Basic TP3

By Ewiley on Apr 04, 2021

5  92  0

tl;dr:
GOOD: very fast, long flight times on 4S, cheap to maintain w/replacable arms (comes with an extra!), sub-200g, plethora of whoop boards to fit
BAD: delicate arms and standoffs in the frame, fiddly to get setup right, not all 11xx motors will fit, limited battery mouting options

Toothpick 3 (TP3) by FPV Cycle seems like almost the perfect lightweight frame: there's nothing unnecessary and everything is fit for purpose if all you're doing is carrying a small camera and zipping around obstacles. There are a few drawbacks: the holes under the motors are very small, so certain motor C-clips will rub (e.g. the Xing x120x motors). The arms are extremely thin and will eventually wear away the glue between the layers of carbon resulting in extreme flex. Though now FPV Cycle have additional spars that go between the arms to decrease this flex and lock them in place. Finally the rubberband battery strap situation is...not optimal. though using some hair ties to secure the sides of the battery helps too.

This is actually a re-build of a previous toothpick frame that'd been damaged. I took it apart, cleaned it up and re-built it. This little guy is my absolute workhorse of race practice.

The JHEMCU ghf411aio is a no-nonsence whoop board with plenty of power for a small package. the Pro version is even better from what Ive heard. I dont need any extra UART for a little race beater and its easy to setup and tune, even supports the blheli s rpm filter firmware.

The Xing 1104e 4200kv motors are from the iFlight TurboBee, and are some of the most reliable quad motors I've worked with. The combo of light weight, low-ish KV motors make it a blast on 4S (350/450mah) with super long flight times. I've been playing around with 2 and 3-blade 3" props, something with a low pitch typically works best. Using thick shrink tubing adds a little weight but protect the wires completely.

I forget where i got the pickle canopy, probably on eBay, but it's also just what's needed, no more. The Foxeer lollipop vtx antenna is just OK, but it's what I had around and with a little hot glue, stays where it should. It pairs nicely with the BetaFPV A02 VTX, again, just does what it needs to, no more no less.

The only change I've made since this build is to move the antennas from the top to hanging off the legs with zipties and heat-shrink. This turned out to be more survivable in crashes than the tubing hot glued to the canopy. 77g dry and 126g with a 450 4S battery. extermely sharp with the TP3 tune on fpvcycle's website https://fpvcycle.com/blogs/build-guides-and-discussion/toothpick-3

Protip: use m2 washers on the main screws below the frame so you can tighten them down and still screw them into canopy from the bottom.

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