Introduction: How to Make and Design a FPV Obstacle Course for Quadcopters
So a while ago I was flying in my backyard with my larva x and it was a ton of fun. I had so much fun I reached a point where I wanted to complicate things a bit more for it was getting too easy I felt. I came up with a plan for a fpv course for my larva x and it seems to have worked out very well. There are a few things you will need to build this.
- Foam noodles. (You will need two foam noodles for every gate and one foam noodle for every flag.)
- 3/4 inch pvc pipe. (You will need 18 inches for every gate and 6 inches for every flag.)
- You will need a hammer for this.
- Something to cut the pvc pipe with.
Step 1: Gates Vs Flags
Gates you are supposed to go inside and come out the other end in a specific direction. Failure to do this if you are racing with friends or just doing laps with yourself that are timed will result in you needing to go through the gate correctly to proceed to the next part of the course. The reason for this is because if you are doing laps with friends you could crash into them. Another reason is you don't want to do the course backwards or change direction mid race.
Flags you are supposed to go around in a certain direction and come out of them in a specific place. Failure to do so is pretty much is the exact same thing with gates. You want to go through a flag either from the left or right and you want to exit the flag either from the left or right.
Everything depends on the course layout and how you are supposed to go through the course.
Step 2: Gate Assembly
You will need the following.
- Two foam noodles.
- 18 inches of 3/4 inch pvc.
- PVC cutting tool.
For the assembly...
- You will need to cut the pvc into three 6 inch sections with the pvc cutting tool.
- Connect the two foam noodles with one of the sections of pvc. The pvc should fit inside the foam noodles no issues leaving you able to connect them both together.
- Hammer two sections into the ground approximately three feet apart.
- Connect one end of the pvc to one of the sections that are in the ground and the other section to the other end.
Step 3: Flag Assembly
- Hammer a 6 inch pvc section into the ground.
- Stick a foam noodle over it.
And you just made a flag! It was that easy!
Step 4: Planning the Course!
When I planned my course I already knew my surroundings and how they would play good together. I had already flew my larva x so many times in my yard I could kind of guess how things would play well together.
Let's say you didn't know the area that well. I would say start wondering around the area and try seeing what would probably work and what wouldn't. Try to keep in mind the limitations of the FPV camera, trees, other obstacles, safety, and difficulty when planning the course.
- FPV camera can't pick up things like the human eye can. A dead tree branch with no leaves you wouldn't really see unless it was three feet away from you. Try to keep that in mind.
- Trees can play very well in the planning of an FPV course but they can also do the opposite. Depending on the density of trees they can interfere with the range of your craft by absorbing the Video signals and the Transmitter signals. So watch out! Not only that but think about it. A tree would make a good flag wouldn't you say?
- You want to be flying as far away from people as possible depending on the size of the craft. So make sure you aren't crashing into people by planning ahead in the course layout.
- Don't make your course so easy that people get bored flying it. Don't make it so hard nobody can complete it. Just keep this in mind.
The start and finish zone is where everyone starts and finishes at. I tend to find a wide open area for starting off of. Think of it as the start and finish line during a drag race except this is more of an area versus a line.
Step 5: Troubleshooting
- Make sure you disassemble the course when you are done using it. Otherwise you will run into issues where wind will warp the foam tubes.
- If something doesn't work out well rearrange it. Hence why planning is important.
- Hammer your pipe straight into the ground as possible. Failure to do so will result in floppy looking gates and flags.
- Make sure you walk through how to go through the course prior to racing people through it.
Step 6: Have at It!
I am looking forward to have races at my house with friends after covid is over. Who knows we could have a multi gp races hosted here if possible? Thanks for checking this out! Enjoy!
Participated in the
Make it Move Contest 2020