How to Build Ultimate Budget FPV Drone Build 2021 // Beginner Guide
This is a mid range to a budget quadcopter and throughout the build i’ll, be covering everything as fast as possible and as detailed as possible and any issues you might come across in how to resolve those issues if they were to come across and what we’re building. Today is going to be a 5 inch, 6s quadcopter 6s, meaning the battery it’s going to take. It could also take 4s, and if you wanted to do a 4s build, all you have to do is choose different motors, and if you wanted cheaper motors i’ll have the cheaper stuff linked down below that performs great and i’ve been using for quite some time. I’Ve been building quadcopters for over four years now, so let’s quickly cover the components that we’re going to be using here, so for frame, we’re gon na be using an iflight frame which i’ll have linked down below. I really love this frame and the reason why we’re using this frame is because we have so many stacking options, so many 3d printed parts and on thingiverse you could find all kinds of attachments. These actually came with the frame which will protect your overall lifespan of your quadcopter, and if we take a look at the bottom here, we see we have even more 3d printed parts. All of these things did come in the box and we even have a receiver holder here which will hold the receiver in a really nice position and we could route the antennas through those plastic pieces which also came with the package here now for video transmitter we’re Going to be using a rush, video transmitter – these are some of the best ones out in the market.
You can get cheaper ones, however, these are really really great and highly recommended by most of the community. I’Ll have some link down below and some cheaper as well that i’ve been using so just in case your budget does not allow for camera we’re using the t rex from fox here. I haven’t used this just yet. I didn’t always test it. I don’t remember the latency on it, but i just had this laying around next to me and it’s going to be really great. We could test it out in the field. Theoretically, this should have some really great video quality and we’ll get to see that once we take it out flying now for stack, which is the esc and the flight controller, when they come together, you call them a stack now. What i went with here is one of the best budget alternatives you could possibly get because, in my opinion, the most crucial part of your quadcopter is the electronic speed controller, which is this guy right here, which we’ll be taking a closer look at in a bit. Here so this is a mamba stack, as you can tell, the packaging is pretty freaking awesome here uh. This is an f405 mk3 light edition, so don’t, let the light fool you. It still packs a 9 volt osd everything you ever want in a flight controller. Basically, you have everything here, so that’s going to be really great and the reason a lot of people are going with stacks is because it makes the connection between the flight controller and esc much simpler, with just one wire and you’re good to go here.
So if we put this down some other things, we’re going to need is just some tape. Also a hex driver kit i’ll. I really like this. I actually have it linked down below it comes with every single hex driver. You probably ever want here just interchangeable and it takes less space in your bag and also some wire cutters. If you have and a soldering iron that’s, really it that’s all. We really need to actually build this guy, and maybe if you could get some of these braided wires, you could actually pick some up for very cheap uh. You could probably do a ton of quals with these um i’ve done already like five, and i still have this much left here, which i’ll have this also linked down below it’s pretty cheap, as you can tell it keeps the overall build very nice and clean, and At same times, it does sort of protect your motors, which is really important, because if these cross it could burn an esc and you kind of don’t want that. So before we get started, everything here is linked down below and let’s go ahead and go to the first step. So the first step. What i always recommend doing is connecting everything to your flight control. That needs to be connected, for example, our camera, video transmitter and also our receiver. So we get that stuff out of the way. Then we can put this to the side and then work on the frame in the esc.
So let’s go ahead and take a look at which pads we need and let’s go ahead and start preparing them. So it accidentally ripped with me here, but if we put them next to each other, what we can see is we have cam ground five volt, which are going to be those three up there. So let’s go ahead and just prepare those together really quickly. So we saw it was these three, so we’re just going to go ahead and prepare them and don’t be scared to keep the soldering iron uh longer on the board. It’S! Okay, as you can tell we bridged, which is really nice. So i could show you how to fix that bridge so uh, all you have to do. Is we have good solder? Hopefully just go like this and move down. Go like this move down clean the tip and then just do the same thing again. So don’t worry about it and don’t stress it too much there we go and if you have flux, that’ll even help even better. So here we go, we just cleaned it up. So let’s just have a closer look here. Hopefully, you guys can see that so it’s great that that just happened, so you guys could see how to fix it. So just take it easy, just keep pulling down cleaning the tip and you’ll be good to go. So now, if we take a closer look here, we want to do the receiver part.
