We've been asked many time to design something smaller for 3 inch props. I have been reluctant for two reasons.
The first reason is that there were not many options for small motors and even props for quite some time. By now the popularity of such weight class has brought about many more options in terms of motors, but also good options for 16 x 16 stacks that can run such small models well.
The second reason is that I am not a fan of minimalistic frames with a POD style 3D printed or plastic canopies. And I am not a fan of bottom mounted lipo for frames made for freestyle and fun flying. Seems most freestyle frames today do not bottom mount the lipo. The word is that a top mounted lipo offers better flying characteristics. This is all debatable, but I certainly prefer a top mounted lipo.
I did not think we could make right on weight because having a top mounted lipo means more carbon parts and more hardware adding up to too much weight. So I procrastinated.
I eventually pulled out my pencils and my stencils and decided to draw something up. My goal was to make something light, strong, and it had to have a top mounted lipo. For example, looking at some 5 inch models that have a top mounted lipo, it seemed obvious that the rear end of the model needed not to have the same stack height and needed not to be so wide... These two things alone allowed for shedding enough weight that we stood a chance to make weight.
With Jason Hay's help, we came up with a number of solutions to keep weight down while meeting our design goals.
- 3 inch props
- Top mounted lipo as it makes more sense for a small fun flyer/ freestyle frame.
- Custom alumi front cage fully protecting a nano cam
- Custom shorter rear alumi posts
- New rubber moulded vtx antenna mount that is modular with the custom alumi rear posts. No bolts needed.
- Slightly slanted aerodynamic top lipo plate. (This is the result of shedding weight from the rear end.)
- Dry frame weight (fully assembled): 19.5 grams.
- Full specs are listed on this page.
- Running 1106s/5100kv on mine and it is silly fast. Feels like 5 inch with more agility.
- Frame Weight 19.5 grams
- Motor to Motor 131.25mm
- Frame Shape Compressed X
- Main Plate Thickness 2mm
- Hardware M2
- Motor Mount Pattern 9mm
- FC Stack Mount 16x16 or optional whoop AIO bracket
- FPV Camera Mount Nano (14mm)
- FPV Antenna Mounts Customer rubber holder (1.8mm)
- Max Stack Height 16mm
- Warrantied Parts Bumper to bumper
- 1x Armattan Tadpole 3 inch Special Edition
Notes: Important note: We have very limited numbers of the space grade carbon fiber version of this model. If you break it and require warranty replacement, we cannot guarantee that we will have the space grade material available. If that happens, your parts would be replaced but with our classic carbon fiber instead.