freestyle tooooob

By IcarusIX on Jun 23, 2019

12  870  10

I'm finally back to fpv, so the first thing I wanted to make is a durable basher build which is easy to maintain. bit like an ordinary QAV 210 (I had quite the break clearly -- ) but they're boring. but now I have a few friends interested in flying things so my requirements changed a bit. since my friends might fly fixed wing, I wanted to try chasing and recording videos and that stuff. so my QAV plan turned into a 6 inch tubular HD cam-carrying frame plan. Tubular frames were the most exciting thing I ever tried (flying-wise) and so I decided to try combining chunky freestyle and aero tube frames, whilst still being a workable durable basher. This is what happened.
280mm (It can almost fit 7 inch props)
310g without HD cam or battery (really heavy in my books but I'll forgive myself because I used what I had and I had some heavy stuff and I also used separate pdb and all. also did I mention 280mm? this thing is pretty huge...   it has still got aero arms so i'm not losing a lot of thrust anyways)
the tubes are 4ODx2mmID tubes, I'm hoping the large plate support and triangulation should give me some strength. I have used a ton of epoxy at the joints, the motor mounts are basically epoxy blocks.
If you look closely, you can see the Emax nighthawk and the Shendrones corgi (sorry mr shen, but u totally missed my messages on insta months ago :D ) so this really is a bit of a frankenquad
I already mentioned but I'm pretty happy with the arm area under the props, so long as they don't disintegrate.
Also, its not like this is a build log but I like seeing posts with lots of pics so I tried to include more in my own this time :)


  • jeeesus, after posting this, this build reminded me of the true fpv days, issues galore. first, I hadn't apparently stored these electronics well. Vtx doesn't work anymore (replaced it with one of those tiny runcam vtx's), and an esc had detached smd components like the capacitor in the pic below. Also had to remap motor outputs, those weren't working. so it took a while to actually get all 4 motors even spinning and fpv working. The bigger issues were after that. (The rabbit is Lily btw)
  • DEBILITATING oscillations and it made scary noises :'( , definitely the frame, I hadn't seen these bad oscillations for a while, it reminded me of the craziness of a mis-oriented fc. I went to the fc and tried to improve the vibration isolation and I put electrical tape under the motors and it improved enough to take off but not in a controlled fashion. I turned attention to pids and gyro filters and finally, it hovered but still with some pretty bad oscillations which I mostly tuned out. Ill put more time into tuning because its getting better. (the horrible initial vibes were actually because of a loose motor mount. I'm an idiot so I didn't roughen the surfaces before bonding so they all eventually fell off with crashes but I have epoxied them back on with roughening and even more securely. vibes are down more so the worst of it was totally my fault but I reckon some vibes are still due to the crazy stiffness of the whole frame)

Flying- before I get into how it flies, the durability isn't actually as bad as I expected? The main center of the frame and the tubes themselves are a very sturdy assembly and the only parts which separated so far are the emax nighthawk motor mount arm pieces which after putting pack on, have stayed on. I had 2 pretty hard, full throttle fast crashes (into grass though) and it seems to be holding up, they were the kinda crashes I expected to break it.
Actually flying, this has really whooshy quiet punchouts where theres more movement than noise which I'll put down to the arms. after sorting the vibes, this was pretty fun to fly, not too different to what I remember with my last frame but definitely a bit more precise in control and I feel it's slightly more locked in? Hopefully that feeling will intensify when I use 6 inch props (have only been flying the hq 5043 and kk 4045 (kinda for lols) so far). I really like it. Now just to keep it alive for a while.....

update: dead. killed in a meet recently. moving on to better ideas and will build or design a super strong basher in the meantime



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SpikeDiesel   Jul 14, 2019  

aww man is this thing still in 1 piece, soo much work bro I feel for ya, next time buy a few Chinese clone frames to bash n have backup parts

IcarusIX   Jul 18, 2019 

Lol nah, I took it to a meet recently and a few midairs destroyed the epoxy motor mounts and cracked one tube. the tube structure was surprisingly strong in itself so I may revisit this with stronger motor mounts

Noboody   Jun 25, 2019  

Nice design, I really like your use of carbon tube. I am working on a 2.5" proto with dual tubular arms so I'm really interested by this design.

Do you also fix the "motor pad" to the tube in the same way as you fix the tubes to the central plate ?
What are the internal and external dimension of your tube ?

EDIT : Oh I just saw that you added a picture of the motor pad and the "glue". Nice bunny btw !

IcarusIX   Jun 30, 2019 

sorry for the late reply, and thanks! the motors are indeed epoxied on but the motor screws also lock the tubes in. the tubes are 4x2mm od and id. good luck on that tube frame, sounds good!

Jodie Froster   Jun 24, 2019  

I love your adventuresome spirit, please don't crash! I can literally see 20 different places where that thing won't even survive 3 crashes, if even 1. Just don't crash.

IcarusIX   Jun 24, 2019 

Thanks, I'll see how it goes in the long term but for now its taking far harder tumbles than I expected it to so I'm really happy. its kinda funny, I made it, told myself I will only do slow cruising and chasing in wide open area and then I had my maiden los indoors and took it out and did proximity first thing... I mostly do proximity freestyle so once I had the goggles on I kinda just forgot and sent it lol. It's alive and I'm curious to see what it takes to bring it down, even if I want it to be my everyday basher ie. to keep it going. except concrete and metal poles. I surrender to those 😂

thumbtwiddler   Jun 23, 2019  

looks awesome! how's it fly?

IcarusIX   Jun 24, 2019 

The most significant things about flying this is the control, is that It feels more precise I think? its a lot quieter and I got a 10 min flight flying agressive and at the top of my sticks with a 3000mah 3s and about 4-5 min full-agressive on a 1500mah 4s. other than that, its almost 25% lighter than my watermelonfish so its pretty nimble and without the hd cam, feels like a light racer with higher kv on a 550mah 4s (with a 1 min flight time lol). And thanks :D

Rhart   Jun 23, 2019  

are the carbon tubes 3k woven or pultruded? trying to find some 4mmx2mm woven tube myself... thanks

IcarusIX   Jun 23, 2019 

They're pulltruded, roll wrapped would have been better for sure but I just picked up some cheap plane spars at a local hobby shop which is why I made it with that. The length that they bear load over is small in the arms anyways so I'm not too worried. roll wrapped seems to be harder to find in a larger variety of sizes though, depending where you are, so good luck

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