The steps below are not necessarily required as this Flight Controller (FC) can technically be flown “out of the box”. They are however highly recommended for anyone unfamiliar with setting up this particular FC or experiencing configuration issues.
These steps should be completed before motors or any other accessories are attached to the FC and before any physical or software changes are made to the FC. If you encounter any problems completing any of these steps, please contact PicnicQuads@gmail.com before proceeding.
When working with this FC, ensure USB and Battery power are never connected the same time.
1. Bind Transmitter
Ensure Transmitter is capable of, and set to DSM2 protocol.
Connect the FC to a PC via a micro B usb cable.
FC will initialize bind sequence (red light blinks fast) approximately 10 seconds after it’s powered on.
When FC is in bind state, initialize bind sequence on Transmitter
Note: if fast blinking does not change immediately after bind sequence, it’s recommended to reposition the transmitter and quickly restart the Tx bind. This may take multiple attempts. Binding is not complete until Red light on the FC is solid.
2. Ensure FC is recognized by PC
With the FC connected to PC,
In Device Manager – Ports (COM & LPT), ensure “Silicon Labs CP210X USB to UART Bridge” is displayed similar to below:
Note COM # may differ
If not found, install CP210X drivers for the PC being used.
Drivers can currently be found at: https://www.silabs.com/products/mcu/Pages/USBtoUARTBridgeVCPDrivers.aspx
or web search for “CP210X Drivers”
3. Ensure Clean Flight is installed (Google Chrome required)
*Note, if Cleanflight 2.0 or above is installed it will not likely connect to the stock flash installed on the flight controller. Instructions to install an earlier version of the Cleanflight configurator or update the flash on the flight controller are available at: http://picnicquads.com/cleanflight-2-0/
4. Check Transmitter stick travels
Launch Clean Flight configurator
Ensure FC is connected to PC and bound to transmitter.
Click connect button (upper right)
Go to the Receiver Tab
Verify stick travels respond correctly to transmitter stick inputs – Values should increase when sticks go up or to the right. If not, travel must be reversed on Transmitter.
Note: Yaw and Roll often have to be reversed
If any stick inputs don’t match the proper channel (roll, pitch, yaw, throttle) they can be re-mapped by changing the “TAER” text in the channel map, then saved.
5: Verify Arming/disarming
As supplied the FC is Armed/Disarmed using stick inputs
Ensure pitch roll stick is centered
Ensure minimum throttle value is below 1100 (trim/subtrim can be used to fix this)
Apply full right Yaw – Green light on FC should illuminate solid (armed)
Apply full left Yaw – Green light on FC should go out (disarmed)
If not, increase Transmitter stick travel/rate until arming/disarming works consistently.
If this is not possible and an AUX switch is available, it can be assigned to arm/disarm in the Modes tab.
If the stick travels are correct and the FC will not arm, go to the Setup tab and complete an accelerometer calibration with the FC held level and stable then retry.
Note: FC will auto disarm after approximately 10 seconds of no throttle input.
6. FC is ready to fly!
Install FC into frame and make any required connections for power and motors (propeller rotational direction is indicated in configuration tab).
Ensure it is initialized on a level/stable surface.
Default flight mode is Angle (self leveling), use the Modes tab to adjust.
If Angle mode is disabled Rate (Arco) mode will be enabled
AUX transmitter channels may also be assigned to select between modes
Rates can be adjusted using RC rates shown in step 4 or Roll, Pitch Yaw rate values in the PID tuning Tab shown below