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Service Manual

3DR Support
Contact 3DR Support for questions and technical help.

online: 3dr.com/support
email: support@3dr.com
call: +1 (858) 225-1414 (direct)
+1 (855) 982-2898 (toll free in the US and Canada)

Support line hours:


Mon-Fri 8 am to 5 pm PST
Sat 9 am to 3 pm PST

3D Robotics (3DR)
1608 4th Street, Suite 410
Berkeley, CA 94710
Tel. +1 (858) 225-1414
3dr.com

Solo Service Manual V3


DCT0040
© 2015 3D Robotics Inc.

GOPRO, HERO, the GOPRO logo, and the GoPro Be a HERO logo are
trademarks or registered trademarks of GoPro, Inc.
Contents
1 System Description 1
1.1 System Overview 1
1.2 Aircraft Overview 2
1.3 Controller Overview 4
1.4 Operating Parameters 5
1.5 Autopilot 6
1.6 Propulsion 7
1.7 Electrical System 8
1.8 Communication 10

2 Setup 12
2.1 In the Box 12
2.2 Battery 12
2.3 Controller 14
2.4 Propellers 16
2.5 Camera 17
2.6 App 18

3 The Solo Gimbal 20


3.1 Gimbal Installation 20
3.2 Setting Up 23
3.3 Gimbal Operation 27

4 Safety 29
4.1 Location 29
4.2 Environmental Awareness 29
4.3 Propellers 29
4.4 Home Position 29
4.5 Altitude & Safety Fence 30
4.6 Emergency Procedures 30
4.7 Power Management 31
4.8 Flight Battery 31
4.9 Controller 32
4.10 GPS Management 32
4.11 Signal Management 33

5 Operating Procedures 34
5.1 Takeoff 34
5.2 Land 35
5.3 In-Flight Data 36
5.4 Joystick Control 37
5.5 Smart Shots 40

6 Maintenance 42
6.1 Legs 43
6.2 Motor Pods 48
6.3 GPS Module  50
6.4 Solo Mainboard 55

7 Procedures 71
7.1 Updates 71
7.2 Pairing the Controller 74
7.3 Factory Reset 75

8 Appendix 78
8.1 Specifications and Operating Parameters 78
8.2 Warranty 79
8.3 Regulatory Compliance 79
8.4 Sensor Data Sheets 80
8.5 Part Numbers 81
Figures

Figure 1.1.A: Solo System Context Diagram 1


Figure 1.2.A: Solo Exterior Overview 2
Figure 1.2.B: Solo Interior Overview 3
Figure 1.3.A: Controller Schematic Diagram 4
Figure 1.4.A: Solo Operating Parameters & Specifications Table 5
Figure 1.5.A: Solo Onboard Sensors Table 6
Figure 1.6.A: Motor Specifications Table 7
Figure 1.6.B: Motor Schematic Diagram 7
Figure 1.6.C: Solo Motor Order 8
Figure 1.7.2.A: Solo Electrical System 8
Figure 1.7.3.A: Controller Electrical System 9
Figure 1.8.A: Solo Communication Flows 11
Figure 2.1.A: Solo Parts 12
Figure 2.2.1.A: Charge Solo Battery 13
Figure 2.2.2.A: Insert Solo Battery 13
Figure 2.3.1.A: Charge Controller 14
Figure 2.3.2.A: Power On Controller 15
Figure 2.4.1.A: Attach Propellers 16
Figure 2.5.1.A: Attach Camera 17
Figure 2.5.2.A: Camera Configuration Process 17
Figure 2.6.2.A: Connect to Solo Link 18
Figure 2.6.3.A: Controller Preflight Update Prompt 18
Figure 2.6.3.B: Solo App Update Process 18
Figure 2.6.3.C: Controller Updating Display 19
Figure 2.6.3.D: Controller Update Display 19
Figure 2.6.3.E: Solo Update Displays 19
Figure 2.6.4.A: Viewing Video on the App 19
Figure 3.1.A: Solo Gimbal Parts 20
Figure 3.1.2.A: The Frame Removal 20
Figure 3.1.3.A: Connecting cables 21
Figure 3.1.4.A: Positioning the Gimbal Cable 21
Figure 3.1.4.B: Positioning the HDMI Cable 22
Figure 3.1.5.A: Mounting the Gimbal 22
Figure 3.2.2.A: HDMI Plug Positioning 23
Figure 3.2.2.B: Attach GoPro 23
Figure 3.2.2.C: Fasten Camera 24
Figure 3.2.3.A: GoPro Weight Balancing 24
Figure 3.2.4.A: Adding the Sunshade 25
Figure 3.2.6.A: Camera Configuration Process 26
Figure 3.3.1.A: Gimbal Controls 27
Figure 3.3.2.A: LED Gimbal Signal  27
Figure 4.5.A: Controller Maximum Altitude Warning 30
Figure 4.7.A: Low Controller battery warning and return-home notifications 31
Figure 4.7.B: Low flight battery warning and auto-land notifications 31
Figure 4.10.A: Controller Waiting-for-GPS Prompt 32
Figure 4.10.B: Controller GPS Lost Notification 32
Figure 4.11.A: Controller Signal Lost Warnings With GPS 33
Figure 4.11.B: Controller Signal Lost Warnings Without GPS 33
Figure 5.1.1.A: Start Motors 34
Figure 5.2.2.A: Return Home Behavior 35
Figure 5.3.A: Controller In-Flight Data Display 36
Figure 5.4.A: Controller Left Joystick 37
Figure 5.4.B: Throttle Joystick Behaviors 37
Figure 5.4.C: Yaw Joystick Behavior 38
Figure 5.4.D: Controller Right Joystick Controls 38
Figure 5.4.E: Pitch Joystick Controls 39
Figure 5.4.F: Roll Joystick Controls 39
Figure 6.1.A: Leg Replacement Parts 43
Figure 6.1.B: Solo Leg Diagram Overhead 43
Figure 6.1.C: Solo Leg Diagram Side View  43
Figure 6.1.1.A: Standard Leg Replacement
44
Figure 6.1.2.A: Detaching the Antenna from the Leg 45
Figure 6.1.2.B: Attaching a New Leg with an Existing Antenna 45
Figure 6.1.3.A: Compass Connector on Mainboard 46
Figure 6.1.3.B: Insert New Leg with Compass  47
Figure 6.2.A: Replacement Motor Pod Parts 48
Figure 6.2.1.A: LED Cover Removal  48
Figure 6.2.1.B: Motor Pod Removal  48
Figure 6.2.1.C: Motor Pod Disconnection 49
Figure 6.2.2.A: Motor Pod Connection  49
Figure 6.2.2.B: Screw and Led Motor Pod Replacement  50
Figure 6.3.A: Replaceable GPS Parts 50
Figure 6.3.1.A: GPS Cover Removal  51
Figure 6.3.2.A: Battery Tray Screw Locations 51
Figure 6.3.2.B: Battery Prong Clearance 51
Figure 6.3.2.C: GPS Cable Detachment  52
Figure 6.3.3.A: GPS Shielding Removal 52
Figure 6.3.3.B: GPS Module Screw Removal  52
Figure 6.3.3.C: GPS Module Replacement 53
Figure 6.3.4.A: Battery Tray Tab Alignment  53
Figure 6.3.4.B: Battery Tray Flush Alignment 54
Figure 6.3.4.1.A: GPS Cover Replacement  54
Figure 6.4.A: Replaceable Mainboard Parts 55
Figure 6.4.B: Mainboard Components (Top) 55
Figure 6.4.C: Mainboard Components (Bottom) 56
Figure 6.4.1.A: Mainboard Silver Screw Removal 56
Figure 6.4.1.B: Compass Connector Removal 57
Figure 6.4.1.C: Mainboard Lift 57
Figure 6.4.1.D: Mainboard Slide 57
Figure 6.4.1.E: Mainboard Loosening 58
Figure 6.4.1.1.A: Access to Antenna Leads 58
Figure 6.4.1.1.B: Antenna Lead Locations 59
Figure 6.4.1.2.A: 3DR Bus Location 59
Figure 6.4.1.2.B: 3DR Bus Screw Locations 59
Figure 6.4.2.1.A: Pixhawk Screw Removal 60
Figure 6.4.2.1.B: Separation of Pixhawk from Mainboard 60
Figure 6.4.2.1.C: Installed Pixhawk  60
Figure 6.4.2.2.A: HDMI Zip Tie Removal  61
Figure 6.4.2.2.B: HDMI Removal from Solo Link 61
Figure 6.4.2.2.C: Solo Link Removal from Mainboard 61
Figure 6.4.2.2.D: Solo Link to Mainboard Attachment 62
Figure 6.4.2.2.E: Solo Link to Mainboard Tightening 62
Figure 6.4.3.1.A: HDMI Feed  62
Figure 6.4.3.2.A: 3DR Bus Installation 63
Figure 6.4.3.3.A: Loose Antenna Leads 63
Figure 6.4.3.3.B: Mainboard Configuration for Antenna Lead Access 64
Figure 6.4.3.3.C: Right Antenna Overhead Connector  64
Figure 6.4.3.3.D: Press-Fit Right Antenna 64
Figure 6.4.3.3.E: Right Antenna Connected 65
Figure 6.4.3.3.F: Antenna Lead #2 Tape 65
Figure 6.4.3.3.G: Antenna Lead #1 Insertion 65
Figure 6.4.3.3.H: Antenna Lead #1 Routing  66
Figure 6.4.3.3.I: Antenna Overhead Opening for Long Lead  66
Figure 6.4.3.3.J: Antenna Lead One Taped 66
Figure 6.4.3.4.A: Compass Lead Connection 67
Figure 6.4.3.5.A: Mainboard Replacement 67
Figure 6.4.3.6.A: Motor Cables  68
Figure 6.4.3.6.B: Cable Retrieval Technique 68
Figure 6.4.3.6.C: Successful Cable Retrieval 68
Figure 6.4.3.6.D: Mainboard Wire Inspection 69
Figure 6.4.3.7.A: Mainboard Alignment Notch 69
Figure 6.4.3.7.B: Mainboard Underpinning Alignment  70
Figure 6.4.3.7.C: Mainboard Screw Replacement  70
Figure 7.1.A: Controller Preflight Update Prompt 71
Figure 7.1.B: App - Software Update 71
Figure 7.1.C: App - Download Update 71
Figure 7.1.D: App - Update Download in Progress 71
Figure 7.1.E: App - Reconnect to Solo Wi-Fi 72
Figure 7.1.F: App - Start Update 72
Figure 7.1.G: Controller - Updating 72
Figure 7.1.H: App - Update Disconnection Confirmation 72
Figure 7.1.I: Controller Update Complete Displays 73
Figure 7.1.J: Controller - Waiting for Solo 73
Figure 7.1.K: App - Update Success 73
Figure 7.2.A: Pair Button  74
Figure 7.2.B: Detected Solo 74
Figure 7.2.C: Solo Paired 74
Figure 7.3.A: Pair Button 75
Figure 7.3.B: Strobing Pairing Light 75
Figure 7.3.C: Controller Reset  76
Figure 7.3.D: Controller Update  76
Figure 7.3.E: Update and Waiting screens 76
Acronyms

UAV Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

3DR 3D Robotics

ESC Electronic Speed Controller

I2C Inter-Integrated Circuit

SPI Serial Peripheral Interface

PWM Pulse Width Modulation

PN Part Number
1 System Description
Solo is a lightweight, easy-to-use quadcopter optimized for capturing aerial video and still imagery. This section
provides a technical description for the 3DR Solo system, including components, communication, control, telemetry,
and operator interaction.

1.1 System Overview


The 3DR Solo system includes the Solo quadcopter, the Solo Controller, and the “3DR Solo” app. The operator
interacts with the Controller and app on the ground, and the Controller communicates with the Solo quadcopter
during flight.

1.1.1 Solo Quadcopter


Solo is a small unmanned aerial vehicle powered by four electric brushless motors and four propellers. Solo’s
onboard computers control navigation, attitude, and communications in flight while sending real-time telemetry
and video output and receiving control inputs over the 3DR Link secure WiFi network. Solo is optimized for aerial
imagery using a GoPro® HERO camera.

1.1.2 Controller
The Controller provides joystick, button, and dial controls and displays in-flight data on a full-color screen. Using
twin long-range dipole antennas, the Controller acts as the central hub for all communication on the 3DR Link
network, receiving all communications from Solo and the app, forwarding telemetry outputs to the app, and
controlling the transmission of all control inputs to Solo.

1.1.3 App
The 3DR Solo app outputs a live video stream from Solo’s onboard camera to an Android or iOS device. The
operator can use the app to view the live video with overlaid telemetry and access a simplified graphic interface for
controlling Solo’s advanced functions. The app connects to the 3DR Link network to receive video and telemetry
outputs and send control inputs.

Video output
Telemetry output
Control input

Ground Air

3DR Solo
Controller

Operator 3DR Link 3DR Solo


Secure WiFi
Network
3DR Solo
App

Figure 1.1.A: Solo System Context Diagram

1
1.2 Aircraft Overview
1.2.1 Smart Battery
The battery connects to Solo’s battery bay. Solo’s power button is located on the battery; Solo can only be powered
when the battery is connected.

1.2.2 Motors and Propellers


Solo’s arms are labeled 1 to 4 on the ends of the arms. Motors on arms #1 and #2 spin counterclockwise and use
clockwise-tightening propellers with silver tops. Conversely, motors on arms #3 and #4 spin clockwise and use
counter-clockwise tightening propellers with black tops.

1.2.3 Orientation LEDs


Each arm contains color-changing LEDs for directional awareness; in normal flight, the two front arms (#1 and #3)
display white, and the two rear arms (#2 and #4) display red. This LED scheme mimics the headlights and taillights
of a car for easy association by any operator.

1.2.4 Fixed Camera Mount (or 3-Axis Gimbal) and HDMI Cable
Solo includes a GoPro® The Frame fixed mount to mount a GoPro® HERO camera. The HDMI cable connects to
the GoPro® to output video and charge the camera during flight.

Alternatively, the fixed mount can be replaced by the optional 3-Axis Gimbal, as shown in the following illustration.
The Gimbal is covered in Chapter 3 of this manual.

Silver-top propeller

Power button
Solo Smart Battery
Rear-orientation LEDs
Black-top propeller

Motor Pod
Arm Numbering

Front-orientation LEDs

3-Axis Gimbal (optional)

Height: 10.2”
Motor-to-motor: 18.1”
Weight (no camera): 1.74 KG

Figure 1.2.A: Solo Exterior Overview

1.2.5 Solo Mainboard


The Solo mainboard connects all components onboard Solo. It acts as a voltage regulator and power distribution
system for the vehicle, sending power to all components and receiving voltage and current monitoring information
from the Solo Smart Battery.

