Please select Into the mobile phone version | Continue to access the computer ver.
Prop Upgrade Ideas for Spark
914 21 2-1 14:25
Uploading and Loding Picture ...(0/1)
o(^-^)o
Atomicodex
lvl.2
Flight distance : 195659 ft
United States
Offline

I live at high elevation (Colorado) and the air is thinner here, thus props have less to push against and become less efficient. Because of this it can be helpful to "prop up" in order to compensate for the loss of efficiency. I also wouldn't mind finding some props that would be more quiet. Also: I like to customize and hack my tools and toys to my liking.
With that in mind I have come up with a couple of ideas for using non-Spark props on the Spark.

Idea One // Trim Mavic Air props since they have pretty much the exact same mount.
This idea is the most simple, but it's not going do do a heck of a lot for me. I saw a guy on Youtube try this and it wasn't all that great.

Pros: Props are easy to find, no modification to Spark need to happen.

Cons: Only adds a small amount of surface area, trimming may cause poor balance

Idea Two // Add self-tightening prop adapters and use bolt-on props
When you remove the quick-release adapter from the Spark's motor there are two threaded holes where the adapter bolts on. Depending on the size of the thread and the distance between the holes it might be possible to bolt a prop adapter onto the Spark motor then use props like Gemfan 5043s that have a hole the diameter of the adapter shaft along with a nut, or use props that already have a bolt installed in the prop the way that Phantom 3, Inspire One, 3DR Solo, GoPro Karma and 350 QX props do. There are also collet type adapters that cinch onto the motor shaft, but I have my doubts as to whether they would be reliable.

Pros: There would be hundreds of props in various configurations, qualuity and price to choose from. You could basically run anything from a Master Airscrew 5x3 to cheapo Gemfan Hurricane FPV race drone props or a ton of other options. Props would cost less than the OEM in most cases. The modification could easily be reversed if necessary. It would defeinitely allow for dialing in performance and efficiency,

Cons: It requires finding the adapter that matches the layout of the holes as well as the hight of the motor shaft. It could require the motor shaft to be trimmed, which would not be reversible.

Idea Three // Remove the quick release adapters and bolt props directly to the motors
There are props available like these carbon fiber 6055 two blade props that have three holes drilled in the center of the propeller hub that are made to fit motors like the Turnigy Multistar series. If the holes match the ones of the bell of the Spark motors then you're all set. There are also quick release adapters available in this form factor, but they might add too much weight.

Pros: Simple to do and requires no permanent modification to the Spark. Tons of props are available.

Cons: Most of the props that are available in this configuration are two-blade props. I want three blade. Spark motors might also have a weird hole offset from the shaft and not match available props.

Idea Four // Swap the motors out and use whatever props I want.
This would basically involve finding the right size motor with the odd three-hole mount then removing the Spark motors and mounting/soldering them in.

Pros: I would get to choose the prop mounting type and thus have a wide variety of props to choose from. This could have other performance benefits.

Cons: This would void any kind of warranty on the Spark. It could result in unstable performance. Depending on what motors you get they may not last as long as the Spark OEM motors. This would add at least $50 cost as well as the time and effort it take to swap the motors out. The ESCs might be adversely effected by being paired with different motors if the specs were way different. (I don't think the ESCs could actually detect a different brand, but they might sound alarms if the current draw was vastly different, etc.)

So...those are a few ideas I've had. Please give me your input and feedback. If any of you have tried any of these options I wouid love to hear about how it worked out.

Thanks for reading! Happy Flying!


2-1 14:25
Use props
fans6f66f9da
Second Officer
United States
Offline

I didn't have enough motivation to read it all. Sorry. But, how long flight time do you get with it?
2-1 14:33
Use props
eYeSkYeYe
Captain

Croatia
Offline

Props are the only thing keeping your drone in the (thin) air. I would not mess with them.
2-1 16:04
Use props
Rustic17
Captain
Flight distance : 575952 ft
United States
Offline

I've noticed getting Motor Overspeed at high altitude...I think you're on to something, even if newly designed, high elevation props shorten the battery life 10% it would be worth being able to fly at higher elevations.   DJi might have had several prop designs for the Spark and settled on the one that gave the most flight time...versus the one that gave most lift.
2-1 16:37
Use props
Atomicodex
lvl.2
Flight distance : 195659 ft
United States
Offline

fans6f66f9da Posted at 2-1 14:33
I didn't have enough motivation to read it all. Sorry. But, how long flight time do you get with it?

I haven't tried any of the options as yet, but when I upgraded the props on my old Phantom 4 to three blade high-end props I got close to 40 minutes.
2-1 16:48
Use props
Atomicodex
lvl.2
Flight distance : 195659 ft
United States
Offline

eYeSkYeYe Posted at 2-1 16:04
Props are the only thing keeping your drone in the (thin) air. I would not mess with them.

