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Pumpkin drop event

No whoop for you! Low thrust on Inductrix FPV.

Duck

Active member
#1
I finally diagnosed my stock Inductrix FPV as one of the first batches that suffered from a manufacturing defect resulting in the LVC kicking in after only a few seconds. This developed after months of slowly decreasing flight times. I contacted Horizon and they quickly replaced the main board. Now that I've done that I am still not really able to fly it with the Camera & shell on for more then a few seconds. I have enough thrust to take off then it diminishes until I am back on the ground. I am trying to diagnose the issue and could use suggestions. Things basically went like this.

Last year
* Got Inductrix, super happy doing laps around the house.
* A cracked frame resulted in me replacing the frame and adding a very small carbon fiber frame stiffener < 1g. No change in flight times but tiny difference in thrust.
https://www.hobbytown.com/inductrix...uctrix-sqare-carbon-stiffener-lyx1965/p565242
* Flight times went from 3-5 minutes to 2 minutes.

9 months ago
* Inductrix took a quick dunk in water due to a poor flight plan. Rinsed with distilled water and 99%+ isopropyl and it appeared no worse for ware.
* Flight times reduced to 30s or less with some batteries. I replaced all my batteries with a mix of chemestries (normal, HV and graphine)/brands. The new batteries gave consistent flight times of 30 seconds but no better.
* Prop replacements had no effect and I checked for hairs wound around the motors.

6 months ago
* Flight times reduced to 0. Inductrix was usually unable to lift off and unable to sustain even ground effect flight.

Last month
* I removed the Camera & shell and was able to actually fly ~2 minutes without them. It flew great! It seemed to actually fly faster then when I got my inductrix but maybe I was just more liberal with the throttle.
* I discovered that the LVC issue was known with the 1630 series board. I contacted Horizon and got a replacement board. The Indutrix with Camera & shell will take off to a maximum height of about 2 feet with most batteries. It will then drop to about 3-6 inches and stay that way for 3-4 minutes before LVC.

Now, about a year passed between when I got my Inductrix and now and I probably went through 60 flights with ~10 batteries. It sounds like motors ware out eventually but it isn't clear if I am there or not. Would new motors be in order? Should I look for stock or upgrade to something more likely to overcome the 'ground funk'? I see FT carries a popular upgrade:
https://store.flitetest.com/tiny-whoop-special-sauce-edition-motors-set-of-4/

Would a motor upgrade be in order? Is it likely to fix anything? Honestly between the main board replacement and the motors there isn't a lot left that might impact performance besides weight and I know flying with my frame stiffener used to work fine.

Right now my history is about 40% flights of "This is awesome why doesn't everyone do this" and 60% flights of "Well, this is a waste of time and money and I shouldn't try to convince friends to try this". I need a more reliable way to turn multi-rotors fun indoors where I can spend < 200$ and fly when I can't get out with my fixed wings. I want to get some friends into the hobby but given the reliability of the experience I don't want to. If replacing these things every few months is mandatory I am struggling to justify it. Suggestions?
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#2
New motors are probably the best upgrade for where you're at right now. Brushed motors do not last as long as the brushless motors that larger quads tend to have.

TinyWhoop, FliteTest, and NewBeeDrone all acknowledge this with upgraded motors, and if your Inductrix took a dip in water, it's quite possible that the motors got damaged a bit.

There's also another possibility that it could be your battery connector not keeping a good connection. The JST-XH, aka micro JST plugs, aren't as sturdy as the larger JST PH 2.0 plugs, which allow for bigger batteries on your Inductrix.

So, good news/bad news - Bad news is that your motors and/or power connector probably are on the outs. Good news is that it can be replaced/upgraded for cheap.

NewBeeDrone has a pack of 3 sets of motors (12 motors total) of their Silver, Black, and Gold motors, each one a little more powerful than the others. That pack of motors is roughly $30, and are simple swaps from what you currently have. I'd start there, and if you still have issues, swap out the plug and some of your batteries for the newer style of plug - you'll see better flight, I think, with those two changes.

The motors shouldn't need constant changing, but conditions CAN cause them to have shorter lifespans. For example, mine are somewhat on their last legs, but that's because I fly in some dusty/dirty environments outdoors, and that gunk does not play nicely with my motors; that's not the manufacturer's fault, but rather, mine. Live, learn, and move on, in my case. :)
 

Duck

Active member
#3
I installed a set of Tiny Whoop Race Edition motors today and had roaring success. They have alot of power! With the new FC the LVC gives me 4-5 minutes of flight where only the last minute is dropping off where I can't keep myself up. I noticed that 1 battery I have does have slightly less power and removing the carbon fiber frame stiffener is enough to keep me in the air longer. It is either blocking airflow or just enough weight to make the difference. Overall worth the 20$ to extend the life of the little flying cockroach. The only problem with the new FC is that the battery lead sticks out over the back left prop and one mild crash resulted in the motor being dislodged and rubbing against the battery wire. The wire seems fine but the prop has a few scuffs.

Thanks sprzout@!
 
#4
New motors are probably the best upgrade for where you're at right now. Brushed motors do not last as long as the brushless motors that larger quads tend to have.

TinyWhoop, FliteTest, and NewBeeDrone all acknowledge this with upgraded motors, and if your Inductrix took a dip in water, it's quite possible that the motors got damaged a bit.