Now the receiver part might be a bit tricky, because this is an f4 and we’re running an s. Bus fr sky receiver, so we’re gon na have to do is we’re gon na have to take ground from here five volt from here, so we have ground five volt and we’re gon na have to take this one right here s bus. Now, if you had anything else, such as uh let’s just say a tbs crossfire you’d want to put them on these two right here and if you had a ibus from flysky, then you’re going to want to put it on this r1. So just keep that in mind. This is also an r1, but it’s inverted for fr sky. So just keep that in mind. So we’re going to solder to this one and just give it the power from here so let’s go ahead and set that up as well. We said we needed this pad right here, so we’ll just set that up, then this next pad right here and the middle one. So i don’t want to touch that component so i’m, just going to flip it over and just add a little solder like that. So now we have our receiver part, pretty much ready to go. We’Ll start soldering it soon. Next let’s go ahead and see where our video transmitter is actually so. This concept works on every other flight controller as well. So just look at the documentation and you’ll figure.
It out here we see we have nine volt ground and we need that vtx and also tx3. The tx3 here will allow you, if your video transmitter is capable, will allow you to change channels and output power through your goggles. Instead of having to go and press the button on the video transmitter, so if we align it correctly, it’s going to be these right there, so let’s go ahead and do those, as you can tell i’m, just putting the soldering iron right on the pad and then Bringing in the solder i put it on the pad make sure it heats up a little ground pads are going to be always a bit more difficult and you’re going to have to hold a little bit longer, as you saw that last pad right there with the Second pad down where we had to do that, and just like that: we’ve completely added solder, really great and basically with the flight control that’s, it we’re just going to go ahead and slot up the wires now and we’ll be done. It’S really that simple! So so we’re going to go ahead and start with the camera and, as you can tell here’s the camera ground and 5 volt, which are those right there which are going to be these three right here now, if you’re right handed, i always recommend you start from The left side and move to the right and if you’re left handed start from the left right side and move to the left, because it just makes it easier to move that way.
So let’s go ahead and start with it’s going to be camera ground, five volts. So we have our camera wire here, i’m going to remove the paper, so we get better exposure here all right, so we said it was going to be camera, so we’re going to go ahead and set the camera wire, which is the yellow wire, always from your Camera, if you have the wire that came with the camera, hopefully you do and next is going to be ground, so we’re going to go ahead and grab ground and what i’m going to do is i like to lay the wire on the pad first and then Just come in with the soldering iron and just push it down nice and gently. These pads are a bit close to each other, but if you’re just patient enough, you can do it. I don’t think you will need uh tweezers, but depending on your skills, you might need some tweezers. So there we go all right, so we’re just going to double check. That looks great, not the best. So just like that, we have them into place. I can do a better job, but this is going to do just fine, so we have camera ground. Five volt ground is always black, five volts, always red or power, and then yellow is always the video. So let’s go ahead and move on to the receiver. Now. So here we have the receiver and looking at the documentation.
The first pad over here is going to be ground, so let’s go ahead and set that up so it’s going to be ground here and i could have shortened up the wire slightly. Oh, you always want to hold ground a little bit more with the soldering iron, because usually the ground plane is all over the flight controller or any board, and it acts like a heat sink. So the heat dissipates and it takes a bit more heat to actually heat up that pad correctly so i’m, just shortening the tip of the wires here. So the next one down was going to be 5 volts because our receiver takes 5 volts here all right there. We go and that pad right there is going to be our s, bus, which is this one right here. So i want to make sure i don’t touch anything or burn anything. So here’s s, bus, just double check all right, so it’s really far away from me. Okay, and now we have all of them into place, so now we have our receiver connected. We also have our camera connected. What’S left is our video transmitter and it’s right here and it’s going to go on this side right there. So let’s go ahead and start on that all right. So looking at the documentation, our first one is called vtx, which is going to be for the video, so let’s go ahead and set that up, which is usually the yellow wire, almost always the yellow wire.
