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Posted by Cheese5 | Mar 08, 2017 @ 12:02 AM | 10,139 Views
With the mini quad racing trend getting smaller and smaller I've decided to trade in my current 250mm quad for the 122mm sized quad. A smaller frame lends itself to having less mass which comes with a host of benefits. Less mass allows the pilot to accelerate and change directions much quicker and also has less momentum to break parts in crashes. Being smaller in nature, the power system pushing the quad does not have to be as powerful; thus, lowering the cost of parts while preserving the quad's thrust to weight ratio.

Build: Hellbender 122mm
ESC: RaceStar RS20A V2 4 in 1
Motors: Emax RS1306 3300kv
Props: 3030 (cut down 5030 Gemfans from 250mm quad reserves)
Lipo: ReadymadeRC 4S 850mah 35C
Receiver: FRsky D4r-ii
FPV gear: nano 1g camera with 5.8ghz 200mw module and homemade Cloverleaf Antenna

3/3/17 Maiden flight
Once I swapped the wires of 2 of the motors the quad was ready go. First flight went smoothly. Using stock PIDs on the PIKO board the quad would jitter while hovering so I lowered the P values and fixed it. I have to say this quad is really loud, its whine is higher pitch than the 250mm sized quads. Using current PIDs it flies excellent: extreme angles and flips start and stop right when you command them, power on 4S is a bit much to handle (which is a good thing!), and isn't affected much by wind (probably due to its small cross section). The quad hovers at around 35% throttle and I haven't gotten the chance to push the throttle stick higher than 75%.

Some issues that still need to be ironed out are: Higher throttle flight vibrations (need to lower gains and balance props), video from transmitter has interference lines flowing across (probably due to noisy 3.3V regulator, may need to swap vTX for less power sensitive one), battery and vTX antenna are exposed (brainstorm some ideas to protect antenna, find a solid plate to cover the battery). Currently running multishot with ESCs. Apparently the ESCs support Dshot, though that option is not available in betaflight options, need to search around to find a workaround.
Posted by Cheese5 | Feb 18, 2015 @ 02:27 PM | 15,899 Views
So you might be one of the few unlucky people that had their DX6i gimbals break for some reason, and have already modded it with a backlight and so cannot return it for warranty from HH. Don't worry, there's still hope! You could replace the whole gimbal with a Taranis/Aurora gimbal and continue using your DX6i!


Taranis gimbal $13.50 (
4x 10k ohm resistors $0.40
2x 18k ohm resistor $0.20
2x Rail to rail op amp MCP602 $1.36

To use the taranis gimbal, you have to make an op amp to "stretch" its signal to fit the standard 90 degree pot size. Follow the schematic (its a bit hard to see, but R33 is 18k ohm, looks like a 10k ohm) for the chip's ports 1,2, and 3. Then add a power source to power the chip (the red and black wires from the original pot signal wires work). (before starting build, make sure to remove the AA batteries from the DX6i)

Once you finish assembling the circuit (twice for aileron and elevator), power the DX6i in calibration mode, and re calibrate the sticks. ( When everything is finished, cover the electronics with some liquid electrical tape and tuck it safely inside the corner of the transmitter and go out and fly!
Posted by Cheese5 | Jul 16, 2014 @ 02:45 PM | 13,510 Views
It was about time to buy a quadcopter that was durable enough for me to smash around playstructures yet cheap enough not to break the bank. The DRQ250 looked appealing because of its low price ($90) compared to other mini quads out there (blackout and BAH @ ~$150), plus the arms fold and the entire cage area is mounted on rubber anti vibration stands. Ordered a kit from readymaderc and began the build.

The build was straight forward, just needed to screw in all the bolts and solder the electronics on. One thing I did differently was take out the 2nd bolt that locks the arm in place. That way in a crash the arms will fold and take the impact rather than stay locked and have that energy spread to more expensive components.

