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Lunar Module Quadcopter Project

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#1


I posted an introductory message about some of my model rocket and R/C activities, in the new member part of the Forum:
https://forum.flitetest.com/index.php?threads/new-member-georgeg-rockets-r-c-planes.57127

The following is a recap of a Lunar Module Quadcopter project I began in October 2016, though I had been thinking about it since April 2015 (or in another way, since 1970).

Some of the info about the Flight Controller (Mini-APM using Arducopter) and Calibration may be old hat to some of the readers. I originally wrote it for a different audience (Rocketry Forum) who know little about how Multicopters even work. But I left in some of it here for those who are not multirotor fliers, or even MR fliers who use pre-programmed FC’s with limited options compared to what Arducopter can do.

When I got into model rocketry in 1970, there were some “dream projects” I thought would be neat to do someday. A few of them, I’ve ended up doing. And things much later, that I never thought I’d be able to do.

But one of them, seemed so wildly farfetched……it could only be a “dream” and never a reality.

As the Apollo program was going on with lunar landings, I had an idea for an “ultimate dream model” - A model of the Lunar Module that I could fly by R/C, hover, and land (I wasn’t into R/C at all at the time, that too was a dream for someday, maybe). For 1970 an R/C Lunar Module was an insanely impossible model to even think might be possible to do.



But what was even more farfetched at that time was to be able to have R/C small and light enough to be able to control such a model. And most critically have the ability to keep itself level, using technology that in 1970 would have cost millions and weighed dozens of pounds (for the Gyro-based guidance system itself) instead $30 and weighing well under an ounce. Back when a “computer” would require its own room in a house, not fit in your pants pocket or on your wrist.

Well, decades later, all sorts of massive changes for computers, R/C, micro-controllers, and incredibly tiny and accurate gyro and accelerometer sensors (cell phone and “Wii” technology). Improvements in R/C gear, smaller, way better batteries (LiPo’s). And some incredibly brilliant development of a Rube Goldberg flying model contraption called a Multicopter. Using a gang of electric motors and model plane type props to make a helicopter model fly incredibly well, thanks to the use of the tiny gyro and accelerometer chips on the same board as an Arduino type micro controller, programmed to make it fly.

I got to try a few quadcopters, but didn’t really get into it until early 2015. I got a $10 nylon frame for a “250” sized racing quadcopter, found/ordered the parts it would need (like Speed Controllers, motors, props, Flight Controller) and built it. It was incredible to fly, a lot of fun.

And then…. I got to thinking about the old ultimate dream model from 1970.

I could perhaps make a flying R/C Lunar Module, using Multicopter technology! OK, so the original idea was rocket thrust….. but that’s still not practical for me in any case. While in theory an extremely fine-throttleable hybrid rocket motor for hobbyists could maybe be made, it would require lots of hobby dollars and time, and someone else’s expertise to make that happen someday (and even with gimbaling, it would need some means of controlling the roll axis).

So, I planned to build a Quadcopter version. I even went so far as to make up a very crude octagonal box out of poster paper, to represent the shape of a Descent Stage, and mounted that on top of my 250 Quad. Well, it flew, but it flew like it was “drunk”, from the mass and drag on top, and the way that in the top view the octagonal box blocked some of the airflow from the four propellers, the thrust was reduced and it just did not handle well. But I didn’t expect it to fly great, I just wanted to get some idea of what it would be like. I planned to build a Lunar Module Quad a few months later, fall of 2015. But other things came up, and so I pushed it a year to October 2016.

Once I did want to “start building”, well, not so fast. First, a lot of things to figure out. What size? And was I going to build that crazy jigsaw assembly of an Ascent Stage piece by piece from custom hand-drawn patterns and hand-cut pieces? No way! This is a flying project for fun, not a detailed scale project. So for the Ascent Stage, I would use patterns for a cardboard cutout model, printed onto thick poster paper, at a scaled-up size.



OK, even a cardboard cutout model of something like this is not something simple to throw together quickly, but still far easier than drawing up and cutting out pieces from scratch, and painting the various colors. There are several cardboard model options in 1/48 scale. So again, what size? 1/24 would be smaller than I’d like. 1/12 would be really nice, very impressive size. But pretty heavy, requiring some really big powerful motors, more expensive Speed Controllers (ESC’s), more expensive props, and really big expensive batteries.

