Hi there, my Arducopter/APM2 build has been coming along nicely and I think I am almost at the finish line. I am working on configuring my ESCs and am having a problem with one of my motors. I was able to configure my ESCs using automatic (I think) and when I plug in the LiPo all the ESCs beep rapidly for a while and then eventually, one by one, stop beeping and am able to arm the motors and make the rotors turn. If I arm while one ESC is still beeping that motor will not work, that was expected for me.
However, my issue is that even when all ESCs are silent and I have armed the motors (red light solid), I throttle up and all the motors move except for when. It makes the very anemic attempt at spinning and spins back and worth very little (maybe about 60 or 80 degrees in each direction) until what I assume is the ESC cutoff kicks in and it stops moving all together. All of this is happening while the other 3 motors are spinning fine and responding to throttle. When I stop the motors the one that isn't working is hot to the touch, much warmer than the other 3 motors that were actually spinning.
I know it isn't the binding issue with the 880kv's because I have widened my holes significantly before I ever even ran the motors.
Could it be that the motor is toasted? How could that have happened? Will configuring the ESCs individually help me? I can provide more info, or video of the partial spinning if need be. Somebody please help me, I'M SO CLOSE!!
Very simple, you are "single phasing" the bad motor. They are 3 phase motors, and the ESC senses via back emf where the motor is in rotation. One of the bullet connectors or wires to the motor is not making connection.The ESC attempts to run the motor, but senses the problem and shuts down. Again, this is a motor to ESC problem. We know 2 wires are good, it gets hot so there must be a path, but the third wire is broken.
Could be the wire in the motor, the bullet or at a rare case, the ESC, but being you upgraded the motors (that what it sounds like you did), then either the motor is bad or the bullet soldering job was bad. You can disconnect the wires and ohm out. They should all short to each other. If one is open, then that's the bad wire. In other words, there are 3 wires and any combination should be very low resistance (the motor is only a couple of turn of heavy wire).
Like I said, disconnect all three wires so you are only testing the motor with the multimeter. Set it to Ohms or diode test (normally they beep) short the two test leads to verify the meter shows very low ohms or beep, then test any two wires at the motor, and then test the other combination of the motor wires. They should say dead short, but since we know we have a problem, one should show open (infinite resistance).
Wow, thank you! That worked perfectly. The motor end of the cord had become disconnected. Thanks for your help! Now for some reason two of be ESCs won't stop beeping and arm. The one that had the broken motor is fine as is another one. The 2 clockwise motors ESCs do the quick beeping and the motors won't come on. I have tried calibrating a couple times but the same two continue to beep. Do you know what this could be?
Beeping always indicates no signal from the APM. So logical guess is wiring issues on the ESC input side. Otherwise, the other option is the APM is not booting or the code is wrong and just not outputing PWM. Either way, should take much to figure out. You did just mess with the wiring so likely bumped something.
Hmmm, they definitely worked before the first time I had it going, that's why I didn't think it was wiring. You're right though I could have easily bumped something. I'll have to take it apart tomorrow and recheck my cables. Thanks again for your help, I'm very to new all this but I'm having fun!
I went down to the PDB to look for problems, reconnected everything but didn't really see any problems. I have tried automatic calibration a few times and since I took it apart and it seems to work for all four motors and they all move in sync. But then when I power cycle it I just get beeps, now from all four ESCs. Going to try manual calibration next, any other ideas?
If all 4 beep then the APM is not booting or has the wrong code on it. Try reflashing the firmware via mission planner
All 4 beep sometimes, but usually it is only 3. I reflashed the Quadro firmware as well as cleared my EEPROM and re did the first time setup config. Then I did manual calibration for each of the ESCs but to no avail.
When I do an auto calibrate all 4 motors work properly but then after the power cycle they go back to not working at all. Would this still happen if there was a bad wire somewhere? Going to keep looking into the connections on the PDB. Would it be better to connect the ESCs directly to the APM2? I'm really at a loss for else to try...
I have been tinkering with it a bit more and it seems that every time I plug in the LiPo the ESCs make the musical tone followed by two beeps noise as if they are entering calibration mode. Is this possibly the problem?
Yes, what ESCs are you using (sorry if you said this before)?
It's highly possible your ESCs cannot accept the output rate of the APM. There is a setting to adjust this, but I think you must use Arduino to edit the firmware and then flash it. Thus, meaning you cannot just adjust it through mission planner as this is a root firmware function.