Foldable frame for camera-quadrocopter (for travels)

Hi,

I'd like to built a foldable quadrocopter which I can take with me on a round-the-world trip. When folded it should be small enough to be carried in a backpack, so I can take it with me on (shorter) trekking tours.

What I ultimately want is a quadrocopter with 3D gimbal and a decent camera (GoPro class or lightweight digital camera), and - if possible - gps features such as come home and waypoints (maybe a PixHawk controller?).

Anyway, first I need a frame, so I started searching.

Frames I found so far:

- HobbyKing Predator 650 Folding Quad-Copter Carbon Fiber (Size 650 mm, 646 g)
- HobbyKing Alien 560 Folding Quad-Copter Carbon Fiber (Size 560 mm, 520 g)
- Quanum XJ470 CF Folding Sports Quadcopter Frame (Size 470 mm, 410 g)
- Black Snapper L PRO (Size 665 mm, 490 g)
- Black Snapper XS V2.0 (Size 360 mm, 125 g)

These frames differ widely in size.

I have little experience with construction drones so far, and can't really judge which frame size would be best. The larger ones are probably to big for a "backpack-drone", while the smallest one is probably a little bit to small for carrying a gimbal + camera and resist wind?

I would really appreciate some recommendations! :-)

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Replies

  • Buy a Mavic DJI and you are just fine. 

  • I would have to update this posting since the DJI Mavic has been launched. There is no other choice. It seems an absolute game changer.  I am buying one. Most of my DIY efforts are directed towards fixed wings these days. DJI in particular have killed the desire for me and many others to DIY small AP copters. 

  • if you want to build, consider foxtech hover 1 or mavic if you just want to fly. sadly the dji copter is the best available solution when traveling.

  • answer is DJI Mavic (small) or dji Phantom 3 or 4

  • The immersionrc xugong looks nice.  But I gotta say the mavic looks incredible.  If I was going travelling and wanted something reliable, easy to use and easy to get spares for, mavic would be top of the list for sure.

  • I fully agree with Marc Dornan, and its a bit sad because this is a DIY site but there is no way that oneself can build a drone for the same amount of dollars and have similar specs as a Bebop, DJI or GoPro

  • Unless you are really in love with building I would recommend looking at a Bebop, simple an durable or a Xugong.

  • This is a kill joy posting but I have built and travelled with a fair few machines. It is is not really practical but it can be done. You will spend a fair bit of time perfecting such a machine if if you want good video from a 3 axis gimbal. If you really care about the results more than the building process you can get a Phantom 3/4 or Solo in a back pack and the result will be better. DJI is planning to release just such a foldable machine. http://www.suasnews.com/2016/09/dji-mavic-images-emerge/ It is likely to be impressive. Then again GoPros Karma is also really travel friendly. The most portable frame I have seen is this one http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__78814__ImmersionRC_XuGon.... It is optimized for a Naza FC though, but that may be all you need. You could easily get a Pixracer or something on it if you were determined.
  • HobbyKing Predator 650 Folding Quad-Copter Carbon Fiber - very good model. I buy Holy Stone HS170 Predator Mini Quadcopter RC on site jonsguide.orgHoly 750 mAh batteries which recharge in 1 hour 20 minutes. Best model for me.

    Top 10 Best Mini Quadcopter Choices — Greatest Reviews for You (2019)
    Mini quadcopter reviews will help you to make the best choice in 2019. There is much information out there on nano drones.
  • Moderator

    I built my own, first a folding carbon H-frame: http://diydrones.com/profiles/blogs/diy-carbon-h-frame-quadcopter with photos here: https://picasaweb.google.com/103216201815950906175/CarbonHQuad?auth... then one from EPP: http://diydrones.com/profiles/blogs/epp-foam-folding-h-frame-quad.

    Now I'm flying a folding tricopter based on the earlier designs by http://rcexplorer.se/product/tricopter-v3-kit/.

    It folds up really small and packs easily into a 420mm x 280mm x 120mm case

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