From kids to adults who wish to get into electronics, aviation, or some of the more serious drone/aero business, people of all ages get attracted to this field. Drones are just like a dream come true for every child and adult. DIY drone kits’ increased popularity andthe fan base is full of people committed to building their own drones.
But if you are a beginner and have just stepped into this hobby, how would you know about the best drones for you and your specific purpose? If you are going to invest, you must do the right thing. Before buying your first drone kit, you need to make sure that you have the following three key features tested on the list:
1. Status Of Law
The first and most important thing you need to look at and consider before you make a drone is whether it is legal in your area or not. While many places in countries, such as the US and Canada, have explicit legal requirements for drone use, a few areas may require you to have a special license or permit for types that will allow you to build or operate a drone.
2. Drone Type
Drones come in a variety of shapes and sizes. You will three types of drones on the market, i.e., Ready to Fly (RTF), Almost Ready to Fly (ARF), and Bind and Fly (BNF). RTF drones are for people who need a toy or drone that flies immediately after purchase. DIY lovers and Hobbyists would love the ARF drone as it requires proper assembly before flying. BNF drones are another option where you do not need much assembly work. A simple transistor installation is all you need, and you might be good to go.
The third thing to look for in a drone is the level of accessories the company offers you. A few examples would be additional tools, memory cards, etc. These things are added to help you build or do more with your drone.
Apart from these three things, there are many other things you need to consider before buying a DIY drone kit. As a start, you may want to know more about the basic nuts and bolts of this area. Make sure to check out for these more details that may look minor, but they have their own importance.
Things You Must Have to Build Your Own Drone
If you are not a ‘ready to use drone’ kind of person, and you want to make your own drone according to your needs, there are some important things that you might need. As most of the drones are quadcopter, here are a few basic things that are required:
Every quadcopter or other multi-rotor aircraft needs a frame to fit all other items. The things to consider here are the weight, size, and materials. The highly recommended ones are the DJI Flame Wheel F450 or one of the many clones. These are large quadcopter frames.
They are sturdy, lightweight, and have sensible configurations, including a built-in power supply board (PDB) that allows for clean and easy construction. There are also a ton of storage parts and accessories available on many different websites. You can find tons of clones out there, most of which include the same built-in PDB and durable construction as before. Parts and accessories are 100% compatible and interchangeable.
Motors have a clear purpose: spinning the propellers. There are many different motors available on the market that are quite suitable for a quadcopter. You should not shoot for the cheapest motors and not break the bank by buying the expensive ones while there are many efficient motors available on the market at a budget price.
Motors are rated in kilovolts, and when the kV rate rises, the speed due to the spins of the motor will also increase. When you buy a motor, most websites will indicate how many ESC amps you are pairing with and what propeller size you should use. We found that the 1000kV motor is a good size for starters.
3. Electronic Speed Controller
Electronic speed control, or ESC, is responsible for telling the motors how fast they have to spin at any given time. Four ESCs are required per quadcopter. ESCs are then connected directly to the battery through a wiring harness or power distribution board. Usually, ESCs come with a built-in battery circuit (BEC), which allows you to power things like your flight-control board and radio receiver without plugging in directly into the battery.
Because the motors in a quadcopter must rotate at the right speed to have an accurate flight, the ESCsare very important. If you are building a quadcopter or other multi-rotor, it is best to use ESCs with SimonK firmware in them. This firmware modifies the ESC refresh rate, so the motors receive more commands per second from the ESC, thus having greater control over the behavior of the quadcopter. Many companies sell ESCs with SimonK firmware already installed.
4. Flight Controller
The flight control board is considered the ‘brain’ of the quadcopter. It incorporates sensors like gyroscopes and accelerometers that determine the speed of spins of each quadcopter motor. Flight control boards control the flights range from the simplest to the most complex. The best flight control board for the ones who are first-time quadcopter builders is the HobbyKing KK2.0. It is not so expensive, easy to set up, and has strong performance. It can work with almost any type of aircraft. So, if you later want to upgrade to a hex copter or try a tricopter, you don’t need to buy another board.
5. Radio Transmitter and Receiver
The transmitter and receiver allow you to control the quadcopter. You need at least four basic quadcopter channels and a KK2.0 control board. Using an 8-channel radio is recommended as there is a lot of flexibility in other drones that may require more channels. The Turnigy9x is an excellent choice as it is not expensive and provides an excellent performance.
There is also a 9x user community available for your help, which makes troubleshooting easier. If you face any problem with setting up your control board or anything else, experts in various drone forums like RC-groups will help you through this.
There are four propellers in a quadcopter. Two “normal” clocks are rotating clockwise, and two rotating “pushers” are rotating clockwise. Pusher propellers are usually labeled ‘R’ after size. The most common ones are 9x 4.7 props. This is a good size for the motors and ESCs.
7. Battery and Battery Chargers
Last but not least are the Battery and a Battery Charger. Usually, LiPo batteries are used in drones, and three cells of 3S1P batteries are connected. Charging them is a little complicated as you have to charge and discharge them at the same rate.
If you like to get your hands dirty and learn about technical things, DIY drone kits are the best option. You can make a customized drone according to your requirements and budget and use it for several things, such as photography or videography. On the other hand, if you want to buy the best ready-to-fly drone, many companies make the best ones, such as DJI.
Starting with DIY drone kits will help you gain experience and prepare you to smoothly use professional and high-end drones.