Wedge's first 'real' RC re-entry - DJI F450 Build
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  1. #1
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Wedge's first 'real' RC re-entry - DJI F450 Build

    Hi all.

    This thread will be used to keep track of my re-entry into the RC world as I attempt to get my head around the world of RC heli/quad. I have decided to go for a thread here as opposed to some other sites as this community seems very supportive and a 'safe' place to ask the most basic of questions, without too much eye rolling nor judgement. Congratulations to the mods and the community as a whole on that one. I may post a similar thread over at http://www.multirotorforums.com/forum.php just for more specialised assistance, but I am sure there are loads of members here that can provide help when needed.


    So I hope this thread will serve two purposes:
    1. To help me achieve success in my build;
    2. To create a reference point for others in my position.
    So, here we go,


    I have experience with planks, but moved to FNQ some 8 years ago. At that point, I sold all of my gear and focused on my career and family. Now living in a small rural community some 100km from Cairns, I was bitten by the bug again and started on coaxial helis and some e-Flite micro stuff (MSR and 120SR) and almost took the plunge to go for a 'real' heli. My interest was in aerial photography. After realising the commitment involved in learning helis, I backed off and left it for another time.



    Recently, I have been forced to spend time away from work, and found myself bored and looking for something to do. Enter the MQX, another e-Flite product. This thing has been brilliant fun and has had me digging up old skills (and helis) and thoughts... "Maybe I should look at getting back into it.


    I woke up on Saturday morning with some slight buyers remorse, I had ordered a DJI F450 artf kit... I will be building this slowly and learning as I go. I will be using it to enter the field of aerial photography as a hobby only.



    Here's what I have:


    1. Spektrum DX7 TX - This I am going to get looked at as I want things to go right from the start
    2. A DJI F450 kit
    3. A soldering station with some very basic skills and knowledge


    What I know I need:
    1. An FC, Naza-m - Ordered
    2. A Receiver -OrangeRx R910 ordered
    3. Batteries and charger - Swallow EQ purchased, 4 * Turnigy 4000mAh 3S 30C ordered
    4. Heatshrink (sizes?) - Assorted sizes purchased
    5. Hex tools - HK set purchased
    6. Loctite
    7. Loads more knowledge...
    Here is what I don't/didn't know I need (community generated):
    1. .....


    I'll be updating this as you guys post below (I hope you'll post), please recognise that I am stupid, but don't want this to turn condescending and am putting myself out there to achieve the two goals mentioned at the top. I would love this to be a community generated go to guide for others...


    Mods, if I am out of place with this, let me know and I'll understand.




    Wedge.
    Last edited by Wedge; 14-11-2012 at 07:51 AM.

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  3. #2
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    Welcome to the Forum

    First thing, ask heaps of questions, it makes learning a whole heap cheaper than buying and crashing

    I am sure once people spot your thread they will chime in with a heap of helpful tips and answers.

    I am not much of a flyer, but will help where I can....I do have an exellent track record for crashing every plane or heli I have ever touched....

    Cheers
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    Mr.Leopard is on a distinguished road
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    For tools you cant really go past mip Thorpe tools then I'd consider hudy tools as a second best

    Eds and hudy tips are the same quality

    Heatshrink I prefer the dual wall from jaycar ....it's got a hot glue lining on the inside so when it heats up it shrinks and glues and makes everything nice and snug aswell as waterproof to a point

    Receiver....dunno what onboard flight system you will be using but if you need a spektrum receiver I'd be going with an ar7000 with external satellite as a bare minimum

    Connectors I prefer anything bullet....deans tend to be unsafe imo as they don't handle the current as good as bullets do....I've had Deans plugs get that hot in my onroad tenth scale that the solder melted clean off and the plug looked like it had been freshly tinned

    Surely others will chime in too with their opinions

    Sent from my GT-I9300T using Tapatalk 2

  5. #4
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    a receiver with 'failsafe'.. the Naza has 'return to home' or 'hover, then land' when the radio link fails, but you'd need a reciever that has 'failsafe' for it to kick in...

