Easy Peasy

We think the wires got many people intimidated to take up flying multicoptors but here’s all to it.

Battery (Lipo) > ESC > Flight Controller > Motors/ Receiver

Yes, it’s that simple.

ESC are Electronic Speed Controllers. It usually have one end that requires power with red and black cable.and one end with a cable that goes to the Flight Controller (FC) and depending it’s motor 1 or 2 or 3/4 you are connecting, goes to the respective port. When there are 4 motors, you will have 4 x ESC. With all 4 ESC requiring power, this is where the Power Distribution Unit (PDU) comes in. It simply takes power from one battery and sends them to all 4 ESC at once.

Flight Controllers are the likes of MultiWII, Naza, APM etc etc. Sort of the CPU of the whole multicoptor.

Motors are well, what holds the propellers.

Receiver is what you will be transmitting to with a radio/ transmitter like those from Futaba, Turnigy and the likes.

So there. A 5 mins read. Now you know, go read more and start building and flying.

Mobius to Instagram


When using mobius to record, if the video recording is set to .mov, it will not load into Instagram, crashing Instagram app, forced close the app on your phone or an error message saying “We could not proccess this video”. To make it compatible, use mp4 (H.264) instead.



No flying at F1 Singapore


SINGAPORE – There will be restrictions on the flying of unmanned aircraft when the Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix rolls into town later this week, the civil aviation regulator said on Tuesday.

This is to ensure they do not get in the way of low-level helicopter flights conducting aerial filming during the race.

The restrictions will cover a significant area around the race site including Queenstown, Telok Blangah, Toa Payoh, Kallang, Orchard, Marine Parade and Aljunied.

The islands of Sentosa and Brani will also be off-limits, said the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore.
– See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/transport/story/curbs-flying-unmanned-aircraft-during-f1-race-20140916#sthash.dYvnfxKh.dpuf


Hello Arduino, again

We got back into Adruino after reading up more and seeing that a lot of improvement from the now junk we had back in 2011. We tried out the Multiwii Pro with MTK GPS from Hobbyking.

Here’s a as-of-24-July-2014 Guide that worked for us. All version number/ information are as of writing.

It is still tedious but the information seems a little more tidy and conscience now.

Relax, Watch

Watch this in full:


If you have an hour….


Go to http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Software

Download and install the Windows driver, version 1.0.5r2 (direct link)

Download and install the MultiWII software, version 2.3 (it is 2.3pre8 as of writing in July 2014, DO NOT use 2.2) (direct link)

Download and install Drivers http://www.ftdichip.com/Drivers/CDM/CDM20814_WHQL_Certified.zip http://www.silabs.com/products/mcu/pages/usbtouartbridgevcpdrivers.aspx oh we can remember clearly even the driver step was a chore in the past! Anyway, not the point for now. Just download and install that.


Connect the board.

Start Adruino

Tools > Board > Adruino Mega 2560 or Mega ADK

Then Tools > Serial Port

Choose Open, open the MultiWII 2.3 downloaded above > MultiWII folder and select the multiwii.ino file. All the other files will be open on it’s own. Then on the right drop down list, choose config.h

Frustration Starts…

After going through almost every step, we found our motors to spin at different speeds. Like this:


So, clear EEPROM using Adruino > File > Example > EEPROM > clear_eeprom

Then Load the ones we had. The settings are below.

Define IMU

C:\Program Files (x86)\Arduino\hardware\tools\avr\bin\avr-g++ -c -g -Os -Wall -fno-exceptions -ffunction-sections -fdata-sections -mmcu=atmega2560 -DF_CPU=16000000L -MMD -DUSB_VID=null -DUSB_PID=null -DARDUINO=105 -IC:\Program Files (x86)\Arduino\hardware\arduino\cores\arduino -IC:\Program Files (x86)\Arduino\hardware\arduino\variants\mega C:\Users\ETEGRA~1\AppData\Local\Temp\build9069521682101027775.tmp\IMU.cpp -o C:\Users\ETEGRA~1\AppData\Local\Temp\build9069521682101027775.tmp\IMU.cpp.o
IMU.cpp: In function ‘void getEstimatedAttitude()’:
IMU.cpp:189: error: ‘GYRO_SCALE’ was not declared in this scope

Solution > Go back to config.h and select the FFIMUV2.

Define GPS Config – Enable GPS – http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uploads/201779733X365809X32.pdf

/***********************                  GPS                **************************/

/* GPS using a SERIAL port
if enabled, define here the Arduino Serial port number and the UART speed
note: only the RX PIN is used in case of NMEA mode, the GPS is not configured by multiwii
in NMEA mode the GPS must be configured to output GGA and RMC NMEA sentences (which is generally the default conf for most GPS devices)
at least 5Hz update rate. uncomment the first line to select the GPS serial port of the arduino */

#define GPS_SERIAL 2         // should be 2 for flyduino v2. It’s the serial port number on arduino MEGA
#define GPS_PROMINI_SERIAL   // Will Autosense if GPS is connected when ardu boots.

