07/19/2017 at 22:04 •
This will likely be the last project log prior to the end of the Wings Wheels and Walkers contest. The hardware is pretty much ready for a spin up test, and depending on how that goes, Ill fit the flight controller and try a flight test. However it has been exceedingly hot outside here lately, and I dont feel comfortable testing this inside, so I'm not sure Ill be able to test it before the 24th.
I will get a video put together today or tomorrow, explaining the mechanism (at least as well as I can) and point out a few things that still need worked on.
Anyway, good luck to all entries in the Hackaday Prize :)
06/20/2017 at 04:06 •
Apologies again for the long overdue update. Some significant assembly progress is being made, but NAVI still is not ready for a flight test quite yet.
Things left to do is get another set of 2.5mm linkage balls (ordered but shipping from China >.<), design an avionics and battery mounting plate, assemble the rest of the cable harness, and configure the flight controller. Below is a picture of the project as it currently sits, however. Cheers :)
05/10/2017 at 18:08 •
Sorry for the lack of updates everyone. I figured since Hackaday just featured me (massive thanks! :D), I should give a bit of an update as to what's going on. Admittedly, progress slowed to a near stand still for a short time, here's why:
So, swashplate linkages. These linkages are one of the most critical components for making this build work. I tried and tried, multiple iterations, designs, and permutations, to make 3d printable versions of these. While I *believe* its possible, it will take a lot more work. For the time being, in order to hopefully get a test flight in by the Wheels, Wings, and Walkers contest that Ill be entering in, I've ordered TREX Helicopter brand linkages and balls. These are proven reliable and smooth, and should be more than adequate for NAVI. I'm now just waiting for those to show up, ETA is Monday or Tuesday (5/15, 5/16)
Once I have those in hand, all that's left is to mount them up and adjust them. After that, print the avionics and battery sled to hold those in place, and a temporary 'tripod' landing gear, so I dont have to have my hands near the blades during the trial take-offs/landings. Thats about it, and we'll be ready for a test flight!
Assuming the test flight goes according to plan: Any tweaks that need made to improve performance will be made, and then I will print the shell, mount the cameras (yes, thats plural, more on that later ;) ) At that point, NAVI Mk1 will be considered "Completed." (A project like this is never truly done...)
What happens after that? Well I have a couple other highly portable, quickly deployable designs I want to play with. When those are out of the way, NAVI Mk2 development will begin. Goals for Mk2 is to integrate GPS and other sensors to facilitate full, proper autonomy. This requires a larger diameter CF center tube to carry the cables, which in turn requires a near complete redesign. I'm sure there will be other changes that I will make along the way, using the knowledge gained from NAVI Mk1.
Thanks again for all the helpful comments, likes, and follows. Please keep an eye out for the test flight of NAVI, and my entry into the Wheels Wings and Walkers challenge! Cheers :)
05/01/2017 at 03:35 •
I have 3D printed a good majority of the parts, have gone back and tweaked them, and reprinted more. I've started assembly as well, and am aiming for a flight test the first week of May, sans the outer shell. I've uploaded the files as they are now, however I would discourage you from printing them, as almost any are subject to change prior to the test flight. Feel free to dig around and make suggestions however :)
Below are pictures of both the partially assembled NAVI MK1, as well as the CAD renders as they currently sit.
04/18/2017 at 19:36 •
I have been working more on getting NAVI's parts printed and assembled. This is a rather tedious build, with lots of small tweaks that need to be made, so most of the work isnt worth writing a log about, but I'm definitely still working on NAVI! Here's a more recent image (however not indicative of its current progress) of NAVI, compared to a tape measure and average 28oz double wall water bottle.
You can also see the NCR18650B cell-based 4s pack I'm putting together to power this bird.
Anyways, just a quick little update. Hoping for a test flight this weekend :)
04/11/2017 at 19:24 •
I've uploaded a Part 1 video on printing and assembly of NAVI. I've also decided to change my initial plan of using Black Widow 1200kv motors, instead opting for 920kv motors and external ESCs (they are however round, and the diameter of the motor, so I will make a custom adapter to mount them as if they were integrated,maximizing use of available space.)
I've also gone through and designed 3d printable gears that thread onto the motor's shaft as if it were a standard prop, and will be testing those. If those dont hold up well, I'll either switch to a belt drive, or have the gears printed in metal or SLS nylon through shapeways.
Just waiting on black ABS filament to show up, to be able to print the rest of the bits :)
04/11/2017 at 19:21 •
I have been working a bit more on NAVI's CAD. The details arent too terribly interesting, and are just minor mechanical things. Here are some updated images. I will be ordering the motors (Using 2208 1200kv Black Widows with integrated ESCs), batteries (Going with a custom 18650 cell based pack, using NCR18650GA cells in a 3s assembly. Using these over LiPo as they can source the needed current and have a higher energy density.) the carbon fiber tube, bearings, and some other bits in the next day or two. Once those arrive, things get interesting :) I intend to do a video on putting NAVI together, or at the very least, there will be images of its assembly. This has been a fun challenge thus far, and should continue to prove interesting :) Thanks for all the love and support, heres to getting NAVI flying in under 2 weeks time, just in time for a family barbecue! :)
There are still some more things to be designed/addressed, such as the motor mount, however they are pretty trivial. Just need to get the motors in hand for precise measurements.
So far I have been able to maintain my 200mm length, 80mm diameter goals. Hoping I can keep it that way :)