I jumped onto the UAV bandwagon about 6 months ago. I got myself a DJI Flame-wheel 450 and was trying out various MultiWii boards. I then got myself a APM 2.5 and installed v2.9.1b a few months back. I got it working for the most part. The Stabilize mode was working all right, but I had some issues getting Loiter to work consistently and RTL would get the Quad back to the point of launch (or close to) about 75% of the time. I used to fly mostly in my backyard. But, there was not much room out there.
Yesterday, I installed v3.0.1, and was able to get everything configured and setup in a few hours. The Mission Planner v1.2.67 has been improved vastly and it’s actually pretty cool to use. Before upgrading the firmware to v3.0.1, I went into the Terminal CLI and erased the EEPROM, just to make sure that no older configs/parameters etc., were lingering around. I then installed the new firmware and went about it step by step.
The only parameters/PIDs I had to change from the defaults were the following:
Roll/Pitch Rate Control P: 0.145
Stabilize Roll/Pitch P: 4.0
RTL_ALT: 0 (so as to maintain current altitude during RTL)
The DJI Flamewheel 450 configuration is standard, with the APM 2.5, UBlox GPS, 3DR Telemetry Radio, Spektrum AR6115e 6ch receiver (using a Dx8 Spektrum transmitter), and Turnigy 3s 11.1v, 35C LiPo batteries. No additional payload on the quad yet.
I took out to an open field and tried it yesterday and it worked real good. The Alt-Hold was very good; the Loiter was pretty stable and RTL worked great. The only point I wanted to make was that, the quad came back to the point of launch and came down to 2m and hovered, but it did not land on its own. It thought it was supposed to, but I probably have to do some more reading to make sure.
I also tried the “Position” Flight-Mode but that was not as stable as the Loiter. But, I tried that just once. Maybe I’ll retry in a few days and provide an update.
This v3.0.1 version of the Arducopter is quite impressive and I would like to thank all of the developers who have put in so much effort and time to create a very cool open-source Autopilot.
I also bought a Naza M Lite about a week ago and set it up on a similar DJI f450 setup. It works great, as advertised. The Alt-Hold and GPS-Position Hold work awesome. But, the main issue is that it lacks telemetry and the ability to tune, and much more.
But, this version of the Arducopter looks very promising and I’m glad that I have it working. Will do a few more test flights as time permits, and post any updates as necessary.
Thanks and happy flying.