Riccardo Kuebler's Posts (15)

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Autopilot assisted thermalling exploitation

Hello ensemble,

this is a flight done with the Proxima II, using a UAVDevBoard v4 for autopilot assisted thermal exploitation.

Telemetry on screen is done with DashWare. I had to create a profile for UDB to use the telemetry file with that program and had to adapt a few gauges also. The profile is attached, in the case someone needs it.

Plane was flown around sometime to catch a good thermal and put then in autonomous flight. Just a loiter programmed with LOGO. At the top the thermal was so strong that it was a little bit hard to bring the glider down without destroying it in flight.

In a previous thermal I had to reposition the plane to center the thermal again. That simply requires to come off from autonomous mode, reposition and switch autonomous mode again.

Nice to watch GPS speed vs. airspeed as well as pitch.

Additional hardware: ChannelWizard

On screen instruments provided by DashWare.
Instruments from left are:
- GPS speed (SOG)
- IMU computed airspeed
- GPS satellites number
- autopilot mode (110 stabilized, 111 autonomous)
- GPS computed acceleration
- IMU pitch
- vertical wind speed
- altitude from start point
- altitude above sea

Best regards,



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New materials to build moulded planes


Hello ensemble,

It is sometime now I'm developing planes, mostly gliders, to suit my personal taste.

Out of curiosity I started to use some new materials to learn something new.

As a first attempt I did build two fuselages for a plank, called Trisel.

Those are respectively prototypes #5 and #6.

The first fuselage is done in Flax fabric (Eco_Trisel), two 220g/m² layers and a third one on the nose.

The result is a very stiff, hard and heavy fuselage, probably well suited for slope and hard use.

The material is thick and resin hungry, 1.5-2 times the amount needed for fiberglass.

I leaved the surface natural for show purpose, but a layer of transparent gelcoat revealed to be mandatory. The fabric is so hungry that it seems always dry and there are several pinholes.


The second fuselage is done in basalt fabric (therefore the name: Volcanic_Trisel).

It is composed from a 110g/m² plain, 220g/m² twill and a third layer of 220g/m² on a 45° bias.

This one is very thin instead, the lighter of all six prototypes, stiff enough. Not comparable to Flax, but almost as fiberglass or even better, considering it is really thin and light.

This fabric wets very well and epoxy usage was about 2/3 of a fiberglass one and 1/3 of the Flax one.

Weight is 100g, vs. 120-130g of fiberglass and 160 (!) of Flax.

Next step could be using vegetal based epoxy =;D

P1030702.JPGP1030701.JPGP1030703.JPGBest regards,


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DIY vario and head tracker


I build a couple of DIY electronic devices from open source projects.


I thought those could be useful to someone here on DIYDrones and they deserve a little visibility here too.

They are based on Arduino Nano and very cheap to build.

In this video I'm using both for the first time, with my work horse: the UavDevBoard3 equipped FunCub.

One is a variometer, developed and programmed by Kapteinkuk:




One is a drift free headtracker developed and programmed by Dennis Frie:



Many thanks to Kapteinkuk and Dennis Frie for developing sharing their work.

Best regards,




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Hi all, sorry if this is a little off topic, but sometimes I need to cut foam cores to build planes.

So finally I decided to put together a little tool to calculate the position of the fixed position of the hot wire, in the case of one man work.

This way it is possible to cut foam cores alone, using only one airfoil template.

Here is a screenshot :

It should be correct, but if someone find something wrong, please tell me and I will fix it.

I thought this could be useful to some one, so here is it.


Best regards

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Hi all,


after a lot of research, programming, setting and tuning, I'm proud to announce that my Proxima II went in flight.



It was already, but without any autopilot, only to set the right controls, trims, CG and wings angle of attack.

Now it is fully autonomous. This is the more complex autopilot equipped plane I ever build.


Here you can see the plane in full action.





In this video there is a demonstration of the controls possibilities.




The pilot has the following controls over the plane :

  • throttle
  • elevator
  • rudder
  • ailerons, differential !
  • flaps, with those functions : thermal flaps, crow flaps
  • autopilot mode
  • coming next will be camera pan / tilt and camera mode controls

Possibilities are :

  • roll control over two (ailerons) or four surfaces (ailerons and flaps)
  • camber control over four surfaces (I could program it over two surfaces too, but actually I don't need it)
  • crow flaps, with roll control over two or four surfaces
  • fine trimming of both ailerons and flaps for roll or camber


About the plane :

Proxima II, 2.78m, Selig 3021 (Reichard)

MVVS 3.5 / 1200

Castle Creations ICE 50A ESC

Thomas Scherrer RC system

UavDevBoard 4 stabilization / autopilot unit

And finally an amazing board that allowed me to have all those functions mixed with the autopilot.