1.2.6 Pixhawk 2
The Pixhawk autopilot handles all attitude estimation, inertial navigation, and failsafe monitoring for Solo. It receives
data from internal sensors, the external GPS module, the external compass module, and 3DR Solo Link to calculate
Solo’s in-flight dynamics. Pixhawk outputs telemetry data to the 3DR Link network and sends control commands
to Solo’s four motors via the electronic speed Controllers. Pixhawk sends and receives all signal through the
mainboard.

2
1.2.7 Compass Module
The compass module is placed in leg #4 to avoid interference from other electronic components. Data from the
compass is sent to Pixhawk through the mainboard for use in heading and altitude estimation.

1.2.8 GPS Module


The GPS module is located in front of the battery in a copper-shielded enclosure to reduce interference. GPS
data is essential for Solo’s automated flight capabilities. The GPS module sends data to the Pixhawk through the
mainboard.

1.2.9 Electronic Speed Controllers


Solo contains four electronic speed controllers (ESCs) to manage control of each of the four motors. ESCs receive
commands from Pixhawk through the mainboard and regulate the rotation of the motors to achieve the correct flight
speeds.

1.2.10 Solo Link


The Solo Link module manages communication between Solo and the Controller on the 3DR Link secure Wi-Fi
network. Solo Link receives all control inputs, outputs telemetry, and outputs video signals to communicate with
the ground over the 3DR Link network. Solo Link also runs software processes that regulate advanced automated
functions and data conversion. This module sends and receives data from Pixhawk through the mainboard.

1.2.11 Antennas
Twin dipole antenna in legs #1 and #2 send and receive signals from the 3DR Link Wi-Fi network.

ESC

GPS

Mainboard
1

Compass

Antenna

Figure 1.2.B: Solo Interior Overview

3
1.3 Controller Overview
1.3.1 Mobile-Device Holder
Mount an Android or iOS device to run the Solo app and effortlessly integrate the app into the Controller’s operation
flow. A user-supplied smartphone or tablet is required to operate Solo.

1.3.2 Joysticks
The Controller’s left and right joysticks provide direct manual control of Solo and physical control mechanisms for
using automated Smart Shots.

1.3.3 Screen
The Controller’s full-color screen provides prompts for correct operation of Solo, live in-flight data, and control over
automated Smart Shots.

1.3.4 Power Button


The power button provides a quick check of the Controller’s power level when pressed once and powers on the
Controller when held. The Controller provides vibration feedback to indicate that the power-up is successful.

1.3.5 Fly Button


The Fly button lets you control Solo’s main flight functions: starting motors, auto-takeoff, auto-land, and activating
manual flight.

1.3.6 Return Home


The Return-Home button allows you to end your flight automatically at any point by returning Solo to its original
launch point and landing.

1.3.7 Pause Button


The pause button is Solo’s emergency air brake. Press pause to stop Solo and hover in place.

1.3.8 Option Buttons


The A and B buttons change functionality based on where you are in the operational flow. The Controller screen
shows the currently assigned functions of A and B at all times. You can program A and B to specific functions using
the Solo App.

Antennae

Mobile-device holder

Gimbal controls

Joysticks

Screen

Pause
Return home
Fly
Power
Options
4
Figure 1.3.A: Controller Schematic Diagram
1.4 Operating Parameters
The operating parameters in the following figure apply to Solo. Always operate Solo within these parameters. Solo’s
performance and behaviors are not guaranteed when conditions violate the parameters listed below.

Communication frequency 2.4 GHz

Estimated flight time 25 minutes*

Maximum altitude 400 ft.

Range 2,000 ft. from launch point

Payload capacity 1.1 lbs.

Cruise speed 5 kts (2.5 m/s)

Maximum speed 55 mph (24.5 m/s)

Maximum climb rate 11 mph (4.9 m/s)

Maximum descent rate 6 mph (2.6 m/s)

Headwind limitation 17 mph (7.7 m/s) ?

Crosswind limitation 17 mph (7.7 m/s) ?

Operating temperature 32 F - 113 F

Operating relative humidity 0-85% RH

Max altitude above sea level 10,000 ft.

Figure 1.4.A: Solo Operating Parameters & Specifications Table

*Flight time varies with payload, wind conditions, elevation, temperature, humidity, flying style,
and pilot skill. Listed flight time applies to elevations less than 2,000 ft above sea level.

5
1.5 Autopilot
Solo uses a Pixhawk 2 autopilot running APM:Copter 3.3-dev software. APM:Copter is open-source flight control
based on the MAVlink communication protocol and part of the ArduPilot project. Pixhawk 2 runs an ARM Cortex-M4
STM32F427 processor with 2 MB of flash memory and 256 KB of RAM. Combined with an array of CAN, I2C, SPI,
PWM, and UART interfaces, Pixhawk 2 uses a suite of onboard sensors to calculate Solo’s orientation and motion in
flight. This data is input into APM:Copter’s inertial navigation and position estimation algorithms and combined with
control inputs to send commands to Solo’s propulsion system.

Location Sensor Manufacturer / Part Number* Data Type

Pixhawk 2 FMU Accelerometer InvenSense / MPU6000 Orientation

Pixhawk 2 FMU Gyroscope InvenSense / MPU6000 Motion

Pixhawk 2 FMU Magnetometer Honeywell / HMC 5983 Cardinal direction

Pixhawk 2 FMU Barometer Measurement Specialties / MS5611 Altitude

Pixhawk 2 Stabilized IMU Accelerometer InvenSense / MPU6000 Orientation

Pixhawk 2 Stabilized IMU Gyroscope InvenSense / MPU6000 Motion

Pixhawk 2 Stabilized IMU Barometer Measurement Specialties / MS5611 Altitude

Pixhawk 2 Stabilized IMU Accelerometer STMicroelectronics / LSM303D Orientation

Pixhawk 2 Stabilized IMU Magnetometer STMicroelectronics / LSM303D Cardinal direction

Pixhawk 2 Stabilized IMU Gyroscope STMicroelectronics / L3GD20 Motion

3DR Solo GPS GPS u-blox / NEO-7N Longitude & latitude

3DR Solo GPS GPS patch antenna Taoglas / GP.1575.25.4.A.02 Longitude & latitude

3DR Solo Compass Magnetometer Honeywell / HMC 5983 Cardinal direction

Figure 1.5.A: Solo Onboard Sensors Table

*Links to data sheets for sensors listed in this table are located in Appendix 8.4.

6
1.6 Propulsion
Solo uses four brushless motors and four propellers for propulsion. For control and aerodynamic efficiency, two
motors spin clockwise and two motors spin counterclockwise. Navigation in the air is achieved by mixing propulsion
of the four motors to actuate flight control along the roll, pitch, and yaw axes.

Voltage 880 kV

Configuration 12N14P

Motor diameter 27.8 mm

Motor height 34 mm

Stator diameter 22 mm

Stator length 16 mm

Shaft diameter 4 mm

Weight 75 g
ldle current(10)@10v(A) 0.4 A

Max continuous current(A)180S 20 A

Max continuous power(W)180S 280 W

Max current efficiency (5-17A)>80%

internal resistance 135 mΩ

Figure 1.6.A: Motor Specifications Table

Figure 1.6.B: Motor Schematic Diagram

Each of the four motors is numbered by the marking on the arm. These numbers correspond to the autopilot
calculations for these commands and are used for indicating motor replacement procedures. Each motor is
controlled by an Electronic Speed Controller (ESC) that regulates the rotation of the motors to achieve the speed
commanded by the autopilot.

7
03 01

02 04

Figure 1.6.C: Solo Motor Order

1.7 Electrical System


1.7.1 Battery
Solo is powered by a rechargeable lithium polymer battery. Power is distributed to the computers, motor pods and
accessories via the mainboard. The battery communicates over I2C with the Pixhawk to report information about
it’s voltage, current draw and percentage remaining. This information is pushed over the telemetry output to the
operator to provide data for in-flight power management and battery failsafe.

1.7.2 Mainboard
The Solo mainboard passes regulated voltage to the computing components onboard Solo: Pixhawk 2, 3DR
Solo Link, 3DR Solo GPS, and 3DR Solo Compass. These components have a two-way serial signal link with the
mainboard to transfer data between them via the mainboard as a central hub. The LEDs on each arm of Solo are
components of the ESCs and receive power and I2C signals via the ESCs.

Serial signal Solo Electrical System


I2C signal
PWM signal
Battery voltage
Regulated voltage
LED 1
ESC 1
LiPo Battery
Motor 1

LED 2
3DR Solo
Link ESC 2
Motor 2
Solo
Mainboard
LED 3
Pixhawk 2 ESC 3
Motor 3

LED 4
ESC 4
3DR Solo 3DR Solo
GPS Compass Motor 4

Figure 1.7.2.A: Solo Electrical System

8
1.7.3 Controller
The Controller is powered by a rechargeable lithium ion battery. The Controller mainboard monitors the battery’s
voltage and passes regulated voltage to the other components of the Controller. 3DR Controller Link, the LED
screen, and the Controller’s input devices (buttons, dials, and joysticks) receive regulated voltage from the battery
via the mainboard. The data signals between the mainboard and the components are one-way with the exception of
3DR Controller Link, which communicates with the mainboard over a two-way serial link.

Controller Electrical System


Serial signal
I2C signal
PWM signal
Battery voltage
Regulated voltage Li-ion
Battery

3DR Buttons
Controller
Controller
Mainboard
Link

Dials

Screen Joysticks

Figure 1.7.3.A: Controller Electrical System

9
1.8 Communication
To communicate with the operator, Solo runs three communication flows: joystick control input, video output, and
control input/telemetry output.

1.8.1 Controls
The operator can initiate control inputs from the Controller or the App. On the Controller, the mainboard receives
inputs from the joysticks, buttons, and dials and converts them to MAVlink commands. The mainboard sends the
MAVlink commands to 3DR Controller Link for transmission to Solo over the 3DR Link WiFi network. When initiated
from the App, control inputs are sent from the app over the 3DR Link network and received by 3DR Controller Link
which re-transmits the inputs to Solo over the 3DR Link network. The redirection of controls from the app is due to
the improved range of the Controller’s antennas. Solo receives the controls through 3DR Solo Link and transfers to
the data to Pixhawk via the Solo mainboard.

1.8.2 Joystick Control


Joystick control follows a unique communication flow from other control inputs. Once received by Solo, 3DR Solo
Link converts the MAVlink control inputs to Spektrum® DSMx radio control data. Pixhawk receives the control
inputs through the DSM port.

1.8.3 Smart Shots


Solo’s Smart Shots are autonomous flight patterns that make it easy to create aerial video. Smart Shots allow the
operator to choose points of interest in 3D space and fly specific patterns in relation to those points. The operator
can control Smart Shots from either the Controller or the app. When using the Controller with Smart Shots, the
joysticks are re-mapped to restrict Solo’s movement within the limitations of the Smart Shot. On the app, touch-
screen controls provide the same functionality as the joysticks. To Smart Shot control inputs and telemetry outputs,
the Shot Manager software module runs on 3DR Solo Link and regulates all control inputs to ensure compatibility
with any active Smart Shots.

1.8.4 Telemetry Output


Telemetry data from Solo is pushed from Pixhawk to 3DR Solo Link via the mainboard and transmitted to the
Controller over the 3DR Link network. On the Controller, 3DR Controller Link receives the outputs, translates the
MAVlink commands, and displays the live values on the Controller’s screen. To transmit data to the app, 3DR
Controller Link forwards the data to the app through the 3DR Link network.

10
Ground Joystick Control Input Control Input (Automated Control) Video Output
Air (Manual Control) & Telemetry Output

Operator
Hardware
Component

Controller 3DR Solo Controller Controller HDMI 3DR Solo


Joysticks APP Buttons Screen Output APP

Wireless
Network

Controller 3DR Link Controller Decode Decode


Mainboard Secure WiFi Mainboard
Network
Software
Process

Convert to 3DR Link


MAVlink Secure WiFi
Data Network
Conversion

3DR 3DR 3DR


Controller Link Controller Link Controller Link

3DR Link 3DR Link 3DR Link


Secure WiFi Secure WiFi Secure WiFi
Network Network Network

Encode

3DR Solo Link 3DR Solo Link 3DR Solo Link

Quality
Check

Shot Shot
Manager Manager

Convert
to DSMx

Solo Solo Solo


Mainboard Mainboard Mainboard

Pixhawk 2 Pixhawk 2

Control Control
Algorithm Algorithm

Convert Convert
to PWM to PWM

Solo Solo
Mainboard Mainboard

ESC 1 ESC 2 ESC 3 ESC 4 ESC 1 ESC 2 ESC 3 ESC 4


Camera

Motor 1 Motor 2 Motor 3 Motor 4 Motor 1 Motor 2 Motor 3 Motor 4

Actuated Flight

Figure 1.8.A: Solo Communication Flows

11
2 Setup
This sections covers everything you need to set up Solo out of the box.

2.1 In the Box


Solo includes the quadcopter vehicle, Controller, propellers (four plus two spares), Solo charger, and Controller
charger.
Three silver-top props
Solo & three black-top props

Controller

Controller charger

Solo charger

Figure 2.1.A: Solo Parts

Note: An additional, optional part is the Solo Gimbal, covered in chapter 3.

2.2 Battery
Solo is powered by the rechargeable Solo Smart Battery that provides approximately 25 minutes of flight time per
full charge. (Keep in mind that flight time depends on payload, wind conditions, elevation, temperature, humidity,
flying style and pilot skill, so the actual flight time may vary.) As a lithium polymer battery, the Solo Smart Battery
requires specific handling practices to ensure safe operation and prevent accidents. For more information about
battery safety, see Section 3.8.

2.2.1 Charging

The level of the battery is indicated by the lights below the power button. Press the power button once to display
the current power level. The Solo battery ships with approximately 50% charge, so charge fully before your first
flight for maximum flight time.

Remove the battery from Solo before charging. Charge the battery only with the designated Solo charger; using a
different charger can damage the battery or cause a fire. Charge the battery in conditions between 32° F and 113° F
only.

To charge the battery, connect the Solo charger to the battery and a wall outlet. While charging, the indicator lights
pulse at the current level, and when fully charged, the lights turn off. An additional indicator on the battery charger
turns from red to green when the battery is fully charged. The battery takes approximately 1.5 hours to charge fully.

12
Charge indicator

Charge indicator

Figure 2.2.1.A: Charge Solo Battery

2.2.2 Powering

To power Solo, insert the battery into Solo’s battery bay and slide the battery forward until it clicks into place. Press
and hold the battery power button to turn on Solo. When Solo power on, the battery will display an LED animate and
you will hear the startup tone. Power Solo only with the designated 3DR Solo Smart Battery; using a different battery
can damage Solo permanently.

