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Posted by jjmelo | Sep 10, 2014 @ 06:47 AM | 2,084 Views
Durafly Das Ugly Stik - Unboxing & Assembly - Review Part 1 (6 min 32 sec)

I received Hobbyking's newest model, the Durafly Das Ugly Stik today in the mail (after ordering it a week ago) and above you will find my video review, the first video is the unboxing, first impressions and assembly video. The second video is the maiden flight.

The main feature or gimmick of this model is the mockup engine up front. Yes, it seems like this foamy has a glow engine, but upon further inspection you realize that the engine is just a dummy and that there is a brushless motor behind the firewall. I really didn't pay attention to anouncement videos and I thought that the engine was made out of foam, but it is pretty hefty. Not sure if its the wisest to carry all that dead weight upfront, but it sure looks cool!

...Continue Reading
Posted by jjmelo | Aug 08, 2014 @ 01:54 PM | 1,864 Views
Bix3 (Bixler 3) Unboxing and First Impressions (5 min 27 sec)

Here's my unboxing and first impressions video of Hobbyking's newest FPV platform, the Bix3. Here's a list of changes from version 1 and 2.

- Removable wing: the mechanism works great. The wings are longer.
- Landing gear: removable main and steerable tail wheel.
- Wooden FPV platform (canopy) included.
- Lower KV motor and larger prop: should make it more efficient.
- Lots of reinforcent included: carbon strips inside the nose area and a carbon tube along the tail.

Overall, I'm very please with the Bix3.

[sidenote: shipping was extremely fast. It took 5 business days from the Internation Warehouse my home in California. Shipped via EMS and when it got the the states, it was delivered by Norco Overnite]
Posted by jjmelo | Jun 16, 2014 @ 04:33 AM | 2,843 Views
Introducing the Swift Hex, a mini sized hexacopter that I designed and 3D printed, specifically for FPV. Its design was inspired by the Blackout Spider Hex, but seeing as it is currently unavailable, I decided to designed and make my own.

It is exactly 300mm motor to motor. It uses 37mm spacers, just because that is what I had lying around. I decided to use cheap ZMR 1806 motors, along with 5 x 3 props. It has a built-in vibration dampening system with earplug for the top-mounted Mobius Action Cam. 10amp SimonK ESCs and a Naze32 equivalent, the Flip32+ from Witespy power the system.

Rippin' it Up - Swift Hex (3 min 53 sec)

More information at: Reading
Posted by jjmelo | Jun 11, 2014 @ 06:37 AM | 2,786 Views
Stop breaking your ImmersionRC 5.8 Video transmitters!

We all know what happens: after a crash, the antenna connector breaks off, and its all downhill from there. Since its most likely that the transmitter ran without the antenna, the transmitter burns out and consequently it will have a lot less range, IF you manage to solder the antenna connector back on.

After ruining 2 video transmitters, and seeing as I have a 3d printer and some 3D design skills, I made a plastic protector that will protect the antenna connector. They weight about 10g and you attach the video transmitter with zip ties. I designed and I print these myself. I've sold a bunch here, this is my 5th batch.

To order, just go to my site and click the Paypal button. They are $9 each, shipped in the US, with $1 discounts if you order multiples.

The PY600, the ImmersionRC 5.8 video transmitter protector:

Also, by popular demand, I designed one for the 250mw v3 version.

**UPDATE: The 600mw version has been modified slightly. There is an opening on now to allow easy access to the dip switches, as requested by some here. Please check the updated pictures.


- What material?

I print them in black ABS. They weigh about 10g

- When do they ship?

It usually takes 1 business day to print and ship out, but sometimes a bit more, depending on the number of orders.

- Can I fit a 90 degree connector?

Yes. See the pictures above.

- Do you ship internationally?

Yes. Send me a PM. It is $5 more for international orders, so $14 total. I've shipped to NZ, Canada, Australia and the U.K.

- How about a Boscam version?

G-Unit designed and prints these. Click here for his thread.
Posted by jjmelo | May 27, 2014 @ 03:51 AM | 2,146 Views
A is for Azusa (3 min 31 sec)

After seeing these letter on the side of the foothills all over Southern California, I decided to try to fly close to them via FPV. Here is me second attempt (the first one was B is for Burbank, click here to watch that video). Please excuse the excessive jello and vibes; the CC3D controller isnít perfectly tuned and Iím using very cheap motors that are hard to balance. Other than that, enjoy!

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Mar 09, 2014 @ 01:16 AM | 2,739 Views
Turbo Commander - Maiden Flight (3 min 22 sec)

Shot in early January 2014 at the Apollo Field in Southern California. The airplane and no bad tendencies, required just a couple click of elevator trim and it flew amazing.

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Mar 09, 2014 @ 01:14 AM | 2,635 Views
Warbler at Hansen Dam (6 min 18 sec)

My latest FPV video, shot today at Hansen Dam in SoCal. The plane is the Warbler, my scratch-built FPV platform. More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Jan 24, 2014 @ 09:04 AM | 2,887 Views
The Turbo Commander airplane has always had a special place in my heart; it was the plane my dad and his pilot friends used to fly. Its a twin-engine, pressurized, jet-prop 10-passenger airplane, better known as Bob Hooverís acrobatic plane (his was a Shrike, a piston-powered Aero Commander variant).

