Introduction: Cheap Flying Lego Quadcopter

Picture of Cheap Flying Lego Quadcopter

Ever needed an excuse to start building Lego again? Now is the time! Turns out Lego bricks can be used to build a perfect symmetrical frame for your quadcopter! And... it's super cheap.

I used Lego Technic because it has holes in the bricks. You can mount the motor's with tie wraps through the holes and it's an ideal weight reduction. For the motor's and flight controller I used parts from the famous Hubsan X4.

Interested...? Then dust of those Lego bricks and start building!

Step 1: Tools and Materials

You'll need the following tools/materials:

  • Lego (of course)
  • Soldering iron
  • Elastic band
  • Soldering tin for electric components (optional)
  • Doublesided tape (optional)

I ordered my Hubsan X4 parts from Banggood.com. http://www.banggood.com/buy/Hubsan-x4.html They have the parts even cheaper then ebay. This is what you need:

  • Hubsan flight controler 107l or 107c (107l if your planning on adding fancy led lights, 107c if your planning on adding a camera)
  • 4 7mm hollow cup motors
  • 4 blades (and maybe some spare)
  • 3.7v battery + charger
  • Hubsan remote (if you dont have one)

If you don't have a remote yet, then it's probably cheaper to buy a rtf hubsan x4. You can take it apart and as a bonus you get the original hubsan x4 frame!

Step 2: Soldering the Flight Controler

Picture of Soldering the Flight Controler

This requires a little soldering but nothing really hard. If you look at the flight controller, the place where you need to solder the motor's is already labeled.

And as you've probably seen there are clockwise and counterclockwise motor's. It's important to place the same motor's opposite of each otter. So clockwise motor opposite of the other clockwise motor and same for counterclockwise.

The flight controller already has some soldering tin on it, but it's not much. So you can add some extra if you want.

Step 3: Building Your Lego Frame

Picture of Building Your Lego Frame

I will let the pictures do the talking. You don't have to build exactly the same frame I build. With a little imagination you can build some awesome frames! Just don't make the frame to heavy or it will be very hard to fly (if it even has lift off). Please share you awesome frames for inspiration!

Step 4: Mounting the Motor's and Flight Controller

Picture of Mounting the Motor's and Flight Controller

What I mentioned earlier is that Lego Technic is perfect for mounting the props. It has holes in the bricks and all you need to do is mount the motor's with tie wraps trough the holes. I also used double sided tape to keep the motor's in place. Fixate the flight controller on top, battery under the frame and your good to go!

Let me know if you have questions, I'll be happy to answer them. Good luck building your own Legocopter!

Comments

williamgustafso (author)2017-09-21

Hi! I am going to build this drone in Lego as a project in school. I do not have a lot of money so just I want to make sure I buy the right drone. Is this the recommended one?

https://www.banggood.com/New-Version-Upgraded-Hubs...

Weseley (author)williamgustafso2017-09-24

This is a newer version, but you can definitely use this one! Just take it apart with care ;-), good luck!

arvlag862 (author)2017-09-13

Hey Weseley, can you please check my parts? Do they really work together or do I need to change something? I was a bit confused due to your broken links.

https://gyazo.com/31acf3bac25dccfa22ec7d6e1186659f (link with all the parts)

Weseley (author)arvlag8622017-09-15

Yes, you got the right parts! Thanks for mentioning the broken link, I'll fix it this weekend. Good luck!

arvlag862 (author)Weseley2017-09-15

Thank you so much for the answer!

AntonioJ15 (author)2017-05-28

Hello, is it possible to control the drone by the smarthphone with arduino+bluetooth?

GavinK12 (author)2016-07-22

Hey Weseley! Is there anywhere I can buy a good controller individually while still fitting a low budget profile?

Weseley (author)GavinK122016-07-26

Hello Gavink, the controller is about the most expensive part for the project. But you can make your own controller with an Arduino and RF transmitter. It's a lot of work but the price will be under $10.

Insha-789 (author)2016-03-27

Hey Weseley can I get a shipment for this chip and controller in India, please copy the link as well if it's possible, thank you

Weseley (author)Insha-7892016-03-28

Hello Insga, I have no idea what webshops ship to India. I ordered mine from banggood.com. You can also find them on E-bay. Just search the internet, I think you know better which webshops ship too India then me. Good luck!

anteloff (author)2016-03-26

Hi Wesely,

I've never owned a drone before. What's better in your opinion, building my own lego drone or buying some cheap drone to learn how to fly first. I've seen some nice quads at an affordable price for sale here : quads for sale. I can buy JXD 509V for $65 from amazon which is pretty cheap, maybe that's good decision. I would like to build some more complex drones in future, not only lego drone. It looks like I'm right on the begining of some nice journey :)

Weseley (author)anteloff2016-03-28

Hello Anteloff,

To be honest, before building this drone I've never even flown or owned a drone. I just liked the idea of building one and started gathering parts. That way you can enjoy building your own as well as learn flying it :). You can also buy a cheap drone, learn flying it and later use it for parts for your own build. Good luck!

jessi0vanb (author)2016-01-20

Hi there,

What type of battery is compatible with the flight controller and motors? What amperage did you use?

We were thinking of buying these: http://www.banggood.com/1-To-5-3_7V-220MAH-15C-Lip...

Do you know if they would work?

Thanks!

Weseley (author)jessi0vanb2016-01-24

Hello,

The battery in the link will work. It's a little low on the amperage so it wont flight for long. On the other hand, it's not a heavy battery which makes flying easier.

I have a 220mAh and a 500mAh battery, both 3.7v, they work fine.

Good luck!

jessi0vanb (author)Weseley2016-03-09

Awesome! Thanks so much for the response. We ended up going with the 500mAh batteries and they work great!