On your video transmitter, the next one is going to be tx3. You don’t have to connect this, but for mine i know it’s going to be the blue one here, so we’re going to go ahead and set that up, which is called data on rush fpv. For some reason i don’t know if all of them say that just double check we didn’t bridge nope, no bridging next one over is going to be ground, ground’s, always black, and we have to hold it a little bit longer. Okay and the last one obviously should be 9 volts. So if you always get, if you ever get a flight controller with 9 volts, that’s really nice, because your video transmitter will love you for that, and it also reduces the chances of you having some sort of weird lines: uh from the noise coming from the esc. So, overall it gives you better video feed. So now like this, our flight controller is complete and we can actually move it to the side because we don’t need it till the last part where we just plug it into the esc. So now we’re going to go ahead and get started on the esc and the motors here now. The first thing what i really like with this frame. It has this cut out and it has in mind that you’re going to be putting a low, esr capacitor, which is what we’re doing here and especially with the stack we also do, have the holes and the low esr capacitor provided for us.
So here what we can see is this is the negative side of the capacitor and it’s going to go to the minus sign here and the side that doesn’t have anything will go to the positive now, if we put this in correctly just like that, and we Solder that into place we can see that that’s not going anywhere and another thing to keep in mind. Is you do not want these touching the carbon fiber, because if they do your short circuit and you can fry your whole thing so just be very, very careful. So right now what i’m going to do is i’m, just going to so i’m going to put down the flight control and just let gravity hold it into place right there. So i could add a bit of solder and, as you can tell this pad right here, i’ve been using for about two years now: it’s a silicone pad, so it doesn’t burn, as you can tell you could just solder, basically anything on top of this, and not Really worry about anything, so we’re going to go ahead and just add a little bit of solder here. So this is the ground pad, especially on esc’s that are really good you’re going to have to keep that soldering iron on there for quite long time. Uh, for example, right now i have my soldering station set to 420 to 440 degrees. Uh celsius, as you can tell the tip, is also going black pretty quickly but that’s, okay right now, so there we go and we’ll trim those off later on.
So now like this, we have our capacitor installed so i’m, just going to trim some of these off really quickly, all right, so let’s go ahead and test the fitment now so here we go, and this is the back side yep there we go really nice. Nothing is going to touch since it held into place just fine, now you’re like oh what about down here. If we install the video transmitter, we’ll already check that so we’re not going to have any uh problem setting that up, we have a ton of clearance right there, so we’re good. We can go on any level here. This is another reason why i like this frame. As well, so if you don’t have a silicone pad just place it into your frame right here, the esc and we’re gon na go ahead and just prepare the pads right now so let’s go ahead and do that together. I’Ll probably do a couple together and then skip over the rest, so what you want to do first, obviously, is you want to hold or make sure your tip is as shiny as possible and um? I recommend around 380 degrees celsius that’s what i usually prefer so i’m just going to drop the temperature down slightly now. So the first thing you want to do is you want to bring your soldering iron and just heat up the pad just like that and then just drop in some solder and wait for it to stick, and that seems good.
