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Old Apr 17, 2012, 10:01 AM
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The Netherlands, ZH, Leiden
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Question
which one should I choose tri or quad?

hello,

I am planning to make a multi-rotor but I don't know which way I should go. Should I go for the tricopter from rcexplorer or should I built a quadcopter. My goal is to make some aerial photo's/videos with an gopro hero 2.

Here I make a list of the pros and cons of both maybe you guys can add some to them, correct me if I am wrong and give me other advise but anyway here I go.

Tricopter pros:

+cheaper to built because it uses only 3 motors instead of 4.
+no props in front of your gopro.
+less vibration because it only has 3 motors/props. (don't know it's true but I think so)
+more flight time because it has less motors.
+
+
+
Tricopter cons:

-don't fly as stable as a quad because it has less motors.
-harder to fly than an quad copter. (read that somewhere don't know it's true)
-can carry less weight than a quad because it has less motors so you probably can't put an heavy camera on in so you have to stick to the gopro.
-
-
-

Quadcopter pros:

+it fly more stable than a tri.
+can carry more weight so it can also carry an heavier battery.
+easier to fly.
+
+
+

Quadcopter cons:
-there probably is going to be a prop in front of your gopro.
-It's more expensive to build.
-harder to get rid of the vibrations because it has more motors.
-
-
-

Again I don't know if all the things I mentioned above are true.

I would really appreciate it if you guys would/could give me some advise.

and before you guys say build both that's not an option for me

Thanks,
Job
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 10:56 AM
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Joined Sep 2010
286 Posts
For simple AP/AV I'd go with a Tri. Biggest factor being that you don't see the props!

Also, not sure I'd agree with the "more stable" plus for a quad. I've flown both and in my experience a tri was just as stable, and had better yaw authority. (Yes, some will say this is just the design of prop size/arm length/weight, etc and I'm sure I'll get flamed for saying it, but that was my experience.) Sometimes my quad seems to randomly hesitate a bit on yaw input depending on what it's doing to try and keep the quad level.

Because of the above, I actually find my tri easier to fly then the quad. Also, it seems to be easier to maintain orientation when flying LOS then with a quad.

An RCexplorer tri will lift a gopro and plenty of FPV gear without any problem.

Also, just as an aside story.... I first built an RCexplorer tricopter with a gopro, etc. I wanted to try and get more flight time so I decided to try a quad with a bigger battery - or even two batteries. I'm sure with the proper motor selection it may work, but using the same 2213N motors from the Tri, on the Quad it did not result in more flight time. The extra added weight of a second battery just meant higher throttle settings while flying which ate up the battery faster. Given that, and the above comments, in the end, I've gone back to the Tri for AP.
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Last edited by bladeaudio; Apr 17, 2012 at 11:10 AM.
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 11:03 AM
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thanks for the answer
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 11:19 AM
Tech freak
Sundsvall Midlanda, Sweden
Joined Aug 2002
502 Posts
I would go for a quad. So far I have built mostly tris myself(only one quad) and all homebuilt frames, but find the moving parts of the servotail to be a source for possible problems. It is hard to build a yaw mechanism that allows the same precision as solid mounted motors with no yaw mechanism. (Not impossible, but hard)

Solve the prop problem with having the camera hanging under the copter. Easily achieved by some lightweight landinggear.

Thats my pov, I just like as few moving parts as possible.
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 12:10 PM
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United States, AZ, Seligman
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I will get back to you tomorrow evening on which is harder to fly. I am new to multicopters. I flew a quad and learned how to hover it, and then crashed it. I just finished building a tricopter and am going to test it tomorrow morning. The tricopter is the same size as my quad was and motors, ESCs, battery, flight control board and all other electronics are the same, so it will be a good comparison.
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 12:29 PM
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quad for sure. mount your camera under, no props in the front .
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 12:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave8888 View Post
I will get back to you tomorrow evening on which is harder to fly. I am new to multicopters. I flew a quad and learned how to hover it, and then crashed it. I just finished building a tricopter and am going to test it tomorrow morning. The tricopter is the same size as my quad was and motors, ESCs, battery, flight control board and all other electronics are the same, so it will be a good comparison.
Keep me posted

