Just flying: INAV 2.0 on a 7 inch long range cruiser quadcopter

I like my 7-inch endurance FPV drone. Maybe it does not flies super smooth yet, but slowly I'm getting there. The best move was probably to replace HQProp 7×3.5×3 V1S propellers with Gemfan 7×4.2. Fantastic propellers those Gemfans…

The common cranes (Grus grus) in a middle of the video really could not decide if they are scared of my drone or nor. In the end, I've decided to leave them alone… Storks are usually more friendly. They tend to ignore drones at all. The locals call this place The Carpathia. Why? Perhaps because those are the only "hills" on a completely flat area around.

Full 7-inch endurance drone specification is available here

INAV Wind Estimator

INAV 2.0: Wind estimator. What does it do? Tries to estimate the speed of the wind (obviously) as well as wind direction. Let's be honest, it's experimental and relays only on the difference of predicted and actual flight path. So do not even try to think it will give accurate measures. But my tries says that wind estimator results are plausible as long as an airplane is stable in the air.

How to use INAV Autotune

Autotune (or Auto Tune) that is present in INAV for quite a long time is a working solution for tuning PID (or rather PIFF) controller used by INAV on fixed wings (all airplanes, flying wings). Not like all the attempts designed for multirotors, this one actually works.

INAV Autotune can be used on any airplane and is fairly simple to use as long as you follow a few simple steps:

How to connect HC-SR04 to any flight controller (INAV, Betaflight, Pixhawk too)

I’ve been asked to cover this topic multiple times. So, welcome to part one: how to connect HC-SR04 sonar rangefinder to INAV and any flight controller? The answer is simple: don’t. HC-SR04 sonar is absolutely not suited to work on a drone! It picks noise instead of ground echo and above a certain altitude (low altitude by the way) reports rubbish! From time to time it kind of work over concrete but immediately loose measurement capabilities over grass.

INAV Configurator starts minimized and how to fix it

This is one of the most frequently reported things about every new version of INAV Configurator: from time to time, it starts minimized and it can not be made visible. It is a bugger connected with a fact that INAV Configurator does not have an installer. It's just "download and run" and after releasing a new version, we can not delete stored data during install. Since there is no install process.

How to use INAV Autotrim function – since you should do it

This is one of the most useful INAV functions for fixed wings! Servo autotrim solves the problem of trimming the airplane for level flight. Yes, flight controller does is “automatically” in stabilized flight modes, but for good Manual flight performance, you just have to have trimmed control surfaces. A long time ago you had to use some tricks and “adjustments” but for quite some time, INAV can do trimming for you.

Fear not, INAV 2.0 is here

We have finally done it! The first release candidate for INAV 2.0 is open for download. You can get it together with INAV Configurator 2.0 from GitHub.

What changed? The list is very very long and to be honest it is probably the biggest INAV release ever. There are over 200 tickets connected with INAV 2.0 release. The full list is just too long to publish over here. The shortcut of most important things is for you in a form of a video:

INAV Braking Mode for multirotors

Flying with a multirotor drone with INAV always had a problem: braking. When you were flying fast and then release the stick, a drone was not braking very fast, then it was going back to the place where you released the sticks. Rubberbanding. Irritating.

Over the time there were at least 2 attempts to fix it. Mine is at least the 3rd one and is called "Braking Mode". How it works:

  • when you release the sticks and speed is high enough, the drone is allowed to boost braking angle and speed
  • when braking is done, speed is low or close to zero, the current position is stored and new target position. Rubberbanding is gone

Troubleshoothing INAV: magnetometer/compass is not working

Your magnetometer/compass is not working with INAV? Is the sensor red in Configurator? You are not the only one… Not only most popular compass HMC5883l is discontinued and what you get are Chinese clones, chip labeled 5883 might not be HMC5883l but something completely different. And I2C bus is very very picky and likes to give up on you….

This is how you might fix your problems: add pullup resistors for I2C SCL and SDA lines and/or lower i2c_speed