The Quick Swap PDB enables solder-less arm connections with ESC power being routed into specially designed power taps and the ESC Servo connection being made available on the side underneath the power connection. This enables you to detach both ESC power and Servo connections in seconds and without the need of a soldering iron or to take your airframe apart.
It's compatible with any ESC and does not require any special connectors to be fitted to the ESCs either, just bare power wires is all that's needed - although 2mm bullet connectors are a perfect fit as well. The Quick Swap board uses the standard mounting holes used by most flight controllers of 30.5mm. This board makes servicing of airframes such as the QAV-R a breeze. Carry a few pre-built arms and downtime from a damaged motor or burned out ESC is minimized significantly. The included right angle pin headers can be soldered directly to the PDB. There are solder pads adjacent to the pin header holes enabling you to use short wire to jump the ground/signal wire to your flight controller. By implementing this feature your ESC signal cable can be hot swapped without the need for desoldering from the FC.
- Dimensions: L36 x W50 x H8mm (mounting holes at 30.5mm)
- Weight: 13g
- Material: 2mm PCB, 2oz copper with ENIG plating for high current
- 1x 4Power Quick Swap PDB
- 4x 10cm Male servo cable to bare wire
- 2x 1x6 right angle pin headers
Good start, needs improvement review by OCD on 5/19/2016
In general good, but I need to talk about real world use and my experience and expectations.
My core interest was the removable arm/hot swap feature. Excellent feature, a few comments on that:
-Put electrical tape over the top of the set-screw holes, seriously.
-Do not loose a set screw, they are impossible to find if you drop.
-If you run tight or minimal wiring and decide you don't like the unit will will probably need to re-solder longer leads, so leave the wire a little long if you may swap to another PDB later.
Problems I had:
-Weight, not to big of a concern, but it is heavy compared to other PDBs
-Only one 5v voltage out, sorta. The power comes via the Pololu (don't forget to buy one!), but most of the time I need regulated 5v and 12v. This is why the unit was finally removed. Sure you can put in a 12v Pololu, still, 2 voltages are common, no room for another Pololu. I hate having a BEC flapping, so it left the chassis.
-The aux and 5v pads are small and I hate doubling up connections on a pad. (2+ wires per pad = boo)
-The signal thru-pins are not cool. Soldering directly to the end of a pin was my only option? These joints are weaker, I would love a via/thru-hole for signal.
-Some of the components are soft plastic, don't be sloppy.
ProTip: Think out your FC to PDB wiring carefully. Make all the leads come around from one side so the FC can open like a book (the wires being the hinge). My first pass was all fail making small leads and I could not access the PDB or move anything. My mistake is not too hard to make if you are used to short wires and not having the ESC signal sub-routed.
ProTip: For putting in raw wire, tin them really good, draw the solder into the wire with the tip. That combination makes the connection very solid and the cable will last for ever. Loose wire that is not tinned will decompose quickly.
Overall I applaud the work and I hope my thoughts are valid and contribute to positive change.
Nice =Board but to Large for Quad 250 review by Bryan on 3/24/2016
I liked the idea of the board but installing it with all the other components it took up too much room. Also the set screws are too far back and the wire mount holes are not large enough for tinned ESC wires without TLC before install. Hard to R&R regulator from board.
Ingenious design review by madcrafted78 on 3/19/2016
I am using this on my 5" QAV-R and while it isn't the most attractive design, it has my vote on practicality and ease of repairs. I had a bad ESC that needed replacing right from the start. Without having to tear the quad down and resolder to PDB, I just plugged in my new ESC (after soldering 2mm bullets and shortening signal wire on ESCs, of course) and was good to go.
I can see where this would be extremely beneficial in a racing scenario, where you needed to swap motors/ESCs or even cracked arms... depending on your frame.
I decided to not even use the set screws because the bullets fit snugly enough. This way I don't have to bother with threadlocking set screws so they don't rattle loose. I just simply covered holes with clear packaging tape to keep out dirt/mud.
I used a 12v pololu for aux 2 to run camera/vtx and with a 25c 1000 uF capacitor soldered to battery pads, I have no issues with noise form ESCs bleeding into my FPV gear running on 4S.
I plan to pre-solder some 30A ESCs with 2206 motors on some 6" arms, so I can switch up whenever I feel like it. That's the real beauty of this PDB for me.
Only one little gripe. I would like to see a quick swap designed more X-frame layouts where ESCs leads would plug in in the corners as opposed to the sides.
All in all, this is a great option for those that want to have the ability to swap out ESCs and motors on the fly... or even be able to switch between 5" and 6" setups with ease.
I really do like it but not really working for me. review by Justin on 3/15/2016
First off, this is my first racing quad build so I'm chalking some of my problems up to poor planning. I'm using it on a QAVRXL body. I wrote a long review to try to help anybody else avoid some of my problems and decide if this is the right board for them.
-It is incredibly difficult to get the screws lined up. One of them legitimately took 20 tries to get lined up I about returned the board as defective. A longer screw might help some as it would be easier to line up, but then it might not be flush with larger diameter.
-I was able to strip one of the wire fastener screws. But I should have been using 2mm bullets as I was using a small diameter wire. But I worry if you are doing frequent changes this would be a problem. It would be nice to know where to buy new ones or how to buy longer screws. Like in the description of the product on the getfpv website;)
Things I wish I knew:
-Using the right angle connectors under the distribution board and soldering the servo wires on top PDB to connect to the Flight controller is awesome, but for me seemed to add extra wires and make the PDB and FC area a whole lot messier. The benefit is that you can change an arm without taking the top plate off. I was really just wanting to be able to change an arm without soldering, and without buying a whole new frame, not really being able to change an arm with that little hassle. Maybe if I flew more and needed to replace arms at the field it'd be worth the cable management it'd take to make that not messy.
-2mm bullet connectors would work well but these limit you to 20A of current. If you are using a 20amp ESC with it's 20 gauge wire you'll definitely want the Bullet connectors cuz the 20 gauge power wire for your ESC is too small to get clamped down by the screw without a lot of force, and then you'll start stripping the screws, and when you get the screw that pushed through there isn't much thread left.
-Be very careful if you solder the servo wires on top of the PDB, it's very easy to melt some plastic. Do it all over again I'd put a strip of hobby plywood in to protect. when I soldered those as a barrier. I didn't end up doing any real damage, but it looks ugly.
I'm torn on whether or not to buy another board as I've pretty much trashed the functionality of my board. I've got it working, but it won't really be swappable. I'm currently running 3S and don't need 30amp capability but likely going to 4S and will need it which means I don't want to do the 2mm bullets. I wish I could have tried it with 16 gauge wire in the fastener.
As I'm not using the right angle servo connectors, I'll probably just put 3.5mm bullet connector coming off the PDB that comes with the QAVRXL so I'm still swappable without soldering.
Brilliant Product review by RobB on 3/6/2016
Brilliant product. Solves a lot of problems I had with existing PDB's. I placed one on a QAV-R and bought another straight away to put on my QAV-250. It sticks out slightly either side on the 250 but makes working on the quad much easier.
I would suggest buying 2mm bullets as it will make using the PDB much easier than trying to fit in bared back wires. I have not found the screws vibrating loose at all but be careful as they are easy to cross thread.
Soldering was easy and the addition of a 5v Pololu ticked all the boxes I needed.