Some common questions New pilots ask

Most common type questions we get asked by new pilots coming into the hobby.
Hopefully some of the answers will help you.

Q. What type of quad should I buy?  
A. All depends on what you plan to do with that quad.
Do you plan to race with it?
Do you plan to use it as a stable aerial video platform?
Do you want a beat em up practice quad?

Once you know which area(s) you want to go then you can decide on the type of frame or RTF (Ready To Fly) to buy.

Q. Should I build it myself or buy one ready to fly out of the box?
A. If your objective is to get into the air as quick as possible then perhaps a RTF quad is the way to go.
However, if you want to get a good understanding of how all the parts work together then build one yourself. For most of us, building the quad is just as rewarding as actually flying it, it also enables you to do repairs yourself either in the field or on your bench, as you will have a much better understanding of how it all goes together.

Q. If I build one myself, what parts do I need to make it fly?
A. Obviously you will need a frame, motors, esc’s, PDB, battery, Radio, radio receiver, props, if you want to Fly FPV you will also need a FPV Cam and VTX and VTX antenna, Monitor or preferably FPV Goggles.

You will also need a Soldering iron (adjustable temperature), hex drivers, small hand tools like side cutters, small screwdrivers (jewellers screwdrivers are always handy), a small modellers knife, Heat shrink tubing, double sided tape, cable ties.

Also having even a basic understanding of electronics and how to assemble something logically would be very advantageous.

Q . I have decided to build a race quad, which is the best frame to get?
A. That is the 64 million dollar question.  In my view, there is no single “best” frame to get.
The reality is, most frames of similar size and spec pretty much fly the same.
Examples: QAV-R, Alien, Martian, ZMR-X210 are very similar in design and for the most part will fly pretty much the same.
Believe it or not a lot of frames we buy are often purchased on how cool they look as well as how strong they appear.

But, when it comes down to it, if you are a FPV flyer you never see your cool looking frame when you fly.  It all boils down to how well that particular frame fly’s for YOU.

You need to set yourself a budget. What can you afford? What areas are you prepared to spend more on than others?

If just starting off in the world of Racers buy a frame that is durable and of average price, the humble ZMR 250 is great value for money and has been around for ages. Honestly, shop around.  Try and stay clear of over complicated looking frames with fancy canopies and the like.

Q.  What are the best motors to get for my racer?
A. The ones you can honestly afford, and always buy 1 or 2 spares.
But the term “Best” motors means different things to different people. Some say the Emax 2205-2300’s are the Best, some say the Cobras are Best or the DYS SE2205’s etc. etc. again, this is something that boils down to you the individual.
Ask yourself. Am I good enough to know that a really expensive motor is better for me than a middle of the road motor is?  The answer is probably not.

Far too easy to get sucked into the “OMG the POWAH, OHHH I MUST HAVE” comments from others, The chance are the people who say these things are ones who have been there done that and really do know what a good motor feels like.
As a newbie I do advise you start with affordable motors that have a good reputation before you splurge on expensive motors.

Q. So many ESC’s around which ones do I need?
A.  Pretty much any 20-amp esc with Blheli will do the job fine.
As your aim is to build a quad and get airborne ASAP and to learn how to fly and practice practice practice I doubt you will exceed the 20-amp esc’s capabilities anytime soon.

Q.  I have read that I need a PDB, what is that and why do I need one?
A.  A PDB (Power Distribution Board) is pretty much the heart of the quad; it is what provides all the power to the Flight Controller, ESC’s, VTX, FPV Cam, Receiver, and LEDs.  Buy a good one. Plenty of good ones out there, Demon Core, QuadRevo etc. are excellent PDB’s. Avoid really cheap and nasty ones, you will regret it.

Q. Do I need an LC Filter?
A.  Short answer is do not NEED, but long answer is, advisable to have as it can protect your VTX and FPV cam and help eliminate lines in your video.
But, good news, if you buy a good PDB they have LC filters  built in. 

Big Grin

Q. Should I go 3S or 4S ?
A. Just go 4S right from the get go. The quad will only fly as fast or as slow as your want it to go, 4S offers you a lot more “punch out” power than 3S.

Now of course there are some frames, motor, esc’ combos that can’t take 4S, but generally speaking any 180 upwards sized frame motor combo can handle 4S.  But do check esc’, motors ratings first.

Q. What is the best Radio to buy?
A. Again, this is one of those 64 million dollar questions. The radio is one of the biggest and most important pieces of RC equipment you will buy. Buy a good one and it will last you ages and cover so many models.
Boils down to cost again. But a proven, reliable Radio is the Taranis and at a reasonable price point, Not the easiest Radio to master setting up, but there are plenty of members here who are Masters of the Taranis.
Bottom line is..Buy good, buy once.

Q. I am confused about the VTX and it connections etc., and do I need RHCP or LHCP?
A. VTX and antenna come in SMA and RPSMA, Whatever standard you choose you must always make sure the VTX and antenna are the same.
One of the most common questions asked is “the range on my video is crap, why?  The simple answer is that you have mismatched the connectors.
As for RHCP and LHCP, again, make sure the TX and RX are of the same standard, either both are LHCP or both RHCP.

Q. What is the best Flight Controller to get?
A. As a new pilot to the world, make it easy; get a cheap Naze acro board or a F3 board like a Cyclone, SPracing, Xracer F303. Pretty easy to setup and for the most part, reliable.

Q.  1 or 2 of my motors are getting really hot even after just 1 or 2 minutes in the air, any ideas?
A. Yes, most of the time the screws used to secure the motors to the arms are just a little too long and they are touching the windings.

Q. I cannot connect to Clean Flight, why?
A. Often it is a USB driver issue, sometimes the Baud rate you have set is too high.

There are a lot more questions that are being asked all the time and the list could go on, but it is strongly suggested that you do your own research by using google, weighing up what you believe is right for your specific needs and wants.

Everyone single one of us has been there done that and continue to learn.

By all means continue to ask questions, seek advice , often you will find only partial answers to the questions you have, as often those of us that have been in the hobby for a while often overlook the basics which is second nature to us but all so confusing to the new pilot.  The more you learn by your own mistakes the better you will come to terms with this ever changing hobby.

Mepsking FPV Forum, where you can learn everything about drone and flying skills. Check mepsking store if you want to buy drone parts.


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