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Randy's Groups

Randy's Discussions

Optical Flow discussion thread

Started this discussion. Last reply by paul riseborough 10 hours ago. 18 Replies

James T Qs re frames

Started this discussion. Last reply by Craig Sep 7. 2 Replies

Copter reliability vs functionality

Started this discussion. Last reply by Marco Robustini Jun 19. 204 Replies


Welcome, Randy!

Latest Activity

leonardthall replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Hi Dave, The log you provide doesn't appear to be from your crash. Can you please give us that log. "
16 minutes ago
Hubertus Paetow replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"I´m quite sure there is no problem with your esc. While the coopter descends all RCOUT channels are close to each other and the copter doesn´t flip. It follows the desired attitude quite well: I think there is something wrong with the…"
53 minutes ago

Randy commented on Chris Anderson's blog post APM support for ADS-B air-traffic control receiver now in beta
"Nice work on the integration Tom! I'm sure it's going to be really useful having a tiny little real-time ADS-B receiver on some vehicles."
3 hours ago
Craig replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Saw this over at RCG If you're running BLHeli and 14.2 then you need to upgrade to 14.3 "I've just read that 14.3 is out due to 14.2 having motor glitch…"
4 hours ago
Wilson Thong replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"you can try giving your ESC+motor extreme change of throttle input. if there is out-of-sync issue waiting to happen, these test should kick them right out! make sure you use your fight controller hardware to drive your ESC/motor speed. for making…"
5 hours ago
Greg Covey replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"I found Jakub's v072 firmware for APM and loaded it up without issue. It re-calibrated the on-board compass with the AHRS_ORIENTATION parameter set to Pitch90 and it seems to work well on my initial testing indoors. I miss having my telemetry…"
9 hours ago

paul riseborough replied to Randy's discussion Optical Flow discussion thread
"Goro, Thank you for your detailed post. I have added some additional information below: The issue in drift in EKF5.FIX and EKF5.FIY observed in some setups is due to sensor errors  that the EKF is unable to compensate for. I recommend anyone…"
10 hours ago
James Wright replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"Question about the antenna tracker - can you use continuous rotation (no feedback) servos, and can the tracker software support continuous rotation of the tracker its self (IE greater than 360 degrees?). I'm wondering if it uses the manometer…"
11 hours ago
Dave Wood replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"ok, thank you very much for the information. I will now first try to recreate the issue by full throttle individual motor tests, let's see how that ends.."
14 hours ago
Dave Wood replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"hey, you are of course right but it's really strange, that it flys fine and from one second to the other it just fails. I am also very new to the logging thing and just did basic checks before. Therefore I also don't know what to look…"
14 hours ago
Cala replied to Randy's discussion Optical Flow discussion thread
"Thank's Wes."
15 hours ago
Tony replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"First I highly,highly recommend BLHeli for those motors. Second yes you can recreate it if its an issue but not sure how since I have never had that problem and have always been using BLHeli  Never had to search it but I have heard that…"
15 hours ago

Hugues replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"Manual servo test are fine with the Pitch, it is only in Auto mode that it does not work. I have also configured the parameter that gives the minimum distance to begin tracking and have set it to one meter for my bench tests. Worse, Sometimes it…"
15 hours ago
Dave Wood replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"how can I reproduce this type of error? would you recommend BLHeli then? I first want to find out the issue of the crash before changing anything."
15 hours ago
Dave Wood replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Here is a log of the Copter flying perfectly fine! Had to rar it because otherwise it would be over 7mb. didn't have a smaller log with active GPS. Thanks for your efforts!"
15 hours ago
Goro Senzai replied to Randy's discussion Optical Flow discussion thread
"A big thank you goes out to Randy Mackay, Paul Riseborough, and other APM developers. They are the ones who've worked tirelessly to make this whole thing work and they've also been helping us troubleshoot in various forums.…"
15 hours ago

Profile Information

About Me:
Lead developer of ArduCopter. I coordinate releases, provide support for users having trouble with their copters, add new features (most often based on ideas and suggestions from the community). I also help others get their code integrated into ArduCopter.

You can find numerous video tutorials from me here:
Please tell us a bit about your UAV interest
Interested in quads and helis mostly. I got my start in this field by reading the electronics tutorials from Sparkfun and from watching the success of Jack Crossfire's vicacopter. I've learned an enormous amount from the combined wisdom of the people on the DIYDrones forums and members of the core dev team including Jason Short, Tridge, Doug Weibel, Leonard and many more.
Karuizawa, Japan

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Randy's Blog

Copter-3.3 released!

