View Full Version : My Tarot 980mm Hex

23-10-2013, 09:17 AM
I had my first flight this week with my Tarot hex copter - it's 980mm motor centre-to motor centre, so it's over 1m wide. I went for the same motors as the rctimer S800, along with 15in carbon props.
Went for the WookongM and I'm using a Futaba 8FG Super with sbus reciever - so there's just 1 wire into the wookong to control everything I need.

Had to do a lot of work to wire this thing up nicely - all the wires run through the carbon frame and when there's 6 motors it soon gets mad. I had to build a small platform to both sandwich the wires down in the middle and also give a platform for the Wookong IMU.

There's surprisingly little room - almost none at all in fact - the hex is foldable including the landing gear so you can't put anything at all in most of the chassis.

All the wires run through to the rear, using the Tarot connector system, basically 6 holes to solder your motor wires in, and then another for the opposite wire. I drilled the centres out to simply solder some fat 10ga wire into the centre and then made up a wiring loom to go to the batteries (two 5000mah 6S - so 10000mah. I must have flown it for 20 minutes or so and I had to put 3750~ into each pack, with a gimbal under it, of course it'll not go that long.

Anyway, first time out it was windy as hell. This is in my garden with not a lot of space btw - since there's a huge tree. I tried a few times and pusseyd out.
20 minutes later the wind had calmed down a bit so I took it out again and after a few shakey moments managed to get it airborne. WOW - smoooooooth. I had GPS mode locked on and was shocked how quickly the thing could react, pretty amazing. Just hovering about 10ft up it really didn't get effected by the wind much at all. Steady as a beast.

I took it onto the back road - I live on a STEEP hill, so obviously I had to climb going up the road otherwise I'd faceplant it. Still in GPS mode I razzed it down the road and let off the sticks - the thing angled back to stop it's position and just sat there happily hovering.

This is when stuff went a bit bad - I was flying it up and down the road and taking it up and down vertically on the spot. I got a bit too cocky and didn't put the power on in time before it hit the ground. Sadly it's impossible to land on a slope so the front of the landing gear took a big hit and broke the T-connector to the main strut. A couple of blades had small chips but not enough to worry about. Phew.

Picked it up and put it back int he garden to fly round to the other side of the house and take it back inside. I took off and somehow never spotted that one of the motors was 90degrees!!! I'd obviously not tightened the mount up properly and in the hard landing it must have moved. So for a second the copter just went NUTS and I thought it would hit the garage but as soon as the wookong worked out something was wrong it shut down that motor and flew perfectly on 5 motors, I mean, perfectly.

It's a really nice piece of kit is the Tarot - it was that or a carbon concepts. I did want an S800 like everyone and I nearly bought one 2nd hand with the arms carbon wrapped because they are crap. Poor wires, dodgy connections and lots of vibrations are why I decided against a DJI S800.
The Tarot uses all 25mm carbon tubes and it's really stiff.
The batteries are over 1.5kg so it's not a light thing at all.

I bought some secraft machined alloy T-joints for the landing gear for now but my gimbal will have a 3-leg setup on it that rotates with the Yaw.

I'll be using the alexmos 3 axis from ArmBGC - I currently use it on my hand held filming gimbal so I know it works perfectly. I'll be switching the hand held to the Yun 3 axis controller and aerial pixels joystick with a smallHD 4" monitor on there too.

Gimbal wise for the chopper I'm using a brushless belt driven yaw, with direct brushless pitch and roll using 5208 150T motors all round which are OK.

Soon as I have the landing gear sorted and back on there I will get some pics. I'm wanting this to carry my panasonic GH3 with heavy glass. Dji Zenmuse can't handle quality glass because like the copter, it's made for dummies that don't know how to balance a camera gimbal. :woot:

This is my first copter - I've had the bits for quite a while but built it over last weekend. Really pleased with it. Go big or go home - I didn't see the point getting something smaller first since I want to use a heavy camera from the start.

23-10-2013, 10:25 AM
Sounds good Jimmy. Any photos of this beast?

23-10-2013, 11:45 AM
It's big. The wookong wiring needs a tidy and there's various LED wires hanging out - because I don't have the LED's yet. Oh and there's still zip ties on from the test flight to hold the cells as I don't have any velcro straps yet.

The lower gimbal mount has a battery holder at either end to balance it out - and I'll of course move things around once I've got the gimbal on there. But it's all rubber isolated which is always a good thing. Love this hex but you have no idea how expensive these things can be once you start - the frame was fairly cheap - the gimbal mount was extra as were the landing gear legs. The 6 motors, loads of wire, 40amp esc's, 12 CF blades (just in case) etc etc.
Even the batteries are a fortune for 6S.
I've built it properly though - all the wires that exit the folding arms are wrapped in that pastic meshy tube stuff and heat shrunk. It's just the finishing touches to tidy up the wookong and other wires that I need to do.




My wookongM has a 50 waypoint upgrade but I've no idea at all how it works or how to access it. Not sure I ever would need to mind you. With zero experience of this stuff the only thing I needed to look online for was how to bind the reciever! Everything else was pretty easy with the Futaba. I need to label the buttons tho as I've already forgotten what they do. :)

23-10-2013, 01:00 PM
Looks fantastic Jimmy, i'm getting a tarot quad soon the 650. As an upgrade from my dji 450. Would love to see some video from this beast.

23-10-2013, 01:03 PM
Like it! been looking at one of these for a while but would be wasted on me as i dont know what im doing all thing cameras etc...

Im sure you will be sorted but if you need any advice or a second opinion on its flight characteristics :blush: give me a shout, i'm only down the road at Penistown:thumbsup:

23-10-2013, 06:41 PM
Looks a bit shit to me Jimmy ;)

19-12-2013, 04:12 PM

I've kind of finished my Tarot 650 - looks like the kiddy version of yours :)

Question for you - on the motor mounts / clamp things - how the hell are you supposed to get them perfectly flat and level - is there a magic technique - or did you just do it by eye like I did?


19-12-2013, 04:46 PM
Straight edge/spirit level? When the legs are folded together line them up.

20-12-2013, 07:39 PM
I'm not folding the legs in - the clamps are silly tight - so I've wired / built it to not fold!
I used an app on the iPhone to level out the motors as best I can.
It will no doubt not be perfect - but I've do e my best;)