3" Cinematic Toothpick Avatar Walksnail VTX

By Iceboundfpv on Mar 14, 2023

3  76  0

This is a little 3" 2S quad intended for exploration and cinematic flying using the CNC Madness modified pickle frame. The weight without the battery is 60 g, so flight times are a little over 10 min of mild cinematic flying. Typically I'm flying this with a Tattu 550mAh battery, so the total weight is just under 100 g.

It uses the lightweight walksnail avatar 1S video transmitter paired with a TrueRC Singularity antenna, running off of the 5V BEC. I'm flying it with crossfire for the control link, since that's what I started with, but I'm sure you could save a few grams by switching to express LRS. The battery straps are 3-D printed with slightly flexible TPU filament, which is awfully convenient, but does prevent easy switching to a different battery size.

The flight controller is the JHEMCU Updated GHF411 pro, which works great. If I had one complaint, it would be that the 5V BEC pad is on the opposite side of the flight controller from the digital video TX/RX. I just ran wires across the flight controller from the far side, so not a big problem but slightly annoying. I will also mention that the nominal 9V BEC doesn't work as claimed with a 2S set up since it is a down regulating voltage converter and simply gives you your battery voltage minus a diode drop, i.e. 7-8 V. In some cases that might be fine but in other cases that will make your digital video transmitter drop out early as your voltage drops. This isn't a problem though for the lightweight walksnail avatar 1S video transmitter because it can just run off of the 5V supply.

As I mentioned, the frame is the CNC Madness modified Pickle EVO2 MK3 Single plate: Nano HD(2.5mm) frame, based on an original design by Alex a.k.a. Ledroneclub and then modified by Nick to make a single baseplate version. I've been flying this for over a year on a different quad with the Runcam split 4 camera and it works great. The props are out of view, it's fairly lightweight using just the single baseplate, and there isn't any camera Jell-O if you have the camera rigidly mounted to the frame. There's actually only 3 mounting holes for a 25 mm stack because the rear hole is a couple millimeters too far back, but that's possible to work around with a little 3-D printed piece. Separately, I cut out a slightly larger hole in the center of the frame, below the flight controller, to hold the crossfire receiver and give a little more room for the boards in the stack. There turned out to be plenty of room with the 20 mm stack screws, so this may have been unnecessary. Also, since the walksnail avatar camera has such a wide field of view, the props are slightly visible with the camera in its current position. I might move it a little further forward in the future but then that exposes it more to crash damage.

All of the magenta 3-D printed pieces are using PETG for heat resistance and durability. The camera mount is printed with PLA to get better precision. The camera mount is fixed which is great for or avoiding camera Jell-O, but for folks who want a different camera angle, an adjustable mount would be needed, or a different fixed mount. I am flying with 0° uptilt which is great for slow exploring, but most people will be using more uptilt.



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