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A130STB's blog
Posted by A130STB | Oct 31, 2013 @ 05:06 PM | 1,886 Views
Here is some of the stuff I have owned over the years.

My first real model plane apart from balsa models was a largish rubber band powered model called a flugenspiel yes it was German, had long plastic fuse which held the rubber band which was made up of multiple strands of elastic which held the tail on and connected to the prop which free wheeled when the band could no longer provide power which in the mid 70's was cool. The wing span was about 4 feet and if it landed heavily the wings popped off, the wings were covered in a single sheet of acetate I think. It flew quite well from what I can remember.

Next I had 2 polystyrene gliders made by a british manufacturer cant rember who they were either hand launched or towed, the wing span was about 1.5 metres neither flew very well, the C of G was never right however much weight you put in the nose, one hit a tree and smashed in a lot of pieces the other I gave away to a kid on my street.

Flying and I left each other for few years until I got a job I then had a WOT four which I purchased second hand it had a huge OS 60 on the front and was stupid over powered, I couldnt get it off the ground and old friend of mine used to get it up in the air and then hand over to me. It finally dies an ignominous death at the hands of a goal post.

The next model I had was an Ambassador high wing trainer with an OS 40, built from a kit at that time I didnt know that kits should be built in a rig, it ended up with a slight twist in...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Oct 26, 2013 @ 02:28 PM | 1,568 Views
Greetings reader

Those outrunners you have hanging on the ends of your Multirotor need looking after especially the cheaper ones.

What do you mean the especially the cheaper ones I hear you ask none of them are cheap, I mean the sub 15 ones.

Here are the facts about cheaper motors, smaller gauge wire for windings, non sealed bearings.

So friends romans and country men, oh yeah wrong place I am not Julius caesar addressing the senate.

How to look after them

All outrunners rely on the windings one of the most common causes of failure or strange behaviour is where the windings are drawn out to connect to the ESC. I have had two Emax CF 2812's fail recently with the centre winding pickup breaking right where the wires exit the commutator, this showed up by the motor not starting but pulsing.

How to at least aleviate the strain on the cables I would suggest a dab of hot glue under the 3 taps as they come together this should not be huge lump as it could affect cooling, but will stop them moving to some extent

The next thing to look at is your bearings, does the motor run freely when spun or does it feel well gritty is the only things that comes to mind. If it does then you need to do the following.

Remove the circlip from the bottom and very carefully draw out the bell and shaft. You now need to carefully tap or draw out the bearings some suggest just wash the whole lot I personally dont hold with this. Clean each bearing with isopropol alchohol or...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Oct 17, 2013 @ 01:51 PM | 2,066 Views
I keep seeing the same reported problems coming up in the Quad forums.

1. I have one motor which doesn't start with the others
2. Sync issues with multiple motors
3. Motors which don't run correctly
4. Quad drops to one side or the other
5. Odd random behaviour

Having seen some of these issues myself

The cause is quite simply the fact that the ESC's need to be calibrated, when you install ESC's in a new model or an old one for that matter for the first time you must calibrate them!

Why you ask in any installation there are various thing which will influence the functioning of your ESC's difference in the wiring loom, connectors to the ESC's, connections to the motors these all affect the calibration.

So what to do

Firstly reduce the distance the electricty has to take from battery to motor, this reduces the overall resistance in the circuit and will in some cases may improve battery consumption.

Secondly if possible dont feed your FC from the ESC BEC if you can get away with it, if your are near the limits in amperage for an ESC reducing this load will give you a bit more leeway not a lot admittedly but every little helps.

Thirdly ensure you are not drawing to much current from your ESC's, check the current drawn with a meter before doing this REMOVE THE PROPS, check at 0%, 25%, 50%, 75% and Full throttle.

Forthly and this is normaly what will cure most issues, calibrate each and every ESC follow the manufacturers guide for this but here is...Continue Reading
Sticky: Motor mounts
Posted by A130STB | Oct 15, 2013 @ 03:37 PM | 1,902 Views
In trying to reduce every little vibration in my quad I noticed a slight cross lateral (CCW to CCW) vibration. When I examined the motor to mount fit using the following method.

Remove the motor and mount
Using a dry wipe board pen mark the base of the shaft
Place mount and motor on piece of white paper and turn the motorshaft

If there is sufficient clearance the paper will be clean, if you see a coloured dot on the paper then you need to move your motor slightly up the mount which is what I had to do.

Why do this, with the motor hard down in the mount there is the likelyhood that the shaft is running on whatever your motor sits on loosing power by having drag induced on the shaft a bit like having the handbrake on in the car.

This will cause drain on your battery, strain your motor and stress your bearings.

