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Yes!! another tricopter!

crlock

Senior Member
#1
Hi everyone, i've been away from the hobby for a while. Now however, i have some time in my hands, so i started another tricopter build.
This one is a 240 size Tricopter.
i'm using the base from a 240 quad that i wrecked some time ago. i did a little dremeling here and there, and came up with a decent frame for this little monstrosity. here's a pic
MK-T06.jpg

As you can see, there is some pretty old hardware there. It's reliable hardware though. In fact the KK is the only board with which i could achieve a stable tricopter flight. the Naze did a decent job for a while, but the newest firmwares sucked at tricopters. So i thought. meh, i have at least 3 good motors from that wrecked quad, let's put together a tri. Here is the list

kk 2.1.5
little bee 20A opto esc 2-4s
cobra 2300kv motors
6x4.5 props
minima ppm receiver
fatshark 250mw
700tvl camera -Yet to be found-
BEC 5v
With battery i'm aiming at around 700 grams.
I'm thinking for a battery i should go with something under 2000mah. What do you guys think, how much autonomy a 1500mah battery would yield?
The idea behind this build is to use, only hardware that i have lying around. So far i haven't spend a single dollar on it =D.
Next step Electronics installation.
i'll try to keep updates coming

cheers!
 

ElectriSean

Eternal Student
Mentor
#2
For the sake of your ESC's, try to keep it light, I'd stay away from anything over 1500mAh. Even then, that motor/prop combo will probably pull 30A easy.
 

LitterBug

Troll Spammer
#3
If you want any spare KK boards, I have 2 to send your way. I have been helping test TriFlight for several years and these came along with a tri I updated to all new gear.

I'm a Tri Madman with about 7 of various sizes.

Cheers!
LitterBug
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#4
Hi everyone, i've been away from the hobby for a while. Now however, i have some time in my hands, so i started another tricopter build.
This one is a 240 size Tricopter.
i'm using the base from a 240 quad that i wrecked some time ago. i did a little dremeling here and there, and came up with a decent frame for this little monstrosity. here's a pic
View attachment 154751
As you can see, there is some pretty old hardware there. It's reliable hardware though. In fact the KK is the only board with which i could achieve a stable tricopter flight. the Naze did a decent job for a while, but the newest firmwares sucked at tricopters. So i thought. meh, i have at least 3 good motors from that wrecked quad, let's put together a tri. Here is the list

kk 2.1.5
little bee 20A opto esc 2-4s
cobra 2300kv motors
6x4.5 props
minima ppm receiver
fatshark 250mw
700tvl camera -Yet to be found-
BEC 5v
With battery i'm aiming at around 700 grams.
I'm thinking for a battery i should go with something under 2000mah. What do you guys think, how much autonomy a 1500mah battery would yield?
The idea behind this build is to use, only hardware that i have lying around. So far i haven't spend a single dollar on it =D.
Next step Electronics installation.
i'll try to keep updates coming

cheers!
That looks awesome. I am normally a fixed wing guy but I am looking at drones as of late. Question... Is there an advantage to a tri-copter over a quad?
 

ElectriSean

Eternal Student
Mentor
#5
That looks awesome. I am normally a fixed wing guy but I am looking at drones as of late. Question... Is there an advantage to a tri-copter over a quad?
Other than the cool factor, no. Just ask Litterbug, Tricopters are for madmen. If you want to get into multirotors, start with a quad. They are much simpler and more durable.
 

crlock

Senior Member
#7
Other than the cool factor, no. Just ask Litterbug, Tricopters are for madmen. If you want to get into multirotors, start with a quad. They are much simpler and more durable.
You stole my words!! yeah, no benefit other than they look damn cool in te air. Although i'd venture and say that tricopters, have a bit more of yaw authority over quads. I'm curious to see how this little monstrosity will handle. i have another tri, a 320 size and that's kinda slow and heavy, but rock steady. with this one, i'm aiming at a more agile machine.

As ElectricSean said, getting into multirotors, is way easier with quads. All the best frames are made for quads, all the software is tailored for quads, not to mention hardware, i haven't seen any ESC/PDB made for tricopters.

Uh, found the camera by the way!, so i'll throw FPV in there after all :D

cheers
 

crlock

Senior Member
#8
It flies! i just did a first test flight. A couple of glitches at first, but all mistakes on my part.
First glitch, a motor spinning the wrong way
Second, a loose prop, didn't fly off but made the copter behave almost unpredictable. didn't know it could cause that.
Third glitch, bad load balance on the copter, luckily the space onboard allows the battery to move forward or backwards if needed.

Once All that, got sorted out, this beautiful monstrosity flew quite nicely :D i love it. here is a pic

MK-T06-FlightrReady.jpg
 

crlock

Senior Member
#9
Hi everyone. My adventure with the kk2.1.5 tricopter is going very well. Except that, for some reason, I can't set the EPA for the servo.
I've allways done this with the radio setings, but for some reason I can't now. I fiddled with the EPA for the servo, and expo settings for my general control preferences, but nothing seems to take effect on the copter side. The expo settings though, disabled the ability to arm or disarm the copter (under 55% expo in the rudder channel, and the copter no longer arm or disarm) Maybe the Autolevel feature on the kk is messing with the radio settings? Expos and EPA worked fine on all my other builds.
Maybe it's been so long since my last build that I'm missing a step?

I have a Hitec aurora 9, this little copter is communicating via PPM and the bigger try, is doing it trough PWM, both are ignoring the radio settings, except for the rudder expo, that disables arming with a setting under 55%
 

crlock

Senior Member
#10
I was hesitant to put this massive, old 250 mw vtx, on the tricopter.


This thing has a huge cloverfield antena, that might, at some point, for some obscure weird reason, get in the way of the props. It smelled like trouble, so i ended up putting a pin on it. Until today.
Doing some cleaning, i found a tiny 200 mw vtx i bought a few years ago and, never used it for what i intended. But the universe, in all its wisdom, made it a perfect fit for this frame. It's tiny antena, is out of the way of any harm, and with 200mw of power, i have more than enough to play around. I'm powering it with a tiny 1S, separate from the Tricopter's power distribution circuit.

vtx-mk07.jpg

pay no atention to the exposed power connector :p
I made a tiny pouch, for the tiny battery, and a tiny base, for the tiny camera, and a tiny cover, for the tiny VTX. I love it, it's so tiny <3
I'd like to give a special thanks to Instamorph®, the poor man's, 3D printer! i love this stuff!