Successful tests flights of the ArduCopter v2.0.51



Hello to All,

I have done successful tests flights with the version of the ArduCopter v2.0.51 (original firmware version, not modified). I have used a hands build quadcopter frame (550 mm wide) . In spite of the windy and gusty weather (wind 18 Km/h gusting 22 Km/h), I have been very suprised by the stability of my quadcopter with this new firmware (thanks to Jason and to the DIY Drones team).

I have tested some features such as: STABILIZE, SIMPLE, LOITER, ALT HOLD. All these modes works very well after a fine tuning.

You will find below my PID setup:

You may download My working PID setup parameters

Below some technical details about my quadcopter:

Hardware Setup:
- ArduMega 2560 + IMU Shield
- HMC5843 magnetometer
- GPS Mediatek MTK 16 (10 Hz)
- firmware Arducopter V2.0.51 (original version)

- Receiver: Turnigy 9X8C v2
- Transmitter: Turnigy 9x

- four brushless motors RC Timer BC-2836/11 (750 KV)
- two CW propellers  12 x 4.5
- two CCW propellers 12 x 4.5
- fours ESC 40A RC Timer speed controller
- one Lipo battery 3S Turnigy Nano-Tech 2200 mAh

- Take Off Weight (TOW): 988 g (without payload)

- Flight time: about 10 min

You will find a full photos album at:

more infos at:

Views: 3451

Comment by Dragos Ruiu on November 27, 2011 at 10:19am
What is that massive capacitor doing?

Comment by Jean-Louis Naudin on November 27, 2011 at 10:26am

Hello Dragos,

The 4700 µF capacitors is connected to a free PPM output of the 2.4 Ghz receiver between the + and -. It is commonly used to avoid that some drops of voltage reset the receiver and thus put it in failsafe mode. I use a such capacitor in all my RC models which uses a 2.4 Ghz receiver.

Regards, Jean-Louis

Comment by Amit on November 27, 2011 at 12:24pm

Did you have any problem without the capacitor?

Comment by Jean-Louis Naudin on November 27, 2011 at 1:29pm

Hello Amit,

The capacitor is only used as voltage protector to prevent some eventual drops of voltage (+5V) and it is optionnal... this works without the 4700 µF capacitor.

here some examples for Spektrum and Turnigy receivers:

Regards, Jean-Louis

Comment by Jean-Louis Naudin on November 27, 2011 at 1:49pm

Here my APM_Config.h file that I have used successfully,

Regards, Jean-Louis


// Tested in flight Config file for ArduCopter v2.0.51 - nov 27, 2011 - JL Naudin

// GPS is auto-selected





#define ACCEL_ALT_HOLD 1  

#define RTL_YAW    YAW_HOLD

#define USERHOOK_50HZLOOP userhook_50Hz();
#define USERHOOK_INIT userhook_init();
#define USERHOOK_VARIABLES "UserVariables.h"


Comment by F5PQL on November 27, 2011 at 2:58pm


I have exactly the same as you, except a 4000mA rechargeable batteryand has an endurance of 12 minutes. bizarre, this difference of autonomy.



Comment by Jean-Louis Naudin on November 27, 2011 at 11:28pm

Hello John,

I have connected to the 12V PDB, a Lipo battery warning LBW (see the photo below). I have decided to stop flying when the LBW begins to blink (for safety reason and avoiding the deadly flip at low voltage), after a 8 min flight there is about 20% in the Lipo battery. So, with the 3S Nano Tech 2200 mAh the max flight time is about 10 min. 

May be that your 4000 mAh Lipo has a higher internal resistance than the Nano Tech battery. So the power drops more quickly. Another reason is that your 4000 mAh Lipo is heavier than the 2200 mAh Lipo so you need more power to lift your quadcopter.

Regards, Jean-Louis

Comment by on November 28, 2011 at 1:23am

Yeah having a 2x bigger battery does not always equate to having 2x more endurance.


Otherwise nice work with your arducopter flight.  Do you have any videos?

Comment by steve on November 28, 2011 at 4:37am

I'm flying a 3DR frame with stock motors and 10" carbon reinforced props that I just put on yesterday. They are so much better than the plastic ones. It is much more stable and responsive and less noisy and I think creates less vibration.


I'm using a castle 10A BEC and prefer to use a 5000 nanotech 4S. I like the extra voltage for getting quick out of situations. After flying a lot with 4S, I find the 3S feels very weak. The frame is heavier than yours I suspect and the battery is probably twice the weight and I get 16 minutes before my battery warning beeps which is about 15V.


I plan to add a gopro with pan/roll and will lower the battery mAh to keep the weight the same. Maybe 30004S.



Comment by Jean-Louis Naudin on November 28, 2011 at 5:20am

Yes I fully agree, higher the voltage of the Lipo better is the efficiency. 4S is better than 3S Lipo. I use 6S Lipo to lift off my big E-glider.

Regards, Jean-Louis


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