Tom Mahood
  • Irvine, CA
  • United States
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A caution to those upgrading a tricopter to 3.3

Started this discussion. Last reply by Phil Mar 26. 1 Reply

I just upgraded my tricopter from 3.2.1 to 3.3 and got bit by the reversed servo bug. As those of you with tricopters know, there has been a variable called RC7_REV which you can use to ensure the…Continue

Any smaller alternatives to the stock Pixhawk buzzer?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Tom Mahood Sep 17, 2014. 2 Replies

I'm interested in replacing the stock Pixhawk piezo buzzer with something smaller but after a lot of time looking, I can't seem to find any specs on it. The schematics on the Pixhawk.org website show…Continue

Need advice for imaging a steep ridgeline

Started this discussion. Last reply by Tom Mahood Aug 7, 2014. 9 Replies

I'm interested in imaging a possible archaeological site located along the spine of a fairly steep descending ridgeline and am looking for advice on how to approach the imaging. At the very least I'd…Continue

Any good GPS cameras lighter than a Canon SX230 HS?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Tom Mahood Apr 11, 2014. 4 Replies

I've been using a Canon SX230 HS on multicopters for mapping and vertical imaging. I think it does a great job and takes fantastic pictures....but it's heavy! At 220 grams it seriously shortens…Continue

 

Tom Mahood's Page

Latest Activity

Tom Mahood commented on Ryan Vu's blog post INF Jupiter JM-1 Flight Controller
"Any compelling reasons why this would be superior to a Pixhawk at three times the cost with lesser waypoint capability? The lack of tricopter support also seems to negate the claim, "Total solution for all multicopter platforms"."
Thursday
Tom Mahood commented on Daniel McKinnon's blog post Navigating the byzantine FAA Part 107 exam registration process
"@Nikola: The circular you link to really is applicable only to manned aircraft and pertains to what sort of license and equipment is required for various uses. For drones, multiple classes of licenses don't exist (yet!). My understanding is…"
Aug 23
Tom Mahood commented on Daniel McKinnon's blog post Navigating the byzantine FAA Part 107 exam registration process
"Byzantine? Umm....You just make a phone call. You think that's worse than the EIT or PE process? Yeah, I know, it ain't all Internety, but it does involve the FAA, so that's to be expected. And you perhaps haven't realized the…"
Aug 22
Tom Mahood commented on Enterprise Drone Solutions's blog post Enterprise Drone Solutions announces Théa: the world’s first UAS to meet the high standards for an ​FAA Airworthiness Certificate
"Am I just hung up on semantics or is "...the world’s first UAS to meet the high standards for an ​FAA Airworthiness Certificate" not the same thing as actually having been awarded an AC by the FAA? Is thing just very careful (and…"
Jul 27
Tom Mahood commented on Gary Mortimer's blog post USA Simple Commercial Flight Rules land in 60 days time
"The FAA written test for Private Pilots costs between $85 and $150, depending upon which of the many testing centers it's taken at. I'd expect the UAS test to cost the same, or less."
Jun 21
Tom Mahood replied to Charles Linquist's discussion Intentionally shutting off motors in mid-flight then recovery
"There is a new APM flight mode called "Throw Mode" being developed. When/if released, it may do what you need, but I'm not sure. You can see a video demonstrating it here."
Apr 17
Phil replied to Tom Mahood's discussion A caution to those upgrading a tricopter to 3.3
"Hi Tom did you manage to get a locked in feel with 3.3, if so would you mind sharing your findings? Have the same issue, its soft and wagging Cheers Phil "
Mar 26
Tom Mahood replied to Shakunt Tambe's discussion MinimOSD dissapears
"When this happens it's almost always a problem with the grounding of the Minim and video camera, usually a floating ground. As you increase the throttle the voltage sags a bit and the relative video voltages presented to the Minim drift just…"
Mar 22
Tom Mahood commented on Katrina Rosen's blog post Footage over Area 51
"I was inclined to dismiss this until I had a close look at where he sent his drone up (I am familiar with the area and worked it out on Google Earth). He clearly knew his airspace and it was actually well thought out (setting aside the concept of…"
Mar 16
Tom Mahood replied to Joel's discussion A few questions before my first flight.
"As long as the RC RX's wire antennas don't get into the rotors they should be fine. Theoretically you should be able to use different ESCs for the motors and be OK. The APM will keep changing whatever command it's sending to a motor…"
Mar 10
Tom Mahood commented on elad orbach's blog post Autonomous search-and-rescue drones outperform humans at navigating forest trails
"Oh great. Now our future drone overlords will be able to hunt us down in the forest. This probably seemed like a great idea at the time...."
Mar 4
Tom Mahood commented on Thomas J Coyle III's blog post US Forest Service Clarifies Drone Use
"I'm not sure where the original article got the USFS info from because they just source the main USFS webpage and not any specific press release. Anyway, the USFS has had that info out, and in even more detail for a while and can be viewed…"
Feb 14
Tom Mahood posted a discussion

