Hi,

I've been following the ArduCopter project for a while now, and have decided to give it a go. Over the last few days I've been reading up on as many details as possible, and would like to run the results by the community, to find out if I'm making the right choices.
Goals:
- A nice balance between agility and lift. I do not plan to lift heavy camera equipment, but would like to add some gadgets or a tiny video camera later.
- As responsive as possible
- Flight times are important; the longer the better. I don't really know what to expect yet, based on my choice of parts.
- Addition of GPS/magnetometer to enable real UAV behavior

So, the various choices:

Frame
I'll either go with the ArduCopter frame when it's out of beta, or I will buy Jakub_J's frame ( http://www.kkmulticopter.com/index.php/airframes/44-kkquadrocopter-... ). 
If the ArduCopter frame is done soonish and priced right, I'll get that.

TX/RX
The Turnigy 9X 9Ch. It's a guess in terms of quality control, but there's no beating the price. I'll order it as soon as HobbyKing has it back in stock.

Engines and props
Now the hard part starts. I'm following Old_Man_Mike's thread on quad motors over on rcgroups (http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1006721 ) - according to his research, the KDA20-22L (KDA) and DT-750 (HexTronik) have the best performance ratios. I'll be using these with - probably - EPP1045 props.

ESC
No idea yet. It seems the Turnigy Basic 18A is the best choice, but I haven't done enough research on ESC's yet. [Update: I mentioned the Turnigy Basic 18A, but should have referred to the Turnigy Plush 30.]

Battery
I'm looking for great weight to power ratio. I'm thinking 4000mAh+, but those weigh up to 400-500g. Also see open questions :)


Open questions

- Does this shopping list give me something satisfying my goals?
- What is the best battery to choose for the longest battery life/agility combination? Will I burn the engines if I use a 4000mAh+ 4S?
- How will the ArduCopter frame compare to the Jakub_J frame? Will it be worth the wait?

Very much looking forward to your insights, and hoping I'm not making any too obvious mistakes :)

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According to Jakub it's a "motor saver" - I'll see if I will use them :)
Unfortunately no, OilPan only has +5V output for I2C bus and also I2C bus is using +5V signaling so you cannot connect this magneto breakboard directly. Yes it is same magneto what DIY is also using but on DIY board you have voltage and bidirectional level shifter.

Also there has been some issues with this Sparkfun magneto, you might need to install bigger capasitor to get it working properly.

If you are skilled on soldering, there are possibilities to solder this magneto on OilPan's internal level shifted bus, where and how easy task that is. I cannot tell due have not checked schematics for this issue enough.

There are 2 3.3 volt regulators on OilPan that are used internally so you might be able to use one of these and also few devices are using I2C bus with 3.3v levels. You just need to find correct pins unless you can get level shifter. Sparkfun shifter does not work due it's not bidirectional. DIY store had one shifter hat works but don't i know their status on stock.

Anyways, don't worry you don't loose anything on software due we are not yet using magneto fully in it.
Thanks!
I'll go for the 4000mAh 3S Zippy pack (http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewItem.asp?idProduct=...) and the Turnigy Plush 25 (25-35) as soon as they're back in stock.
Woops - I should have done my research a bit better.. Ah well :) I'll find the regulated 3.3 on the oilpan, and will connect it that way - my project just got a 'phase 2' :)
According to Jordi this one should work with your magneto:
http://store.diydrones.com/I2C_SMBus_Voltage_Traslator_I2C_Level_Sh...

One of my followers uses it with success:
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showpost.php?p=16080909&postcoun...
All is not lost. Thanks!

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