FPV Pilot’s Information to 3D Printing: Get Began and Create Customized Drone Components


3D printing has opened up an entire new world of potentialities for FPV drone fans, permitting them to experiment, customise, and create like by no means earlier than. On this tutorial, we are going to discover the fundamentals of 3D printing, the tools wanted, and methods to get began with creating your individual customized elements and equipment to your drone.

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The Advantages of 3D Printing

3D printing has revolutionized the best way we create and innovate in numerous industries, and the world of FPV drone flying is not any exception. With the flexibility to print customized elements and equipment at residence, 3D printing has opened up an entire new world of potentialities for drone fans, from creating distinctive frames elements to customized mounts and fast prototypes.

One of many largest advantages of 3D printing for FPV drone fans is the flexibility to shortly and simply change damaged elements or make modifications to current designs. With 3D printing, you possibly can create elements that aren’t available or which might be too costly to buy, permitting you to experiment and customise your drone in ways in which had been as soon as unimaginable.

Moreover, 3D printing permits for better creativity and customization. You’ll be able to create distinctive designs and shapes that aren’t attainable with conventional manufacturing strategies, and even print in a wide range of supplies to fit your wants.

Examples of 3D Printed Drone Components

GoPro Mount – it holds the digicam in place whereas present some safety in crashes.

Video transmitter antenna holders – they holds the antenna in an optimum place whereas present bodily safety.

Walksnail Avatar Digital Hd Fpv System Air Unit Vtx Antenna Mount 3d Print Tpu Frame

FPV Digital camera mounts – these maintain the digicam in place on the drone and could be adjusted for various angles and positions.

Arm guards – protects the carbon fibre of the arms in crashes.

How To Build Fpv Drone 2023 Dji 3d Printed Parts Camera Capacitor Mount

Customized made radio grips.

Numerous customized 3D printed elements for mounted wing.

FPV Goggles display protector printed in TPU.

Finest 3D Printers

Two of my favorite 3D printers are the Ender 3 and the Bambu sequence. They excel at printing FPV drone elements utilizing widespread TPU, PETG and PLA filaments. These printers are fairly completely different from each other, and the perfect one for you is determined by your particular wants. Let’s delve into their professionals and cons that will help you make an knowledgeable determination.

Purchase Ender 3 V3 SE right here:

Purchase Bambu Printers right here:

Bambu is a brand new model in 3D printer world. Their printers include leading edge options and are simple to make use of, it’s like a automotive with full self driving functionality—you simply punch within the vacation spot and benefit from the experience. In distinction, the great previous Ender is extra like a guide automotive—it’s cheaper and you’ve got extra management, nevertheless it requires extra effort and data to get it operating the best way you need.

Should you’re tight on finances, the Ender 3 will serve you nicely. There are many TPU profiles and mods obtainable to get you began. It’s like paying with time as a substitute of cash. But, in case your finances permits, the comfort and high quality of Bambu are well worth the funding.

Ender 3 V3 SE

Creality Ender 3 V3 Se 3d Printer

Should you actually need the most affordable and value having 3D printer, contemplate the Ender 3 V3 SE. It’s a brand new model of the unique Ender 3, it mounted many points that earlier fashions have. It’s priced beneath $200, comes with direct drive and auto-leveling. It’s a big step up from its predecessors and could possibly be a very good match for FPV printing with out the necessity for heavy modifications.

Purchase Ender 3 V3 SE right here:

Bambu Lab A1 Mini

Bambu Lab A1 Mini 3d Printer

Proper now in 2024, the perfect starter 3D printer is the Bambu A1 for my part, priced beneath $300. Regardless of its affordability, it retains many superior options typical of Bambu Lab’s higher-end fashions, together with high-speed printing, a direct drive extruder, and capabilities for multicolor printing, and it received’t pressure you to tinker and improve straight out of the field. It’s barely dearer than the Ender 3, nevertheless it runs out of the field and simply simpler to get began with out modifications.

The printer is designed with a bed-slinger and cantilever construction, supporting numerous filament sorts like PLA, PETG, TPU, and PVA straight out of the field. It gives a construct quantity of 180 x 180 x 180 mm and consists of quality-of-life options similar to auto mattress leveling, auto calibration, and a built-in digicam for monitoring prints, although the digicam high quality is notably low.

Setup is simple, requiring minimal meeting, and the printer is provided with Wi-Fi for straightforward management through app or software program. Whereas there are some compatibility points with third-party filament spools for multicolor printing, the general efficiency, ease of use, and print high quality make the A1 Mini an distinctive worth for these new to 3D printing or in search of a dependable, budget-friendly printer. The one motive one would nonetheless purchase an Ender 3 would most likely as a result of it’s a very good platform for tinkering and modifying. Nonetheless as a newbie you must look a unique manner.

