Hi everyone,

I'm creating this thread to share your drone/copter information. I believe, this would help immensely for newbies like me during the initial build. For example, the Chris's blog on cheap Hobby King quad configuration is really a good resource.  

I don't want to burden anyone who is willing to share their info. Hence all fields are optional. Atleast the first 5 fields are ideal. Please find the list of fields to copy/paste at the end, so you can start filling :-). 

Here goes information about my quad.

frame: Quadcopter (3DRobotics)
controller/autopilot: APM1
esc: 20A (3DRobotics)
motors: 850Kv (3DRobotics)
propellers: 10x47, APC (3DRobotics)
motor to motor distance: -- inches

battery:  4S 3300mAh (Turnigy nano-tech)
total weight: -- lbs
flying time: 15 minutes (average)

radio: Turnigy 9X 
video/osd: none
other: Sonar, Xbee, GPS/Mag, Attopilot current sensor



Turnigy 9X: Mode1 -> Mode2 change, Li-ion battery hack





motor to motor distance: -- inches

total weight: -- lbs
flying time:


Misc (hacks/mods):


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To try to give you an idea of how much weight you can save by building your own design, I'll give the following as a reference.  It's for an Octa V, so it has 33% more weight than a Hexa.  No camera stuff yet or FPV.  Just APM, telemetry, and external GPS.

  • 330g Structure/platform
  • 399g Electronics (mostly savings in using the right gauge wire)
  • 729g Motors/Props/Mounts

From dealing with commercial products, it's relatively easy to eliminate 450 grams if you build it yourself.  If you are interested in trying it, the best build-to-remove-weight feed on this is:


Oh believe me, I know all about the weight advantages of building my own frame.  Especially with access to the proper materials :)

I'm sure there's more projects in my future and I will definitely be building my own frames.  The goals with my hex were to focus on other aspects, namely programming.  I won't have as easy access to the shop this summer so it was quicker to just buy a frame and get to work.

Thanks for the link to your article.  I've read it before but had it stashed away in the back of my mind :)

Possibly in the fall I'll get time to design and build a new frame using some aerospace composites.  The nice part is that drones are small compared to what I use at work, so I can just use the scrap bits of material!

>> Since then I've tuned the RCTimer gimbal, wired up the motors and escs, and did the >> basic >> Arducopter 3.0.1 setup

Did you connect the RCTimer gimbal to the gimbal outputs on the APM controller, or did you purchase the external controller board that RCTimer sells for the gimbal.  ??

I'm looking at the RCTimer gimbal, but I'd like to know if it can be directly connected to the gimbal pins (10 & 11) on the APM2.5.

You can not connect the gimbal directly to the APM's output pins.  A10 and A11 are for servos only, not brushless motors (technically you shouldn't even power servos directly from the APM).  You'll need the brushless control board.  I have the RCTimer one (Martinez-based, I think?) and it works fine.

You might be able to connect just the signal wires from the APM to the gimbal controller (bypassing the controller's IMU) but I'm not sure why you'd bother.  Seems to add more complexity for very little gain.

If you have any questions about the RCTimer gimbal, I highly recommend reading this thread on RC Groups:


Any possible question has been asked and answered in that thread.

Perfect..  That's exactly what I wanted to know.    Thanks!

Heavy Metal Class

the All Aluminum Flyer .

and yes its an external HDD case

2nd design AUW 1.5Kg

the 1st design AUW 2Kg

Motor 950kv 850kv

Prop 9x45 - 10x45

3s 5300mah

frame: Quadframe heavy + quadframe 200mm legs + DJI board + 4 pontoons
controller/autopilot: APM2.5 + ext mag+gps + 433 telem (inc 1/4wave antenna)
esc: HK multistar 40A
motors: Tmotor 3508-29
propellers:Tmotor 1450
motor to motor distance: big.

battery: Maxamp 10900 or Zippy 8000 6S
total weight: 3.6kg
flying time: 24 minutes at 20'c 900m ASL.