There's also another possibility that it could be your battery connector not keeping a good connection. The JST-XH, aka micro JST plugs, aren't as sturdy as the larger JST PH 2.0 plugs, which allow for bigger batteries on your Inductrix.

So, good news/bad news - Bad news is that your motors and/or power connector probably are on the outs. Good news is that it can be replaced/upgraded for cheap.

NewBeeDrone has a pack of 3 sets of motors (12 motors total) of their Silver, Black, and Gold motors, each one a little more powerful than the others. That pack of motors is roughly $30, and are simple swaps from what you currently have. I'd start there, and if you still have issues, swap out the plug and some of your batteries for the newer style of plug - you'll see better flight, I think, with those two changes.

The motors shouldn't need constant changing, but conditions CAN cause them to have shorter lifespans. For example, mine are somewhat on their last legs, but that's because I fly in some dusty/dirty environments outdoors, and that gunk does not play nicely with my motors; that's not the manufacturer's fault, but rather, mine. Live, learn, and move on, in my case. :)
Do you have any suggestions for a 1s lipo charger that can do more that one lipo at a time? For my Inductrox FPV b/c I only get around 3 mins of flight time per battery.
 

Duck

Active member
#10
I own the Hitec X4. It is great but has two disadvantages. It doesn't do HV and it doesn't have a storage mode. Other then that is is great. 4 ports is not quite enough for continuous flying but it will give you a pretty long flying session. I have eight or so good batteries so by the time I get to the last one, the next one is coming off the charger. That means that at around 12 flights I wind up waiting. At that point I am usually tired anyway :) If you wanted to risk the tiny batteries at something more then 1C you could do it but I've seen many recommendations to not do that.
 

Bricks

Well-known member
#13
My little !S batteries I do not worry about storage charge heck you can find them on Aliexpress for less then $2 each most of mine have lasted well over a year and then some with many having better then 100 flights on them.

As Sprzout has mentioned which I am going to do is change my Whoop over to the 2.0 connector one of the best improvements in how the whoop flies, from everything I have read. Many say the micro 1.25 connectors start wearing out with as little as 30 times of connecting and disconnecting the battery. So the connection starts to get high resistance which can make you think the battery is going bad with shorter flight times and slower throttle response..
 
#14
My little !S batteries I do not worry about storage charge heck you can find them on Aliexpress for less then $2 each most of mine have lasted well over a year and then some with many having better then 100 flights on them.

As Sprzout has mentioned which I am going to do is change my Whoop over to the 2.0 connector one of the best improvements in how the whoop flies, from everything I have read. Many say the micro 1.25 connectors start wearing out with as little as 30 times of connecting and disconnecting the battery. So the connection starts to get high resistance which can make you think the battery is going bad with shorter flight times and slower throttle response..
Does that require soldering
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#16
Does that require soldering
Changing out to the 2.0 PH DOES require soldering; you can either solder the board itself or do what I did and cut the wire short, strip it, twist and solder the connections together, and then shrink tube it. I did mine that way because I don't have a really tiny point on my soldering iron, and I wanted to make sure I got a good join.

Now, as for charging the batteries, there are two different boards I recommend:

Amazon has this one; I've bought 2 of them, one for me, and one for my dad; they charge both the older JST-XH and JST-PH 2.0 connectors on one board, and it'll do up to 6 batteries, HV, on it:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01ID6U4LC/?tag=lstir-20

This plugs into just about any standard charger; I use this with my HiTec RDX1 with no problems whatsoever. You just set it to 1S, set the battery level to 4.35 and mark the batteries as LiHV in the charger, and charge.

The other option, instead of using this board, is to go with the Newbeedrone version:

https://newbeedrone.com/collections/chargers/products/newbeedrone-double-sided-charging-board

I don't have this board, unfortunately, but the fact that I could connect it up to an XT60 charging port on my HiTec (or any other charger, for that matter) makes me think it's a better way to go.

I'll also admit that I'm partial to NewBeeDrone, but it's because they're San Diego based. If I order $50 or more, I can go pick it up from the offices for free. :)

Oh, and the 2.0 PH connector that you would need (and the one i would recommend, after using it via NewBeeDrone):

https://newbeedrone.com/collections.../products/nectar-connector-ph2-0-battery-lead

You can't put the battery on backwards; you'll end u breaking the connector on the battery before it'll go on wrong.
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#17
My little !S batteries I do not worry about storage charge heck you can find them on Aliexpress for less then $2 each most of mine have lasted well over a year and then some with many having better then 100 flights on them.

As Sprzout has mentioned which I am going to do is change my Whoop over to the 2.0 connector one of the best improvements in how the whoop flies, from everything I have read. Many say the micro 1.25 connectors start wearing out with as little as 30 times of connecting and disconnecting the battery. So the connection starts to get high resistance which can make you think the battery is going bad with shorter flight times and slower throttle response..
Yeah, I found that was a HUGE improvement in flight times and just in getting a good connection, even. The one downside is that I ended up having to replace the 1s batteries that I'd bought for the old connector style with the new 2.0 connector style, but I got bigger mAh batteries, and I think I paid like, $20 for 6 LiHV batteries via Amazon? They're relatively cheap batteries to replace, honestly...