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ESCs burning out Help!!!

#1
Hey everyone,

I am making my first quadcopter and am following FT 210 Quadcopter - BUILD video. I am using LUMENIER 30 AMP BL HELI ESC'S. I was using Betaflight to test out the motors. Just after 20s motors spinning on very low throttle all of the ESCs got really hot. Is this normal since there are no props to cool them. After some more testing something smelled like burning and two of the ESCs died. Could this be that screws are touching the motor windings. I followed the video and using the same size of screws. I've checked the voltage going to the ESC and it's 5V. The is no short between their terminals either. I've already reorder two new ESCs. Can someone please help me solve this problem and have my first drone complete. Thanks!
 

JimCR120

Site Moderator
#2
Geetings. That sounds frustrating for sure. We have a good number of members here who enjoy helping. Do you have a photo of your quad you could share with us? It might help. Also, since you are a new member, would you be so kind as to introduce yourself and let us know more about you.

Thank you and welcome to the forum.
—Jim
 

cranialrectosis

Kite Eating Tree Trimmer
Mentor
#3
Could this be that screws are touching the motor windings.
You have to customize your screw lengths to the boom thickness. Screws touching the motor winding is always bad. Use a 1mm washer to adjust for having screws 1mm too long. I don't suggest using more than one washer.

Whatever you do, it is up to you to ensure that the screws don't get into the windings. It's just bad news when it happens.

Check out the smokestopper. I highly recommend one for preventing shorts from ruining your day.

This isn't to say that I think you have a short. This is to say, if you ever do, this can prevent you from ever having to learn what burnt SunnySky motor smells like. :black_eyed:

With no props on your copter, there is no appreciable load. No, it is not normal for your ESCs to get blazing hot when you have no props on your copter.

It is also not normal to run 5v TO your ESCs. My ESCs get full lipo power. My flight controller and receiver gets 5v. If you stated this accurately, you likely have something in backwards or a cold solder joint.

Are you running two different types of ESC?

Meanwhile, seriously, the Smoke Stopper. It takes 10 minutes to build and has saved me hundreds in electronics since. :)
 
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#4
Here is the soldering of ESCs to power board. Using multimeter ESC terminals are getting 5V. I am using all of the same type of ESCs. I replaced the red ESC.

IMG_0448.jpg
 

makattack

Snow is Coming
Moderator
Mentor
#5
So it looks like you're using esc's with builtin becs. Are these them? http://www.getfpv.com/lumenier-30a-blheli-esc-2-4s.html

The product page doesn't say if they are linear or switching bec. If they get hot while connected, depending on your battery voltage, they might get pretty hot if they are linear and on for a while. If they are switching, you shouldn't have more than one supplying regulated power. You would just disable three of them by removing the center, red pin/wire from the connectors. That shouldn't cause them to fail, but over heated becs left on for too long without cooling could cause failures. I try to use escs without becs to keep them cooler, lighter and use a separate regulator. Heck your pdb might actually have its own regulator from the looks of it which might also cause it to fight if it was a switching type. In that case, you could remove all the red pins from the escs.
 

JimCR120

Site Moderator
#9
I would also add that carbon fiber conducts so it would be important to ensure no shorting is occurring where it shouldn't be.
 

French

Construire Voler S'écraser Répéter
#10
What's your battery voltage? Your escs should be getting full voltage when the battery is plugged in, not 5V.
 

makattack

Snow is Coming
Moderator
Mentor
#13
It looks like you have tape underneath the PDB, covering the carbon fiber. Assuming your ESC's are shrink-wrapped, you may be safe from shorts. If carbon fiber gets scratched up enough to expose the raw fibers (beyond the epoxy), they are conductive. You can use a multimeter in continuity test mode to check for conductivity.

You may get 5V on your tests if you are testing against the thin red wire that comes out with the black and white wires... Those are your ESC signal input wires / regulated power output. The thicker gauge red and black wires are the power input wires for the ESC's and those should be full battery voltage.
 

French

Construire Voler S'écraser Répéter
#14
Does your digital multi meter have a continuity function? If so, test between the positive ESC pad/wire and the frame. You may also want to check for general shorts by checking the continuity between your positive and negative terminals on your XT60 (without a battery plugged in)
 

PsyBorg

Fly Angry
Mentor
#16
If you removed all of the bec red wires there should be no power to the FC. Did you somehow pull battery voltage or maybe 12v off the pdb instead of 5v?
 

cranialrectosis

Kite Eating Tree Trimmer
Mentor
#19
I think you have your wiring backwards and you are supplying full voltage to your FC on pins not rated to handle it.

Most flight controllers take 5v. Your lipo outputs 12-16v.

Your ESCs take 12-16v and if they have a BEC the BECs outputs 5v.

Your lipo powers the ESCs and if you have one the PDB. The ESCs or a voltage regulator on the PDB powers the flight controller.
 

makattack

Snow is Coming
Moderator
Mentor
#20
Oh yikes. Just took a closer look at your photo. Not familliar with the PDB, but I can see 4 small pads near the upper part of the photo that have 12V and 5V labels. You have solder blobs on the 5V pads, but you don't have wires soldered to them... Perhaps you had before and somehow undid it?

Ok, just found the PDB diagram:

http://www.mateksys.com/?portfolio=hub5v12v

Looks like there's really only one set of pads meant to power the FC and RX (via the FC common power rail). I'm afraid if you supplied full battery power to the FC and RX, they may be damaged... see the wiring diagram/example on that page for the proper connection of equipment.
 
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