Quote:
quad for sure. mount your camera under, no props in the front .
If I hang it under my quad I have more vibrations then if I hang it in a bit in front of it read that on the flite test forum

But thanks for the advice
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jobbzz View Post
Keep me posted



If I hang it under my quad I have more vibrations then if I hang it in a bit in front of it read that on the flite test forum

But thanks for the advice
you can always get quad FPV frame with "spread" front legs.
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 02:47 PM
vdoeditor
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Uniontown, Ohio
Joined Dec 2006
126 Posts
Quote:
I am planning to make a multi-rotor but I don't know which way I should go. Should I go for the tricopter from rcexplorer or should I built a quadcopter. My goal is to make some aerial photo's/videos with an gopro hero 2.

Here I make a list of the pros and cons of both maybe you guys can add some to them, correct me if I am wrong and give me other advise but anyway here I go.
if you want to do aerial photo and video, for more than just fun...DEFINITELY go with the quad.


Quote:
Tricopter pros:

+cheaper to built because it uses only 3 motors instead of 4.
true. one extra motor and speed control on a quad (although a good servo for the tail of a tri-copter is something the quad doesn't need, the quad is a little bit more expensive.)

Quote:
+no props in front of your go pro.
David W, along with many other tri-copters I have seen, have props in their shots

Quote:
+less vibration because it only has 3 motors/props. (don't know it's true but I think so)
I will have to disagree here. my hexa had less vibes than any machine I have flown yet. (all has to do with prop balance in my humble opinion)

Quote:
+more flight time because it has less motors.
Slightly, those 3 motors have to lift the centers as well as the ESC and weight of each of their respective arms. A quad has another motor, but also has the weight of yet another arm and ESC and extra wiring. it comes fairly close in the end with the tri-copter pulling out on top by a small margin. (what the quad loses to the tri-copter here in flight time, it gains with slightly more lifting power/stability


Quote:
Tricopter cons:
-don't fly as stable as a quad because it has less motors.
I agree. less lifting points around the "rotor disc" the less stability.


Quote:
-harder to fly than an quad copter. (read that somewhere don't know it's true)
This one could go either way I believe. however my opinion is that based on the fact that a quad has another lifting point and is def more stable in a hover (when it comes to just sitting there and holding still) i would go with the quad for a first timer. Again, the more lifting points, the more stability. Since beginners have to learn to hover before they learn to "fly" quad would be my choice here. Once you know how to handle a multi rotor then it is up to personal preference at that point.


Quote:
-can carry less weight than a quad because it has less motors so you probably can't put an heavy camera on in so you have to stick to the gopro.
True for the most part. (a quad with the same size motors and esc's as a tri, doesn't have too awful much more lifting power, cuz the frame is heavier due to the extra ESC and arm. The quad does win here as it will pick up more, but the win is is not by a landslide.)


-
-
-

Quote:
Quadcopter pros:

+it fly more stable than a tri.
somewhat true.....it "hovers" more stable than a Tri, once in forward flight that gap narrows considerably. tri-copters track VERY well in forward flight if set-up correctly.


Quote:
+
can carry more weight so it can also carry an heavier battery.
again, true to some extent, but not by a huge amount. (at least in my experiences)



Quote:
+easier to fly.
easier to "Hover". Forward flight is very good with both machines
+
+
+

Quote:
Quadcopter cons:
-there probably is going to be a prop in front of your gopro.
Not true. i designed my anti-vibration camera boom to prevent this. Here is my demo reel made up entirely of footage from my quad and my tricopter. no props in ANY of the shots. (this is MOSTLY quadcopter footage. the only tricopter shots are the motorcycle and my daughter on the pink 4-wheeler at the end)

Aerial compilation - 2012 (2 min 11 sec)



Quote:
-It's more expensive to build.
true. one extra motor and speed control (although a good servo for the tail of a tri-copter is something the quad doesn't need, the quad is a little bit more expensive.)


Quote:
-harder to get rid of the vibrations because it has more motors.
IMHO....false. its MORE work because you have to take the time to balance 4 props instead of 3, but......it isn't any harder. My hexa has less vibes than any of my other machines, because I took more time precision balancing the prop hubs and the prop blades.

