It all started this last summer…

The video

The previous post about this.. http://tommy-gunn.com/yes-or-no/

Me and my 8 year old son Jesse making the X-1
After watching the mars landing he asked me if we could make something like the “Mars curiosity” also… I thought about it for a second …Then I said sure why not! Even tho I did not have NASA’s billion dollar budget. Who am I to tell an 8 year old you can’t do something because it’s too hard!

I had never build a quadcopter before and this was not a kit. (Everyone said I should start with a kit)

So I order parts form china , Florida, Texas and other places all over the world.
but I told him if we do this project we can’t give up if it gets too hard… never give up.
Even if the project had failed at least he will walk away with that life lesson.

IMG_0394
My son built 80% of the x1 including the soldering and most of the wiring. I did the programming and very little wiring only and some cable management I like doing cable management.
IMG_0391The building of the x-1

So we had all these bags of screw, wires, frame parts and all kinds of gizmos and were were in the middle of no where with no internet connection!

Where to start? We started with the frame The frame we used had i swear seemed like it used 100 screws to put it together I said to Jesse start working on it we went over the drawing and he started putting it together HE had put Half the frame together then said can you help me? i said why is it too hard? no it just boring putting these screws in and it would go faster if you helped…I said ok and put my sandwich down. It did go faster then we got to the soldering part so i had to teach him how to solder his mom scream he will burn him self! I said YES! he will! but he will learn to be careful if he keeps burning himself then we have a problem.. He only burn himself once and soon he was soldering really good.

He soldered the bullet connectors, power distribution boards, connectors, etc etc.

Then the wiring began he followed the diagram for wiring  he ran into a couple of snags which i did no have the answer to and would figure it out together then move on. other issues we encountered were the Keyed servo leads that did not fit into the receiver he came up with cant we just cut that part off and then it could fit? We did and it worked every day we had a problem and before going to bed we would talk about it and try and solve them. Things so simple to us now was the propellers the had to go in a certain order. clockwise and counter clockwise. fine but which way there are no marking on the propellers.

in the end he did about 80% of the building and wiring i did the rest and the programming of the Dji flight controller which turned out to be amazing!

For never flying a quadcopter it flew amazing well!

Jesse and I learn a lot from that experience it was almost magical we thought about what the wright brothers felt when there plane finally took off and worked! or when nasa launched it first rocket.

Mission accomplished! on to the next project!

This was only phase 1.
Phase 2: we will add gps and cameras then fpv with anti-vibration system
phase 3: waypoints and osd
phase 4: (this summer)
we will attach a rover to deploy via parachute then release parachute.
Rover on land will take a soil sample while filming the quadcopter will return home and self-land.
The rover will avoid obstacles and also return home via gps.

Update!

This is what it looks like today the New X-2

IMG_6671

This is what it can do so far all shot from the the Gunn-Kraft X-2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwKHluI-3v0