FpvKiwi Channel Wizard






This mixer is incredibly flexible in programming.

It is fed with PPM stream from RC rx. The UDB is daisy chained to it and feeds back to it again ailerons control for stabilization and autonomous flight.

Here are the schematics of all the connections :






Here you can watch some more pictures of the plane.

Next plans are to mount a video system and use it as an FPV platform, for long time flying using thermals.


This plane is dedicated to Bill Premerlani, as a tribute to him for starting this amazing adventure, for all the improvements he achieved and for letting me the privilege to travel a short distance on this long road with him.

Thank you Bill !


Best regards,



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Hi all,

MatrixPilot quad_testing code begins to be funny to fly :)

In the video you can see a flight with the code at r1158. It is very stable and reliable. Controls are very smooth.

The quadrocopter is an Arducopter frame equipped with UavDevBoard4. No GPS, no other sensors are used at the moment. The only available mode is Fly By Wire for now.

Many thanks to Bill Premerlani and his fast implementing of his great research and development work on this subject.

Performances are growing up very quickly.

Best regards,


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Two planes and one pilot ?



yes, I did it : pilot two planes at the same time :p



The main plane is a FunCub equipped with UavDevBoard and on board tracking video camera.

The second plane is a stock EasyStar, carrying another UavDevBoard, only to send its position.

I took off with the FunCub and put it in autonomous mode. Me having in my hands two RC transmitters, my son kindly launched for me the EasyStar and I drove it all the flight long.

The hardest part was try to stay in the camera turret range. The FunCub speed is set to 50km/h, but even at this speed it is a challenge to follow it and stay in front, with a fully stock EasyStar.

At the end of the flight (FunCub autonomy), my son asked to land his plane :)

I landed the FunCub.


Many thanks to Bill Premerlani, Ben Levitt and Pete Hollands for great continuous support and all the smart UavDevBoard community ...


Best regards,



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trying to help a developer (Ben Levitt) to track down a bug on my UavDevBoard system, it was hard to explain by email the strange behavior.

After he suggested me to try with a sound card oscilloscope, I decided to try something I was planning from sometime now : a soundcard oscilloscope.

I build a voltage divider to scale down PWM voltage (3.3V) to about 0.7V, which is more suitable for a PC audio input.

I crimped a couple of cables with servo connectors on one side and a stereo mini jack, from a boken headphone on the other side.

The interface is double channel capable, but some PC (like my laptop) only has mono input.

On the picture above you can see a double channel PWM signal from two different UavDevBoard outputs.


As soundcard oscilloscope I use Zelscope, which is ridiculously cheap, and Visual Analyser, which is free instead.


Here you can find a little tutorial, with schematics and pictures, I did about all that.


Best regards,



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Hi all,


just in case someone should be interested using a FunCub I posted a couple of videos showing some flight excerpts.


FunCub flight excerpts from Riccardo Kuebler on Vimeo.

Glider towing with a FunCub from Riccardo Kuebler on Vimeo.


In the first I do some aerobatics.

In the second we do an Easyglider tow.


Plane is still not equipped with any autopilot, but this could help if someone is wondering about it. There is plenty of room available for everything.


Motor is Turnigy TR 35-42D 1000kv with APC 12x6

I use a Turnigy 60A ESC. It's quiet exaggerated. I will swap with a 50A that's more than enough.

Servos are for elevator and rudder Hitec HS81, ailerons and flaps MKS DS460, tow a Turnigy DS480 (only because I had it laying around).

Current is 35A with 3300-3s lipo.


Model climbs vertically at half throttle. You can see it in the videos.

I still don't know if I will use it as a drone with autopilot or FPV or both, affaire à suivre ...


Best regards,



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A minimum cable solution for UAV DevBoard

I hate all those cables invading our little planes !
I like the german expression which describes this situation : "Kabelsalat".
I'm sorry that still no one uses PPM connections (yes, this receiver has a PPM out on channel 12).

This is then the best solution I found to minimize the amount of cables to connect the receiver to the UDB.
The connection includes 5 channels in (throttle, ailerons, elevator, rudder and autopilot mode), receiver feeding, a board to connect pan/tilt camera servos for autonomous targeting firmware, extra servos feeding.

