2015 Tricopter Build

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The HackRVA 2015 Tricopter Build will be a group build of made from scratch tricopters that sprung from Andrew and the common interest of HackRVA members on the email-list.

We've also started a seperate robotics for hackrva GoogleGroup/MailingList here. Feel free to join and start chatting all things robotics.


  • We're doing a group build of tricopters. More info to come as we progress.
  • Anyone interested should be able to get a copter going pretty quick and have plenty of people/knowledge resources around for help

How to Get Started

Read this if you're ready to sign up and need to know what steps to take: 2015 Tricopter Signup Email Get up to speed with info from flitetest (https://www.youtube.com/user/flitetest)

Resources for Build Participants


Product Quantity
GForce E400 Brushless Outrunner Motor (2212-1000KV) 3
GForce 40C 2200mAh 4S 14.8V LiPO (T-Connector) 1
GForce 30A Brushless Multi-Rotor ESC with SimonK Firmware (2-4S LiPOs) 3
Naze32 6DOF Acro Multicopter Flight Control Board 1
8 x 4.5 Quadcopter Prop Set (One Regular and One Pusher Prop) 5
T Connector Male (5Pcs)(Compatible With Deans Connector) 1
Tork SD1805 Plastic Gear Digital Mini Servo 1

Alternatives - It's been reported that ValueHobby is now sold out of the motors:


Turnigy D2830-11 1000kv Brushless Motor

The generic name for these motors is "A2212 1000kv". If you search the internet you'll find a bunch of online retailers for these motors. Just make sure to identify one that ships from the US so that the motors get here in time.


  • Check the HackRVA google calendar for the latest updates
  • Sat. the 31rst 11am kickoff
    • Followed by two more full Saturdays of building
  • After the build, some members as well as the organizer will make themselves available to members who could not attend this initial build.

Kit Contents

2015 Tricopter Kit Contents

Build Process

  • Construct arms and extend wires
  • Assemble main platform and connect flight controller
  • Balance propellers
  • Update firmware and tune with Cleanflight (http://cleanflight.com/)


  • Work together to learn some new skills
  • Have fun making something
  • Contribute by documenting and helping those with less knowledge


  • learning goals
    • introduce people to some common concepts in electronics/robotics
      • ESC's
      • how radios work
      • the ideas behind IMU - or gyro, accelerator, etc.
    • In addition there will be opportunities for 3D printing for mechanical parts and to CNC route or possibly laser cut parts
  • Use as an opportunity to experiment with the group build process in order to help future builds at hackRVA

Kramer's build, step by step

Kramers tricopter step by step


Tricopter Event Photos

Applications or After the Build

  • Help others build
  • have fun flying our copters
  • Improve and document
  • Taking cool pictures from the sky
  • dropping candy on children
  • Look towards using as an autonomous vehicle
    • following someone
    • SWARMS???
    • burrito delivery