Critique my FIRST Quadcopter build!! Plan on FPV!

Hi there everyone! Fresh meat here looking for some feedback!I would like to start a quadcopter build in the hopes of having a stable FPV platform down the road. Unfortunately, I am no expert, and really have no idea if what I am planning on purchasing is appropriate for my build or even any good to start with. I would appreciate it if you veterans could assist me in setting up my shopping cart.TransmitterTurnigy 9X 9Ch Transmitter w/ Module & 8ch Receiver $53.79 9X8C-V2 8 ch Receiver *included* Quadcopter Frame V1 $14.99 PCBPARIS - MultiWiiCopter aerial photography board - v3.0 naked $14.95® Pro Mini 328 - 5V/16MHz $21.95 GyroMotionPlus for Wii Remote (White) $14.37 AccelerometerBosch BMA180 Breakout $27.95 SensorSparkFun BMP085 Breakout $19.95 ConverterLLC Logic Level Converter Breakout $2.95 InterfaceUSB -> FTDi - 5V $19.95 King 20A ESC 3A UBEC $9.61 ???Propellers ???As you can see, motors, props, and even ESCs are an unknown to me. I want this quad to have sufficiently long flight time when fully loaded with FPV equipment (on the order of 15 mins or more). I would also appreciate the ability to have strong "elevator" performance and lateral travel speed. My gut tells me, get the biggest motors and biggest battery packs on the lightest frame possible and I might succeed in my goals. Then again, why do i not see everyone else doing this? I am sure there is a cross over point where things become too heavy to perform well and maintain sufficient flight time.The multiwii platform appears to be a winner with great community support. I plan to solder everything myself in hopes of saving 40 or so bucks. I realize this thing is going to cost about 400 dollars pre-FPV, but if possible I would like to shave some more cost by purchasing inexpensive and proven components.Would the Quadrino board better suit my needs?I would like to also incorporate a magnet/position hold system, GPS and OSD down the road, but I want to ensure my platform is robust and will withstand the test of time with the least amount of dollars spent :) (wishful thinking perhaps?)Excuse my RC FPV UAV language, I have only thoroughly been researching this hobby for about 4 days.Perhaps you guys/gals can direct me in building this first RC FPV quadcopter. All feedback is much appreciated!Thanks,Chris

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  • Hi,

    I have the same stuff but confused what to do know. My knowledge is insufficient..could someone here help me??


  • Really the APM & IMU is what ur gonna want to use.  Keep your air frame strong and light weight.  I used foam and CF arrow shafts.  I'm using 2822-1400kv motors w/ 9x5 props and 1 4400mha 11.1v 3s battery.  Flying weight without FPV is 980 grams.  Flight time 10 min.  With FPV flight time is 8 min. @ 1120 grams.  I think my motors are kinda small but nothing runs hot and it has great preformance.  I think just about everyone here wants to do what ur wanting to do including my self.  Take your time, spend  $ on what works, and stay on the leading edge.    BTW the HK frame is light weight but brakes very easly. 
  • Thanks for the response! I am still trying to get used to this blog/forum interface that's you have going on here.


    I thought the MultiWii setup had a proven backbone in the FPV copter world, and is designed to work with all the sensors I listed above. My component list above would build a microcontroller identical to the Paris V3 Aerial Photography microcontroller already offered as an assembled kit from the website. Additionally, I would start with some comparable size and weight frame pre-progs to load onto the device.


    Its not that $40 will make or break this hobby for me, but its $40 worth of LABOR that i would rather save and spend on a tangible good (RX/TX, goggles etc...) necessary to get my FPV setup up and flying. My high tech tank planted aquarium has cost me several thousands already, so I am used to having expensive hobbies. Fortunately, I currently have the means to afford partaking in them, that is, until I get married and have children. :)


    Since my intent is FPV, i somewhat concluded Hobby King's offering is too limited to provide for future growth of my system. I have been recently redirected to the OpenPilot Copter Controller platform. Seems to be higher power, very open source, smaller PCB, and more stoutly built (no breakout boards etc...).


    Any tips on motor/esc/prop configurations?

  • Developer

    My thoughts are you have a long road ahead on integration and debugging. You'll need to a lot of code dev too. Fitting a DCM/Kalman filter and everything else on a 328 is TIGHT!

    The APM is good and ready to go. If you're worried about $40 your in the wrong hobby. One crash can cost you that.

    Hobby King has a knockoff MK controller board you might be interested in if you just want basic stabilization.

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