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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 Henri 2 hours ago. 2568 Replies

ArduCopter-3.2.1 Beta Testing

Started this discussion. Last reply by Johann Bruwer Jul 22. 585 Replies


Welcome, Randy!

Latest Activity

Randy commented on Gary Mortimer's blog post T3 Back to the Future
"If you added another week, I might try another attempt with my IRIS. I have been thinking of giving it a go with the Bebop but it's so small that if something went wrong I'd have zero chance of finding it."
37 minutes ago

Randy replied to Jan Overby's discussion Pixhawk crash, I would appreciate some help to analyze log
"Looks like a mechanical failure of motor #1 (front right).  It's got the classic signs of this: 1. the vehicle is doing fine, maintaining desired roll and pitch and then the action vs desired suddenly separate. 2. It tilts forward right…"
1 hour ago
Henri replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"@Paul  I'm sure you know about these very economical LDO: They are superior in many ways to any switchers and the famous 7805. They'll give you excellent line (0.015%)  and load…"
2 hours ago
Andrew Bennett replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"Huge thanks!  I'll check it out with my students as quick as I can! "
7 hours ago
Jakub Oller replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"After some investigation it turned out, that !nav_status.manual_control_pitch doesn't return 1 anymore and that caused the problem. It is now fixed. I may have broken something in manual operation but I can't test this mode since I…"
8 hours ago
Jakub Oller replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"It depends on what type of servos you use. With official firmware and classic servos I don't think you can do this. With CR servos you can simply limit RC_MIN/MAX values.  Max servo speed (based on angular velocity) is on my todo list."
9 hours ago
Yakup HELVACI replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Hello, Is this negative readings are ok in flight? "
9 hours ago
Jakub Oller replied to Randy's discussion figuring out the Antenna Tracker
"I tested 0.7.1 firmware today and pitch indeed doesn't work. I set up a simulation environment (as simple as following a howto on and PITCH stays at +45 degrees (my fork). On official 0.7.1 it will most likely stay at 0 degrees.…"
10 hours ago
Artem replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Yes, the original CUAV pixhack has aluminum shell and the silicon padding inside was specifically designed to dampen high frequency vibes. The plastic case version appears to be not made as good as the aluminum and the silicon pad is harder and is…"
12 hours ago
Igor replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Artem, I think it would be nice if you give us a brief summary of the conversation in english. As I (maybe false) understood there are two versions of Pixhack, one seems to be good an the other one has the vibes?"
14 hours ago
Craig replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"2+ years ago when we first saw a dude turn his dead cat into a quad most of us were appalled, but it started a whole genra of frames and frame conversions. Whilst I find it in poor taste I don't find it any more odd then someone taking their…"
14 hours ago
Scott W replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"People (governments) are using drones to slaughter entire villages, so the cat thing is really nothing..  God and Drones have nothing to do w/ each other.  (I wouldn't do that to my dead pet, but there are all sorts of people in this…"
15 hours ago
Kalle Karlsson replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Dear Reader I don't really know where to post this question and if wrongly posted I hope a civilized moderator will transfer it to its correct place. Thank you. Now to my question: As impressed as most people are by fascinating radio-controlled…"
15 hours ago
Artem replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Насколько я вижу у тебя в пластиковом корпусе - это не оригинал. Там силикон намного жесче чем в оригинале. + IMU2 сам посебе немного геморой, но это отдельная история, он резонирует на других частотах чем первый. Загрузки 3.2.1 и попробуй полетать?…"
15 hours ago

Bill Bonney replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"APM planner 2.0.18 supports the AC3.3 params."
16 hours ago

Randy replied to Randy's discussion Copter-3.3 beta testing
"Yes, the the fast flashing green LED is a good thing.  It means the GPS has SBAS so it's precision should be better.  We will definitely add this to the LED description wiki page before the official release.  Sorry for missing…"
16 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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