Donkey Quad Tips: How To Fly

WATCH THIS VIDEO:  Flite Test - How to Fly a Multirotor
(then, go back and watch it again.  Everything they say is important.)

Pre-flight checks:

  • Propellers free of cracks or damage
  • Propellers securely attached to motors
  • Motors securely fastened to frame
  • ESCs, wires, &etc are secure
  • No cracks or damage to the arms 
  • aircraft battery charged
  • Transmitter has sufficient battery power
  • Transmitter "flight mode" switches as expected


This quad uses the Multiwii platform, which requires you to calibrate the gyros each time you initially power it up, and then ARM the motors before flying.

The basic routine each time is:

  1. Connect the battery to power up the aircraft.
  2. Set the aircraft on a level part of the ground.
  3. Power up the transmitter.
    [Throttle down!]
    (Verify "orange light" on the aircraft receiver after a few seconds.)
  4. Calibrate the Gyro:
    [Left stick "back & left", Right stick "back & center"], then wait three seconds
    Light on FC should come on solid for a second, then off.
  5. Arm Sequence:
    [Left stick "back & right", Right stick neutral.]
    Motors should start spinning.  
    If it won't ARM, try the "Disarm" sequence, then repeat step 4 and 5.
  6. FLY!


  1. Disarm sequence:
    [Left stick "back & left", Right stick neutral]
    Motors should stop.
  2. Disconnect battery.
  3. Shut off transmitter.

Note: I recommend this order because if you power off the transmitter before the aircraft and for some reason the FC is still in "Armed" mode, then it can go into emergency "FAILSAFE" mode, which can spin up the motors unexpectedly.   Never power off the transmitter while the aircraft still has power.

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