Posted on October 8, 2015 at 9:58pm 80 Comments

After months of testing by the beta-testing team and no significant issue during the soft release, Copter-3.3 has been released.  You can load this version onto your vehicle using the…


Copter-3.3 ready for wider use

Posted on September 28, 2015 at 7:18pm 82 Comments

After months of testing by the beta-testing team, Copter-3.3 is ready for wider use.  Similar to the Copter-3.2 release this is a "soft launch" meaning that for the next couple of weeks, we are asking users to load the new version using the Mission Planner's "Beta firmwares" link…


NAVIO+ Linux board with APM:Copter 3.3

Posted on June 3, 2015 at 12:00am 23 Comments

Click here to skip the commentary and just see the vehicle flying.

The video above shows my first attempt (which was successful) to fly APM:Copter using a Linux board (…


Multi-Vehicle testing with APM:Copter, Tracker and Mission Planner

Posted on May 3, 2015 at 8:21pm 33 Comments

For some tasks (like Search and Rescue and mapping) what you can do with one vehicle, you can probably do faster with multiple vehicles.  To test how well it works in practice I tested…


ArduCopter 3.2.1 released

Posted on February 11, 2015 at 1:00am 94 Comments

Warning: there was a period of about 12 hours after this blog was first posted where an older version (AC3.1.2) replaced AC3.2.1 for APM2.  If you think you may have downloaded for the APM2 during these initial period, please check the version on your board by looking at the title bar of the Mission Planner (see…


Comment Wall (29 comments)

At 8:44am on January 5, 2011, Jack said…


I have been working on my own Quad with the NG code and have setup the Sonar and have it working very well . I have an indoor version with sonar and IR sensors and would like to know were the IR sensors are conected, what pins. I see you were working on implementing this so If you could help with basic setup I can try my hand at testing. Thanks for your work on the Sonar and good luck on the obstical avoidence.


At 5:47am on January 30, 2011, Kári Davíðsson said…

Thanks Randy. 

I do not have write access to the svn repository.

So I will send you the changed AP_ADC lib probably later today.

I am not sure if a circular buffer is needed. The beauty of a 1st order IIR filter is that we only need one "old" sample and if a second order is needed only two old samples. But I will look a little better into the filter selection before committing anything to you.

At 5:45am on August 24, 2011, Jiro Hattori said…

Hi Randy

 One of the way to introduce technology of arduino as IMU is that something like what you have done. Most of the Japanese model flyer love to fly traditional helicopter. 

 Another approach may be exhibit something very unique at MAKE fair at Tokyo Institute of Technology.  There will be many open source hardware and software freaks as well.

At 9:10pm on March 7, 2012, Ravi said…

hi randy, i had been following your forum for align450. i just got my APM2 purple. i loaded the ardu heli firmware. everythings looks to be ok on mission planner. but there is no PWM on servo out pins. i armed the APM2 and does gets armed. the radio callibration bars move proportionately. evrything seems to be OK. but in 'status' there is no PWM on channel out pins. it shows '0' PWM on all out channels. can uou please suggets what might be the reason. the APM2 works fine with arduplane and arduquad firmware. ravi

At 5:53am on March 16, 2012,


I had a different problem with my APM2 that I was able to solve by following the procedure found in the wiki with a search for APM board problems.  My board would not connect to the planner and it works now.

Good luck


At 2:18pm on May 15, 2012, wilson javier madrid sossa said…

hello hello hug.
I can help with anything, I did several plannings flight with tri and firmware 2.0.49 and flew very well.
I did a quad and install 2.5.4 program a waypoint flight and the team took off like crazy.WP PIDs are by default and does not really move as you do. can you give me some information.

I appreciate your help

At 4:41pm on May 16, 2012, wilson javier madrid sossa said…

Please can you help me. I was flying my quadcopter and hold position when you turn the team went to ground. these are the last two log. I appreciateprompt help.


At 3:54pm on September 29, 2012, Marooned said…

Hi Randy

After your changes to Optical Flow I'm having troubles with compiling the sources:

ArduCopter.cpp: In function 'void init_ardupilot()':
ArduCopter.pde:-1: error: 'SPI3' was not declared in this scope
ArduCopter.pde:-1: error: 'SPI3_SPEED_2MHZ' was not declared in this scope

I have spi3.h file include in ArduCopter.pde but somehow it's not working that way. I did fetch&rebase with original repo.

At 3:12pm on September 30, 2012, Marooned said…

Sorry for troubles. It's working now. Looks like Arduino IDE had some hiccup.

I should probably move to some better IDE as I'm using Arduino only for compiling/uploading and all files are edited in my fav editor and I have to restart Arduino every time I change something as it doesn't follow outside files changes.

Anyway, sorry for bothering you.

At 6:30pm on December 1, 2012,
William Premerlani

Hi Randy,

Regarding a question that Shyam asked about gimbal lock when he was trying to use APM to stabilize a camera, he and I finally solved the issue. Here is a link.

No one on diydrones was able to help Shyam, he finally contacted me directly.

Best regards,

Bill Premerlani

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