Holybro Kakute H7 w/ SiK Telemetry Radio V3

Hello all,
I’m new to Ardupilot and flight controllers so I’m struggling quite a lot. I’m building a very simple fixed wing aircraft (2 surface controllers - elevator and rudder only) that needs to be autonomous but also radio controllable if the need arises. It needs to be extremely light yet capable of GPS localisation, telemetry and as mentionned above, RC control.

I took a look at the list of flight controllers supported by arduplane and the Kakute boards stand out to me for their very tiny form factor. Specifically, the Kakute H7/ H7 Mini (link). I would like to use it with SiK telemetry radios. Is this feasible? Will it work with RC input? I will be using Mission Planner on a PC as a ground station.

Yes, that looks like it will do the trick. You’ll need to use an RC radio for the initial setup, but once you’ve got it tuned you wouldn’t need an RC. SiK telemetry radios are well known and work fine. Stick with name-brand like Holybro or mRo. There are plenty of clones out there but they seem to cause lots of problems. Just realize the range on SiK radios range won’t be revolutionary. I don’t know about the V3, but with V2 I’ve reached about 700m on a good day in ideal conditions but normally I’m happy if I get 500m from them. Looking at the specs for the V3, i’d expect about the same performance.

Here’s some links:
https://ardupilot.org/plane/docs/common-gcs-only-operation.html#operation-using-only-a-ground-control-station-gcs

https://ardupilot.org/plane/docs/parameters.html#rudder-only-rudder-only-aircraft

Thanks a lot for your reply!!
Do you have any idea how the 3DR radio would be connected to the flight controller if i use the kakute h7 for example? I looked around and I couldn’t find any answers…

In regards to using only the GCS, its sadly not an option. This project is for a competition and for safety reasons we must be able to switch from autopilot to manual flight.

I have one of those boards with a WiFi radio connected to Serial 1. Do the same for the SiK radio.

You need an RC to do the initial setup anyhow.

https://ardupilot.org/plane/docs/common-sik-telemetry-radio.html
You don’t need to connect the CTS/RTS. All you need is Power/Ground/RX/TX. Then set up the serial port on the controller.

Thank you! that was exactly what I was confused about!

Just out of curiosity, which wifi board are you using and what kind of range are you having? Is there any advantage to using Wifi vs 3DR radio telemetry?

ESP8266 radios. I have them on most craft for configuration, calibration and tuning purposes. Range is 100m or less so not much use for live telemetry. One obvious advantage is you don’t need anything on the Ground side. I use Laptops, IOS and Android phones and connection is simple.

A note about telemetry options. I use SiK radios also but I primarily use telemetry on my Transmitter, a Radiomaster, using the Yaapu script. With long range RC systems like Frsky R9 or Crossfire, I use both, the range is very good. TBS has a version of the Crossfire Rx with more power for the transmitted telemetry and range is excellent.

1 Like

Interesting, I’ll keep this in mind, thank you!