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How to Setup a Lumenier QAV-R

How to Setup a Lumenier QAV-R

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In part 1 of the Lumenier QAV-R build we did all the physical build of the quad.  Part two will be programing the QAV-R.  Good news is that it’s very simple!  Follow the directions below and it’ll be a piece of cake.

Taranis Setup

If you are building the Lumenier QAV-R kit, it will come with a Taranis bin file that has everything already programmed for you.  All you have to do is plug the microSD memory card from the Taranis into your computer.  Inside the card will be a folder called Models.  Drag the Taranis bin file into that folder.  Put the SD card back into the Taranis.  Go to the models page in the Taranis and scroll to an empty slot.  Press and hold enter and select restore model. Pick the model you just dragged into the memory card.  Once you do that everything will already be programmed for you.  Done!

First thing we need to do is create a new model on the Taranis, assign all the switches, bind the XSR and setup telemetry.  Watch the video above on how to do that.

When you bind the XSR rx to your taranis, make sure the mode is set to D16.

setup qavr

We’ll set up our switches this way:

setup qavr

Channels 1-4 can’t be assigned to switches.  These are reserved for controlling the quad: throttle, aileron, elevator, rudder.

Channel 5 – (AUX1): Flight Modes (angle, horizon and acro)

Channel 6 – (AUX2): Arm/Disarm, Buzzer

Channel 7 – (AUX3): Airmode (optional)

Taranis Telemetry

These are the logic conditions for telemetry.  These are just some basic logics I have set.  Once you learn the basics here you can create your own logics.

setup qavr

L1 when RSSI is less than 55 in the SD up (armed) state for 2 seconds.

L2 when Vfas (lipo battery voltage) is less than 14v in the SD up (armed) state for 3 seconds.

L3 when the timer equals 3 minutes in the SD up (armed) state for .1 second.

L4 when the timer equals 5 minutes in the SD up (armed) state for .1 second.

When these logics are true, then these functions will occur.

setup qavr

SF4 – L1 = true, the Taranis will play RSSI once every 3 seconds

SF5 – L2 = true, the Taranis will play Vfas (battery voltage) once every 5 seconds

SF6 – L3 = true, the Taranis will play Tmr1 once

SF7 – L4 = true, the Taranis will play Tmr1 once

Before you can get the voltage warnings to work, you have to tell the Taranis what you want to assign for battery voltage.  Go to the Telemetry screen and assign FAS as the Voltage Source.

setup qavr

Telemetry Screens

The Taranis is able to display 3 different telemetry screens each with 12 functions.  Here’s an example of my screen.

setup qavr

Vfas is the battery voltage of the QAV-R and Batt is the Taranis battery voltage.

Flash BetaFlight

Next we’ll flash BetaFlight on the DODO flight controller.

setup qavr

  1.  In Chrome, install CleanFlight configurator.
  2. Download and install the correct CP210x USB to UART Bridge VCP driver for your computer system if you don’t already have it.
  3. Download the HEX code for BetaFlight.  Go here, scroll down to Downloads and find the HEX code for RMDO.hex, click and download.
  4. Open CleanFlight and connect the USB to the DODO.
  5. Go to “Firmware Flasher” on the left.
  6. Turn on Manual baud rate, 256000
  7. Click “Load Firemware [Local}” on the bottom right.
  8. Select the RMDO.hex file you downloaded in step 3.
  9. Click “Flash Firmware”
  10. Done.  Click connect.  Your DODO is now running BetaFlight

Common reasons why your DODO won’t connect to CleanFlight

  1. The VCP driver wasn’t installed or the wrong version was installed.
  2. The wrong COM port was selected
  3. Something wrong with the USB cable.  A lot of my readers have run into this issue.  I use this AmazonBasics USB to Micro-USB cable and it works fine.
  4. Sometimes I have to open Cleanflight first then plug in the DODO before the SiLabs com port will show up.
Cleanflight Settings

qavr-build-1010Here are the settings you need to for the QAV-R setup.  Make sure you hit save and reboot before moving on to the next screens.

