The tools you need will largely depend on the type of drone you want to build, but there are some basic components that all drones need.
1- Soldering iron and solder
2- Allen key
3- Side cutter
First of all, you have to decide on the body size of the drone. This is a factor that will determine your choice of other hardware. A body between 40 - 55cm is ideal for beginners. This size is the cross measure from engine to engine. If you want to make a racing drone, 25 cm bodies are ideal, but 40 - 55 cm bodies are recommended due to ease of assembly.
If our choice is a body between 40-55 cm, you can ideally use 22 diameter motors. Common are 2212 motors from 750KV to 1200KV. There should be 2 CW (Clock Wise: Clockwise) + 2 CCW (Counter Clock Wise: Counterclockwise) motors. Total flight weight should be considered when choosing an engine. Engine selection should be made by evaluating the thrust (push / pulling force) value of the engine and the flight weight together. It should be checked how much thrust the engine gives in the working position at 50% - 55% gas level. In order to achieve ideal efficiency, the total thrust of the engines below 55% throttle is above the total flight weight of the drone. E.G; Let's assume that the total flight weight (including the battery) of the four-engine drone we will build is 2000 g. The efficient engine thrus for this drone should be around 500g per engine when under 55% throttle. If the long flight time is not important to us, values up to 65% may also work.
The propellers must be suitable for the drone. Drone propellers are used as CW and CCW directions. In a 4-motor drone, 2 CW and 2 CCW propellers should be used. Propeller sizes suitable for 2212 engines are 9 to 10 inches. are the ones. (9045, 1045, 1047 are the most common sizes). Using a larger or smaller fan size than specified in the technical data of the motor will cause the motor to draw more current and heat up, and may damage the ESC.
We need to make sure that the ESC is suitable for the engine we choose. Volts must be suitable in amps and must be produced for Drones. The Hz values of normal model airplane ESCs are low. Ideal Drone ESCs are 400Hz and above. You can find detailed information about ESCs in our related article. The ideal ampere rating of the ESC should be 10% to 15% more amperage than the continuous consumption current of the motor. It can be more, but not less. If the ESC cannot meet the current value that the motor wants to draw, the ESC will be damaged.
The controller provides autonomous support, allowing the drone to fly. There is a wide variety of controllers by brand and model. If GPS will not be used, very affordable controllers will do the trick. It allows the GPS drone to maintain its position in the horizontal plane. In addition, features such as automatic return and landing are realized thanks to GPS. The most popular and quality controller with GPS is the Naza series of the DJI brand. In the professional series, the A series controllers of the same brand are very good. Apart from these, open source brands such as Pixhawk and APM (Ardupilot) can be given as examples of more affordable GPS controllers. If we are not going to use GPS and our aim is to make an economical drone, CC3D, Naze32, Luminier F3 or F4 series controllers will be useful for us. For ease of use, CC3D or Naze32 is recommended initially.
The battery must be LiPo type. Common use at the beginner level is 3S, ie 11.1V batteries. We can decide the capacity of the battery according to the purpose of use and the engine power we use. With a body between 40-55 cm, capacity usage between 1800 mah and 2600 mah is common. The greater the capacity, the greater the weight of the battery and the higher its price.
Note: Although there is a general opinion that the battery should be LiPo type, there are those who have been flying long distances with 18650 batteries recently. You can find videos and reviews on this subject on Youtube.
There are also many brands and models of remote control (Radio Control) systems. Again, if our aim is to make an economical choice, a digital 6-channel control set will be sufficient. The Flysky FS-i6 controller set has the necessary features for this type of drone.
Of course, we will need a controller to fly our drone. To fly a drone, we must use an aircraft controller with at least 4 channels.
There are two stick configurations, mode 1 and mode 2, which are most commonly used in RC controllers. The difference between the two is that the throttle stick and rudder are in different positions.
Mode 2 control (throttle stick on left stick) is used mostly in the world and in our country. Only users who have been accustomed to the mode 1 layout for a long time prefer mode 1 control due to their habits. There are also mode 3 and mode 4 lineups, but they are very, very rare.
Nowadays, almost all RC remote controls operate at 2.4 GHz frequency. In this way, the antenna lengths were shortened and the possibility of frequency interference with each other was almost eliminated, because the 2.4 GHz controllers communicate digitally, unlike the old 35 MHz or 72 MHz controllers, and the receiver and the controller are paired with each other with an encryption.
This pairing process is done only once and then that remote can only communicate with the receivers that know its own password. 2.4 GHz systems perform at least 500m in range. This distance is more than enough if you consider the size of your drone.
In addition, if you are just starting out, it would be a better move not to take your drone too far out of sight, for the safety of both you and those around you.
The connections of electronic materials used in drone construction are usually mounted using solder. Electronic circuits such as controller and ESC easily break down when exposed to high voltage, short circuit and reverse current. Therefore, great attention should be paid to the voltage polarity directions during assembly. The operating voltages of the controller, ESC and receiver should be known and the power supply should be determined accordingly, and if necessary, it should be reduced to the appropriate voltage using a regulator (UBEC). Before connecting the battery to the system, it should be ensured whether there is a short circuit or reverse current.
For example, let’s say we are going to make a drone with engines that will work with 3S, that is, 11.1v. The controller we will use in this drone usually works with 5V. If we send the 11.1v voltage of the battery directly to the controller, the result will be burning. We need to reduce the voltage to the controller to 5v. We can use a standalone ubec or ubec power distribution board for this.
When the assembly is finished, it is time to make the controller settings via the RC controller and computer. The propellers of the motors should never be mounted while adjusting. It may cause serious injury. After making sure all the settings, the propellers should be installed and the test should be performed while not plugged into the computer.
First flight attempts should be made in open areas away from people.