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F450 Fun - New Build Coming - Very Simple

Discussion in 'Other DJI Multi-Rotors' started by ladykate, Dec 28, 2015.

  1. ladykate

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    I noticed there aren't many posts in this area - it was quite active for a while but it looks like many are buying complete systems now instead of building their own. For myself, I went to the 'build from scratch' side and have been flying racing quads and also fixed wing aircraft. I still use my P2 and F550 (and Tarot 810) for photography but I don't fly them as much as I did.

    Anyway - in the fixed wing category, our club has had a rash of airplanes stuck in trees and it has been hell trying to get them out of the trees. They are usually 50 or 60 feet up and getting a line over them has been difficult. In extreme cases, members have asked the local fire department to help and given them a donation.

    Paying $100 to get a $200 fixed wing aircraft that is probably messed up seems bad so I've been going down the path of making my own removal tool. The 'tool' is a servo actuated release that will drop a weighted line over the airplane. Usually just a shake or two (especially now with all the leaves off) are all that's needed to get the airplane down. I first put it on a racing quad (they have a high thrust to weight ratio and can pick up twice their own weight) but decided I would prefer a stabilized system so I can concentrate on placing the line more than on saving the quad from getting stuck in the tree. ;-}

    I say all that to say I'm building an F450 with the latest motors and NAZA-Lite. It will be used to pick up gliders, scary things during Halloween, and to drop lines over airplanes that succumbed to the tree from hell that we have in our flying park.

    No pictures of the build as yet - the parts are on the way. In any case, it won't be very exciting - it will be a stock build with minor attachments. Here is an example of what I'm trying to save:

    viggencrash3-13-2015-small.jpg


    Here is what the line drop module looks like:

    zmr250 line drop resized more.jpg

    This works fine - it is currently mounted on a ZMR-250 (cheap racing quad) but is what will go on the F450.
     
    #1 ladykate, Dec 28, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2015
  2. discv

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    You're right- things have gone quiet on the tech.side of all the forums. I think the new guys buying P3's etc. do not, generally come from an RC background.
    From what I am seeing, they tend to fly from the box, crash, then read the manual- to discover that their UAV is not a viable repair candidate.

    For what it's worth, I've had good results with the cheap Chinese GPS pod hooked up to a Naza v2 (poking out of the top of a scrap/rebuilt FC40)

    Your links state I do not have permission.
     
  3. ladykate

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    I think I fixed that. Hadn't used the image posting on this forum since the change!

    In any case, there is a lot of enjoyment in building and flying your own system. We race (and crash) our homebuilts all the time and it is a hoot. If I end up getting the F450 stuck in a tree, it can be taken down easily and if it is broken, it can be fixed without a problem.

    For performance, I prefer then NAZE32 controllers but the NAZA has it all over the others for stability and ease of use.
     
  4. ladykate

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    Just a quick update. The first maiden outside and the airframe vibrated badly. I double checked the recommended gains from several posts and then went to the DJI manual. The gains for the new ESCs are less than half the gains for normal ESCs. 40 percent for basic gains - not upwards of 150 as some recommend.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. tkurtz

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    Hi, what's current status of your project? I'm interested in the Flame Wheel and would love to hear current info.
     
  6. ladykate

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    Hi - good luck with your build. The F450 is a solid platform and can carry any number of goodies. Mine is meant to recover stranded aircraft from trees by dropping a line over them. Here is a short video showing the quad - haven't had to use it yet but will post videos when I do.

     
  7. tkurtz

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    Nice video! I'm not sure what attracts me to the flame wheel, I just am. I dig the industrial workhorse, foundation of your creative imagination that it offers. Do you fly phantoms? How does it compare? I like my Phantom but the flame wheel provides a better platform to, well, have fun with. Thoughts...
     
  8. ladykate

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    Yes, I have two Phantoms (because I destroyed one in an epic crash - got another - then rebuilt the first one). The Flamewheels and Phantoms are two different machines but you can build an F450 to mimic a lot of the Phantom capability. But that isn't what I wanted the F450 to do. I wanted it to fly into trees and recover without costing a fortune to repair. It also ends up being fairly fast and fun to screw around obstacles.

    I also have an F550 that I made into a video platform so it has the gimble and nice camera and all. It is more stable and faster than the Phantom but it doesn't have the loiter time. However, I have found that I don't really use long loiter times unless I'm searching for something.

    I have used the Phantoms to search for downed model airplanes - mostly in corn fields. For that I needed long flight times. I also use them to map pyrotechnic locations (I'm a licensed pyro) so we can see land features that may not be visible from the ground (like drainage issues) and to map out our current configurations so we can repeat/tweak when we return the next time.

    I've gone long range with them but that isn't my thing - I mostly did it to see when I lost the signal. Past 1 km and I never did lose it so I figured it was good enough. ;-} The Flamewheels will go that far - but you have to be careful and get them back before they run out of juice. With the FAA rulings, that is a thing of the past anyway.
     
  9. ladykate

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    Well... I finally was able to use the 450 to retrieve an airplane stuck in a tree. We had an audience and there were pictures taken but I don't have any in-hand right now. Worked as advertised - flew over the top, dropped the weighted string, pulled it down.