If you are building from the Lumenier QAV-R kit, all you have to do is flash the DODO flight controller with BetaFlight and calibrate the ESC and accelerometer.  Then restore the settings from the backup file.  The kit comes with a backup file that will program all the settings for you in Cleanflight.  After you flash the DODO with BetaFlight, click restore from the main page.  Select the .txt backup file and click ok.  Done, all the screens are all setup for the QAV-R.

Turn on serial RX on UART3 for your SBUS.  Then enable Telemetry by selecting SmartPort on UART2.  This will tell the DODO where the telemetry info is coming in on the SmartPort wire.


setup qavr


Sometimes when I calibrate the ESC with OneShot on, I get some yaw twitch issues so I turn it off for ESC calibration.  Set min Throttle to 1000 and max throttle to 2000.  (see video above on ESC calibration process).  Change the YAW correction to 90 degrees because we have the DODO facing the right side of the quad.

setup qavr

In the receiver mode, select RX_Serial and SBUS in the serial receiver provider because we have the XSR running in SBUS mode.

setup qavr

Enable Telemetry in the features.

setup qavr


Here are some good general PIDs for having fun and goofing off.  Make sure you are using the LuxFloat PID controller for the DODO.  It flies beautifully.

qavr build


Here’s a quick mini breakdown on PID tuning.

  1. P – Proportional – this is the setting that will have the most effect on your quad.  This is the amount of effect your stick movements have on your quad.  Given the exact same amount of stick movements, a high P will move the quad a lot more than a low P value.
  2. I – Integral – This is how well your quad holds it’s position.  Too low and your quad will try to come back to level quickly.  Too high and your quad will over correct and feel slippery with bad control.
  3. D – Derivative – This is how quickly your quad will return to it’s original position.
  4. Rates – This is how much effect the sticks have at the end of stick movements.

In the receiver tab is change the Channel Map to TAER1234.  If you don’t your sticks won’t react correctly.  Change the deadbands, RC and Expos.

qavr build



setup qavr

ESC Calibration and Motor directions

L3 = true, the Taranis will play Tmr1 once

*Make sure this part is done with the PROPS OFF*

Plug in the battery and hit Motor Test Mode.  Move each individual slider to make sure the correct motors spin up and in the correct direction according to the diagram in the top left corner.  If the motor is spinning the wrong direction, reverse any two of the three motor wires.  This will make the motor spin the opposite direction.

Next calibrate the ESC.  With the battery unplugged, turn on motor test mode and move the master slider all the way to the top.  Plug in the battery and you’ll hear a series of tones.  Before the tones end, move the master slider all the way down.

Unplug the battery and reconnect.  Move the master slider up slowly and see if all the motors spin up approximately the same time.

Then go back to the configurations screen and turn on OneShot and change min throttle to 1050.

Congratulations, you are finished!

Once you’ve verified the correct motor direction and calibrated the ESCs, you can shrink the heat shrink on the ESC and arms.


The QAV-R is currently my favorite quad.  It’s a fairly easy frame to build as you can see.  The frame is super tough.  I’ve flown into many things and have yet to break anything on the frame.  The balanced frame combined with the DODO flight controller makes even a crappy pilot like me look like I know how to fly.

custom lumenier qav-r

If you found this post helpful, it would be super cool if you purchased the components from my store or purchase items from my Amazon links.  These posts are expensive and take a loooong time to make especially this one!  Some of the segments in the video I had to reshoot 3-4 times because CleanFlight was messing up my screen recording and making the separate audio tracks not sync up.  The purchases make it possible for me to keep making them.  Thanks in advance, I greatly appreciate it 🙂

By | 2016-08-13T11:19:47+00:00 June 13th, 2016|Build, Review|62 Comments


  1. Mark Johnson 06/13/2016 at 10:06 am - Reply

    Fantastic! Very informative.

