Flight Times

David,

My wonderful wife purchased a Storm Drone 6, from Helipal.com, for my birthday this summer. I have been flying it a lot and have even started my own YouTube channel. My only issue with it is that is has such limited flight time. About 5 min without camera payload. Is there some way that I can extend my flight times? I’ve put two batteries in parallel and try to keep my throttle input smooth and steady but I’m not sure what else I can do. Should I start to look at swapping out the stock escs and motors? Any input you have would be great. I have been following you and the rest of the flite test crew for a few weeks now and have watched almost all of your videos. Keep up the good work!

 

Thanks!

Tim

2 thoughts on “Flight Times

  1. Hi Tim,

    The easier way to get more flight time is using 4S instead of 3S because for a given total power required for your multirotor, higher voltage will directly translate to less current drawn, which is what ultimately drains the battery. Remember: Power (W) = Voltage (V) x Current (A)

    Your motors should allow to use 4S: if they are 2S/3S motors (which I doubt given the kv they have) then get motors for 4S batteries.

    I personally like Tiger Motors since I find the quality/price good and they always provide tables for thrust, current, efficiency… with different props and a different regimes/voltages. Check this link, http://www.readymaderc.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=1492, and notice that for a given thrust, using 4S draws less current.

    If you wanna buy new motors:

    1. Calculate the take-off weight for different possible batteries you might want to use.
    2. Take the heavier combination and multiply it by 2.2 or more (the greater the number is the more ‘extra’ thrust you have but it also means, sometimes, more difficulty to find proper motor/prop for your set-up).
    3. Divide the previous value by 6 (in the hexacopter case) and the number will give you the thrust per motor/prop combination you need to have a max thrust available of, at least, 2.2.
    4. Go to motor thrust tables and see which motor/prop you need. Remember to check that the prop you choose fits in your multirotor! 😉

    This is an easy way to get a relatively good first shot. For more optimized set-up you can then take into account motor efficiency between feasible motors, use different props in a given size (e.g. Slow Fly, Multirotor…). I personally like to buy several prop types and in 2 sizes to do hovering tests and get the ones best for agressive flight (endurance is not as important), calm flights for aerial photography/FPV (endurance important), etc.

    Just as example: I have an H-quad with motors Emax 2213 935kv (3S/4S), APC 10×5.5 MR props, 4S 4000 mAh battery and take-off weight including battery and FPV gear of 1600 gr. It hovers for 14 min (I use hovering tests to test different set-ups, it obviously has shorter flight time in real flight but over 10 min anyway). Another way to sometimes realize you have an underpowered multirotor is if your sticks position when hovering is over 60-70% of the total stick range.

    Hope this helps!

  2. PS: what is your Youtube channel? Wanna see how this nice hexa of yours flies. You can find my channel searching for ‘Pau Mallol’

    Good luck with your hexa improvements!

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