FPV. An unexpected pleasure.

by andre | May 12, 2014 | (7) Posted in Just Fun

Hello… My name is André Rousseau and I love to fly FPV.

My FPV story is a slow one. It has taken me a few months to really get going but now I look forward to the chance to fly FPV every weekend...

Fat Chance

When I started flying RC planes again back in the fall of 2013 I looked at FPV but discounted the idea as way too expensive. For the cost of the starter kit I could build so many more planes.

Then around Christmas my wife was looking for the “perfect” gift.

The Fat Shark Teleport V3 set fit the bill.

Not to expensive and something that was a nice to have…

Spec wise it is nothing to get excited about but it functions and it is a great starting point.

First Flight First Failure

My very first fpv flight lasted all of 30 seconds. It was very disorienting and uncontrolled.

That had more to do with the Cub not liking the extra weight and me not being prepared.

(Tips that work for me)

  • Launch with the goggles on.
  • I found taking off then dropping the goggles down bad.
  • The light contrast difference between daylight and the goggles is so great you are effectively blind till your eyes catch up.
  • So have someone throw your plane for you. Or have them get you airborne and hand over the remote.

Booming Fun

After the less than stellar attempt to fly with the Cub I finished off my Twin Boomer and set off to fly that plane.

Boomer turned out to be an excellent FPV plane and provided with my first real flight.

The jello in the video has to do with the fact those motors were in a big crash when the YC-14 wing folded. Still running and proving the design is good.

(Tips that work for me)

  • When launching with the goggles on. Ensure you can take off, climb to altitude quickly and establish an orbit cleanly.
  • Work with your spotter. Listen to your spotter.
  • Get level, get your bearing, relax and enjoy.

Extra Information While Flying

Next to come along was a small purchase from Hobby King.

The Mini OSD with GPS. Again nothing top of the line but got the job done.

The main reason for anyone to use an OSD (On Screen Display) is to monitor the batteries.

Having speed, altitude and direct is super important but for close quarters FPV a simple OSD will work.

I’ve since flashed the OSD board to provide even more details while flying.

To Wing It Or Not

My next FPV platform was the Blunt Nose Versa Wing. The FT video really got me excited about flying the wing.

Great design but during a FPV flight a servo broke.

Luckily nothing was damaged but for me that failure represented a risk.

While a wing is super fun and efficent to fly you compromise by only having 2 control surfaces.

(Tips that work for me)

  • A spotter with a good eye can save your day.
  • Consider painting your white plane orange. Especially in winter.
  • A recovery buzzer is handy as well.

Bixler Bixler

Then a Bixler entered my life.

Right now the Bixler 2 is my main FPV platform. It may not be the best airframe but eh it was a gift. I’ve enjoyed flying it and look forward to pushing it’s range out and exploring the surrounding areas where I fly.

So why FPV?

The technical challenge integers me. Specially doing this on a budget. Now long distance FPV really does not interest me. Staying well within 1 KM is perfectly reasonable and fun.

Other gear:

Recently I put together a DVR field package.

The package allows me to very easily capture the broadcast and include them in my videos.

Next I hope to buy a small 4”-7” monitor for my spotter to use.

I am also in the middle of building a Wraith designed by iBCrazy. The Wraith will replace my Twin Boomer and see FPV action this summer. There is also a tri-copter in the works as I want to try my hand at aerial videography.

Summer plans:

As mentioned my goal this summer will be to test the range and go out to 1km.

This should be possible with all the gear I currently have. Before I venture to far out I need to get the RSSI working so I have information being sent from the plane to me over the OSD.


While this all costs money it is nice to know you can do this on a budget and have fun.

Happy flying and thanks for watching.


marc60 on June 2, 2014
Nice story Andre.
Simmilar as my way in to FPV. After about 6 months of RC flying I finally got control over my plane, got bored and started dropping things from a scratch build twinengine plane. After that put a cheap little camera on the plane. After seeing some video's on youtube in winter 2012/2013 I decided that FPV could be the thing for me. It was. I like flying on a budget, so scratch build is great. I make little steps. First FPV, OSD, than storm OSD with RTH. Now I 'm slowly learning for a HAM licence, But not for longrange, just for a reliable control up to about 2 km. Grts Marc
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apnewton on June 2, 2014
Great article Andre. Love your detail and presentation style. Do more.
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andre on June 2, 2014
Thanks guys!

Appreciate the encouragement.
I've been having so much fun and having an opportunity to share my experience is very rewarding.

So thank you FliteTest as well ;)

I have a few other article ideas such as tricopter fpv experience, flying all summer and other activities.

My shotgun mic and windsock arrived today so next up is for me to acquire a HD camera to shoot my content with.

Exciting times.
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gilcd85 on June 10, 2014
Exact same story here! started in the fall of 13, built some FT designs (versa, bloody wonder, etc.) entered FPV with my Bixler and now regular flying just isn't enough!
Flying 5.8ghz with home made antennas. Waiting on Orange LRS set to extend beyond 1KM range :)
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FPV. An unexpected pleasure.