OK! After several days of testing, I've learned alot with only a couple minor catastrophes and ended with a whole quad still intact! =-).
Hardware 1.0, + config, 850 kv motors, 10x45 props, hyperion 3300 mAh 3s 35C lipo, Spektrum 6 ch TX/RX. No telemetry, No compass/sonar.
I started with ArduCopter NG 1.0 default to cut my teeth.
I loaded the code with success and minimal input. I used Configurator 1.2.2 to prepare the unit for first flight. Setup went without a hitch as the configurator is pretty comprehensive.
I FOLLOWED THE WIKI INSTRUCTIONS RELIGIOUSLY!!
I only had to make a couple of adjustments to leveling. note, the way to do this is to either increase or decrease the configurator pitch roll or yaw trim so that the sum of the trim and the value is equal to or close to zero. This was confusing to me as was the documentation until some trial and error light up my brainbulb.
Though sparse, most of the CLI commands worked. I found motors especially useful to confirm proper motor to controller assignments.
I could not communicate with the HK GCS or the Mission Planner nor could I log nor retrieve logged data.
The only way that I could fly was to use the Acro mode- that was tough but my Heli skills paid off and it was really fun to fly and responsive. The stab mode didnt work- it was almost like the unit was in x mode or some wires were crossed but after reading Jani's posts, it was a known issue. Since the code was dead I didnt complain, just took note and moved on.
My only problems came when during a 3 foot hover, the right motor suddenly died and the unit flipped on its top. Luckily I was above grass. Its possible that the motor mad a crackle sound before, but Im not sure and no video was shot at the time so i cant confirm.
Upon inspection, I could never find the culprit as the system ran fine when powered back up on the ground. Some minor damage to the motor mounts so I quickly fabbed some up of my own out of PC. SInce the motor was bolted with a steel screw, the wrong peices (motor mounts) broke. So that only the cheap bolts/screws break instead, I replaced all metal with M3x 25mm plastic bolts instead. Besides, they make a better/tighter (contrasting materials) fit with the Al motor holes. If you insist on using steel bolts, make sure to use split lock washers on flat washers with a bit of medium thread locker.I would cut the botls at the base of the head about 1/3 of the way through so they break during a crash- its a method that scale R/C guys use to save motors.
After the second unexplained right motor cut,my confidence in code 1.0 was shot and I finally moved on to the trunk ACM beta code.
In retrospect testing the unit out on a R/C heli test stand would be ideal to gain confidence in the code and to test out diff modes.
I'll update my experiences with that code in a future post. Happy flying and good luck!
"I could not communicate with the HK GCS or the Mission Planner nor could I log nor retrieve logged data."
because it's NG code, it does not support any groundstations other than the configurator
you can read logged data through CLI
Right, that makes sense. Note to all that read this post: I am in no way complaining for lack of features; rather I'm sharing my experience to support the progress of others.
Thanks for the write up.
It was helpful for me.
I'm still flipping my Quad using the Pirates code. But I just figured out the leveling trim. So we'll try again today.
How is the ACM Beta Code working? I hadn't yet figured out how to load it. I hate Arduino libraries. I have not figured out how to use them without dumping them all in the Arduino library directory. I have about 50% success in compiling -- I always get the can't find header files. I'm at the point where I just delete the Aurdino directory structure and start over with each new type of code.
The newest Ardupilot code loads great for a plane I use, not a quad. Although loading the binary prevents any custom configurations it sure is easy.
Again, thanks for your post.
I actually set my preferences in Arduino to the folder of the software I will use, say ArducopterNG. The folder must have botht the program folder and the libraries. Then I close and reopend Arduino. I open the code from the drop down menu and make any necessary edits to the headers files before saving and compiling. Then I upload without a problem.