Beginner looking for guidance

I stumbled onto this awesome site and couldn't believe what I had found. First I want to say keep up the great work here. Second I am new to RC planes (or other vehicles for that matter) and am so new I have not purchased a plane yet but might next month. Anyway I have always wanted to build a UAV not knowing a community like this existed until now. So I have been coming to this site and doing a lot of reading and research on how to build a UAV. So now I have a list of stuff, I will keep it simplified compared to my list, that I was hopping to get some opinions on and even had a few questions I would hope to find answers to.First this list of parts starting with the planes. Now I have never seen any of these in person so I have no idea how big they are or how much cockpit space they have other then looking at photos on google or something. The three choices seem to be...Dynam Hawk Sky, AXN Clouds Fly and the Multuplex Easy Star.I think my final choice is the Easy Star but I am going to do the Power Pack upgrade and the 2200mAh battery pack. Now that I have picked the platform to use I will show you what parts I hope to use in it.ArduPilotArduPilot Shield v2 KitEM-406 GPS ReceiverFMA Co-Pilot XY Sensor900MHz Aerial Video System W/ KX171 Video CameraRhino 460mAh Li-Po Battery PackQuestions I have...1) Will all of this fit into the Easy Star cockpit/fuselage? NOTE: I plan to put the camera as far into the nose as I can assuming it will fit. I want to put a lens/window on the bottom/tip of the plane and not have the lens of the camera protrude outside the plane.2) I noticed DIY sells an XYZ sensor package but I really like the FMA one. Is it possible to buy JUST a Z sensor by itself whether from DIY or other source?3) Im sure all of this is good but I just want to make sure from the pros, all of the ArduPilot stuff I have listed will work together fine right?4) Do I need to buy any extra cables, connectors, etc. to get all of this together and up and running?5) I am, like many, a huge fan of the Raptor/Predator planes. Is there a great quality Predator model that could be considered as a good UAV over the plane I have selected for this project? Something with all the room one would need maybe even more than usual in case some future upgrades were made.I cant wait to get started into this hobby. The RC plane I do end up getting will fulfill my urge to fly and to have an RC plane and this will fulfill the geek in me (im an IT guy) and allow me to tinker around and have an UAV.Thank you all in advance for any help you can give me in this and again keep up the great work here at DIY Drones.

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  • If you want, there's a website called, and they sell a special mount($35) called the EZ-Pod that goes on the Multiplex Easystar. It comes with everything you need to mount the KX-171 camera, as well as two servos for optional rotation.
  • 3D Robotics
    You're on the right track! Some answers:

    1) Yes

    2) No, we don't sell the Z by itself (they need to be a matched set). The 2.5 code gives you the option of just using the XY, but the field setup process is a little more complicated.

    3) Yes, but I think you'll be happier with the uBlox GPS and adapter.

    4) There is a page, right in the tabs above, that gives you a list of everything you need.

    5) Once you're got an EasyStar UAV running well, and you've become a good pilot, you might be ready to take on the Nitroplanes Predator. But it's a hassle to get the equipment in that small space, and it's a bear to fly. You'll probably crash it pretty quickly (I've been through two) and regret the time you spend in systems integration. It looks better than it flies.
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