After running some numbers and some guesstimates on the likely mass for the structure, plus the mass of the motors, ESC’s, battery pack and such, 1/16 scale seemed to be about right for what i wanted to do. I figured it might weigh about 1400 grams of so all up weight. I checked into RC groups to ask some questions, compare what kind of motors, props, ESC’s and battery capacity was used for a model of about the size and weight of mine. Based on that, I then tried the components in the multicopter versions of “Ecalc”, to determine flight performance:



The controller runs “Ardupilot” and can be programmed using “APM Mission Planner”
http://www.ardupilot.org/planner/index.html
 
Last edited:

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#2
So with the size and major components determined, then to plan out the actual construction. I used some drawings of the LM to determine the size more accurately for drawing up a top view pattern for the Descent Module. Some of the drawings would also be useful later for determining size or patterns for other assemblies.


I had a plan for doing this project in three phases.

Phase 1 was to get the basic model, pretty much the bare Descent stage octagonal structure, flying as a Quadcopter to just see *IF* it worked decently. If it didn’t work for basic concept reasons, such as poor flight characteristics, then it would end there. If it did work but had some damage during early testing…. at least it would not be damaging more difficult parts to be added later, or ruining the appearance.

Phase 2 - Passing basic flight testing, to begin working on permanent additional assemblies such as the Ascent Stage (made of poster paper printed from scaled-up cardboard model patterns), mostly-accurate looking legs, and Base plate (hatch) with descent engine nozzle.

Phase 3 - Make-over to make it look good and realistic, adding gold foil or gold mylar, adding black coverings, markings, SOME details (like ladder), RCS nozzles, and some other extra goodies.

But this is NOT intended to be a really accurate “scale model”. There are lots of very accurate scale models of Lunar Modules sitting on shelves, tabletops, inside glass cases, in museums, and so forth. THIS is for FLYING. So it only has to look like a LM in the air (ignoring the arms, motors, and props), not super-accurate. But I did want it to look right in the basic shape and proportions, and to try to make it look pretty good.

My goal was for it to be the BEST multirotor R/C flying Lunar Module in the world. But just by the fact that if it flew at all, it would become the best……. because from my google searching, nobody else had done one!

Although I do have to give credit, a gentleman in Australia, Peter Aylward, built a 1/20 model using two coaxial rotor blades. It was an existing coaxial Copter frame with the fuselage converted to a Lunar Module. He made this a few years ago, apparently by November 2012. He only made two posts on RC Groups about it, no updates on the model.

 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#3
Back to to the 1/16 Lunar Quadule…..

I made up a crude mockup of the Descent Stage using foam board. That was useful in getting an idea of the actual size at 1/16 scale, and for planning out how to do the build and where/how to mount various components. As much as possible would be mounted inside of the Descent Module, including batteries, ESC’s, wiring, and so forth. To have access to all of that….. it would be necessary to have a large opening in the bottom, to be covered over later by a base plate that would include a simulated Descent engine nozzle. If this was a car……the removable base plate would be like a car hood to access the engine compartment.

The arms for holding the motors/props would be 10mm (about 3/8”) square graphite tubing. That would be sturdy/stiff enough for the job as well as allow running the motor wiring inside of the hole inside.

Here is a photo of the foam board mock-up at right next to a Phantom 1 quadcopter.


The actual Descent stage is built up mostly using Basswood in two layers that is cross-grain for the top and bottom, plus balsa vertical posts and later the sides were filled in with balsa. The arms are 3/8” (10mm) square graphite tubing. The main vertical structural load for the legs is provided by 1/16” music wire “Y” assemblies securely anchored into the top bulkhead of the descent stage.



Below is a view of the Descent Stage looking inside the bottom. The four long bolts neat the center were later replaced by even longer ones. Those bolts serve several purposes. One if to anchor the PDB board inside, and after adding spacers, a wood plate to anchor the battery pack inside. On the other side (top side), the heads of the bolts anchor the anti-vibration mount for the Flight Controller.


Wiring harness. At lower right corner, the Deans “T” connector for the Lipo battery. Upper left, a couple of connectors coming from a 5 volt voltage regulator red that shrink over the regulator). At bottom, slightly left, two black ground wires for future use, and two connectors to provide power directly from the battery pack (rated 11.1 volts, usually over 12 volts fully charged). The other wiring in four places are to the 30 Amp ESC’s to power and control the motors. The white wire coming off of each ESC (twisted with a black wire and connector) is the control wire that was plugged into the appropriate connector from the Flight Controller, to control the speed of each motor. The ESC’s outermost red, yellow, and white wires, with “bullet” connectors, are the three wires to run a brushless outrunner motor.

