Tarot 650 Sport quadcopter drone built – part 2

Onto the camera gear. I attached a Runcam Swift pointing forwards to help with orientation when flying. The uptilt is probably a bit extreme for a big AP rig, but it can’t go any lower unless I find an M3 bolt with a much shallower head. I switched the Swift out for a Runcam SkyPlus from an older model as the bracket design allows the camera housing to clear the bolt head & fix at any angle.

Continue reading Tarot 650 Sport quadcopter drone built – part 2

Tarot 650 Sport quadcopter drone build – part 1

Toward the end of 2016 I decided that I wanted a large ‘copter for aerial filming & general ‘heavy lift’; something with a full GPS autopilot with plenty of configuration flexibility/component support, some sort of standard mounting system for equipment & enough power to safely lift arbitrary payloads of maybe a few kilograms.

Continue reading Tarot 650 Sport quadcopter drone build – part 1

Taranis X9D Plus 6 Position Switch Mod

I’m currently building a 650 size aerial photography quad with a Pixhawk controller & discovered via a Painless360 video on YouTube that a common approach to switching between the multiple (more than 3) flight modes common to a Pixhawk AP setup is to install a 6 position switch into a Taranis using the spare port S3. This has the benefit that you don’t need to combine two of the normal switches on the Taranis, which just sounds confusing to me.

Continue reading Taranis X9D Plus 6 Position Switch Mod

Wooden Dowel Quadcopter Drone

I realised one evening that I had enough spare/unused electronics for another entire quad build, but no frame. So the following morning I went to the hardware store & bought a piece of 12mm square hardwood dowel & to make myself a frame the ‘old fashioned’ way.

Continue reading Wooden Dowel Quadcopter Drone

HobbyKing ‘Spec FPV250’ Build

After some simulator time in Liftoff & FPV Freerider using my Taranis, learning how to fly rate mode, I bought a Fat Shark FPV setup to go on my ZMR. I figured having a second frame with no FPV gear on would be nice, so I could be reckless without worrying about breaking the VTX or whatever, so I grabbed the cheap ‘Spec FPV250’ kit from HobbyKing.


I was attracted by how simple the kit looked, what with the (almost) one-piece frame & bullet connectors on everything. But the design of the frame, which has almost no ‘internal’ space, meant that it was actually a bit of a pain to build while trying to keep components safe from crash damage.


The receiver’s antennas were a particular problem. Ideally they should be vertical, but I couldn’t think of any way to mount them vertically where they wouldn’t be at risk of damage (mainly from being pushed into the props) in a crash. In the end I resorted to mounting them horizontally along the rear arms, which isn’t ideal when it comes to maximizing reception, however as this is going to be a purely LOS frame I don’t imagine I will ever fly it far enough for this to be an issue.


Still going to do a range test before I fly it though! Hoping for some dry weather (& free time…) this weekend so I can go maiden it in the park :)