopter assembly

Posted by Bob Morley on June 25, 2017 at 12:25pm 7 Comments

Dry assembly to make sure all parts fit, so far so good.

The distance between motors is 450mm so obviously the arms need to be cut down.

A PixFalcon goes on top, the GPS/Compass module will either go directly on top of the PixFalcon or have its own mount at the front of the drone.

Target weight…


Quadcopter ESC: Type, Firmware and Key parameters

Posted by Jack on June 25, 2017 at 7:32am 2 Comments

Before choosing the best esc for quadcopter or FPV, you should know some ESC knowledges (Type, Firmware and Key parameters) as below.

ESC type

A Brushed Motor has a rotating set of wound wire coils which acts as an electromagnet with two poles.

A Brushless Motor uses a permanent…



Posted by Bob Morley on June 24, 2017 at 8:44am 0 Comments

Printing almost complete 13 hours later.

Not sure about the 'lurid purple' colour, for some reason it was the only filament left at the shop.

This version doesn't have a camera gimbal, I want to see what the all up weight is without any 'extras' and have some fun flying it…


How to make a carbon fiber core balsa panel - tutorial - DIY

Posted by Hugues on June 24, 2017 at 6:26am 4 Comments

For RC/UAV uses, a balsa core laminated with carbon fiber makes an ultra light construction panel with very high stiffness. While you can buy ready made panels (usually expensive), this video shows how easily you can make it yourself with no special tools.

This video does not pretend to show the best way of doing these panels. It is…


Comparing Precision of Autopilots for Survey Missions - Pixhawk with ArduCopter firmware

Posted by Kristaps Brass on June 22, 2017 at 7:00am 5 Comments


We have reached the long-awaited episode in our autopilot precision series in which we finally test Pixhawk. All drones are tested by flying them on a simple photogrammetry route created in UgCS mission planning software. In this video Pixhawk was mounted on 3DR IRIS platform, the same…



Season Two of the Trust Time Trial (T3) Contest 
A list of all T3 contests is here. The current round, the Vertical Horizontal one, is here

UAV news from sUAS News

Ardupilot drone code wins innovation prize at The Drone World Conference, Shenzhen

Jani Hirvinen Jani Hirvinen, JDrones CEO received a 2017 Global UAV Innovation Award at the Drone World Conference, Shenzhen China last week on behalf of the Ardupilot project. Shenzhen is the heart of drone manufacture in China and this show the largest commercial drone show in China. Speaking to me via Skype this morning Jani called the […]

Sky Revolutions helps us understand drone surveying

sky revolutions Results of Drone Effectiveness Study show industry seeking support from commercial operators Many leading construction companies and Facilities Managers are reaping the rewards that come with drone surveying, but some are still seeking guidance on how drones help improve their business processes. So say the results of Sky Revolutions’ first interrogation of the market. Their […]

Live CQNet interactive demo to take place on sUAS News today

David Walters, the Software Development Manager for CQNet will be interviewed live on sUAS News today, Wednesday June 28 at 9 pm BST. CQNet is the proprietary software system for the unmanned technology solutions leader, Consortiq. It is the easiest, most efficient way to manage UAS operations. Walters will conduct a live demo and walkthrough […]

MMC: The Major Drone Manufacturer Driving 3 Industry Trends

MMC Chinese industrial drone manufacturer MMC has a view from the top of the drone industry. As it’s Shenzhen neighbour DJI has risen to market dominance in the recreational drone segment, MMC has achieved prominence in the commercial sector. With over 500% growth in the last few years, the company has sound funding, a global client […]

Solar Panel inspections with UgCS

Solar panels, like any other artificial infrastructure objects, require periodical inspections. UAV equipped with thermal camera is the best choice for inspection, as in most cases it saves costs compared to manned aviation and saves time compared to visual control with handheld IR camera. UgCS Usually, photovoltaic (PV) solar panel field inspection requires use of […]

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