Figure 2.2.2.A: Insert Solo Battery

Make sure Solo is level before powering on and keep Solo still during
power up and while the sensors initialize. Moving Solo during this
process causes the sensors to calibrate incorrectly and can create a
preflight error or affect in-flight performance.

13
2.3 Controller
The rechargeable lithium ion (Li-ion) Controller battery is housed inside the Controller, accessible by the battery door
at the back of the Controller. The Controller battery is pre-attached to the Controller, and shouldn’t be disconnected
unless:
• You plan to store the Controller for over three months without using it. In this case, disconnect the battery
from the Controller and leave the battery inside the Controller to store it.
• You need to switch the Controller battery for a new or upgraded Controller battery. Upgraded Controller
batteries with double the capacity are available from store.3dr.com. In the case where you need to store the
extra Controller battery, store it in location where it will not come into contact with metal objects or other
batteries. If the battery’s connector comes into contact with a metal object, it can short circuit the battery and
cause a fire.

2.3.1 Charging

Charge the Controller only with the designated Controller charger; using a different charger can damage the
Controller or cause a fire. Charge the Controller in conditions between 32° F and 113° F only.

To charge the Controller, connect the Controller charger to the barrel jack on the side of the Controller and to a
wall outlet. To check the battery level of the Controller, press the power button. A fully charged Controller lasts for
approximately six hours. Always check the Controller’s battery level before you fly, and recharge when prompted by
the Controller. The Controller takes approximately three hours to charge fully.

Figure 2.3.1.A: Charge Controller

14
2.3.2 Powering

To power on the Controller, press and hold the Controller power button until you receive the vibration feedback and
see the startup screen.

Figure 2.3.2.A: Power On Controller

15
2.4 Propellers
Solo uses two types of self-tightening propellers, indicated by the color of the circle at the center of the propeller.

2.4.1 Attaching

Attach the propellers with silver tops to the motors with a silver dot on the top of the motor shaft, and attach the
black-top propellers to the motors with the black dots. Make sure to remove the paper labels from the motors
before attaching the propellers.

Silver-top propellers tighten clockwise; black-top propellers tighten counterclockwise. Check the lock and unlock
icons on each propeller to see the correct directions for tightening and removing.

remove motor labels remove motor labels

Figure 2.4.1.A: Attach Propellers

16
2.5 Camera
Solo includes a fixed GoPro® The Frame™ mount for your GoPro® HERO 3, 3+ or 4. For information about using
the Solo Gimbal for GoPro® HERO 3+ and 4, see Chapter 3.

2.5.1 Attaching

To attach the camera to the GoPro® The Frame™ fixed mount, insert your GoPro® upside down and connect the
Solo HDMI cable to the camera. Alternatively, if using the 3-Axis Gimbal, see Chapter 3 for instructions.

GoPro® The Frame™


Your GoPro® Mount your GoPro® Connect the HDMI
HERO 3, 3+ or 4 upside down. cable.

Figure 2.5.1.A: Attach Camera

2.5.2 Settings

For best results, adjust the camera settings for inverted orientation and medium field of view. (Setting the field of
view to medium ensures that you won’t see the propellers in the frame.)

Set the GoPro® to


inverted orientation:

GoPro® Camera
Settings Orientation

Set the GoPro® to


medium field of view:

GoPro®
Settings

Figure 2.5.2.A: Camera Configuration Process

Make sure that the Wi-Fi on your GoPro® is turned OFF. It can
interfere with Solo’s communication signals and cause unexpected
behavior.

17
2.6 App
“3DR Solo” provides a streaming video link to a mobile device and provides a simple graphic interface for
interacting with Smart Shots and other advanced Solo features.

2.6.1 Install

Visit 3dr.com/soloapp or download “3DR Solo” from the App Store or Google Play Store. 3DR Solo works with iOS
8.0 or later and Android 4.1.2 or later.

2.6.2 Connect to Solo

To connect the app to the 3DR Link WiFi network, access the WiFi settings on the mobile device and select
SoloLink_####. Enter the temporary password “sololink”. Once connected, return to the app to continue.

LTE 7:34 PM

Settings

Airplane Mode

WI-FI Solo_Link-####

Bluetooth On

Cellular

Notifications

Control Center

Do Not Disturb

General

Sounds

Wallpapers & Brightness

Privacy

Figure 2.6.2.A: Connect to Solo Link

2.6.3 Update

Before your first flight, perform the required first-flight update for Solo and the Controller using the app. The
Controller prompts you for the update with the screen shown in the following figure.

Figure 2.6.3.A: Controller Preflight Update Prompt

1. To complete the update, open the app and tap the Settings button. Select Updates to begin the update
process. Ensure that both the Controller and Solo are powered, tap the Begin button, and the app will
automatically update the system wirelessly.

Figure 2.6.3.B: Solo App Update Process


18
Ensure that the Controller is connected to the charger during the update process. While the update is in
progress, the Controller displays the screen shown following. The Controller might complete a restart as part
of the update process.

Figure 2.6.3.C: Controller Updating Display

2. When the Controller update is complete, the Controller displays the following screen. Press A to continue
the update.

Figure 2.6.3.D: Controller Update Display

After you press A, Solo updates. While the update is in progress, the Controller displays “waiting for Solo”
and “Solo updating” (see following figure). When the update is complete, Solo’s LEDs display green and the
Controller returns to the standard startup screen.

Figure 2.6.3.E: Solo Update Displays

2.6.4 View Video

Before your first flight, verify that you can view video. To view video, Solo, the Controller, and the GoPro® must be
powered on. To view video after the update is complete, select Fly Solo.
Rusty Mitchell Support

SOLO VIDEO FLIGHT SCHOOL

Figure 2.6.4.A: Viewing Video on the App

19
3 The Solo Gimbal
With the 3-Axis Solo Gimbal, you get:
• Smooth and fluid HD footage every flight.
• Start and stop recording (HERO4 models) while you fly so you can pick and choose the shots you want.
• Footage stabilized to within 0.1 degree of pointing accuracy for enhanced Smart Shots.
• Fine-grain camera tilt control, including angle presets and instant speed adjustment.

If you have Solo with 3-Axis Gimbal, The Solo Gimbal comes installed and nearly ready to fly right out of the box. To
learn how to use your Solo with 3-Axis Gimbal, skip to section 3.2 of this chapter: Setting Up.

Otherwise, if you need to install a separately purchased Gimbal on a Solo currently equipped with the default
camera holder, The Frame, start with section 3.1, following.

3.1 Gimbal Installation


3.1.1 In the Box

The Solo 3-Axis Gimbal package includes the Solo Gimbal, the sunshade, four balance weights for the GoPro®
camera, and a screwdriver for installing the Gimbal.

Sunshade Balance weights (4) Screwdriver

Solo Gimbal

Figure 3.1.A: Solo Gimbal Parts

To install the Solo Gimbal and start utilizing its features, follow these Solo Gimbal installation instructions:

3.1.2 Remove The Frame

1. Flip Solo over to access the bottom of the vehicle.


2. The Frame is secured to Solo by three captive screws (permanently attached to the mount to prevent losing
them). Since these screws don’t come out all the way, loosen each screw until they can’t be backed out any
further.
3. Detach the mount from Solo by gently lifting up on it.
4. Route the HDMI cable out through the mount to complete the separation.

Gently
detach
the plate.
Turn over Solo.

Loosen the three screws Free the cable,


securing the mount. and remove the mount.

20
Figure 3.1.2.A: The Frame Removal
3.1.3 Connect Gimbal

1. Remove the foam insert holding the gimbal in place and set it to the side (this piece is used to help protect
the gimbal during travel).
2. On the bottom of the gimbal plate are two ports: one for the HDMI cable and one for the gimbal cable. Plug
in the cables running from Solo to their respective ports on the gimbal, as shown following.

Connect
HDMI cable.

Connect
gimbal cable.

Figure 3.1.3.A: Connecting cables

3.1.4 Position Cables

With both cables now connected to the Solo Gimbal, it is important to position each cable out of the way of other
internal components. When configuring the HDMI and gimbal cables, the HDMI cable should rest on top of the
gimbal cable.

1. Position the gimbal cable out out of the way by pushing any slack towards the front of the Solo Shell.

Tuck the Gimbal Cable’s slack


into the front of the Solo body

Figure 3.1.4.A: Positioning the Gimbal Cable

21
2. Loop the HDMI cable around and inside the front of the body, pushing any extra slack towards the pocket of
Arm #01, as shown following.

Tuck the HDMI Cable’s slack


into the side of the Solo body

Figure 3.1.4.B: Positioning the HDMI Cable

3.1.5 Mount the Gimbal

1. Position the gimbal plate over the opening in the Solo Shell, making sure that the three screw positions are
aligned (two in the back and one in front).
2. Slide the back of the plate in first, and then pinch the two front prongs in and down to insert the plate.

Figure 3.1.5.A: Mounting the Gimbal

3. When the plate is inserted and resting flush with the Solo Shell, tighten each of the three captive screws.

If the plate isn’t resting flush with the Solo Shell, the most likely cause is that the screws didn’t catch correctly. If the
screws are misaligned, do not try to tighten them. Back out any crooked screws with the screwdriver, then realign
them manually before tightening with the screwdriver.

22
3.2 Setting Up
The Solo Gimbal requires minimal setup. To get the Solo gimbal ready for your first flight, just follow these
directions:

3.2.1 Foam Block Removal

The Solo Gimbal comes with a protective foam block to help prevent damage during travel. The foam block must be
removed prior to powering on Solo and taking flight. To remove the foam block, gently slide it out in the direction the
annotated arrow is pointing. Save the foam block and replace it when you are done flying.

3.2.2 Camera Installation

Solo includes the 3-Axis Solo Gimbal, which holds your GoPro® HERO 3, 3+ or 4. To install your GoPro camera,
follow these directions:

1. To create space for your GoPro inside the camera housing, move the the rubber HDMI plug out and away
from the camera housing.

Figure 3.2.2.A: HDMI Plug Positioning

2. Slide your GoPro into place from the front and gently press it in until it is flush with the back of the camera
housing.

Figure 3.2.2.B: Attach GoPro

23
3. Take the rubber HDMI plug and insert into the exposed side of your GoPro. This simultaneously fastens the
GoPro into place and secures the HDMI connection. Your GoPro is now installed!

Figure 3.2.2.C: Fasten Camera

3.2.3 Add Balance Weights

Out of the box, the Solo Gimbal is perfectly weighted for use with the GoPro HERO4 Black. If you are using the
GoPro HERO4 Silver or the GoPro HERO3+, then you need to add balance weights to optimize these cameras for
use with the Solo Gimbal. To balance your GoPro, attach the corresponding balance weights to the threaded inserts
on the top and bottom of the camera housing, as shown in the following figure.

Figure 3.2.3.A: GoPro Weight Balancing

GoPro Weight Balancing®

HERO4 Black No blalance weights needed

HERO4 Silver Add the 2.7g balance weights

HERO3+ Silver Add the 6g balance weights

24
3.2.4 Add Sunshade

Flying on a sunny day? Use the sunshade to protect your video from glare. Simply press-fit the sunshade onto the
GoPro lens to install.

Figure 3.2.4.A: Adding the Sunshade

3.2.5 Update Your GoPro

The GoPro HERO4 Silver and HERO4 Black are fully optimized to work with the Solo Gimbal. In order to utilize
functionality like start and stop recording, your GoPro HERO4 must be fully up to date. Your GoPro can be updated
one of two ways: either you can update through your iOS or Android device or through your computer.

Option 1: Download the Update Using your iOS or Android Device


1. Make sure you have the GoPro App downloaded onto your iOS or Android device, and that you have an SD
Card with plenty of remaining space installed in your GoPro.
2. Turn on GoPro Wi-Fi by holding the button on the side.
3. Open the GoPro app.
4. Connect your camera.
5. When you get to the screen with the live video preview, tap the downloads button at the top of the screen.
It’s a circle with an arrow in the middle.
6. Follow the prompts to download and install the update.
7. Make sure the GoPro’s Wi-Fi is off before flying! Hold the button on the side to toggle the setting.

Option 2: Download the Update Using Your Computer


1. On your computer, navigate to ‘gopro.com/update’.
2. Choose your camera model from the list on the left.
3. Select “Update Your Camera Manually”.
4. Follow the instructions to register and update your GoPro.

25
3.2.6 Recommended GoPro Settings

For superior results, adjust your camera settings to these recommended values:

Resolution 1080P or 2.7K


Field of View Medium
Low Light Off
Spot Meter Off
Protune On (if available)
White balance Auto
Color GOPRO
ISO 400
Sharpness Medium
EV Comp 0

Figure 3.2.6.A: Camera Configuration Process

Make sure that the Wi-Fi on your GoPro® is turned OFF. Otherwise, it
can interfere with Solo’s communication signals and cause unexpected
behavior.

26
3.3 Gimbal Operation
The Solo Gimbal is a nearly autonomous tool. For example, it handles camera balancing and stabilization for you
automatically. However, we recommend that you be aware of some operational aspects of the Solo Gimbal, as well
as a handful of controls you can use.

3.3.1 Controlling the Solo Gimbal

To manually adjust the tilt angle of the Solo Gimbal, use the tilt control paddle to move the gimbal up and down.
You can also set up an automatic tilt control using the ‘1’ and ‘2’ button presets. These buttons are located above
and below the tilt speed dial as shown in Figure 3.2.1.A. To tilt to a preset angle, simply press either button and use
the dial to adjust the tilt speed. To save the current angle as a new preset, hold ‘1’ or ‘2’.

Automatic tilt control:


Press 1 or 2 to tilt to a preset angle,
hold 1 or 2 to save new angles
Manual tilt control

Adjust tilt speed


Solo controller (top view)

Figure 3.3.1.A: Gimbal Controls

3.3.2 LED Signals

On the back of the Solo Gimbal is an LED light that signals different status modes of the gimbal.

Figure 3.3.2.A: LED Gimbal Signal

27
The Gimbal LED displays several different signals:

• Breathing green: the gimbal is functioning properly and ready for use.
• Blinking orange: the gimbal is booting up (commonly seen while performing an update).
• Blinking blue: the gimbal has lost the communication signal. Please contact customer support.
• Breathing red: the gimbal is in a temporary fault mode. Restart the gimbal, and if the issue persists, please
contact customer support.
• Solid red: the gimbal is in an unrecoverable fault mode. Restart the gimbal, and if the issue persists, please
contact customer support.

3.3.3 Troubleshooting

If the Solo Gimbal is not working properly, follow the steps below to troubleshoot the problem:

3.3.3.1 The gimbal is not centered with respect to Solo


• Symptoms: The gimbal angle seems cockeyed or the beauty plate (at the top of the gimbal)
does not mount flush with the Solo bottom surface.
• Reason: Improper cable routing can cause the gimbal to be off-center. This also impairs
gimbal performance because of interference on dampers.
• Resolution: Make sure the HDMI cable is coiled from left to right in the big radius following
the contour of the Solo. As the Gimbal Data cable can interfere, make sure the Gimbal Data
cable is unwound and is not twisted. For details, go to https://3drobotics.com/kb/gimbal-
installation/.

