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Arducopter: tiny quadcopter build log

1) Materials : Kite set 4mm Kite set 6mm Carbon tube 4x2mm (4mm outside, 2mm inside) Plywood + vinyl 18-11 2000kv motors Turnigy 6A ESC Battery : 3S610 to 3S800

2) We need to drill a bigger hole on motor mounts (they are 3mm). We use a 3.5mm drill bit

3) Also on middle piece (the piece that makes the cross).

4) Mount the main arm (25cm carbon tube)

5) Mount the two arms (with 2 pieces of 12.3cm carbon tube for the other main arm) and also two aditional carbon tubes ( 13.7cm long) on each side. Note: the center piece is really optional, it´s posible to mount the quad wihout it.

6) Cut two 1mm plywood pieces (you can use carbon ones if you want)

7) Now this should look like this (don´t glue yet)

8) Cover the outside faces of plywood with some vinyl [optional]. I use blue one 9) Glue the carbon tubes to the plywood pieces with Epoxy.

10) Now this is your frame :-) The weight will be around 38 grams at this step.

11) Install APM board + shield + receiver. I used two layers of foam tape (one 4mm thick and one 1mm thick).

12) Time to install the motors. If you want to fix the motors [optional] you could make some cuts with a cutter on the base of the motor and apply a small amount of cyano before install. Be carefull, the motor should run freely (you could test this before apply the cyano)

13) Install ESCs. As always in quads you should connect the ESC´s in parallel. I used the setup that you could see in the photo. You need also a conection between the battery and the APM board. You could use double side tape to mount the ESCs

Note: don´t tight too much the fastener near the motor or you can broke any of the thin motor cables. Check that your motors spin in the right direction!, if not, reverse it changing two of the cables that connect ESC to motor. 14) Twist front-left and back-right motors to compensate for torque. In this frame this adjust it´s very easy because you can twist the motor base piece against the round tube until you get the desired angle. You don´t need a high precision adjust here, the yaw control compensate a bit for this. If you want to make a good adjust you should use the acrobatic mode, in the configurator adjust the yaw I term in the acrobatic mode to 0. Then fly the quad and twist the motors until your quad is stable in yaw (with the yaw stick at center, 1500us)

IMPORTANT NOTE : When you connect the four ESCs to APM only use white and black cables, DON´T connect red cables (Vcc). We are going to connect the battery directly to the APM. If you see in some photo that I am connecting also the red cable from ESCs it´s because I have removed the center pin of the connector, so I am not connecting the red cable (Vcc) from ESCs, only signal and ground. TEST Now you should be able to start testing, follow the steps and configure all the params with the configurator (as in normal arducopter project). Go to the wiki: (ArduCopter Quad section) Basically you need to : - Calibrate each of the ESCs (you can do this manually connecting them to your receiver) - Load code into APM (using Arduino IDE) - Run configurator tool - Execure Initial Setup -> Initialize EEPROM - Calibrate transmitter - Check that all is right but if you want you could add some more things: 15) [optional] Battery monitor. You need to solder a cable from Vcc (+) to analog input AN0 and solder a 4.7K resistor in this analog input. Now solder a buzzer (I extracted mine from a battery alarm: idProduct=7223) in the pins you could see in the photo. Note that buzzer has a + mark

16) [optional] Add lights (highly recommended) and sonar Lights are directly connected to the balance port of the battery. I used this ones ( (I painted the background in black) Sonar is connected to the pitot port of the shield. Sonar is Maxbotics LV-EZ0. I added also a 16uF capacitor in the sonar to filter noise.

A final detail : I put a 4mm thick foam tape from hobbyking in the middle of the two plywood pieces to reduce some vibrations and to get a better finish

That´s all... and remember that this are only a guideline... Some final images of the complete setup:

Have fun !! Jose Arducopter Team (