// avoid using 115200 baud because with 16MHz arduino the 115200 baudrate have more than 2% speed error (57600 have 0.8% error)
#define GPS_BAUD   57600

/* GPS protocol
NMEA  – Standard NMEA protocol GGA, GSA and RMC  sentences are needed
UBLOX – U-Blox binary protocol, use the ublox config file (u-blox-config.ublox.txt) from the source tree
MTK_BINARY16 and MTK_BINARY19 – MTK3329 chipset based GPS with DIYDrones binary firmware (v1.6 or v1.9)
With UBLOX and MTK_BINARY you don’t have to use GPS_FILTERING in multiwii code !!! */

#define NMEA


Enable PPM – We are using the 9XR with FrSky modules.

    /****************************    PPM Sum Reciver    ***********************************/
/* The following lines apply only for specific receiver with only one PPM sum signal, on digital PIN 2
Select the right line depending on your radio brand. Feel free to modify the order in your PPM order is different */
//#define SERIAL_SUM_PPM         PITCH,YAW,THROTTLE,ROLL,AUX1,AUX2,AUX3,AUX4,8,9,10,11 //For Graupner/Spektrum
#define SERIAL_SUM_PPM         ROLL,PITCH,THROTTLE,YAW,AUX1,AUX2,AUX3,AUX4,8,9,10,11 //For Robe/Hitec/Futaba
//#define SERIAL_SUM_PPM         ROLL,PITCH,YAW,THROTTLE,AUX1,AUX2,AUX3,AUX4,8,9,10,11 //For Multiplex
//#define SERIAL_SUM_PPM         PITCH,ROLL,THROTTLE,YAW,AUX1,AUX2,AUX3,AUX4,8,9,10,11 //For some Hitec/Sanwa/Others

// Uncommenting following line allow to connect PPM_SUM receiver to standard THROTTLE PIN on MEGA boards (eg. A8 in CRIUS AIO)

Then connect receiver to Channel 1 of the MultiWII pro. Test direction and see if they are reverse.

Immediately Calibrate ESC after this

1. Undefine that comment like you did.
2. Unpower everything and remove props.
3. plug in battery while transmitter is full throttle with transmitter on
4. quickly after hearing a beep, reduce throttle to zero
5. listen for the beeps to notify you of a successful calibration, if not start over.
6. do not unplug battery
7. plug in USB
8 put the // in front of #define ESC_CALIB_CANNOT_FLY
9 upload sketch
10 unpower everything

We are used to not have the motors spin immediately after arming and so

/* motors will not spin when the throttle command is in low position
   this is an alternative method to stop immediately the motors */
#define MOTOR_STOP

/* some radios have not a neutral point centered on 1500. can be changed here */
#define MIDRC 1500

Arming Switch

We chose to use a switch on the 9XR, specifically the AIL as arming.

Just go into the WinGUI 2.3 pre 8 > RC Control Settings > Set AUX2 High to Arm



Now we see why the Naza is so popular. MultiWII does gives you options and it’s hell a lot of options with different combinations for all your switches on your transmitter. If you want, you can certainly combine a lot to the MultiWII modes but we simply needed something vis-a-vis the Naza.

One 3 Position for:

1. GPS – Gyro, Acc, Mag On
2. Altitude Hold/ Horizon – Gyro, Acc, Baro On
3. Manual – Gyro On Only.

2 Position switch for:
a. Off
b. GPS Hold – Gyro, Acc, Mag On

2 Position switch for:
a. Off
b. GPS Return to Home – Gyro, Acc, Mag On



Our fleet continues with the Sparky.

The stuffs about Sparky is all over the place. As with many opensource flight controllers. Downloads, explanations or wikis don’t get updated or they do somewhere hidden deep in some forums.

Left the CircuDrone frame aside first and swop the KK2 from the existing RCX GF223.

Anyway, here’s what we gathered.





Problem with D4R II using PPM to Sparky like this guy…so we thought then noticed the picture he posted, his white cable from the transmitter to his Sparky is going to port “RX” while black cable is going to “0” while red cable is going to VCC. The 3.3V should not be tapped.


The white cable this way is tapping a 5V port. From there, it was smooth sailing.


Sparky allows us to “calibrate” the ESC by setting up within the Ground Control Station (GCS). This was useful as we burnt an ESC and was using a substitute 20A ones, compare to 3 x 10A till stock arrives.

Fully changed to a 4 pin plastic.

6 Sept – Updated. 10A ESC Arrived and when others tell you to leave the props off, they mean it. We left it on to just calibrate it, didnt notice the arm switch was on and the throttle was not zeroed. After calibration, the whole fram took off from the desk. hahahaa no one was hurt but it made some minor cuts on the monitor.

Before Autotune