3.3.3.2 Frozen GoPro


• Symptoms: GoPro doesn’t respond to a button press, either on the camera (physical button)
or in the Solo App.
• Reason: GoPro firmware is not up to date.
• Resolution: Your GoPro model must be Hero 3+ or higher. If so, follow these steps:
1. Remove the GoPro from the gimbal.
2. Remove the battery from the GoPro.
3. Wait 20 seconds.
4. Replace the battery.
5. Power on the GoPro. At this point, make sure the GoPro firmware is the latest version.

3.3.3.3 The gimbal is not turning on or responding


• Symptoms: Gimbal appears not to be receiving power.
• Reason: Possible connectivity issues.
• Resolution: Check the LED on the gimbal (behind the GoPro) and refer to the color guide in
Section 3.2.2 (preceding). If the LED is off, make sure the gimbal connector is plugged in and
seated properly.

If none of the preceding steps resolves your gimbal issue, please contact customer support at 3dr.com/support.

28
4 Safety
The following best practices will ensure safe, successful flights and help reduce the risk of accident and serious
injury.

Before your first flight, to help reduce the risk of accident and serious
injury, read and understand these important safety instructions.

4.1 Location
Never fly Solo indoors. Always fly in clear, open areas at a safe distance from yourself, other people, power lines,
animals, vehicles, trees, and buildings. When flying in areas with potential hazards, maintain a minimum distance of
100 feet from any people, vehicles, or structures. As the operator, you are responsible for navigating Solo to avoid
obstacles, including during automated flight.

Never fly within five miles of an airport or anywhere pilots operate manned aircraft, or within any airspace
restricted by your local, state or national airspace authority. As the operator, you are responsible for knowing and
understanding the regulations that govern small unmanned aircraft like Solo in your jurisdiction.

4.2 Environmental Awareness


Before flying, determine the boundaries of the safe flying area at your flying location. Be aware of any risks at your
location, including bodies of water, structures, trees, etc. Designate a few areas as safety zones where you can
safely land the copter in case of an unsafe situation. Throughout your flight, be prepared to recover Solo manually if
it goes outside the safe flying area.

Don’t fly Solo in extreme weather conditions such as rain, high winds, snow or fog. Environmental factors and GPS
irregularities can cause instability in flight, and this can affect Solo’s performance or cause an in-flight failure.

4.3 Propellers
Spinning propellers can cause serious injury. Never touch moving
propellers or place any objects in the way of the propeller arcs.

When prompted to start motors before takeoff, always ensure that the propellers are clear of any obstructions and
away from any people, animals, or property before activating. Do not touch moving propellers or approach Solo
while the propellers are spinning. Before approaching Solo, always hold the Fly button to stop the motors.

After an auto-landing or return home, Solo automatically detects the landing and stops the motors. Do not approach
Solo until the propellers stop spinning. After a manual landing, hold the throttle (left joystick) to the bottom-left
corner to stop the motors.

4.4 Home Position


Abstractly, Solo’s home position is the latitude and longitude coordinates of the launch point used by the autopilot
as the end point of a return home command. In practice, the autopilot saves the home position at the location where
the motors are started only after achieving GPS lock. If Solo does not acquire GPS lock before starting the motors,
no home position is saved and the return-to-home feature is unavailable.

29
4.5 Altitude & Safety Fence
Fly at appropriate altitude for your flying location and local regulations. Solo cannot avoid obstacles on its own, so
always select altitudes that avoid any obstacles, such as trees, buildings, and other tall structures.

Solo includes a 150-foot altitude safety fence enabled by default. This reflects current FAA recommendations
to avoid potential conflicts with manned aircraft and represents a safe line-of-sight altitude. If Solo reaches the
maximum altitude, it stops ascending and limits throttle input to stay below 400 feet. In this case, the screen shown
IN-FLIGHT ALERTS
following is displayed to the user to inform them to fly at a lower altitude.

Maximum Altitude
User is told that maximum altitude has been reached

Vehicle is not able to go higher than max altitude

Alert persists until:

TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

Maximum altitude
Solo has reached preset
maximum altitude

Figure 4.5.A: Controller Maximum Altitude Warning Crash Detected


User is prompted to use app to log a support ticket

Alert persists until:

User presses A

4.6 Emergency Procedures


If Solo exhibits instability in flight or flies outsideCrash detected
your designated safe flying area, perform one of Solo’s emergency
recovery procedures to land safely. Use 3DR Solo app to
log a support ticket
Press to dismiss
4.6.1 Pause
The Controller’s Pause button allows you to stop Solo mid-air. While paused, Solo hovers at the current location
GPS signal lost (Switches to FLY: Manual)
until given another command. Use the Pause button to stop Solo before hitting an obstacle or to reorient Solo for
navigation. If you are flying in an Advanced Flight Mode, Solo automatically switches to Fly
Alert persists mode after you press
until:
Pause. GPS lock is required to use Pause. TIMEOUT: 3000 milliseconds

4.6.2 Regain Manual Control GPS lost


During Smart Shots and other autonomous behaviors,
Switchingkeep the Controller
to manual control easily accessible, and be prepared to
Shot listcontrol
regain manual control at any time. To regain manual and Return to Home
during Smart Shots, press the Fly button.
are not available

4.6.3 Return Home


GPS signal recovered (Switches to FLY: Manual)
If Solo acquired GPS lock prior to takeoff, press the Controller’s Return Home button to return Solo to the launch
point and land. Use Return Home after receiving a low-battery notification or to end your flight easily.
Alert persists until:

TIMEOUT: 3000 milliseconds

4.6.4 Land
GPS
To land Solo at its current position, press and hold recovered
the Fly button. Solo will land immediately at the current
position. If Solo does not have GPS lock, the use
PressofFLY
Land is home
to set not recommended
location as drifting may occur depending on
environmental conditions.
Press FLY to take control

30
4.7 Power Management
The Controller monitors the level of the Controller battery and the Solo battery in flight. If either battery reaches low
levels during flight, the Controller announces the low battery state and provides an instruction to end your flight
and recharge the battery. If the Controller battery reaches a critical level during flight, Solo automatically returns to
home. If the Solo flight battery reaches a critical level, Solo automatically lands to prevent a crash.

Figure 4.7.A: Low Controller battery warning and return-home notifications

Figure 4.7.B: Low flight battery warning and auto-land notifications

4.8 Flight Battery


Use caution when handling the Solo Smart Battery; there is a risk of fire if the battery is handled roughly enough
to damage it. Never alter, puncture, throw, bend or impact the battery. Keep the battery away from liquids, fire,
microwaves, and other hazardous or combustible materials. Don’t expose the battery to extreme temperatures. The
battery functions optimally when used in -4° F to 140° F; operating Solo at the extremes of this range can affect its
performance. If the battery is hot to the touch, wait for it to cool before using or charging.

Inspect the battery before and after each flight. It is possible for the battery to be damaged in shipping, use or
charging. If you notice any abnormal features such as damage to the exterior shell, swelling, deformation of the
battery, abnormal smell, leakage, or other unexpected behavior, do not use the battery! These can be signs of
serious damage that can cause the battery to catch fire or explode. In this case, do not use the battery again.
Disconnect the battery, place the battery in a safe area outside of any buildings or vehicles and away from fire and
flammable materials to prevent a hazard in case of fire or explosion.

For long term storage, the battery will last longer if you store it in 64° F to 82° F, between 45-85% relative humidity
and with 50% charge (instead of at empty). Always make sure to store the battery in a place where it won’t be
exposed to extreme temperatures or direct sunlight.

31
4.9 Controller
Keep the Controller away from liquids, fire, microwaves, and other hazardous or combustible materials. Don’t
expose the Controller to extreme temperatures. The Controller functions optimally when used at temperatures
between -4° F and 140° F. If the Controller is hot to the touch, wait for it to cool before using or charging.

Perform periodic visual inspections of the Controller battery to check for any damage. It is possible for the battery to
be damaged in shipping, use or charging. If you notice any abnormal features such as damage to the exterior shell,
swelling, deformation of the battery, abnormal smell, leakage, or other unexpected behavior, do not use the battery!
These can be signs of serious damage that can cause the battery to catch fire or explode. In this case, do not use
the battery again. Disconnect the battery, place the battery in a safe area outside of any buildings or vehicles and
away from fire and flammable materials to prevent a hazard in case of fire or explosion.

For long term storage, the Controller battery will last longer if you store it at temperatures between 64° F and 82° F,
between 45-85% relative humidity and with 50% charge (instead of empty). Always store the Controller in a location
where it won’t be exposed to extreme temperatures or direct sunlight.

4.10 GPS Management


Solo requires an active GPS signal for advanced automated functions and Smart Shots. After powering on, Solo
waits to acquire a strong GPS lock. The following requirements define a GPS lock:

• Reported horizontal position accuracy <5m


IN-FLIGHT ALERTS
• Reported speed accuracy < 1 m/s
• Number of satellites ≥ 6
• Difference between GPS and inertial navigation vertical velocity < 1 m/s
Maximum Altitude
User is told that maximum altitude has been reached

After acquiring GPS lock, Solo enters into standard flight, known as fly mode, and all isadvanced
Vehicle features
not able to go higher than maxand Smart
altitude

Shots are available, including Return Home. If GPS lock is not acquired before takeoff, Return
Alert persists until: Home is unavailable
for the duration of the flight and the user has the option of taking off in non-GPS-assisted Fly: Manual mode by
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds
pressing A (Figure 4.10.A).
Maximum altitude
(Advanced mode enabled)

GPS Check Solo has reached preset GPS Check


(Advanced mode not enabled)
System must have GPS lock in order to 100%maximum altitude
FLIGHT
BATTERY
User is able to skip and fly without GPS

reach Fly-button screen. Persists until GPS lock is achieved or users presses A.

Searches for GPS lock until it is achieved


Waiting for GPS
GPS lock takes user to Fly-button screen. Crash Detected
User is prompted to use app to log a support ticket User skips GPS C
Presses A to use F
FLY: MANUAL Alert persists until:

User presses A
555656
Fly: Manual Orbit

Crash detected
GPS lock confirmation Figure 4.10.A: Use 3DR Solo
Controller app to
Waiting-for-GPS Prompt GPS lock confirmation

Fly button prompt is displayed 100%log a support ticket


FLIGHT
BATTERY Fly button prompt is displayed
Press
If GPS is lost during flight, the Controller displays the to dismiss
screen shown in the following figure and switches from GPS-
assisted Fly mode to Fly: Manual. If GPS is recovered during flight, the user is informed that standard Fly mode is
now available. Hold FLY to start motors
GPS signal lost (Switches to FLY: Manual)

FLY Alert persists until:

555656 TIMEOUT: 3000 milliseconds


Cable Cam Orbit

GPS lost
Switching to manual control
Shot list and Return to Home
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
are not available

HoldController
Figure 4.10.B: FLY to start
GPSmotors
Lost Notification
GPS signal recovered (Switches to FLY: Manual)
32

FLY
Alert persists until:
Controller Value out of Range
User is asked to contact customer support Controller signal lost, RTH screen

Contact
Solo will return to home
3DR Support after landing
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
Alert persists until:
Alert persists until:

005
003
ALTITUDE
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds Co
IN-FLIGHT ALERTS: CONTROLLER RELATED TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

go to persistent hint-box message

Control stick error Controller signal lost


(persistent until reboot)
Controller Value out of Range RC Failsafe
006
User is asked to contact customer support Controller
TOsignal
HOMElost, RTH screen
100% RETURN
FLIGHT

4.11 Signal Management


Solo will return to home
Contact 3DR Support after landing
Returning to home
Alert persists until:
BATTERY
Alert persists until:

005
Control stick error

003
ALTITUDE
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds TIMEOUT:
Contact 3DR Support5000 milliseconds
after landing
Flying behind solid objects, like buildings and trees, blocks communication
go to persistent hint-boxsignals
message between Solo and the Controller.
Always maintain visual contact with Solo to ensure that the signal is unobstructed. Cell phone towers and nearby
Controlwith
WiFi signals can cause interference stick error
the communication Controller signal lost
(persistent until reboot)
system
006
RC Failsafe and decrease its range. Avoid flying in
RC Signal Recovered
RETURN TO HOME
populated areas to avoid sources of return
Solo will interference.
to home
Controller signal lost, RTH screen
Returning to home User can press Fly to recover

Contact 3DR Support after landing Alert persists until: Alert persists
Control until:
stick error
If the communication signal with the Controller is lost during flight,
TIMEOUT:Solo will automatically return
5000 milliseconds home
Contact 3DR ifSupport
it hasafter
GPS landing
User presses Fly and enters Fly mode
lock. If the signal is recovered, the user will be prompted to re-take control and cancel the return-home command.
HAPTIC: 40millisecond so user is aware that they can tak

Controller signal lost Signal recovered


RC Failsafe
Controller signal lost, RTH screen
RC Signal Recovered
User can press Fly to recover
Returning to home
Alert persists until: Alert persists until:

TIMEOUT:Press FLY to
5000 milliseconds take control User presses Fly and enters Fly mode

HAPTIC: 40millisecond so user is aware that they can tak

Controller signal lost Signal recovered


RC Signal Recovered
RC Failsafe (No GPS)
Controller signal lost,
Returning to home User can press Fly to recover emergency land screen
Alert persists until: Alert persists until:
Press FLY to take control
User presses Fly and enters Fly mode TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds
HAPTIC: 40millisecond so user is aware that they can take control

SignalFigure 4.11.A: Controller Signal LostController


recovered signal lost
Warnings With GPS
RC Signal Recovered
RC Failsafe (No GPS)
Controller signal lost,
User can press Fly to recover
Controller signal lost, GPS signal lost emergency land screen
Emergency
Alert persists until: landing started
Alert persists until:
If there is no GPS lock and the Controller
Press signal
FLY to take is lost, Solo will
control initiate
User presses an enters
Fly and emergency
Fly mode landing and display the
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds
screen shown in Figure 4.11.B. HAPTIC: 40millisecond so user is aware that they can take control

Signal recovered Controller signal lost


RC Failsafe (No GPS) RC Signal Recovered (No GPS)
Controller signal lost, User can press Fly to enter Fly:Manual
Controller signal
lost, GPS signal lost
emergency land screen
Emergency landing started Alert persists until:
Alert persists until:
Press FLY to take control User presses Fly and enters Fly: Manual
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

