X-UAV for School


New member
I am looking to get this fixed wing for our school cadet force. They will be learning on simpler systems but we'd love to get one of the below. Could anyone help with directing us to everything we'd need to get this flying with the end aim of using it as a sort of surveillance drone. We're in the UK.


An X-UAV Talon.

Thanks in advance!

P.S- Potentially looking to have some autonomous features on to make flying easier etc. not sure if this is possible.


Legendary member
I'm in the process of getting iNav up on its smaller sibling, the mini-talon.
I've recently maidened the plane with manual control and when the weather permits will be bringing the autonomous features bit by bit.
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Elite member
Firstly you need to be registered and pass an online test to fly that in the UK. Under 16’s cannot fly without direct supervision from a registered and tested adult. Ypu also cannot fly within 5km of ANY airport, you must be 30m away from any dwellings and cannot fly over any built up area.
Stupid laws but that’s where we are now.
You will need to buy the Plug N Play version of that, the one you have listed is literally just a shell, it has no electronics included. You will also need a transmitter, receiver and camera as well as a flight controller. You may want FPV goggles as well.
If you are prepared to register and get a test my advice is to buy a second hand DJI Phantom 3 or similar camera gimbal photo drone, it will do everything you want, come with controller, spare batteries, charger etc and will be much easier to fly. You will spend around £500 getting a Talon to fly with GPS etc if you buy from scratch, more if you want a better camera and you will need to learn how to fly and land it by line of sight. The DJI will do all that for you.
If you still want to build your own, Painless 360 has a lot of stuff on Youtube with iNav. Here’s a basic build similar to the one you listed.

Here is the introduction to iNav.

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Well-known member
We currently fly a couple X-UAV Talons here at the U of MN UAV lab. We use ours for aerial survey work (primarily focused on a couple specific invasive weeds and invasive insects.) I am happy to share any specifics or answer any questions about our setups. Feel free to contact me here or off line. We have our own in-house developed autopilot we fly with, but if you don't want to become an avionics expert first, I would recommend putting in a pixhawk for autonomous work.

We built up ours in our lab. We picked an e-flite 25e for our motor, castle creations 50amp esc, 12x5 folding prop, 8000 mah 4-cell battery. Note: we bent the shafts on two motors catching the prop in grass on landing before switching over to a folding prop. We can easily get 60+ minute flights. Our longest flight is 77 minutes carrying a sony a6000 camera (~1 lb). We have collected 2400+ (24 megapixel) pictures on a single flight. I say this just to convey how capable this airframe is. The talon is a classic, but for our purposes I haven't found anything I liked better. It is a really nice work horse, I can hand launch it, belly it in anywhere, simple layout, etc. It also has a *lot* of space for payload, avionics, and battery, and quite a bit of flexibility for moving these things around to achieve the desired CG. It flies really nice and is quite efficient.

We do autolaunch, survey grids, and autonomous landings with ours. I've probably posted this here before, but here is a dusk autolanding with our Talon:

And here is the same landing from the onboard camera: