Tarot FY-680 Build

Posted: January 22, 2013 in Tarot FY680

Hi guys

Well the builds begun 🙂 Here is a quick run down :

I don`t see much point or a screw by screw thread, so Ill skip the first 1 1/2 hours of the build and show the basic frame built ( no threadlock )

I`m really impressed with the quality of the carbon plates. They are very strong, nicely cut, couldn`t be happier ……………….

The landing gear however ………………….

That may look like 4 points of contact, but its only three, under the center screw it is not attached to the skid. This means that all the weight is going to be put on just 10mm or carbon  😮 I predict they break almost instantly.

Here`s a close up of the frame though and the fixings, really nice 🙂

There is a plate that screws on the bottom plate. I have plans for that rear opening and with the top plate being identical I mounted the bottom plate on the top so the Naza was on the COG instead of a useless big hole.

This left the opening below :


As you can see I installed spacers, this is so I could mount the KK power board, but have the board lower so my cables could easily be routed under it as well.

I had a chap called Paul ( madoldgit ) on RCGroups make some stickers to go with my RCTimer motors. The motors have turned up so both went on :

I hope these motors work out, the pancake style in my opinion look really cool 🙂

UHF Rx and GPS went on as well as the Naza :

The gimbal was next, it turned up with no instructions at all. Luckily I found a very long ( 10min ) still video of a complete one and was able to make it in relatively quick time :

I hope in the future to buy a GoPro3 to go on it. So far it works fine, but I wonder how it will cope with vibrations in flight.

And that is as far as I`ve got with it, I need the ESC`s to turn up, the Tarot extras, then I can continue on 🙂

I forgot a collapsed shot, here is it in my version of compact ( because Ill leave the gimbal on

And as it is now :

Ok so postie came, and delivered nothing 😦

But last night I decided to crack on with a few bits.

I drilled the 10mm carbon tubes at the rear, this was to take two carbon rods, the rods were to hold my Vtx on. Here it is mounted, the rods have not been glued in or sanded yet until the battery tray arrives, but you get the idea.

Obviously not going to use the stock whip, Ill make us a Skew soon for it

What I wanted at first was tilt on my FPV camera to match my future GoPros tilt, so I could line up shots. Then after a rethink it was much easier to use the live out from the GoPro and switch between the flight camera and the GoPro to line up shots instead.

So I fitted the Flytron video switcher :

A nifty little unit that also monitors glitching from the Rx and reacts, if the glitching is bad it will lock onto the camera plugged into the high priority input and stay there. LED indication of which input its using is also a good feature.


ESC`s turned up !!!!!!! Finally !!!!!!!!!

So I could finally wire the motors up, finally get the directions right, finally solder the power board up and finally start the motors up for the first time 🙂

ESC`s in, I tried to get them as neat and subtle as I could.

The front :

Underneath you can see for its size there is still not a lot of room to play with. Then fixing everything down needs a fair bit of thinking to avoid the moving parts so it is still foldable.

A quick system check to make sure everything was running the right way and then I could get the props on

Flying weight with 4S 5000mah lipo is 2.4kg

Still the battery tray missing 😦 But apart from that, its ready to rock n roll 🙂

Update : Well the gimbal was rubbish, so I have decided to step up to a brushless gimbal and a Nex 5N camera as you will see below

I didn`t like the original Tarot landing gear either so replaced it 🙂

You sill use the original 16mm leg and 12mm skid, but remove the ally and weak carbon brace with the plastic one piece unit and rubber feet that actually stay on when you land :)

The new IMU turned up, no noise now on the GUI which is good, that meant I could also now mount the IMU under the cover not on top of it making it look much better :

The problem I had with the gimbal after some experimenting was down to vibrations. So I whipped off the original Tarot dampeners which are great for lighter cameras and put on the base plates and dampeners from the useless Goodluckbuy gimbal I have now sitting around :

Right now the camera is cable tied to the base, the base cable tied to that Tarot, yes ……….. I cable tied a Nex 5 on :) :) :) Its working remarkably well so I will replace the ties with drilled holes and nuts n bolts soon :)

I had also ordered the Quanum 2.4 telemetry system from Hobbyking. As I have been having unreliable results from my lipo alarms and inconsistent performance from my lipo`s I wanted a system to monitor in real time all the cells so I can have a clear and informed reading of the state of play.

It turned up today, so the receiver went on my 9X :

The transmitter is yet to be fitted onto the Tarot, but I have had the system setup and working fine. The receiver is a tiny unit that could go on even the lightest of multi`s or planes for that matter and I have a feeling, for $50 this is going to be a very good investment

Still waiting on Tarot spacers for the gimbal board ( yes its just hanging off the back ) the right HDMI cable ( ordered the wrong frekkin one :) ) and the motors / props swapping. Then, eventually, I think I`m done with it and ready to actually get some filming done…………….

OK so update time :)

A bit has changed with the Hex over the last few days. I moved the Quanum Telemetry and the Vtx to the legs to get better separation between them and the UHF receiver and GPS receiver :)

Th Vtx now has Bignose LHCP antennas on it to help get me better separation at FPV meets.

I fitted upgraded motor mounts that buy me a bit more length on the arms and allow much easier removing / replacing of the motors and neater cabling too. RCTimer 12×3.8 props are my weapon of choice with the Hex now.

