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John Hestness's Groups

John Hestness's Discussions

Practical Experience with PID tuning

Started Jun 26, 2011 0 Replies

I am in the process of tuning an APM equipped Parkzone T-28.  I have tried the "Easystar default parameters" and found it just lackidaisically wandering around off course, and uncaring about its…Continue

Advice on using APM for ground vehicle?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Darren Mar 6, 2011. 10 Replies


DIYdrones search not working

Started this discussion. Last reply by Ken Jan 3, 2011. 2 Replies

It seems that the search function for the website is not working.Continue

Parkzone T-28 Trojan autopilot platform

Started this discussion. Last reply by Henk Jul 12, 2013. 7 Replies

I decided to use the Parkzone T-28 as the initial plane for my APM.  I picked it beacause it is a straight forward 4 channel foam plane that fits in my trunk assembled and it has a huge removable…Continue

Tags: Trojan, platform, Parkzone, T-28


John Hestness's Page

Latest Activity

John Hestness commented on Aym Altorra's blog post NASA's electric plane achieves vertical takeoff
"They better OK this with Colson first.  Just Saying. "
Aug 21
John Hestness commented on Bob's blog post Man Creates Flying Hexacopter Drone With 3Doodler 3D Printing Pen
"I think part of the pen process is art.  Like comparing a computer or a formula to Picasso or Michelangelo.  I can see both sides of this being exactly right.  Sometimes you feel like precision, sometimes you don't."
Aug 20
John Hestness replied to Bill Babcock's discussion 3DR radio and Samsung Galaxy Tablet
"It might have to do with whether the tablet has USB OTG (on the go) and this determines if it can supply power.  If I remember correctly. "
Aug 16
John Hestness commented on Jonathan Hair's blog post My 2 cents to the FAA
"Love the title and the picture. Good write up. Agree totally."
Jul 9
John Hestness commented on Mustafa TULU's blog post USA Trip Canceled
"I'm going to keep watching, Trent.  I am looking forward to a trip summary and lessons learned kind of show.  I am sure we can all learn valuable tips from your recent  experience. And most important, keep thinking big!"
Jun 17
John Hestness commented on Roger Sollenberger's blog post Follow-Me Mode: Available Today, Free in DroidPlanner 2.0
"Awesome.  Is this compatible with all versions of APM hardware?"
Jun 15
John Hestness commented on Chris Anderson's blog post IDEO-designed quadcopter with 3G wireless on Kickstarter
"To follow up on what Chris said, other than a new way to fold the frame, these guys are coming pretty close to being these guys - Crowdsourced 3D-Printed QR Code Live Streamed Via Go Pro To A Smart Phone Or Tablet Device Drone Delivery Ticket System…"
Jun 10
John Hestness commented on MHefny's blog post Zero-PIDs Tuner for Multirotors
"Hmm. Huh. Um, it sounds a little crazy to set your PID's to zero on the ground, much less in the air.  But that is what makes it interesting, isn't it?  I will not be able to try it myself, but I would definitely watch a video,…"
Jun 1
John Hestness commented on's blog post Just one word, son.... “plastics..” (future of Flite Test)
"I hope you are right and they keep producing FT.  Thanks for the update."
Jun 1
John Hestness commented on Chris Anderson's blog post Amazon Prime Air is hiring!
"I believe that you will have to preregister and purchase or rent a prime delivery receptacle unit before receiving any drone mail.  The receptacle unit will be sized to match the maximum payload of the drone and incorporate some kind(s) of…"
May 20
John Hestness commented on Stefan Gofferje's blog post Mythbusters, please help! (Open Letter)
"I am with Stefan on this.  Let a third party like Mythbusters do some destructive testing to find out what "really" could happen.  The more actual information that the law is based on the better.  Especially since most of us…"
May 10
John Hestness commented on Roger Sollenberger's blog post 3D Robotics engineering moves to their incredible new space this weekend
"it is somewhat bittersweet to see our exotic fringe hobby going mainstream.  But I wouldn't want to go back and give up the improvements in form, function, and reliability. It looks like a nice big building with room for a serious shipping…"
Apr 6
John Hestness commented on Chris Anderson's blog post Amazing quadcopter prop-loss recovery
"Amazing work."
Mar 5
John Hestness commented on Carlos Orozco's blog post RoboNurse
"So if the goal is just to have a demonstration at a science fair, and not an actual hospital ready robot, then your job is much easier.  One easy way to navigate for a demonstration is to do line-following, the line is just tape stuck to the…"
Mar 1
John Hestness commented on Jack Crossfire's blog post Electromagnetic position sensing
"It is a nice idea.  One possibility regarding the vehicle motor interference problem might be to reverse the system and put the magnetometers around the room and then measure the "interference" from the vehicle to determined its…"
Feb 26
John Hestness commented on UAVStuff's blog post Google gets into 3D mapping with Project Tango
"Gary,   lol,  I feel your pain.   I was planning to try a simple "point cloud" program with the $99 LRF that I got from lightware, but I fear that in the time it takes to get it working (a few days) their will be a $5.00…"
Feb 21

