DSCN9266-1000Many of my friends have these fancy drones and quad-copters. They’ve been meeting regularly at the makerspace.

I decided to get one but I went the minimalist route. I spent about $25 for this Cheerson CX-10 Nano RC (4ch, 6 axis, 2.4G radio, 4 LED).

The plan was to validate that my radio controlled flying skills transfer over, check out the community and be ready for another drone project such as the photography drone project I have been thinking about.

The CX-10 is small and light enough to fly anywhere. Pretty minimal prop blast. It’s a bit nippy if it comes in contact with you but aside from eyes I think it’s pretty safe.

I’m very pleased with it. It’s a fun flyer.

I’ve showed this thing around quite a bit plus I brought it to Arduino Day. There is tonnes of interest so I’m posting this note so people can get the details.

I should mention that flying radio planes, helicopters and multi-rotors is not as trivial as it looks. It takes a bit of practice.

I had a second one but I gave it away at a draw at one of the Arduino Meetups.

Here are some shots of it in action (thanks to Peter Stockdale).

How to Fly the CX-10

The best thing to do is try and hover it 2 feet from the table or floor and stay in the same place.

So you’ll be tweaking position with the right stick and power on the left.
Once you get that going, then add the rudder (right stick) to make sure the red lights are facing…
Once you get that start moving forward and back…
Once you get that, start moving left and right…
Once you get that make circles both directions…
Once you get that start to fly with the red lights turned 90 degrees (both sides)…
Once you get that start flying with the red lights away…
Once you get that fly figure 8 but with the red lights trailing behind the whole way (the blue lights always facing the direction of travel.
Congratulations you’re an expert. 🙂

Maintenance of the CX-10 Quad

One thing that’s really worth it is to order extra propellers. They tend to come with a spare set but sooner or later your going to break propellers.

I’ve had two problems with mine. After slamming it around quite a bit one of the motors became unsoldered. Also the USB connector became un-soldered after curious dis-assembly.  It’s easy to spot these sorts of problems visually. After resoldering and reassembly it runs like a top!

The electrical connectors may be “micro JST 1.25mm connector”. I’m not sure yet, just verifying that.

Removable Battery for CX-10 Quad

I figure it runs pretty long for what it is but I think a nice hack would be a collection of removable batteries so it can be run a lot more. My CX-10’s switch fell off so I figure a good hack is to jump it and then run it by plugging a removable battery into the charging jack.

Seller fmt-model on eBay has these nice batteries and charger for a good price. Here you can see the four pictures from the seller and the final one is the detail of one of the batteries. It was 12.47 and 2.72 shipping and it took just over a month. Not too bad.

They don’t have the little connectors pictured in the product page. The product was described as “CX-10-002 battery CX-10-012 USB Cable for Cheerson CX-10 Quadcopter F09055-J”. I’m just waiting to hear back from them on it.

Buying the CX-10 Quad

If you search ebay for “cx-10” you should find lots of sellers. I bought it from this ebay seller. I also bought one here.

Don’t forget to order extra propellers. Search “CX-10 propeller” or something like that in eBay.

Related to CX-10

Here’s the next stop up from it. This ebay post is especially amusing since it shows it flying in space. 🙂 Here’s a vendor walkthrough of it which I also find especially amusing because of his call to action to subsribe at the end.

They have a camera nano now..

FQ777 954

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