Controller signal lost Signal recovered


RC Failsafe (No GPS) RC Signal Recovered (No GPS)
Controller signal lost, User can press Fly to enter Fly:Manual
Controller signal lost, GPS signal lost Solo
emergency land will
screen enter Fly:Manual
Alert persists until:
Emergency landing started Alert persists until: FLY
Press to take control
User presses Fly and enters Fly: Manual
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

Controller signal
Figure 4.11.B: Controller Signal
lost Signal Lost Warnings recovered
Without GPS
RC Signal Recovered (No GPS)
Controller signal lost, GPS signal lost Solo
User can press will
Fly to enter
enter Fly:Manual
Fly:Manual
Emergency landing started Alert persists until: Camera paddle and dial failure
Press FLY to take control
100% FLIGHT
User presses Fly and enters Fly: Manual
BATTERY Alert triggered on input error on the paddle
or tilt speed dial potentiometers

009
003
ALTITUDE
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds
Signal recovered RC Signal Recovered (No GPS)

Solo will enter Fly:Manual


User can press Fly to enter Fly:Manual

Alert persists until:


002 Camera paddle and dial failure
Press FLY to take control FLY
100% FLIGHT
User presses Fly and enters Fly: Manual
BATTERY Alert triggered on input error on the paddle
or tilt speed dial potentiometers
Manual camera controls error
009
003
ALTITUDE
Spot lock Rewind
Contact 3DR Support
Signal recovered TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

Solo will enter Fly:Manual


002
Press FLY to take control Camera paddle and dial failure
FLY

100% FLIGHT
BATTERY Alert triggered on input error on the paddle
Manual
or tilt speed camera controls error
dial potentiometers
Spot lock Rewind
009
003
ALTITUDE
Contact 3DR Support
TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

002 Camera paddle and dial failure

100% FLIGHT FLY


BATTERY Alert triggered on input error on the paddle
or tilt speed dial potentiometers
Manualcamera controls error
009
003
ALTITUDE
Spot lock Rewind 33
Contact 3DR Support TIMEOUT: 5000 milliseconds

002
5 Operating Procedures
This section covers the complete procedures for flying Solo, including preflight checks, manual control, automatic
recall, and Smart Shots.
(Advanced mode enabled)

GPS Check GPS Check


(Advanced mode not enabled) User is able to skip and fly without GPS
100% FLIGHT

5.1 Takeoff
System must have GPS lock in order to
reach Fly-button screen.
BATTERY
Persists until GPS lock is achieved or users presses A.

Searches for GPS lock until it is achieved


Waiting
Solo provides two options for taking off: manual and for GPS
automatic. We recommend using automatic takeoff to begin
GPS lock takes user to Fly-button screen.
the flight. User skips GPS C
Presses A to use F
FLY: MANUAL
5.1.1 Start Motors
555656
When you’re ready to fly, the Controller promptsFly:you to hold the
Manual Fly button to start Solo’s motors. Hold Fly until
Orbit
the propellers spin. Solo is now active, ready for takeoff, and needs to be treated with appropriate caution to avoid
safety hazards.
GPS lock confirmation GPS lock confirmation

Fly button prompt is displayed 100% FLIGHT


BATTERY Fly button prompt is displayed

Hold FLY to start motors

FLY

555656
Cable Cam Orbit

TAKEOFF PART 2

Figure 5.1.1.A: Start Motors


100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
Auto-takeoff
Green bar returns to zero progress position
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
Spinning propellers can cause serious injury! Always make sure on transition.

Solo is clear of any obstructions and all people and animals areUser
away
holds “Fly” to initiate auto-takeoff.
Hold
48,92
from Solo before spinning the FLY to start motors
98,86 136,92
props.
Hold FLY for auto-takeoff
“Fly” button LED blinks on Artoo when motors
are on. LED becomes solid white when takeoff
begins.
FLY
FLY
555656
Spot lock 555656 Rewind
5.1.2 Automatic Takeoff Spot lock Rewind
Hold Fly again to initiate automatic takeoff. Solo rises to 10 feet and hovers until receiving further control inputs.
Auto-takeoff
User holds “Fly” to initiate auto-takeoff.
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
“Fly” button LED blinks on Artoo when motors
are on. LED becomes solid white when takeoff
begins.
Hold FLY for auto-takeoff

FLY

555656
Spot lock Rewind

Auto-takeoff
Figure 5.1.2.A
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
User holds “Fly” to initiate auto-takeoff.

“Fly” button LED blinks on Artoo when motors


are on. LED becomes solid white when takeoff
begins.
5.1.3 Manual Takeoff Hold FLY for auto-takeoff Haptic: press and hold feedback is given.
Once the propellers are spinning, raise the throttle stick above the center position to increase Solo’s altitude and
take off. FLY

555656
Spot lock Rewind

Auto-takeoff message
34
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
During auto-takeoff, target altitude message is
displayed.

002
ALTITUDE Message times out after 3000 milliseconds.
5.2 Land
There are three options for landing Solo: manual, automatic, and return to launch (also known as Return Home). We
recommend automatic landing and return to launch.

5.2.1 Automatic Land


For auto-landing (recommended), press the Fly button in flight, and Solo will land at the current position.
Optionally, you can auto-land Solo at the home position using the Controller’s Return Home button (see following
section for more information about return to home.) After an auto-landing or return-to-home, the propellers will stop
spinning automatically; wait until the propellers stop spinning before approaching Solo.

When commanded to auto-land, Solo will land at the current position


wherever it is. Always make sure there is a clear path to a safe landing
point directly below Solo before triggering an auto-landing.

5.2.2 Return Home


The Return Home button ends your flight automatically by first returning Solo to the home position (launch point)
then auto-landing. The propellers stop spinning automatically after activating Return Home.

When commanded to return to home, Solo:


1. Achieves minimum altitude of 75 feet or maintains current altitude if above 75 ft.
2. Moves to launch point and hovers for five seconds.
3. Lands at the home point, and the propellers automatically stop after a few seconds.

49 ft. hover 5 seconds

home

Figure 5.2.2.A: Return Home Behavior

Never approach Solo while the propellers are spinning. After an


auto-landing or return-to-home, always wait until the propellers stop
before approaching or touching Solo. For a manual landing, hold the
Fly button until the propellers stop before handling Solo.

5.2.3 Manual Land


For manual landing, move the left stick slightly below center, and slowly decrease Solo’s altitude. When it is a
few inches above the ground, hold the left stick fully back. Continue to hold the left stick fully back and hold the
Controller’s Fly button until the props stop spinning.

35
Auto-takeoff message

100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
During auto-takeoff, target altitude message is
displayed.

002
003
ALTITUDE Message times out after 3000 milliseconds.

004
5.3 In-Flight Data
LOITER
AUTO-TAKEOFF
Banner height

Spot lockTO 5 FT ALTITUDE


GOING Rewind 65 px height (from bottom)
or starts at 0,175
Use the Controller’s main data display to monitor Solo’s status in flight.
3 4 5
Telemetry
2
100% FLIGHT
BATTERY
Back on telemetry screen after auto-takeoff.

003
005
ALTITUDE
6
1
000 7
FLY 8

Spot lock Rewind 9

Figure 5.3.A: Controller In-Flight Data Display

1 Current altitude in feet


Keep Solo below 400 feet at all times. Solo returns to home if flown higher than 400 feet from home.

2 GPS signal status


Icon illuminates to indicate active GPS lock. GPS flight, pause, return to home, selfie and cable cam
modes require GPS lock. Solo automatically switches to manual flight when no GPS lock is available.

3 Percentage of Solo battery remaining


The Controller provides notifications at 20% and 10% to end your flight. At 0%, Solo automatically
lands at the current position.

4 Signal strength between Solo and Controller


Solo returns to home if the signal between Solo and the Controller is lost during flight.

5 Controller battery level


The Controller provides a notification to end your flight when the Controller battery is low. When the
Controller battery reaches 0%, Solo automatically returns to home.

6 Current distance from the home point in feet


Keep Solo within 2,000 feet from home at all times. Solo return to home if flown farther than 2,000 feet
from home.

7 Current speed in miles per hour

8 Current mode

9 Currently assigned functions of Controller A and B buttons

36
5.4 Joystick Control
The Controller’s two joysticks allow you to navigate Solo in flight. The left stick controls Solo’s altitude and rotation.

UP

Left Stick
ROTATE ROTATE
LEFT RIGHT

DOWN

Figure 5.4.A: Controller Left Joystick

Move the left stick vertically to control Solo’s altitude and acceleration.

Left Stick
To take off and to gain altitude,
move the left stick slightly past
the center position.

Set the left stick to center to


maintain the current altitude.

Move the left stick back from


center to decrease altitude. Left Stick

Left Stick

Set the left stick fully back to


land once Solo is a few inches
above the ground.

Figure 5.4.B: Throttle Joystick Behaviors

37
Hover + Land Left Stick
to hover Left
Lower just slightly
to hover Left

Move the left stick horizontally to rotate Solo and control orientation.
Left Yaw
Left Yaw
Right
Move the stick to the left to
rotate counterclockwise. Right

Right Yaw
Right Yaw
Move the stick to the right to
rotate clockwise.

Release the stick to stop


rotating the maintain the
Deactivate
current orientation
Hold until propellers
Deactivate
stop spinning
Hold until propellers
stop spinning

Figure 5.4.C: Yaw Joystick Behavior

Use the right stick to fly Solo forward, back, left and right in space. These movements are relative to Solo’s current
orientation, so always maintain awareness of Solo’s forward-facing direction before using right-stick controls.

FORWARD

LEFT RIGHT

BACK

Figure 5.4.D: Controller Right Joystick Controls

38
Move the right stick vertically to control pitch.

Activate
Activate
Hold until propellers
Hold spinning.
start until propellers Move the right stick Forward
start spinning.
forward to fly forward. Forward
ctivate
old until propellers
ctivate Forward
art spinning.
Take-off
old + Lift
until propellers
Take-off
Raise just+slightly
art spinning. Lift Forward
Raise
for just
take offslightly Move the right stick
Back
back to fly backward.
for take off Back
ake-off + Lift
aise just slightly
ake-off + Lift
r take off Back
aise
Hoverjust+ slightly
Land
rLower
take off
Hover + Land
just slightly
Figure 5.4.E: Pitch Joystick Controls
Back
Lower
to hoverjust slightly Left
to hover Move the right stick horizontally to control roll.
Left
over + Land
ower just slightly
over + Land
hover Left
ower just slightly
Left
hoverYaw Move the right stick Left
Left Yaw left to fly left.
Right
Right
eft Yaw
eft Yaw
Move the right stick right Right
Right Yaw to fly right.
Right Yaw Right

ight Yaw Figure 5.4.F: Roll Joystick Controls

ight Yaw

Deactivate If you’re new to drones, take some time to learn the basics before your
Deactivate
Hold until propellers first flight. Visit 3dr.com/solo/info or check out Flight School in the Solo
app to learn about flight controls and best practices.
Hold until propellers
stop spinning
stop spinning
eactivate
old until propellers
eactivate
op spinning
old until propellers
op spinning 39
5.5 Smart Shots
Solo’s Smart Shots automate video capturing to make it easy to replicate traditional filming techniques. Smart Shots
can be useful for designing artistic video or for automating the flight procedure to restrict Solo to within a designated
area.

5.5.1 Selfie
Solo performs an automated maneuver to capture a subject in a cinematic establishing shot.

To take a selfie:
1. Navigate Solo manually so the subject appears in the video frame with Solo approximately 10 feet from the
subject.
2. Ensure that there is 100 feet of unobstructed space behind and above Solo.
3. Use the Smart Shots feature in the app to start the Selfie shot.
4. Solo flies backward 100 ft and upward 100 ft in a smooth arc.
5. Press pause to stop the automatic maneuver and use the right stick to move manually along the selfie path.

Use the Solo app to configure the distance and speed of the selfie shot or to activate selfie mode
before takeoff.

5.5.2 Cable Cam


Create a smooth shot by flying Solo along an virtual cable between two preset points.

To fly a cable cam:


1. Press A on the Controller to enter Cable Cam mode.
2. Navigate Solo manually to the first point so the video displays the desired subject, and press A to save the
first point.
3. Navigate manually to the second point, and press A again to save the second point. Add a difference of
altitude or orientation between the two points for an impressive cinematic effect.
4. Use the right stick to fly along the cable in either direction.

Use the Solo app to configure and interact with automatic cable cam shots.

5.5.3 Orbit
Fly along a preset circle while fixing the camera on a target.

To fly an orbit shot:


1. Enter Orbit using the app or by setting an Orbit preset on the Controller.
2. Fly Solo to the location where you would like to start the Orbit with Solo facing the target subject.
3. Press the B button on the Controller.
4. The orbit shot is now established around the subject. To manuever Solo during Orbit, use the following
controls:
• Move Solo towards the target by pressing the right stick upward.
• Move Solo away from the target by pressing the right stick downward.
• Move Solo around the target by pressing the right stick left and right.
• Change Solo’s altitude by pressing the left stick upward and downward.
• Nudge yaw by pressing the left stick left and right.
• Raise and lower the target by pressing the camera paddle.

5.5.4 Follow
Creates a virtual tether between Solo and any subject; as the subject moves, so does Solo.

To fly a Follow shot:


1. Use the Smart Shots feature in the app to start the Follow shot.
2. Fly Solo to the location where you would like to start the shot with Solo facing the target subject. If you are
not the subject, let the subject carry the mobile device.

40
3. To begin following, tap the instruction bar at the bottom of the app screen.
4. The Follow shot is now established with respect to the subject. Use the following controls to maneuver Solo
during Follow:
• Adjust the follow distance by moving the right stick vertically.
• Orbit the subject by moving the right stick horizontally.
• Adjust Solo’s altitude by moving the left stick vertically.
• To override the camera tracking and temporarily pan the camera, move the left stick horizontally.
• To stop Solo during Follow, press Pause; the camera continues to track the subject.
• To exit to standard flight, press Fly.

41
6 Maintenance
Solo’s components are designed to absorb impact from hard landings and protect the core electronics. If Solo’s
legs or motors sustain damage, replace them with official 3DR parts from store.3dr.com or an authorized retailer.
Please note that any repairs performed by an unauthorized 3DR retailer void the warranty.

This chapter walks you through the replacement of Solo components in order of their accessibility. Replaceable
components include Solo’s legs, motor pods, GPS module, mainboard, Pixhawk 2, Solo Link, and shell.