Profile Information

About Me:
I started building robots and control panels in grade school. Now I upgrade and maintain industrial control systems. I started flying RC about a year ago and I mentor in the FIRST robotics program.
Please tell us a bit about your UAV interest
I just finished assembling an APM. I want to try it in an airplane, helicopter, quadcopter, and a snow sled that I made last winter. I would like to automate my yard work and house work. Some day I want a light speed star ship, with an autopilot of course.
Minneapolis MN

 kludge "to improvise with a kludge or kludges" and kludgemanship "skill in designing or applying kludges".

A crock that works. 

An ill-assorted collection of poorly matching parts, forming a distressing whole.

Something that works for the wrong reason.

A kludge is often used to fix an unanticipated problem in an earlier kludge; this is essentially a kind of cruft.


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John Hestness's Blog

Airventure 2013

Posted on August 1, 2013 at 12:30pm 2 Comments

Interesting things I saw at the EAA Airventure event in Wisconsin this week.

Here is former GMA host David Hartman interviewing astronauts Chris Hadfield, Chris Ferguson, Charles Precourt, and Charles Duke.

Hadfield talked about space walking and his youtube video.  …


Lifehacker interview of Chris Anderson

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 9:23pm 20 Comments

Happen to run across this today.  Great interview and a look at the workshop!

Quick and Easy Rover

Posted on April 4, 2012 at 8:21pm 40 Comments

In between aircraft I built this rover.  It is a Traxxas Slash frame with a piece of 1/8" aircraft plywood on top for an electronics platform.  The plywood measures 16.5" x 6.5".  It was super easy to build.  In the next few days I will finish configuring the electronics, update and confirgure the software and test it out. …


Free AI class possibly has Drone applications

Posted on December 16, 2011 at 5:00pm 1 Comment

I am just finishing the Intro to Artificial Intelligence free on-line class from Stanford.  There are probably many helpful things in this wonderful class taught by Peter Norvig and Sebastian Thrun.  But I have to mention the Particle filter algorithm that can locate a vehicle in a previously mapped environment quickly and with minimal computation. …


Comment Wall (2 comments)

At 12:31pm on July 22, 2011, George Tarrant said…


Sorry if this is a stupid question but have you decided the missions you want your planes to perform? Its the missions that will dictate the PID loops you need.

If your question relates more to PID gain values, I'll need a dimensioned 3-view sketch of the plane to begin with.

At 4:37pm on July 22, 2011, John Hestness said…
George, I am using Ardupilot Mega. The mission is just to fly the plane to the waypoints, assuming wind of 0-12 MPH (0-19 KPH). My question is about the gains, and I have linked to a 3 view below. The wingspan is 44 inches (112 cm) AUW is 39 ounces (1.1 kg) Thank you, John

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