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Sep 11, 2019, 11:51 PM
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Thread OP
Help!

Vexed by Hex....Help with rescued Tarot Hex?


Rural North Idaho, at least 100 miles from any RC storefront (And the ones I've called are unable to help)

I adopted a Tarot 650 Pro Hexacopter from a business bankruptcy. Story I got before I saw it was it was wrecked, however once in my possession, I saw no damage and have checked it to the the point of motor run-up...seems fine. It had no remote control radio, so to check it out I got a cheap FlySky FSI6 and receiver for the drone (6ch). So far I have identified as operational:
Tarot 650 Pro Frame with (untested) retractable landing gear.
The FSI6 radio and receiver
A TX58-2W video transmitter (Also got a cheap 5.8Khz monitor)
An unknown brand OSD
A 3 axis gimbal for a gopro also works.
2) 5000MAh 6cell batteries
All motors/escs seem fine and respond to control inputs, likely some need reversing.

A PixHawk 2.4.8 APPEARS to work in that the motors and gimbal respond to the remote control. It has a 3DR GPS? next to the PixHawk module, and a 3DR 433mhz transmitter and/or receiver????

I downloaded QGroundcontrol, and set-up the drone. Quite likely there are errors here, acts like at least the 1 and 2 channel need to be reversed. I have the drone leashed by a semi-elastic cord on the 4 ends of the landing gear. It can rock, but not far enough to strike a prop or the camera gimbal.

Concerns:
What is the 433Mhz 3DR unit?
Is the GPS mount OK here, seems close to other electronics?
Does QGroundcontrol have a "relative" flight mode where forward/back/left/right is relative to "Home" and independent of the drones orientation.
Suggestions for getting QGroundcontrol (or other similar) incorporated in a flight monitor (tablet+ Transmitter receiver???)

Seems ready to fly, but heavy to the gimbal end. Is this normal for a manual take-off and indicative of a need for trim?
Radio suggestions? AT least as far as number of channels for flight-modes, Gear, and gimbal/camera control.

I do not get the steady Green light on the PixHawk, only a steady Blue....even when showing 10 or more GPS sats. Do I need to be in a particular flight mode? Am I missing any stabilizing equipment?

Interest is as a camera platform, ease of flight is a priority. I have very little invested here, am willing to update about any component if it will aide in flight ease and stability. Have even considered changing controller to a NAZA if I can't get along with the PixHawk.
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Sep 12, 2019, 09:49 AM
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PatR's Avatar

Vexed by Hex....Help with rescued Tarot Hex?


The 433MHz module is a telemetry radio used for communications during autonomous operations. It has two components; one on the aircraft and one for a computer and used for programming, commands, and communications when using a laptop in conjunction with an RC transmitter.

The frequency requires you have a HAM radio license. 3DR sold two versions, one in 900MHz and the 433MHz.
Last edited by PatR; Sep 12, 2019 at 11:52 AM.
Sep 12, 2019, 12:33 PM
FA3PR9WM79
Oldgazer's Avatar
Tarot doesn't make a 650 Pro Hex. They do however make a a 650 Sport QUAD and a 680 Pro Hex. I have one of each.

That FlySky radio gear is barely adequate.

A better way to mount the GPS is either on a mast mount, or you and add a canopy and mount the GPS on top of the canopy.

To get the aircraft in balance, move the battery AFT (towards the rear).

You need to start reading HERE: http://ardupilot.org/copter/

The OSD is an "old" MinimOSD and it is more than likely running some form of the equally ancient ArduCam OSD firmware.
Last edited by Oldgazer; Sep 12, 2019 at 12:44 PM.
Sep 12, 2019, 12:37 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Thanks!
If I want to use a computer/tablet for QGroundcontrol can I use the same 5.8GHz I use with the monitor, or would I then need the two different radios?
Sep 12, 2019, 01:03 PM
FA3PR9WM79
Oldgazer's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by AHexOnMe
Thanks!
If I want to use a computer/tablet for QGroundcontrol can I use the same 5.8GHz I use with the monitor, or would I then need the two different radios?
No.

First off, I wouldn't use qGC. Its good software, but it is aimed at professionals who fly flight controllers that are using the PX4 Flight Stack firmware which is also aimed at professionals. I prefer Mission Planner and ArduCopter.

Second, the telemetry radios come as a pair. The Air Radio is connected to Pixhawk, and the Ground Radio plugs into a USB port on Ground Control Station (GCS). The radios allow the GCS and Pixhawk to talk to each other. I use 915mHz.

Third, 5.8mHz is for video...
Sep 12, 2019, 01:32 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Thanks! I only got the Flysky because it was cheap with just enough channels to test (Basic flight, then 1 for gimbal or gear, 1 for flight mode)...the initial info I had was the drone was not functional/crashed. I will trade it in once the drone is proven worth the effort/cost.
Sep 12, 2019, 03:50 PM
FA3PR9WM79
Oldgazer's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by AHexOnMe
Thanks! I only got the Flysky because it was cheap with just enough channels to test (Basic flight, then 1 for gimbal or gear, 1 for flight mode)...the initial info I had was the drone was not functional/crashed. I will trade it in once the drone is proven worth the effort/cost.
Roger that. After you get the radio, compass, accelerometers and ESCs calibrated, most every thing else can be checked out on the bench.

A major milestone is verifying the Pixhawk is healthy and functional. Then you can move on to the calibrations, and everything you need is in the docs that I linked to. Here is the doc for Mission Planner: http://ardupilot.org/planner/index.html
Sep 12, 2019, 04:04 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
The frame might be a 680 pro, the stylized small logo is hard to see even under magnification. Estimate the drone was made in 2017 , that was the date on the RC receiver before I swapped it out.
Sep 13, 2019, 02:13 AM
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PatR's Avatar
Just measure the wheelbase. The “Pro” part has little importance.


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Sep 13, 2019, 12:32 PM
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Thread OP
Is the 3DR GPS worth keeping? If not, suggestions for replacement keeping in mind I am in mountainous, deep canyons (including North America's Deepest!) sometime heavily timbered. The handheld GPS and small drones I've used sometimes often have a hard time getting signal.
Sep 13, 2019, 04:39 PM
FA3PR9WM79
Oldgazer's Avatar
If it is genuine, it's pretty old. Contemporary favorite is the uBlox M8N .

With that said, flying in canyons makes any GPS useless. The problem is the receiver MUST have a clear unobstructed view of the entire sky. Diving into a canyon is like putting the ON/OFF switch in the OFF position.
Sep 14, 2019, 11:19 PM
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Thread OP
UPDATE: I got the PixHawk to the steady green "Ready to Fly" and it responds to controls, best estimate is that it took around 20mins even though the monitor said it had 8 satellites fairly quick, within a couple of minutes.

Hand holding, the artificial horizon display in the video monitor responds as I tip the drone.

Have ordered the uBlox M8N and a mast. And a new 915MHz radio pair for telemetry.

Extended the length of the landing gear feet with a couple carbon fiber arrows! (no fletchings or tips...Like I said, I live in Idaho! lol).

Radio:
Basic flight 4, mode 1 or 2 channels, camera gimbal 1 or 2, landing gear 1,
What am I missing? Is a 10 channel going to have me covered in concert with tablet/phone/laptop control?
Sep 16, 2019, 08:30 PM
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PatR's Avatar
10 is good.


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