There we go. We have our first one we’re going to do the same thing: we’re going to heat up the pad and i’m constantly making contact and i’m, not making contact with the tip i’m, making contact with the side of the soldering iron from the bottom side like that. So i’m trying to put as much of the soldering iron tip on those pads in order to heat them up properly. So, as you can tell just like that – and that looks nice – maybe a little bit more just to make sure it’s good all right, that’s great we’ll, do three more then i’ll skip over the rest because i’m going to have to go. Look for some solder because i already had a solder, and i really hope i have some because i don’t want to drive anywhere now and go buy some okay, all right. All right last pad here same same concept: okay, don’t, be afraid to keep the soldering tip on it for very long, and also when you’re coming off of the esc, make sure you don’t go over the motor, because if you had a solder that dropped in there, Your thing your motor is going to fry, it might fry your esc and you would never know why, and you would just say: oh it’s, a piece of crap, esc and all kinds of things so just be very careful when you’re doing this, so yeah always just Make sure that you’re not about to drop anything on any other component when you’re soldering, because that could ruin it pretty badly.
So i guess here we did everything together now and just like that we have a beautiful esc, now make sure not to touch it because it’s going to be hot as hell um but yeah there we go. So we can kind of get an idea. How clean that was, and also something to take into consideration now you also have to put this in correctly, so every esc will have numbers on there, one two three and four, and if we grab a closer look here, we see we have one here two here: Three here and four here now, if you never know, if you have to memorize this or you don’t really have to just go, google, it find the back of your quadcopter. For me, this is the back here. That’S the front and one is always on the back right motor and if we place it in like that, then i should be like one two and then it goes to uh three. Oh sorry, one two three and four. So one two three four always number one back right motor all right, so let me go ahead and prepare the xt60 for us to solder into place. This is probably the most annoying part and one of the hardest parts of a quadcopter build. Now, what we’re going to do is we’re going to solder the xc60 into the esc. Now this could be the most difficult part, depending on how your setup is, and maybe we should not have put the capacitor in just yet, but we’re.
Just gon na have to live with that. So the red wire is gon na go to the plus sign and the black wire is gon na go to the minus, which is the ground. So let’s go ahead and set this up so right now, i’m kind of lucky to where this kind of just holds into place. Right here and we could kind of add solder, i would have preferred to have a complete pad instead of this cut out, because this kind of makes things a little bit more difficult. So, but we just take it one step at a time we should have. We should be fine here, maybe if you have some tweezers, probably a good time to bring those as well so what i’m going to do now is, i have it laid right there so i’m, just going to just slowly apply some pressure and some solder between the Wire and the soldering tip, and that should allow the heat to transfer nicely there. We go and now we’re definitely going to need a tweezer. But i just want to put enough solder there to kind of get me going just to at least hold temporarily until we come up with the best technique for this. So i can see that the wire is melting or the solder on the wire is melting. But the pad isn’t doing so well, just yet because we didn’t add solder on the pad. So here we go let’s just come in from the corner, just hold it on the pad.
Add some solder just wait for it to stick all right. There we go and then we’re just going to treat it once we’re done so we’re going to do the same thing from this side. Now: it’s! Okay, if your wire and the solder bridges between the capacitor and this wire is totally acceptable because anyways they are connected inside the board. Here there we go, and that looks pretty nice, so let’s just double check that and you don’t want to put too much because, if you’re putting a lot and it looks like it’s disappearing, that means it’s falling on the bottom. So you have to be very careful that when it falls through the bottom, it doesn’t really touch anything, and actually that came out really really nice. I really like how that came out. The board is hot, as hell, so just be careful, so just making sure that’s the positive side and make sure this is the negative side. So if you put the capacitor in backwards it’ll blow in your face, so yeah just keep that in mind and try to try to avoid that. So this time, what i’m going to do is i’m going to add a bit of solder on the pads, because again the ground is the most difficult one. So i hold, i highly recommend you try out the positive side first, because it’ll be slightly easier than the ground and should make your life a little bit easier or you can at least practice your execution for the next one.
