My First Quad

Hello all,

I have been reading this web site for over a year now and I have finally decided that I will take the plunge and get a quad, but I have a few concerns.

To give you an idea of my skills,

 - I have no RC experience

 - I am a software engineer

My Questions:

 - Should I be getting some RC experience before getting a quad? If so, where should I start?

 - Frame: Should I buy a cheaper frame to learn with and then upgrade later or get a good frame first up?

Thank you all, This site is awesome :-D

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  • How did you set the LB in beginner mode?
  • I am really just getting into this now too. I come from a very similar background... Software engineer with no RC aircraft experience. I would definitely recommend the 3DR + APM2. With the Arducopter 2.6 it flies really well. I have actually managed a few flights in stabilize mode without crashing. Also, get the pre-soldered version of APM2, since that will eliminate a potential source of errors when you are first getting started.

    One of my friends recommended getting an RC simulator. I bought Phoenix RC (comes with a cable that plugs into the trainer port on your transmitter) and one of the models is a quadcopter. The sim is actually harder to fly than Arducopter. It is nice though, since it teaches you to be lighter on the controls and you can start to develop a little muscle memory. Plus when you wreck in the sim, you just reset and try again.

  • Moderator

    Get something like a QR Ladybird. They are pretty indestructible, are great to learn quad piloting on, and are inexpensive. And fun. You can find them for about $120 with the controller. Get a "mode 2" controller. Just one opinion. 

    Your chief obstacle besides having no piloting experience is not likely to be a lack of RC experience so much as electronics. As a software engineer, you'll have experience debugging, troubleshooting, having multiple issues at the same time to aggravate your troubleshooting, overlooking your own mistakes, etc. Your software experience, however, does not naturally lend to helping you with the hardware challenges like RF and magnetic fields, cold solder joints, vibration-driven sensor aliasing, avoiding pulling too much current through your board, addressing heat issues, etc. But you should pick it all up pretty quick if you don't have the background (and you might anyways, you just didn't mention it.)

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