The fpv-geeks decided to build a new small and foldable quadcopter – the Hobbyking Predator 650, for future sports footage filming and picture taking. We ordered two frame kits from Hobbyking.com (Product ID: 9323000072-0) shortly after the announcement of the new frame. This is a small builtlog plus timelapse video of the 650 sized frame with the promising name Predator.
First of all, the package is pretty small compared to the size of the final unfolded frame. So don’t be disappointed when you receive the package. The frame’s material is approximately 85% carbon fibre, 10% aluminum and 5% plastics (not considered the screw and bolts). The carbon fibre parts are cut very precisely and the holes and drillings are placed with surprisingly low tolerances. So generally, all parts fit together very well and no rework has to be done to adjust positions of join the parts. Compared to some other Chinese kits this is a bliss. But still, I can not conclude without mentioning some shortcomings of the design. Whereas for most of the screw joints (and there are MANY of them, approx. 150) the process is straightforward, some screws and even parts or sub-components could only be fitted if you unscrew or disassemble parts of your previous built. And this is a bit annoying. In some cases a more detailed built description could have solved the problem, in some cases minor design flaws are the reason for that. All in all it took me about 3.5 hours of casual building, from which 30-40 minutes came from the described lack of built description or design quality. If you are super-fast, you could maybe do it in 2 hours.
Finally, the final quadcopter is somewhat robust and stiff. The folding mechanism seems smart and well designed. A stiffer quad at this size and weight level is hard to be found on the current market. Our orders for ESCs, motors, camera gimbals and controllers are still underway. As soon as we have the rest of the equipment we will post further details on the built process as well as the flight performance of the frame.
For all of you who want to follow the whole process within just 1.5 minutes, please enjoy the timelapsed video of my built.