The uncommon form factor of this camera was the main challenge. Although it was a 20×20mm mounting pattern, the camera electronics was composed of 2 board, larger than the usual 20×20 stack. Therefore, when released, there were no frame really adapted to mount this camera, so I started to drawn one, suited for minimalist travel: the BackPackerHD.
I first selected all the components to build the most compact 2.5″ frame around them:
- HGLRC Zeus : only AIO board at this time
- HGLRC 20×20 vtx
- 1105 6000Kv motor with Gemfan 2530
- GNB 3S 450mah LiPo
- Runcam Split Mini
- No props in HD footage
- Top mounted battery for better CG
- Very light
I went with a two low profile stack design, stretching the quad in the length rather than in the height. This allow to have a body long enough to get the props out of the camera field of view while lowering the CG of the quad.
To save weight, I used a side-plate based structure instead of a traditionnal top/bottom plate with standoff. The whole frame with hardware and 3mm main plate weight 23g.
Because it’s such a compact design, there is no much room to work on this frame. Some previous build experience is recommended. I’ve posted a full build log on Rotorbuilds for more details. The frame is also available for order on Armattan Production.
Dry weight is under 100g ! 140g with a 450mah 3s battery.
Flight perfomance are good for it’s class, but still very different from a 5″ rig. Fun to fly around, but you have to get used to the throttle response before trying crazy freestyle tricks.
I was a bit disappointed by the Split HD footage. The frame/build also introduced a significant amount of jello. Well, for this price and weight, I guess it’s good enough.
As my first frame design, this projects was very instructive and a rewarding experience. There is definitely room for improvement, stay tuned for future update.
Eventually, I didn’t took my drone for my backpacking trip. Having a small drone is a good start to lighten your gear, but it’s not enough: controller, google, spare parts, charger… All this add-up quickly, and it was just too much space and weight for this kind of travel.
But I still carry my BackPackerHD anytime I can ^^