Icon DIY - ZMR250 Quadcopter

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This is the build log for my ZMR250 Cloneout Quadcopter. This is the first multirotor I have ever attempted to build and as such it will be documented and treated as a learning experience. All of the information contained here-in has been gathered and processed into the information you see here.

Icon Parts List

Icon Radio Transmitter (Tx)
  • FrSky Taranis - 16 Channel, Full Telemetry Transmitter   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 172.25  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • OrangeRX DSMX/DSM2 2.4Ghz Transmitter Module (JR/Turnigy compatible)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 29.99  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/10/13)
  • HawkEYE DTF UHF OpenLRS Deluxe Transmitter Module Starter Kit   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 79.95  —  HobbiesFLY
Icon Radio Receiver (Rx)
  • FrSky D8R-XP 2.4Ghz 8CH Receiver (w/telemetry)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 27.23  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • FrSky D4R-II 4ch 2.4Ghz ACCST Receiver (w/telemetry)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 18.71  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • FrSky USB Cable   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 7.74  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • HawkEYE DTF UHF MiniRX Long Range Receiver   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 45.95  —  HobbiesFLY
Icon Radio Accessories
  • FrSky AC/DC Charge Adapter US Version   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 6.95  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • Alloy Anti-Slip TX Control Sticks Long (Red)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.99  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • Alloy Anti-Slip TX Control Sticks Short (Red)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.89  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • USB Simulator Cable All in One   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 8.99  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • 3ft USB 2.0 A Male to Mini-B 5pin Male 28/24AWG Cable w/ Ferrite Core (Gold Plated)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.17  —  Monoprice (Purchased: 2014/10/14)
  • CNC Metal Transmitter Stand, JR & Futaba   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 5.48  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/02/15)
Icon Battery Charger
  • Turnigy Accucel-6 50W 6A Balancer/Charger w/ Accessories   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 24.10  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
  • Lithium Polymer Charge Pack 25x33cm JUMBO Sack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.94  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/10/13)
  • HobbyKing Power Supply 100~240v 5A   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 9.49  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/08/15)
Icon Case & Ground Station Accessories
  • Condition 1 Watertight 100801 Hard Case (Black)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 73.99  —  B&H (Purchased: 2015/05/20)
  • Turnigy Transmitter Bag / Carrying Case   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 12.50  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/02/15)
  • Folding Bag Chair (Blue)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 7.88  —  Home Depot (Purchased: 2015/05/18)
Icon Frame
  • H250 ZMR250 Carbon Fiber Mini Quadcopter Frame Kit[1]   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 35.29  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2014/08/29)
  • PDB for ZMR 250 Mystery Clone   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 17.54  —  RCGroups.com (Purchased: 2014/08/29)
  • 30mm M3 Black Female/Female Nylon Standoffs, 10-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 4.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • 10mm M3 Black Male/Female Nylon Standoffs, 10-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.50  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • M3 x 12mm Black Nylon Screws, 10-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.75  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/07)   |   Icon 4
Icon Flight Controller
  • AfroFlight Naze32 Acro FunFly Controller - Soldered version (Vertical Pin)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 29.99  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2015/01/06)
  • Piezo Buzzer   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/16)
Icon Electronic Speed Controller (ESC)
  • Afro ESC 12Amp Ultra Lite Multi-rotor Motor Speed Controller (SimonK Firmware) Version 3   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 9.99  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2015/01/06)   |   Icon 4
  • Afro ESC USB Programming Tool   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 7.57  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/05/20)
  • Mini 3A DC-DC (buck) Converter Adjustable Step Down Switching Regulator   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 5.00  —  MultiRotorMania (Purchased: 2015/05/31)
  • DYS SN20A Mini 20A SimonK ESC OPTO 2-4S 20-500Hz   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 11.06  —  Banggood   |   Icon 6
Icon Batteries
  • Turnigy nano-tech 1300mah 3S 25~50C Lipo Pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 10.86  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/02/15)   |   Icon 1
    * Purchased for FPV gear
  • Turnigy nano-tech 1300mah 3S 45~90C Lipo Pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 13.45  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/01/07)   |   Icon 4