radio:OrangeRX 8ch, with 2 sats on 30cm cables. TM1000 telem
video/osd: minimOSD, HK FPV switcher, immersion 600mw 5.8, PZ0420 pilotcam, GoPro2

RCTimer gimbal, Gryphon 5V and 12V BEC's, Braincube LED driver

Misc (hacks/mods): My own custom batter plate for the legs; makes gimbal performance better. Legs risers replaced to give space to the 10900mah.


frame: My own design in CF. Will be on sale in March.
controller/autopilot: APM2.5 + ext mag+gps + 433 telem (inc 1/4wave antenna)
esc: Tmotor Opto Pro 30A
motors: Sunnysky 4112's
propellers:Tmotor 1550
motor to motor distance: 883mm.

battery: Maxamp 10900 or Zippy 8000 6S. Frame can take 16,000mah.
total weight: 4.7kg
flying time: 15-18 minutes at 20'c 900m ASL.

radio:spektrum AR8000 + TM1000
video/osd: EzOSD, immersion 600mw 5.8, HK FPV switcher, PZ0420 pilotcam, Nex5

RCTimer gimbal ASP gimbal, Gryphon 8 port PDB + BEC disc
Misc (hacks/mods): See whole frame


frame: TBS Disco + Core + shield
controller/autopilot: APM2.5 + ext mag+gps + 433 telem (inc 1/4wave antenna)
esc: Tmotor Opto Pro 30A
motors: Tmotor 2216-11
propellers:RCtimer 9050
motor to motor distance: unknown
battery: TBS 4500 4S.
total weight: 1.65kg
flying time: 15-18 minutes at 20'c 900m ASL.

radio:spektrum AR8000
video/osd: immersion 600mw 5.8, PZ0420 pilotcam, GoPro2

USB extension cable for APM port. Reuse of G10 plate to mount APM internally.


"Gym bunny"
frame: 240 from china
controller/autopilot: KK2
esc: Tmotor 12A
motors: Tmotor 3000kv
motor to motor distance: 240mm
battery: 800-1300 2S
total weight: tiny
flying time: 6-9 minutes at 20'c 900m ASL.

radio:spektrum 4 channel
video/osd: NA


Photo's can be found throughout my blog posts.

What was the total weight of the mkIII copter? Which battery?

Name: Eris V1.0 Jacob's Series

frame: dji F450 ( owned ) with custom made extensions ( plus 9cm per arm my design )

controller/autopilot: Naza V2 gps PMU v2 ( owned ) iosd markII ( coming )

esc: T40A PRO ESC from Tiger Motor ( coming )

motors: U3 kv700 from Tiger Motor ( coming )

propellers: Tiger Motor Carbon Prop - 12x4  ( coming )

motor to motor distance: -- 24.8 inches (63cm)

battery:  Turnigy 5000mAh 4S 35C Lipo Pack - 2x ( coming ) to be mounted in parallel

total weight: -- lbs

flying time: aiming for 25min+

radio: Futaba 6J - 2.4GHz 6-channel S-FHSS/FHSS - Futaba R2006GS 6 channel Receiver ( own )

video/osd: Mobius HD with custom remade gimbal with 2-axis rctimer GBM2212 015-70T ( own ) / 2-axis brushless camera gimbal stabilization control board w/IMU

other: Painted arms and extenders in heat dissipation ink - color:  black mate same for the landing extensions


Misc (hacks/mods): still learning 



I had similar landing skids like you do. They catch a lot of wind! Is it going to be a quad, hex or octo?

I'm starting to live your story :P here in Portugal i have lots of problems in finding parts and electronics! And i was not a programer in my 20's i'll just have to excell myself in the design, since i'm an architect and an artist. But i'm starting to feel that i love quadcopters, not so much the hex or the octo!  Keep improving and if you dont mind share the rctimer tuning process, i them too.


Tiago Santos

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