TEST: IDEAFLY GRASSHOPPER F210

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INTRODUCTION

After the F210, the first racer from Ideafly, here is a new variant, the Ideafly Grasshopper F210. This new variation not only mimics admirably the insect design but the more important comes in 4S configuration while keeping a SPF3 FC board. More, the advertized the max-speed can reach 230km/h !!!!! Let’s discover the bundle.

BOX CONTENT

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+ 1 x Ideafly Grasshopper F210 (with a 4S 1300mAh LiPo with XT60 connector)
+ 1 x Transmitter (using 4xAA batteries not included)
+ 1 x Charger (LiPo/Life batteries)
+ 4 x Spare props (2 CW, 2 CCW)
+ 1 x CDrom
+ 4 x Velcro bands
+ 1 x Instruction manual (English)

OVERVIEW

The design completly mimics the insect, and the look is just great for me, especially with the two antennas and frontal mouth. The Grasshopper is a 210mm racer machine.

-FRONT VIEW

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The FPV CMOS camera can be tilted with an angle superior to 45 degrees, ideal for agressive flights

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-SIDE VIEW
No potential HDcam camera mount at least without modding.

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Two ovoid red eyes are here to represents the eyes of the grasshopper. The eyes are flashing according the activity of the FC.
The lower part of the front vertical plates below the mouth design is the most fragile IMHO.

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The main lower plate is 3mm

-REAR VIEW
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3 LEDs lights are here. Green when the machine is on the ground, blue when is the air

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-UPPER VIEW
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When the canopy is open, we can see the PWM wiring for the receiver. We can think in case of of front massive crash, the connector will be damaged by the battery.

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Anyway, I think the 2 nylon standoffs should considerably slowdown the mechanism…. In the worst case, you can reverse upside down the positionning of the receiver. It’s also advised to add a velcro strap close the battery strap to avoid the canopy to be pulled midflight.

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On each arm, a 30A ESC simply attached with a double side tape

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Luckely there are some zip ties to secure more efficiently their installation. Unfortunatly, the firwmare is too old to be seen directly via BLHelisuite via cleanflight passthrough. At least, Damping light and oneshot 125 feartures are here already.

-BOTTOM VIEW

a unibody lower plate structure so no easy arm maintenance

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Below motors, a small piece of plastic plays the role of landing skid… In practice, this plastic element will break super fast after 3-4 hard landings even without any crash.

-WEIGHT
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Close to 500g for the total weight

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Motors & Props

Motors are protected by a a thin plastic guard.. Not sure it will be enough to protect motor definitively

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2205 bushless motor announced to be 2300KV.

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Some simple left-hand or right hand nuts to attach props. You will need to fasten them well via a wrench

5mm shaft diameter

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Two set of props are offered both 5045 type, one bi-blades set and one tri-blades set.

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LiPo

A 1300mAh 4S with 45C for discharge rate…. should be strong enough to send the Grasshopper to Mars 🙂

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A 65mmx33mmx32mm battery

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Camera module

A 700TVL PAL camera … with CMOS sensor. The orientation can be set with positive and even negatives angles. The general performances is in the average with no possibility to apply any settings. The FOV is a little more narrow than usual ones we can find in similar racer models. The FOV should be around 100 degrees.

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FPV module

A 40CH model with RP-SMA connector. Unfortunatly, the Vfreq/Vband button is hidden by the heatshrink tube jailing the VTX.

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You can click on it externally. The location is on the antenna side, bottom at 2/3 of the side.

The emitted power is good, over the announced 200mW

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Flight controller

A SPracing F3 board flipped of 90 degrees. No buzzer or OSD are present…. a real drawback. ESC’s wire are directly soldered on the FC and should be protected with hotglue. The Grasshopper comes with Betaflight 2.6.

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By default, the switchB select the flight modes: Angle, Baro and acro modes. Default dump is given below.

Transmitter

A classic FlySky i6 rebranded with 2 two-ways and 2 three-ways switches. The firwmware is an ideafly one quiet old but at least offering 10CH !!!

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but no possibility to set D/R individually to CH1, CH2 and CH4 respectively

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FIRST USAGE

The Grasshopper takes off from 30% of throttle and the throttle control is particulary touchy. As soon as you take off, the rear lights turns to blue. Punch out are impressive, nothing illogical since we have a small 210mm 4S system.

The FOV is a little bit surprizing, a little bit narrow and you have the feeling that the machine is super slow. The machine with the default settings is stable and nimble but the yaw command have a super-expo setting troubling a little bit. Let’s be clear immediatly, this grasshopper don’t fly at 230km/h neither 150km/g…. maximum 80-90 km/h…. The FPV signal presented a lot of glitches despite the 350mW emitted power.

In practice, as you can see in this new demo flight, you have to very well faster the antenna to limit glitches and increase range… it’s not super easy with the current VTX location.

The Grasshopper is super powerfull but be aware in descent rate, even with throttle to 0%, motors continue to spin and you can’t descend super fast. Try to decrease the minimum throttle value to 1050. Another strange behaviour is the feeling of yaw-self turning in straight lines and/or at beginning of turns…. Clearly, Default firmware of ESC can’t handle such amount of power

CONCLUSIONS

The Grasshopper is a powerful and solid machine full 3K carbon based. No real drawback except maybe the absence of a builtin OSD and buzzer. The machine is abiously fast but no super extra speed power as advertized. With the Grasshopper no need to spend tons of hours to tune it. Out the box default settings are good.

UNBOXING

PROS

+ Beautiful design
+ 4S powerful machine
+ Full 3K carbon structure
+ SPF3 board
+ 350mW VTX
+ Camera can tilted with large positive angle

CONS

– Absolue not running at 230km/h
– No OSD
– No Buzzer
– Fragile landing gear
– Hidden Vfreq/Vband button
– No HDcam mount
– Super expo on yaw command
– Baro flight mode leading to crash
Poor FPV range ? Faster carefully the antenna

RCgroups thread: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2722006

This quadcopter have been courtesy provided by Banggood in order to make a fair and not biased review. I would like to thank them for this attitude.
You can find it actually for 280USD at http://www.gearbest.com/multi-rotor-parts/pp_428984.html

2 Comments

  • Shawn says:

    nice review. it would be cool if you had seby award section so, we can find out which quadcopters you rate the highest. any seby award for 2016?

    • SeByDocKy says:

      Nnt any award… the wakkera rodeo was close … but I can’t give the award to a plastic racer … The Xiaomu Mi drone could have it too if their sofware was not so buggy…. The Eachine QX90 was close too … but lack a bit of power to be super acrobatic…
      Expect some new reviews very soon (Eachine Wizard X220 for ex)

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