-
-
-

Quote:
I would really appreciate it if you guys would/could give me some advise.
this is hard to do, both are amazing machines, both are great flyers, both have pros and cons different from one another. For flying FPV and/or flying for fun in my yard, Tri-copter hands down.....they are a BALL of fun to fly. For filming and capturing video footage......overall my quad wins. different machines for different things.

Here is a video of my tricopter and my quadcopter flying, you can see the differences in the way that the quad sort of floats in a hover or extremely slow forward flight where the tricopter struggles a little more there. But once a tricopter is moving it tracks beautifully.


Tri-copter (4 min 34 sec)


quadcopter - angry bird - multicam (5 min 57 sec)



You want my advice? have both! LOL

once you get into multi-rotors you can never have just one. hehehe am i right guys?



Cheers!

Eric
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Old Apr 17, 2012, 02:51 PM
vdoeditor
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Uniontown, Ohio
Joined Dec 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jobbzz View Post

and before you guys say build both that's not an option for me

Thanks,
Job


Sorry man, i had to say it.
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Old Apr 18, 2012, 09:54 PM
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United States, AZ, Seligman
Joined Nov 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave8888 View Post
I will get back to you tomorrow evening on which is harder to fly. I am new to multicopters. I flew a quad and learned how to hover it, and then crashed it. I just finished building a tricopter and am going to test it tomorrow morning. The tricopter is the same size as my quad was and motors, ESCs, battery, flight control board and all other electronics are the same, so it will be a good comparison.
It's going to be a couple more days (a good friend needs help) but I will let you know which one I thought was easier to fly.
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 12:16 PM
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let me know dave although I think I go for a quad so I made a list of possible motors. Now I would like to know what you guys think are the best for a quadcopter:

NTM Prop Drive Series 28-30A 750kv / 140w

www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__16229__NTM_Prop_Drive_Series_28_30A_750kv_140w.h tml

Turnigy D2836/11 750KV Brushless Outrunner Motor

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...ner_Motor.html

Turnigy L2215J-900 Brushless Motor (200w)

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...tor_200w_.html

hexTronik DT750 Brushless Outrunner 750kv

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...ner_750kv.html

This is just a quick list didn't go through every motor on hobbyking so if the best motor misses on this list please let me know.
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 12:48 PM
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United States, AZ, Seligman
Joined Nov 2011
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Ok I think the quad was easier then the tricopter to hover and keep control of. I had my dual rates at 70% on my quad, I had to lower them to 55% on the tricopter to make it as easy to hover as the quad. On your motor question, I only have experience with the Hextronik DT750s. I like them very powerful. Although I have read on this site that a lot of people like the Hextronik DT700s over the DT750s. They said they have less vibrations.
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 01:07 PM
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thanks for the answer Dave
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 03:21 PM
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I made a shopping-list for my quad

please let me know what your thoughts are and if I have something wrong or if I miss some part please let me know and does anyone have suggestions for props?

I am also interested if I have the right batteries on the list.


here we go:

shopping list quad copter

motor hexTronik DT750 Brushless Outrunner 750kv x 5
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...idProduct=6247

esc TURNIGY Plush 30amp Speed Controller x5

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...ontroller.html

kkboard HobbyKing Multi-Rotor Control Board V3.0 (Atmega328 PA)

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__21977__HobbyKing_Multi_Rotor_Control_Board_V3_0_ Atmega328_PA_.html


Battery Turnigy 3600mAh 3S 30C Lipo Pack (DE Warehouse) x 3

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...arehouse_.html

Heatschrink
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...3832&aff=61689

Heatschrink
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...3839&aff=61689

Connector xt60

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewitem.asp?idproduct=9572&aff=61689


Connector 3.5mm bullet

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewitem.asp?idproduct=68&aff=61689


Wires red silicone 16awg x 5

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...9681&aff=61689

Wires black silicone 16awg x 2

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...9680&aff=61689

Wires 10CM Male to Male Servo Lead (JR) 26AWG (10pcs/set)

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewitem.asp?idproduct=21758&aff=61689


Batterystrap

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewitem.asp?idproduct=17410&aff=61689


with approx 75$ shipping costs that comes on a total for spending by hobby king $348.45 but I need some aluminium booms and some wood which I get in a local store which will also be 50$ so that makes a total of $398.45


note I have listed 5 motors/esc so I have a spare one
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