Planned QUADROcopter UAV, please look over my setup before I buy

Hello,
I am planning on working on an autonomous quadrocopter, to develop neural network based software on. Can I get feed back on the setup?
---------------------------------------------QUADROCOPTER------------------------------------------------------------------
1x http://www.hobbycity.com/hobbycity/store/uh_viewItem.asp?idProduct=68                                                        ($3.49)

TOTAL: $173.9
-------------------------------------------------------ELECTRONICS---------------------------------------------------------
http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=9623                        ($124.95)
http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8772 (?)                        ($13.95)
*
*
TOTAL: $ 504.56
TOTAL(alternates): $493.64
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

*alternate
**preferred alternate

What do you think of the alternates? For the wireless, its mainly data transfer, but will hopefully be able to switch into direct control for emergencies.

Proppellers will be close together, 2" spacing from the prop diameter.
Please tell me if their is anything I am missing!

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I'd recommend you to order more props than just one set. Like an order of magnitude more. Trust me, you're gonna be breaking them on a daily basis, especially in the early days of (your) flight.
Yes, I only included this for the actual flight.
One of my main concerns is if the motor/prop combo will be able to lift all that stuff (except programmers). Whats a estimated thrust for that setup?
It will be more than enough to lift it, there are many configs like that flying all over Germany. Find an online thrust calculator and plug your numbers in it.

I can provide you with a guesstimate for its hover time on that battery - assuming AUW of 1.5 kg and system efficiency between 20% and 35%, you should get hover currents between 18 and 32 A, and (with a 4000 mAh lipo) a hover time between 7 and 13 minutes. If you bring the weight below 1 kg, you'll be flying for more than 20 minutes.
I would recomend you to concentrate on what is your main goal.
1) To build a new quadrocopter, or
2) to develop all the electronics for the quadrocopter including IMU, or
3) to develop the neural network based software?
These are quiet different goals and you have to decide where do you start.

I recomend to buy one ready to fly quadrocopter, lot of spare parts and replace the electronics inside with some existing programable one.

When I started with a car, I have bought one RC Monster Track and have put one arduino between the receiver and both motor and servo ... :-)

And...it would be easier to develop the neural SW on something easier like bicycle or self balancing robot. These are just my opinions and I know you may disagree.
Thank you for the suggestions. In fact, my original goal was to develop a ground vehicle, similar to CMU's crusher: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_VyTCyizqrHs/R89Ca-OAdQI/AAAAAAAAAOA/AGB2c...

I decided to switch to Arial due to easier testing, and more of a challenge.
Petr: I am mainly doing number 3, but the overall goal is to build a cost effective solution for various applications. I am doing this for the seimens competition and the ISEF competition.
As you probably noticed, I am using premade IMU modules. My goal is a modular, useful, design. I am not using a premade one for a couple of main reasons:
1) Processing power. My brother is working on 3D reconstruction with stereopsis, that will go on here.
2)Space to mount things. I have a compact frame designed and cut out a prototype from wood on my school's laser, I will try to get a picture up today.
3)I like doing things my self :)

Is their any problem with bringing the props in? The 10" prop diameters come within two inches of adjacent props, I didn't extend it out like most people.
I encourage you to do what you plan. You have choosen a big one. I sudgest you to cut your plans into several smaler projects. Its easier to have an overview, check your advancment and, mainly for me, it is more fun to see small steps going forward on smaler projects :-)

Not important if small or big, you have to decide what you wish to create. If you have several different goals, choose what they have in common. Building a house is similar. It is difficult to build hightech 2km high hotel, if you are two and have not much time and small money as its my case :-)
I do plan on splitting the project up.
This summer I got a job (SEAP) at a NAVY lab, so I plan on working on code during the summer while I am away from my equipment and the school machine shop.
This is how I always do projects, I chose a railgun project before I started electronics (http://rp181.fortscribe.com).

So the list looks good?
Thoughts on the wireless system which I marked alternates for? Modem seems good, but Im not sure about connection speed. Please take a look at those!
I was planning two 4000mAh packs, does this sound reasonable weight wise or should I keep it at one?
That depends on the efficiency curve that you get from your battery-ESC-motor-prop chain. It might noticeably increase your flight time, but it might just as well push your motors into inefficient RPMs and actually reduce the flight time. The easiest (and really effortless) way of knowing for sure is to just do a test and see :)
What are you planning to use for a frame?

- Roy
Here is a link to the prototype wood one:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rp181/4446812554/sizes/l/
On top is a 15" ruler. I cut the grooves for the ESC's, but I think I am going to keep it open for better air flow. On the left wing, you can see a arc I drew, this is the extent of a 10" diameter circle whose center is in the center of one small hole (outer ring radius is 1" from edge of frame to middle of small circle).
If arcs are drawn on all wings, this is the pattern for the second piece that will be another "deck" held by standoffs from the bottom.
What do you think?
How does the RPM change when I am paralleling the packs? The voltage will remain 11.1V (3S)

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