 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#4


The Descent Stage with the motors mounted onto it. Also, used foam board to make up an almost profile rectangular dummy of the Ascent Stage. I added this in part to simulate the aerodynamic drag effects in forward flight. Also, for visual orientation of where “front” was (Used a front view of a color/makings drawing, printed hit out and bonded it to the foamboard). No attempt to make it look accurate in 3D since that’ was a Phase 2 thing, while Phase 1’s objective was to just get it off the ground for flight testing, regardless of the looks.

The receiver was hooked up to one of the +5V connectors.

Mini-APM Flight Controller (F.C.) has a LOT of wires, many of which are not used for this project. Of the R/C signal input wires, six were connected between the 6 channel receiver and the F.C. Had to double-check later to confirm that the correct channel axis from the transmitter (such as throttle and pitch) were being read by the F.C. on the correct axis…… for example throttle stick on the transmitter causing roll inputs to the F.C. would be BAD! Also, the output wires from the F.C. t control the motors, four of those were pugged into the correct ESC control wire (white) to control each specific motor. This also is critical to be done correctly, if two control wires to two ESC’s were swapped the model would go out of control.

Fortunately, the APM Mission Planner software helps tremendously with the set-up. The model type is chosen in this case an “X” Quadcopter. Calibration begins, first with the accelerometers. The model is placed flat upright, a key pressed, then click a button, then rotate the model to the left, right, nose down nose up, and upside down, clicking at each step, to calibrate it. This is how the F.C. knows which way is up and can detect tilt errors (along with the use of accelerometers and massively impressive computing to keep track of its orientation once in the air). Compass gets calibrated. And then the R/C channels are calibrated. The transmitter sticks are moved to their full extremes, and also toggle switches being used (I’m using switches on channels 5 and 6). The software takes not of the responses. This is when the correct channel response is confirmed, both for the axis (pitch on transmitter is pitch onscreen) and the direction (pitch-up is confirmed as pitch up and not down).


Flight Modes are also set up, selected by toggle switches. I did not have the GPS module in it at first, s
o it flew mostly on “Stabilize” mode (#6). With GPS installed, then it could do RTL (Return To Launch, landing where it was when powered up) or other things like “Loiter” (hover over the same spot regardless of wind).

For those who are really interested in the nitty-gritty of the software set-up and settings for the Flight Controller using APM Mission Planner, check out this video:

With the APM F.C. programmed, it was almost ready for flight. But the ESC’s needed to be calibrated. The computer cable was disconnected, and the flight battery plugged in to power everything. The process is documented in this youtube video link:

It was during the ESC calibration that I really determined which way the motors were turning. Then I swapped 2 of the 3 wires on two ESC’s to make the motors spin the other way as needed.

For power, I decided to use a single 3000 mAh 3S (3 cells in series, 11.1V) battery so I could evaluate the flight durations. Since the model would weigh more after adding various other parts, and might also weigh more if I used a bigger battery later, I also added a second 3000 mAh battery for ballast. This brought the flying weight up to about 1400 grams…. which was my guesstimate for the model (1400-1500 range). I added a mount to hold the batteries and to also hold two velcro straps to hold the batteries. Later, I bought two 5000 mAh 3S Lipos which gives it a flight time of at least 12 minutes plus 2 minute safety margin.

And I attached the propellers, 10” diameter by 4.5” pitch, making sure the CW and CCW props were on the right motor locations.
 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#5
So, November 4th (2016), it was ready to fly…… but had no legs. But it did not need “legs” to fly, just something to help keep it from falling over. So, I drilled some holes into two 3/8” dowels and bolted those in place on the bottom of the Descent Stage.

Took it outside, set it up. Turned on the transmitter. Plugged in the battery in the model. After initialization of the APM F.C., it was ready.

Armed, throttled up, and then…. THIS.


Took off and flew OK! Climbed at half throttle, so it showed the calculations were good. It flew stably, not wallowing around. I had promised myself that if it technically “flew”, but wobbled and was not a good flier, I was going to cancel the project. It passed that test with flying colors…. so to speak,.

That night, I added some crude legs, and flew it more the next day. Also changed the Gemfan props to MUCH better ones, by APC. Less noise, better thrust.



