Multicopters PDB Questions

I am new to the Multicopters world and have spent a few weeks just researching the different types of Multicopters and what type would best interest me (RTF, ARF, KIT, Build my own). After doing the research I wanted to try and build my own (I know this isn’t recommended, but I do have experience with other RC platforms). 

Once I found the ArduCopter I know it was exactly what I wanted to use.

I has a few questions and thought I would ask the experts for help!

My setup will be a hexacopter and I am struggling with how I need to connect my battery to the ESCs. I know some people use the PDB, but it seems a lot of them need a lot of soldering. Is there one out there that you can buy pre soldered? Also is there a way to use two LiPo batteries at the same time?

I am also looking at the Spektrum DX8 Transmitter. Do you know if this is a good unit? Do you have a preferred Receiver for long distance flight?

Thanks for your help!

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  • Clint,

    I have a 3DR Hexa-B kit with APM 2.5 controller and I used the PDB but not exactly per the Hexa-B user manual. If you use the APM 2.5 controller you can get by with only soldering the ESC power leads to the PDB. To keep it simple solder the cables directly to the PDB and skip the Deans plugs as shown. It also makes for a cleaner install! Then solder the two leads for the battery and your done!. The APM 2.5 does not need all of the soldering for the smaller leads. That is for the APM 2.0 or older. Connect the 3 wire leads from the ESC directly to the OUTPUTS on the APM 2.5 and the Receiver leads to the INPUTS. The entire process takes less than 30 minutes using this syetem. For myself I use the Spektrum DX8 transmitter with the AR8000 receiver. Hope this helps...

  • I haven't posted before, but have enough research done, and far enough into my own build to answer some of your questions.

    First off I have bought a presoldered PDB, and it works fine. You should try Ebay, there might be one suitable for a hexa (my 3/4 finished build is a quad).

    The way you would use 2 batteries at once is to join them in parallel. This is joining the + to + and - to -. The combined connections would then connect to the PDB for distribution to the escs.

    I can't comment on your transmitter choice as I have no experience with it. 

    My only other comment, is from spending much time on these and other multcopter forums I wouldn't advise starting with a hexa. The general advise given seems to be stay simple at first, and then build up to the final goal. And from what I see your final goal is long distance flight. This wouldn't really be realistic on a first-time build, especially a multicopter as they seem to only have a short flight time. Even with the parallel batteries you wouldn't double the flight time, more like 3/2.

    Hope this gets you started some of the way anyhow.

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