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Randy's Discussions

figuring out the Antenna Tracker

Started this discussion. Last reply by Josh Welsh Dec 13. 61 Replies

ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing

Started this discussion. Last reply by Andy Lee Robinson on Thursday. 3590 Replies


Welcome, Randy!

Latest Activity

Ian commented on Randy's blog post ArduCopter 3.2 Released
"Awesome thanks. I am waiting for a pixhawk, then trying to figure out if that should go into the trad-heli or my older APM2 and putting the Pixhawk on a multicopter. One more quick question if thats ok. Do you know if its more advantageous to put…"
22 minutes ago

Randy commented on Randy's blog post ArduCopter 3.2 Released
"@Ian, The TradHeli is still supported on the APM2.  The wording that confuses people is that sonar on a TradHeli using the APM2 is no longer supported.  I.e. APM2+TradHeli+Sonar = doesn't work.  APM2+TradHeli = ok."
1 hour ago

Randy commented on Víctor Mayoral's blog post Erle-brain, an open hardware Linux autopilot
"Nicely done Victor.  Your contributions to get ArduCopter running on Linux have been huge.  Best of luck with your product.  Certainly Linux autopilots are the future."
4 hours ago

Randy commented on Rob_Lefebvre's blog post Sony Releases Stand-Alone Imager
"Tridge has played around with interfacing to these cameras.  They've got a very easy to use wifi interface it seems.  it uses JSON.  The problem is pulling the image off the camera takes about 2 seconds because the wifi is…"
7 hours ago

Randy commented on Bertrand Duchiron's blog post Cheap (around 350$) FLIR dev kit for Arduino
"I saw this as well on Sparkfun and was quite interested in it.  The nice thing is the integration with a companion computer (RPi) looks very straight forward. I think Tridge (Plane) is working integrating a higher-end FLIR camera for use with a…"
8 hours ago

leonardthall replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"Hi DG, Good to hear mate! Have a good Christmas!"
10 hours ago
DG replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"I took it out today, redid AT, plugged in your numbers and viola! It's a beautiful thing. After being confident the settings were correct, I took her back up and did some open throttle flying in stab. Holy smokes these motors have some…"
10 hours ago
Stuart Brookes replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"re you garbled CLI, compass mot is part of optional hardware checks now"
18 hours ago
Edgar Scott replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"Leanoard, I did a re-calibrate and it did seemed to help a little I would like to to a compassmot but terminal is not working with 3.2/APM 2.6 (garbled data), i know you guys had to move the logs to the tabs, was compussmot moved too?  If…"
19 hours ago
Ian commented on Randy's blog post ArduCopter 3.2 Released
"Sorry if I missed it, but is traditional-heli removed from APM 2.6 boards entirely? Will I need a pixhawk?"
Erwin Quilloy commented on Randy's blog post ArduCopter 3.2 Released
"Flew again my aphid quad f450 with AC 3.2, everything seems to be fine today. I had a battery failsafe on one of my flights, which, triggered auto landing. But because I had a bad experience with auto landing on failsafe before, I immediately…"

leonardthall replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"That check box should be left unchecked because mission planner will try to change the role and pitch Pids to be the same. Autotuned sets each differently based on your airframe so it is very difficult to get the same settings for both after auto…"

leonardthall replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"Hi DG, The loiter P and the rate loiter P and I terms are the ones you need. So start with Loiter P 0.5, Rate loiter P and I 0.5 and 0.25. As for yaw rate IMax, just double it."
DG replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"Leonard,   I must plead ignorance again. I see the Loiter PID's at the top which should be changed to .5 correct?. What is "velocity and position PID's" and what's a good starting point to change them to? How much…"

leonardthall replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"You can gust drop the loiter Pids by 50% to reduce the loiter twitch problem. It is a tradeoff between how aggressively it holds position and how accurately it holds position. Just make sure you drop both the position and velocity Pids."
DG replied to Randy's discussion AC-3.1 autotune support discussion
"Thanks Leonard for all your help and patience. The "twitching" only occurs in Loiter mode. In Stabilize it does not exist, so I conclude it is likely just a bit oversensitive when adjusting to wind conditions so not a big deal. Is that a…"

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

ArduCopter 3.2 Released

Posted on November 24, 2014 at 8:56pm 185 Comments

ArduCopter 3.2 (aka APM:Copter) has been released as the default version replacing AC3.1.5. This is the exact same version that we invited all users to test two weeks ago.  Users who wish continue using AC3.1.5 can find it under the "Pick…


ArduCopter 3.2 ready for wider use

Posted on November 7, 2014 at 2:18am 197 Comments

After months of testing, ArduCopter 3.2 (aka APM:Copter) is ready for widespread use and we invite all users to give it a try.  In order to manage the support load at first it will be available only through the Mission Planner and APM Planner2's Beta Firmwares link.  This link is visible from the regular "Install Firmware" page if you check…


Red Balloon Finder

Posted on June 17, 2014 at 5:04am 37 Comments

As many probably know, this year's Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition (AVC) is similar to last year's except that a new challenge has…


GPS Glitch detection in AC3.1

Posted on December 14, 2013 at 6:42am 32 Comments

AC3.1 is going out very soon and includes a new safety feature called GPS glitch detection.  There's a wiki page about it but I'd like to highlight how it works because it's near the top of the list of safety issues.  The method…


Dropping a Rover from Hexacopter - Part III

Posted on August 22, 2013 at 7:40pm 32 Comments

As a follow-up to the rover drops #1 and #2 I spent a day with Assistant Professor Nagatani-san of…


Comment Wall (25 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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