    Hobbyking have a temp controlled iron for very little $, but they sell out quick.
    http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s..._AUS_plug.html
    You might need a larger iron for doing battery terminals, a 40W iron is about right.

    this will work,
    http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...pare_Tip_.html
    Last edited by rcroadtrain; 12-11-2012 at 04:25 PM.
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  6. #5
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Thanks guys,

    I ordered my batteries, some hex tools and some other bits today, but am about to order the Naza-m module. Can anyone tell me what the function of this is: https://www.perthrc.com.au/dji-led-b...-for-naza.html It looks like it could be shiny and blinks, therefore, I should get it.....

    I am good for an iron. I have a decent station already.

    Re the RX, advice on that would be much appreciated. I am running a DX7 at the moment. I wouldn't mind getting something REALLY cheap just to get the initial setup/tests etc with the naza going and do some extremely low level hover checks, no real flying though. Any suggestions for a CHEAP one for now and then something that will suit the DX7 with a view to upgrade to a DX8 in the future?

    Something like this for now perhaps... http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...arehouse_.html
    Last edited by Wedge; 13-11-2012 at 02:46 PM.

  7. #6
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    that bit from PerthRC already comes with the Naza.. Its called a "VU"

    They're about $16 in USA, so $18.50 in Perth is ..ok...

    It takes the battery, provides 5V and (I think) 3.3V to the Naza, and has the USB socket on it for programming/updating/adjusting the Naza..
    Also has a tri-colour LED that blinks to tell you what the Naza is up to..

    a must-have, already comes with the Naza....
    Last edited by rcroadtrain; 13-11-2012 at 04:25 PM.
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  8. #7
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    That Rx will do nicely.. twin satelite ports, sbus, failsafe.. its all good!

    the Naza has the option of using individual receiver three wire leads, or using one 'sbus' lead. It comes with a handfull of three wire leads..

    I've got the 7ch OrangeRX receiver on order at the moment, its almost the same, but $8 cheaper..
    dont know if the Au warehouse has any, mine's tied up in a backorder from HKing Hkong.
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  9. #8
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    First post updated... I think I am well on my way!

    Thanks for the input so far folks. I'll be adding pics of the build as it progresses. I would love to start tinkering now, but it is probably best to wait for it all to arrive first. (Plus I need to install a new motherboard on this PC today. With the use of just one arm due to recent surgery, that'll be enough of a challenge for the day!)

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    R/C Apprentice sxygtr is on a distinguished road
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    Look fwd to the pics and good luck i am going to attempt building an Align T-Rex 450 heli should be fun.
    My crap:
    Tamiya Tam Tech Mini Frog loves getting run over by monster trucks / Traxxas Stampede 2wd bash machine / HPI Savage Flux XS crash machine / HSP 4wd 1/10th Buggy in bits / Team C 1/8th scale 4wd buggy / Kyosho Super Ten GP 4wd Nitro on road

  11. #10
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Well now.....

    The postie must have been decked out in red and white this morning as Christmas has come early! All my gear has arrived, bar the HK bits, so I am going to start the build today. Soldering is not my forte and will be even more of a challenge whilst I have this arm in a sling! Def not going to rush things, but am excited to start.


    Pics to follow.

  12. #11
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Ok, where are we up to here...

    The F450 has gone together well. All electronics are in including the newly arrived Orange 9ch RX. Batteries have been rewired with T's and the quad is powering on with a satisfying beep. The RX is bound to my DX7 (solid light showing and the VU is showing green... for about a second, then it flashes fast yellow to tell me that it has lost TX signal...

    Has anyone used an Orange RX with a Naza-m? I simply put A-1, E-2, T-3, R-4, U-5, X1-6 and X2-7... (Naza to channel on the RX)

  13. #12
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    fast yellow eh? hmm...

    On power up, it should cycle thru the colours a few times, you getting that?

    channel assignments look ok, have you connected it to your PC? (should get solid green when connected to usb.)
    AND,
    Have you got any esc's plugged in? mine goes troppo if it hasnt got a ground on one of the motor outputs...

    double check you have the vu and the GPS plugged into the right sockets.. (I know that sounds obvious, but it has been known to happen...

    **try plugging a esc straight into the receiver, verify that the Rx is functioning.. ch3 (throttle) is probably the best one to test with. this will also double-check if you need to reverse the throttle channel. While your at it, calibrate the throttle on each esc...

