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Randy's Groups

Randy's Discussions

Copter reliability vs functionality

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

Copter-3.3 beta testing

Started this discussion. Last reply by Randy Bachtell 12 minutes ago. 1863 Replies

ArduCopter-3.2.1 Beta Testing

Started this discussion. Last reply by CARLOS EDUARDO BOLOGNESE on Monday. 584 Replies


Welcome, Randy!

Latest Activity

Randy Bachtell replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Auto tune fly-off, RC7.  I just completed a 960 hex build and the first flights went very well with default PIDs.  I flew Stab, Loiter, and Alt Hold modes as well as Land and RTL with very smooth flight and great response with landing gear…"
12 minutes ago
Andy Piper replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Someone else's VIBE messages looked very different mine, here are mine: Z seems awfully high, and yet I don't see unusual vibrations on the IMU in the Z-axis and it flies fine. No clipping. Is this normal?"
20 minutes ago
SpeedyHulk replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Hi, is it okay to use the autotune values for pitch and roll in arducopter 3.2.1?  which parameter changes the new autotune?"
41 minutes ago
Andy Piper replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Hi Randy, I redid the ESC calibration and it works fine! Thanks for staying with me on this and sorry I did not think to redo the ESC calibration earlier."
1 hour ago
Geert Pirens replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"I use the Samsung EVO 8gb microSDHC UHS-1 for bought it for 9 Euro. It work on Pixhawk and AUAV-X2."
1 hour ago
Roger Boulanger replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"I completed Yaw autotune successfully then tried some flight modes. RTL doesn't seem to work on my quad (rc7). I had manually maneuvered the quad to about 8 or 10 meters from launch point and tried RTL, twice, going back to Loiter between…"
2 hours ago
Doug Walmsley replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Thanks Rob.  I will looking a better performing micro-card. "
3 hours ago
Richard Smith replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Anyone else having this problem? "
3 hours ago

Rob_Lefebvre replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Doug, this could be caused by your Dataflash microSD card not being able to keep up with the data rate.  For rc7, the dataflash rate has been increased to 400Hz, so we can gather more data on the EKF performance. This should be no problem for…"
5 hours ago

Rob_Lefebvre replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Yes, the way this works basically, is that there's some logic which handles the landing gear, which is looking at the state of an internal switch, as well as a few auto-modes, such as RTL, etc.  That internal switch is manually controlled…"
5 hours ago
Doug Walmsley replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"This is related to vibration testing."
6 hours ago
Craig replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"I normally connect mine to a FTDI adapter and then use U-Center to make any changes then save it. You used to be able to press some keys in Mission Planner that would set up a passthrough which will allow you to connect via U-Center as well, but I…"
7 hours ago
Paul Atkin replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"How do you do that? I mean, if GPS unit only has a single jack to connect to serial port on a PX4 - do you connect that directly to PC? What software then is used to adjust that?"
7 hours ago
Mike replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Thank you both for the information. My failing was being in the OpenTx paradigm as I was searching for a way to define which of the two input choices went with which of the four possible outputs. Happily I didn't need to worry as the firmware…"
7 hours ago
Craig replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"What GPS is it? I have tons of Data drops on m8n units that are set to 5Hz. When I lower to 2Hz they go away."
7 hours ago
Doug Walmsley replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Randy, Flew my Y6B last evening just prior to a squall coming through the area.  Test was mostly in PosHold and Loiter to evaluate GPS accuracy and RC7.  Flight went well at low altitude so I pushed it up to 100-150ft and hovered her in…"
8 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

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 24 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 83 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…


Steps towards S&R in Japan

Posted on December 22, 2014 at 6:30pm 8 Comments

We seem to have a lot of natural disasters here in Japan (eruptions, mud slides, earthquakes) and like everywhere else we are counting on UAVs to…


ArduCopter 3.2 Released

Posted on November 24, 2014 at 8:56pm 242 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…


Comment Wall (27 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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