Please note that the connections are on the bottom of the UDB board. I modified the pins to use the UDB with the Oilpan, but in this case I'm not using it (the Oilpan).

Here is the complete connection.

All the system is feeded by the throttle out / ESC BEC (already extensively tested on my Arcus, in the standard "Kabelsalat" layout).

It could be simpler but for the moment I'm using a board I already made.

I crimp all the cables myself. This way I can have the exact length I want, avoiding unuseful extra copper on board.

After that it remains to connect servos, eventually telemetry (another 3 poles cable to a logger or OSD or ...), eventually a magnetometer (4 poles cable).

Hope this will help some and stimulate some others ;)

Best regards,


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Hi all,

here is a full autonomous flying Funjet.

It is equipped with :

- motor Turnigy 2836 with APC 4.1x4.1

Best performances are:

- maximum speed over 200Km/h. In the attached log file you can see, at line 587, H ground speed 53.06m/sec (191Km/h), M estimated airspeed 61.59m/sec (221Km/h). I have several flight logs with ground speed over 55m/sec

- acceleration at launch 0-100 <2.75sec. You can see it in the attached log file, considering that the plane is launched at line 370 and reaches 28.6m/sec (102Km/h) at line 381. Telemetry refresh is at 4Hz.

Full autonomous flights

You can see in the log files that I launched the plane in autonomous mode and it landed in autonomous mode (row B status 111)
In the Google Earth file you can see the entire flight with colored autonomous legs.

This is a picture of one of the launchs :

Those are the logs of the autonomous flights:

LOG00044 Flight 2167.csv

LOG00044 Flight 2167a.txt.kmz

LOG00045 Flight 2168a.txt.csv

LOG00045 Flight 2168a.txt.kmz

For those flights, autonomous throttle was limited at 50%. The plane still reaches >40m/sec !

If you play a little with the files, you can have magnetometer behavior and wind estimation shown in GE, thanks Pete Hollands great telemetry tool.

Today I did a flight and was able to take a short video. The plane is flying full autonomous, the pilot being occupied with videocam. Enjoy it :D

Autonomous Funjet from Riccardo Kuebler on Vimeo.

A big thanks is due to the developers and programmers for continuous work, help, encouragement and appreciations.

Thank you:

- Bill Premerlani

- Pete Hollands

- Adam Barrow

- Ben Levitt

A big thanks too to Rana, who was the first which encouraged me here, and Morli for continuous input and sympathy.

Best regards,


Edit : 28.6.10 added a video

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Great Pete Holland's camera stabilization/tracking firmware

Arcus IMU with camera stabilization firmware test #10 from Riccardo Kuebler on Vimeo.

Hi all,

I made several flights with Pete's great camera stabilization/tracking firmware. Those video are not of high quality
and only of technical interest.
I would make a video of better quality, but at the moment it is not possible. It will come in the near future.
From the other side it is a shame not let others know about this and share those video with this great UDB performance.

Iwould like to thanks Pete for developing this firmware, for his great
support when I was testing it and for the nice moments toasting at the

Video are here:

Test #1

Test #2

Test #3

Test #5

Test #6

Test #10 (title video)

Best regards,

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Acromaster as UAVDevBoard platform


here are some experiences with Bill Premerlani amazing UAVDevBoard on a Multiplex Acromaster.

Here is a video that shows the impressive ability of this device with Ben Levitt pattern stabilization firmware:

UAVDevBoard stabilized Acromaster from Riccardo Kuebler on Vimeo.

The plane, base components:

Acromaster with Apache 30/14T AR
ESC Castle Creation Phoenix 45
Lipo 4S 3600mAh
Propeller APC 12x6
Servos 4x Hitec HS81MG
ACT S3D 2.4GHz 4+2 RC rx

IMU upgrade:

Xbee Pro
A123 2S 1300mAh

Here is the options.h file with my actual settings:


Here is a spreadsheet with the commented history of the settings:

Logbook Acromaster.xls

This is a great work from all the developers and programmers (hardware: Bill Premerlani, Tom Posey; firmware:Bill Premerlani, Adam Barrow, Adam Bellchambers, Pete Holland, Ben Levitt; Aerobatics stabilization firmware: Ben Levitt; and all the fantastic rest of the team).

Best regards,


1st edit 7.2.10:
link added for autopilot devices, video embedded
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