    And this might sound dumb.. TAKE OFF THE PROPS until everything is perfect.. these have been know to try to leave on their own....

    keep us posted on how you're getting along...
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  14. #13
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Yup, getting the colour cycle, then through to flashing yellow. Tried to plug it into pc, lights went out completely. I don't yet have the gps... I promised myself that I would learn to fly properly before I got one. Just hope they are still making them then.

    I have all of the esc's in and motors attached. I'll give it a shot with just the one esc tomorrow. Have a feeling it is the operator that is the failure at the moment...

    Re the props, they'll go on VERY last! In fact, the way I am going I might find that it flies better with them left off entirely!
    Last edited by Wedge; 21-11-2012 at 09:11 PM.

  15. #14
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    ok...
    just one other thing...
    those three way cables (rx to naza, naza to escs..)
    signal goes to the bottom, and ground (black, usually) goes to the top..
    Double-check the VU is in X3.
    I have ch7 goung to 'U' 5 to x1 and 6 to x2, but this will depend on how you have your Tx sorted out.
    ...this shouldn't stop anything, it -should- still connect...

    are your escs all three wire? (three of mine are 1 wire..)

    and, Im assuming you've installed the 'device driver' in your PC...

    I'll be waiting for that 'DOH!!' moment...


    Good luck!
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  16. #15
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Thanks for the tips... Work has smashed me today so working on this has taken a back seat. No point getting into it with my current headspace as it is...

    I have the software installed and have registered it. The Orange rx is going to go into the "For another bird" box as my concerns about my OLD DX7 got the better of me and I decided to bite the bullet and bought a Futaba 8J. I'll keep the DX7 for my BNF gear and a trainer for my lad who seems to be showing some interest. That said, I'll be trying to get it sorted using the Orange over the weekend...

    Anyone out there know about SBUS? Is it as simple as one cord does everything? I am not understanding it methinks.... Also, how do I go about using the 8J with Phoenix?

  17. #16
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    I have the software installed and have registered it.
    there's two parts to the software. you said 'Ive registered it' which tells me you've installed the application, Naza calls that the 'assistant'.
    the second part is the 'device driver' which recognises the naza being plugged into the usb port...

    fully agree, its something you want to tackle with a clear head.
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  18. #17
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Well now... what a difference a couple of sleeps makes!

    The dog woke me up WAY too early this morning, so I decided to hook in while the family still slept. I reviewed my entire configuration for the RX and made a couple of changes, and then ended up going back to the original. Checked that my device driver was there and deleted the Naza software and reinstalled. The "normal' beeps and lights went off and I had a go at connecting it. The flashing yellow went off.... just like it had dozens of times previously. It was then replaced by a green light! Success!!

    Calibrated, worked out the secret code to turning the motors on (down and towards the center for both sticks), checked motor direction (two had to be swapped) and set my fail safe (I think). At this stage, my frustration was turning into excitement. Props on and downstairs. Motors on, throttle up, more throttle, more, more, 100% throttle! I am a tool. Back upstairs and swapped the props around. That's right, I had the CCW on the CW motors and vice versa. I guess downforce on a quadcopter is a negative thing if I want to lift off, right?

    Props switched and back downstairs. SUCCESS!!!!!! I have a quaddie that flies!

    I haven't yet finished as I will be swapping out the radio gear when the new system arrives and I can see that the software will allow for loads of tweaking to get things right.

    Thanks to all that have helped, massive props to rcroadtrain! A credit to the community.

    I'll continue to update this one as I progress.

  19. #18
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    Pics:





    RX is kinda squashed in there at the moment, but that will change soon. The VU is mounted on a Crudd mount. Really easy to see when flying!



  20. #19
    R/C Apprentice rcroadtrain is on a distinguished road rcroadtrain's Avatar
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    congratulations!

    I had success, too..
    I took my quads over to 'very nice gentleman' who helped dial in a HobbyKing V2.0 flight controller, he has had a lot of experience with those flight controllers..
    I now have two quads that fly!!

    (still prefer the Naza..)
    real trucks bend in the middle, better trucks bend more than once...

  21. #20
    R/C Novice Wedge is on a distinguished road
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    That's brilliant! I can see another in my future too, something bigger. But that'll be a while, I still have loads to learn!

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