You can now choose the RCExplorer F3FC Tricopter flight controller (with integrated Power Distribution). Designed based on all the feedback we’ve received since the release of the Naze32 frame. This frame has it all; A more powerful processor, 3A switching BEC with selectable 5/6/8V output, no need for a separate power distribution board, pressure sensor, current sensor, low noise gyro/accelerometer connected via SPI and so much more. Read all about it here.
Another huge leap in flight performance is the feedback enabled BMS210 servo. The flight controller now knows where the servo is at all times, which allows it to much more accurately control the tail. The F3FC frame has a dedicated feedback pad straight on the board for very easy hookup. All ESC’s also have surface mount pads straight on the board, which makes for a very clean build and saves a ton of space on the top of the frame.
A carbon fiber bottom board is now also available. Increased stiffness, reduced weight (25% less) and über cool looks.
The Mini Tricopter, a different mini multirotor that packs a punch.
If you’re wondering how to build the copter with the new F3FC check out the Tricopter V4 build video. The build is almost identical.
The Mini Tricopter was designed to utilise parts from the Tricopter V4. It uses the same F3FC frame, servo, tilt mechanism, motor mounts, front spacer and arms (cut to half length). Which means that you can convert your regular size tricopter to a Mini Tricopter simply by cutting the arms (or getting new pre-cut ones) and screwing on the Mini Tricopter add-on frame. (Warning: cutting carbon fiber is dangerous and may harm your health. Use proper protection if you try it.) Also, don’t forget to downsize the electronics accordingly.
The frame has a built-in adjustable mount for a board-camera with up to a 40x40mm footprint. The angle can be adjusted continuously between 0 and 40° so that you can start out easy and as you progress in your flying, you can add more and more angle to the camera. The camera is well protected by the frame itself as well as the fact that it is held in place by rubber bands, which protects the camera even more during a crash.
The Mini Tricopter also easily carries a GoPro camera with protective housing. The camera is easily mounted on the top of the frame. A GoPro4 session or Mobius/Runcam can be mounted inside of the frame on the Mobius Shelf. This plate can be mounted in two positions to allow for different configurations and camera angles. The supplied silicone camera wedge can be used to fine-tune the angle of the camera.
Flying the Mini Tricopter can be best described as driving an overpowered rear-drive car. It’s not the fastest around the track, but you’ll have the biggest grin on your face when the race is over. The recommended electronics package makes this little beast go almost 160km/h (100mph). The thin arms and smallish body makes it pretty aerodynamically slippery. It requires very little power to cruise at high speeds and it absolutely loves long low-passes with big wide turns. Flips, loops and rolls are quick and crisp thanks to the center of gravity and center of mass being very close to each other.
Transporting the Mini Tricopter is really easy as the arms can be folded back, just like on the larger tricopter. Folded up it’s only 10cm wide and 30cm long (35cm with 6 inch props sticking out straight back) and 8cm tall. The folding design also makes the Mini Tricopter crash resistant, as the arms may fold back, absorbing energy. The tough “cage” protects the electronics and battery on the inside.
The recommended battery size for the Mini Tricopter is a 4S 1800mAh with a C rating of 35 and upwards. Be sure to check the size of the battery as only batteries up to 110x35x35mm will fit inside of the “cage”. Larger batteries can be fitted on top or below but you’d lose the protection. I also highly recommend using the tricopter frame with integrated F3FC with built-in PowerDistribution board, otherwise, it will get really cramped inside of the “cage”.
To make setup as smooth as possible all PID’s, filters, TPA, tail TPA and such are already tuned for the recommended electronics package. Just click the “Preconfigured Cleanflight Setup” tab above and follow the instructions.
The kit contains:
- 3 x 1/2 length carbon fiber arms
- 2 x Motor mounts
- 1 x Front spacer
- 1 x Tricopter top board of your choice
- 1 x Tricopter bottom board of your choice
- 1 x Tilt mechanism
- 1 x Servo setup tool
- 1 x GoPro strap
- 1 x Battery strap
- 1 x Zip-ties
- 1 x Tricopter side plate
- 8 x 40mm Standoffs
- 1 x Frame holders
- 1 x Top tray
- 1 x Board camera mount + mobius mount
- 1 x Black rubber bands
- 1 x Mini tricopter screw pack
- 1 x Silicone wedge
Some of you might remember my everlasting battle with manufacturing of the carbon fiber arms. There is a reason why most companies I’ve approached have declined to even try making them. 10x10mm woven square tubes are really difficult to make. Extruded tubes this size is no problem, but they really suck. The arms we sell now are fantastic when it comes to strength, weigh, stiffness and have no warp.
The problem is that the surface finish is almost impossible to get perfect. So far we’ve discarded large parts of batches due to these imperfections and it’s really not sustainable. We at least need to break even on the arms. That would mean either almost doubling the price or lowering the standards, or stop selling them altogether.
Right now the most reasonable thing seems to be lowering the cosmetic standards in our quality checks. To be clear; only the surface finish is effected. The structural integrity and function is unaffected and the arms will be just as strong as before. The difference is that you might get arms that are scratched, have small dimples, have a visible edge of the carbon or other cosmetic impurities. Again, this will not effect the function or performance of the arms.
Since you will now receive a lower quality product we have lowered the prices.
- 3 x EMAX RS2205 2300KV Motors
- 3 x Littlebee 30A ESC’s
- 1 x BMS-210DMH Servo
- 1 x HQ6x4.5 CCW Propellers
- 1 x HQ6x4.5 CW Propellers
More from the RCExplorer store:
- A beeper is highly recommended. It makes the setup procedure a lot easier, and it can be used as a lost model alarm, failsafe indicator, low battery and so on.
- 6mm Wire mesh for protecting the ESC cables
- 3mm Wire mesh for protecting servo cables
- Male to male servo connectors
- XT60 battery connector with 5cm cable
From another supplier:
- Camera: Sony Effio 800TVL WDR 2.8mm lens
- Alternative: PZ0420M 600TVL (without case)
- Transmitter: Fatshark 600mW 5.8GHz transmitter
- Antennas: Spironets
- Video googles: Fatshark Attitude SD
You will also need a RC Transmitter and receiver (Such as the FRsky Taranis). Make sure the receiver supports PPM or SBUS (or serial connection)
This kit requires understanding of electronics, proficient skill in soldering and piloting skill. To fly multirotors, based on cleanflight/betaflight and similar, you will need to give constant stick input. The copter will not fly on it’s own (autonomously) nor will not hold its position in the air in standard configuration. It’s designed to give the best flight experience possible with great flying characteristics. A flight controller of the type this multirotor is using is designed to be felt as little as possible, this in order to let the pilot feel exactly what the copter is doing and to allow for precise flying without the feeling of fighting the flightcontroller.
Although tough, the tricopter is not designed as a beginner platform, but to provide the absolute best flight characteristics and performance. It’s possible to learn to fly on it, but I would recommend that you learn on a smaller platform such as the Eflite Inductrix or on a simulator before taking on a multirotor like this.
It is possible to connect a GPS to this platform, but functionality in the firmware is still under development. It is not a turnkey solution and it will not perform like a DJI Phantom. Autonomous flight is possible but it will require a lot of research, tuning and time to get it to work well.
Want to make your own? That’s correct, You can download the design files for free. Even if you don’t have the money to support me, I still want you to be able to enjoy the hobby by making it yourself. Please enjoy and share this great hobby with someone. Click here for the download page.