Richard Evans's Blog (18)

Working on endurance options

I've been working on getting a better range and endurance. This QAV-540 weighs 5.5 lb's and I just flew it for 18 minutes today. Previously 16 minutes was my record, the change is that I went up one inch in prop size. This is not stripped down for endurance, I want something that will fly a long time…


Added by Richard Evans on January 18, 2014 at 6:30pm — 21 Comments

Some FPV (Cockpit View)


This is just run of the mill FPV flying, but I enjoy reviewing the fight for more than the visual perspective. Re-living the altitude, the roll and pitch, the rate of ascent and decent, the airspeed during the flight and the battery condition gives me a much fuller context than just viewing the HD video I was recording using my GoPro H3 Black.  Here is simple flyover of ready to be developed…


Added by Richard Evans on December 13, 2013 at 3:00pm — 4 Comments

Drones used in the Construction Industry

From the University of Texas in Austin, Texas, USA    

# note that there is a glimpse of architectural art piece in this video by James Turrell, Skyspace, 2013,  courtesy of Landmarks

I originally solicited other construction company users as to their ideas about using drones in the industry and to heat there experiences. This might not be the right venue for that, instead I got…


Added by Richard Evans on August 21, 2013 at 7:00pm — 1 Comment

Near miss at the beach

This weekend I took a couple of boys to the beach (family members) and wanted to get some video of them trying to surf and using a boogie board, (in some very poor surf conditions). Something unexpected happened, through the  low resolution of the goggles, I mistook some other kid and hovered up close.  As he turned to face me, I realized he wasn't the kid I was expecting and instead of a surfboard, he had a surf casting reel. He cast his lure at my…


Added by Richard Evans on July 23, 2013 at 3:00pm — 9 Comments

Flying by night

I don't get to spend enough time with my little flying friend when I only fly by day.. So I decided that since I work during the day, that I needed to equip my little flying friend to play at night. 

A low light camera and some lights to help me with location and orientation, and the mission planner and my video ground station all working together are extending my play time well into the night.  

In this video, it is so dark that you…


Added by Richard Evans on July 18, 2013 at 6:30pm — 8 Comments

Another diversion this morning..

I had an extra camera, antenna and video xmitter so, here is what I did with it.

This is my Composite ARF "Spark".  It is an electric EDF aircraft, weighs about 13 lb's, has about 11 lb's of thrust, uses's a 10s setup and draws about 94 amps at full throttle. Its easy to fly and will go in excess of 150…


Added by Richard Evans on June 23, 2013 at 7:30pm — 2 Comments

Hot in Texas

I took my Ardu copter out for a test flight to see if I have helped the stability with my latest attempt to tune some PID's.

It is definitely better, but I have an opportunity to make it better for sure. (I am slowly learning).

Anyway, I am gaining more confidence and so here is a video of a short FPV flight, recorded from my ground video station.

I enjoy looking at recorded video with the OSD info, I notice on this flight I get "Low…


Added by Richard Evans on June 23, 2013 at 5:26pm — 8 Comments

Flying IFR-FPV

I flew my Arducopter IFR-FPV Sunday!

It was pretty cool once I landed safely back at the takeoff point.

For various reasons which I won't go into, my video camera view became unusable 2 or 3  minutes into the FPV flight in my rural neighborhood, and I found that I had no idea where I…


Added by Richard Evans on June 12, 2013 at 7:25pm — 4 Comments

The future of GPS

Hopefully we have dodged the bullet and this post can be marked up as "paranoia"

Potential threat of GPS disablement!   I know this has been an ongoing issue for a while. A company called LightSquared has been trying to build a cellular network that interferes with GPS.  You don't hear much in the news about it these days, but it seems that maybe the…


Added by Richard Evans on April 23, 2013 at 6:30am — 10 Comments

Loitering around in calm air

The wind was calmer then it has been in months so I decided to see just how stable the Arducopter (2.5 APM, UBlox GPS) can be with the 2.9.1 code.

I was pleased, I could have hovered until the battery runs down. Also, landing while in Loiter is really smooth, much better than I could do flying in stable mode!. Just had flip the switch back to stable mode once down to finish the flight…


Added by Richard Evans on March 31, 2013 at 6:30pm — 4 Comments

Video Buddy Station

Here is something that I put together that is pretty simple, but nice to have..

I obtained a  9" LCD TV that runs on 12V DC and the idea was to provide a spotter a way to see what I am seeing while flying with my Fatshark goggles.

I use 5.8 GHZ for video and my goggles have a 5.8 GHZ…


Added by Richard Evans on March 19, 2013 at 8:23pm — 5 Comments

Integration of air traffic data?

   I wonder if it is a practical idea to integrate air traffic data with all the other data we track in the GCS and the OSD. Data seems to be available. I don't see a complete solution in hand but some pieces are there., It looks like there is a growing standard for position reporting (ADS-B) and you can buy a receiver that will allow you to track air traffic in the area. This will only track aircraft that are equipped with ADS-B, but that is in growing numbers and  is more…


Added by Richard Evans on February 3, 2013 at 6:00pm — 19 Comments

Got the OSD working

I blew up my first MinimOSD, and then received my second one, but didn't realize I needed the FTDI cable, so another week went by, but all is good now..

I received my FDTI cable from 3DR today, which i needed to get my MinimOSD loaded and working. Within minutes I had it working and configured. This is a great product and very inexpensive for all that it does! So, I am in a waiting mode for a good time to do another FPV flight, although I feel I should wait until 2.92., I will feel…


Added by Richard Evans on January 31, 2013 at 8:49pm — 2 Comments

2.9 for FPV

Got the eyes installed!

The camera bracket is attached with the bolt that secures the arm. This is a camera that 3DR sells that operates in low light and normal light and auto adjusts. I am anxious to do some night FPV flying.

I finally felt with 2.9 that I was ready to equip my Ardu-copter for FPV. I flew some test flights just line of sight in a confined area, and checked the stable mode and the loiter mode and the loiter mode was much…


Added by Richard Evans on January 27, 2013 at 6:00pm — 10 Comments

ArduCopter arrives

On the day the world ends (12-21-2012)

I got my box in from Udrones yesterday, haven't started setting it up or adding options yet, but I have begun familiarizing myself somewhat with how to proceed and found the online manual here. It is very comforting to know there is a very good source of help and documentation…


Added by Richard Evans on January 23, 2013 at 7:18pm — 9 Comments

To the Coast

I have an ideal opportunity this weekend to get some good video at the coast. I have been wanting to do this for months but the winds are almost always 15-20 MPH or more.

This weekend they were light and the sun was spectacular.  I used my DJI FW450 with the GoPro Black edition, and used a Sony camera as my flying cam and my fat shark glass's using 5.8 GHZ…


Added by Richard Evans on January 23, 2013 at 8:30am — 9 Comments

What I am up too

Currently operating my first UAV, a DJI 450 with standard equipment (motors, Esc, NAZA, GPS). I'm using a 9 channel JR receiver , EZOSD, 5000 MAH 45C battery pack, Sony 650 line camera with a  pitch axis adjustment that I fabricated that allows me to adjust from the ground, immersion 500 MW 5.8 GHZ transmitter, GoPro 3 Black, LED light system with controller. CF extended legs.

Ground equiment includes Fat Shark goggles with immersion 5.8GHZ receiver module, and a immersion 5.8 GHZ UNO…


Added by Richard Evans on December 18, 2012 at 7:53pm — 2 Comments

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