A Conversation About Drones: To Buy or Build?

Posted by & filed under Company News, Insurance News.

As we are getting ready to close out 2014, personal drones have become a hot topic all year. From everyday users uploading exciting aerial video, to industries planning on implementing drones in the near future, the way people are viewing these miniature aircraft is rapidly changing.

As the Insurance industry is already planning its own drone strategy, we felt it would be important to read up and find out about drones and how they will impact our future. So for the next few weeks we will be publishing a few short articles about drones.

Drones: To Buy or Build?

For those wanting to jump into the world of piloting a drone they can take two paths: buy a pre-made drone, or build their own from scratch.

Just like any other item sold in the market, drones are sold ready to fly. Some may require a few pieces to be put into place, however, most of the hard work is already taken care of, such as matching components or programing the drone itself.

Components can be purchased separately so builders can create something custom built to their own needs. Some parts for building a drone are solderless, and feature connectors to swap out parts to upgrade quickly; others may require some soldering. There are nearly limitless options to building a drone.

A few things to consider when building your own drone may be:

  • Drone Use: Will you be taking video of property, collecting aerial data, or flying for fun?
  • Maximum Weight: The weight will affect the size of motors, fans, and batteries you will need.
  • Attachments: If you plan on mounting a camera to your drone, then be sure to add that into your total weight.
  • Power: Having the right battery is important for your drone and can be the difference between flying or being grounded. Also verify that your power requirements, such as Ohms and Amps, are properly calculated, matched, and met.
  • Programing: Now that you have your hardware, you may need to program the software so your drone can actually fly. There are many tutorials to help you program your drone and get it in the air.
  • Practice: Flying a remote controlled drone is not as easy as it sounds and will take some practice. Expect there to be some crash landings.