I was reminded by the Pict'Earth guys last weekend that one of the best all-purpose planes for carrying cameras, GPS recorders and any other sort of equipment you want to test is the Multiplex EasyStar, a virtually unbreakable powered glider. Because it's made of elastopore foam you can carve out the equipment compartment to carry pretty much anything you want, and the same foam protects everything in case of a "hard landing".

EasyStars are available for $54 without the radio equipment. This post is just a quickie to show you what else you'll need top make them good UAV platforms.

Although the kit comes with a brushed motor, I suggest you upgrade to a brushless so you can carry heavier loads with ease. This motor is a perfect fit and has power to spare. I matched it with this ESC. As always, you'll want Li-Ion batteries if you can afford them. An 11.1v, 2200 mAh pack will allow you to fly for more than half an hour under power. A 6x4 prop fits perfectly

For a radio, almost anything with six channels or more will do. The EasyStar has compartments pre-cut for servos; the HITec HS81s fit them best.

Finally, here's an important point. With the more powerful brushless motor, you'll find that rudder is really too small to be effective. You need to make it bigger to increase its "authority", which both helps in more extreme moves and at slow speed. The easiest way is to glue or double-sided-tape two business cards to the rudder. Here's a picture of one such mod (I didn't bother to trim mine as neatly as this guy did):

Once you've done all that you can shove all manners of cameras and such in the equipment area. If you don't want to carve holes in the bottom, you can always just bolt a camera to a bit of wood and strap it to the top, like this.

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Comment by Peter Seddon on May 11, 2010 at 2:54am

Try these for all things Multiplex in the UK http://www.modelspot.com/kit-only-9-c.asp

The standard kit for many Multiplex models includes a brushed motor.

Comment by PatrickD on May 24, 2010 at 4:11pm

Do we need to add ailerons for the easystar for it to work with the new ardumega+oilpan?



3D Robotics
Comment by Chris Anderson on May 24, 2010 at 4:21pm
@PatrickD: No. The IMU can work with rudder-only, too.
Comment by PatrickD on May 24, 2010 at 4:28pm
Thanks for the answer Chris. However, will it work better with added ailerons?
Comment by mark on May 28, 2010 at 9:23am
What's the best place to buy this in the US? I can't find it for ~$50
Comment by Jeremy Zawodny on October 24, 2010 at 11:54am
@Chris thanks for putting this together. I finally took the plunge and started ordering parts today. I can't wait to start flying and hacking on it.

3D Robotics
Comment by Chris Anderson on October 24, 2010 at 12:59pm
Welcome Jeremy! Great to see you here...let me know how it goes. Happy to help if you run into any issues.
Comment by Andre B. on January 11, 2011 at 8:02am

thank you very much! I just put together my hk order list and i am wondering, if i need any mounting stuff / spinner / whatever (and which one) for mounting the prop on the suggested engine. May you help me with this issue?

best regards and thank you,


Comment by John_NY on January 11, 2011 at 8:43am

@AndreB - I'm also building an EasyStar drone.  According to some suggestions I used a 6x4 3-blade pusher prop (Tower) and a 2200kev motor (HK).  As a total newbie I did not know I needed something to mount the prop, but I eventually bought a Great Planes Collet Prop Adapter 3.175mm to 5mm (Tower).  It seems to be mounted okay, but I have not yet flown.



Comment by Andre B. on January 11, 2011 at 8:56am


thank you very much for your answer. It seams that we do have the same »problems« ;-) Why did you use a 3 blade prop? shouldn't the diameter be smaller when using more blades?

thank you very much – andre


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