The following replacement parts are available for purchase:

Legs
Replacement Legs: PN #LG11A
Compass Leg: PN #LC11A
Solo LED Cover: PN #LE11A

Motors
Clockwise Motor Pod: PN #CW11A
Counter Clockwise Motor Pod: PN #AW11A

GPS Module
Solo GPS: PN #GP11A
Solo GPS Cover: PN #GC11A

Interior Electronics
Solo Mainboard: PN #MB11A
Solo Mainboard Assembly: PN #MA11A
Pixhawk 2: PN #PH11A
Solo Link: PN #SL11A

Tools required for Solo maintenance:

• #1 Philips Screwdriver
• Flathead Screwdriver
• Needle Nose Pliers
• Super-X® Glue
• Kapton® Tape
• X-ACTO® Knife
• Loctite® Threadlocker
• Wire Cutter

After disassembly, the reuse of any screw for reassembly requires the application of Loctite® Threadlocker.

42
6.1 Legs
Solo uses four unique types of legs:

• Leg #01 with an antenna module and longer antenna cable


• Leg #02 with an antenna module and shorter antenna cable
• Leg #03 without any electronic components
• Leg #04 with compass module and compass cable

Leg Replacement Parts

Part Number

Solo Replacement Leg Set


#LG11A
(Set of 2 legs with rubber feet)

Solo Replacement Leg with Compass


#LC11A
(Replacement leg with compass installed)

Figure 6.1.A: Leg Replacement Parts

Standard Leg 03 01 Antenna Leg (long cable)

Antenna Leg (short cable) 02 04 Compass Leg

Figure 6.1.B: Solo Leg Diagram Overhead

Antenna
1

Compass

Antenna

Standard

Figure 6.1.C: Solo Leg Diagram Side View


43
6.1.1 Standard Leg Replacement (Leg #03)
To replace a standard leg, use a #1 Phillips screwdriver to remove the two screws, detach the old leg, and attach
the new leg using the provided screws.

Figure 6.1.1.A: Standard Leg Replacement

6.1.2 Antenna Leg Replacement (Legs #01 and #02)


Damage to Solo Leg #01 or #02 can result in one of two scenarios:

• If only the leg sustains damage, while the antenna cable remains intact and unharmed, refer to Section 6.1.2.1
for instructions on how to replace the damaged leg while retaining the original antenna cable.

• If both the leg and the antenna cable are damaged, refer to Section 6.1.2.2 for information on how to replace
both components.

6.1.2.1 Replacing Damaged Legs While Retaining Original Antenna Cables

To replace a leg with an antenna module where the antenna is not damaged:
1. Remove the antenna from the old leg.
2. Attach a new leg.
3. Secure the antenna to the new leg.

44
To detach the antenna:
1. Remove the plastic sheet from the leg (1).
2. Detach the antenna from the velcro by carefully pulling the cable (2).
3. Follow the standard leg-replacement procedure to remove and detach the old leg (3) as described in Section
6.1.1, preceding.

1
3

Figure 6.1.2.A: Detaching the Antenna from the Leg

Attach the new leg (1) by threading the antenna cable through the notch in the top of the leg (2).

2
1

Figure 6.1.2.B: Attaching a New Leg with an Existing Antenna

To secure the antenna to the new leg, follow these steps:


1. Using the included velcro, attach only the yellow-backed velcro strip to the velcro on the antenna (1).
2. Remove the backing and attach the velcro and antenna to the inside of the leg, placing the tip of the antenna
5 mm from the edge of the rubber foot (2) as shown in Figure 6.1.2.C.
3. Fold the ends of the included plastic sheet at right angles (3), remove the adhesive backing, and stick the
plastic sheet to the leg so it secures the antenna in place (4).

45
6.1.2.2 Replacing Damaged Legs and Antenna Cables
If the antenna cable in the damaged leg (#01 or #02) is also damaged and requires replacement, then you need
to replace both the leg and the corresponding antenna cable. This involves detaching the damaged leg and then
opening the main electronics bay to access the mainboard where the antenna cables are connected. Follow these
steps:

1. Follow the instructions in Sections 6.4.1 and 6.4.1.1 to disconnect the antenna lead from the Solo Link
board in the main electronics bay.

2. Follow the instructions in Section 6.1.1 to remove the leg from the Solo body. When you remove the
damaged leg, the leg’s attached antenna cable also comes out, since you disconnected it in the preceding
step.

3. Take the new antenna lead, thread it back through the notch at the top of the new leg, and follow the
instructions in Section 6.4.3.3 to attach the new antenna lead to the Solo Link board.

4. Replace the leg and secure with the two screws.

6.1.3 Compass Leg Replacement (Leg #04)


Solo’s right-rear leg (#04) contains the compass module. To replace the compass leg:
1. Access the compass connector by removing the battery tray (see Section 6.3.2).
2. Use a Phillips #1 screwdriver to remove the two screws securing the leg to the arm (Figure 6.1.1.A).
3. With the battery tray removed, locate the compass connector in the corner of the board closest to the leg
being replaced.
4. Disconnect the compass connector from the board by holding down the tab on the far side of the connector
and lifting up the connector. As the space between the arm and the connector is limited, it might help to use
the screwdriver to press the tab.

Figure 6.1.3.A: Compass Connector on Mainboard

5. With the compass disconnected, remove the old leg and cable from Solo.
6. Place the new leg into position and thread the new compass cable through the arm where it can connect to
the board.

46
7. Connect the new compass connector in the same place as the old connector.

Figure 6.1.3.B: Insert New Leg with Compass

8. Secure the new leg in place by using the two screws to secure the leg to the underside of arm. Finally,
replace the battery tray (see Section 6.3.4).

47
6.2 Motor Pods
Replacement motors are available as clockwise and counterclockwise motor pods. Use a counterclockwise (silver)
motor pod to replace motors on arms #01 and #02, and use a clockwise (black) motor pod to replace motors on
arms #03 and #04.

Replacement Motor Pod Parts

Part US UK France Australia UAE

Solo Clockwise Motor Pod #CW11A #CW12A #CW15A #CW13A #CW17A

Solo Counterclockwise Motor Pod #AW11A #AW12A #AW15A #AW13A #AW17A

Figure 6.2.A: Replacement Motor Pod Parts

6.2.1 Motor Pod Removal


To remove the motor pod:
1. Use a small, flat prying tool to remove the LED cover from the underside of the arm, as shown following.

Figure 6.2.1.A: LED Cover Removal

2. Use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the four screws that secure the pod to the arm.

Figure 6.2.1.B: Motor Pod Removal


48
3. Gently extract the motor pod by pulling the motor upward.
4. Disconnect the red and black wires.
5. To remove the wide beige connector, carefully lift the edges of the connector away from the pod using a flat
screwdriver until they pop out, then remove the connector. Don’t disconnect by pulling on the wires! The
connector can break easily if force is used to remove it.

Figure 6.2.1.C: Motor Pod Disconnection

6.2.2 Motor Pod Replacement


To insert a new motor pod:
1. Gently pull the wires about one inch outside of the arm to facilitate reattachment, as shown in the Figure
6.2.2.A, following.
2. Connect the three cables from the arm to the new motor pod.
3. Feed the cables inside the arm and set the pod into place.

Figure 6.2.2.A: Motor Pod Connection

49
4. Turn over Solo and replace the four screws (apply Loctite) to secure the new motor pod into place. Snap the
LED cover back into place.

Figure 6.2.2.B: Screw and Led Motor Pod Replacement

6.3 GPS Module


The battery tray holds the battery and GPS module in place, and allows you to access the main electronics bay. This
section covers how to remove the battery tray to access the interior of Solo and how to replace the GPS module.
Before opening the battery bay or performing any maintenance on Solo, always ensure that Solo is powered off with
the battery removed.

This section proceeds in sequential order of the components to remove until you reach the main electronics bay.
Simply follow these instructions in order.

Replaceable GPS Parts

Part Number

Solo GPS #GP11A

Solo GPS Cover #GC11A

Figure 6.3.A: Replaceable GPS Parts

50
6.3.1 GPS Cover Removal
The GPS cover is the flat, black end cap in front of the battery tray. To remove the GPS cover, use your fingernails
(1) to release the side clips outward. Next, lift slightly while pushing forward (2) to pop the cover off completely.

Figure 6.3.1.A: GPS Cover Removal

6.3.2 Battery Tray Removal


To detach the battery tray and also access Solo’s main electronics bay:
1. Remove the GPS cover (Section 6.3.1, preceding).
2. Use a #1 Philips screwdriver to remove the seven screws that secure the battery tray to Solo.

Figure 6.3.2.A: Battery Tray Screw Locations

3. Once the screws are removed, lift the tray up, then slide out and back. Be careful to clear the battery
prongs; these are not part of the battery tray.

Figure 6.3.2.B: Battery Prong Clearance

51
4. The battery tray is still connected to Solo via the GPS cable. Carefully lift the tray out just enough to access
the board beneath.
5. To detach the battery tray completely from Solo, disconnect the GPS connector from the mainboard. Be
sure to depress the locking tab on the connector when removing the tray.

GPS connector

Figure 6.3.2.C: GPS Cable Detachment

6.3.3 GPS Module Replacement


The GPS module resides inside the battery tray. To replace the GPS module:
1. Remove the battery tray by following the instructions in Section 6.3.2, preceding.
2. On the underside of the battery tray, disconnect the GPS connector, and use a #2 Phillips screwdriver to
remove the two screws in the shielding.

Remove

GPS connector

Figure 6.3.3.A: GPS Shielding Removal

3. Pull the shielding away to expose the GPS module. Remove the two screws that secure the GPS module to
the battery tray.

Remove

Figure 6.3.3.B: GPS Module Screw Removal

52
4. To attach a new GPS module, place the GPS antenna-side down into the battery tray and screw in the top-
left and bottom-right screws as seen in Figure 6.3.3.C, following. Make sure the antenna side is down and
the GPS connector is facing up.

Replace first

Figure 6.3.3.C: GPS Module Replacement

5. Place the shielding over the GPS and mold it to the shape of the battery tray.
6. Add the remaining two screws to secure the shielding and GPS, and
7. When you are ready to replace the battery tray, connect the GPS cable back in its original location, as
shown in Figure 6.3.2.C.

6.3.4 Battery Tray Replacement


To replace the battery tray:
1. Connect the GPS cable to the connector shown in Figure 6.3.2.C.
2. To set up the battery tray for successful alignment, drop the tray into the shell and making sure the vertical
tab from the mainboard’s battery plug fits into the battery tray’s designated receptor (Figure 6.3.4.A,
following). When replacing the battery tray, it is important to make sure that the tray sits flush in the Solo
Shell.

Figure 6.3.4.A: Battery Tray Tab Alignment

53
3. After lining up the battery plug tab with the battery tray, it just takes some maneuvering to make sure
everything sits flush. Gently rock the tray back and forth and side to side until it sits flush on the shell. If you
have any difficulty getting the tray to sit flush, double-check to ensure no extraneous wires are interfering
with the tray’s positioning. There should not be any space in between the two components, as shown in
Figure 6.3.4.B, following.

Figure 6.3.4.B: Battery Tray Flush Alignment

4. Finally, replace the seven battery tray screws in their original positions as shown in Figure 6.3.2.A. This
completes the battery tray replacement.

6.3.4.1 GPS Cover Replacement

Replace the GPS Cover by sliding the cover straight back until it clicks into place, as shown following.

Figure 6.3.4.1.A: GPS Cover Replacement

54
6.4 Solo Mainboard
The mainboard connects all electronic components of Solo. The following chapter walks you through a complete
mainboard replacement. Along the way we will also address the replacement of other components such as Solo’s
antenna cables, the Pixhawk, the Solo Link, the HDMI cord, and the motor control wires.

Replaceable Mainboard Parts

Part Number

Solo Mainboard
#MB11A
(mainboard with power connector, veritcal vente, 3DR Bus)

Solo Mainboard Assembly


#MA11A
(mainboard with Solo Link, Pixhawk, and vertical vente)

Solo Pixhawk 2 #PH11A

Solo Link (iM6 Board) #SL11A

Figure 6.4.A: Replaceable Mainboard Parts

The following sections make a few distinctions between the top and bottom of the Solo Mainboard. Figure 6.4.B,
following, shows the top side of the mainboard. This is where you can access the GPS, compass, motor control,
and motor power cables simply by removing the battery tray.

Mainboard Top View


Motor Control Lead #03

Motor Control Lead #02


GPS Cable

Motor Control Lead #01

Compass Cable
Motor Control Lead #04 3DR Bus

Figure 6.4.B: Mainboard Components (Top)

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Mainboard Bottom View

Pixhawk 2
Solo Link Board (PN #PH11A)
(PN #PH11A)

HDMI Cable

Figure 6.4.C: Mainboard Components (Bottom)

For orientation purposes, this section also uses the bottom of the mainboard as a reference. The bottom of the
mainboard holds two important components: the Pixhawk 2 and the Solo Link board. Both of these are replaceable.

6.4.1 Mainboard Removal


To access the mainboard, first remove the GPS Cover (Section 6.3.1) and the battery tray (Section 6.3.2). If you plan
to remove the Solo Mainboard completely, for replacement or installation in a new shell, be sure to disconnect the
motor pods (Section 6.2). The Solo Mainboard is held in place by a silver screw. Connected to it are multiple wire
sets running through each leg, and a delicate ribbon cable connected to the the 3DR Bus (fastened to the shell).

To remove the mainboard:


1. Remove the single silver screw securing the mainboard to the frame.

Remove

Figure 6.4.1.A: Mainboard Silver Screw Removal

56
2. Disconnect the compass connector from the mainboard as shown following.

Figure 6.4.1.B: Compass Connector Removal

3. If you plan to remove the entire mainboard, confirm that you have already removed the motor pods (Section
6.2.1) and extracted the respective wires and cables from each leg. To remove the mainboard, begin by
gently lifting up on the front of the mainboard with your left index finger where a semicircle is cut out.

Figure 6.4.1.C: Mainboard Lift

4. Slide the board toward the front to clear the rear frame.

Figure 6.4.1.D: Mainboard Slide

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5. Gently lift the board up from the side with the battery connector, being careful not to pinch any wires in
the process (specifically, the motor wires from legs #02 and #03). Remember, try not to lift the mainboard
more than an inch above the shell as it is still attached via the 3DR Bus’s ribbon cable, which is extremely
delicate.

Figure 6.4.1.E: Mainboard Loosening

The ribbon cable attaching the Solo Mainboard to the 3DR Bus is
extremely delicate. Use extreme care when handling these components.

6.4.1.1 Antenna Lead Detachment from the Solo Link Board

Solo has two antenna cables, one in leg #01 and one in leg #02. Each runs through its respective leg and into the
main electronics bay, where it connects to the Solo Link board. To ensure Solo’s communication range, it is very
important that these cables be in good condition and properly attached.

The antenna leads use press-fit (button-like) connectors to fasten to the Solo Link board, and Super-X Glue is used
to prevent these connections from coming loose. To remove the antenna leads, use an X-Acto knife or sharp edge
to remove the glue droplets. To completely remove the mainboard or to replace a damaged antenna lead, follow the
steps below.

