Long Range Receiver Blade 350QX
One of the big problems of the early version of the Blade 350QX is that the antenna is internal and sitting in close proximity to the battery. So the signal is easily blocked by the battery when you get out to the edge of where your transmitter will reach. To make matters worse, if you are flying FPV, the battery isn’t blocking the antenna while flying away from yourself, but wen you turn around to come back, the battery is blocking the receiver antenna and you can’t get back. See my experience with this here. If you just need a little bit more range there is a nice tutorial on how to move the antenna:
You’ll need some good soldering techniques and a bunch of time to pull this off, but it will extend your range some and not have to worry as much about flying out fpv, and flying back blind.
Another option that you have is to amplify your radio’s 2.4ghz signal. Most transmitters come with a 100mw 2.4ghz signal stock. My blade 350QX could barely get signal through the battery at 1/3 of a mile away. In this video using an amplified 2.4ghz transmitter this pilot gets about 2 miles away for a nice beach flight. Here is a walk through on RC Groups of how to amplify your 2.4ghz signal for long range flight. I have not tried this. It will void your warranty on your transmitter. And you may not be able to fly with friends at this power level because you will bleed over and block out other transmitters. Here is another Video walk through:
My solution to adding long range to the Blade 350QX is more complicated, and really more just to see if it would work. As I have recently been playing with the OrangeRX Open LRS UHF system, I wanted to find a way to add that system to the Blade 350QX. My tutorial for how to setup and use the $50 dollar OrangeRX Open LRS System can be found here.
I initially was planning on trying to wire the OrangeRX receiver into the Blade 350QX by finding the PPM in. But then browsing HobbyKing I came across this: OrangeRX DSMX/DSM2 Compatible 2.4GHz DIY Transmitter Module. This got me thinking of an easier solution to the problem.
First I tested the setup on the ground by flying my Blade Nano QX through the 433mhz to 2.4Ghz system to make sure there wouldn’t be ridiculous delays that would make it impossible to control. There was no noticeable delay in flight so I built a shelf for my Blade 350QX, and attached the receiver and transmitter to it. See Picture Below
The Red arrow is pointing to the DIY 2.4Ghz Transmitter, and the yellow arrow to the OrangeRX Open LRS receiver. They are servo wired together from Channel six of the OrangeRX Receiver to the PPM in of the 2.4Ghz Transmitter. I also brought 12V power from the 3S lipo battery plug to power both the receiver and the transmitter.
After a few hover tests I took it out for a real spin:
I got out of line of sight orientation here, and flipped it out of stability and did a backflip on accident. Just gotta try it with FPV still.