So since i started flying my UAV around i always fly in the same place because i don't have a safe way to move the drone. A proper Drone hardcase is expensive and hard to come by in my area so i decided to make one. So whoever feels the same this is how i made mine.
Material for the project:
- Hard plastic box - 8$
- Foam - 8$
- Screws and Bolts - 60Cents
- Black Spray paint(optional) - 4$
- Old belt - Free
- Xacto Knife - Free
- Ruler - Free
- Rubber foam tape(Optional) - Free
- Multitool - Free
- Hex tools - Free
- Paper tape - Free
- Black permanent marker - Free
- A electrical drill - Free
Some things i changed along the way, others i realized i shouldn't have done but hey... learning from my mistakes also.
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Step 1: Cutting the Foam to Size
According tho the size box i cut foam blocks that fin in it, i actually missed once and cut a piece that was to small so make sure you have the right measurements.
For my box, which was 20cm high, i had to cut two pieces of 10cm thick foam;
Step 2: Organize/arrange Positions
So because my box i just about the size on the original drone box, i decided to make a double layer case, by putting the most important stuff on the bottom and the remainder of the stuff on top;
So on the bottom i'll put the Drone, the R/C, the battery charger, the Camera and guimbal, the Flight log, the cables, accessories and spares;
On top I'll put the props in use, and the prop-guards;
I started by preparing the position of the Drone by cutting the foam using the Xacto knife, to accommodate the landing gear;
Then i cut a place for the battery charger and the RC;
When working with foam it's important not to make holes that go all the way trough, because the foam will lose integrity and collapse, so make cuts that will receive the items without cutting too much;
After that i cut a hole for the camera, and did small cuts for the rest of the things;
Step 3: Top Layer
So i prepared the top layer to better fit the box, and removed excess foam so it fits without putting too much pressure on the drone and RC sticks;
After that i prepared a area for the props, the prop-guards will fit nicely since the top layer is thin and bends to accommodate the drone underneath;
Step 4: Making It P(practical)
This step is optional, and after awhile i realized i could have saved some work by cutting some steps;
Taped the top of the bottom part of the case with paper tape, so when i paint the box I'll be able to stick the rubber foam tape;
Drilled the holes for the handles, on on the Lid so i can carry the Case as a tool-case, and one on the side so i can carry it as a suitcase;
Step 5: Making It P(pretty)
This was the most useless step of all, if i only knew i wouldn't have done it.
I decided to paint the box black, so that the bad cuts on the foam wouldn't be visible, but since the plastic was so smooth by the end of the project the pain was peeling off(Bummer), so if its the case for YOU, buy a black case don't paint a transparent one;
Painted the case black on the inside to preserve the pain from use/ware, the idea was just to hide the ugly foam cuts and not to make the box completely black;
Sticked the rubber tape to reduce the air gap between the bottom and lid of the case making the box more water/dust resistant(not proof);
Step 6: Bringing It All Together
So i bolted the handles made of the old belt using the hex tools in place trough the holes i did previously , the bolts on the inside have a nut lock so they don't get loose;
After that i reassembled the foam and tested the handles for the weight to see if it handled it... It did marvelously;
Step 7: A Drone Hardcase for 20$
Its not a pelican but it's at least a sparrow. Both handles can handle the weight, the foam protects the contents and now i can finally take my drone to fly in other places besides my yard, and all for only 20$;
The only item that i did not accommodate in the box was the battery, since LiPos tend to misbehave, the last thing i want is a burning battery inside a hard case made mostly from highly flammable materials, so until i get a metal box for the LiPos these won't be in the case;
This is probably not the only DIY Drone case around, but this is how i did it, hope its a useful project in case someone who is in a budget or can't have a real one(Case) delivered to him (like me) gets to have a safe place to store and carry his drone.