None of these options are likely to make Spark drop out of the sky. All of the props I've considered are either the same quality as OEM or better. Any big problems would be pretty easy to detect in the first minute of flight. I will be testing in a controlled environment in the warehouse where I have my broadcast studio.
2-1 16:52
Use props
jacksonnai
Captain
Malaysia
Offline

Cool! Thanks for sharing!
2-1 18:23
Use props
StetsonWatkins
lvl.4
Flight distance : 1029730 ft
United States
Offline

Interesting ideas.. I'm impressed at the ingenuity that went into the Spark and it's likely that I'll stay with the OEM stuff. This drone is impressive and I'm confident DJI tried multiple prop configurations prior to choosing the winner. Keep us updated on your research. Thanks for sharing.
2-2 13:49
Use props
StetsonWatkins
lvl.4
Flight distance : 1029730 ft
United States
Offline

Also, I have heard of people having issues at high elevation but I fly in the mountains every once in awhile and have never had an issue. When/if I do, I will know what the problem is though.
2-2 13:51
Use props
PatriotArcher
Second Officer
Flight distance : 82148 ft
United States
Offline

Just to clarify, you can put mavic air props on the spark and it works? If so what are the benefits? Quieter, faster, ext.?
2-2 17:50
Use props
Rustic17
Captain
Flight distance : 575952 ft
United States
Offline

StetsonWatkins Posted at 2-2 13:51
Also, I have heard of people having issues at high elevation but I fly in the mountains every once in awhile and have never had an issue. When/if I do, I will know what the problem is though.

You can be in the mountains in Eastern U.S. and really not be at high altitude.  My Motor Overspeed was at 32F and 11,000' elevation west of Denver.
2-2 19:09
Use props
StetsonWatkins
lvl.4
Flight distance : 1029730 ft
United States
Offline

Rustic17 Posted at 2-2 19:09
You can be in the mountains in Eastern U.S. and really not be at high altitude.  My Motor Overspeed was at 32F and 11,000' elevation west of Denver.

Nice! I was definitely flying lower than that in southern New Mexico at 8,600 feet.
2-2 19:28
Use props
Rustic17
Captain
Flight distance : 575952 ft
United States
Offline

In my case the cold was actually helping by making the air more dense.  It probably wasn't helping at all on battery life, though.  Once I got the Motor Overspeed which was right after takeoff, I immediately landed.  It also was flying erratically...and wind wasn't an issue.
2-2 19:37
Use props
maddox
Captain
Malaysia
Offline

Cool! Thanks for sharing!
2-3 06:09
Use props
Lysak2003
Captain
Flight distance : 499924 ft
Ukraine
Offline

Excuse me, which hight above the sea level is where you live?
2-3 11:59
Use props
Atomicodex
lvl.2
Flight distance : 195659 ft
United States
Offline

Lysak2003 Posted at 2-3 11:59
Excuse me, which hight above the sea level is where you live?

I'm currently at about 6,100 ft. above sea level.
2-4 07:51
Use props
Lysak2003
Captain
Flight distance : 499924 ft
Ukraine
Offline

Atomicodex Posted at 2-4 07:51
I'm currently at about 6,100 ft. above sea level.

It's 1860 metres. Last December I flew at 1800+ metres in Carpathians and it's absolutly OK. Air feels the same way like in my city on the Black Sea coast. You need no any improvements with your props on this altitude.
2-4 09:01
Use props
MoFalcon
lvl.1

United States
Offline

High altitude props would be a welcome addition the the spark line-up
2-4 16:53
Use props
Atomicodex
lvl.2
Flight distance : 195659 ft
United States
Offline

Lysak2003 Posted at 2-4 09:01
It's 1860 metres. Last December I flew at 1800+ metres in Carpathians and it's absolutly OK. Air feels the same way like in my city on the Black Sea coast. You need no any improvements with your props on this altitude.

I'm glad you had no problems during your flights, but I definitely want better performance. I noticed a difference between my flights in Orange County, CA at sea level and my flights here at elevation. Bigger props will help. It just comes down to physics.
2-5 12:05
Use props
Lysak2003
Captain
Flight distance : 499924 ft
Ukraine
Offline

Atomicodex Posted at 2-5 12:05
I'm glad you had no problems during your flights, but I definitely want better performance. I noticed a difference between my flights in Orange County, CA at sea level and my flights here at elevation. Bigger props will help. It just comes down to physics.

Of cause I wish you well!
2-5 12:08
Use props
Atomicodex
lvl.2
Flight distance : 195659 ft
United States
Offline

Lysak2003 Posted at 2-3 11:59
Excuse me, which hight above the sea level is where you live?

At or around 6200' or so.
2-12 10:58
Use props
HSCrugby
lvl.1
Flight distance : 40692 ft
United States
Offline

Lysak2003 Posted at 2-4 09:01
It's 1860 metres. Last December I flew at 1800+ metres in Carpathians and it's absolutly OK. Air feels the same way like in my city on the Black Sea coast. You need no any improvements with your props on this altitude.

I think the disconnect, is that he was saying he wanted better performance when he went outside of the city to fly.  Not really while at home.  Where he had the issue was at 11k feet, or about 3300 meters above sea level.    A "simple" swap to a quality 3 blade would be really nice, but I don't want to modify the motors.  But since those wouldn't be foldable, I don't think the market would exist for the third party to work to develop and test it.  
2-13 10:53
Use props
Advanced
You need to log in before you can reply Login | Register now

Credit Rules