Figure 6.4.1.1.A: Access to Antenna Leads

1. Using the access to the antenna leads shown in the preceding figure, use a sharp edge to gently cut and
separate both droplets of glue on each antenna connection. If there is also a droplet of glue holding the
leftmost wire in place, separate this as well.

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Figure 6.4.1.1.B: Antenna Lead Locations

2. With the glue out of the way, the only thing holding down each antenna lead is a button-like fastener called a
press-fit. Using a small screwdriver, gently pry the head of the antenna cable upward to remove the antenna
leads.

6.4.1.2 3DR Bus Removal

3. Inside Solo, the 3DR Bus (accessory connector module) is secured to the frame with two silver screws. It
is also attached to the mainboard with a delicate ribbon cable. Carefully lift up the mainboard to reveal the
3DR Bus. Use a great deal of caution here, as the accessory connector module is extremely delicate and
can break easily if not handled carefully.

Figure 6.4.1.2.A: 3DR Bus Location

4. Gently maneuver a Phillips screwdriver around the cable to reach the 3DR Bus installation and remove both
screws.

Figure 6.4.1.2.B: 3DR Bus Screw Locations

5. With both screws removed, lift the accessory module out of its socket. Be sure to lift from the 3DR Bus
itself. If you lift using the mainboard, there is a good chance the connecting ribbon cable will break.

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6.4.2 Accessory Maintenance
6.4.2.1 Pixhawk Replacement

To remove the Pixhawk from the mainboard, remove the four silver screws that secure Pixhawk to the board, then
lift the cube away from the board on the opposite side.

Remove
4 screws

Figure 6.4.2.1.A: Pixhawk Screw Removal

Figure 6.4.2.1.B: Separation of Pixhawk from Mainboard

When reconnecting the Pixhawk 2, place the cube securely onto the Pixhawk 2 connector on the mainboard before
securing the four screws (apply Loctite) from the other side of the board.

Installed Pixhawk

Figure 6.4.2.1.C: Installed Pixhawk

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6.4.2.2 Solo Link

The Solo Link board is connected to the mainboard by two antenna cables, an HDMI cable, and three screws. To
remove the Solo Link:
1. Confirm that you have already removed the antenna cables, as described in Section 6.4.1.1.
2. Locate the zip tie that secures the HDMI cable to the mainboard, and remove the tie with a wire cutter.

Figure 6.4.2.2.A: HDMI Zip Tie Removal

3. Unplug the HDMI cable from the Solo Link port as shown in Figure 6.4.2.2.B, following.

Figure 6.4.2.2.B: HDMI Removal from Solo Link

4. With the cables removed from the Solo Link, complete the detachment by removing the three screws that
secure Solo Link to the mainboard, as shown in Figure 6.4.2.2.C, following. You can now lift off the Solo Link
with minimal effort.

Remove

Figure 6.4.2.2.C: Solo Link Removal from Mainboard

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5. To replace the Solo Link, line up the three sets of pins with their corresponding green housings, and push
down slowly and gently until they drop in flush with the standoffs.

Figure 6.4.2.2.D: Solo Link to Mainboard Attachment

6. With the Solo Link seated on the mainboard, screw the three metal screws (apply Loctite) back through the
plastic standoffs into the mainboard. Be careful to not overtighten.
7. Plug the HDMI cable back into the Solo Link’s HDMI port and replace the zip tie you removed earlier.

Insert and Tighten

Replace HDMI

Figure 6.4.2.2.E: Solo Link to Mainboard Tightening

6.4.3 Mainboard Reassembly


To assemble Solo’s interior electronics, the following instructions assume you have already connected the Pixhawk
and Solo Link boards to the Mainboard as described in Section 6.4.2, preceding.

6.4.3.1 HDMI Cable Replacement

1. Before replacing the mainboard, feed the HDMI cable back through the bottom-shell opening.

Figure 6.4.3.1.A: HDMI Feed

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6.4.3.2 Installing the 3DR Bus

If you removed the mainboard completely, then you need to reinstall the 3DR Bus:
2. Locate the 3DR Bus socket on the inside-bottom edge of the Solo Shell, as shown in Figure 6.4.3.2.A,
following.
3. Align the Bus over the socket and push downward gently. Be careful with the attached ribbon cable, as it is
very delicate.
4. With the Bus correctly positioned, insert the two silver screws into the Bus’s standoffs and tighten.

3DR Bus Socket Screw Placement




Figure 6.4.3.2.A: 3DR Bus Installation

6.4.3.3 Antenna Lead Reattachment to Solo Link

5. To reconnect the antenna leads to the Solo Link board, first route each antenna lead back to its proper
connector, connect the press-fit fasteners, and fortify each connection with a small dab of Super-X Glue.

Figure 6.4.3.3.A: Loose Antenna Leads

6. Before connecting the antenna leads back onto the Solo Link, first make sure the Solo Mainboard is already
connected to the Solo Shell via the 3DR Bus (see Section 6.4.3.2).

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7. Rest the mainboard partially inside the shell as shown in Figure 6.4.3.3.B, following.

Figure 6.4.3.3.B: Mainboard Configuration for Antenna Lead Access

8. Connect Antenna Lead #2 by guiding it directly over the Solo Link antenna connector closest to leg #02.
As this process is precise, use a pair of needle-nose pliers. You can view the exact location of the targeted
brass connector by looking through the circular opening in the mainboard, indicated in Figure 6.4.3.3.C.

Leg #02

Figure 6.4.3.3.C: Right Antenna Overhead Connector

9. Feed Antenna Lead #2 behind the plastic standoff, between the ceiling of the mainboard and the floor of the
Solo Link. Guide the lead so that it is directly overhead and in line with the brass antenna connector on the
Solo Link board, then use a screwdriver to apply pressure to the press fit to snap the connection into place.
Apply a very small dab of Super-X Glue to the connection to help reinforce the lead.

Figure 6.4.3.3.D: Press-Fit Right Antenna

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Figure 6.4.3.3.E: Right Antenna Connected

10. Tape Antenna Cable #2 to the mainboard using a few strips of Kapton tape, as shown in Figure 6.4.3.3.F,
following. It is necessary to tape the antenna lead to prevent the cable from getting pinched and bent by
surrounding shell components.

Figure 6.4.3.3.F: Antenna Lead #2 Tape

11. With Antenna Lead #2 now in place, connect the Antenna Lead #1 to the Solo Link board. Antenna Lead #1
has a longer cable due to the fact it has to travel from the far-diagonal corner back to the Solo Link. From
Leg #01’s far corner, take Antenna Lead #1 and feed it behind and underneath the Solo Mainboard until you
come across the Solo Link component. Then take the antenna lead and feed it along the far-right edge of
the Solo Link board where a natural crevice is formed directly adjacent to the plastic standoff.

Figure 6.4.3.3.G: Antenna Lead #1 Insertion

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12. Figure 6.4.3.3.H, following, shows the path Antenna Lead #1 needs to follow, from the back side of the
Solo Link board to its connection point at the front. This cable needs to be (1) routed between the pins and
the board, (2) glued where it bends towards the connector with a dab of Super-X Glue, and (3) glued at the
connector with another dab of Super-X Glue once the press-fit is in place.

Figure 6.4.3.3.H: Antenna Lead #1 Routing

13. With Antenna Lead #1 routed through the Solo Link component, attach the antenna lead via the press-fit,
as with Antenna Lead #2. Guide the antenna lead directly above the remaining brass connector, and a
screwdriver to push the press-fit into place. Use the opening called out in Figure 6.4.3.3.I as the point of
entry for the screwdriver.

14. Apply a very small dab of Super X Glue to the antenna lead to reinforce the connection. Also apply a
small dab to the antenna cable where it bends around the WiFi board (example application seen in Figure
6.4.3.3.H, preceding).

Leg #02

Figure 6.4.3.3.I: Antenna Overhead Opening for Long Lead

15. To avoid Antenna Lead #1 from being pinched and damaged by surrounding components, tape the lead to
the side of the Solo shell, as shown in Figure 6.4.3.3.J, following.

Figure 6.4.3.3.J: Antenna Lead One Taped

66
6.4.3.4 Compass Lead

16. Make sure the Compass Lead is connected to the Mainboard.

Figure 6.4.3.4.A: Compass Lead Connection

6.4.3.5 Mainboard Replacement

17. With the 3DR Bus installed, and the HDMI cord routed back outside the Solo shell, replace the Solo
Mainboard in its original location inside the shell. The 3DR Bus connection pulls the mainboard down
towards it, so the orientation of the mainboard is already correct. Gently slide the mainboard toward the
opposite side, where the 3DR Bus sits, and the other end will then have enough room to drop into the shell
cavity.

Figure 6.4.3.5.A: Mainboard Replacement

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6.4.3.6 Motor Wire Routing

18. The next part of the mainboard assembly requires guiding the motor/power cables through each of Solo’s
arms and then retrieving them from the motor-pod cavity. Feed each cable up its arms start by guiding it into
the arm’s interior opening, as shown in Figure 6.4.3.6.A.

Motor Control Cables Motor Power Cables

Figure 6.4.3.6.A: Motor Cables

19. Use tweezers or needle-nose pliers to retrieve each cable end, pulling it up and through the rest of the way.

Figure 6.4.3.6.B: Cable Retrieval Technique

Each cable should extend out of its arm by about an inch. This provides enough slack to connect to the motor
pods later.

Figure 6.4.3.6.C: Successful Cable Retrieval

68
20. Once you have fed the motor-control and motor-power wires through each of the four arms, make sure that
the wires are not tangled or caught between the mainboard and the shell. If this happens, the upcoming
battery-tray alignment will be difficult.

Figure 6.4.3.6.D: Mainboard Wire Inspection

6.4.3.7 Mainboard Alignment

The mainboard should now be seated relatively close to its original position, loosely anchored by the 3DR Bus and
the motor wires in each arm. This looseness is useful because the mainboard requires further alignment in a couple
of places before being fastened to the shell.

21. In the rear-center of the mainboard, find the small alignment notch. Fit this notch into place against the
plastic post that extrudes from the Solo Shell, as shown in Figure 6.4.3.7.A, following.

Figure 6.4.3.7.A: Mainboard Alignment Notch

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22. Also, at the other end of the mainboard, an alignment hole needs to drop onto an alignment pin. The hole
is in front of the battery power connector. To find the alignment pin, try shifting the board left and right by
small distances.

Figure 6.4.3.7.B: Mainboard Underpinning Alignment

With the mainboard seated back in the Solo shell, and all the cables routed back to their original positions, complete
the mainboard replacement by replacing the silver screw and the three black screws you removed earlier. Be sure to
apply Loctite to all four screws.

Replace

Figure 6.4.3.7.C: Mainboard Screw Replacement

70
7 Procedures
7.1 Updates
Before your first flight, use the app to perform the required first-flight update. The Controller will prompt you for the
update with the preflight update alert. Ensure that both the Controller and Solo are powered, the Controller has at
least 50% battery remaining, and the App is connected to Solo WiFi. The entire update process can take up to 10
ARTOO UPDATE SCREEN FEEDBACK V10C
minutes.
Update Requirement Screen

preflight update
Required before first flight!
Use 3DR Solo App to update

Controller update in progress screen


Is displayed after user initiates update in app.
Figure 7.1.A: Controller Preflight Update Prompt Persists until controller update is successful.

1. To start the update, open the Settings section of the app, and choose Updates.
Controller updating Update Timeout
Update will take about 5 minutes If update does not c
“update-unsuccessf
Please ensure charger is connected
Controller may go dark while updating
Update failure
If update fails, displa
screen

Update complete feedback.


Tells the user that controller update was successful.

HAPTIC: Three 20 millisecond pulses,


to communicate update completion.

A-Press required to dimiss (same as current implementation)

Controller updated
Figure Please
7.1.B:reconnect
App - toSoftware
Sololink wifiUpdate

Press to continue
2. Before starting the update, you’ll need to connect your device to the Internet and download the update.
Select Download Update to start the process, then exit the app and connect to the Internet.
Waiting for Solo
Persists until Solo reconnects

or

Artoo auto-shutdown

waiting for Solo

Press when LEDs are green

Update complete (Connects to matching version Solo) Update unsuccessful (A

12
FLY
Figure 7.1.C: App - Download Update

While the update is downloading, the app shows the following: Hold FLY to start motors

update
Please use
the
Cable Cam Orbit

Returns user to hold-Fly-button screen Prompt stays on screen u

Green Solo LEDs (showing update complete) change to Post Unlock Behavior
standard red and white when this screen is displayed After system is unlocked,
versions that were last su
(Even if they have failed i

Figure 7.1.D: App - Update Download in Progress

71
3. When the download is complete, the app prompts you to reconnect to Solo Wi-Fi in your device’s Wi-Fi
settings.

Figure 7.1.E: App - Reconnect to Solo Wi-Fi

4. When the app detects an active connection with the Controller, it prompts you to begin the update. (Solo
and the Controller must be powered on to connect to Solo Wi-Fi.) Select Begin to start the update.

ARTOO UPDATE SCREEN FEEDBACK V10C

Update Requirement Screen

Figure 7.1.F: App - Start Update


preflight update
Required before first flight!
5. While the update is in progress, the Controller shows
Use 3DR the
Solo App to “Controller updating” screen. The Controller
update

completes a full restart as part of the update process, which can take up to five minutes.
Controller update in progress screen
Is displayed after user initiates update in app.
Persists until controller update is successful.

Controller updating Update Timeout


Update will take about 5 minutes If update does not comple
“update-unsuccessful” scr
Please ensure charger is connected
Controller may go dark while updating
Update failure
If update fails, display “upd
screen

Update complete feedback.


Figure 7.1.G: Controller - Updating Tells the user that controller update was successful.

HAPTIC: Three 20 millisecond pulses,


to communicate update completion.

A-Press required to dimiss (same as current implementation)

6. Because the Controller must restart as part of the update process, your device will lose its connection to
Controller
Solo Wi-Fi. When you see the following screen, updated
select Next to continue.
Please reconnect to Sololink wifi

Press to continue

Waiting for Solo


Persists until Solo reconnects

or

Artoo auto-shutdown

waiting for Solo


Upd
If up
Upd
Press when LEDs are green

Figure 7.1.H: App - Update Disconnection Confirmation Update complete (Connects to matching version Solo) Update unsuccessful (Artoo a

12
FLY

Hold FLY to start motors

update un
72Please use 3DR
the upd
Cable Cam Orbit

Returns user to hold-Fly-button screen Prompt stays on screen until up


Use 3DR Solo App to update
Update Requirement Screen

Controller update in progress screen


Is displayed after user initiates update in app.
Persists until controller update is successful.

preflight update
Required before first flight!

