Introduction: Lego Tricopter Tilt

About: I am an engineer at heart with a passion for the outdoors.

The tricopter is an aerial vehicle much like the more popular quadcopter. Unlike the quadcopter which uses the speed of two motors to turn, tricopters use a servo driven tail to turn. The use of directing the airflow from the propeller instead of torque causes the aircraft to swoop in turns and altogether fly smoother. The main issue with the tricopter is the tilt itself, because the tilt is so complicated it often scares people to attempt to build a tricopter.

The reason I made this instructable was because I want everyone to be able to experience the tricopter without having to buy one. Most other scratchbuilt tilts require hard to find parts, and can be broken in a hard crash.

This tilt uses readily available parts and can be made with a minimal amount of tools. I have not flown this yet(waiting on an order from hobbyking) but I will give an update when I do have a chance to fly it.

Step 1: Gather Tools and Materials

For this project you will need the following materials
1. Two thin lego pieces 2x4 with eight pegs
2.Two 1x2 Legos with the circular holes
3. Two 1x2 Legos with the + like holes
4. Two thin 1x2 Legos
5. The servo of your choice
(I do not recommend using the turnigy 9 grams, they will work for a while but will wear out. I had a bunch lying around so I used one)
6.Your choice of glue
7. Zip ties
8. Lego technic rod

I want everyone to experience this type of vehicle, so even though I used a dremel, the following can also be used.
1. dremel with sandpaper bit
2. x-acto knife
3. box cutter
4. file

The following tolls are required
1. 5/64inch drill bit
2.drill or other drilling device

Step 2: Rough Layout

Just so that you get the idea, go ahead and put the pieces together in the correct order.

Step 3: Cut the Pieces

In the photos you will see that certain parts of the bricks are marked black, these parts are what need to be taken off. In both of the 2x1 pieces it applies to both of that type while on the 2x4 pieces are cut differently. As you can see you can use multiple tools to get the same product.

Step 4: Assembly

Now that your pieces are cut, go ahead and assemble a follows, don't forget to glue each piece together.
1. Take the 2x1 pieces with circular holes and glue them onto the correct spots on the 4x2 piece with only 4 pegs cut off
2. Take the 2x1 pieces with the cross like holes and glue them onto the thin 2x1 pieses. Then glue those onto the bottom of the 4x2 piece with all pegs cut off.
3. Next go ahead and push the rod through the pieces, and cut the rod to the correct length.

Step 5: Attach the Servo

Now we are going to attach the servo to the tilt. When drilling and attaching the servo to the tilt it will be connected to the 2x1 piece with the hole like a cross.
1. Center your servo
2. Cut down the proper piece to the right shape and size
3. Drill a hole to expand the hole for the screw
4. Line up the center hole of the servo horn with the rod and mark where the hole you just drilled ends up
5. Drill roughly half of a centimeter deep in that spot
6. Attach the servo horn to the servo so that it looks like a V when the servo is held in the position it will be placed in
7. Apply glue to the horn and screw the servo horn in to the hole with one of the screws that come with the servo at the same time.
8. Now take your motor mount and attach it to the tilt with glue and zip ties or just zip tie the motor directly to the tilt
9. Attach the tilt to your tricopter arm with glue or zip ties (I recommend zip tieing the servo to the boom.)

Step 6: Thanks

Thank you to every one who built this tilt. If you build this please leave a comment on your findings and also post any issues that you have with the tilt and I will do my best to fix it and share the solution. One again I have not yet flown this but I will be shure to post an update once I try it. This was my first instructable so please of you see anything I could improve on, let me know in the comments.

Step 7: Update

I have flown the tricopter and it flies great. this is my first multirotor so I have had my fair share of crashes but fortunately the tilt has survived everything. The first issue I had was the servo, this is why it is important to use a metal gear servo. Once again I would like to thank you for reading this instructable and hopefully trying it. This instructable is entered in the robotics and tech contests so please if you like this instructable please vote for it to help me to develop more things like this.

Tech Contest

Participated in the
Tech Contest

Robotics Contest

Participated in the
Robotics Contest