Make Your Own Removable Drone With Arduino




Intro: Make Your Own Removable Drone With Arduino

Are you one of those people who are interested in building a drone? If so, welcome to my Drone Project!

I'll teach you how to make your own removable and personalized drone which you're going to control your drone by using and Android Phone.

For this project, we're going to use Arduino, AppInventor and SolidWorks or SketchUp.

There are four essential parts to consider:

1 - The Chassis

1.1 - The Central part

1.2 - The Legs

1.3 - The Linkers

2 - The Hardware

3 - The Arduino program

4 - The App

Let's get started!

And remember, in case you have doubts, do not hesitate to contact me!

Step 1: What to Use?

Let's see what we are going to use for our project:

1 - Software:

1.1 - Arduino program.

1.2 - SolidWorks.

I've chosen this program because I think it's really good, but you can use the program you want.

1.3 - AppInventor.

This program allows us to create an App to control our drone.


2 - Hardware:

2.1 - Arduino 101.

The reason why we're using arduino Board is quite important. This new board includes the accelerometer and the bluetooth inside. In addition to that, It's cheaper than buying an Arduino UNO and the two components mentioned above separately. Let's not forget that Arduino 101 is going to be the brain of the drone.

2.2 - The Accelerometer.

As mentioned before, if you buy Arduino 101 you'll have the accelerometer inside. Let me remind you that the accelerometer is the one that calibrate and stabilize our drone to avoid possible accidents.

2.3 - The Bluetooth.

As the accelerometer, it's include into the Arduino 101 Board. The Bluetooth will allow us to communicate the Arduino with the Mobile App.

2.4 - The Motors.

We are going to buil a quadcopter so we need 4 motors. As we are doing our drone with a 3D printer, it'll be very light so we don't need a very powerful motors. In my case, I've chosen "Turnigy D2830-11 1000kv Brushless". It has the right potential and it's not expensive at all.

2.5 - The ESC's.

The ESC's are the Electronic Speed Controllers. The are who managed the quantiti of energy that arrives to the motors. In my case I've selected "Turnigy Multistar 20A 2V" because they're ideal for our motors.

2.6 - The Battery.

This component will feed our Hardware with energy. The battery has to be LiPo. "AeroEnergy 1200mAh LiPo".has the necessary potential to feed the motors and the Arduino so it's appropiate.

2.7 - The Propellers.

The propellers are coupled to the motors so, as they spin, the drone will ascends. Let me remind you that the size of it has to be proportional to the size of the drone.

2.8 - Cables.

A big number of cables are required for our construction.

Step 2: The Chassis

Now we're going to start doing the chassis of the drone. As I said before, we're going to need a removable, light and useful chasis. Let's start by doing the central part.

Step 3: The Central Part

The central part of the drone has should be the size of Arduino 101. To work on this part, we need simple gadgets to link the legs. Apart from that, let's not forget aesthetics is important, too.

I decided to build an octahedron. See the image attached.

- There are two trapezoid holes in the base of the piece. The cables are passing through these holes. Doing so, we'll reach better aesthetics.

- We can also see some high points at the base to couple the Arduino Board.

- On the edges of the piece que have some rectangular holes. The legs need to be fixed to these holes. (We'll see it later)

Step 4: The Legs

The drone legs of the drone are going to hold the motors and the ESC's. That's why we need light, esthetical and coupeable legs for it.

Have a look at the image and see the result.

- The circular part is where the motors are held. It has a hole at the base where the cables pass trought.

- At the other extreme of the leg, we have a high point which is used to join the central part. It looks like a puzzle. (We will see it at the end)

- There is also a vertical fragment that holds the central part into the air to avoid the contact with the floor. It also evades psossible accidents.

- The ESC's will be under the leg, where we can't see it. This will improve our estethic.

Step 5: The Linkers

Now that we have the central part designated and the four legs of the drone ready, we can connect each fragment. But, be careful, you need to make sure these legs won't separate from the central part. That's why the four linkers are required.

These linkers, as you can see in the image, have a "T" shape which helps to prevent from possible accidents.

Step 6: The Final Chassis

Now we only have to build the chassis. As I said, it's like a puzzle, not difficult at all. See the images.

Step 7: The Hardware

The chassis is built so let's design the hardware.

First, locate Arduino board into the central part. Then, set the four motors into the circular parts of the legs. Once we have this, we're going to link the motors with the Arduino Board by using the ESC's. Finally, we are going to connect the battery.

We're going to connect each motor cable with the ESC cables. Two motors are going to be connected with the same colors, and the others to are going to be connected in the reverse way (As you can see in the photo).