So go check em now

Dont forget to check you tightened the bolts and grub screws


Thanks for reading

Comment feedback as always appreciated

S
Posted by A130STB | Oct 10, 2013 @ 01:45 PM | 2,586 Views
I had been scratching my head regarding a strange yaw Drift to the right which I could not trim out. I had the quad in a hover in front of me trying see what the props were actually doing when the quad is in flight and notice the prop disc on motor 2 was tilting out of the horizontal. Now this looked like a possible culprit for the strange yaw behavior, so a landed and put it on charge as the wind was getting up. Didnt have chance to look at this again until Tuesday when my prop adapters finally arrived from China, so off with the prop savers sorely tempted to chuck them in the bin never did like the idea, anyway on with the prop adapters check the orientation and out into the garden. Put the quad into a hover and all evidence of the yaw drift has gone hooah.

So the lesson here is if you have to use prop savers ensure that the bands are as stiff as they can be, even better use prop adapter. secondly if you do get an unaccountable yaw drift check your props by examining them in a hover and look for anomalies in their behaviour
Posted by A130STB | Sep 30, 2013 @ 06:58 AM | 2,390 Views
UK based ESC flashing service

Please note this is a service for UK postal addresses only anywhere else PM me

As I don't yet have a trader profile see my feedback on fleabay (auger0_0) 465 positive feedback

I have spent considerable time looking for somewhere to get ESC's flashed in the UK and have not found anywhere which offers such a service at a cost effective rate to the hobbyist.

I have therefore purchased the equipment to flash Atmel based ESC's, depending on take up Silabs may be supported in the future

If you are unsure of the processor or compatibility PM me and I will happily check to see what options are available to you for a given ESC

Please note I am not a business and am purely offering this a service to fund other projects related to Quads and to help out hobbyist who either don't have the time or knowledge to do this themselves.

Please note flashing ESC's with other than the manufacturers firmware may invalidate any warranty. I will test each ESC flashed before return to ensure that the firmware has been updated.

The terms and conditions are as follows

Postage in each direction is covered by the you ESC's are small and can be posted as letter post so it should cost no more that 2 each way

My charge for the service is 3.50 Per ESC a discount for 2 or more, this covers Paypal charges and 1 which is donated to the author of the firmwares


Depending on which Firmware you want flashing I will do one of the following.

I...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Sep 27, 2013 @ 03:06 PM | 2,129 Views
Well today was the day of my X450 maiden flight.

Preflight checks carried out, one motor not starting at throttle up, not happy with that so fit new replacement and back we go out the door tripping over the cat in the process. Put the X on the ground and stand back throttle up and damn me if it doesnt a flip over well thats two props down back in doors and go over the PID's, replace the props back out and off we go again. This time get in the air but its shaking like man with no clothes in a blizzard stick it on the ground. Change from 3 blade to 2 blade props if it does flip in the air thats two more props, now I am scratching my head like a dog with fleas it just doesnt make sense. So go through all the settings and find that we are flying + and not x which explains the flips, now this is my fault as I reflashed the controller this morning. So the moral of the story is if you make major changes double check and double check again, in reglashing the FC had a factory reset so went to the default settings.

Now I really do feel stupid fortunately it only cost me a few props, so people learn from my mistake double check, whats really annoying is I keep saying in my build blog double check guess I should eat my own dog food.

Anyway the X is now flying fairly well with the default settings, has a bit of a yaw drift but that should be cured by adjusting the yaw pids, has a bit of a tremor across the CCW part of the X but again thats down to PID tuning I hope

This quad is going to be a bit of a rocket on 8045 props And 2812's if the calculations are right I should easy lift a small NiKon camera, I need to improve my flying skills now.

Anyway Part 4 may put in an appearance this weekend thats only if I am not flying.
Posted by A130STB | Sep 26, 2013 @ 05:22 PM | 1,627 Views
So you now have a Quad Frame bolted together and your nice shiny FC mounted on non metal pillars and all the other bits wired up and connected to the correct connectors.

The first test involves a visual inspection of each wire and where it goes if you have long power runs to ESC's and motors then you need to check these carefully I use a DVM and put one probe at the power distribution end and the other at the ESC to ensure I have no broken wires and then do the same thing for each feed to the motor this ensures that not only do you have an electrical connection but it goes where you think it does.

Check you battery is charged !!!!!!!

Remove all Props, the next part is dangerous because you are going to apply power and if you get something wrong those props will either launch your quad into space or lead to bits of flesh being chopped up.

Take off your props NOW last chance

Verify that your motors are correctly plugged in. Motor 1 on a quad is normally the top left (CW) 2 is top right (CCW) 3 is bottom right (CW) and 4 is bottom left (CCW)

Ensure your RX has the correct outputs connected to your FC this will depend on your FC and your RX check your instructions.

Unplug all the motors except M1 which supplies power to your FC

Turn on your TX and ensure the throttle is closed (Fully down)

Connect your power source to the quad, you should hear at least one beep from the ESC if not go back and check you have everything connected correctly. You...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Sep 17, 2013 @ 02:58 PM | 2,142 Views
Well here is Part 3 Electrical

First a word about motors, depending on what you want to do Acro, FPV or Heavy lift will depend on which motors you use in your build.