Over the holiday season, my friend Mateo and I decided to build a scale version of this plane, using a blown-up 3-view picture I found online.

It was built using a combination of Adamís Readi-board and pink 1″ insulation foam. The whole process took about 4 nights.

Additional specs:
  • 60" Wingspan
  • 54" Fuselage length
  • 2 x Turnigy D3536/8 1000KV
  • 2 x 9 x 6 APC props (CW & CCW)
  • 6 9G servos (1 for steering, 1 for rudder, 2 for ailerons and 2 for elevators).
  • 2 x 50A H-king ESCs
  • 3,000mah 4S Turnigy Lipo
  • FrSky X8R receiver.
More information and pictures available at:

Stay tuned for the maiden flight video.
Posted by jjmelo | Dec 30, 2013 @ 09:16 PM | 3,229 Views
Warbler UAV Maiden Flight (7 min 22 sec)

They say imitation is the sincerest for of flattery, and in this case, the creators of the Talon UAV should be extremely flattered. Introducing my latest FPV platform, the Warbler UAV. Needless to say, it was heavily inspired by the Talon UAV.

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Dec 28, 2013 @ 09:52 PM | 3,508 Views
Durafly HyperBipe Maiden Flight (6 min 19 sec)

Part 3 of the HyperBipe series the maiden flight.

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Dec 27, 2013 @ 12:05 AM | 3,846 Views
Durafly Hyperbipe - Assembly and Tips (14 min 7 sec)

Part 2 of the HyperBipe series where I go thru the assembly and a couple of quick tips. Stay tuned for part 3, the maiden flight.

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Dec 26, 2013 @ 07:45 PM | 3,599 Views
Durafly HyperBipe Unboxing (6 min 41 sec)

Check out my unboxing video of Durafly's latest model, the Hyper Bipe. Stay tuned for part 2, the assembly.

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Sep 27, 2013 @ 07:28 PM | 4,199 Views
B is for Burbank - FPV flight (8 min 35 sec)

One of my FPV goals was to fly around and take video of the big letter B in the foothills of Burbank and today I've met that goal!

More info here:
Posted by jjmelo | Sep 27, 2013 @ 06:36 PM | 4,383 Views
Introducing the J-Twin, a twin-motor airplane I designed and built specifically for FPV. I took it for its maiden flight today and I behaved amazingly well, just a click or two of aileron trim and it was all set. The center of gravity is approximately at 1/3 of the wing chord and it didnít present any negative tendencies.

J-Twin Walkaround (0 min 49 sec)

More information and pictures:
Posted by jjmelo | Sep 04, 2013 @ 11:04 PM | 3,664 Views
Ov3rquad + Palm Trees (1 min 50 sec)

My first video + music mashup. Sure, the video isn't the best and the cuts are kinda rough, but there you have it.

Frame: ov3rquad / DJI arms
ESC: RCTimer 30 amp SimonK
Flight controller: APM 2.5
Camera: GoPro Hero 2
Video: ImmersionRC 5.8 / FatSharks
Posted by jjmelo | Aug 24, 2013 @ 04:08 PM | 4,137 Views
I just finished my Caution Wing (my version of the FliteTest FT Versa). Maiden later today or perhaps tomorrow morning? More info at
Posted by jjmelo | Aug 21, 2013 @ 08:56 PM | 4,216 Views
I've had an idea for quite some time now and right about now seems like the right time to execute. I'm pretty sure others have thought and built something similar to this, but I think I can do it quite well. The idea is to build a quad and airplane hybrid, like the picture above. A standard glider design with a pod fuselage and a twin boom configuration, elongated in the front to acomodate 4 motors and props pointing upwards and the achieve proper center of gravity.

These are my initial thoughts and materials:

- All foamboard using the Experimental Airlines' Armin wing and fuselage tube design. I've build triangular tubes and those seem to be the way I'll go.
- KK 2.0 for control of the quad portion
- Mixing with switches utilizing my Taranis and OpenTX
- 1000kv motors for the quad portion, swinging 9" or 10" props.
- Forward propulsion using a 2,200 kv motor and a 6 x 4 prop.

Stay tuned for updates. Visit my personal site at
Posted by jjmelo | Jul 30, 2013 @ 07:38 AM | 4,236 Views
FPV in Las Vegas (5 min 27 sec)

Took the old ov3rquad out for a spin while taking a quick trip to Las Vegas. Check out my latest video above!
Posted by jjmelo | Jul 17, 2013 @ 10:38 PM | 5,098 Views
I finally received my FrSky Taranis from Aloft Hobbies. I managed to grab one of the last 3 radios left from the pre-buy. Here are some pictures of the unboxing. Note: my radio box got damaged in transit, but there was a note from Aloft saying that it was damaged on the way to them, and instead of making me wait for a new case, they are going to mail me a new one once they get them from FrSky.

Thank you Wayne, and all the staff over at Aloft. Amazing service as usual.
Posted by jjmelo | Jul 03, 2013 @ 07:26 AM | 4,662 Views
World's First Jet-Powered 3D Plane - Extra 260 (6 min 36 sec)

What do ou get when you cross a 55" Extra 260 with a Jet Engine? Watch this video to find out. This was the maiden flight of this plane, built and flown by Rob Janiger. Filmed at the Apollo Field in Southern California.