Mare Island: Tricopter FPV

7 March 2013

I guess this is my first post of the year! I have been busy, making and modifying a lot of things. One of which is a better method for eliminating vibrations on my Turnigy Talon tricopter.

I ordered a 2nd camera plate and cut it in half. Drilled a few more mounting holes to the underside of my tri and am now mounting my flight battery and GoPro Hero3 on the same anti-vibration silicone bobbins from GetFPV.com. The added mass of the battery makes it really hard for the vibrations to get through to the camera.

I am also now flying with the RangeLink LRS radio system, through my Spektrum DX8. I haven’t range tested it yet but I had a close call when I lost signal about 3/4 of a mile out with my DX8 only. Decided it was time to look at something that would help boost my range.

Here are some pics of the new anti-vibe setup and a video I recently shot at Mare Island, a decaying naval base in Vallejo, CA.


  • Turnigy Talon tricopter frame
  • RC Timer 20A SimonK firmware ESCs
  • OpenPilot CC3D flight controller
  • Cobra 2213-26 motors
  • Turnigy TGY-306G tail servo
  • APC 9×4.7 props
  • Turnigy Nano-Tech 4S 3300mAh lipos
  • ImmersionRC 5.8GHz FPV
  • Fatshark Dominator video goggles
  • RangeLink LRS Radio with a Spektrum DX8

  • jacob

    I love going to mare island. I’m just around the corner and once I get my quad going I’m sure to visit. You should go to the top of mount made island you could get some awesome shots.

  • rommel

    nice job. I actually live here in Mare Island. Just a question, how much does it cost you to build your copter? Is this from scratch or did you buy a copter and just modified it. Thanks.

    • Just the tricopter ~$500
      Control radio (remote control) ~$350
      GoPro Hero3 Black Edition $400
      Wireless video setup + video goggles I pilot the copter via ~$600
      Batteries + charger ~$200

      The time it takes to learn to fly well & build/configure/repair all this, at least a year. I built all of it from scratch other than the frame which is sold as a kit.

  • David Rumble

    I also have the Talon Tri. I use a simple gimbal that is used solely for tilting the gopro.
    I simply attach the gimbal with cable ties and wood with silicon gel adhesive strips. I get good video but was wondering if your modification is worth doing. What are you thoughts?

    • My mod has been working out great, it really reduces the vibrations significantly.

  • Jr. Bird Man

    Just saw this. Strangley enough I worked at Mare Island years ago and am looking to build a quad. I’d love to meet up with you at some point and discuss the good, bad and ugly on building one. I’m in Vacaville and would love to visit the flying site there some time. I’m curently flying at the Vacaville field on Cement Hill Rd., 5 min off the I-80.

    • Awesome, I have been planning to return to Mare Island soon to shoot a part 2! You can contact me at steve@hovership.com

  • Nice editing and post processing skills. Digging that color grading, (gsg looks if my eye is correct?)

    Your tri is so smooth Love that this is CC3D

    • Thanks, I use magic bullet looks with custom presets I design

Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter
Turnigy Talon Tricopter