So you have a better idea, because the worst thing is to go and try to do the harder one first and there will be a huge difference in the amount of time and heat you’ll need to solder in the ground side. So let’s go ahead and figure. This out here there we go and now, if we’re, unable to as you can tell melt, the wire it’s, always recommended to add a bit of solder, as you can tell my tip, went kind of black is because i’ve increased the temperature to 440 degrees celsius, because These wires are thick and these wires act as a heat sink, so the whole wire needs to get hot it’s, actually uh, just absorbing all that heat and dissipating it throughout the wire. This is a good time for a there. We go so that looked like it came out. Pretty well, hopefully wait until we see the other side and we should not have put the capacitor um first so, but i guess it’s, okay, so that actually came out pretty nice i’m. Actually quite happy with that. Yeah that’s pretty hot, so that came out pretty clean i’m. Okay, with that shiny, beautiful and uh, it was on there for quite some time, so yeah always increase the temperature, and once you do that, you will have a really ugly tip and just lower the temperature back down to 350 degrees celsius. That’S. If you are using leaded solder like i am, and most people do actually like to stick at and just uh keep adding solder on the tip, because you don’t want to ruin the tip, but you could always buy tips for your soldering iron there.
We go all right so now, we’re, basically ready. All we need to do is start connecting up the motors to this. So let me prepare everything and we’ll be right back all right. So now i’ve gone ahead and prepared and cut up the wires, because that would have just taken ages to show you so i’ve just cut up the wires and we’re gon na go ahead and start soldering the motor wires into place here. We’Ll do a couple together and then i’ll skip over the rest or just uh. Have that just go a little bit quicker, so let’s go ahead and grab our first wire now now the best way to execute this again, if you’re right handed from the left to the right and if you’re left handed from the right to the left and you’ll See why here so, i just want to make sure they’re all going to reach so we’re going to grab our first wire, it doesn’t matter which wire goes where because we’re going to go ahead and change that in the software later. So what we want to do. First, here is heat up the pad that’s. What i like to do, just heat up the pad, make sure it’s, melted and then bring the wire you don’t have to go so quick and then just hold the soldering iron right on top of the wire and just wait for it to go down and it’ll. Eventually go down and if it’s not going down, increase the temperature.
I have my temperature at ‘0 right now and you should definitely use tweezers, because the wire gets really hot very quickly. So i’m gon na go ahead and grab tweezers now and same concept. I’M gon na hit up the pad and i’m gon na go ahead and just bring in my wire and there we go now make sure you don’t let go because if you let go and the solder just sprays everywhere, while it’s melted, uh that’s pretty bad. Actually, you could ruin your whole esc and uh pretty difficult to clean up unless you take it to like a phone repair shop or something or a pc repair shop, and have them do that so again, heating up the pad, bring the wire. You hear a beautiful crunching sound. Maybe you could hear that i don’t know and bam not the best job right now, but i’ll come back and touch this because the the quadcopter is very far away from me and um yeah. So let’s hope this one will reach. So this might have to have to do this by hand. I’Ll probably cut this a bit too short here see this one. Probably do this one here, so let’s go ahead and do this ones together. I cut them a little bit too short, but it’s. Okay, nothing! We can’t fix so here we go heat up the pad and you have to be careful. Some esc’s pads uh have holes to the other side and the solder might actually be disappearing to the other side there.
So just keep that in mind as well and again i twisted the wires and also added solder on them before i started this step here so i’m, just gon na bend this like that. Just to make my life a little bit easier and you should always keep your tip nice and shiny, not like mine, but we’re. Just gon na go ahead and execute this, and now the last one there we go and beautiful. So we have one side done and basically like that guys, we’re kind of done really all we have to do is just put everything together now, just like a lego puzzle now, with this flight controller, just keep in mind uh this right here it has to go Into specific areas has an arrow: this side should go to the flight controller or else you’ll burn it, because the power would probably be inverted, so be careful with that. Not all stacks have this, but when they do uh, you don’t want to lose this so make sure you keep that there, so you don’t fry it by accident one day when you’re taking it apart and you put the wrong side in the next thing. You know you could say bye bye to everything here, so what i’m gon na go do now? Is i’m gon na go ahead and look for some standoffs, because the current metal screws are not long enough with this frame um because it’s a pretty thick frame here.