Also, I added the GPS receiver. It needs to be as far as practical away from EMI sources as well as anything that can can affect the compass sensor, so it was attached to a tower structure above the APM Flight controller. The red/blue parts of the tower came from Nylon spacers that are used a lot for kit and homebuilt multicopters. Also near the bottom you can see the APM F.C. on its vibration mount and some of the wiring running thru holes inside the Decent Stage.


So, flight #3 (well, it had several takeoffs and landings using the same battery pack). Video shot be a GoPro mounted to my bike helmet (note shadow).


This video shows a few things. For one, the LM Quad had a bit of an amplified “roar” to it because the balsa/basswood descent stage had an open hole in the base (Battery, electrical, and R/C gear access) that acoustically amplified the vibrations. It got quieter after I added a cover to it, and later added a proper heat shield and Descent Engine assembly to cover it. Also, I was flying it in Stabilize mode. I had some hard landings as a result, as seen at 1:12 in the video below. Broke a leg and just took off again anyway since I wanted to continue test flying the new model. The beeping is a low voltage alarm that I had not set correctly yet, it had enough voltage left to fly some more, and this video was after a couple of other hops on that battery.


LATER, I deleted Stabilize mode in favor of Altitude Hold mode. For those who do not know, In Altitude Hold mode, the throttle stick is no longer acting like a real throttle. Once set up right, middle throttle produces hover. Lowering throttle from middle causes descent. “Cutting:” throttle does NOT cut the motors, it only increases the descent rate to the maximum rate of descent that has been programmed for Arducopter. Same for moving the throttle stick above middle, the more the stick is moved up, the climb rate increases.

Interestingly, the REAL Lunar Module’s “throttle” worked much like that for the landing phase, The Commander had an “Plus” button and a “Minus” button to press for rate of descent (or ascent, as it could climb if needed, but IIRC never did while trying to land). One press changed the rate by one foot per second. To go from say 10 ft/sec descent to 5 ft/sec decent rate, the commander needed to press the “+” button 5 times. The Flight Computers onboard caused the thrust to increase or decrease according to what was necessary to achieve the vertical rate that was commanded. Keep in mind the LM kept getting lighter by the second due to fuel burn , so even to hover the computer would have to gradually decrease the thrust in order to maintain hover.

Once I changed to Altitude Hold mode and got rid of Stabilize mode, this model became a really sweet flier. And more realistic, too. Also, I have usually flown it in GPS Loiter mode (when the compass is working well enough for GPS to hold position). And Loiter mode also uses Altitude Hold (while GPS works to hold it in place horizontally rather than drift with the wind).
 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#6
Phase 1 basic flight testing was completed. So, on to making more accurate parts such as the legs and Ascent Stage. I used Evergreen plastic tubing to fabricate a master for the horizontal leg braces. Then used clay to help make a 2-piece RTV mold for casting that part. Before casting, I bent some .039” music wire to act like “rebar” inside the resin casting (the cast resin is relatively brittle). Image below does not show the other half of the mold.


The casting resin was Alumilite, which begins to gel in 2-3 minutes. I mixed up a lot, poured into both halves of the mold, and quickly squished the two halves together, with excess resin squeezed out. Alumilite cures in about 5-10 minutes, but I left each casting alone for 30 minutes or more to cure stiff. After casting, there was some “flashing” that needed to be trimmed away. The music wire reinforcement worked out great to make it strong enough.

Each assembly was attached to the Descent Stage using 6/32 nylon screws, into blind nuts glued in the Descent Stage. Used nylon rather than metal screws, so in case of a crash the nylon screws would snap from the shear force, rather than rip out the blind nuts. That was pretty much the second line of defense for sacrificial parts to break more easily than other more critical parts. The primary sacrificial parts are the lower legs, which are 1/4” wood dowels.



So, it began to look a bit more realistic.


Also made up a base plate to simulate the heat shield, using foamboard. And cut a plastic drinking cup to simulate the engine nozzle. To work on the inside of the descent stage, and install/replace battery packs, it is necessary to remove the base plate and work on the model upside down. I needed something to hold it upside down. So, I found a suitable cardboard box and cut four slots into it for the rotor arms to fit in between to hold it that way. That has turned out to be a great way to work on the model.


So, by December 2nd, 2016, it had the improved legs. I did some more flight testing. It flew well, I did 13 takeoffs and landings on one battery pack, testing the handling for landing more smoothly.

