Power to weight ratio is crucial when it comes priming your drone for certain conditions and determining what your drone is used for. Racing drones need to be carefully optimised to make sure they can be use competitively and win races! However, do you optimise for speed or do you optimise for endurance? Here are 3 tips to keep in mind when looking at building your racing drone.
1. Choose your priorities
Depending on the kind of races you are participating in (time trails, endurance races, obstacle courses etc), you’ll have to decide between having a drone with a heavy batter and stronger battery life with several components or a light and airy drone with minimal components. Of course for speed, light and airy is the best option for a race that can last around 10 minutes or so. However, if you participate in longer races you may need more battery and more components to get around the track.
2. Calculate and ‘perfect’
The most important part of optimising the power-to-weight ratio of your drone is to calculate and figure out the physics of the drone that you are flying. For racing you will need to look at having a higher thrust to weight ratio so you can gain a bit of agility and speed. The table underneath explains the calculations that you will need to determine what you want. You must calculate your thrust to be 50% more than the total weight of the drone so that you can still have a stable unit. When buying a drone, you can easily get your head around the specific flight time they specify on the box but do incorporate the weight as well so you can have a more accurate power estimation.
See an example power to weight ratio chart here:
3. Think about costs
To be more efficient we must also think about all the costs that come with drone building and, of course, the more components you have the more expensive it will be. As well as this, large and strong frames with high voltage batteries can leave a dent in your bank but there is ultimately no easy way to get a longer battery life and have a light and agile racing drone.
Remember, it is all about what works best for you and your drone. You might be skilled at manoeuvring a heavier racing drone than controlling a light one that has less power. It is always a personal decision when it comes to drones and their components but ultimately it is good to stick to the simpler more agile drone weights and build your way up to find the perfect power-to-weight ratio.