Current setup:

Sunnysky X2204s 2300kv
Magic 12A ESC flashed with simonk
Gemfan 5030 props
3S 1550mah 3S Glacier lipo
DR4R-ii Frsky RX outputting CPPM
Flip 1.5 FC (going for APM 2.6 in the future)

"Cheap" setup
RCX 1804 2300kv motor
Plush 10A ESC flashed with BLheli 11.2
3S 1300mah~1500mah lipo
5030 Gemfan props
AR6210 + satellite receiver (could be substituted with your reciever of choice)
Flip 1.5 FC
5.8ghz FPV system : homemade cloverleaf, 200mw TX module, powered by a 1S, camera is a keychain 16 (or mobius once it arrives in the mail)

Flying the quad is great, no bad habits (seems like all the mini quads fly the same regardless of frames). One thing is that this quad is a bit noisier than my previous quad (the 3d...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Jun 28, 2014 @ 05:37 PM | 13,141 Views
Since I had a um T-28 that was sitting in its box why not use it for some FPV? So I attached the 200mw 5.8ghz FPV module with a micro 1g camera to the canopy and flew that around. FPV landings and take off on runway was a new experience that hooked me in. Inspired from the scale FPV thread I decided to make the T-28 more scale looking from the camera. I added canopy lines, control stick, pilot legs, instrument panel, and even a pan servo for the camera. Altogether the T-28 weighed around 60g, still flyable and predictable. Best part of the build was that because this was so small crashes would not destroy the airframe so I could attempt maneuvers that I would not risk my larger FPV aircraft with!

Ultra Micro T-28 Scale FPV Touch and Go at Park (4 min 31 sec)

Scale micro T-28 FPV (5 min 59 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Jun 28, 2014 @ 04:35 PM | 13,274 Views
To replace my Fnmqx I decided to move to a brushless mini quad. Because of my limited budget the 3d printed frame at $30 was a appealing choice. The frame itself is light at 90g and is easy to zip tie all the components on. One downside of this frame is that it is not as durable as CF or G10 mini H quad frames. I've cracked mine on the 3rd flight and following that crack every time the quad bumps into the ground it'll break there over and over again. A positive for this frame is the material its made of absorbs vibrations well, the motors sound quieter than say on a G10 quad.


Setup #1
1811 Turnigy 2300kv motor
Plush 10A ESC
3S 1000mah~1500mah lipo
AR6115e RX
Flip FC 1.5

Setup #2
RCX 2400kv
Plush 10A ESC
3S 1300mah~2200mah
AR6115e RX
Flip FC 1.5

Setup #2 flies much better with more power and less noise (not to mention the clean look). Overall the SSH quad is a great entry level mini H quad, if you are wanting to try out brushless mini quads but can't afford a CF one this quad can be a good choice!...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Aug 23, 2013 @ 07:15 PM | 14,769 Views
Here's my rendition of the FPV MQX:

The frame is the V949 frame with the mqx control board. Props upgraded to GWS, frame lightened down 10g, and all critical components glued and reinforced with hot glue.

FPV equipment:
5.8ghz 200mw module with homemade clover leaf
808 #16 HD keychain camera for HD recording and FPV

Range for this is limited by the mqx board's 500m (with the DX6i antenna pointed at quad, so worst case scenario, it'll be safe to fly a bit farther than that). Video range is tested out to 770m with a larger FPV aircraft.

UPDATE 10/19/13: Bought a nano qx board and replaced the old mqx board with it. The nano qx board has 2 flight modes: aerobatic with AS3x and autolevel mode. Also it has accelerometers along with the mqx gyros. They (HH) fixed the aerobatic mode in this module, the flips are much easier to do, goes where you point it, and no more of the infamous mqx wobble at full throttle. The autolevel mode makes FPV with it a breeze, let go of the sticks and within a few seconds it hovers in one place! Another great feature is its weight, it is lighter than the original mqx board, so now my mqx/nano qx hovers at 1/4 throttle!

12/25/13: Soldered a pololu S7V8A voltage regulator to it and got rid of the vTX lipo. It took a 820uf capacitor to smooth out all of lines of interference. In addition to saving weight, it also reduced the burden of carrying a battery on one of the legs, so it flies better in all aspects!

