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My FC40 Transformation / 3.6km = 11,800ft FPV

Discussion in 'Phantom FC40 Discussion' started by IIVII, Dec 6, 2014.

  1. IIVII

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    Hey Everyone ..

    i was flying few weeks ago and one of the stock ESC's gave up midflight .. i ended up going home with my FC40 literally in pieces .. so i thought it's time to build my own long range one of a kind FPV machine .. here's what my FC40 looks like after a huge makeover .. ;)

    The specs of the reborn Fc40 :

    Frame : Alien X 500mm / cost $13 .. it's so cheap i bought 4 complete frames for the cost of one DJI shell .
    Motors: DJI E300 Black 920kv / cost $17 each .
    Video TX&RX : BOSCAM 2.4G RC802 +TS321 500mW / cost $55 .
    FPV Cam: HD 700TVL 1/3" SONY / cost $13 .
    OSD: MinNaza mod / cost $11 .
    FPV screen : ebay 7" / cost $30 .
    ESC : Q Brain 4in1 25A /cost $33 . btw. it'll need alot of work to get it calibrated with DJI s-bus receiver , so if u want somthing like plug n play go with DJI E300 ESC's.
    Battery : Multistar 4S 6600mAh / cost $44 .
    Props: 4 Pairs DJI 9450 / cost $24 .

    am still using the FC40 Naza / GPS & compass / TX & RX . i used a shoe shine sponge plastic case as a GPS pod and it worked great :mrgreen:

    i've also modded the stock DJI radio with a built in 3s 2000mah battery powering both my FPV equipments and the transmitter through a 12v to 6v UBEC. so no more AA batts every weekend :)

    Flight time with the above specs i'm gettin' an average of :

    (22-23 min) with Multistar 4s 5200mah .
    (27-28 min) with Multistar 4s 6600mah .
    (31-32 min) with Multistar 4s 8000mah .


    Range wise i went as far as 3.6km = 11,800ft and still had a solid signal as u can see in the video below :D


    The Alien X frame is not only cheap , but it's light , tough and way bigger than the phantom (500mm vs 350mm) . and it's alot more stable than the original DJI frame ever was .. especially in high wind conditions .. here are a few pix of my new FC40 :)

    IMG_20141206_202647.jpg IMG_20141206_202719.jpg IMG_20141206_202742.jpg IMG_20141206_202804.jpg IMG_20141206_202822.jpg

    My pilot's side setup with a BOSCAM 2.4G RC802 , 7" FPV screen , DV flight recorder and 2.4Ghz / 5.8Ghz Mini BiQuad Antennas:
    IMG_20141213_181022.jpg


    The Original compass .. i used a piece of plastic bent to 90° to hold the compass vertically and in-parallel with Naza
    IMG_20141206_202834.jpg




    Transmitter internal battery mod :)
    IMG_20141206_203701.jpg



    Next to a monster 700mm APM project :)
    IMG_20141206_203302.jpg




    Flying with a friend .. this video was shot with a DJI P2V+






    Flying out in the desert .. testing a Mobius cam and a little homemade 1 axis servo gimbal . the glitches u see on the FPV screen is due to my friend's P2V+ 2.4Ghz WiFi extender as we were sitting afew meters from each other ..





    3.6km = 11,800ft range test this was done with an old ZIPPY Flightmax 4s 5000mAh batt .. on a very windy day .. i could've gone alot farther , but i didn't trust that batt .. more to come ;)





    Flying in manual mode max speed (97 km), flips, loops and rolls :)

     
    #1 IIVII, Dec 6, 2014
    Last edited: May 4, 2015
    RichardFlying, SRM and capodrone81 like this.
  2. CityZen

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    Nice work. What battery gets you that flight time?
     
  3. motchjv

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    Excellent, just what I've been looking for. Whats the total weight, plus where did you get your motors and ESC, hobbyking?

    I have two spare Naza M's, FC40 system board and transmitters. I have also have various ESC's and motors, plus some spare frames. Was planning to do something like you done, but wasnt sure if it would fly, so that's why I've been TRYING to use eCalc. I like the 25min flight time? Cheers, john
     
  4. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    it's the multistar 4s 6600mah from Hobbyking .. hover time is around 30 mins with my set up .. the batt is 10c rated but it's light and well balanced .

    http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/stor ... ouse_.html


    this's a test of the same batt on a F450 frame with the same motors n props .

    http://youtu.be/o9K2V9KqUVg
     
  5. motchjv

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    Hi, Just checked and I also have the frame you used, so ready to rock and roll. Quick question, without using the FC40 system board where did you wire the Naza X3?

