First Flight: Spider

The "Spider" 250 quad and my regular RS352

The “Spider” 250 quad and my regular RS352

The weather was perfect this week and I managed to successfully test my 250 size “Spider” quadcopter for the first time. I had spun the motors up indoors the night before just to make sure it had the power to hover, but this was the first test flight.

I managed to get in five flights with the quad and one with the RS352 this week, as the quad is running on 1100mAh LiPos while the RS352 uses 1300mAh ones, so I had five packs to use, plus a field charge for the final quad flight. The weather was perfect, bright and sunny with no wind and not as cold as I was expecting. As far as test flights go, this was almost perfect, with the only real problem being that the plastic legs kept falling off. There does seem to be a bit of an issue with the armed setting for the throttle though. I had reduced it a bit following the pre-flight tests, but it still spins the rotors to the extent that you occasionally had to diasarm just to keep it on the ground. It seemed a bit unpredictable though. A bigger problem might be that on the final flight I saw the right rear rotor stop, with the effect that the quad tipped over and landed upside down. Luckily I was hovering just a foot off the ground when it happened, so no damage was done. When I tried to spin the rotors up to check, this motor was refusing to run properly, so I might be looking at a new motor or speed controller, or maybe it was just the BEC cutting in for that motor? Other than that, after getting over the “it’s tiny, completely unstable, too sensitive and which way is it pointing?” phase on the first flight, I was then able to zoom it around and test out some speed runs with left and right corrections in preparation for racing through gates.

In addition to this, there were a number of other people flying this week. The French DH Beaver (white) was there, along with two younger guys who I see occasionally who were flying a small P47D when I arrived. The P47D went really well and was extremely aerobatic, so I must find out who makes it. They also had a FunJet, a profile foam aircraft and a DJI 450 quad which I was interested to see flying. Talking to him, he also ignored the instructions and put the long centre piece front to back instead of left to right as the instructions say. Watching it fly, I hope our one is as stable and controllable as his is. The last one to arrive was the guy with the FlyBaby and a Corsair. The Corsair had a problem with the rudder direction being wrong, so, with it also using a gyro stabilisation system, it couldn’t fly. Finally, after everyone but me had left, some other people turned up with a couple of small children and a white foam Cessna type trainer. They had some problems getting the throttle to work, but it appeared to have fixed itself just as I was having to leave. I saw it in the air, so it obviously got away from the ground OK.

UPDATE: It took me 2 seconds to figure out why the quadcopter motor won’t work – a motor wire has come loose, so I hope it’s just a case of soldering. I was a bit worried because I swapped the case on this motor to turn a CCW into a CW thread. In the back of my mind I was expecting a physical failure in the rear bearings, but it’s fine. Expect a post later about MT1806 motors because I’ve had no end of problems with them.

The DJI F450

The DJI F450

Spidey and the RS352

Spidey and the RS352

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