Thursday, November 6, 2014

Building Quadcopter Part 7 - &%$#*

Stuff goes wrong when you are building a model, at least it does for me.  Today, I connected up the receiver, controller, speed controls and interfaced to Mission Planner on my PC.  Mission Planner allows you to set up your quadcopter, calibrate sensors, and make flight plans.  My goal was just to do the set up and see how calibration works.

Two problems:

  1. The speed controls did not seem to inteface to the flight controller - they delivered no power.  Need to check this out.
  2. As I was calibrating the compass with the USB cable installed, the connector broke off the controller card (see photos above).  It looks like this is a common problem - the connector is definitely flimsy.  The calibration processs has you waving the quadcopter around with the cable attached and it put too much strain on the surface mount solder joints on the board and pop.  My attempts at repair using the original connector were unsuccessful.
Now I have to wait for a new connector and see if I can repair it, which does not look easy given the tiny dimensions of the connector.  I also ordered a backup controller in case I cannot repair the old one.  Lots of swearing and frustration and it will probably be at least a week before I am back up and running.

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