October 2008 Blog Posts (35)

Getting Started With Paparazzi

I think for the hobbyist, the only real choice is an open source autopilot. Unfortunately with a closed source solution, you are stuck with the feature set that the developer wants you to have. Another major advantage of open source autopilots is that reading the source code is a valuable learning, and troubleshooting tool. Even if you never intend to modify the code, just being able to look at it can be enough to resolve a problem.

In my… Continue

Added by Cory on October 31, 2008 at 11:30am — 16 Comments

VicaCopter 2.0 4 U

Decided to put VicaCopter 2.0 on vicacopter.com. This is the last version for single rotor copters. It's mainly a reference, since no-one will probably ever replicate it.

This version uses ground based autopilot & has the most detailed schematics of them all. Embedded computers were never cheap & never provided enough computing power. The high cost of sub micro servos, rapid servo wear, difficult payload mounting, & tail rotor effects were counting down the T-Rex clock. A… Continue

Added by Jack Crossfire on October 31, 2008 at 12:30am — 1 Comment

List of suggested skills for someone who wants to DIY a DRONE

I made this non exhaustive list of skills which are nice to have if you want to build your own UAV.

I think a basic handle on all of these skills will greatly help anyone who wants to build a UAV. If you want to build a UAV, and lack a lot of these skills, don't take this to mean you cannot do it, just understand the magnitude of the difficulty, and be prepared to press on in the face of adversity and to teach yourself a lot. When I decided to build a UAV, I had never even flown an… Continue

Added by Cory on October 29, 2008 at 7:46pm — 7 Comments

3D Robotics
Cool Parallax Propeller-powered quadrotor

Yet another IMU using Paralax's powerful 8-core Propeller chip. This one on a home-built quadrotor. Flying in IMU-assisted manual mode now, although I assume autonomous is just a matter of evolving the…

Added by Chris Anderson on October 29, 2008 at 8:37am — No Comments

Hello from Ireland

Hi Folks

A quick note to introduce myself, I have been RC flying since I was a kid, recently I made the jump into electrics after years of tinkering with IC engines. I like designing and flying (sometimes!) my own SPAD planes also. I have been playing around with Spad FPV and camera platforms. Mainly building the plane around the camera.

I am trying to understand the technical and electronic aspects of DIY Uav’s. I found this site very useful in getting to grips in… Continue

Added by Huey on October 29, 2008 at 6:46am — No Comments

3D Robotics
New: BlimpDuino board version 5

BlimpDuino is in the hands of beta testers, so we're doing some last minute tweaks. The current code works on boards version 431 and up (don't ask about the numbering schemes--they're based on internal versions. When we release the commercial board, it will be called V1.0 as… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 28, 2008 at 12:30pm — 4 Comments


Yes..thats right. I have eventually developed all the above said techies in a past few months...A very thanks to DIY for the help i've found in posts and digging stuff sround on the site.

So, inow finally have a EM-406 based Autopilot.

Gps runs in NMEA but now i've hooked up to Binary(WOW i dint beliv its gonna be that straight....beliv me guys binary is far simpler as much we thot its difficult).

It sends data to Autopilot (self made) which uses AVR atmega16

I used… Continue

Added by Geetesh Dubey on October 27, 2008 at 3:13pm — 18 Comments

Reading XRX PCAS

Hi, everyone.
Im trying to read the information from a XRX trough the rs 232 connector. Does anybody know how is that information arranged, or baud rate used. I just couldnt figure out the signal that the XRX is transmitting.

Added by Carlos Mojarro on October 27, 2008 at 11:31am — 2 Comments

3D Robotics
Finally! BlimpDuino code now in beta!

Jordi's done some heroic work squeezing the maximum out of the Arduino platform (with some help from Arduino co-founder Massimo Banzi. We finally have a code base that does everything it's supposed to. Here's the code. It works with any version of the board… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 26, 2008 at 10:00am — 9 Comments

Airspace integration, what you can do…


Open to any other suggestions folks might have.