 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#7
Finally began to work on an improved Ascent Stage. Using 1/48 scale cardboard model patterns, scaled up 300% (to 1/16 scale). First I put together one of the 1/48 set of patterns for the Ascent stage, to get a feel for how it went together and see where I could add some some mode stiff structure inside of it. In this photo, I laid the 1/48 Ascent Stage on top of the GPS/Compass module, and in the background is one of the printed sheets at 1/16 scale.


By Dec 11th, I gave the model a partial facelift. I built the front cabin and aft compartment. I temporarily attached them to the crude Ascent Stage it had bene flying with. This made it look a lot better.


I wanted to upgrade the looks in time to commemorate the landing of Apollo 17, on December 11th, 1972 (last Apollo lunar landing). It had snowed, and was still snowing, but I flew it anyway. Here’s a video I made.

After that, I did another upgrade, made a pattern for the landing pads, the “feet” that actually touched the moon’s surface. Up till then I had bene using 1/32” plywood. Again I made a 2-piece RTV mold and cast Alumilite resin. I added some pieces of fiberglass cloth to make the pads stronger. In the [photo at left below, that is the mold with excess resin squeezed out. The angled red thing is a 1/4” rod coated with mold release, to cast the hole for the 1/4” dowel legs to fit into. In the photo at right below, a raw casting with flashing on the left, and a trimmed pad in place on a leg at right.
 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#8
And then…. nothing for a few months. On Dec 23rd, I fell hard on ice and broke my left arm near the shoulder. I was able to work on some model stuff about a month later, but just could not get myself in gear to work on this model for some time later. However, some of the time was spent on thinking and planning. I had realized that the aluminized mylar I would add to the model might interfere with signal reception. So I ended up using a Spektrum AR-9020 receiver, which could accept three satellite receivers. And those satellite receivers were SPM4648 “quad racing” diversity receivers, which have long antenna leads. So, I placed those satellites inside the Descent Stage in a manner to ensure that at least one (usually two or three) of the 7 antennas would be able to “see” the transmitter signal. The Descent stage would have black vinyl in some places, no problem with reception thru vinyl & balsa, so most of the antennas are behind where the black vinyl was added. But the bottom of the LM has mylar all over it. So for that, I drilled a couple of small holes to allow to antennas to stick out, at different angles. So I think it’s well accounted for signal reception.

Also, it has RTL/RTH mode in it, so if it lost TX signal, the fail-safe would cause Arducopter to fly the model back to where it took off from.

And, this is not a model to be flown miles way, It has no camera, because…. why should it? It’s a scale model to be seen by people, not a camera platform. It is intended to be flown no more than a few hundred feet away horizontally. So it’s not going push things when it comes to radio signal range.

By end of March 2017, I had resumed flying the LM. And early April I finally built the new Ascent Stage. I used foamboard to create a support structure for the various printed cardboard pieces to be attached to. I used 3M77 spray adhesive to bond pre-printed cardboard to that support structure. In the image below, the parts on the left and right have already been assembled, were later attached to the support structure.


On April 3rd, I had the new Ascent Stage in place, and flew it in public for the first time. It was during a model rocket club launch.


And by chance, had the opportunity to take this photo:
 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#9
Phase 2 was over. Time for Phase 3, to start to make it look more real.

By April 7th, I removed all the legs, set aside the Ascent Stage, and retired the base plate/heat shield assembly.

Here, it’s bare wood, ready to cover.


And here is it some time later, with black vinyl, various kinds of mylar, foils, and markings.


Improved the leg struts.


Assembled a base heat shield, partly balsa structure, plus cardboard patterns, and a better nozzle.


Then covered the heat shield with different types of mylar, added the engine, and internally added a latch system to allow easy removal of the heat shield and put it back (as a hatch for accessing the inside of the Descent Stage). Also visible here are two satellite antennas sticking out.


One of the motors had acted up, sometimes not starting up when the other 3 did, or hesitating. I replaced that motor, and did a test flight to be sure the model flew OK., By this point I did not want ot risk damage to the new Ascent Stage, so I flew it without it. And indeed with this model the Ascent Stage is there for looks, no real functions. Although I do have three LED’s in it, a red one on left (motor arm indicator), a green one on right (GPS lock), and a flashing white LED in front (Strobe beacon). The real LM actually did have colored lights, for rendezvous, so I put those in the correct scale locations. The new motor passed the test.


