#NanoLongRange with Ghost

By jeffcd on Apr 06, 2021

29  2,774  5

Here's my take on the Dave_C #NanoLongRange 1S 18650 quadcopter. Thanks to Dave for all the great work he's doing for this hobby!

I found this was actually a very interesting, but challenging build and I went through quite a few design iterations along the way and learned a lot.
Please drop a comment if you have any questions and I'll do my best to help.

Some lessons learned... I originally planned to use the ImmersionRC Tramp Nano VTX, but I blew that up before I could use it.
The voltage step-up (same that Dave_C recommended from Bangood) was faulty and was unknowingly outputting 9V instead of 5V and destroyed the Tramp VTX. I was rushing and didn't check the output voltage before connecting the VTX. I happened to have a Zeus Nano VTX on hand, so I swapped that in with the 2nd regulator I had (which was OK). I then managed to melt some components off the backup regulator when I caused a short during troubleshooting. So I flew it for a while with the VTX powered from the FC 5V and I found it worked down to almost 2.9V which gave about 12min of flight time. I then replaced with Pololu regulators and a new Tramp Nano VTX.

For the GPS connection, I reassigned UART1 (factory set for the WiFi) to the LED and S5 pins. I then reassigned UART2 RX pin to softserial TX for Tramp VTX control. (Ghost protocol uses UART2 TX pin). At first I tried the GPS via softserial, but couldn't make it work.
Here are the modified resources:

resource MOTOR 5 NONE
resource PPM 1 NONE
resource LED_STRIP 1 NONE
resource SERIAL_TX 1 A08
resource SERIAL_TX 11 A03
resource SERIAL_RX 1 B03
resource SERIAL_RX 2 NONE

Since the Ghost protocol isn't available in Betaflight 4.2, I installed the BF 4.3 development build. I used the new features in BF 4.3 to reorder the motors and to change direction. Very easy!

ESC is flashed with BLHeli_M firmware v16.9 48 kHz PWM.
Edit: after some testing, I believe flight performance and flight time are better with 24khz PWM.

The original build was about 110g without the GPS and with an XT30 soldered to the battery and mounted with a couple elastic bands (because I'm still waiting for the battery holder).
The final version is a remix of a remix... it incorporates the battery holder in the frame and all part shown below. I remixed it further to reduce weight as much as possible and managed to keep the weight at 111g with a GPS added.
I've squeezed out a maximum of 21 min of slow flight time from this build and flown 10km total distance (5km out and back):

Actual DVR of a +9km flight that was 4.5 km out:

If you just want something relaxing to cruise around with, this is a great option.
If you want something to do some medium/long range flying with, this will surprise you!


Part List


NanoLongRange Weight Reduced by justmaykit (2 builds)
See Site

Flight Controller

HGLRC Zeus5 AIO 1-2S F411 Flight Controller 5A BL_S 4in1 ESC with WiFi Function (8 builds)


4 x RCinpower GTS V2 1202.5 11500kv Orange BLOWOUT


Gemfan Hurricane 3018-2 (4CW+4CCW) - 1.5MM Hub (2 builds)

FPV Camera

Caddx Ant 1.8mm 1200TVL 16:9/4:3 Global WDR with OSD 2g Ultra Light Nano FPV Camera for FPV Racing RC Drone (133 builds)

FPV Transmitter

ImmersionRC Tramp Nano 1-500mW 5.8GHz Micro VTX - U.FL (12 builds)


SINGULARITY 5.8 - TrueRC Canada (34 builds)


ImmersionRC Ghost Atto 2.4Ghz Rx (2 builds)


Sony VTC6 3000mAh 15-30A 18650 Battery


RadioMaster TX16S HALL 16ch 2.4ghz (2 builds)


SKYZONE SKY02C 5.8Ghz 48CH Diversity FPV Goggles Support DVR HDMI With Head Tracker Fan For RC Racing Drone (22 builds)

3D Printed

NanoLongRange Weight Reduced by justmaykit (2 builds)
See Site


M2 Black Nylon Phillips Pan Head Machine Screw Metric Thread Round Bolt Assortment kit
See Site

Misc Parts

Keystone 209. 1 Cell Leaf Spring Battery Contact, Spring Steel, Nickel Plating (Pack of 20)
See Site

Misc Parts

iFlight LC Filter Module 3A 5-36V for VTX FPV RC Racing Drone Indoor Racer

Misc Parts

Pololu 5V Step-Up / Step-Down Voltage Regulator S9V11F5
See Site

Misc Parts

Drone GPS Units & Modules for - RaceDayQuads (2 builds)

Radio Module

ImmersionRC Ghost 2.4Ghz JR Module (2 builds)

Battery Charger

LiitoKala Lii-PD4 Li-Ion AC-DC Charger (18650, 21700 +)


X²-AIR 5.8 - TrueRC Canada


OCP 5.8 - TrueRC Canada (14 builds)
Show stores (10)


Sign in to comment

Gumilev   Feb 15, 2023  

Thanks for the detailed build! I tried to repeat the project, 20 minutes of flight seems very tempting to me. I ran into a problem. My Zeus 5 quadcopter crashed. I lost 2 resistors and don't know their value. I would be grateful if you could measure the resistance on them and let me know. I'll try to attach an image where I marked them, but it seems to me that I can't do it. Opposite the USB connector, if you turn the board over and look from the back side, there are 4 black resistors. If you position the board so that the resistors are on the bottom, then I lost two right resistors. Could you help me and tell me their denomination so that I can restore my flight controller? One of these resistances is called by one side to the ground. The second resistance on one side is called to plus 5 volts from the usb connector. Also, these 2 resistances are ringing among themselves. I really look forward to your help. Thank you!

jeffcd   Feb 16, 2023 

Glad to help!
I measured both those resistors at 9.65 k ohms.
Good luck!

Gumilev   Feb 16, 2023 

Thanks, you helped a lot! Finding someone with such a flight controller is very difficult. Thanks for the quick response!

V-22   Apr 06, 2021  

Awesome build! I especially like the remixed frame, lots of great improvements. And congrats on the 9+km flight!

jeffcd   Apr 07, 2021 


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