  • Turnigy nano-tech 1500mah 3S 35~70C Lipo Pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 16.45  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/02/05)   |   Icon 4
  • XT60 Male w/ 12AWG Silicon Wire 10cm (5pcs/bag)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 6.89  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/01/06)
  • Battery Strap 20x200mm - Blue   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/16)   |   Icon 2
  • Turnigy Battery Strap 330mm   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.75  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2014/10/13)   |   Icon 2
  • On-Board Lipoly Low Voltage Alarm 2s~3s   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.17  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2014/10/13)
  • HobbyKing Cell Checker with Low Voltage Alarm (2S-8S)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.78  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/02/15)
  • Low Voltage Alarm   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.75  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/21)
Icon Motors
  • DYS BE1806 2300KV Brushless Motor   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 9.79  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2014/08/29)   |   Icon 4
  • DYS BE1806 2300KV Brushless Motor - Black Edition   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 12.69  —  Banggood (US)
Icon Propellers
  • HQProp 5x4.5 Orange Bullnose x2 (Normal)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.70  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/05/13)
  • HQProp 5x4.5 Orange Bullnose x2 (Reverse)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.70  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/05/13)
  • HQProp 5x3 Black x2 (Normal)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.40  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • HQProp 5x3 Black x2 (Reverse)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.40  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • HQProp 5x3 Green x2 (Normal)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.40  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • HQProp 5x3 Green x2 (Reverse)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.40  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • Gemfan 5x3 Inch Plastic 5030 Propeller CW/CCW For 240 250 Frame   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.72  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2014/08/29)   |   Icon 5
  • Gemfan 5x4 Inch Plastic 5040 Propeller CW/CCW For QAV250   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.64  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/02/21)   |   Icon 4
  • Simple Prop Balancer   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.58  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/01/07)
  • Black M4 Nylon Lock Nuts, 6-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.25  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/16)
Icon Video Recording & FPV
  • Mobius HD Action Camera   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 75.99  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • Boscam FPV 5.8G 8CH 200mW AV Wireless Receiver RC305   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 19.99  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • Boscam FPV 5.8G 200mW AV Wireless Transmitter TS351   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 19.99  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • 600TVL SONY SUPER HAD CCD D-WDR Color Board Camera OSD Menu DNR-US   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 37.00  —  SurveilZone (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • MinimOSD, Right Angle Soldered   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 14.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/07)
  • ImmersionRC 5.8 GHz SpiroNET Omni RP-SMA Antenna Set (RHCP)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 27.99  —  Ready Made RC (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • Quanum DIY FPV Goggle Set with Monitor (KIT)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 26.99  —  HobbyKing (Purchased: 2015/02/05)
  • FTDI Programmer   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 5.50  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/18)
  • RP-SMA Male to RP-SMA Female Coaxial RF Extension Cable RG316 4in   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 7.04  —  ebay (Purchased: 2015/02/06)
  • 100g Rubber Vibration Isolation Balls 7mm, 2-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.25  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/21)   |   Icon 4
  • 200g Rubber Vibration Isolation Balls 10mm - Blue, 2-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/02/16)   |   Icon 4
  • FR632 Diversity 5.8GHz 32ch Auto Scan LCD A/V Receiver   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 55.86  —  HobbyKing
  • HawkEYE Mini 5.8GHz 200mW 32ch Wireless A/V Transmitter   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 30.95  —  HobbiesFLY
  • ImmersionRC 5.8GHz Circular Polarized SpiroNet Atenna V2 (RHCP SMA)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 39.99  —  HobbyKing
  • Mini D1 1ch SDCard 7-16V DVR   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 65.99  —  Foxtech Hobby
Icon Other
  • M3 Female x M3 Female 35mm Black Nylon Hex Standoff, 10-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.60  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2014/10/11)   |   Icon 2
  • M3 Female x M3 Female 10mm Black Nylon Hex Standoff, 25-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.80  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2014/10/11)
  • M3 Male x M3 Female 6mm Black Nylon Hex Standoff, 25-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.50  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2014/10/11)

