By Phanny P on Apr 15, 2017

6 663  17 

Thank God the warm weather is finally here! Continuing the R&D on quad frame physics in pursuit of efficiency: https://downanddirtydrones.com/drone-physics/

So far, I am convinced of the advantages of a "Z frame": https://downanddirtydrones.com/air-drag-and-cross-sections/

The main objective was to design a frame that will have the center of thrust, center of gravity, and center of pressure all in alignment while keeping the cross section as small as possible. The main challenge here was the battery placement (up to a 5s lipo fits inside the body tube). Another nice feature is that the motors can be set at any angle.

One objective that I decided to ditch (for now) was waterproofing. I tried it on the C3 project (the black one pictured below) and things went wrong. An ESC overheated, shut down, and it crashed into a boat before dropping into the ocean. It didn't matter that it was waterproof once the body was broken open...

No mount for a GoPro style cam, but a Mobius Mini can easily be placed on it and I am extremely happy with the quality.

NOT happy yet with my flying skills...


Part List


See Site

Flight Controller

BetaflightF3 Flight Controller (148 builds)


4 x Spedix ES30A HV 3-6S ESC BLHeli_S (66 builds)


4 x Brotherhobby Tornado 2206 T2 (4 builds)


RK5051 Triprop Emerald Blue Clear (Set of 4)

FPV Camera

Crazepony 700TVL Wide Angle FPV Camera 700TVL 3.6mm Lens NTSC for QAV250 (3 builds)

FPV Transmitter

AKK X1 40CH 25mW/200mW/600mW Switchable FPV Transmitter with Push Button and Digital Display (10 builds)


Anbee FPV 5.8Ghz Circular Polarized Clover Leaf Antenna High Gain Aerial Set w/RP-SMA Female Plug (4 builds)


Lemon Rx DSMX Compatible Diversity Satellite (DSM2 backward compatible but must use DSMX compatible primary receiver) LM0037 (30 builds)


SMC Extreme 1400mah 4S Racing Battery - True Spec Extreme (12 builds)

Misc Parts

Online Metal Supply 5052-O Aluminum Round Tube 2" OD x .035" W x 12"

Misc Parts

Tarot Dia 10MM 3K Carbon Fiber Tube Boom 280MM TL68B22 For FY680 Quadcopter Hexacopter Multi Rotor (3 builds)

Misc Parts

2 x ESTES 303168 NC-80B Nose Cone (1) ESTT3168

Misc Parts

Micro uBlox M8N GPS GLONASS W/ (18x18mm) (6 builds)

Misc Parts

MagiDeal Pack of 4 Carbon Fiber Tube 8*6mm 330mm DIY Vanished Surface Tail Tube (4 builds)

Misc Parts

4 Pcs 9 Type Connection Fittings 10mm Carbon/Fiberglass Tube Connection Accessories for Multi/Quadcopter Landing Gear
Show stores (7)


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Don   May 28, 2017  

Some good ideas - being new to quads, I was wondering why more people weren't homing in on the better aerodynamics of tubular motor booms, but I guess the cf plate construction is a lot easier.

Phanny P   May 28, 2017 

That's the only thing I can figure since I was trying to think of a way to manufacture and sell kits. Making a frame from a plate is a lot more economical as far as the labor and time that goes into making all the cuts that need to be made.

Oh nut   May 28, 2017 

I'd say that most frames are becoming more aerodynamic with pods to hold components and skinnier arms to not block any thrust. Also, tubular arms would probably add weight to the quad and might not even help too much in forms of aerodynamics.

Phanny P   May 28, 2017 

Been doing research/calculations for nearly a year: tubes are lighter and stronger. Drag coefficient is half that of a flat arm... Article comparing the 2: https://downanddirtydrones.com/round-motor-arms/

metropolis   Apr 16, 2017  

Nice man! I've been into your work for a bit now and happy to see something else pop up! Keep it up!

Phanny P   Apr 16, 2017 

Too many ideas - never enough time... I remember the offer to crash test the C2. I also managed to crash that one too (told you I would have no problem doing it myself)! It did not hold up as well as the C5 since the polycarbonate tube cracked. I'll be in high gear testing new stuff from now til fall!

Gear Reviews

8 1,099 
By Whiffles 19 days ago

Save 15% with coupon PaypalBG15% on the EV100 at Banggood The much anticipated Eachine EV100 headset has finally arrived! Opinions have been quite polarized and unless you've never flown FPV before you're likely to find fault in the field of view (FOV). I've tried a number of headsets and have to admit that I've been spoiled by the FatShark HD2 and HD3 goggles. That being said this is nowhere near that price bracket, so I'd like to compare the EV100 to a few headsets around the same price. Keep in mind that these cost $100 when they were released, so the current $159 price is likely to come down. EV100 vs the Competition I've been a long supporter of the Eachine EV800. It's a great headset for the price (~$55). Feature for feature it's the most comparable headset to the EV100. Both keep reading..

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