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Posted by cyberbillp | Jun 23, 2015 @ 03:38 PM | 3,860 Views
One thing I hear all the time is the question: "Is that a drone?"

The short answer is "no".

Nothing makes a person sound more ignorant, than a lack of proper vocabulary and an inability to communicate correctly.
Even among hobbyists whom are otherwise quite bright and articulate, some still get a bit tangled up in our terminology.

So I thought; "Hey, why not write a dictionary?" It could help everyone discuss our hobby, including outsiders and the un-initiated.

If you spot errors, I'm certainly willing to correct it.

We'll start with the broadest terms and work our way down to the most specific, then address the issue at hand.

Broad Terms, could refer to Planes, Copters Gliders, etc...:

A remotely piloted vehicle. The Air Force and other agencies frequently use this term to refer to unmanned machines, controlled far from the actual device. It could be a deep sea sub, an aircraft in the stratosphere or a rock crawler on a beach.

This catch-all phrase stands for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. The USAF and other agencies use this term to describe anything that flies without people in it. It may fly a programmed course, or be remotely piloted. It's application is as wide as your imagination.

This acronym represents Small Unmanned Aerial System. Generally speaking, this is something that flies that's to small for people to fly in any ways. sUAS are also UAV's. The AMA [Academy of Model Aeronautics] uses the sUAS term frequently....Continue Reading
Posted by cyberbillp | Oct 17, 2014 @ 07:46 AM | 39,920 Views
One of the problems of Quad (or any fpv) racing comes right after the course is setup and people want to start taking practice laps. Everyone gathers together and start trying to solve the 5.8ghz frequency assignments.

Then after everyone has agreed on assignments, the first guy goes up and half way through his practice lap, he screams like a school girl as he is suddenly watching somebody else's video and his own machine slams into a tree or the ground.

Its a nightmare.

Mistakes happen, but when they happen every single week, it gets old. So, while this is not perfect, I've come up with FPV assignments to help guide racers away from 5.8ghz conflicts.

Through much group testing and experience, we've come to the conclusion you need 40Mhz seperation between center channels to avoid affecting each other. In the list I propose, this mostly holds true. But if Racer A is high on Fatshark and Racer B is low on Boscam, they should swap, or Racer B should go to Boscam A (higher), and the same between Racer C and D. They are over 30Mhz apart, so they may be ok, This needs to be tested. Feedback is appreciated.

If everyone picks the "low" channel on my chart, everything works 100%, so those should be preferred.

Here is the chart.

We've also determined that you can only run Four racers on US frequencies. If you live elsewhere you can pack in another two racers on the high and low ends.

What I've done for our...Continue Reading
Posted by cyberbillp | Mar 23, 2014 @ 11:38 AM | 4,771 Views
I did smash testing on the Bullet Proof Quad (BPQ) today at our Sunday flying spot.

I took a pipe, used it as a bat, and used the BPQ as a baseball, and tried to hit a home run. It took hit after hit before I finally managed to break the frame on the 5th or 6th home run attempt.

Try that with Carbon Fiber or G10.

It broke on the only sharp cut corner on the frame, the battery strap, Velcro cut out.

So I will update the CAD files and remove that sharp corner and make the design flow better, removing this weakness. Though arguably, if you smash it with a pole, this hard, this many times, at far greater speeds than you can achieve in flight, you you might expect it to break. Any other materiel would have been completely destroyed after the first hit.

After reflecting with Massiveoverkill on the stiffness and design, I have decided to abandon the Gecko arms and go purely with an H configuration. I will also step up to the next material thickness for the main frame. This added with the corner removal in the Velcro strap cut outs should finalize the design.

Another session smashing it around the field should prove durability to my satisfaction.
Posted by cyberbillp | Mar 12, 2014 @ 08:31 PM | 6,359 Views
What do you want in a Mini H Quad?


When you smack a tree head-on at 40+ mph, you want to know you will not have to go buy another $100+ frame. Knowing that your quad will bounce, and bounce and bounce again, is a great relaxation factor, taking the tension out of FPV, allowing you to fly with wild abandon, balls out, going places you've never gone and pushing your skills to new levels. You need a quad that you aren't afraid to fly like a bat out of hell.

It's time to introduce the Bullet Proof Quad.

Literally made from the same material that protects Military Bomb Disposal Teams, this frame is lighter and stronger than G10, does not, can not, and will not; crack, break or shatter like Carbon Fiber. It's lighter and stronger than G10, near Carbon Fiber and Kevlar in strength and positively can not be broken without an axe or chainsaw.

The main quad air frame is fully vibration isolated from the motors and is specifically designed to carry a Mobius 1080p Action Cam/DVR and use the Flip Series (30mmx30mm) flight controllers.

Yes, you can strap a GoPro on the front.

You can assemble the quad as either a Reptile, a Hex Spider or an Mini H-Quad. You can even build it as an X-Quad if you desire. Designed from the ground up to be like nothing else available, the standard Gecko configuration is for inverted motors, but if you prefer the classic "box on top" style Mini H-Quad, you can certainly assemble it that way as well. It was designed symmetrically to allow as much versatility as possible, far beyond anything else available.

Motor to motor distance varies depending on your choice of configuration. Nominally it is 250 class and supports 5 inch props.

Weight is roughly 185 grams. I weighed the prototype at 135g, but there are upgrades that should bring it up to around 180 grams. I will update once the frames arrive and I can weight the final product.