3d-printed 5" Racing/Chasing drone (open source) - Tubular 5" TrueX

By Felias - eyefly on Oct 02, 2023

11  0  11

Hi there,

after working on frames based on carbon tubes for the last 3 years, this is the latest one of my designs. It's a TrueX design which is targeted for aggressive freestyle and racing / chasing. This build is only 4s, yet has a maximum thrust of over 4 kilos, while it's weight is only 190g (w/o battery). I needed to limit the motor output to 90%, otherwise when going full throttle the battery would drain way too quickly ^^.
And before you say "But tubular frames have issues with vibration and torsion!!" -> I added a blackbox log of GYRO_SCALED of a throttle ramp that you might find interesting :-) I've been optimizing tube-based frames for a few years to "solve" this issue by design.
The trick is to glue to rods into the 3d-printed parts using superglue or (better:) epoxide. That combined with a few design tweaks that i've learned over the years.
I plan to do a build tutorial video on my YT channel soon.

Regarding the frame:

The big benefits of this design:
1) you can build it at home with a 3d-printer and a simple saw (for cutting the carbon tubes)
2) the price for a frame is around 10$ (except the >8" versions, they are a bit over)

You can find this specific design here: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:6165253
There is a TrueX, WideX and Deadcat version in many different sizes. You can find an overview here: https://www.eyeflydesigns.com/
Also there is a Discord where you'll get all the support needed for building your own: https://discord.gg/R6SYpZbgku
This TrueX-version is the easiest one to build, and i highly recomment going for this one as your first tubular build.
There also is a 3" version available - and i'm working on a 12" version right now ^^

Regarding the build itself:

This is a 4s build. I know that 6s is way more popular, but i dare you to try it out on 4s. The RCinpower 2104 3000kv are just crazy on 4s and 5" props. You have a great throttle authority throughout and it just flies amazing.
I'm using the DJI O3 system because... well, there is nothing comparable out there right now if you want best picture quality - and you're not super sensitive to latency (i do not notice it).
Now i know O3 isn't really a racing platform. However i'm just not really a racer. I'd love to build a strong canopy for it, but therefore your input much be much appreciated - what VTX and Cam should it support?

If you have any questions, hop on Discord :-)




Sign in to comment

Latency   Feb 06, 2024  

what analog camera and antenna would you recommend

Felias - eyefly   Feb 06, 2024 

hi there! Currently i only provide mounts for a 20x20mm camera and an air unit with a 20x20mm mount.

Rotorenpilot   Jan 11, 2024  

Hi, great design, really love the minimalistic concept. I was wondering if you were thinking about a canopy to maybe support a Vista? I just ordered my first 3D printer and I would love to build..of course paint and fly this design...also...just out of curiosity...dem Ingenieur ist nichts zu schwör?

Show 1 more comment
Rotorenpilot   Jan 12, 2024 

Oh yes, I would love that. I would also paint it 😁
And yes, the Vista has a 20x20 mounting pattern and it's been my choice for DJI mainly because of the price.

Felias - eyefly   Jan 12, 2024 

Okay, i've just added the files on Thingiverse. Please test them to see if it works :-) One caveat though: You'll have to use the outer mounting holes. Otherwise it would either be super hard to print... or i'd have to redo the whole canopy :-/ Would be great if you could report back. Either here or on Discord :)

Rotorenpilot   Jan 12, 2024 

Super cool, thank you. I'll take a look when I get a chance and let you know

Glitsch   Oct 08, 2023  

Wow, such a cool design! Crazy that you can build it for about 10€. Also that frame has lots of options to custimize! Would be no problem to fit it to 4" props i think. Nice one.

Felias - eyefly   Oct 09, 2023 

Thank you so much! And yes indeed, customization option are really fun - i already have a lot of designs for additional mounts.
And also the design is parameterized, so i can easily provide you with a 4" version (or any other size) if needed.

maximilian_pircher   Oct 02, 2023  

very nice design! how much was the total cost to build one of those frames and where do you buy the cfk pipes?

Felias - eyefly   Oct 02, 2023 

thanks! The total costs for the frame are super small, it's about 10$ (about 8-9 for the rods, rest for the 3d-print). I added the info at the top. You can find links on the Thingiverse page or on Discord (as suppliers change).

Guides & Reviews

Jun 21, 2021

AirbladeUAV has done it again and this time they've brought long range to the 5" class! Based on the popular Transformer Mini, the new Transformer 5" Ultralight adopts a lot of the same design philosophies with larger props and more payload capacity. It can fly upwards of 20 minutes on a 4 cell Li-Ion battery pack and in ideal conditions it's got a range of over 4 to 5 miles. In this guide I'll walk..

Read more
Mar 04, 2021

With the release of the DJI FPV Drone cinematic FPV has become a lot more accessible, but you certainly don't want to crash a $750 drone! The QAV-CINE Freybott is a compact, lightweight cinematic FPV drone that can take a hit and keep going. It's a lot safer to fly indoors and around people. With a naked GoPro or the SMO 4k you can capture some great stabilized footage. In this guide I'll show you..

Read more