DRONES ARE GOOD!
Where were you for International Drone Day? This year it takes place on Saturday May 05, 2018 after following the success of the first International Drone Day in 2015, which we saw over 40,000 people in 150 countries take part of. Hundreds of teams throughout the world will hold events to educate those outside of the drone community about the many positive ways in which drones are used to better society. The mantra of those taking part is “Drones are Good!”
International Drone Day was founded by Sarah and David Oneal, of “That Drone Show”. They comment: “International Drone Day is hosted by the drone community for the public. It’s an opportunity for people that have heard of drones to find out more about them. As a result of International Drone Day 2015, vast numbers of people now understand that drones are used in good ways – from being used to save lives in search and rescue, to providing more efficient ways to monitor crops, to producing beautiful photographs. International Drone Day also highlights the much needed economic boost provided by drones, and shows that drones are fun!”
ALL SHAPES AND SIZES
Any readers who are looking a challenging new 3D printing project should definitely check out this cool folding micro FPV (first-person view) H-Quadcopter made by the guys over at Hovership. The Quadcopter is a very cool radio-controlled helicopter with four propeller blades (hence the quad in its name) that you can construct in your very own home for a fraction of the costs of similar models sold in stores. Interestingly enough though, Hovership has uses 3D printing to cut costs and offer affordable options for all 'copter' enthusiasts out there. They even keep their DIY mentality strong by freely sharing their design on Thingiverse, while selling printed parts in their webshop for anyone who doesn't have a printer at home.
This has allowed him to develop a standard design for the frame of a lightweight quadcopter with foldable wings, to which you can then add all the motors and accessories you want. Its design allows you to add options for compact storage & transportation, integrated vibration dampening, and a number of mounting options for a Mobius, GoPro camera or other electronics. These other parts will still have to be bought rather than printed, and can be found in most hobby stores and in the Hovership webstore.
Nonetheless, this design will allow you to save some money, as a regular FPV quad frame will set you back about $100 or more, while printing your own in ABS will only cost you about $4 in filament. Other materials could be used, but Steve acknowledges that 'I have only printed these parts with ABS which have held up well in crashes. PLA might not hold up as well but these parts are all cheap to print replacements for.' You can find the free 3D design here at Thingiverse. Alternatively, Hovership will print it for you and ship it to you for $40 through their webshop. You can then work on constructing this awesome quadcopter in your own home, using their free guides.
3D Printing DIY Drones
Where would drones be if it wasn't for the field of 3D printing and it's addictive manufacturing!? Yes, anyone can buy the parts and wait a few days for them to come in or you can join in on the excitement of 3D printing drones and be back in the field flying drones in no time. That's what we did we got quite up in all the excitement for International Drone Day.
Simon of RCLifeOn on YouTube demonstrates the ease of 3D printing drones and drone propellers for that matter. You can always follow in his footsteps and try 3D printing the Peon230 from Thingiverse. Though we would have 3D printed the Hovership MHQ2 from Thingiverse it just goes to shows you that you can use any drone frame that works with your components for racing.
The best thing about the 3D printing propeller video that Simon uploaded is that he tested various 3D printed propellers in different filaments from PLA and PETG, which is perfect for those wanting to choose between the two even though they both got destroyed during the video. The only downside to 3D printing big files from Thingiverse or any STL place on the internet is that it's going to take a really long time.
Like seen throughout the two videos Simon crashes a few times, some to prove a point and some just racing accidents but if it wasn't for hours on hours of 3D printing Simons' drone racing adventure that day would have been ruined. We know from experience that from just one little crash with 3D printed drone propellers that if you don't have enough props while in a certain place it's game over for that day. So just remember to spend a bunch of hours 3D printing all those drone files and to keep it DIY and remember that 3D printing is to try out new things it still comes down to having fun and doing what you love!