Controller that updating


Use 3DR Solo App to update
7. The Controller restarts and displays a green checkmark to indicate the Controller was updated
successfully. When you see the green checkmark on the Controller, reconnect
Update will take about 5 minutes
Please ensure charger is connected
to Solo Wi-Fi in the app and
press A on the Controller to continue the update. Controller may go dark while updating
Controller update in progress screen
Is displayed after user initiates update in app.
Persists until controller update is successful.

Update complete feedback.


Tells the user that controller update was successful.

HAPTIC: Three 20 millisecond pulses,


to communicate update completion.
Controller updating A-Press required to dimiss (same as current implementation)
Update Timeout
Update will take about 5 minutes If update does not complete
“update-unsuccessful” screen
Please ensure charger is connected
Controller may go dark while updating Controller updated
Please reconnect to Sololink wifi Update failure
If update fails, display “update
screen
Press to continue
Update complete feedback.
Tells the user that controller update was successful.

HAPTIC: Three 20 millisecond pulses,


to communicate update completion. Waiting for Solo
Figure 7.1.I: Controller Update Complete Displays Persists until Solo reconnects
A-Press required to dimiss (same as current implementation)
or

Controller updated Artoo auto-shutdown

Please reconnect to Sololink wifi


After pressing A, Solo restarts to complete the update. While Solo restarts, the Controller displays “waiting
waiting for Solo
for Solo”. Press to continue

Press when Waiting


LEDs forareSolo
green
Persists until Solo reconnects

or
Update complete (Connects to matching version Solo)
Artoo auto-shutdown
12
FLY

waiting for Solo


Hold FLY to start motors Update
If upda
Update
Press when LEDs are green

Figure 7.1.J: Controller - Waiting for Solo Update complete (Connects to matching version Solo)
Cable Cam Update unsuccessful (Artoo and
Orbit
12
FLY
Returns user to hold-Fly-button screen

Green Solo LEDs (showing update complete) change to

8. When the update is complete, Solo’s LEDs turn green, the Controller returns to the standard takeoff screen,
standard red and white when this screen is displayed

Hold FLY to start motors


and the app shows that the software is up to date. After displaying green, Solo’s LEDs return to the standard
white-and-red pattern. If you do not see white-and-red LEDs a few minutes after the update completes,
update uns
Please use 3DR S
restart Solo. Cable Cam Orbit
the update

Returns user to hold-Fly-button screen Prompt stays on screen until upda

Green Solo LEDs (showing update complete) change to Post Unlock Behavior
standard red and white when this screen is displayed After system is unlocked, user shou
versions that were last successfully
(Even if they have failed in their mo

Figure 7.1.K: App - Update Success

73
7.2 Pairing the Controller
1. Turn off the Solo and the Controller that you want to pair, along with any other Solos and Controllers nearby.
2. Power on the Solo and Controller that you want to pair.
3. Wait 30 seconds for Solo and the Controller to fully boot up.
4. Identify the Pair button underneath Solo. It’s a small button inside the hole labeled Pair. You’ll need to use a
paperclip, a small screwdriver, or another similar tool to push it.

Figure 7.2.A: Pair Button

5. Press the Pair button underneath Solo and hold for one second.
6. When the Controller detects Solo, it prompts you to accept the pairing request as seen in the screen below.
(If the Controller does not detect Solo after thirty seconds, try pressing the Pair button underneath Solo
again and repeat as needed.)

Figure 7.2.B: Detected Solo

7. Press A, then B and hold both buttons down; when the Controller vibrates, you can let go. Within 20
seconds, the Controller shows “Solo Paired.”

Figure 7.2.C: Solo Paired

74
7.3 Factory Reset
Performing a factory reset restores Solo and the controller to their states prior to the first-flight update. Use a factory
reset if you forget your Solo Wi-Fi password or need to restore Solo’s factory settings.

Contact customer support before performing a Factory Reset. This


procedure can cause irreparable damage to Solo.

Part 1: Reset the Vehicle

As part of the reset procedure, Solo is unpaired from the Controller.


1. Start by powering off Solo.
2. Then use a paper clip or similar tool to press and hold Solo’s Pair button while powering on Solo. (Make sure
you feel the Pair button click down underneath the paper clip to verify you have properly activated the Pair
button.) Continue holding the Pair button for at least 15 seconds.

Figure 7.3.A: Pair Button

3. Below the Accessory Port and adjacent to the Pair button is small orange LED Pair indicator light. Once this
light starts flashing rapidly, strobing about five times per second, release the Pair button.

Figure 7.3.B: Strobing Pairing Light

75
Part 2: Reset the Controller

4. Start with the Controller powered off. Hold the Power and Fly buttons simultaneously until you see the
controller-updating display. The Controller restarts, taking up to five minutes, after which the screen turns off
for one minute.

Figure 7.3.C: Controller Reset

When the Controller reset is complete, it displays one of these two completion screens:

Figure 7.3.D: Controller Update

As the vehicle reset nears completion, you will see the lights under the arms change between many different
colors, followed by a sequence of beeps. The reset is complete once the lights stop changing colors. Upon
completion, the lights freeze on their current colors, so they could all be the same color or different colors.

Part 3: Reboot Solo and the Controller

5. While rebooting, Solo should emit its regular startup tones. The lights underneath Solo’s arms should also
light up green and change to white in the front and red in the back. If this does not happen, then reboot Solo
again. If the lights change colors now, then the vehicle is still resetting. Allow Solo to finish resetting (the
lights stop changing color), then reboot Solo again.

After rebooting the Controller, it displays either the “preflight update” or the “waiting for Solo” screen.

Figure 7.3.E: Update and Waiting screens

76
Step 4: Pair Solo and the Controller

See section 7.2 for instructions for pairing Solo and the Controller.

Step 5: Update your system

See section 7.1 for instructions for updating your system. The Factory Reset procedure is now complete.

77
8 Appendix

8.1 Specifications and Operating Parameters


Solo is a quad-rotor aerial vehicle powered by the 3DR Pixhawk 2 autopilot system and APM:Copter 3.3 flight
control software. Solo communicates with the Controller and Solo app over the 3DR Link secure wireless
connection.

Autopilot: 3DR Pixhawk 2


Flight code: APM:Copter 3.3
Control: 3DR Solo Controller
Wireless communication: 3DR Link 1.0
Frequency: 2.4 GHz

Height: 10.2 in.


Motor-to-motor dimension: 18.1 in.
Propulsion: 880 kV motors, two clockwise rotating motors and
two counterclockwise rotating motors
Propeller: 10 in. x 4.5 in.
Weight with battery: 3.3 lbs.
Controller battery life: 6 hours
Controller battery: Li-ion 2600 mAh 7.2 Vdc (5200 mAh for extended battery)
Power: Electric (rechargeable lithium polymer battery)
Battery: Lithium polymer, 5200 mAh, 14.8 Vdc
Battery weight: 1 lb.
Estimated flight time: 25 minutes*

Range: 2,500 ft. from launch point**


Payload capacity: 1.1 lbs.

Cruise speed: 5.7 mph (2.5 m/s)


Maximum speed: 55 mph (25.5 m/s)
Maximum climb rate: 11 mph (5.0 m/s)
Maximum descent rate: 5.5 mph (2.5 m/s)
Headwind limitation: 17 mph (7.7 m/s)
Crosswind limitation: 17 mph (7.7 m/s)

Camera: Streaming video compatible with GoPro® HERO 3, 3+ or 4


Full compatibility with GoPro® HERO 3+ or 4
Solo app compatibility: iOS 8.0 or later / Android 4.1.2 or later

Operating temperature: 32° F - 113° F (0° C - 45° C)


Operating relative humidity: 0-85% RH

*Flight time varies with payload, wind conditions, elevation, temperature, humidity, flying style,
and pilot skill. Listed flight time applies to elevations less than 2,000 ft above sea level.

**Range varies with location, antenna orientation, background noise and multi-path.

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8.2 Warranty
3D Robotics warrants to the original retail purchaser of Solo (the “Product”) that at the time of purchase that this
product is free from material defect in materials and workmanship. Should this Product fail during normal consumer
usage and conditions due to defective material or workmanship within one year from the date of purchase, or such
longer period as is required by applicable law (“Warranty Period”), such defect(s) will be
repaired or replaced at 3D Robotics’ option, without charge for parts or labor directly related to the defect(s). The
complete terms of the limited warranty applicable to Solo can be found at 3dr.com/terms.

This Warranty extends only to consumers who purchase the product from a 3D Robotics authorized reseller and is
not transferable or assignable. This Warranty does not apply to: (1) Product subjected to abnormal use
or conditions, accident (including without limitation, collision, crash or fire), alteration, or improper repair; (2)
damage from exposure to moisture or extreme environmental conditions; (3) damage from use with any
accessory, software or other product not expressly authorized by 3D Robotics; (4) damage from external causes
such as dirt, sand, battery leakage, blown fuse, or improper usage of any electrical source; (5) commercial use; or (6)
use in violation of law or ordinances in effect in the jurisdiction in which the Product is used.

3D Robotics assumes no liability for any accident, injury, death, loss, or other claim related to or resulting from
the use of this product. 3D Robotics makes no other warranties for Solo, and makes no warranties whatsoever
for service, software, maintenance or support for non-3D Robotics branded products. Such products, service,
software, maintenance or support is provided by 3D Robotics “As Is” and any third-party warranties, products,
software, services, maintenance or support are provided by the original manufacturer or supplier, not by 3D
Robotics.

Software is subject to the separate software license agreement accompanying or made available to you in
connection with the software. A portion of the software contains or consists of open-source software, which you
may use under the terms and conditions of the specific license under which the open-source software is distributed.
You agree that you will be bound by any and all such license agreements, and that your usage of this product
indicates your acceptance of those agreements. Title to software remains with the applicable licensor(s). In no event
will 3D Robotics be liable to you for damages, including any general, special, incidental or consequential damages
arising out of the use or inability to use the software.

THE EXTENT OF 3D ROBOTICS’ LIABILITY UNDER THIS WARRANTY IS LIMITED TO THE REPAIR OR
REPLACEMENT PROVIDED ABOVE AND, IN NO EVENT, SHALL ITS LIABILITY EXCEED THE PURCHASE PRICE
PAID BY PURCHASER FOR THE PRODUCT.

8.3 Regulatory Compliance


8.3.1 U.S. - FCC (Federal Communication Commission)

3DR Solo FCC ID: 2ADYD-S111A


3DR Solo Controller FCC ID: 2ADYD-AT11A

Changes or modifications not expressly approved by 3D Robotics could void the user’s authority to operate the
equipment.

Note: This equipment has been tested and found to comply with the limits for a Class B digital device, pursuant to
part 15 of the FCC Rules. These limits are designed to provide reasonable protection against harmful interference in
a residential installation. This equipment generates, uses and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if not installed
and used in accordance with the instructions, may cause harmful interference to radio communications. However,
there is no guarantee that interference will not occur in a particular installation. If this equipment does cause harmful
interference to radio or television reception, which can be determined by turning the equipment off and on, the user
is encouraged to try to correct the interference by one or more of the following measures:
—Reorient or relocate the receiving antenna.
—Increase the separation between the equipment and receiver.
—Connect the equipment into an outlet on a circuit different from that to which the receiver is connected.
—Consult the dealer or an experienced radio/TV technician for help.

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8.3.2 Canada - Industry Canada

3DR Solo IC ID: 12768A-S114A


3DR Solo Controller IC ID: 12768A-AT14A

This device complies with Industry Canada licence-exempt RSS standard(s). Operation is subject to the following
two conditions: (1) this device may not cause interference, and (2) this device must accept any interference,
including interference that may cause undesired operation of the device.

Le présent appareil est conforme aux CNR d’Industrie Canada applicables aux appareils radio exempts de licence.
L’exploitation est autorisée aux deux conditions suivantes : (1) l’appareil ne doit pas produire de brouillage, et (2)
l’utilisateur de l’appareil doit accepter tout brouillage radioélectrique subi, même si le brouillage est susceptible d’en
compromettre le fonctionnement.

8.4 Sensor Data Sheets


8.4.1 Pixhawk Flight Management Unit:

- InvenSense MPU6000 integrated accelerometer/gyroscope


http://www.invensense.com/mems/gyro/mpu6050.html

- Honeywell HMC 5983 temperature compensated magnetometer


http://www51.honeywell.com/aero/common/documents/myaerospacecatalog-documents/Defense_Brochures-
documents/HMC5983_3_Axis_Compass_IC.pdf

- Measurement Specialties MS5611 Barometer


http://www.meas-spec.com/product/pressure/MS5611-01BA03.aspx

8.4.2 Pixhawk Stabilized Internal Measurement Unit:

- InvenSense MPU6000 integrated accelerometer/gyroscope


http://www.invensense.com/mems/gyro/mpu6050.html

- Measurement Specialties MS5611 Barometer


http://www.meas-spec.com/product/pressure/MS5611-01BA03.aspx

- STMicroelectronics LSM303D integrated accelerometer/magnetometer


http://www.st.com/web/catalog/sense_power/FM89/SC1449/PF253884

- STMicroelectronics L3GD20 gyroscope


http://www.st.com/web/catalog/sense_power/FM89/SC1288/PF252443?sc=internet/analog/product/252443.jsp

8.4.3 3DR GPS Module:

- u-blox NEO-7N
http://www.u-blox.com/en/gps-modules/pvt-modules/neo-7.html

-Taoglas GPS Patch Antenna, 1575MHz


http://www.taoglas.com/images/product_images/original_images/GP.1575.25.4.A.02%20GPS%20Patch%20
Antenna%201575MHz%20280110.pdf

8.4.4 3DR Compass Module:

- Honeywell HMC 5983 temperature compensated magnetometer


http://www51.honeywell.com/aero/common/documents/myaerospacecatalog-documents/Defense_Brochures-
documents/HMC5983_3_Axis_Compass_IC.pdf

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8.5 Part Numbers

Part Number

Solo Clockwise Motor Pod #CW11A

Solo Clockwise Motor Pod (UK) #CW12A

Solo Clockwise Motor Pod (Australia) #CW13A

Solo Clockwise Motor Pod (France) #CW15A

Solo Clockwise Motor Pod (UAE) #CW17A

Solo Counterclockwise Motor Pod #AW11A

Solo Counterclockwise Motor Pod (UK) #AW12A

Solo Counterclockwise Motor Pod (Australia) #AW13A

Solo Counterclockwise Motor Pod (France) #AW15A

Solo Counterclockwise Motor Pod (UAE) #AW17A

Solo Replacement Leg with Compass #LC11A

Solo Replacement Leg Set #LG11A

Solo Replacement Shell #SC11A

Solo Fixed Camera Mount Attachment Plate #GF11A

Solo Mainboard #MB11A

Solo Mainboard Assembly #MA11A

Solo Pixhawk 2 #PH11A

Solo Link (i.MX6 Board) #SL11A

Solo GPS #GP11A

Solo LED Cover #LE11A

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