Early flight test lessons

So, finally got my APM2 a week ago, got it set up, and did my first flight:

Right off the bat, it was listing HEAVILY to the right, not flipping over, but required a lot of stick to keep it stable.  I looked at the mounting of the APM board with sticky foam tape and made sure it looked level.  I went through all the setup all over again, from the beginning.   I read a ton of forum and troubleshooting suggestions, and remembered how much I laughed when people screwed up the + vs X config, and then I went ahead and corrected mine to the X config.  WHAMMO!  Wow, what a difference following instructions can make!  Glad I learned my lesson early before breaking anything.

So on to my next lesson!  Batteries should be VERY securely mounted when using velcro straps.  2 new propellers later, I'm glad I learned my lesson without breaking anything expensive!

And today, while experiencing the magic of alt hold and getting ready to do some fun gps hold testing, my arducopter flipped over on it side and rocketed itself into a fence.  DAMN!  It must have overcorrected ( internal voice:  it musta been you that overcorrected!!  NO, IT WAS THE DAMN BOARD!! ).  So, let's look at telemetry!  hmmm..  doesn't look like either of us did anything wrong ( thank you telemetry graphing! )...  well how could the mount screws "break" in the crash and just sort of vanish near the crash site?  Seems to me I remember several suggestions around glue or locktite on the motor mount screws...  So yeah, allow me to now officially recommend this to anyone who has not already done so!  4 new props on the way, and I'll be hunting for the write screws and some locktite tomorrow ;)

Still having a blast, still proud ( with a few ego bruises ) of my build and setup, and enjoying the ^#$% out of this...  While I'm waiting on props ( found all but one in local hobby shops ), going to snip off the bullet connectors and solder the ESC to Motor wires...  no more "engine failures"!!

Thanks to the whole crew for a new expensive and complicated hobby...  Need to go study for my ham radio license...


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  • I've experienced the same broken motor mounts issue which has resulted in either a severe or 'fingers crossed' emergency landing. I'm now using a new frame and metal mounts to get around this.

    The battery straps are paramount, after my original strap broke I've now got two thick replacements. I'm installing two batteries shortly and will need a new mounting strategy for them... more straps or a base plate perhaps, any tips?

  • Don't forget to use good propellers also. APC or those new ones Cf reinforced. Cheap props tend to break under stress after 2 or 3 flights, and they don't warn you when they are going to break.

  • Hey, instead of soldering everything how about getting some shrink wrap and wrap the bullet connectors then all you have to do is cut the wrap to replace any bad parts etc...


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