Monday, November 24, 2014

Lessons from First Quadcopter Build

I learned a few things from building my first quadcopter drone.

  1. The USB port is very fragile, attach a permanent short extender cable to connect to your PC.  Otherwise, you will be buying a new controller.
  2. You need to take time to think as you assemble the drone.  There are lots of ways of attaching components and taking some time to think will yield a better result.  Spending time with the Mission Controller application will help you set up your drone, understand how it will work, and allow you to test some of the functions before flying.
  3. The best places to get pieces are online stores like Amazon and Hobbyking, Home Depot, and your local hobby shop.
  4. Nylon cable ties are a great way to attach things to the quadcopter frame.  Why use bolts when a simple tie will do?
  5. Learn how the controller works before flying.  There are some modes like "althold" that sound useful but should only be triggered after flying.
  6. Make a tethered test setup to test fly your quad.
  7. Use the Wiki, google, youtube, and manufacturers sites to find solutions to problems or helpful tutorials.
  8. Get a good soldering iron and learn to solder.

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