  2. Brad Beebe 06/14/2016 at 12:22 am - Reply

    Wondering will you be selling the QAV R completed as you do with the 250 and 210

    • FlightClub 06/14/2016 at 1:55 pm - Reply

      I’ve got the one I made for the video for sale if you are interested. Send me a note

      • Brad 06/14/2016 at 2:22 pm - Reply

        Yes im very interested. Send me email on price

  3. Juan 06/14/2016 at 2:37 pm - Reply

    I am having some issues with setting up the telemetry…. The options under Telemetry that i show are different, for example the only two options that i have under Voltage Source are A1 and A2, i have no way of selecting FAS.

    • Josh Fitz 06/26/2016 at 5:19 pm - Reply

      Having the same issue here, I can’t figure it out. If you find a solution please email me.

      • mar7inz 07/13/2016 at 12:23 am - Reply

        Same issue. This seems to happen to all of my builds. Perhaps @Flightclub should make a article discussing why voltage telemetry never works properly. Alot of people have this issue where, you get voltage showing in CleanFlight, but you don’t see it on your Taranis.

        @Flightclub fixed the RSSI in OSDoge, so maybe he can make an article about this too!

        • FlightClub 07/13/2016 at 9:59 am - Reply

          did you assign the voltage source as VFAS in your taranis?

    • Niko 10/06/2016 at 9:32 am - Reply

      You should try to plug your battery before creating VFAS in telemetry, mine was empty (i choosed A2 first it didnt worked so i deleted it, i solved the problem by pluggin my battery before configuring this entry and recreating VFAS entry in telemetry on the taranis.

      • FlightClub 10/06/2016 at 3:03 pm - Reply

        yeah sorry, I was running an older taranis firmware that already had VFAS. On the newer firmware you have to have your quad plugged in for it to show up.

  4. Brad beebe 06/14/2016 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    Yes i am very interested please email me price

    • FlightClub 06/14/2016 at 5:36 pm - Reply

      Brad, I sent you an email.

  5. Brad 06/15/2016 at 3:48 pm - Reply

    Mark it sold sent return email

    • FlightClub 06/15/2016 at 11:28 pm - Reply

      SOLD! email sent 🙂

  6. Juan Ruiz 06/20/2016 at 3:53 pm - Reply

    Mike, can this OSD display RSSI in the OSD?
    Also, any word on when you’ll be selling this kit with 6″ arms?

    • FlightClub 06/20/2016 at 8:33 pm - Reply

      no, this is a simple PDB that displays timer, voltage and amps. The rssi warning is setup in the telemetry.

  7. Chris 06/20/2016 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    This was my first build. Thank you so much for putting in the work to go through each step. The only thing that I think would have helped is if the battery wires were soldered in AFTER the other tiny wires, that would have saved me some anguish. My soldering could use some practice too i guess. The only issue I’m having is that the Failsafe is only shutting off my two front motors and I have no idea how to fix that.

    Again, thank you. I’ll be coming here more often.

    • FlightClub 06/20/2016 at 8:36 pm - Reply

      Hi Chris, glad your first build went well! Welcome to the new addiction.

      Was your throttle all the way down when you set the failsafe?

    • Alex 07/26/2016 at 11:16 pm - Reply

      Hey Chris, I’m midway through my first build and have some concerns about my soldering job as well. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being “perfect,” how would you say you did with the solder? Mine look pretty good, like a 7. Wondering about the tiny wires.

      • Chris 07/27/2016 at 11:10 am - Reply

        Alex, those little wires are a bitch. I would say that my soldering is probably a 5. I was fully planning on having to re-do the entire build. That was 3 months ago with a ton of hours in the air with multiple hard crashes. I haven’t had any issues. I’m looking forward to the 5 alien kit… especially now that I kinda know what I’m doing. My Instagram is “Ripper888” if you want to see how it turned out.

  8. Chris 06/20/2016 at 7:24 pm - Reply

    What kind of batteries do you suggest. I just hovered for a bit with a Lumenier 3s 1300mah. The motors were a little hot and it seemed to drain really quick.