The following formula should give you a good start

Low Kv under 1000Kv with large props should be good for Heavy lift or photo work

Mid Kv under 1500Kv with largish to medium props should make for fairly good all rounder

High Kv over 1500Kv with medium to small props should make for something to hammer around

use the calculator in Part 2 to check out your choices.

Anyway back to the main program

You now have a frame which should be rock solid all you have to do now is mount the motors and wire it all up.

Gather all the electrical bits together ensure your ESC's have sufficient cable to reach down the Arms to the motors and also reach your power distribution board by the way I don't like just pulling all the ESC wires into bundles of Positive and Negative and then stuff a battery connector on the end to much to go wrong if your soldering is not that good.

Put your LiPO on Charge

So here is a list of what you should have

4 x ESC's with at least one BEC
1 x FC
1 x Power distribution board
8 x Male bullet connectors 6mm for ESC power to distribution board (Depending on your board)
12 x Male and Female bullet connectors 4mm for connecting ESC to Motor

4 x RX to FC cables (Servo cables)

Heat shrink Red / Black in various sizes

On the Power Distribution Board check...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Sep 16, 2013 @ 02:43 PM | 2,955 Views
Well here is Part 2 Putting the frame together

Here there be Dragons and other things which will bite you if are not careful and pay attention to detail.

When assembling things with nuts and bolts which are subject to vibration use either nyloc nuts or spring or star washers and if necessary lock nuts.

Nyloc nuts are best used once and then throw it way, they work by the bolt cutting new threads in the nylon at the end so they are no good once used just don't do it.

Okay I will stop preaching now

So you have a box of pieces which will if put together create your nice shiny frame, from experience do the following before assembly.

This may sound boring and OCD (no offense meant to anyone)

In the instructions you will find a bill of materials or at least a list of parts, check each and everyone of them yes count the nuts and blots and make sure that you have all the parts listed.

If part A is 6mm collect them altogether and put them in a pot, do this for all the small components, why you ask? the reason is two fold so you don't loose any this is frustrating and secondly its easier to find them if they are in a pot (write the size on the pot it makes it easier still)

Decide where you are going assemble the frame preferably a table or work bench, below your table spread out an old sheet not one of your partners best table cloths as this is likely to stop your build dead in its tracks, the reason for this is if you drop something it wont bounce and...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Sep 16, 2013 @ 08:08 AM | 2,355 Views
Given the great amount of information and dis-information on the Web I thought I would start a Blogish thread on what to do and what not to do.

First thing dont jump in and buy any old quad (or other for that matter), what do you want from you multi acrobatics, camera platform or just learn to fly.

If you answer acrobatics and your a newbie good luck and I hope your pockets are deep, seriously dont do it until you can fly nose in and out and control the multi precisely I can guarantee the multi will be in the cupboard and broken in under a week.

if you really must try acro's get a micro like PUMQ or a Hubsan the parts are cheap and so is the micro itself also its less likely to cause much damage if it collides with something either inanimate or animate.

Dont go and spend your entire bank balance on the most impressive looking multi you can find. Look around see what others suggest join the forums and ask questions remember there are no dumb questions only stupid answers.

The best and most satisfying way to get into this hobby is to build your own it can also be the cheapest, the reason I suggest this route is that you learn about how it all hands together a distinct advantage when something goes wrong at the field because you will probably be to fix it there and then. The other benefit is the sense of accomplishment when you go to the field and you take your first flight you can say I built that you can beat the feeling.

I would suggest an + or x...Continue Reading
Posted by A130STB | Sep 11, 2013 @ 04:51 PM | 2,515 Views
Welcome to my first blog on here.

I have been around for a few months after being out of flying for a year or so after my Honeybee FP had an electrical accident (Dont ask).

I spotted a PUMQ on ebay which went for more than a new one but I had the bug so I purchased one from HK. After a very long wait it arrived and much to my consternation I could not get it to flash, after much gnashing of teeth and rude words and consultation with the Oracles who live on this board or at least it seems like it as you ask a question and someone like Jesolins in remotest OZ comes back to you in short order with a great response. Purchased a programmer and final got a bootloader on it, flashed with one build or other (this I like) finally settled with Bradwii for most of the time and little GKE, after doing some loops hit a brick wall and broke a motor post. Shortened the motor posts so they are all the same length and back in the air. Now has uprated motors and bigger props and hovers rock solid in still air, not got round to doing some loops yet that will have to wait as I got bigger fish to fry.

Scabbing around on fleabay looking for bargains of the quad kind and found a Carbon fibre set up and a load of spares with a buy it now hit the button without thinking what the hell it wasnt a fortune.

To my surprise when it arrives I find a KK X450 frame not an expensive frame but very nice. Also included was a KK 2.0 and four reasonable CF-2812 well ones a CF-2822 but that's...Continue Reading