EDIT: Unfortunately this quad came to a premature end. While flying over the beaches the board malfunctioned and sent the mqx tumbling into the salt water. Then the waves curled it into the vast ocean. Next time flying over the ocean I'll make sure to attach a flotation device so at least it'll be visible if it goes down over water. Since then I've been flying brushless mini H quads like the super simple mini H quad and the DRQ250.

FPV MQX at park (3 min 56 sec)

Posted by Cheese5 | May 05, 2013 @ 09:34 PM | 15,135 Views
Ever had that moment during vacation where you thought "wow this is a great place to fly!"? Or "an aerial view of this would be awesome! The solution is to make an airplane that can travel with you, in a backpack, whenever you need it. That way you will always be ready to fly, where ever you want!

Adding another dimension to this fly anywhere airplane, I added FPV so this could capture and fly in the scenery of that vacation point.

A flying wing is perfect for the FPV backpack role.

Goals are: in backpack,
2. +10min flight times
3. fly in moderate wind
4. carry FPV camera

With all this in mind, a flying wing platform would fit all of it. (a quad would have been good too, but that was out of my budget). To achieve the 10min flight time and still have enough power to climb, I used the heaviest electronics to calculate how much the airframe could weigh and took off as much weight as possible. The biggest hurdle in this build was weight, not only does this wing have to fly for 10min, it needs to carry the FPV load.

This wing has achieved all these goals. In fact the maiden flight was in heavy wind, and that lasted over 10mins with the battery still at 50%!. Videos will be added shortly.

Flight video:
Scratchbuilt Falcon flight HD (8 min 48 sec)

Posted by Cheese5 | Apr 17, 2013 @ 07:03 PM | 14,655 Views
The goal of this project is to make the stock parkzone radian into a camera platform that can follow way points and can be used for surveying land, rescue missions (for downed RC aircraft) and such like that.

Starting off, the Raidan with 5.8ghz video transmission and DSMX full range controller the range is 1km (anymore is entering sketchy territory).
A list of objectives:
1.Autopilot/OSD will be installed to provide RTh capability (during FPV missions), that way DSMX system can be pushed as far as possible (some have gotten 4km with DSMX however it is not consistent)
2. Autopilot and RTH must be rock solid and reliable before moving on to long range flights
3. Camera system will be upgraded to HD and might add a pan/tilt mount
4. Push the DSMX system until it reaches max range, this is to test the homemade CP antennas to make sure they can go farther. RTH will take the Radian back when signal is lost.

This will be updated as new things are added on.

5/30/13: FPV system working well within LOS
Parkzone Radian 808 #16 FPV Baylands (11 min 28 sec)

FPV Radian 5.8ghz 200mw Baylands (12 min 49 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Jan 04, 2013 @ 08:40 PM | 14,723 Views
I made the system modular so I could use it with all my micro aircraft. All up weight is ~ 9g with lipo.

Using a 5.8ghz RC305 RX, nano 2g TX, and 1g nano 520tvl camera with 110 degree lens.

UM T-28 FPV 5.8ghz (3 min 15 sec)

UMX Sbach FPV 5.8ghz (3 min 59 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Oct 31, 2012 @ 07:05 PM | 14,809 Views
The kinetic 800 is like warmliner. It can shoot straight up and rocket till it disappears. While diving down, its fun to heard the whoosh while it passes by. But it isn't as fast, around 70mph straight and level. Overall its a great little glider, with lots of power and long stable flight times. Flies just like the ones in the simulator do, no bad habits at all!

5/31/13 HD tail video:
Kinetic 800/ Merlin tail view Baylands (4 min 31 sec)

Kinetic 800/ Merlin Baylands back view (5 min 52 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Oct 01, 2012 @ 08:17 PM | 14,934 Views
Scratch build micro 3D foamie. Great for throwing around in the backyard!

It was a quick build, goal was to have a micro that was flyable in the backyard, can hover, and is durable. Using 6mm foam its one micro that will crash and keep on flying!