    • FlightClub 06/20/2016 at 8:37 pm - Reply
      • Chris 06/21/2016 at 4:55 am - Reply

        I’m worried about the motors getting warm/hot. Since this is my first build I don’t know what to expect. I can’t remember my ImmersionRC Vortex 285 ever having noticeably warm motors. Is that normal or did I screw something up?

        • FlightClub 06/21/2016 at 7:59 pm - Reply

          they shouldn’t be getting hot. after a super hard acro flight my motors are hardly warm.

          • Chris 06/22/2016 at 5:53 am

            @Flightclub I hovered when I got home yesterday and there was some wobbling going on. I went to stock PIDs and it seems to have cured both the wobble and the warm motors. I plan to get larger batteries but for now I have 8 Lumenier 3s 1300mah batteries. In your opinion, is it worth flying with them for now and how much flight time might I get?
            Again, thank you for all the work you put in.

          • FlightClub 06/22/2016 at 1:23 pm

            those batteries will work. flight time depends on how hard you fly. it can range from 5 to 2 min.

  9. Brad 06/20/2016 at 11:56 pm - Reply

    Wow is all I can say Mike total different beast than the QAV250 and much easier to fly I am very Impressed

    • FlightClub 06/21/2016 at 7:58 pm - Reply

      yeah it’s crazy how fast technology is advancing. it’s hard to keep up with everything!

  10. Joe 07/25/2016 at 10:09 pm - Reply

    whenever I plug in the dodo, it starts beeping every second. I’m not sure why, please help!

  11. Jimd 08/11/2016 at 11:03 am - Reply

    I would like to have a 3D printed piece that would snap onto the VTX antenna that would change it’s profile from a “mushroom” to a cone shape. That would protect it from catching on branches and cracking or pulling it out of the VTX.

  12. [email protected] 08/13/2016 at 2:45 pm - Reply

    Any setup on the PRO OSD?

  13. Larry 09/18/2016 at 2:41 pm - Reply

    Just want to reiterate how awesome this setup is: I recently built a QAVR using the Kiss FC, DYS XS20A, Quad Revo Power OSD, Emax 2205-2300, FrSky XSR, Lumenier Tx5gPro, and Foxeer camera. I couldn’t be happier with how this performs all around. This has such a tight snap as it can easily maneuver out of jam. The amount of torque always you to easily flip this inside out and all around. Out of the box, I would make a serious plug for the KissFC as it is super easy to adjust and destroys my naze setup. I’ve been using this on 3s batteries and getting fairly high performance, but it cooks my batteries. Nonetheless, I’m going to rebuild my QAV180 to incorporate a lot of the same parts. All in all, this is a top notch build that I would recommend to anyone. Mikes right: this will make you a better pilot. My skills have seriously elevated since flying this for a couple of days.

    • FlightClub 09/18/2016 at 7:01 pm - Reply

      I agree! this setup is such a pleasure to fly

  14. Marsid 09/20/2016 at 6:51 pm - Reply

    Are there any steps to set up rssi on the taranis or is everything we need to know in the video?

    • FlightClub 09/20/2016 at 7:45 pm - Reply

      everything is in the video. are you having a problem?

      • Marsid 09/20/2016 at 7:53 pm - Reply

        No i was just confused because you did a rssi set up in the QAV210 set up video and i was wondering why you didn’t do it in this video

        • FlightClub 09/21/2016 at 9:41 am - Reply

          the rssi setup on the QAV210 is for the OSD. this build uses the PowerOSD and it doesn’t show rssi. the rssi setup on this is through the telemetry on the xsr

  15. Charles 10/01/2016 at 1:50 pm - Reply

    The 3 differnt flight modes? Can please explain what they are and what they do?

