Bixler Plane setup with ArduPilot

I finished building my Bixler plane and did some test flights.  I was just flying in an anticlockwise circle with these tests (I have not been flying a plane for almost over a year and my last flight ended in a crash).  Yet with the ArduPilot flying is very much more easy.....  Landing is a breeze....


I am more familier with the heli's (multirotors, Quad, Hexa and Octa) but believe this plane could also be helpful to me in FPV flying.


Still learning the trade.....and love the ArduPilot projects.

I think the ArduCopter, ArduPlane.....ect.... Teams are Great people.

On this occasion I only tested the Stabilize mode but will do more testing (waypoints, RTL....) soon.









Motor Turnigy2836 brushless Outrunner 2350kv

Prop 6x4


4400mA 3 cell Battery

default parameters for Bixler frame.

ArduPlane 2.24 firmware.


Flying weight with this big battery and GoPro Camera is about 1.25kg and it was still flying smoothly.  The motor and prop gives about 1kg of thrust (according to some info I got).

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  • Next will be to test Auto (waypoint navigation), yet I believe it will also work perfectly.

  • I tested both Loiter and RTL and it works perfectly.

    I can only recommend to do the following setting in APM_Config.h


    else you plane will always try to fly at 100m in RTL which is to high for me.


  • The chassis is actually for an Easy Star! I purchased if before the Bixler one became available. That and because of a few nose "landings" Ive had to modify it a little to fit. Ive always had the AirSpeed board so cant comment on the difference of not having one, apart from the fact it looks cooler!! The Chassis makes it easy to install/remove everything from the Bixler. This is the Pitot Tube mount I use.

    This is part of a bigger project im working on that will require autonomous take off and landing. The AirSpeed & Magnetometer will assist in achieving this. The AirSpeed is supposed to help in windy conditions too. An unstable AirSpeed reading did help me discover a "Funky ESC" which was only supplying a noisy 4.5v to my receiver and APM via the BEC.


    The Bixler flys well with the GoPro on the nose. I place the battery (Turnigy 2200mah) well back under the wings to balance it out. It's centre of gravity is around 4cm back from the wing's leading edge.  I use the waterproof back plate to reduce motor noise. Here is a video of a test flight.

    Like you I havn't tested in auto mode yet but my Bixler is now ready to go. Just waiting for the rain to stop! Cheers


  • Can somebody also just explain to me why is it also possible to mount a magnetometer to the Ardupilot?  I can understand for the Arducopter that you need the magnetometer, but what is the advantage of having it also on a plane setup?

  • To Warren again,

    When you put your Camera mount on the nose is the Plane still balanced properly?  I suspect that you have less problems with the plane's nose in the camera view but is the plane still stable with the weight in the nose?

  • To Warren,

    I see you are using the Bixler electronic Chassis from DIYDRONES store.   That looks very good.  You are also using the Ardupilot Shield kit for airspeed measurements.  Is that working better then using just the GPS speed for Auto Pilot mode?  I am thinking of getting such a kit but not sure if its really making a big difference?

  • This is the setup on my Bixler.


  • To Warren, I had to use a motor mount and modify it a bit to make it fit (it is actually a little bit bigger then expected). Would like to test the plane soon in Auto and other modes. Keep you guys posted......

  • To Barak, Thanx. The black boxes on the side is my receiver (spektrum 7 channel and additional antenna). The black box at the top is my GoPro Mount for camera. Maybe I can mount the receiver in a better way but have not explore that yet....
  • Hey Hein, I'm liking your Motor & GoPro mount. Looking forward to seeing it in Auto. Well done.
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