Motor Got Ripped Out In Mid Flight


Maybe somebody can give me some advise please. I have the Talon with the extended wings and I must admit I have fallen in love with this Plane! It flies very stable and slow which is ideal for my Aerial Survey Mapping Projects.

This all ended this morning, when sending it on a Mission, the motor ripped the entire section off from the back of the Plane and needless to same, the Talon kissed Mother Earth! There goes my Love Life!

It was the standard Motor size that get supplied by the Company in China. Any ideas?

I am going to buy a new one and need some advise to cover the Body for some extra strength and better surface finish.



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  • Here is a video of my fix for the motor torque issue:

  • Hi Mike, Oh dear - my Talon, named Vakerie, was used as a plug to make a mold to build composite Talon's. This left my Talon with spray-on release agent from hell and the mold had a mechanical lock on the vertical faces that made it difficult to pull the fuse. Very disappointing. I shelved that..for now. I'll tinker with that once the rest of my projects are out the gate. I'm on plan B for a more rugged airframe. The basic principles are:

    1. Clarke-Y airfoil. Around 2m - depends on the camera - up to 2.4m for the Canon EOS M3.

    2. I use a V-tail configuration.

    3. I used a pusher prop since it seemed logical to protect the prop. The side slip effect is the down side, so I moved to a prop on the front.

    That's basically it...nothing fancy. I hot wire cut the poly and vacuum bag it with glass for the wings. I shape the fuse with sandpaper and vacuum it as well. From there I cut the fuse and hollow out for the components. Longer process than the foamies but much more rugged. I have 2 flying and another on the bench.

    I considered the Maja as well. There are many positive reviews about the airframe as there are not so positive. The less positive reviews put me off. I do not know the Albatross.

    To be honest, I consider moving back to my previous philosophy regarding the foamies once the composites reach their end of life - just takes a lot of time to build a composite.

    Regarding Ceaser, I've been trying to swing my whole department to Trimble for the last 5 years. It must be the most difficult task to get the old hands to move to the new system. I have Leica 403's in the field with your software on Psion workabouts still working...this is with a Trimble standing in the store. So, for now, why fix it if it is not broken. Once the Psion's go down, I'll be in a pinch since the guys would not have transitioned to the new platform, so I might just be calling you for some help in that regard.


  • Hi Mike, I trust all is well.

    I have come to the crossroads a while back and derived the following:

    1. The Talon, although a brilliant for what we do, is made from a foam that is aimed at the hobby market manufactured at the lowest possible cost(effort)

    2. This airframe is subject to the stresses and abuse of G's that is applied by the AP or pilot during the missions.

    3. The foams, ply and other bits and bobs glued together will form cracks under these strains and although you will not see these, they will eat away at the structural strength of the airframe until something fails and it falls from the sky.

    Here is, in my opinion, the conclusions that will save a lot of tears and frustration.

    You must make peace with the fact that a airframe is a consumable. Assign a lifetime to the collection of components that you are putting up, based on the shortest lifetime component(servo, ESC, motor, hinge...whatever). Write off the whole collection at the end of the pre-determined lifetime. This does not give you licence to ignore common sense and good practice when assembling your aircraft.

    In conclusion - if you decided to standardize on the Talon, accept the fact that you can do 10 hours on an airframe. You can increase this by using higher quality parts(I use Savox digital coreless servos, Scorpion and KDE motors) and I do not use a single plug in the circuitry. I solder everything - I'm at the point of mounting all connections on a larger PCB to reduce connections. You will reach the point that you can build a Talon with your preferred layout within a hour or two. Once the setup is sorted, you can keep for installation on your next Talon. Keep in mind that even if you do not use the same servo horn holes as before, you would have to re-tune the airframe. Find the best battery/motor and prop combination - I used ecalc (best $1 ive spent in a long time). Balance the props properly. They are the primary source of vibration and it is the main killer of component bond. Better part increase the re-usability of these as well.

    If you want to 'cover' the body for strength, keep in mind that there are 2 sides to the fuse - the inner and outer. If you cover the outer, you still have a layer of foam between the laminate and the ply that hold the motor mount. You can vacuum bag the fuse in halves with a 100g/m2 glass with an epoxy resin. You can do that with the wings as well. Make sure you get the stress points with double layers(where the horns screw in and the servo mounts) I would estimate a weight increase of around 300g in doing this.

    When you're in the Jo'burg area, PM me. I'll show you what I've done.



    • Hi Antonie

      Good you hear from you again! How is life treating you? Just off the subject...have a look at ... I have together with another person rewritten the program using Microsoft Visual Studio. You can download a full working demo version on the Website. I know that you once made a comment that the "Pull-down" menus that I use in my program is outdated and that SurveCE or Field Genius uses icons, but I have too many functions in the program to add an Icon to each one.

      Coming back to the Planes, I can see the outlook that you have on the Planes and maybe I should follow your way of thinking as well. We normally use composite Frames that I get from Russia, but we had this rush Job to do in Botswana and that is why we decided on the Talon. I have no problem with the Talon and going to order another one, but I would like to make it look more "Professional".

      Do you have any experience with the Maja from Bormatec? What are your thoughts on the Albatross?

      Could you please send me some pics of your Talon please....send to



    • Hi All

      It seems that I am not the only one with losing Motors!

      Have a look at:



  • After reading this, I'm going to wrap the back of mine with strapping tape.  Really don't want to add anymore weight to the motor end but don't want it to shed the weight like yours did.

    • Mike, that was an internal construction problem, wrapping something around the outside won't fix it.

    • Sorry for the lack of attention.  I responded in line from my phone without reading the postmortem report in its entirety.

      I would share my configs for the pixhawk but bear in mind I only have a couple of auto-tune flights on it  and have only tested loiter and rtl to this point.  I still need to tune the tecs and make sure it can fly a mission reliably.

    • Would be excellent to have a starting point in any case and share findings.  As well - I think that the acceleration torque issue is an "issue" for that motor mounting.   I'm not sure if that speed setting is available on the airplane version of APM.  But I did end up working with that configuration in the multi rotor version.  

      Here is my email for the file: 

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