So give me a moment and i’ll be back all right, guys so we’re almost complete here i had to do a couple things, so i couldn’t find the right standoff. So i did go order some right now, as you can tell the bottom uh these ones right here are squished, but that doesn’t really matter, because this is just for the esc. What really matters is the one for the flight controller. These are slightly squished, let’s, actually zoom out a little bit. Hopefully you guys could see that, but that’s going to be okay temporarily until i receive them which i’ll receive them tomorrow and fix that up uh. The problem was, is i didn’t have long enough screws and i lost the original screws that came with the frame because it’s been sitting next to me for a while. Also, another thing i had to do was remove the wires for the video transmitter because it wasn’t long enough, so i just ran my own uh wires into that it’s, the same connection process, but just longer wires and i’m. Just gon na put some uh nuts here and a lot of nuts to hold the video transmitter into place and you can see the mmcx which is right here: uh, that’s, what’s, really nice, with these video transmitters. They come with these mmc x’s, and this frame also comes with this 3d printed part that will allow it to hold right into place with screws. So you kind of see where the screws m2 screws will just go in there.
So now all we have to do is just connect the camera and um that’s, really it and then we can power this guy on and in the next video. I will show you how to set everything up um for just about any quadcopter i’ll, give you the exact setup process, but meanwhile, i’ll have a link to one down below which will also show you everything you need to know because it’s, just generic. Basically, you just have to know a couple things in order to uh set up a quadcopter like where you’ve connected your receiver, where you connect your radio transmitter and that’s about it. So i’m gon na go ahead and put in the screws and we’ll take one. Last, look at this guy all right, so let’s go ahead and take a look at how this thing came out to be so, as you can tell the stack barely fit, and that shouldn’t be the case again only if i had longer uh m3 screws, which i Did order – and i should receive tomorrow – we’ll change that out so we’ll see in the next video and also, as you can tell the uh the battery lead. I had it coming out from the back. So luckily, the provided xt60 that came with this stack was just long enough here, which should hold it into place. However, if it’s not long enough, i also had this next, in which i 3d print from thingiverse, and these would actually go to the standoff like that, and you could just route your xd60 through that and it’ll hold it into place here.
Wherever you’d want yours to go and they usually do a pretty good job, so i really like these also that’s. What had it next to me so and again, the protectors here, you’re supposed to put these on before you put the motor screws uh, but we’ll do that in the next video it doesn’t really matter right now, so you can tell you would put these on and These would extend the lifespan of your frame overall, especially with the bottom pieces. So when you keep landing especially on concrete, then you would be good to go there and um yeah. It came out really nice. I really love this so let’s go ahead and get its weight all right moment of truth and it’s on zero. Put this guy in so 371 grams it’s a pretty heavy one, but it is a freestyle quad. So you can add your propellers and your battery and also a gopro if you had a gopro, also and probably a video transmitter antenna to that and you get the uh estimated weight we should say so. It is a really nice build very thick arms. I can’t wait to take this out and try out these amax motors because everybody’s speaking so highly of so i’m really excited for that and we’ll take one last look at this guy just so you kind of get an idea of how everything came together. So here we’re just taking a look at it, because i know some people really want to see how this came out to be, and it looks really sick in real life.
Um can’t wait to go test this out. I do have a client to go shoot for, and hopefully they’ll. Allow me to show you guys the footage and we’ll see how well this flew over there. Well. First of all, i have to test it before i go there with this one, but overall stay tuned and the video will be coming up very shortly of how i go about setting this up through betaflight and everything else you might want to know. So everything is linked down below make sure you check the links down below and also i’m selling this. So if anybody wants it, i’ll be selling in about two weeks time um. So let me know email me, so i reserve it for you and well come join.