Introduction: Drone Attachments (Make It Move)

I created some attachments that can be fitted to a small racing drone and made to function with a simple servo. The first one is a release mechanism. It uses a servo to pull a small rod from the frame, dropping whatever was hanging on to it. The second device is a gimbal. To counter the pitch and roll of the drone, the servo tilts the camera's frame to keep it level and get better shots. The gimbal is designed to fit a Hero 7 without adding too much weight. I printed and attached them to my own drone and was able to drop a small payload remotely.



Servo (I used a 9g)

a couple of screws or an adhesive

**Note** All photos and videos are my own

Step 1: Step 1: the Release Mechanism

Looking around the internet, I found that the most popular release mechanism design was one involving a rod being pulled from the frame, opening the loop, and letting the hanging payload slide off.

Measure the space on the bottom of your drone and create a base plate, a rectangle 3-4mm thick so it's light and strong.

Add some holes for the screws that fit into the base. My drone had some spare screw holes, so I put 3mm holes for the 3mm screws.

Once you have the base, measure your servo and put two vertical squares exactly that far apart, so the servo fits with no room for movement.

Last, Measure the servo arm and rod to see where the arm would lie when in the closed position, and put a hollow cube to hold it. When the arm is pulled from the cylinder, it falls and the payload slides off it.

Step 2: Step 2: the Release Box

For the box in the pictures, I just used a Tinkercad default box, made it lighter and bigger by hollowing out the lid, and added a hook to the top. It would be around 4 inches.

To create it, drag the box form onto the workplane, duplicate it, and turn one into a lid.

Take the lid and put a square hole into the middle of it, effectively hollowing it out. This saves weight and filament.

Drag a ring onto the workplane and cut it in half. This is the hook for the rod on the release mechanism.

Group the hook atop the box.

When you finished all of this, scale up the box and lid to the size you want (I did 4 inches).

This is the end of the release mechanism.

Step 3: Installation

To install the release mechanism, solder the positive, negative, and signal wires to the 5v, G, and LED pads on your flight controller.

To program it, you have to enter Betaflight and set it up from there.

Steps are:

Turn on servo tilt

Open CLI and change LED STRIP 1 or equivalent to SERVO 1

Create a servo in the Expert Mode Servo tab and assign it a switch.

Step 4: The Camera Gimbal

I needed a suitable design for a simple, cheap, servo - powered gimbal to keep a GoPro stable in flight, and all the designs on the internet were too complicated. I decided to make a small frame on which a servo is attached, which tilts an interior frame that contains the GoPro.

Take four rectangles of the size of the drone frame and group them with the correct screw hole size.

Add two holes on either side, one rectangle hole for the servo, and one cylindrical hole for the spindle.

Create an L shaped frame that would fit the camera you are using and create two arms on either side, one for the servo arm to attach two and another with a solid cylinder that fits into the cylindrical hole on the outside. This is the rotating support that allows the camera to rotate.

The gimbal has not been tested yet but would fit a Gopro hero 3,4,5,6,7, or 8.

Installation is the same as before, just add a camstab range and it functions as a gimbal.

Tinkercad Student Design Contest

Participated in the
Tinkercad Student Design Contest