Scratch Built micro 3D backyard flight (2 min 35 sec)


50mm F-22 EDF

Posted by Cheese5 | May 27, 2012 @ 05:32 PM | 15,212 Views
This was the jet that pulled me into the RC hobby, the F-22! Finally decided to buy one, modded it according to what other's have done, and now its a flying dream! Twin rudders, elevons, over 1:1 thrust to weight ratio, its a fun plane to fly.

EDIT 10/18/12 Added thrust vectoring and full tailerons. Now the controls are the same as the full scale F-22!
Posted by Cheese5 | Mar 18, 2012 @ 06:56 PM | 18,836 Views
Here's my micro glider, 21.5in wingspan. Built entirely of balsa. It glides!!! Better than I thought it would. But the balsa boom keeps breaking so a CF one would be coming up. Using lightbulb packaging for the pod. AR6400 with a 160mah lipo. Comes in at 33g AUW.

UPDATE: Replaced the balsa rod with a 2mm Cf rod, much stronger and lighter. AUW is now 29.8g. Glide times are 15~20 seconds, need to work on those launches.

9/30 25g AUW, sanded rounded wings, glide times ranging from 20~40sec.

UPDATE 6/25/14
Inspired by David's Neos glider I decided to make a model of it. Same AR6400 board with 3mm cf tube, balsa wings and balsa tail. Every bit of wood was shaved off to save weight. Flight time is not that great (need some work with sanding airfoils) but the ailerons can be programmed to be flaperons and spoilerons. Those add another dimension to flight, speed can be dumped for lift and switched around instantly. All together the glider is a 4 channel full house DLG.

Any comments would be appreciated
Posted by Cheese5 | Mar 01, 2012 @ 07:46 PM | 15,720 Views
My first Sbach is still lost somewhere in the neighborhood. Some day it'll come back.

For now I bought another Sbach and from what I learned from the first Sbach, I modded it so it wouldn't suffer through the same events than my old Sbach had. Several things were made to reinforce the entire Sbach: Epoxyed the entire nose area and some of the bottom weak points including the wing tips (added ~0.3g). added carbon fiber to elevator (added ~0.2g), and lastly the servo covers on the aileron servos (+~0.5g).

Using a 5030 prop and 240mah hyperion 2S lipo with micro deans connector, it flies very well. Almost as good as the original one. but this one came heavier stock so with the added weight it didn't do as well as the 1st one. Total weight is : 67.8g AUW. Has over 1:1 T/W ratio and mixed with flaperons can fly extremely slow to a speeding rocket zooming across the runway.

UMX Sbach hatcam flying at park (10 min 28 sec)

Posted by Cheese5 | Jan 16, 2012 @ 11:25 PM | 16,229 Views
First scratch Built micro, it flies!!

AR6400 + linear servo
Elevons 3channel
~28mph top speed
11" wingspan
15" length
AP05, 3020 prop with simple thrust vectoring

Plan from here:

Scaled down from 18.8in to 11in.
Posted by Cheese5 | Oct 03, 2011 @ 10:39 AM | 16,362 Views
Every plane has a life span, the P-51 has reached that age. It will no longer fly straight nor climb while flying. There is more glue than foam in the cowl and other places. While flying the last flight the ESC shorted out the RX so that was it. Wasn't worth the money to buy a new RX ($60) for a mustang that wouldn't fly well any more.


Flight time: 46 hours and 20 minutes.

Motors: Stock 32 hours 1 Cell brushless 14 hours, 20minutes.

Dropped 2 1.5g bombs,
reached ~1066~1600ft, (confirmed 715ft with camera on lower flights), modified with flaps, clear canopy, brushless, and bomb drop.
Morning flyer, skimming the grass was an easy thing to do

1 1/2 years old

Overall, the micro mustang was a great airplane. I think I may have modified it too much, that could be the reason for its early retirement. Now it stands proudly on my desk, a scale model to decorate.
Posted by Cheese5 | Jun 30, 2011 @ 02:14 PM | 18,406 Views
Story of the Sukhoi XP

I always wanted an airplane that will shoot straight up and keep going till it was out of sight. When I bought the sukhoi xp, that dream was almost true. It would accelerate upwards to around 100ft and then run out of steam. After a few months of flying it, the power started to die. I bought a new motor and continued to fly the XP. Soon that motor died too, along with 3 other motors. I decided to go brushless, 1S first. The ESC died all of a sudden , I was using the XP-3A from HK, it wasn't worth the money to ship it back. Then I installed a bigger ESC (6A Castle Creations), with the help of the brushless thread made my sukhoi XP to a 2S brushless rocket!!!