  • M3 x 6mm Black Nylon Philips Head Screw, 25-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.40  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2014/10/11)
  • M2 x 8mm Stainless Steel Philips Head Screw, 50-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.09  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2014/08/29)
  • M3 x 12mm Black Nylon Pan Head Screw, 100-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 3.99  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2015/03/09)
  • M3 x 12mm Steel Hex Head Screw, 50-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 4.90  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2015/05/15)
  • M3 Black Nylon Washer (3mm x 8mm x 1mm), 50-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 2.90  —  Ebay (Purchased: 2015/05/15)

  • 3 Pin 20cm 2.54mm Jumper Wire Cables DuPont Line For Arduino, 5-pack   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.56  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2014/08/29)   |   Icon 2

  • 3.2mm Polyolefin 3:1 Heat Shrink Tubing Tube Sleeve Wrap   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.00  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/01/06)   |   Icon 2
  • 6.4mm Adhesive Polyolefin 3:1 Heat Shrink Tube Sleeve Wrap 1.6ft   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.13  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/01/06)   |   Icon 2
  • 7.9mm Polyolefin 3:1 Heat Shrink Tubing Tube Sleeve Wrap   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.60  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/01/06)   |   Icon 2

  • 4mm Braided Expandable Auto Wire Cable Sleeving High Density Sheathing (2M)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.38  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/01/06)
  • 8mm Braided Wire Cable Gland Expandable Sleeving High Density Sheathing (2M)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 1.50  —  Banggood (Purchased: 2015/01/06)
  • HK-171 Thread Locker & Sealant Medium Strength (Blue)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 5.13  —  HobbyKing (US) (Purchased: 2015/01/07)

Icon Build Log

Icon Pre-build Checklist
  • First pull everything out and make sure you have all the parts necessary.
  • Then check the frame and PDB to make sure you have all the parts necessary, you might also want to select which of the two bottom plates you are actually going to use as one will be replaced by the PDB.
Icon Motors
  • Unbox all of the motors and separate the long vs. short screws.
  • Install the propeller shaft adapters onto each motor using four short screws per motor.
  • Finally assemble the motors to the carbon fiber arms. Use 2 long screws and 1 short screw for each motor (unless you want to use a dremel on the arm holes to accommodate all four, however this it is entirely optional) using loctite blue as a sealant. To determine which holes get the long vs short screws look inside the motor where the screw punctures through into the motor shaft you will see the motor lead wires in there as well. If the screw hole is directly above the motor leads you have to use a short screw as in using a long screw you would short out the motor leads.
Icon Battery
  • Plug in your soldering iron (medium tip) to get it readyfor the battery connector.
  • While waiting for the soldering iron, start charging one of the batteries that was bought for the quad. Remember to charge using the balance mode!
  • Cut down to size (eventually shortened the wire to about 1.5" long, not shown in picture) and then solder the connector to the PDB board.
Icon Electronic Speed Controller (ESC)
  • Plug your soldering iron back in, this time with a fine point tip.
  • Now to get started on the ESCs, pull them all out of their packaging and strip the sticker and current heat shrink off of all four of them.
  • Desolder all of the motor leads on all four ESCs.
  • Cut the motor leads to length for placement of ESCs at the midway point on the arms. Solder the ESCs to the motors.
    Note: Remember to connect two motors in a '1:1 / 2:2 / 3:3' configuration and the other two motors in a '1:1 / 2:3 / 3:2' configuration.