    • FlightClub 10/01/2016 at 9:08 pm - Reply

      Angle – self leveling mode with a limit on the flight angle. no flips or rolls
      Horizon – same as angle but no limit on flight angle. can do flips and rolls
      Acro – full manual flight. flips, rolls and other shenanigans

  16. Niko 10/01/2016 at 4:11 pm - Reply

    Hi Mike I had the connexion problem with dodo in cleanflight for a day, used a new cable and all is ok , as like you said : “Something wrong with the USB cable. A lot of my readers have run into this issue. I use this AmazonBasics USB to Micro-USB cable and it works fine.”
    Thanks again !

    • FlightClub 10/01/2016 at 9:09 pm - Reply

      right on! sometimes the issue is as simple as a bad USB cable

  17. shawn.myers1145 10/23/2016 at 4:07 pm - Reply

    Hi Mike. Just finished building this quad and took it for it’s maiden flight. It does fly like a dream! I had a problem with the PID’s off of the backup file. I think it might be a newer version of beatflight issue, it will not accept decimal values.. I manually adjusted the PID’s and fixed the issue. Appreciate such a nice kit!!

  18. Marvin Bertin 11/09/2016 at 1:46 am - Reply

    When I connect the usb to the Dodo the lights flash, but it never connects to CleanFlight! As recommended, I installed the CP210x Driver. The STM USB VCP Driver file only has an .exe file (for windows), so I can’t install it on my Mac. I’d apreciate any kind of help!

    • FlightClub 11/10/2016 at 11:56 am - Reply

      i emailed you links

  19. David Lewis 12/18/2016 at 7:11 pm - Reply

    My tranis is not talking to the cleanflight when I move sticks or switches no UI changes. I followed everything exactly but no success. It is bound properly and if I power off I get no signal warning but for some reason no input from receiver to quad/cleanflight.

    Also, since there are no more decimals in CF for the PID, can you show me Mike what your recommended settings are now?

    • FlightClub 12/19/2016 at 11:06 am - Reply

      i replied to your email

  20. Laurent Chavet 12/31/2016 at 5:06 pm - Reply

    That is a great post; it has helped me build & setup my QAV-R.
    I am having a problem where the AccZ shows as 0.46 on the Taranis when the quad isn’t moving; I can’t figure out how to fix it.
    Any help would be much appreciated.


  21. Nathan 02/13/2017 at 5:33 pm - Reply

    I have the qav-r. I’m having a similar issue. I can connect to clean flight, my Taranis is bound to xsr with a solid green light, but in the clean flight setup I’m not getting a reaction on the screen when I move sticks….please help.

    • FlightClub 02/13/2017 at 8:58 pm - Reply

      do you have the correct ports configured in the ports tab?

  22. Nathan 02/13/2017 at 9:04 pm - Reply

    I’m not sure? Where would the ports tab be? How do I know which one is the right one? Thanks for your help. This is my first build.

    • FlightClub 02/13/2017 at 9:35 pm - Reply

      did you download and install the vcp drivers?

  23. Nathan 02/13/2017 at 9:13 pm - Reply

    When I connect to cleanflight is says COM3 for the port….it doesn’t change to the port name yours does in the video.

  24. Nathan 02/13/2017 at 9:16 pm - Reply

    I setup everything like it is in the video after I connected to cleanflight.

  25. Nathan 02/17/2017 at 5:17 pm - Reply

    Haha. I didn’t install them after I downloaded them. That fixed that issue. Now I have followed instructions again through video and I have an issue when I get to the receiver. My roll and throttle are switched. I can’t figure it out. My Taranis x9dp is def mode 2 model with throttle on left?? Any ideas on what I did wrong. Thanks again for all the help.

    • FlightClub 02/17/2017 at 11:56 pm - Reply

      on the receiver tab, change the channel map to TAER1234. follow the guide closely. If you miss a single step it won’t work.

      • Nathan 02/19/2017 at 5:05 pm - Reply

        I finally got it setup and working except I have one motor that isn’t turning. I took it back apart and looked at my soldering jobs and they look good so I’m not sure what to do next…..should I take it apart and switch with another to see if motor is bad or is there another way?

  26. Nathan 02/19/2017 at 8:10 am - Reply

    I did change it to TAER1234 and still same. Showing throttle on right stick…..

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