Make Your Own Gadget: From Idea To Reality

Building the First Prototype

With his prototype parts list complete, William was ready to put his designs to the test. His first chassis was made of plywood and aluminum squares, and the microcontroller and its components were thrown together on a simple breadboard. It was a bit sloppy to say the least, but all that mattered at this point was functionality.

Once everything was assembled, it was time to take on the daunting task of programming the control loop, something William was both dreading and eagerly anticipating. Even though his experience with control loops was still very limited, everything fit together, and with the help from fellow multi-copter enthusiasts, William was able to create his first functional prototype.

Because of the cheaper components and his limited control loop, flights were rather unstable, but William didn't care. His goal was to prove his design concept and he was certain that as he better learned how to manipulate the control loop, its stability would improve, which it did by a wide margin. Eventually, William was able to optimize the control loop enough that stability had peaked and it became time to upgrade some components.

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  • s4fun
    How soon before we get manhacks running around everywhere? Darn where did I drop that the crowbar again....
    2
  • mlopinto2k1
    That thing is no joke! Props to that guy!
    2
  • quantumrand
    mlopinto2k1That thing is no joke! Props to that guy!


    Haha, "props" good one ;)
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  • frazik
    DAMN i hope he patents this thing,,, hes just invented something the US air force has been trying to do for years! -- fast , highly mobile helicopters with excellent hovering capabilities.
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  • quantumrand
    frazikDAMN i hope he patents this thing,,, hes just invented something the US air force has been trying to do for years! -- fast , highly mobile helicopters with excellent hovering capabilities.


    He could patent it, but I think he's more interested in the concept of free exchange. You can pretty much find all of the information you'd need, including blueprints and source codes to build your own tri-copter right on his blog.
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  • hardcore_gamer
    *thumbs up* dude =D
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  • martyn
    Real something, not easy part to balance and stabilise whole thing. My hat! I will love to gev it a try my self. Using William's article as starting point...
    A new hobby is born?
    :P)
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  • Anonymous
    Whoa... Cool...
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