3D Printed Folding Quadcopter

Here is my 3D Printed Folding Quadcopter:



I got the original design from here: http://multirotorpilotmag.com/fpvquad/. I did not like the original design because it is too weak, and flimsy, easy to bend. I wanted something more solid, so I spent a lot of time to modify it to where it is now... 





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  • I printed it in PLA; I hear it is much more difficult to print in ABS, so I did not even bother...

    I use the Skeinforge slicer. I know it's old, and slow, but so far I did not have problems with it. It takes a while to learn all the settings though...

    My printer is Mendel90 Dibond (the original one from nophead). The printer has an area of 200x200x200 mm, has a heated bed, and it prints on glass.

    I printed all the parts without raft, so it has a nice smooth finish on the first layer. I only used support for the middle plate of the quadcopter, and it only needs a little bit support. The quad arms even though it has holes through the part, I printed it without support because it is almost impossible to remove. The only section where it would need some support is the hole for the wires of the motor where the motor gets mounted. The hole is like a rectangle, so the plastic hangs a little bit there, but it's not a big issue...

  • Very nice, Michael.

    I builded a RepRap, Graber i3, with 250 x 250 x 250mm printer area.

    I intended to build fixed-wing pushers planes, because I use it more.

    Are you printed it with ABS or PLA?

    Which slicer did you use? I using slic3r and few issues with infill feature and how to build support for big pieces. Will be nice if we could talk more regarding this questions.

    Thanks and congrats again.

  • MR60

    Really nice.  Like the prudent use of colors.  What do all of the plastic parts weight?  Are you thinking about how to lighten & stiffen it further so it flies longer/

    • I did not weigh each part, but the quad as you see it in the picture (all electronics, without the battery) it weighs 900 grams, so with a ~400 batery, the whole quad is 1300 grams... not bad (I think).


      I don't have an appropriate battery for it yet (it's on the way), right now I have a 6000 MAh 4S battery (that I use on my DJI F500 Hexacopter), the battery is 623 grams. I put this battery on the 3D printed quad, and it takes off and hovers at 50% throttle.


      Well, if you really want it lighter, then print the original design, I am pretty sure it flies.... but I actually printed the original, and when I put the frame together, my first thought was that it's way too weak. I did not even bother to put the motors and electronics to try it out. My 2 year old son is playing with it now; it looks like a robot... so it was not a complete waste :)

    • MR60

      On weight removal, the key is design, resulting in a stiffer and lighter craft.

      - increase the height dimension of the motor masts (cube function so 2x change in height = 8x stiffer).

      - change the sides of the motor masts to a VVVVV shape (average weight loss only decreases stiffness linear).

      - thin the walls of the electronics platform and cover

      - add lightening holes to the electronics platform/cover

      - replace metal screws/nuts/washers with nylon screws/nuts/washers

      I'm guessing that you can cut plastic weight by 300 grams.  So only about a 23% increase in flight time.  It might not be worth the challenge unless you enjoy challenges like that :-)

      In any case, great job on design and printing.  Your son will end up with really cool robots and will probably grow up loving to engineer and print ... what a cool thing for kids.

    • I got my 3D printer about 2 months ago (end of January), and I did not know much about them before then (besides that they are cool, and wanted one). So I had a lot to learn in those 2 months, I never designed anything in 3D before, so I also had to learn to use Sketchup.

      My first hobby was and is electronics, then I did programming as a hobby, and programming as a full time job. I started with Multirotors about 3 years ago. Got an AR Drone 2.0, then I got an DJI F550 with MultiWii Pro, then I made my own quadcopter from wood with Naze32, and now the 3D Printed one...

      By the way, check out my video: http://diydrones.com/video/dji-f550-hexacopter-frame-multiwii-tarot... (watch it full screen, in HD, and with sound), the video does not play on mobile phones (don't ask me why?... ask YouTube)


      So... to make it short, I am still new to multirotors, and I am very new to 3D printing. I am a perfectionist by heart, but I am gonna leave the "perfectioning" part for later, right now I am happy that it flies...


      PS. One of the reasons why I got my 3D Printer was to also make toys for my son (and I already printed a few things for him), and when he gets old enough, I will teach him to do his own things in 3D and print them. So, right now he is too young to understand what is going on, but I can't wait to see what he can do with it.

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