Indoor fun with a tiny ArduCopter quadcopter

Do you have an Ardupilot Mega and shield and want some fun for little money? check this tiny quad... my last drone in family...

Some specs:
- Size : 26.5cm (10.4 inches) from motor to motor
- Motors : 18-11 200kv 10 gram motors
- Props : 4x2.5 (standard CCW props)
- ESCs : Turnigy 6A
- Battery : 3S610 (or 3S800)
- Sonar : Maxbotics LV-EZ0 [optional]

The nice part about this frame is that it use standard kite parts, so it´s very easy to construct and it´s perfect for some radical tests.
I tried to find a bit different design that also make the quad less simmetrical (it´s very easy to loss the orientation with a quad) and I wanted to do as small as posible to flight indoors...
At this size and weight it´s very safe and robust also. The props use prop savers and this help a lot in crashes...
I am not very good writing... so I took a lot of photos during the build phase and I created a build log:

This code supports a sonar for altitude hold and also has a battery alarm (2 alarms).
This quad works with ArduCopter code, but because how main board is mounted, actual code doesn´t work. This is the code that I used with this quad :
(as zip format: )
note that this will be integrated on main Arducopter code. Now is temporarily in a branch.
The PID gains are different than in standard ArduCopter, so you need to Initialize EEPROM on Configurator or put this ones manually:
-Stable mode: P : 4.8 ; I : 0.12 ; P_rate (D in configurator) : 0.4 ; Yaw : (4.5 ,0.15 ,2.8 )
-Acrobatic mode : P : 0.75 ; I : 0.1 ; D : 0 ; Yaw : (2.4 ,0.2 ,0 )

OK, but was all so perfect like in the video? I don´t believe that...
Yes, you are right, but fortunately this design is very crash resistance... and this part is also fun...

After all this battles I only needed a few drops of ciano in the crash with the lamppost :-)

What´s the real size?

On center, standard arducopter frame, on left, old ArduIMU quadcopter part III, on right-top this project.

And what about the automatic aerobatics on video?
I am starting to test a new function to do automatic aerobatics (Automatic Aerobatic Procedure). The idea is that you enable this function with a switch in the Tx to make an automatic predefined aerobatic and then automatically recover to a stable mode.
This is actually a proof of concept but works very nice. One limit here is the maximun rate of the gyros, in our case 500deg/s. If we exceed this, the IMU get confused...
An interesting point to note is that the IMU doesn´t loose the orientation in this hard movements...
The story is that I have never feel too much confidence doing flips manually with quads. Then I start thinking that with an automatic code we can get a precise timing and controled movement so maybe this could help to do better aerobatics. I started testing this function outdoor, on an open field but I was improving the code and got more tightly maneuvers, so tight, that I ended up doing flips with a quad inside my room!!!

Here is the code I was testing : (AAP function:
AAP.txt )
I implemented this functionality as a state machine where there are three kind of states:
- fixed commands for a limited period of time. (example : Apply a throttle command)
- fixed commands until we reach some IMU state (example : roll until we reach a certain angle)
- And a mix between this categories and a control (example : Throttle command + stable mode on roll, pitch, yaw)
There are many things to test and improve here but the basic concept works very nice...

If I can get a bit of help from a friend, I will probably made a carbon fuselage for this prototype...

Enjoy this “Science & Fun” mix...

Jose Julio.
Arducopter Team

Views: 41816

Comment by Juan Enrique Martin Boix on November 16, 2010 at 6:03am
Wait ,wait ..the JJfanclub is my trademark.:))))))))
Comment by Ravi Gaddipati on November 16, 2010 at 6:38am
That is awesome.

Any thoughts on making it a bit more practical, like flinging itself through a partially open door or window?
Comment by Chandan Roy on November 16, 2010 at 7:54am
That was jus awesome....
The elevator part was quite funny...when ur friend wid the camera was running upstairs... :P

Comment by Jose Julio on November 16, 2010 at 12:20pm
@Doug, I buy the parts on a sport store that has kite parts. I used standard kite kits (standard sizes).
@ Juan Enrique : jaja, para cuando una cervecita?, y el ultimo parrafo estaba dedicado a ti... jaja
@ Ravi, we would need good sensors to do that...
Comment by Yun Youngjun on November 16, 2010 at 5:29pm
You did good job again jose!!
very nice

Comment by Brian on November 16, 2010 at 9:02pm
I'm fixed wing all the way, but DAMN! I want...
Comment by Juan Enrique Martin Boix on November 17, 2010 at 4:16am

Comment by Jose Julio on November 17, 2010 at 3:16pm
Hey Yun, nice to hear from you...
you are the quickest developer...
Comment by Sebastian Gralla on November 17, 2010 at 3:37pm
good frame design
i ordered exactly these motors last week, I think I will use these kite parts

thanks for the idea
Comment by John Ihlein on November 18, 2010 at 6:18am
Is there a brand or a part number on the kite fittings, I've found the angular parts but can't find the joiner part or the parts used for the motor mounts.

Similarly, who makes/markets the 10 gram motors?

Thanks for publishing this, great work!



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