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Asked — Edited

Ez-Quadcopter, What Hardware?

Hi Guys,
(Note: the following is quite summed up cause I had a long message typed out explaining in detail, but I unfortunately hit a wrong button and deleted it...)

I want to build a quadcopter powered by an ez-b. But, from previous questions, I know I need more. So, I need your help. What Hardware do I need?

1.Flight control board: must be able to fly the quad when ez-b is absent

2.Motors: The motors must have high torque(lots of power for lifting), but also be conservative of battery power, for long flight times.

3.Esc's: Must be compatible with the flight control board

4. Propellers: I am looking for ideas on a 4 bladed propeller that works well, as I want to make the quad a shape shifter and turn into a car. So the blades will act as spokes.

Some notes: Max quad weight is 10 pounds(the very max) with a payload of (max) 75% of its own weight. I will post designs of what I'm thinking of later.

As for anyone who helps, you name will be put on the quad as a thank you.

Appreciate the help anyone gives me.

If someone could list there own setups, that will help too.

Thanks,
Tech

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Synthiam
#1  
I can put together a list of everything needed , basically if you get a "arduino capable" flight controller and gyroscope board then the ezb can throw it commands and of course use the V4 integrated camera as well.

Ps. My friends call me Scroaty McBoogerballs, that would be a great quad copter name;)
#2  
Scroaty McBoogerballs? Hmmm, they don't sound like your friends at all...:P
#3  
Agreed. On Richards comment. Don't think I would name a quad copter Boogerballs, unless of course it was Halloween.;)

Great Josh! Thanks a bunch! I tried the multiwii a while ago but couldn't figure out the communication, remember? That was an arduino compatible too, but alas it was too difficult to figure out. I didn't buy it of course.
P.S. You might need to look up the definition of "friends" in the dictionary.;)
#4  
Here's a breif diagram of the concept(in drive mode).

Here's the frog. How I do this in the code, I don't know. Just an idea for now.

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#5  
Scrotie McBoogerballs...

isn't that from south park? that would be the perfect name;)
#6  
But here's the problem with that one Anthony. It doesn't "transform" as some people state. To transform something would have to change.
Also, if a kid gets control, even though it says they're safe, those blades are more likely toast. My design can take the brunt of that, or will.
Further more, it can't lift anything.
And, most important, It isn't customizable! This you could add arms! And any other ARC/ez-robot component to be exact.

(Note: This may have sounded harsh. I meant it to be informative, not attacking.)
#7  
@anthony

the omnibot has been done, but you're making your own, aren't you? How is techno's project any different?;)

also @Technopro you may want to disconnect the tire from the propeller, I'm not exactly sure it would be best to put a load on a light and thin plastic propeller. Then again, I've never really made a transforming quadcopter so I would never know:P
#8  
@Sudo, I was planning to make the propeller blades thicker and stronger to withstand that force. How? Well, I'm not sure yet.

If I find that it will be more trouble, I might go for a pot design.
(NOTE: Yes there are some kinks with the drawn design.)
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Netherlands
#9  
@Technopro
There are a lot of ready made solutions for flightcontrollers. I've used a few
for my own Tricopter:
-KK2 Flight controller
You could control it with PWM like servo's. When you connect it with an EZ-b.
(Haven't tried it yet though, but it should work) It should work for basic flying.

- Ardupilot mega 2.6: This one is based of
the arduino platform. It's opensource and it has a lot of features, including GPS, compass, realtime telemetry, RTL, etc. I linked the manual, because there are a few
ways you could controll it, either through PWM or PPM, but also through it's telemetry port. You can connect a wireless transmitter to that port and control the APM via a pc. You could use this same port (think it was UART) to control it with an EZ-b.

- Naze32, heard great things about it and I'm planning to use it in my future 250 racing quad.

As for the ESC's, pretty much every RC ESC should fit, probably JR or Futaba style plug.

For the motors and your specs, you'll need some serious power. IMHO 17.5 pounds is a lot of weight, so you will probably need motors like:
-NTM Prop Drive 50-50 580KV / 2000W, with a 14x8 prop on a 4s battery.
It would need a 100A (+20%) ESC on max settings, for current settings you'd need
40A (+20%) ESC.
-NTM Prop Drive Series 42-38 750kv / 785w with a 14x6 prop on a 4s battery.
It would need a 60A ESC (+20%).

Why the +20%, you always want to stick with the 80/20 rule, never go over 80% load.
So your electronics live longer, same rule with LiPo's, never drain over 80%.

As for these motors, I'm not saying you should get these, but should look at motors like these that provide enough power. Also take in mind, if you are going
to use your wheels with propellors as spokes and tilt them upwards to transform.
That your wheel/prop will have "a lot" of mass that you need to accelerate in
order to take off. The inertia of the wheel/prop affects the speed of acceleration,
the more inertia the lower the speed of acceleration and thus lower speed of response.
Your flight controller will rappidly alter the speed of each motor to stay stable in
the air, if the motors dont react fast enough it will make the quad unstable.
For example, a gust of wind comes along and pushes it from the side:
If fast enough your quad will drift away not even losing alitude, if not it will tilt
side ways and drift really fast and might crash in to the ground while the motors
are accelerating to compensate for the change of angle.

The solution would be bigger motors that have more power or really lightweight
propwheels which accelerate faster and then you wont have that issue. It's also
good to have some extra power for general flying, fast throttle response is always
nice.

You might also want to look in to what happens if you use these motors at low RPM,
for your ground mode. I'm not sure how the would behave. They're usually made
to run at 5000-20000 RPM and would have a higher effeciency at higher rpms.
All the negative effeciency would turn in to heat. It would have tons and tons of
torque so the driving part wont be an issue :D. You might even be able to flip it
on the spot :P.

I hope I helped a bit with a few factors, I've had my share of crashes and fly aways.
(it once took off out of nowhere and crashed 1.5km from where I was flying...
The RTL (Return to launch) kicked in because I lost radiocontrol but the GPS and
compass where giving off false readings due to magnetic interferrence from
powerleads to my ESCs, it's fixed now, but I had to crash before I found out that it
was a problem...)
#10  
Thanks for the tips @budel.

I'm starting to think that my multipurpose wheel-propeller might not work. Though, that's what planning is for.

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#12  
Now here's my issue.
I have a limited budget($250 is a happy max), and so I need budget, but efficient parts.
Also, I'm a newb when it comes to building a quad, so ease of use would be simpler.

Hardware:
Low amperage but high specs(motor, esc)
Ease of use


Thanks to all who have provided help so far. It's a challenge but I'm sure we can do it.
Netherlands
#14  
@Technopro
The arming sequence on the KK2.0 is really simple, when you use it with an RC transmitter,
you have to hold the throttle stick to the bottom right corner for 5 seconds,
meaning that if you give the yaw to the right signal for 5 seconds you could arm it.
After that its ready to fly. It's a very useful safety feature that prevents your
aircraft from taking of without you telling it to. Almost all rc flight controllers
have this function. Usually after you've armed a flight controller, if you don't
send it signals they would disarm themselves. Because you are either
not using it or it flew up a tree and a continued use would damage the aircraft.

As for the setup, it's necessary for your flight controller to know when it's level and
for it to know what it's controlling(e.g. tricopter, quad, hex,octa, etc.). Also the PIDs
have to be setup. These are reference values that determine the flight controller's
reactions, like stabilizing. For instance, the P value is responsible for large reactions,
the I value for subtle reactions. If they're not setup correctly then your multicopter
will be unstable.

Each flight controller has their own way of setting them up, for instance the KK2.0
needs to be set on a level surface and be untouched for 10 seconds after that it
knows the values for a level position with the onboard sensors. And manually
pick the PID values. But you also have to calibrate the ESCs that they all work and
respond the same way as each is slightly different even though same brand,
same type/model.

But the AMP 2.6 on the other hand is slightly different, for it's PID settings you have
to fly it and use a tuning knob on your transmitter to set up the value's. You have
to slowly turn the knob until it's completely stable in the air. Then connect it to the
pc and copy these values to the settings.

But basically every flight controller will require some form of setup, long or short,
that depends on the controller.

There are a quite few instruction video's on Youtube where people build their multicopters
and give a lot of information. From setting up flight controllers to picking motors
,ESCs, how to handle LiPo batteries and designing your own airframes.
The channel I really recommend is FliteTest, they're really informative on rc
aircraft, but there are others out there that are good aswell. (they convinced
me to get in to RC flying again).

So in short, there's a reason why it needs to be setup and armed. And you might
want to do some more research. To get more informed yourself.
Things you should look for:
- Airframes, how are they designed, why like that, etc (so you can make your own).
- Flight controllers, how they are setup, advantages and how you could use
them to achieve your goal.
- Motors/ESCs, power needed and which ones(there are tones and tones of them).
- LiPo batteries, size and charger (for the weight of the aircraft and desired
transport capability you will need a big one or even a few).

When I decided I wanted to make a Tricopter, I did about 6 weeks of research
to find out what I would need and how everything would work together.
After that I took another 2 weeks to pick all the parts I needed and ordered them.
When I received all the parts it took me only 3 hours to assemble it and took
my maiden flight 45 minutes later.

In case I made a wrong impression, I'm not telling you I'm not going to help you
anymore. Just that you need to do some research so you get all the information
you need and learn from it for future projects. Because I don't exactly know your
plan is except for the things you say here, that I might misunderstand >.<
#15  
No misunderstanding. I get it.

I'm not sure if quads are for me yet, but I'll at least make a plan.

Controller:kk2-Basic EZ-Script for throttle setting + source of info?

Motors:www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__19831__NTM_Prop_Drive_Series_42_38_750kv_785w.html
with setup: 13x10 prop - 14.8v - 740W - 50A - 2.8kg(need a prop and motor mount kit(cheap))

Propeller: I'm thinking this one?www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__16052__Master_Airscrew_S_2_Scimitar_propeller_13x10.html
Yes or no?

ESC's: Will these work? www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__30843__Hobby_King_60A_ESC_4A_UBEC_USA_warehouse_.html

Mostly looking for compatibility. Not sure what to look for. Cheaper the better.

Thanks,
Tech:D
#16  
I took at step back and thought about it, And I'm thinking buying a prebuilt quadcopter that is modifiable for the Ez-b would be an easier option.

I've made some sacrifices and I think that if the quad can lift at least a pound, I'll be ok.

I was looking at the Quanum Nova(Link to quanum nova), and it appears to run a arducopter board, which was listed as controllable via ez-b in an earlier post.
Though, I unfortunatly don't know its payload limits. It can lift a go pro and gimble(around 500 grams) perfectly, but no limits posted it appears.

If anyone has seen other ready to fly quads that are hack-able let me know.

Thanks a lot guys!
Tech