In the Nov 2015 EAA meeting I brought in my Tri Copter to show the group, it was convenient as the main goal was to bring the TC to the Dyer Park drone race to get some aerial coverage and try out the new headplay goggles.
I put together a summary for the EAA 203 members, and it may be helpful for you:
they usually have 2 new episodes a week and it beats what’s on Cable TV.
Best way to learn to fly a Multi Rotor would be with a mini quad, out of the bunch the Blade Nano QX is one of the best ones, it is very durable and flies just like bigger machines like the one I brought in. it can be bought on Amazon or at the Hobby Shop in Jupiter, or Graves Hobby up in Orlando (same price except for Tax)
RTF (copter / TX / usb charger)
The charger hooks up to 5v USB like a smart phone, Amazon does sell some 110V to 5V USB adapters
As a starting point something like the Nano QX would be an excellent holiday gift for your kid / grand kid, I bought my nephew one 2 years ago. If they have interest in going further its a good stepping stone, if they show no interest its under $100 and you could use it.
Most of the multi rotor electronics comes from Asia with few options for north America / Europe, but if it can get the next generation of Americans interested in Aviation than it will help. Big thing is I would use a desk top / lab top to view their site and there is a filed for the USA warehouse only and the west coast location usually has more selection than the east coast. I use PayPal for there orders and I have to call the bank that is tied to that account for a “temporary buy from China unlock”
My tri-copter has:
- DT 750 motors
- AFRO 25 amp ESCs
- KK2.1 flight controller
- Spectrum DSM2 receiver
- Metal gear servo
actually is carrying more and more stuff including multi rotor frames, motor / esc / prop power packs and tilt mechanisms, Flite Test is also Based in Ohio.
Amazon is also carrying more and more multi rotor parts.
If your in Orlando, one of the Best / well stocked hobby shops in the Country is just NW of Down Town https://www.gravesrc.com/
pricing is very competitive if not the same as internet pricing.
The Swedish designer of the Tri Copter David Windestål has been a part of flite test and has his own web site http://rcexplorer.se
Some good flite test YouTube episodes
As for FPV, usualy to get good quality down link footage you want to have something that can carry a Mobius or Go Pro, Blade and Hubsan both have integral FPV quads including a QX model but the video quality is low.
Platforms like the Inspire do have good cameras but compared to a DIY scratch build you are paying out the wazoo for it.
beyond the well known and $$$ Go Pro, my tri-copter is equipped with a Mobius action cam that can now be bought on Amazon
This camera is a good alternative for an in cockpit camera for your homebuilt plane, the profile is very small however it has no remote (start / stop) like a go pro so it would not make a good wing tip cam etc…
As for Safety, These Are Aircraft operating in the National Airspace System so:
- Do not operate near or at an airport unless it is authorized / coordinated with the airport (Demo at SNF etc…)
- same goes for other controlled airspace and TFR’s
- Do not fly over crowds, these things do not auto rotate but instead drop like a rock if something goes wrong, keep in mind where it will fall. For Sports Events etc fly next to / not over.
- Manage your range, know when you need to turn back to land.
- Follow all safety procedures when charging Lipo batteries, powering up the multi rotor (props are sharp).
As EAA members, Ambassadors to aviation & Young Eagles volunteers … hopefully the information above will be of use and put a positive message on the Leading Technology that is already inspiring the next generation of Aviators.