Armattan Quadrocopters CF 226 Quadcopter Frame Mini-Review

Buy it once and forget about it. We're about to take a look at the first hobby product with an unlimited lifetime warranty against breakage.

Splash

Introduction

Armattan Quadrocopters CF 226

Span:8.9" (226mm)
Weight w/o Electronics:4.2 oz (119g)
Construction:Heat pressed twill carbon fiber; 2mm thick center plates with 4mm thick arms and 1mm top plate; steel and nylon hardware; nylon landing legs with rubber feet
Recommended Radio System:2.4GHz spread spectrum computerized aircraft, four channels or greater
Recommended Control Boards:KK2.1, Naze Afro Acro, Multiwii
Recommended Battery:2250mAh 3S lithium polymer, 35C minimum discharge
Recommended Motors:2822 brushless outrunner, 1800Kv or equivalent for 6" propellers; 2204 brushless outrunner, 2000 + Kv or equivalent for 5" props
Propellers:5" or 6" multirotor
Recommended ESCs:30A brushless with SimonK firmware for 6" props; 12A for 5"
Operator Skill Level/Age:Advanced, 14+
Manufacturer/Available From:Armattanquads.com, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan 81361
Prices (USD):$80 for the bare frame; $235 for the DIY version with all electronics and accessories; $265 for assembled RXR; $5 shipping for all versions

Ladies and gentlemen, you are about to be introduced to what may well be one of the most significant breakthroughs in the hobby industry.

Those are powerful words and I don't use them lightly. They apply to the new Armattan Quadrocopters CF 226 all-carbon fiber mini quad, available as a DIY kit, a fully assembled receiver-ready RTF and as a bare airframe which I will cover here in a sort of "mini-review."

The significance is this: The frame is unconditionally guaranteed against breakage of the arms and center plates in perpetuity. If any of those major components were to break in a crash, they will be replaced without question. The deal applies even if the CF 226 is sold, given or otherwise bequeathed to a new owner. The only parts of the frame itself which are not covered are the 1mm CF top plate above the control board and the hardware. Chris Leroux of Armattan Quadrocopters introduced the CF 226 on April 24, 2014 via an RCGroups.com classified ad discussion thread which may be found here.

It's easy to conclude that the CF 226 had to sacrifice light weight and performance for strength, but that isn't the case. The bare frame weighs in at a mere 119 grams, or 4.2 ounces.

The stock power setup for 6" propellers puts out three kilograms of thrust, making the CF 226 "a screamer" in Chris's own words.

For those who have been reluctant to take the multirotor plunge for any reason, the time is now to step into an Armattan.

It isn't as if anyone would break it.

Getting Things Together

The bare CF 226 frame ships with the following:

  • Two 2mm CNC milled center plates
  • Four 4mm CNC milled arms
  • One 1mm CNC milled top plate
  • Nylon landing legs with rubber feet
  • Full hardware package including standoffs of various lengths for mounting the buyer's choice of control board

Chris went me one better and sent a very nice Armattan T-shirt! Unfortunately, it's too small, but it'll go to a good home. I have a neighbor whose teenage son is into robotics.

Needed for completion are:

  • 3mm allen wrench
  • 5.5mm or 7/32 open end wrench, socket wrench or adjustable wrench
  • #2 Phillips screwdriver
  • Recommended electronics package available from Armattan or equivalent

This may well be the first model aircraft which was shipped to me in a padded mailing envelope, but such is the advantage when all of the parts are milled from carbon fiber.

As for those parts, they were neatly and securely wrapped in plastic film with all of the hardware shipped in marked zip-lock plastic bags.

No instructions are provided, but a quick look at Chris's blog introducing the CF 226 made it clear how the frame was to go together. Comparing it to the aluminum CNC 258 quad which was the first Armattan product I had the pleasure to review certainly helped. Other than the material of which they're machined, the center plates on both the 226 and 258 looked identical, meaning that a GoPro camera isn't out of the question. One should take care when mounting the arms to pay attention to the alignment of the motor mounting holes and to the proper orientation of the "A" trademark. Again, Chris's photos were a huge help.

I'd commented on the quality of the recently reviewed Tricopter CF 258, a model which has proven its worth as a fun and insanely fast flyer since that review was published. Like those of the Tricopter, the parts of the CF 226 were CNC-milled to perfection.

Once assembled, it was easy to see why Chris is able to make such a bold claim regarding his lifetime warranty; it manages to combine ridiculously light weight with incredible torsional rigidity. I didn't try and break the frame, but I did do some bending and twisting by hand which would have surpassed even the most severe of crashes.

I have the feeling that if the CF 226 could laugh, it would have done so at my efforts. It didn't bend in the slightest.

Next step: I'm getting the electronics. Soon. Very soon. As I write, I've already discussed getting a Naze Afro Acro board and all of the rest of the recommended electronics. The YouTube video of the very first RXR built for a customer is a great reason why I look forward to completing this build and it's linked below.

