Tech Stuff & Reviews

Review: Walkera Rodeo 110 Mini Racing Quad

Mike vom Mars Blog fpv racing kingkong 90gt mini drone mini fpv multicopter quadcopter racing drone racing quad review rodeo 110 test walkera f210 walkera rodeo 110
 
Estimated reading time: 18 minutes  Viewed 7.951 times

2017 is the year of the mini FPV racers: they fly better and more precise due to the lower mass, are cheaper to purchase and maintain, crashes have less dramatic consequences, spare parts are relatively cheap and they are handy and transportable. And they do not fall under law restrictions with their weight below 250 grams.

 

Walkera Rodeo 110 Mini FPV Racer

test review walkera rodeo 110 mini fpv micro racer mini racer multicopter multikopter drohne mini fpv racing mike-vom-mars blog

 

Main Features
5800KV Brushless motors
600 TVL 40-channel 25mW / 200mW FPV camera
OneShot125 ESCs
Screwed 3-blade racing propellers
Power supply: 2S / 3S
Weight: 148g (including battery)
CleanFlight pre-flashed
Beeper installed
Ultra stable body
Modular design (no wires)
Includes: 1x 2S 850mAh Lipo, charger, 8x propellers

 


Exclusive Banggood Coupon Codes

▪ For our readers we have received exclusive discount coupon codes from Banggood, with which you can save up to 25% when buying Mavic, Spark, Mini FPV Racers and accessories such as Runcam Split, FrSky XLITE, antennas, etc. You can find these coupons on our coupons page. This section is constantly updated, so check back often.

 

Useful Links
Walkera Rodeo 110 at Banggood
1000TVL FPV Camera
Mobius Mini HD Action Cam (110 Deg. FOV)
Mobius Mini HD Action Cam (135 Deg. FOV)
Mini Cloverleaf Antenna (no soldering required)
Thingiverse: Protection Cap for Mini Cloverleaf Antenna
Thingiverse: Mobius Mini Mount for Rodeo 110

Impressions

Compared with the smaller KingKong 90GT (ca. 80g) the Rodeo 110 clearly seems to be more robust – but at the cost of more weight, of course. As with the F210, the guts of the quad are extremely well protected and housed in a stable body. Just unscrew the cover plate under the battery and you have access to all important parts: the video transmitter, the flight controller and the plug to which the camera is connected. As with most Walkera quads, all electronic components are modularly plugged together and not soldered or wired. Therefore you can’t find any cables inside – this saves weight and looks very clean and tidy. Even the ESCs are plugged and not soldered. Thus, changing them takes only seconds and does not require a soldering iron. That’s the way it has to be!

The Rodeo has a bright, white front LED and two status LEDs on the sides. The two diversity radio antennas are not rigid, as in the case of the F210, rigid but flexible. The Rodeo has four landing skids and the frame also makes a very stable and indestructible impression. Combined with the low mass of the quad the Rodeo is hardly destructible.

Due to the built-in beeper (which can be triggered via the transmitter if configured correctly in BetaFlight / CleanFlight) you’ll dramatically increase your chances to find the Rodeo in higher grass after a crash. A properly installed beeper / model finder is a must for each mini / micro quad. Never go without one or you’ll lose it right on the first day, believe me.

Propellers

The sturdy 3-blade racing props are pinned up and additionally attached with two small cross-head screws. The props are extremely stable and easily survive a couple of crashes or hard landings. Since the fastening screws of the Props are located a little deep in the propeller, you need a small cross-screw screwdriver with very thin shaft (diameter max 2.4mm). Unfortunately, I could not find out what pitch the propeller blades have, which would be useful to look for cheap alternatives or 4-blade or even 5-blade props. As soon as I have found suitable replacement props, I’ll let you know.

Camera

Antenna mod: Banggood now offers Mini-Cloverleaf Antennas that fit perfectly on the Rodeo. It’s very affordable and remarkably improves the strength of the video signal. Since it comes with a snap-on plug, there is no soldering needed. Replacing the antenna just takes a couple of minutes. Since the upper part of the antenna is quite fragile, I designed a small, lightweighted cap to protect it. Download the .stl file here and print it with your 3D printer.

The 600TVL FPV camera is stepless tiltable and held by two cross-head screws. As with the F210, camera and lens are protected by a stable hood. Unfortunately, there is a trend of many manufacturers to save on the camera. The image quality of the original Rodeo cam is one of the worst I’ve seen so far: the picture is washed out, the cam is unable to handle sudden light / dark changes, and it happens during loops and rolls again and again that the ground suddenly becomes a single black surface.

But thank goodness there is a useful and cheap alternative: the 1000TVL from Banggood. This camera is available for 10 EUR only, fits perfectly into the Rodeo’s camera holder and offers a very sharp picture with brilliant colors and a far better light / darkness handling. Last but not least, the 1000TVL offers an awesome 170 degrees FOV which is by far more than the original cam provides. Replacing the original Rodeo cam with the 1000TVL is one of the first things one should do!

The 40 channel video transmitter comes in two flavors: a CE version with 25mW, as well as an FCC version with 200mW. The FCC version of the Rodeo is recognizable by a small white sticker at the bottom, lettered ‘TX5836’. But the 25mW version can also be ‘upgraded’ to 200mW by simply pressing the small button on the video transmitter for 30 seconds. If you press the button for 30 seconds and then quickly twice, the frequency band can be changed. The channel itself is set with three small jumpers (a table of frequencies and switch positions is found in the Rodeo’s manual).

Rodeo original camera compared with the Banggood 1000TVL:

Batteries

The Rodeo comes with Walkera 2S Lipo with 850mAh, which only weighs 47 grams. As usual, the original Walkera batteries bring the best performance from all tested Lipo’s so far. All experiments with SLS and other lipos resulted in lower flight times. Only the affordable 2S 850mAh from Hobbyking came quite near to the original Walkera batteries, which is surprising since the Hobbyking Lipo’s cost about only a third of the Walkera Lipo’s.

The batteries are connected to a JST plug on the quad, which is probably a bit critical, as it takes a little fiddling without the proper technique to loosen the plugs. I had no problems here, however. The advantage of the JST plug is that the battery could not be easily lost or disconnected during a flight or in case of a crash.

Receiver

The Rodeo comes with a Walkera receiver and is compatible with all Devo series remote controls. The binding went completely without problems. It is recommended to assign a fixed ID between the Rodeo and the transmitter.

Like all my Copter (also the non-Walkeras) I fly the Rodeo with my Devo 10, on which the Deviation firmware is installed.

If you are using another TX (FrSky Taranis etc.) you can also add a receiver of your choice. This is quite simple. Here’s how it works.

Flight Characteristics

In the last weeks, I enjoyed flying my KingKong 90GT very much. The Kong is a micro racer, while the slightly bigger Rodeo 110 already occupies the ‘mini’ class. Because of the lightweight mass, the KingKong flies like on rails – and also does the Rodeo – although you can feel the higher weight. The 5800KV brushless motors offer lots of power (in relation to their tiny form factor). I was totally surprised about the end speed the Rodeo offers, which is even more than it’s big brother, the F210. With the camera tilt all the way up, this quad is a bullet!

The Rodeo is easy to handle in mid-air. As with all my racers I flashed BetaFlight version 3.1.6 on it. I’ve borrowed the PIDs from nVentor ( see here ), but also the BetaFlight default PIDs should do very well here. I prefer very high rates to have an ultra-responsive stick handling, but this is a matter of taste.

Next page: Sink or swim – what’s our final impression on the Walkera Rodeo 110?

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Editor rating: 4.5 / 5




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