Tricopter flipping, will not fly (HELP!)


Junior Member

I am new to this forum but have watched flight test for a very long time and love it. This is my first post so go easy on me! I have recently built David's tricopter design, and have had some issues flying it.

I can arm the copter fine, however, when I give it a throttle to try to get it up, it flips to one side or the other.

I have all of the ESCs calibrated properly, and I am using the settings recommended on David's build video for the KK2 board. My transmitter is also tuned in and the check receiver test on the KK2 shows all channels are matched appropriately and going from 0-100.

This is a video of someones copter that is experiencing the same issues. (Not my copter).

Help would be greatly appreciated!
Thank you guys! :D


Hostage Taker of Quads
Staff member
Hmmm . . . Fresh meat . . . what do we do to Fresh meat?!?

We welcome them. Seriously, you've wandered onto one of the friendliest corners of the web :)

Haven't watched the vid (can't watch it from here), but if there's a "just like this" video, you're probably fighting "insta-flip". Effectively it's the control board trying to put the correction into the wrong place. A handful of things might be causing this, but generally it's either:

- the wrong motor layout is picked
- the wrong motor is connected to the wrong port
- a motor is spinning the wrong direction (or blowing up not down)
- the board is mounted the wrong direction (sensors are pointed the wrong way).

If you've gone through a setup vid, the first is probably fine. the remaining three are easy to check:

- front left ->1
- front right ->2
- rear -> 3
- servo ->4

- direction isn't critical as long as all of them are blowing down

- buttons should be closest to the tail.

double check those and if that's all good, we'll likely need a few pictures of *your* setup to help further.

Oh, and Welcome to the forum :)


Junior Member
Hi Crafty Dan,

Thank you so much for your response! :)

The motor layout was selected for a tricopter, so don't think that is the issue. However, the motor layout it recommends has the front right and the back prop rotating the "normal" direction, and the front right prop counter rotating. I only bought the normal props though, so I put those on all three arms. The motors are rotating so that they all blow the correct direction though. Do I need the counter rotating props too, or is it OK as long as they all blow down?

The board is pointing the right direction (arrow to the front, buttons towards tail), so that shouldn't be a problem.

I did the ACC calibration on flat ground, and all the values were vary close.

Wait! :D I think I may have found the problem, but I don't know how to fix it...

When I power it on a give it a little throttle and tilt it around
1. Tail motor revs up when I push the tail down (which is good)
2. BUT, when I tilt it right or left, the motor on the arm tilted up revs up! AH HAH!

Do you know how to fix this? :p

Thank you!


Junior Member

Yep, that was the fix! Switched the left and right ESCs and it flies very well.

Thank you Razor and CraftyDan for your help!


Church Meal Expert
Check all of these -
  • Motors all spinning the right direction
  • The props are the correct clock-wisedness for your motors.
  • Props all have the writing side up
  • The tricopter perfectly mirrors the 3D model in CleanFlight when you move it
  • The Servo reacts correctly to yaw motion
  • Your Flight Controller Board is Oriented correctly (or compensated for in Cleanflight)
Are you using David's version of Cleanflight?
If yes, are you using the Stand-alone version?
This firmware has some quirks. I had my Naze board orientented correctly, but had to add 180 degrees to the pitch to keep mine from flipping (roll). Something basic is wrong. The Naze is trying to correct, but the effect is in the wrong direction.
Go over everything - don't assume anything is correct.

Best regards,


Hostage Taker of Quads
Staff member
Glad we could point you in the right direction.

Post a pic of your creation, when you get a chance, and don't be a stranger :)