Photo and Video Gallery

As with all of their RXR products, Armattan provides a YouTube video demonstrating the operation of each model. This is a video of the very first CF 226 to be shipped to a customer:

For Jonathan S. (6 min 18 sec)

Chris was kind enough to forward these photos of a working prototype equipped with a KK2.1 control board:

I shot some photos myself, including a family portrait of the other Armattan models I've had the pleasure of reviewing:

Conclusion

Some of the finest multirotors in the world have come from Armattan Quadrocopters in a very short time. I honestly believe the CF 226 will quickly rise to the top of the sport quad world and it'll be hustled along by Armattan's soon-to-be-released line of custom-wound outrunners from T-Motor due by the middle of May 2014.

The fact that it's offered as a bare frame should really get multirotor DIYers hearts to fluttering.

It's true that I haven't yet flown the frame, but its incredible quality backed by Armattan's now-legendary customer service gets it two thumbs way, way up. I promise to report back in when this fantastic little frame is ready to fly!

Many thanks go to Chris Leroux of Armattan Quadrocopters for offering to send me a sample of this amazing new frame. Thanks as well are due to RCGroups.com administrator Angela Haglund for being the conduit through which all of our reviews flow.

As always, our worldwide audience is the reason we all do what we do. Thanks for visiting the biggest and best hobby site on the internet!

Pluses and Minuses

Lots of pluses here:

  • Groundbreaking warranty backed by world-class customer service
  • Easily and quickly assembled
  • Incredible power-to-weight ratio
  • Uses standard, easily obtainable components
  • Should prove to be one of the fastest, most nimble sport quads ever

No minuses were noted.

Last edited by DismayingObservation; May 13, 2014 at 09:53 AM..
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May 21, 2014, 10:18 AM
Registered User
Very good pre view of the quad. Build quality from Chris is out of this world, unless your into building I would have him do it. I like the fact that it uses six inch blades less likely to break then the bigger blades.


I would say only weakness that I've experienced is the motor shafts on the current motors that can bend on hard impact. Can be replaced, but be aware of that, maybe new motors will have resolved that one small weakness. I really like the size though.

Jason
May 21, 2014, 12:18 PM
Registered User
echoplanar's Avatar
Nice review! I can confirm this little guy is a blast to fly and has power that I would rate as insane to highly insane.
May 21, 2014, 01:14 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by echoplanar
Nice review! I can confirm this little guy is a blast to fly and has power that I would rate as insane to highly insane.
Hi Jon,

Might as well add your video review of this model, too. I think Dismaying would have added it to his review but both of you guys happened to work on this at the same time.

You guys are awesome. Many, many thanks, gentlemen.

Best,
Chris

Armattan cf 226 Quadcopter Review (9 min 28 sec)
May 21, 2014, 01:36 PM
Pronoun trouble...
DismayingObservation's Avatar
Thread OP
Our pleasure, Chris.

Good heavens, this thing is fast! I almost couldn't believe what I just saw on the video.

I'll be in touch regarding the electronics very soon. I can hardly wait to see that kind of crazy speed for myself.
May 21, 2014, 11:54 PM
Registered User
echoplanar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobepine
Hi Jon,

Might as well add your video review of this model, too. I think Dismaying would have added it to his review but both of you guys happened to work on this at the same time.

You guys are awesome. Many, many thanks, gentlemen.

Best,
Chris

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZljwnsqLNlM
Thank you for the work you do! Making a video and flying an awesome machine like this is just plain fun!

-Jon
May 31, 2014, 05:31 PM
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DismayingObservation's Avatar
Thread OP
I just ordered the electronics from Armattan! Stay tuned to this space and/or the blogs for the results.
Jun 04, 2014, 02:35 AM
Registered User

Need to purchase armattan motors, props and esc's


Greetings. Unfortunately I've bought and built a bat bone tricopter frame before discovering armattan products. Is there a way to just buy armattan motors props and esc's to finish my bat bone tricopter with? I will eventually be buying an armattan build multi rotor because of the build quality and performance. Regards, Admar -Las Vegas NV USA
Jun 04, 2014, 05:39 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Ad
Greetings. Unfortunately I've bought and built a bat bone tricopter frame before discovering armattan products. Is there a way to just buy armattan motors props and esc's to finish my bat bone tricopter with? I will eventually be buying an armattan build multi rotor because of the build quality and performance. Regards, Admar -Las Vegas NV USA
I should be able to help you. Email me: service(at)armattanquads(DOT)com

Best,
Chris
Jun 20, 2014, 01:38 PM
Pronoun trouble...
DismayingObservation's Avatar
Thread OP
All done! It flies beautifully and I wish to thank Chris for those parts and for programming the Naze Afro Acro board for me. It's a fantastic little quad based on my initial impressions and I'm looking forward to really opening up the throttle.
Last edited by DismayingObservation; Jun 21, 2014 at 08:37 AM.
Jun 21, 2014, 12:15 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by DismayingObservation
All done! It flies beautifully and I wish to thank Chris for that parts and for programming the Naze Afro Acro board for me. It's a fantastic little quad based on my initial impressions and I'm looking forward to really opening up the throttle.
You are most welcome, Sir.

Happy Flying!

Best,
Chris


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