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More Power!

genious

Junior Member
#1
Hi all,

Just putting the finishing touches to my 3rd scratch-built tricopter. This one is designed to be an FPV platform. Haven't got any pictures but it's built from 10mm square aluminium bar with aluminium plates (rather than the fibreglass in the "traditional" design). All the electronics and my beloved GoPro are housed in a plastic "project box" on top.

The idea is to make this as crash-proof as possible. I want to protect the camera and FPV gear as well as minimising the damage I do when I crash so I can fly for longer. I'm new to FPV and hardly an expert pilot line-of-sight so crashes are a fact of life.

Anyway, the issue is that the all-up weight, including battery, is 1.3kg. This is over double the weight of the RC Explorer tricopter. In high winds the DT750's really start to struggle.

So, what do people recommend? Assuming the weight can't go down much more.

Do I try different motors? Is there a more powerful motor that will work with my 18A plush speed controllers?

Do I extend the arms and add another three motors? Thought about going for the usual "one-up-one-down" Y6 configuration, but I think the bottom props would be too vulnerable!

Which is better: six motors at 30% throttle or three motors at 60% throttle when hovering?

Anyone been through this themselves? How have other made tricopters "bomb-proof"?

Dan
 

genious

Junior Member
#2
PS: Here's a video of me flying around on the beach last week trying to get the hang of figure 8's etc. This is shot from my first triciopter which is also aluminium and weighs about 1.1kg with the GoPro and housing stuck on top.


This should explain why I'm so keen on my tricopter frame being tough!
 

colorex

Rotor Riot!
Mentor
#3
You could consider using 11x4.7 props - assuming you're running 10x4.7 - to get more thrust. You could of course try adding more motors, but it would be an investment of around $60. The DT750's are a real cheap alternative. Bigger motors start getting more expensive.

I once had a thought of adding a fourth motor to the center of the tricopter, mounted far enough up not to lose efficiency from the center plates. You could just use a switch for this motor, as it doesn't need stabilization, it would give you an extra Kg of thrust.

Something you should consider is to switch to a quad - the part most prone to breaking on a tricopter is the yaw mechanism - which a quad doesn't have. A quad also has an extra motor, and they also have smaller arms (average quad on YouTube has 20 cm shorter booms than tri's) which means less tubing - less weight.

Hope this helps.
 

genious

Junior Member
#4
Will give some 11inch props a try - they seemed a bit "odd" last time I tried them on the old tricopter - but might work better on something heavier. I am running 10inch ones now.

I'd also thought of adding 1/2 extra "lift only" motors to a multi-rotor design - one in the middle or two on "side-pods" close to the CG. I'd thought of splitting the throttle channel prior to the KK board to control them.

As for the quad thing - that's probably the root of it. I love flying the tricopter - it feels very acrobatic and fast. Quads seem to be more controlled and "sensible", with slower yaw response but more stable hovering etc. The truth of the matter (probably) is that a quad makes a better FPV platform for exactly those reasons. An extra kg of thrust plus added stability is exactly what I want!