Hero VTOL 4+1 Fixed wing

There are motor mounting screws in the accessory bag, and the installation tutorial of electronic equipment is still being updated.


Decided to put a Mauch current sensor in so waiting on the mail …

Here’s my 1st go at a parameter file for the Orange Cube w/Here3 CAN Gps
[edit: removed param file - had 4 errors in it …]
My motors are servo positions 9 to 13

Flight modes are:
RTL (w/a vtol landing)

Forgot to update on the maiden results!

wind 6-10 mph
TO in QLoiter - steady, tested rotation and direction control. climbed up to 30’
FBWA - good transition. Sluggish roll in-flight - need to adjust the params…
Auto - just fine
RTL (with QRTL 1 mode set) - flew back but after transition, had problems finding the TO point, landed manually. Never did a compass calibration and windy

Landed in QHover - very smooth touchdown

All in all, it did just fine. Should be warmer/calmer in a few days so I can give it a proper testing/adjustment.

Only problem in the build - I used the longer M3 bolts to hold the motor rods to the wing instead of the shorter ones so they made a hole in the CF tube (with a nice cracking sound to go along with it). It seems to have survived my error.

The Hero has flown great from the start. However, my software settings caused an odd circling (not the toilet bowl type) on landing even though QLoiter and all other modes worked beautifully. Only during the auto land was it messed up. I started again from scratch w/the software and flights since have been great so have begun putting it into its final configuration. It will have Lion’s for cruise and a LiPo for Vtol operations.
Attached my param file if it may prove useful to someone. The scr is enabled as I tried the VtolAutotune on Github.
hero20Dec22.param (20.2 KB)

Thank you for the test information you provided, which version of firmware are you using?

sorry about the late response … holidays and bad weather kept me away …

I was using ArduPlane 4.3.1

But, as I was checking the version a few minutes ago, saw there is a new one so
upgraded to 4.3.2 but haven’t flown w/ that version yet.

Just finished setting up two noses (had to make a gimbal for a GoPro Hero8) and
only have to finish making up the Lion flight packs.

Short video of a fully auto TO and Landing.
The landing isn’t normally so long but I saw the airspeed getting too low and returned to land. (I did notice the throttle was in idle, so I probably need to check my settings in Arduplane [ ver 4.3.2 ])
[edit: I have ARSPD_FBW_MIN = 12 which is the stall speed posted for the Hero at MFE’s site. No wonder it was stalling!]


Hi Mike,
Apart from stall speed, down speed seems too low, so landing took a bit long… Normally I set down speed about 3m/s (in Vtol mode). May I ask you:
1). What is current draw during cruising?
2). I am curious which one is more efficient compared with your Fighter during cruising?
3). What is your Q_ASSIST_SPEED? Is it 12m/s ?

If stall speed is about 12m/s, I think you better set minimum speed to be about 20% higher, or about 14m/s.

Happy New year 2023

1). What is current draw during cruising? Haven’t started the long hauls yet but it seems to be around 10A in cruise (set for 18 m/s cruising)

2). I am curious which one is more efficient compared with your Fighter during cruising? IDK, will see after I finish setting this up. Just about ready. Cameras, etc. installed. just have to finish making up the Lion’s for forward flight. Plan on using a 5,000 for vtol but think that’ll be overkill…

  1. Q_ASSIST_SPEED is set at 14 (actually forgot about that!)

hi great fly, ı have a kind of same vtol and my rtl transition is so bad, when ı switch to qhover from fbwa transition is very good, but if ı set change q_rtl when in rtl_radius vtol is messed up shaking and almost crashing, are you problem was happen before is same ?

Here’s an unedited “cockpit” view of today’s flight.
The camera is hard mounted, and the plane has not been tuned for smoothness,
(although I probably won’t mess w/it as it flies pretty smooth as is …).
BTW - was cold and a little breezy at times

The vtol climb and transitions are as good as I could ask. The return transition is relatively smooth and the landings have all been great (and within a foot of the takeoff spot!)

The problem was after transition, the plane would slow down enough to require vtol assist to keep flying. Today I disabled the pitot system and zero problems ( other than flying too fast which kept the amp draw too high). I’ll troubleshoot the pitot system (ie replace the unit :slight_smile: ) and that should be done with.

Finished the 16,400 Lion pack for forward flight but still need a 6000 LiPo up front (for the rotors) for balance - even w/the cameras mounted. Which is OK as it will allow several stop and loiters during the flight.

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This plane has been flying so well!

Just finished mapping a 3 sq mi area at 50 ft (w/3 missions) and it performed flawlessly. I’ve even had a number of government contractors who fly drones complement on the smooth transitions, flights, and landings.

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More Hero video tutorials at the link below.

Hi there,

Generally speaking I have been quite impressed with the platform. However, I have encountered one quite serious issue which I hope someone can advise on. During an initial test in QLOITER, one of the VTOL motors had rotated slightly on its CF tube, putting the plane into a spin. Somehow I managed to still land the plane safely and I subsequently made sure to double check the tightness of all the VTOL motor mounts - I also tilted them inwards by 2 degrees to improve yaw authority.

I followed up with another QLOITER test and everything seemed to be fine. I then attempted a simple automated takeoff, fly to WP, loiter and return with VTOL landing. The takeoff WP and loiter were all perfect. Upon return, the plane entered its VTOL transition for landing, as it was descending, the plane went into an uncontrolled spin again. Upon crash landing, most of the VTOL motors had rotated - I suspect the same issue of rotated VTOL motor mount caused the spin and subsequent crash.

Is there a knack to getting these VTOL motor mounts securely fitted to the CF tubes? I could always bolt them tighter on but under that force I would be concerned about cracking the CF tube. I am considering applying some glue around the meeting points between mount and CF tube but this would make any replacement of ESC a bit of a pain.

I could also wrap one layer of electrical tape around the tube before putting the mount on and tightening.

Suggestions welcome!

  1. It is recommended to install the motor base horizontally. It is difficult to ensure the consistency of the angle of inclination of the motor base.
  2. It is recommended to use epoxy glue to fix the connection between the motor base and the carbon tube to reduce the impact of vibration.

I’ve always put a small smear of Goop on the brackets.

I don’t know what your motor mounts look like - but is there any chance you could drill completely through an area and add a thru bolt that goes thru the motor mount and tube. I am assuming the mounts get loose enough to twist sometimes - but not so loose that they are falling off or causing vibration issues.

I was considering this but was worried about undermining the structural integrity of the CF tubes. I can confirm that I ended up smearing some cyanoacrylate glue on the CF before sliding on the mount and lining up for a 2 degree inward tilt which seems to have done the trick.

I run thru bolts through several of my frames. No problem here. Just a small hole for an M2 screw and wet the drill bit often if you can.