Date: April 7, 2015

The PiDrone Update #3

Main electronics and avionics have now been installed

Components I’m Using:

Turnigy D3536/9 910KV Brushless Outrunner Motor (US Warehouse)

Turnigy nano-tech 4000mah 3S 25~50C Lipo Pack (US Warehouse)

TURNIGY Plush 30amp Speed Controller

3DR Pixhawk (+ GPS and PPM Encoder)

12×4.5 SF Props 2pc CW and 2pc CCW Rotation (Black)

3DR Cloned Telemetry 915 mHZ

  • Almost everything is velcroed on to the acrylic (it sticks well) including the battery
  • Pixhawk is mounted on a square plate with 3DR anti-vibration foam
  • Most electronics are mounted on middle plate, except for GPS, which is mounted on the top place to reduce interference (no mast).
  • DIY Power distribution system with 10 AWG wire splitting in to 4 sets of 16AWG wire. The battery is connected with 4mm HXT plugs, while the motors and the ESCs are connected via 3.5mm bullet plugs




The cheap plastic props had to be reamed with a prop reamer to fit the 8mm shaft of the prop adapter. Nobody sells a metric prop reamer with a starting shaft size of 6mm (they all start at 1/4″!) I had to use a standard prop reamer that produced horribly off centered shaft holes. I bought a Durbo Prop Balancer and balanced the blades with tape, but I doubt it will do much good.

Next up: Test Flights!

The PiDrone Update #2

I have now completed the new and redesigned laser-cut Acrylic Frame. The old frame was made of 1/8″ aluminum which made it quite indestructible, but also  caused interference with the flight controller avionics. Here are some of the improvements of the new design:

  • Mount for Pixhawk Safety Switch
  • Much, much more working space
  • Mounts for Raspberry Pi  and Pi Camera
  • Support for removable anti-vibration mount



Everything is held together with 4-40 screws, and 1″ 4-40 hex standoffs. The 4 aluminum booms purchased from HobbyKing are sandwiched between the two plates securely.The acrylic turned out to be much bendier than I initially believed, so the frame is “squishy” at some areas.

Download Ai Files: Quad Files


The PiDrone – Update #1

The PiDrone is a drone with a Raspberry Pi onboard that I hope to exhibit at Maker Faire Bay Area 2015.

My Goals for the Project Are:

  • Have the Pi and the Drone communicate through 3DR’s Drone Kit 
  • Have the Pi host a web based ground station
  • Create an iOS Ground Station for the drone

I already have a semi-working drone built up from last summer, but it will require extensive repairs and redesign.


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