Purchase Bambu Printers right here:

Creality, the maker of Ender, has been round for the longest time, and appears to have taken a backseat in innovation. Alternatively, Bambu has been always releasing printers for various viewers, with completely different worth vary and options. For instance, for these on a finances, the Bambu A1 Mini is value a glance. Ender 3 would possibly nonetheless be the tinkerer’s alternative, however for rookies, I’d steer in direction of one thing much less demanding.

Check out the Bambu Labs P1S – certain, it’s greater than you ever want for printing FPV drone elements, however the print high quality and user-friendliness are simple. The dearer Bambu X1C is nothing wanting a dream. Should you can afford it, a Bambu printer can ship unimaginable outcomes with much less fiddling round.

3D Print?

  1. Obtain a design you need to print (the design file is known as STL file).
  2. Import the design right into a slicing software to arrange it for 3D printing.
    1. Customise the printing parameters primarily based on the kind of filament you might be utilizing.
    2. Export the directions (G-Code) onto an SD card and insert it into the 3D printer.
  3. Energy on the printer, choose the G-Code file, and press begin.

Software program Requirement

Slicing Software program

Slicing software program, or “slicer”, is crucial for 3D printing; it takes your 3D design (in STL file format) and interprets it into “G-Code.” Basically, it “slices” the 3D mannequin into layers and creates a toolpath to your 3D printer to comply with.

This software program additionally permits you to customise print settings similar to layer peak, print pace, and infill density. Cura is among the hottest slicing software program choices, and it’s free.

Obtain Cura right here: https://ultimaker.com/software program/ultimaker-cura/

3D Modelling Software program

If yow will discover a design file on-line for the half you need to print, then you definately don’t must create the design from scratch. Nonetheless, if you wish to create your individual design, you will have 3D modeling software program.

3D modeling software program is used to design elements that may be 3D printed. There are numerous completely different software program choices obtainable, starting from beginner-friendly to professional-level applications. Common choices embody Tinkercad, Fusion 360, and SolidWorks.

Inexperienced persons might discover Tinkercad to be a very good place to begin for its ease of use and intuitive interface. Extra superior customers might choose Fusion 360 and SolidWorks for his or her complete characteristic units and superior instruments. Fusion 360 gives a free model for non-commercial use, making it a terrific choice to get began with.

As soon as a mannequin has been created, it may be exported as an STL file, which may then be imported into slicing software program to arrange it for 3D printing.


There are a number of supplies obtainable for 3D printing drone elements. The commonest ones are:

  1. TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) – A versatile and rubber-like materials that’s supreme for shock absorbers, motor mounts, and different elements that require flexibility.
  2. PLA (Polylactic Acid) – It’s most likely the most typical filament utilized in 3D printing because it’s biodegradable, simple to print and has a low melting level, however it’s brittle and has low impression resistance.
  3. ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) – A robust, sturdy, and heat-resistant plastic. It has a better melting level than PLA, nevertheless it is more difficult to print attributable to warping and requires a heated mattress.
  4. PETG (Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol) – A fabric that mixes the power and sturdiness of ABS with the convenience of printing of PLA. It has a excessive melting level and wonderful layer adhesion.

Every materials has its properties, benefits, and downsides. The selection of fabric is determined by the particular software, design necessities, and private desire. Personally, I exploit TPU and PETG 99% of the instances, TPU for versatile elements and PETG for inflexible elements.

Get TPU filament right here: 

Get PETG filament right here: 

Enhance Printing Outcomes

Have the printer and slicer settings dialled in makes an enormous distinction to the printing high quality. Some key settings to regulate embody layer peak, infill density, and print pace. The best settings might fluctuate relying on the complexity and dimension of the half, your printing setting and the fabric you utilize.

When printing with completely different supplies, you should definitely alter the print temperature and mattress temperature to match the really helpful settings for that particular materials. It is usually essential to correctly degree the mattress to make sure a profitable print.

Common upkeep and calibration of your printer are additionally essential for constant and dependable printing.

Design Assets

There are numerous sources obtainable for locating and sharing 3D printable FPV drone elements. Thingiverse, Yeggi and MyMiniFactory are among the common web sites the place yow will discover all kinds of 3D printable drone elements. Moreover, some drone producers and retailers supply 3D printable elements STL recordsdata on their web sites.


In conclusion, the world of 3D printing gives FPV drone fans an unparalleled alternative to push the boundaries of customization and innovation. Whether or not it’s crafting sturdy replacements for damaged elements, designing distinctive equipment, or experimenting with new drone modifications, 3D printing empowers pilots to reinforce their flying expertise. By choosing the precise 3D printer, mastering slicing software, and selecting the suitable filament, anybody can begin bringing their customized drone visions to life. The journey from downloading your first design to watching your customized half take form within the printer isn’t just rewarding; it’s a step right into a future the place the one restrict to what you possibly can create is your creativeness.

Edit Historical past

  • Jan 2021 – article created
  • Mar 2023 – article up to date
  • Feb 2024 – article up to date


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