I'm setting up an X6 with APM Planner on a Mac. The FCU is a 3DR Pixhawk.

My problem is that the motors spin in the opposite direction: so top left spins CCW instead of CW, and so on.

To be more clear, each arm has its own motor spinning alternatively (CCW, CW, CCW etc.) but flipped compared to what is required by Ardupilot setup guide.

Is it a problem or I can keep them spinning like this?

I would avoid to change the ESC connections because I mounted the ESC and the motors very, very tight... I should unmount most of the chassis to do it.


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I think The only way to go is swapping 2 of 3 AC cables between esc and motors. If there id a software óption to reverse motor spin, i dont know. But is always better do things the way those things are expected to be done, rather than doing workarounds. Telling you due to self experience. Lots of crashes Just to save time and work, ended wasting time anyway, and many bucks.


APM provides no self-configuration option for ESC + motors

so you need to run motor tests from Mission Planner

to verify individual ESC + motor match preselected ports with Pixhawk

to avoid flipping on the ground.

Spinning direction is one issue,  proper ESC connection is another problem to be solved by you.

In theory APM PRO could provide ESC + motor autoconfiguration since ESC ports can be software switched to match designed motor layout and designed CCW, CW settings

to avoid problems with selecting other sockets for your ESC.

Today you need to do that job manually and run configuration tests on yourself.

It's a problem, I have to give you the bad news that you have to change two wires from your motors, test that they are spinning on the correct way and them reassemble, be shure that the esc are plugged to Pixhawk in correct way.

Hi all,

thanks for your prompt support. Actually I already started to swap the wires between ESCs and motors. Then I'll check again the motors direction and see if everything is ok.

Thanks to you all guys. If something is wrong I will post here for more help.

Most ESCs also have an option to change the spin direction on the firmware

You could just sway your props without having to redo you build.

Most definitively not. The autopilot demands CC and CCW to be at the correct fixed positions.

that's what I did. Now everything is correct.

Hi John,

do you know if there is a way to test the motor number? I connected the Pixhawk outputs to the PDB correctly, but I just would test them (from a Mac, possibly) just to double check.



I've seen that before but that tab is not visible on APM Planner 51b6aa92-2.0.18 on a Mac.

BTW, I always had a hard time remembering which way quad motors should turn in the beginning. Here's my little mnemonic:

Pretend the drone is vertical in front of you.

Hold your hands above your head and point your fingers at each other from opposite hands. This is how the two top motors rotate - your hands are the outside ends of the props.

Now lower your hands to your waist and point them at each other, palms up. This is the direction how the bottom two rotate.


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