Arduino Quadrotor on a PCB
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Author Andrei
We have seen a lot of drones on this site. Even Electronoobs made a few PCB drones. The idea of making a PCB-based quadrotor isn't unique, and 4pcb definitely isn't the smallest. But it strikes a good balance between size, cost, buildability, and flyability. It's a PCB quadrotors with integrated brushless motor drivers, so there's no need to wire up external ESCs. And it runs on XBee digital radios, so there's no RC receiver or servo-style wiring. You can see more on the instructabels where Scolton, the creator of taht post, will explain more, here on this link. When he says he build the quad from scratch, he literally did it. Neither did he use any commercially available Radio Control, nor did he use any Electronic Speed Controllers (ESCs).

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Instead he went for creating his own Brushless DC Motor Controller, that too, on the same PCB which acts as the Quadrotor’s Frame. 4pcb is a "low level" quadrotor build, and taht means there are very few black box components. The frame, motor control, flight control, radio interface, and ground station UI are all developed from component or sub-module level. Depending on your level of experience and interest, you may want to take a different approach where you buy commercial modules for some parts and DIY others.

There are a few small changes the designer would make if he would design a second version of the board, but overall, it could make a good standalone project or, even better, a great starting point for your own modifications!

Overall, it took him a few months of free time to improve and tune the controller, learn the controls, and become comfortable flying it. Along the way, he crashed it probably dozens of times, replaced several motors, probably three full sets of propellers, and some landing gear parts, and resoldered a bunch of things. The PCB frame has never broken, though.

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Blog#64 - QUAD on PCB

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