I built a quadcopter! I got partial funding from TechX SR (student relations) to build something cool to demo at xFair. I decided to build a quadcopter designed for aerial video and first person view flying. The build used the OpenPilot CC3D flight controller, a flight controller with a 32-bit STM32 microcontroller and 9-axis IMU that runs open-source software.

After waiting for what seemed like an eternity to get parts from about 10 different vendors, I started the build in mid-January.

Start of Build

In about a week, the build was basically complete. All that was left was video equipment, which would be added later after successful flight tests.

Basic Build

I showed off the quadcopter at xFair in February, somehow ending up at the Twitter booth because they were snowed out. Unfortunately, I couldn’t actually fly the helicopter indoors.


Due to winter weather in Massachusetts, I didn’t end up doing an outdoor flight test until April 2nd.

First Flight

After I was confident that the quadcopter could fly, I attached my GoPro and captured my first aerial video on April 6th. I don’t have an FPV setup yet, so I couldn’t see how the video turned out until I got back to my dorm. It was a pretty awesome experience watching the video for the first time. Here’s how Killian Court looks from a couple hundred feet in the air:

Aerial Photo of Killian Court