A caution to those upgrading a tricopter to 3.3

I just upgraded my tricopter from 3.2.1 to 3.3 and got bit by the reversed servo bug. As those of you with tricopters know, there has been a variable called RC7_REV which you can use to ensure the APM/Pixhawk moves the tail servo in the correct direction. It default loads as +1, but I've often had to change it to -1. I know to do this because the tricopter spins wildly out of control as soon as it lifts off.I knew 3.3 introduced a new variable called MOT_YAW_SV_REV to replace the reversing done…See More
Oct 18, 2015
EngineerX commented on Tom Mahood's blog post A public display of irresponsibility by a major newspaper
"Worst case scenario: if you hit someone at the right spot, even with a not-so heavy object, sure they could get killed. I believe hockey puck and baseball ball collisions with humans have resulted in fatalities. A 250mm miniquad could weigh up to…"
Sep 3, 2015
Scott W commented on Tom Mahood's blog post A public display of irresponsibility by a major newspaper
"@darrell, Actually, in their real test w/ flying drones, the consumer plastic camera drone didn't hurt anything.  Only a custom built monster x6 with a huge weight attached to it and carbon fiber props cut into things.  My copter w/…"
Aug 27, 2015
JoeBob commented on Tom Mahood's blog post A public display of irresponsibility by a major newspaper
"I saw quite a few that had to be well over 400 feet.  Especially if he used a standard lens.  Anybody see any wide angle distortion?"
Aug 27, 2015

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Tom Mahood's Blog

A public display of irresponsibility by a major newspaper

Posted on August 21, 2015 at 6:54pm 22 Comments

The Orange County Register has just published a slide show of  50 aerial shots taken over Orange County, California from an unspecified quadcopter. While they are beautiful and very nicely done, quite a few are counter to FAA guidelines. Some are just downright boneheaded (Flying over freeways? Really??).

There are a number of…

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Personal Drones May Present Public Safety Concerns

Posted on August 29, 2013 at 10:30pm 9 Comments

...Or so says the Joint Regional Intelligence Center. JRIC is yet another anti-terrorist agency most people have never heard of and is comprised of the Feds and law enforcement agencies in the counties of Southern California. The following single page…

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A composite folding H-quad

Posted on August 21, 2013 at 12:40pm 18 Comments

I've just wrapped up a new design based upon a lot of ideas I stole found on this site.…

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Comment Wall (1 comment)

At 7:14pm on December 12, 2013, Dennis Okeefe said…

this is cool.  i was looking for how to import .kmz files into mission planner and saw your post about exporting them.  i immediately realized who you were since i am a big fan of yours - black world stuff you have posted.  are you new to this "hobby"?   it would be a useful tool for "research".  anyway, do you know if you can import data directly from google earth into mission planner?  

timmy

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