So youre looking to get into drones and UAVs? This tutorial series is designed to help you understand the emerging field of UAVs and guide you through the process of building your own UAV using off-the shelf parts. The terminology and definitions used here are intended to give you, the reader an understanding of each t
ARF Almost Ready to Fly: a UAV which comes assembled with almost all parts necessary to fly. Components like the controller and receiver may not be included.
BNF Bind and Fly; the UAV comes fully assembled and includes a receiver. You only need to choose a compatible transmitter and bind it to the receiver.
DIY Do It Yourself, which is now commonly used to mean custom. This normally involves using parts from a variety of different suppliers and creating or modifying parts.
Drone This is synonymous with UAV. The term drone seems to be more common for military use whereas UAV is more common for hobby use
A UAV which has six motors / propellers.
Multirotor Multirotor simply means an aircraft with multiple rotors
Octocopter A UAV which has eight motors / propellers.
Quadcopter A UAV which has four motors / propellers and four support arms. Configurations are normally + (the front of the UAV faces one of the arms) or X (the front of the aircraft faces between two arms).
RTF Ready To Fly: a UAV which comes fully assembled with all necessary parts. Simply charge the battery and fly!
Size (mm) Size is normally provided in millimeters (ex 450mm) and represents the greatest point to point distance between two motors on a UAV. Size can also determine the class of UAV (micro, mini etc)
Spyder A Spyder type UAV (normally quad or hex) is one where the supporting arms are not symmetric in bot haxes when looked at from the top.
Tricopter A UAV which has three motors / propellers, and usually three support arms
UAV Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (of any kind)
V-Tail A UAV which has four arms, of which the rear two are at an angle to form a V
X4 / X8 X4 and X8 are UAV configurations with four support arms; X4 configurations have one motor at the end of each arm, whereas X8 have two motors per arm (one facing up, the other facing down)
Y3 / Y6 Y3 and Y6 are UAV configurations with three support arms; Y3 configurations have one motor at the end of each arm, whereas Y6 have two motors per arm (one facing up, the other facing down)