I mean, I'd like to buy just the guts, and put them into my own airframe. Seems like this would be a good way to compete with DJI - you could get a lot more 3DR platforms out there that way, on airframes of all shapes and sizes, and let your platform users do the bulk of the airframe development. 3DR would still make their own airframes, but Solo Platform users wouldn't be restricted to whatever you offered, and you wouldn't have to develop a number of airframes to please everyone. Your airframe inventory would be lower, but your overall market share would increase.

You need to be a member of diydrones to add comments!

Join diydrones

Email me when people reply –


  • For anyone interested. I have been working on this intermittently. I have since printed a shell to hold the internals, reoriented the external compass and recalibrated everything. I hooked up a 30A Afro Opto ESC and an HP3510 and was able to arm and spool it up. Yes, with a little hacking you can reconfigure your Solo gear to other ESCs', motors, batteries, and hardware. I should be able to post a vid of a larger build flying it before too long.
    • Exciting news! Thanks for the update.

    • It has taken me a while to get around to doing this, but here's the first flight of a Pixhawk 2 on something other than a Solo.  


    • Todd,

      That is so awesome!  That is what I want to do!!  I would like to go with an x8 or hex frame though just to have redundancy because I want to hook up a gimbal with a panasonic gh4 or sony a7s and do smart shots (and those are very expensive cameras haha).  How difficult was this project?  Do you plan on adding a gimbal to this setup? 

  • Chris you say " WIth our own hardware, 3DR is moving towards higher-performance platforms, which are aimed primarily at prosumer and enterprise markets". Is there any real effort going into solving the present micro vibration problems on Solo. I want to buy into Solo/Pixhawk2 Cablecam etc as soon as gimbal picture quality is assured rather than build my own platform if possible.

    • It's great to hear an official response on the upcoming hardware release.  As a fervent 3DR supporter and avid APM user I have been reluctant to use anything else for my projects, but lets face it, the Pixhawk has been nearing the end of the line for some time now.  To get the features that many are wanting on their custom setups requires a cacophony of hardware add on that make it very difficult to keep everything looking clean.  Of late I have been using the Navio+ and Erle Brain for my more recent projects.  However, both of these are still lacking in features and simplicity when compared against the Solo hardware.   

      I have kept up with what info is pushed on Github on the upcoming hardware, but i have stopped anticipating its release.  I recently purchased a solo and gutted it for its hardware to install on a larger build.   Is there any documentation on board schematics denoting pinouts etc?  Any help that can be given towards speeding up adapting the solo to other frames would be greatly appreciated and shared.  While it may not be the most practical solution, I am determined to give it a go.  So far I have gotten everything needed removed, and have already printed a custom case for the hardware.  Whats needed now is to figure out what I am going to do for running higher voltages to the board and connecting the ESCs'.  

      Some have stated that this is a rather pricey undertaking, but it really isn't given what can be gained for around $1k.  If one was to calculate the cost of a high end flight controller, GPS, Telemetry, HD downlink and quality RC transmitter it is approximate to the cost of a Solo.  I know this voids any warranty, but I have been trouble shooting, fixing and rebuilding my own hardware for some time now anyhow.  

    • Very interested in following your progress Todd!  I was imagining doing the same thing but didn't even know if it was possible.  This gives me hope that I can possibly have the solo brain and computing power on a bigger frame carrying higher quality cameras in the near future!!  Any updates at all?

    • Very cool, I would also be interested in hearing how this pans out for you.

    • Looking forward to following anything you share with this undertaking. Are you going to use the hardware on another quad? Or go hex/octo? (hoping for the latter) 

      Best of luck!

    • Hey Todd, interesting that you have parted-out a Solo.  I actually predicted this would happen if the guts of the Solo were not sold as a stand-alone system.  You are right. $1000 for what you get isn't really bad at all, and you can even sell off the ESC's, motors, battery, charger and shell to recoup some of the cost. I would think you could even get up to $500 back, meaning you're getting the avionics and hand controller for $500, which is an absolute steal.  I was going to do it myself but just never got around to it.  Also, the hand controller ergonomics isn't perfect for me.  Actually, that's the biggest reason I haven't done it.

      Be careful using the PH2.  I recently installed one on a quad with 15" props and hard mounted it, assuming the internal vibration isolation in the cube would work.  It does not work with the lower RPM of the bigger props.  Vibration levels were actually very high.

This reply was deleted.