Added by Patrick Egan on October 25, 2008 at 9:25am — 22 Comments

Where'd I Go...

okay, i suddenly had a burst of energy towards this project, and then SUDDENLY, i disappear for a few weeks. What the hell right?

For those of you who haven't been paying attention to Hard forums deals, or wanted ot build a new computer, two things arose that grabbed my attention, and my bank account. For those of you building a computer, listen up, because the price keeps going up...

MS cashback is giving 30% off of any BIN ebay items. this is great.

We found… Continue

Added by Genesis Factor on October 21, 2008 at 2:00am — No Comments

3D Robotics
New 4Hz GPS receiver from SparkFun

If you've been wanting to move to a >1Hz GPS receiver but were holding out until a retail version of the awesome U-blox chipset was available, today's your lucky day. Sparkfun has just started selling the 4Hz GS406, which uses a helical antenna,… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 19, 2008 at 7:11pm — 11 Comments

BlimpDuino Fly test (Video)...

This is a quick video of Blimpduino, just void my voice comments =P, the motors are little bit unbalanced, the left one is pushing harder, nothing that can't be solved by software =).
Is holding altitude with PID...

Hardware version: 4.3.1
Software version: 4.2.1 beta

Added by Jordi Muñoz on October 19, 2008 at 1:30am — No Comments

3D Robotics
New BlimpDuino code--much more efficient!

Jordi's been hard at work on the BlimpDuino code. Here's the latest version, which he describes as follows:

"Wow, a lot to explain! I added a lot of interesting functions, it will blow your mind ;-)

First I added a smart delay system. If you need to delay() something you can use the smart_delay(1000) function, and it will delay the value between the () and spend the time capturing IR packets rather than… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 18, 2008 at 4:30pm — No Comments

How to make gps data unbreakable? ( maybe a tip?)

I was wondering why chris and jordy use binary gps format, because I didn't know the instability of getting gps data then.

I'm using gps module that has MTK chipset so I can't use arduipilot binary gps parser.

There has been periodic breaking of gps data. But I can't get rid of it for a while

Today I realize the problem comes from the speed difference between gps module and arduino.

Periodic breaking of gps data arises only when arduino do the other… Continue

Added by MrKiss on October 18, 2008 at 12:00am — 1 Comment


Hey guys,
this isn't a UAV post. I just wanted to point you at an inspirational RC aircraft site from a guy near me. His write ups are amazing, the level of detail and lists of all hardware is brilliant.
Check out Don's experimental projects once you've seen his aircraft videos.


This jet video rocks,


Added by Edan on October 17, 2008 at 9:00pm — No Comments

3D Robotics
New Arduino starter kit

For those of you interested in learning about embedded computing with a modern, open source platform, the new Arduino Starter Kit from O'Reilly looks great. $89 buys a lot of useful stuff.

OReilly's also releasing a new book by Arduino co-founder Massimo Banzi that looks… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 16, 2008 at 1:27pm — No Comments

more airbus insanity

Everyone knows Air Busses have problems, from the 2001 crash due to rudder failure to the 1988 takeoff crash on GooTube, so no surprise that the latest sudden 650ft descent of an aircraft was an Air Bus whose IMU malfunctioned & sent out an erratic orientation.

What a thrill that our home made IMU & autopilot can be at least as reliable as the world's largest, low bidding, government subsidized passenger airline manufacturer's. Our IMU has drifted from vibration but never… Continue

Added by Jack Crossfire on October 15, 2008 at 11:00am — 7 Comments

3D Robotics
60 Minutes on how UAVs won the battle for Sadr City

A little rah-rah, but interesting all the same. The UAV part starts at… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 13, 2008 at 1:00pm — No Comments

3D Robotics
AttoPilot flight tracks

Just to whet your appetite more for the soon-to-be-released AttoPilot. Here are some of Dean's recent GPS tracks from autonomous flight with a flying wing. Very… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on October 11, 2008 at 10:18am — 8 Comments

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