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A multi rotor is a flying vehicle that uses static thrust from multiple rotor blades to provide lift and control. A traditional multirotor has no moving control surfaces and relies on differential thrust for pitch and roll control, and differential torque for yaw control.

Frame Types[edit | edit source]

X-Quad[edit | edit source]

Probably the most common style of multirotor, depending on size can be used for acrobatic flight, lifting a camera and gimbal for aerial photography, or even FPV. A very versatile frame shape.

Towelie Bro Edition
Towelie Bro Edition X-Quad with home made camera gimbal

+ Quad[edit | edit source]

Similar to an X-Quad, but rotated 45 degrees so that one motor points forward. Same flight dynamics as an XQuad but without the advantage of having a clear view forward, if you would like to mount a camera.

H-Quad[edit | edit source]

The H-Quad is typically used for FPV with clear forward field of view and a large platform for mounting FPV equipment.

ADS-400Q Setup for FPV flight

TriCopter[edit | edit source]

A tricopter is often used for fpv as the 120 degree arm spacing leaves plenty of room for a camera to get a clear image forward. A tricopter has added complexity in that it uses a servo to tilt the rear motor and prop to povide Yaw.

HexaCopter[edit | edit source]

A Hex is a 6 rotored vehicle. Generally used in larger sizes to provide heavy lifting capabilities. The ability to operate after the failure of one or more motors is reported but may be controller dependant.

Custom Hexacopter
Custom made mini Hex

OctoCopter[edit | edit source]

8 Rotors, once again designed with heavy lifting in mind. Depending on load, a certain level of redundancy is expected

Y6 / X8[edit | edit source]

Coaxial configurations that provide redundancy at the expense of efficiency when compared with flat Hex or Octo models.

Custom Coaxial X8
Custom made X8 showing use of coaxial motors

Materials[edit | edit source]

When it comes to frame materials, stiffer = better. The less the frame wobbles, the easier it will be to tune and the less headaches you will have troubleshooting performance. Materials of choice are currently Carbon Fibre (strong, light expensive) or G10 fibreglass (strong, not as light, not as expensive). Home made frames can be made of readily available materials such as aluminium tubing and plywood, as long as consideration is given to the overall rigidity of the design. Definitely stay away from frames that are made of plastic.