  • Next we need to test the motors, for this use the original ESC leads that we de-soldered previously and solder two of them to one of the spare JST60 battery connectors to act as a wire harness so that we can spin up the motors with just the connector, a receiver, and a transmitter. Mark which direction each motor spins so that we can make sure to have two CW (clock-wise) and two CCW (counter clock-wise) motors. If this is not the case then go back and re-solder what ever is needed.
  • Finally use heat shrink to protect the ESCs from the conductive carbon fiber arms.
Icon Overcraft Power Distribution Board
  • First we will need to solder two separate servo leads, one for the vbat and the other for the buzzer. Make sure to cut them to length before you solder them.
  • Mount the flight controller onto the PCB using the nylon standoffs.
  • Attach all of the arms and the bottom plate using only two out of the four screws on each arm for the time being. Then pre-tin the pads on the PDB to prep them for attaching the ESCs.
  • I next put labels on my table to coorespond to the proper motor numbering given left is the front of my quad and right is the rear.
    Note: This information was obtained from page 4 in the Acro Naze32 Manual. | Acro Naze32 (rev5)
  • Cut down to length and solder all of the ESCs onto the PDB, make sure you attach them correctly (polarity).
  • Cut the power and ground wire down to size for ESCs 2-4 leaving only the BEC from the first motor attached to provide power to the flight controller. Then connect all four of the motors to the flight controller.
    Note: This information was obtained from page 3 in the Naze32 Manual. | Naze32 (rev3)
Icon Flight Controller
  • Install the USB Driver for the flight controller. If you lack the driver for the Naze32 you can download it here.
  • Make sure you have Google Chrome installed, and install the App Cleanflight.
  • Launch Cleanflight and then connect your flight controller to your computer via usb (with the quad powered off).
  • Cleanflight will not auto-connect, click on the "Firmware Flasher" tab on the left.
  • Choice #1: Make sure the latest firmware is chosen from the dropdown list. Click "Load Firmware [Online]".
  • Choice #2: Download the latest Betaflight and select "Load Firmware [Local]", then choosing the firmware .hex file you downloaded
    Note: make sure the only period in the filename is for the extension.
  • Click "Flash Firmware" and Wait a few moments for your flight controller to update (you should see confirmation of completion) and then click the "Connect" button in the upper left, you should now be connected to your flight controller.
  • Navigate to the "Configuration" tab and enable the features: PPM, VBAT, MOTOR_STOP, FAILSAFE & TELEMETRY according to the screenshot and then click "Save and Reboot".
  • Navigate to the "Ports" tab and setup your telemetry soft-serial port according to the screenshot and then click "Save and Reboot".
  • Navigate to the "Modes" tab and setup as follows:
  • Last navigate to the "CLI" tab and enter in the following commands:

set telemetry_inversion = ON

set yaw_jump_prevention_limit = 350

set deadband = 2

set yaw_deadband = 10

  • Click "Save and Reboot".
Icon Pre-FPV / Maiden Flight
  • With the quad now fully working (aside from FPV gear) you can now check the battery voltage alarm by taking it on your maiden flight and running the battery down to low in a hover.

Icon 4S Upgrade

Icon Frame
  • MRM 3mm ZMR250 CF Replacement Arms x2   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 10.50  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/11/30)   |   Icon 2
Icon Flight Controller
  • Bluetooth Module   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 7.50  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/11/30)
Icon Electronic Speed Controller (ESC)
  • MRM Zeus 20a ESC   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 12.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/11/30)   |   Icon 4
  • MRM Zeus USB Linker   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 10.00  —  MultiRotor Mania (Purchased: 2015/11/30)
Icon Motors
  • Cobra 2206 2100kv Brushless Motor   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 25.99  —  Multirotor Superstore (Purchased: 2015/11/20)   |   Icon 4
Icon Batteries
  • Lumenier 4S 1800mAh 75/150c   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 36.99  —  GetFPV (Purchased: 2015/11/30)
Icon Video Recording & FPV
  • Quanum DIY FPV Goggles V2   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 53.75  —  HobbyKing
  • FR632 Diversity 5.8GHz 32ch Auto Scan A/V Receiver   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 53.07  —  HobbyKing
  • ImmersionRC 5.8GHz Circular Polarized SpiroNet Antenna V2 (RHCP SMA)   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 39.95  —  HobbyKing (US)
  • Davis & Sanford EXPLORERV Vista Explorer 60" Tripod with Tripod Bag   Icon Manufacturer
    Icon 19.99  —  Amazon

Icon References