The new Buddy

Here it is my project with Navio+.

A friend of me, gave this buddy to me to make him a new life, along with Navio+.

Here it is the buddy:

It has 6x Turnigy D2380/11 1000kV (the label 1100kV seems to be a factory error) with 10x4.5 props:

Then 6x Hobbyking ESC 30A

A really poor Power Distribution Board (with plug for two battery?? no sense!), I want to built a new one from scratch with XT60 plug:

The controller ( that will go away) is a KK.

So… guys what do you think? will support me with this project? I am a really newbbie :

Following doc here:

It seems that I have to plug just ONE power pin on the six ESC to the NAVIO servo rails. Am i right?

I have all 4 connected on my quad. it should be fine as long as they all have a shared ground (which the rail does for you anyway if you are also plugging the grounds in). Just dont try to pull too much power from the rail, I dont know the limits of the navio rail. But the ESC’s wont pull much at all (they are powered from the battery connection), and if nothing else is connected then it shouldnt be a problem. (especially if they are all from the same power source - battery or even 2 batteries in parallel)

Hardware looks very nice tho :slight_smile: I’d suggest a 3S battery looking at the motor specs and the props you have.

Also I’d keep the second battery connections, I’m tempted to add a second to my quad at some point (maybe) it allows you to increase the flight time of the craft at a later point if you choose to do so.

Thanks mathew for your valuable suggestion.

So I’ll go with a 3S battery, without a second in parallel, as I am still experimenting.

It’s better to leave only one BEC with a power wire (the middle one), because if all four BECs would be connected there would be current flow between them and they would be heating each other.

Got it mikha, thanks. So the 5 on 6 BEC unconnected to navio servo rails power plug will receive power directly from battery.

So the question is… why not to do the same for all the ESC, unplug the power pin connected to navio, and let them drain current from battery?

BECs are not powered by Navio+, it’s otherwise - Navio+ is additionally powered by a BEC. Connecting a BEC to the servo rail provides power to servos as well as backup power for Navio+ (in case power module fails). It’s not necessary if you have no servos in your setup, but it’s better to do so in order to have a backup power source.

Crystal clear now. Thanks.

Looking around they seem to be contended on it, but I think I’d agree with you mikhail. However, running the PI+Navio from one ESC will mean that ESC has a larger current draw and will get slightly hotter than the others. So it’d probably be best to disconnect 5 and leave one with the Navio+ but you should also use another separate BEC to power the PI and Navio+ using the BEC connection on the Navio+

btw. is a handy tool, but you might have to pick motors/ESC’s that are close to your configuration as they dont have them all there.

Also my 3S suggestion was based from the hobbyking page
It states Suggested Prop: 8x4 (4S) ~ 10x7 (2S)
Your props are somewhere in the middle (you might get away with 10x5’s tbh at 3S but with the ones you have a 3S is best)

The BECs on those ESCs are linear voltage regulators. I always left them all connected on my copters and nothing bad happenend, but never ever try this with switching BECs.

Hi Fabio,

I used ecalc to make a calculation for your setup.
On 3S it should have plenty of power to carry big (or two) batteries or a camera etc.
As you can see it hovers at 27% throttle with a single 3300mAh 3s lipo, so it is actually a little overpowered.
That should be no problem, as you can always add more weight.
The only problem I ever had with a high powered copter and APM, is that the autotune may not run through.

Also have an eye on those props, they get weak at the hub connection, from the frequent rpm changes on a copter and/or a heavy copter.
Just have a good look at them before and after each flight and if they get white where the blades meet the hub, replace them.
If you are going to fly with a lot of weight, change them to something stronger.
APC MR props work great, for example.

Sebastian, Mathew,

thanks for your hints, I’m really appreciating them.

So, following and earlier suggestion, I bought a 3S 3300 mAh 35C.

First step was removing props, then power up the copter leaving the motors/ESCs connected to KK2.0. Motors/ESC beeped twice and KK2.0 turned on. Everything seemed to be fine.

So I disconnected the KK2.0 and put the NAVIO+. Then connected the Motor/ESCs to NAVIO servo rails.

I powered the NAVIO with microUSB port with an external power source.

Finally I connected the battery, but the Motors/ESC start beeping and continued indefinitely!!!

What’s going on? I also tried to connect only one ESC to NAVIO, but it was the same, the motor continuously beeped without end.

Note that, both with KK2.0 setup and with NAVIO I had no RC receivers connected.

Thanks in advances

Fabio, did you start the ArduCopter.elf?
And if you did, did you perform the whole setup process for the APM through Missionplanner/APMPlanner?
If you do not have a receiver connected, you actually can not complete the setup process.
The Raspberry Pi + Navio + APM is quite a bit more complex than the KK2.0.
If the ESCs just beep continously, it means they do not receive a valid PWM signal.

I did two things:

  1. Tried to the servo examples here

As result the motor did not spin but it simply changed the beep frequency that has got higher.

  1. Started Ardupilot and successfully connected to APMPlanner. I saw telemetry coming from NAVIO. The beep was still there.
    I do not have a recevier and radio yet. So I did not start the whole setup process on APM.

The point is that, before investing money on recevier and RC, I would like to check that everything is fine.

The PWM signal usually goes from 1000us to 2000us more or less. While Servos and car ESCs take 1500us as neutral and move forward/backward, aircraft/copter ESCs only allow the motor to move in one direction. They need a PWM signal of around 1000us or lower to arm.
If you try to operate an ESC with the servo example, the output starts at 1500us and the ESCs will not arm. It is a safety feature.
You can see the PWM values the Navio puts out in the status tab of apmplanner below the Primary Flight Display.
The values are labelled rc_out 1-8

Fabio, ESC has a safety feature. It wants to first receive a short impulse (zero throttle command). As discussed here

Is everything wired properly? Can you post a picture? Have you performed ESC calibration? There is a good chance they will not arm unless calibrated.


I collected all your suggestions and I now solved the issue.

Firstly I ran the servo example, with pulse of 1000 and after a second a pulse of 1100. The motor armed and started spinning.

Then I could start ardupilot, without the annoying beeping, and I start learning APM a little bit more.

I have the feeling that APM thinks it is a quad. How can I tell him it is an hexa? Looking at parameters I do not find a suitable one!

Thanks again

Fabio, APM requires different builds for different types of copters. We will automate this in the near future by setting up a build server that will make binaries for all configurations. At the moment please follow this guide:

The only change is this:

make navio

to this:

make navio-hexa

Other options are: quad tri hexa y6 octa octa-quad heli single obc nologging

Docs are updated to include this info:

Everything runs fine now. Even the PS 3 controller :slight_smile:

Thanks guys

@fabiobortoli This is very cool :smiley:

Keep us updated!

PS3 controller has a ~30ft range looking around. Be careful.