Setting Up The SPRacingF3Mini Flight Controller

Setting Up The SPRacingF3Mini Flight Controller

The SPRacingF3Mini board from Mr Cleanflight himself, Dominic Clifton, is a very powerful board with a heap of functions & capabilities.  With great power comes great responsibility complexity and it took me  a while to work out what pins I needed to use to make it do what I wanted. So to save you some time and some head scratching, here's what I did and why.

Annotated diagram of the SPRacingF3Mini flight controller

First on my list was the bridge the 5V pins (Number 3 in the diagram). This basically switches all the voltage in pins on the board to become voltage out ones, powered by the onboard 5V regulator. Because I am building a quad with OPTO ESCs (i.e. with no BEC supplying 5V) this was the obvious way to go. It means I can pick up a 5V supply from various points on the flight controller to power accessories. I did this first while the tiny pads are still fairly easy to get to.

Next up, I connected my ESCs to PWM output pins 1-4 (Marked as 6 on the diagram). Being OPTO ESCs the 3 pin servo connectors only have the signal (white) and ground (black) pins wired. Nothing is connected to the red pin as that's now supplying 5V.

Time to hook up my receiver. I'm using a FrSky X4R-SB using SBUS so I used the 3 pins labeled as 9 in the diagram - pins 3, 4 and 5. If you are using standard PPM, it's pins 1,2 and 3 thans you need. That's the yellow pin marked PPM and the red and black ones just above it, aka pins 1, 2 and 3.  

The last of the essentials is the VBAT connection (10) - your main voltage in that powers the board and the 5V regulator if you're using it.

That's all you need to get the board in the air, but it's got some more functionality that I wanted to take advantage of.

The X4R-SB receiver I am using has FrSky SmartPort technology so I simply disconnected all but the green wire in the cable that came with my receiver and connected that to pin marked as 5 on the diagram which is UART2.

Cleanflight ports setup

Now this is where I got a bit confused as I wanted to set up programmable LEDs as well and the manual says this is UART2 as well. I decided to trust in Dominic and connected the data pin of my LEDs to the pin labeled 4 and power and ground to the 5V header marked as 10 above. Success! Let's chalk it up to a well designed board.

I had a Attopilot current sensor floating around from a previous build so I though I may as well add that. Just one wire connected to the pin marked as 7.

Finally, OSD time. As this is tucked away at the front of the quad I used the pins marked up as 1 and 2 to do this. 1 marks the Tx and Rx pins that send a receive the data to the MicroMinim, 2 is another 5V header to power it.



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