I also decided to hang my lipo under the frame now as apposed to on top of it. I believe the lower CG it has now helps it with a more steady hover. I bought an extra lipo base so I could leave the one on top so I can run two lipos if I so wish.

I have installed and am really happy with the Tarot 2D brushless gimbal for the Gopro 3

The only problem now being that even though before putting it on I replaced the short spacers with some Tarot Hexacopter spacer that were longer, the arms and props are still in the shot. I will be adding another set of the spacers to drop it even more, but I think they will still show. I have ordered longer 12mm tubes to then push the gimbal out front further which will then fix this problem ( I hope ) :)

Time for a gimbal test :

Testing my Tarot gimbal for the first time.

No stabilization used, raw footage, no gimbal tuning. This is how it is, straight out of the box !

I tried hovering still, to prove the dampening was good – It was
I tried jockeying the sticks to throw the gimbal or initiate a wobble – It did neither
I tried fast forward flight which has previously made the roll axis shudder – It held rock solid
I tried fast forward flight yaw turns which has made the other gimbals loose their horizon – It kept the horizon perfectly level throughout

  1. Marcelo FOX says:

    Muito bom o seu topico, estou louco para montar um equipamento igual ao seu, mas eu tenho um certo receio da Naza M nao conseguir estabilizar o Hexa 680mm. Sendo necessário a utilização de uma Wookong nesse frame. Vou acompanhar a evolução do seu equipamento, e espero que no futuro voce tenha sucesso em vôo com seu Setup. Mantenha nos informado !
    Aproveito para convidar você para fazer parte do nosso forum http://www.multirotores.com.br, temos muitas informações de multirotores e FPV.
    Marcelo “Cmte.Fox”
    Translator (Portugues BR)

    • cayote64 says:

      Thank you Marcelo

      I have flown the Hex today, the Naza M is working really well, the Hex is rock solid in the air and very maneuverable

      • Marcelo FOX says:

        Muito bom saber disso ! Agora me sinto mais seguro para comprar um Tarot 680 ! Aproveito para perguntar o que vocÊ achou da qualidade do acabamento do material e das peças dele ? e esses motores que você colocou será que suportam bastante peso ? Obrigado !
        Se quiser publicar suas construções em nosso forum, será muito bem vindo !
        Estou montando duas asas X8 e me basei em muitas coisas da sua construção !


  2. cayote64 says:

    Thank you for the kind words

    I bought the full carbon version of the FY-680. Recently though many people who bought the same have received glass fiber frames with carbon covering so be careful who you get it off in case its a glass fiber copy.

    The quailty is really good, strong frame in general, the landing gear though is very weak, I will replace it soon. The clips are reported to all snap in the cold, so far all mine are fine.

    The motors are fine on 12×4.5`s I tried 10×4.5`s but the performance was no good at all. Even with the 12×4.5 props I would say if you want to lift heavier cameras then pick a different motor.

    • Marcelo FOX says:

      Legal ! Vou acompanhando o seu post ! Se puder colocar um video do Hexa voando seria mais legal ! hehehe
      Depois acessa o nosso forum e veja a construção das minhas X8 ! Se você quiser poderá opiniar no projeto !

  3. cayote64 says:

    I will have a look in your forum thanks.

    Ill post some video`s up of it flying in the next day or two, the weather here is not so good. I did the maiden of the Hex in my front room because it was so windy lol

  4. denis magot says:


    Denis from France, near Vresailles.

    I am beginning a 690 built…and I dont know what motors do I put on this model…

    Can one or flat one…for the moment I hesitate between :

    Classic one : http://www.rctigermotor.com/show.php?contentid=132

    Flat can : http://www.rctigermotor.com/show.php?contentid=142

    And also need propeller help.

    My Tarot is only for photography and Video making

    Sorry for My poor english

  5. Steven Kothenbeutel says:


    Could you list all the components you acquired for your setup?

    Thank you!

  6. denis magot says:


    My FY690 has flewn, stable and around 6 minutes of flight with one lipo 5000 20C.

    For the moment I have fixed the GoPro directly on the chassis.

    have a look on my first flight : http://vimeo.com/77423488

    Best regards


  7. cayote64 says:

    Nice one Denis, looks good mate

  8. Mathias says:

    Would be cool if you could enter yours specs in the public Tarot list I created. Hopefully this list will grow up so people can compare parts, flight times etc. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Ar14FRKoyjaidC1rMXd3ZlAwWTNKTTRtQWw3TXIxekE&usp=sharing#gid=0

  9. hans verkerk says:

    nice build and presentation got me hooked; i went and ordered the tarrot ironman 680 frame i noticed there are a 690 a 680 pro and a 685 frame all look the same as the ironman with the pro being the exception ie it has a power distrabution board and the better quality motor mounts and its 415.00 more than the ironman, funny that! well im off to finish my build then i will tackle my main build droidworx octocopter with the latest simonk escś and the new power hungry power board will post pictures once i start the octo build, and will be happy to receive any tips or advice as it will be my second only self build. just hope my 680 turs out as nice as yours

  10. Demostenes Filho says:

    Qual a potência(kv) do motor

  11. Cuani says:

    And about Flying time?

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