FPV Pod Design

by MESA RC | March 18, 2015 | (12) Posted in Projects


To the FliteTest Community;

We got the "New Plane Anxiety" with the latest purchase of the Apprentice 15e, you all know what I am talking about, you don't want to fly it, modify it, change it, scratch it, etc. The plane is beautiful and duty calls to gather video for data submission on a project, so can we engineer something that will prevent us from ruining the plane. Accomodating FPV gear on any aircraft takes a little TLC, some modification, and possible destruction in order to make the system fit and perform correctly. Ashton took upon himself to engineer and design a rig that can house all of our FPV gear to safely be mounted on the Apprentice without any cutting or modification to the plane.  It took him roughly a period to whip up some concept design ideas, transfer over to CAD, and fabrication.  

Below is the rig mounted cleanly on the main wing using the rubber bands already present with the main wing, no additional mounting necessary.


Ashton was kind enough to make the plans available for you guys to download and tryout too.

LINK: http://media.wix.com/ugd/fe25e6_dec1cb89fdd34ad4bc290f7f52a9b2d8.pdf 

Once the design and fabrication stages were complete, it was time to test the rig out, and it was a lot of fun.  A new experience for Ashton and now others that are using his system in the class.  We made sure we used the FCC regulated FPV gear, Ashton had a spotter to help out and take over just incase he lost video feed.

Doing it right, making sure the plane flies great with no errors prior to throwing on the goggles.

Throw the goggles on and have some fun!

Make sure your spotter is present, I mean present!

Oh and have fun, lots of it! Nice work Ashton.


LordVader on March 20, 2015
That is awesome, don't know how you guys keep coming up with all these great ideas and innovations, but don't stop. Maybe you guys could figure one out for low wing/warbird plane designs. This would work on all your prop jets too. So cool. Keep up the great works guys and keep flying.
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enivid on March 20, 2015
I completely second this comment. This school is training the next gen flitetest!
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grether2000 on March 21, 2015
A nice idea and plans. For simplicity and if you don't need to raise the camera you could just use the bottom plate and strap the 3 items down side by side. Also adding a strip doubler along the bottom in front and back might stabilize it a bit on the curved wing top, as well as provide a gap to for the velcro straps below the plate.
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animal99 on March 28, 2015
I agree with grether2000 - minimalizing it's height would significantly reduce drag on the plane. But for smoother video, I'd recommend mounting camera to a floating plate thereby reducing vibrations (isolated through rubber washers or cushioned plugs(?)).
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dharkless on April 6, 2015
Nice work. Your body of work as an organization is impressive. The degree of contribution by the students is also very impressive. This is just another great example. The student contribution is the real value of your program. Keep the great work coming.
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MESA RC on April 6, 2015
Thank you for the comment, we do are best, we have a great group of students this year.
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FPV Pod Design