    Cheers
    John
     
  6. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)


    Hey John :)

    total wight with the batt is 1390g i got the ESC from HK and the motors off ebay from an authorised dealer real cheap these motors with the 9450 and 4S batt is best combination i found .. powerful (climb rate is insane compared to the stock FC40) / efficient / no heat whatsoever .

    here's the link to the motors listing :

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/131284745463
     
  7. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    u can use the original FC40 board to power the naza , but i wanted a cleaner install so i bought a DJI SBEC/LED INDICATOR MODULE it's only $16 from the same seller i got the motors from :)

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/131302574238
     
  8. motchjv

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    Great help, cheers Pal. Might even have one if those BEC indicators. It's amazing how many bits and pieces you can build up over a summer.
     
  9. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)


    glad i can help :)
     
  10. OEKA

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    wow, awesome build.

    Kinda wondering about doing this myself. I somewhat regret buying my FC40, i think i rather should have bought the DJI flamelwheel F450 kit.
    http://bit.ly/12zULfk (With E300 ESC´s and DJI 2212 920KV) Is it possible for me to rebuild the FC40 to this kit, and how hard is it to get the compass to work?

    Best regards
    Oyvind
     
  11. motchjv

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    I just bought this kit on eBay for £90, should get it Tuesday. I have a spare naza-m v2 and phantom GPS, LED and lightweight frame, so instead of rebuilding my FC40 I'm going for a new build. I need to lift about 1500g and I want 25min. The open frame will allow me to experiment with larger batteries.
     
  12. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    of course it's possible .. infact u can reuse everything from the FC40 , and i mean everything .. board/esc's/motors etc... but if u wanna have a rocketship with a 4s batt and have a clean install u should consider the DJI E300 ESC's and DJI power module /led .

    as for the compass take a look at pic #8 in the original post :)
     
  13. OEKA

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    Thanks for the answer. Yeah, if i should rebuild it i would do it with new escs and motors (As linked in my post) :) Its only that i have heard some people having alot for trouble with the compass after a rebuild.. :)
     
  14. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    No problems with the compass whatsoever , i've done alot of testing and the compass works perfect as positioned in pic #8 .
     
  15. motchjv

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    So pic 8 is the original compass from the fc40? Whats that black material covering it?

    Cheers
    John
     
  16. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation :)

    yes it's the original fc40 compass .. the black material is a piece of plastic bent to 90° to hold the compass vertically and in-parallel with naza :)
     
  17. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation .. 3595m range test video added :

    range test video added .. check the end of the first post :)
     
  18. wattage

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation .. 3595m range test video added :

    Wow, stunning range! I take it the biquads are the secret here? Is that separate 2.4 and 5.8 antennae for control and FPV respectively?
     
  19. motchjv

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation .. 3595m range test video added :

    Well I tried the FC40 upgrade and ran into some problems. Here is my list of hardware


    DJI F450 frame.
    DJI E300 Tuned Propulsion System 4 Axis Combo - 15A ESC's - 9.4 x 4.3 Props
    Original NAZA-M v2 from FC40
    Original GPS and compass from FC40
    5.8 GHz receiver from FC40
    LED from FC40
    NAZA PMU V2

    I mounted the GPS about 2in above the frame and underneath I positioned the grey plastic covered copper shield from original FC40. I also position the compass vertically on one of the legs.

    So whats the problem? Well, the compass calibration seems to work OK, plus the GPS is picking up 6+ satellites, however every now and again the LED flashes red/organge which I think means GPS error. When I first take off it hovers OK for a few seconds but then starts to drift off quite suddenly forward and to the right.

    I tried increasing the P values from the defaults FC40 settings to higher values but doesn't seem to make a difference. One thing I didn't do is position the GPS facing forward, could that be the problem? Problem is, I can't test it out with GPS in forward position until I get another leg for the frame as in the last test one of the legs busted. Be interested to know if the GPS needs to be at the front and pointing forward?

    Cheers
    John
     
  20. IIVII

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    Re: My FC40 Transformation .. 3595m range test video added :

    the biquads help alot and yes these are 2 biquads each tuned to a specific frequency .. i attached them ontop of eachother then used 2 plastic pieces to mount them to the controller . it's a very compact setup .. no tripod and extra wires hanging around and the range as u can see is awesome ;)