And added more details. At left is “the porch”, where the astronauts were when they climbed out of the hatch and then moved onto the the ladder. I made that myself. The ladder and 16 RCS thrusters were 3D printed by Shapeways, from files by Vincent Meens (incredible static modeler, who builds the most accurate scale Lunar Modules in the world)


So, by April 18th, 2017, it looked like this:


And in the air:


Here is a good video of it flying. On that day, the compass was mot working well enough to do GPS. And there was a steady wind. I had to video by myself and my head-mounted GoPro was acting up. So I recorded using my Canon S5is camera in video mode, attached to a neck strap. I had the camera draped across my chest, and pointed my chest at it, sometimes. Other times, I let go of the transmitter (also on a neckstrap) and hand held the camera to get better views, and zoom in. But every time I handheld the camera, the model drifted with the wind. And on occasion…. BOTH (camera in one hand, other hand on one stick). So that is why the model drifts at times and why the camera work is inconsistent. But this turned out to be a very nice video, mid-way thru, on how the model handles, with some good close-up footage. Also, being a bit overcast and late in the day, the LED in the descent engine is quite visible (it simulates the rocket engine firing. And as it turns out, in the vacuum of space, there is no exhaust flame anyway, just intense light. I know, artwork shows flame, but not accurate)

 

GeorgeG

Junior Member
#10
And here’s me posing with it, when the moon and sun and weather finally allowed.



I made a soundtrack to play when flying it. Some music, and then the actual Mission Controller’s loop from the Apollo-11 landing. This video is my first practice session. The landing timing is not so good on try #1, better on the second one.


And I flew it on July 20th, 2017. 48th anniversary Apollo-11, Eagle’s landing on the moon. This video, my iphone overheated in the sun so the soundtrack cut out before landing.


Unfortunately, a few weeks later it was hovering at about 20 feet when a prop nut came loose, and the model tumbled to the ground. Broke all the legs but the rest is mostly OK (need a new ladder). I took a new job around then and didn’t have a pressing reason to fly it in 2018. But I am going to fix it soon and resume flying, as this year is the 50th anniversary of Apollo-11. I plan to do some more public flying with it. I know I’ll be flying it SOMEWHERE on July 20th this year.

I’ll also be adding some details the model has not had added yet. Mostly some antennas, particularly the Radar antenna and UHF antenna. Will also replace the conical paper nozzle with a plastic one of the proper curved shape like the real one (vac-formed, or maybe 3D printed by a friend)

Some additional notes. When flying with 3000 mAh 3S LiPos, the flight time is at least 8 minutes plus a safety margin. I later got a couple of 5000 mAh LiPos. With one of those, the flight time is 12 minutes plus a safety margin (I do have a voltage alarm onboard). The mass with a 5000 mAh pack is about 1600 grams or about 3.6 pounds.

A lot of the info in this thread is taken from my Build Thread on The Rocketry Forum. I left out a few things, as well as more pics and several more videos. So, some might want to check out the original thread there, at:

https://www.rocketryforum.com/threads/flying-r-c-lunar-module-quadcopter-project.137174/

There is now a second known Lunar Module Quadcopter. Bill Marvin built a LM Quadcopter by last summer. He did it more from the approach of using an existing 450 size Quadcopter and building a Lunar Module body/structure to enclose most of it except for the arms. Interestingly his seems to be about the same scale (1/16), he based his on scaling up the Metal Earth Lunar Module. Here's his video:

I hope there are others who will be building Lunar Module Quadcopters this year. Too bad that apparently no commercial company is likely to come out with one this year for the 50th anniversary. They would not have to pay NASA any royalties, unlike the Star Wars commercially made models.

A photo from when I flew the model on July 20th, 2017, the 48th anniversary of the first lunar landing.

 

PsyBorg

Wake up! Time to fly!
Mentor
#12
Wow mate. Thats some seriously detailed process of this project. Should get this into the article section.

Great project and story mate.
 

makattack

Winter is coming
Moderator
Mentor
#15
Very nice! I'm impressed that you were able to get altitude hold working well on your APM! I have a mini APM on a mini tricopter that may have a bad barometer, or too much noise, because it acts like a yo-yo everytime I put it in alt-hold mode. Love your scale modeling applied to a multirotor!
 

kilroy07

Well-known member
#17
Until you launch the ascent stage (from the lander) with a rocket motor I won't be impressed... :rolleyes:


I'm KIDDING! This is like next level awesome!! (y)(y)
(But you know... Version 4 "could" have a rocket motor... just saying!) :LOL: