Armattan Tadpole - HD Edition

By Jayembee67 on Feb 22, 2020

11  348  4

Holy cow, another Armattan Tadpole? Really?? Yes, well, guilty as charged, what can I say? Everyone should make them, they're great.

Anyhow, I have been delighted by the Tadpole I very recently built (yeesh, this hobby and bank accounts...), but I have been constantly disappointed that such a fun little machine is relegated to goggle DVR for post hoc video. And that's no fun on the big screen TV, right kids?

So I wondered if it would be possible to squeeze on-board HD recording into a Tadpole, and after doing a bit of digging, realised that the fancy new Whoop boards that are showing up could be just the thing; Armattan make a Whoop board adapter plate for the Tadpole, so they obviously want you to engage in this sort of mad science. I ordered a new frame, a passel of parts and when they arrived, did a certain amount of Tetris-ing.

As such, it is with considerable pleasure that I present, fresh from it's maiden flight in the park this very evening, the Armattan Tadpole HD; 78g of 2.5" Acro flying fun, recording all those daring, but smallish-scale, aerial japes in silky 1080p@60fps. I thank you!

This is the maiden flight, well, 3rd pack, and it looks like this build is going to be just fine. In truth, I didn't really expect it to work very well, that I would have to build shims to raise the plate heights to get things to fit, but in the end, it all squeezed in. It is a bit messy, but it works. The hardware is supposedly 3S-4S capable, I'm running 3S here and it lacks a bit of punch, the ground does arrive somewhat faster than anticipated. Not terrible, but a bit alarming at first. So maybe I need to invest in 4S packs...?

But even still, out of the gate this is flying well. It's running stock 4.1.1, with a few tweaks for smaller frames, and seems to be behaving itself. It's quick, stable, agile, not quite as snappy as I would like, but I am getting 3 minutes from a 350mAh pack with those bigger motors, despite the extra weight.

Plus it's still teeny, tiny but is recording HD video like a grown up quad. I'm actually pretty chuffed with this one.



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ChristianProgrammer   10 days ago  

Nice detail work,. I Guess I will be de soldering my motors now thanks to you and adding shrink over the wires about the arms. Seriously nice deail work.
I always shrink my receiver and VTX as well like you did. A little scared of AIO boards though. but very nice job sir.

Jayembee67   10 days ago 

Thank you so much! I like to try to keep builds tidy, not that it's always possible. But it is worth the effort.

And yes, with 4S and 65mm bi-blades this is a really great machine. It's flying like a much larger rig, and of course that AIO is recording 1080p, so you really are getting a lot of machine in a very small package. And so far the AIO is holding up its end of the bargain just fine; both flight and video are all perfectly acceptable!

L0stB1t   Mar 01, 2020  

Quite impressive. How much does it weigh? Before trying 4S batteries I'd try a higher pitched prop though, like the Emax Avan Rush?

Jayembee67   Mar 02, 2020 

Thank you. It weighs 83g, which is a bit chunky for such a small machine, but given what it does, I'm ok with that. In the end, I did both. I put on Gemfan 2540 triblades, which were good but ate my battery, and so then put a 450mAh 4S battery on top (which looks a bit comically large in truth).

And it's a fine combo. 3-4m of solid acro flying, faster and with more snap, and the extra weight is actually a plus; it makes the handling feel a bit more like a full-sized quad, definitely easier to loose altitude. I am seeing more shake at high throttle, so some tuning is needed, but otherwise, I am pleased with where this now is.

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