X-UAV MINI TALON
In my opinion, the X-UAV Mini Talon is hands down the best fixed wing FPV platform on the market. Most molded EPO fixed wings are either over built or lack the essential features for advanced FPV flying. Here, I go over some of the customizations I designed to take advantage of the Mini Talon’s flight performance.
With its large wing and pusher configuration, the Mini Talon has a lot of features that make it the best flying piece of foam I’ve ever owned. Some of my favorite features are as follows:
EXTREMELY stable and maneuverable. This plane can be dialed back for level smooth long range flight, but has wing, tail, and fuselage sizing that enable exciting aerobatics. Rolls extremely well and holds inverted with minimal elevator input. This is also do in part to its rigid assembly, as carbon fiber reinforcements span the entire fuselage, wing, and tail feathers.
Payload efficient. With a 6000mah 4s configuration, I comfortably achieve 40 minute flight times. Landings are fast and must be done with caution, but well worth the flight envelope.
Highly customizable. My favorite part of this build was designing canopies that fit what I enjoy the most about fixed wing FPV. Many other printable parts can be found on Thingiverse including landing skids, vtx mounts, and spring loaded latches. Mark Q’s (http://www.itsqv.com/QVM/index.php?title=Main_Page) parts are incredibly well designed and fitted to the Mini Talon. I am using his nose and rear landing skids along with his fc mount.
Pairs great with Eagle Tree Vector. Since its maiden, the Talon has had many instances of video or radio signal loss, and the Vector has done a flawless job in RTH mode. Additionally, altitude hold is great for letting go of the sticks and enjoying the view.
Motor: Sunnysky x2212 1250kv with 8x6 APC
ESC: Castle 50 amp
FC: Eagle Tree Vector
VTX and VRX: 1.2ghz
RX and TX: Full size Crossfire
VRX Antenna: VAS 1.2ghz Pepper Box
VTX Antenna: Custom 1.2ghz IBcrazy Inverted Vee
VTX Antena Build instructions link: https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?1159968-Build-your-own-TX-antenna-for-FPV
My first idea was to design a canopy that housed a 3 axis gimbal for a GoPro session, but after a couple flights of not so satisfying footage, I decided I would design a more conventional FPV canopy that utilized gearing for extended travel and a switchable camera setup for redundancy and viewing angle. After determining the max travel of a Hitec HS-425BB servo, a three to one gear ratio was implemented for 280 deg of travel.
The canopy utilizes a hollow shaft so the micro cams power and video wires can be fed through without the risk of being caught or tangled. Two large inner diameter bearings were used to attach the smaller pinion gear to the outer housing. All hardware is M2 and M3 and the only bolts used are for the plate used to attach canopy to the fuselage, everything else is threaded into the plastic for weight savings.
Pictured below are all the components required for assembly. Everything is printable apart from the bearings and servo.
For my ground station, the VAS pepper box antenna was so large, I decided I would use the back of it to mount the batter, vrx and 5.8ghz repeater. A low pass filter was used to prevent cross over interference between the 900mhz crossfire and 1.2ghz video system.
The 5.8ghz repeater houses a small 25mw transmitter, an LED voltage read out, and a blower fan I pulled of a CR-10 extruder to prevent the vtx from over heating. The 5.8ghz repeater is a must have in my opinion, as it allows for more distance between the 1.2ghz receiver and 900mhz radio. It also allows for compatibility with any 5.8ghz receivers or goggles which is great when there is spectators around.
My most recent canopy variation is one designed to house an DJI Osmo Pocket. Although the gimbal is not controllable during flight, the resultant footage is similar to a multirotor and is very stable when the aircraft maintains relatively level flight. There is definitely a future for fixed wing aircraft with mechanical video stabilization.