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How Drone Motors Work



Motors are devices that convert any source of energy into Mechanical Energy. As the flight of drones depends on the rotation of propellers, so motors are a vital instrument in the design of a Drone. In most cases, the commercial drones convert Electrical Energy to Mechanical Energy.

Types of Motor used in Drones

Generally, there are two types of motors are being used in Drones.  They are Brushed or Dc coreless motors and the Brushless.

Drone Motors – Brushless

In most cases, you’ll find these motors inside photography multi-rotors. Such as DJI Phantom series, Yuneec Q500 series, 3DR Solo and Traxxas Aton, etc. Also, these motors are used in 250mm kit quad-copters that are racing multi-rotor.

Regarding their competition in size, they are stout and short thought the appearance of motors are subject to the manufactures and might vary for different brands. The Drones are made of Brushless Motors, typically mounted the blades or propellers directly to the Motor’s Shafts.

Brushless Motors – Advantages

In general, the Brushless motors are expensive rather than a Coreless Brushed motors. Moreover, Brushless motors have a great lifespan with proper maintenance. On the same note, it can perform for a long timeframe without any rest because it has no core. So, no problems are faced such as overheating damage. Note that heating sometimes reduces the potential of brushless motors used in Drones. But as soon it cools down the performance revert to normal.

Brushless Motors – Disadvantages

The first disadvantage of Brushless Motor is their expensive price. Additionally, the motors have some expensive components too such as ECS means Electronic Speed Controllers. As these motors generate high torque so it is dangerous and should be used carefully.

Brushless Motors – Hacks

In most cases, the Brushless motors ensure more lifespan as the shafts remain the same for a long time and not misaligned due to crush. But the Drones use cheap motors might result in misalignment in the shaft within a short period. If you maintain your Drone on a regular basis, for example, lubricating the shaft, it’ll surely last for a longer time. Also try to keep the Drone clean from Dust, dirt, sand, or other small particles might enter inside the motor during flight. In short, keep your drone for best performance and longevity.

Drone Motors – Brushed Coreless motors.

Except for Drones, the batteries are commonly used inside the toy’s multi-rotors. For example, Blade Nano QX, UDI 818A, and Syma X5, etc. Furthermore, Parrot AR Drones also used coreless motors to propel. Look wise the Motor is like a spraypaint can – tall, shiny, and silver, etc. Though again it is subject to manufacture and may vary in size and shape. The coreless motors transfer the power through the gear shifting, and typically it’s bigger than your palm size.

Drone Motors – Advantages

These coreless motors are very cheap to manufacture, Other features such as easy wring, lightweight and compact size makes it a great choice regarding for budget Drones. Safe for using inside toys as the motor generates less power. Best choice for kids uses as less risk for any type of wound or cut.

Drone Motors – Disadvantages

Regarding its competition Brushless motor, the motor has a shorter lifespan. Generally, these motors burn out within 0-6 hours of their total performance time. These motors are usually used inside the toy Drones. Moreover, these motors are less powerful than it’s competition Brushless motors for the same reason it was safe for kids and called as toy motors.

Brushed Motors – Hacks

There are few common tricks to follow to use Brushed motor a few longer than their actual lifespan. In the first few flights, it’s better to run the Drone on a low throttle to extend motor’s lifetime. Make sure each flight is shorter than the 6 minutes timeframe. Because heating is a major problem for Brushed coreless DC motors and overheating damage is a common case problem faced by the users.

So, give your Drone rest to cool down after every 6 minutes flight time. Either it may cost the motor itself.

So, if you’re budget is bit low, and you’re just planning to buy coreless DC motors for your Drone. Then at least choose the multi-rotor that comes with connectors and wires. In that case, it’ll become easy for you to replace the motors. For example, Syma X8, Tarantula X8, and Blade Inductrix, etc. are the few drones come with connectors. AR Drone comes with stylish connectors and plugs though they ’re a bit expensive.

Drone Batteries – Size

The size of the battery will determine your flight total flight time of the Drone. Though a powerful battery can increase the total flight time of a Drone but also they can reduce the torque with excess weight. As a result, we need to maintain a ratio between the flight time and weight of the Drone. To maintain this ratio the size of the Motor plays a significant role. Furthermore, the size also depends on the battery cabinet of the Drone and the type. Also before buying a battery for the Drone Camera see the specification sheet comes with the Drone itself.


Cell Count also called as Battery Voltage is a significant aspect before investing on Drone. Higher voltage of motor helps your drone to perform for a long time. But it also increases the overall weight of the Drone.  

Not only that you also consider the specification sheet before purchasing the battery for the Drone because many manufacturers are very specific about the current & voltage ratings of the Drone.

Rate of Discharge

Likewise the Voltage the Discharge rate also called as C rating is an important aspect for Motor’s longevity. C denotes the discharge rate of the maximum current without damaging itself so if a seller is offering you two batteries 45C and 65C models. You always need to pick the 65C battery because it can handle more high discharging than 45C models.

According to the Drone experts they always prefer to buy the batteries upon their Discharge rating or C., But again the size will increase the weight and reduce the total flight time. So, pick the battery by the motor’s specification sheet and the maximum current rating.


Max Current Draw = Capacity of the Battery X Rate of Discharge

How to pick the Battery Capacity?

Simply highest capacity provides more flight time. But if you’re not an expert follow the specification sheet and consider size, power rating, and the weight your Drone can lift at maximum. Also, make sure that the battery specifications and ratings are correct as claimed by the manufacturer.


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