Weseley (author)jessi0vanb2016-01-24

Hello,

The battery in the link will work. It's a little low on the amperage so it wont flight for long. On the other hand, it's not a heavy battery which makes flying easier.

I have a 220mAh and a 500mAh battery, both 3.7v, they work fine.

Good luck!

styles1 (author)2016-02-20

can we use any remotes other than hubsan remote ?

Weseley (author)styles12016-02-21

I don't know what other transmitters are compatatteble with the Hubsan X4 but I know you can make your own with an Arduino and rf chip.

styles1 (author)Weseley2016-02-23

tnx

halvi (author)2016-02-09

how much it costs in total

9000612 (author)2016-01-21

it is nice good instructable

Weseley (author)90006122016-01-24

Thank you!!

MohamedElkhatri Maker (author)2015-12-27

Thanks for the idea of lego, I was looking for a carcass and that's the best. Thanks a lot.

gabryg29 made it! (author)2015-10-28

I made it and almost everything is working. The instructable is great. It seems like one of the motors works only if I manually flip the drone to almost 70 degree, so I assume that the gyro is broken or maybe the motor is wrong too. Any other ideas it can be causing it?

Thanks!

Weseley (author)gabryg292015-12-04

Hello Gabryg29,

I'm sorry for my late response... But it looks really cool! I suspect that flight controller isn't perfectly leveled. Because if that's the case, the flight controller will constantly try to balance the quad. So try to put the flight controller exactly in the middle and as level as possible. I'm almost sure that's the cause. Hope it helps, good luck!

AaweE1 (author)2015-11-19

why are all the parts more expensive if I buy them separate when a fully built mini quad copter costs $13 from them the board itself is like $12

MNScienceUK (author)2015-11-17

Please send me a private message with a quote for one of these pre made posted to UK. Best, MNS

MukulB (author)2015-10-31

can i use KK Multicopter V5.5 Flight Controller Xcopter V2.9

MukulB (author)MukulB2015-10-31

hey dude!! Is it necessary to use esc's(electronic speed controller)..
please tell me,i am new to this..

ulfulf (author)2015-10-15

Wesely, cool job !

I have been looking for a good, cheap and easy method to mount the main hubsan X4 (mainboard/flightcontroller or whatever is the right word for it and it's motors) on something else that the original "fuselage".

Your method seems to be nice, especially i think of more than only having the X4 electronics to be mounted on such a lego frame, i have a 7.4 volts toy quadcopter with brushed motors here which is damaged, but electronics are okay. So i am thinking i could use your lego method on this one probably.

This leads me to my question: I have read what you did and the comments several times, but i did not find WHICH Lego parts you use ! I remember LEGO very good from my childhood and still much of them here on the attic, but those LEGOs are different, they don't have that holes inside. Please, can you exactly decribe WHICH LEGOs you use, a part number or name of that series would be helpful !

Thank you very much !

Weseley (author)ulfulf2015-10-17

Thank you Ulfulf!

The ones with the holes in it is Lego Technic. I found a website where you can get them. http://www.brickowl.com/catalog/lego-red-technic-b... or google "lego technic brick 1 x 6" . Guaranteed to find something there. If you have some lego on the attic you probably already have the rest of the parts because they are very common. I you need more help I'll be happy to answer some further questions!

Good luck building!!

rony31 (author)2015-10-14

please explain the remote controller part............contact me at iamrohanvidhate@gmail.com

Weseley (author)rony312015-10-17

If you scroll down, there is a comment of me explaining how the remote works ;).

TaylanY1 (author)2015-10-14

Would this be able to hold a camera/webcam?

Weseley (author)TaylanY12015-10-17

Yes it is possible. A very light camera such as a keychain camera will work.

TheMaker123 (author)2015-09-17

Hi,

I have 7.4V battery.It is good instead of 3.7V battery ?

B3nB1 (author)2015-09-11

Where can i get the Materials?

dpohl (author)2015-07-24

Hi. Thanks so much for the inspirtion. I see on Banggood they currently have what they are calling a receiver, but not a controller. http://www.banggood.com/Hubsan-X4-H107C-RC-Quadcop...

Could this piece serve as the controller? If not, is the receiver an optional addition?

I am also considering getting this camera. http://www.banggood.com/Hubsan-X4-H107C-RC-Quadcop...

andyys0079 (author)2015-07-18

andyys0079 (author)2015-07-18

bzylka (author)2015-07-07

Thanks for this amazing project. I am having some issues with flight stability. Do you have any suggestions. Thank you. Here is the video of my build. https://youtu.be/RadPd1OrpR0

Weseley (author)bzylka2015-07-09

To bad, your video isn't working... I'm really curious about your build. Instability can be caused by numerous things. You should read a comment I made 2 months a go. It covers all common instability issues. But if you try to post your video again, maybe I can see what's the problem.

bzylka (author)Weseley2015-07-11

Hi Wesley,

I was able to fix everything after your recommendation.

Thanks.

DastM (author)2015-07-01

how do you charge the battery?

Weseley (author)DastM2015-07-09

You can charge the battery with something like this: http://www.banggood.com/4-In-1-X4-Battery-Charger-...

bzylka (author)2015-07-07

Mahesh barvadiya 1 (author)2015-07-06

Can u also plzz send pictures for 107c about how to fix the camera

Mahesh barvadiya 1 (author)2015-07-06

I am from India and I am not getting that 107c on amazon what should I do ???

rpotts2 (author)2015-06-25

Pretty cool build! I have an old Heliquad Blade Runner I've been eying. Might be time to dust it off and take it apart...

As far as putting a camera on, don't be afraid to take the case off folks. most of the weight in those key fobs is the shell.

BobPwnsMC. (author)2015-06-17

What about ESC's?

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