Then, we need to tie the red ESC's cables to the battery. Afterwards, the black cables should hoin the Ground Pin (GND) to Arduino. Finally, the last cable of the ESC is going to be connected to the pins number 3, 5, 6 and 9.t

Don't forget to connect the battery to the Arduino.

That's all that we have to do with the hardware part. Easy, isn't it?

Step 8: The Arduino Program

I've divided the Software into 3 parts:

- The motors

- The accelerometer

- The Bluetooth connection

Here is the programe!

Step 9: The App

The App has been created using AppInventor. The connection between the arduino antd the App has been designed following the ASCII code (you can see it in the photo). That's because we're using a BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy). I hope you like my App...

Here you have it!

Step 10: You've Done It by Your Own

The total cost of the drone is approximately 150€.

Thank you for visiting my blog and I hope you'll done some improves on my project!



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    29 Discussions


    Question 21 days ago on Step 10

    will it be possible to get the .aia file from the MIT AI2?



    Question 6 months ago

    Hello David,

    How can I open the .APK file on my laptop (Windows) or smartphone (Android)?


    Bram Visser

    1 more answer

    Question 7 months ago

    Hey , good evening man ! I really liked you project... But I'm kinda confused .... do you have the wiring diagram?


    1 year ago

    Hi! Can you give a wiring diagram just so I can see more? Could you also include a coding file in English?


    1 year ago

    thank you so much :D

    "Afterwards, the black cables should hoin the Ground Pin (GND) to Arduino"

    wich black cable you are talking about ?

    4 replies

    Reply 1 year ago

    Hi anime-1!

    Thank you too!!

    The ESC's have a cople of cables. On one side they have 3 cables that are connected to the motors. On the other side they have three cables: one red cable (we have to connect it to the battery), one black cable (we have to connect it to the batery also (that is not the cable you are talking about) and finally, a multiple cable in the middle. This multiple cable has 3 cables: the one you are talking about is usually black, but it can also be brown. That cable has to be connected to the GND!

    Hope is useful! Have fun!


    Reply 1 year ago

    thank you so much

    but we have only 1 GND . and 4 ESC's ?


    Reply 1 year ago

    That is not a probem! You can do lot of different things to solve that. For example, you can use a PinBoard as I did (you can see it in the final image) or you can also fix the 4 cables...

    If you have any problem, be free to contact with me!

    Hope its useful!


    Reply 1 year ago

    Yes thanks a lot . If you don't mind you can give your facebook ? To make it easy to contact you .

    arosh dimantha

    1 year ago

    oh thanks , i appreciate your project very much. but small problem, in my country its difficult to find an arduino 101, if you can please upload codings relevant for arduino UNO R3, accelerometer, and HC-05 bluetooth module seperately.

    3 replies
    Davidquincoarosh dimantha

    Reply 1 year ago

    Is it very difficult to find an Arduino 101 in my country, too. I bought thi Arduino in the official page or Arduino, so they send it to me.

    If you can't find any 101, I'll work for your project with R3.

    Thank you!

    arosh dimanthaDavidquinco

    Reply 1 year ago

    I has the all parts that needed to do this project with arduino uno r3, like accelerometer and HC-5 bluetooth module. just only I need the codings for the project. I need your help. please give me the codes for arduino uno r3. thank you!

    arosh dimanthaDavidquinco

    Reply 1 year ago

    oh thanks! but i like to do this project from R3 its easy to me. can you give me the code for arduino uno R3 project and the circuit diagram?

    Davidquincoarosh dimantha

    Reply 1 year ago

    Hi arosh dimantha!

    All you need to do is to upload the file in your drive and then, download it using the phone!

    If It doesnˋt work, tell me something and I will help you.

    Have fun!

    Davidquincoarosh dimantha

    Reply 1 year ago

    No, it only works with Android devices. I've changed my smartphone to an iphone, so I'm trying to redo the App for IOS, but It's really dificult.

    I will snd you the file if i can do something.

    Thank you!


    1 year ago

    Thanks for sharingg i appreciate this project too much ... why u havent add the gps ? And is it possible to use it with arduino ? I do have an orher question pls mission planner is it used with all kinds of drones ? Thanks in advance !

    1 reply

    Reply 1 year ago

    Hi Fatima-ezzahraS!

    I'm very glad that you like my project! Thank you too!

    Adding a gps to my drone was not in the scope of the project, but I think is a great idea. I am thinking about adding it.

    Before doing my project I saw another ones and yes, you can use gps with Arduino, but you have to buy it.

    About mission planner, I don't know anything abou it because I've never programmed a gps... I'm sorry.

    Thank you!