AP05 motor
5030 prop
Castle Creations 6A ESC
1N4001 diode
180mah and 240mah hyperion batteries

Flies like a rocket!!!! For most of the flight I was at 1/3 throttle. At half throttle the sukhoi would start to climb vertically. Over half and the power was crazy. At 75% throttle it can shoot vertical and keep climbing. At full throttle it was a blast. Pulls straight out of a hover and accelerates upwards. Everything was the same, except the sukhoi xp had twice as much power as before. Slow flight was pretty much the same, I didn't notice any tip stalling.

UPDATE: After several extreme flights, the control surfaces are started to warp and cause the sukhoi to become unstable. Made new ones and reinforced the fuseluage, 2:1 power wears down the airframe

Eventhough the ESC was pricey (at $25), it was worth every penny for the performance it gave!

This mod was made possible with Tmaster's help(used his setup).
Posted by Cheese5 | Jun 30, 2011 @ 01:57 PM | 16,678 Views
Final mod of the mustang, its getting too heavy to fly. "The more parts there are, the more parts to break". So after flying the micro mustang around with the brushless motor, I took off the pilot and flaps. The P-51D was just too heavy to fly around. It was 48g with the 240mah hyperion battery. Too heavy to fly. The brushless Ap05 1S provided about the same amount of power as before. So flaps were rarely used, it was already flying near stall speed. Now with the lightened brushless setup, it flies pretty well and more solid. More control and smoother. Flies like a larger mustang than the original micro one. The brushless mod added 2 grams to the mustang, now its flying weight is 41g with the hyperion battery.

Ap05 motor $15
XP-3A speed controller $10
5043 prop $1

Flight specs
42g with the 240mah
41g with the 180mah (no landing gear)
With landing gear +1.3g
Thrust: A bit more than 45g, the mustang wil crawl upwards in a vertical for 10-20ft (after the momentum has left it)

So far the mustang has 42 and 1/2 hours on it and will keep flying till something big happens.

Overall this mustang is a nice bird to fly around during mornings and evenings (when there is no wind), the brushless mod helped it gain a few grams of thrust and flight time, was worth the time and money put into it.
Posted by Cheese5 | Jan 15, 2011 @ 07:41 PM | 17,366 Views
The micro mustang climbs fast when the throttle is advanced to full. I tried timing its climb rate but it wasn't that acurate.Using an alitmeter will work, but it would be too heavy. Next using a camera(as someone suggested) works pretty well. Count the pixels, measure the distance and crunch the numbers. Here I'll post my altitude flights.
1st flight:
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2nd flight
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...Continue Reading
Posted by Cheese5 | Dec 29, 2010 @ 09:13 PM | 18,955 Views
Next mod in the line of mustang mods is the clear canopy. The black canopy just didn't look scale enough. So I ordered a clear canopy set from park flyer plastics and started the mod.
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1st problem I ran into while setting up. The pilot+canopy weight was 7g!!! That was 6grams over weight(I wanted the mod to only increase by <1g). So next I spend a while trimming every little bit of plastic there was. At the end I got the weight down to 2.6g for both pieces. There was nothing left to trim, so I settled on the 2.6g weight.
Everything from then on went by smoothly. Glued the canopy on, painted around the canopy. Painting the pilot took the most time. Mixing colors: (trying to make tan) "Too much yellow,(add white), too much white(add black) whoops too much black,now there is not enough brown, etc.
All up weight without landing with a hyperion 160mah was 40g. With a 180mah battery the weight was 41.5g. When I don't care for scale, I can remove the pilot(1.2g) and make the mustang a little lighter(more altitude).
I'm going to test out the mustang when the weather permits(it has been raining all day and the forcast predicts more rain.)

From this:
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To this:
...Continue Reading