It’s been a while since I’ve done anything with my “Drones” or rather my multi-rotors. I got pretty darn frustrated with the APM line of flight controllers as well as the PixHawk so I put it all down for a while and am slowly getting back in.
A few months ago I stumbled across a Tri-Copter frame with a Naze32 built in. The two things I’ve liked most about this hobby, the Naze flight controller, and a tri-copter.
So dumped a TBS Discovery frame with DJI Flight controller on ebay and ordered one up.
It took almost a week to get here from Sweden and I assembled it today with left over parts I had had laying around. 16A ESCs (probably too small), and 3 of my eMax 2213 935kv 2212 Motors.
Ideally, you can run all the cords inside the carbon fiber arms, but I had trouble getting stuff to fit, these carbon fiber arms are literally 1/2 as thick as the wood arms of my simple copter. I also was at a loss for longer cables for the controller so I ran everything outside for now. I’ll address that when I get new ESCs.
So basically, no, it’s not as clean as I’d like.
$137 for the tricopter-v3-kit, with Power Distribution board and Naze32 board is a pretty good deal. I ended up buying some spare arms and a few other bits because I know I’m going to crash, including the server that David sells and recommends.
I already had: 3x Motors, 3x ESC’s, 3x Props, and a Spektrum Receiver, as well as the bits to make the power cord for the battery.
All in all it took about 4 hours from start to finish. A bit longer because I did a lot of stuff twice trying to figure out how to extend things and what not.
David, the guy at RCExplorer who put this together has a couple GREAT Videos to walk you through the assembly. Admittedly, setting up Naze isn’t easy for a noob. But David makes it almost bullet proof to get off the ground. I flew it for about 3 batteries today tuning it, and it flies GREAT. Can’t wait to strap the GoPro to it and add some lights for orientation.
There is a purpose built firmware for this board, and an optimized version for tri-copters in general on a standard naze32 using cleanflight (instead of baseflight) and David gets you started with all the right settings. His walkthrough video is very, very thorough.
Updated with some video of the first 2 camera enabled flights.