Finding the Best Drone Frame in [2023]

The frame of your drone is what holds the entire unit together and without it, you won’t be able to take to the skies.

Ready-to-fly drones come assembled so if you want to build your own drone, the first thing you’ll need is a frame.

It doesn’t matter if it’s made of Carbon, Wood Metal, Plastic or Fiberglass.

However, there is no one frame that works for every situation.

There are quite a few things you need to consider before choosing a frame. 

Today, we’ll be taking a look at all you need to know when looking for the right frame as well as making a few recommendations.

Drone

Features

Price

230mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 Inch Carbon Fiber Quadcopter...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 5.2 x 5.2 x 1.4 inches
  • Weight: 4.3 ounces
Readytosky® 220mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 inch Carbon...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber & Aluminium
  • Dimensions: 8.66 x 8.66 x 0.79 inches
  • Weight: 4.2 ounces
FPVKing Carbon Fiber 4inch 175mm with 3mm Arms X-type frame...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 9 x 3.6 x 1.4 inches
  • Weight: 8 ounces
TCMMRC Freestyle Drone Frame OF220 5 Inch 3K Carbon Fiber...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 14.02 x 7.68 x 1.02 inches
  • Weight: 5.6 ounces
FPVKing XL5 232mm FPV Frame Carbon Fiber Freestyle...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 8.9 x 8.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Weight: 6.4 ounces
iFlight Titan XL5 HD 250mm FPV Freestyle Frame 6mm Arms,TPU...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 5.31 x 5.31 x 1.38 inches
  • Weight: 12 ounces

Best racing drone frames

FPVDrone 230mm FPV Racing Drone Frame

230mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 Inch Carbon Fiber Quadcopter...

  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 5.2 x 5.2 x 1.4 inches
  • Weight: 4.3 ounces

The FPVDrone 230mm Racing Frame is made from durable 3K Pure Carbon Fiber.

It is lightweight weighing just 4.3 ounces and features 4mmm removable arms.

This 230mm frame has more than enough space for the camera, battery and any other additions you may want to make. 

While the frame is designed primarily for racing,  it can support a freestyle device as well. 

Racing can see your drone going at top speeds but no need to worry as this carbon fiber frame is sturdy enough to survive a few crashes.

Get your hands on this racing quadcopter frame if you’re looking for the perfect racing drone.

230mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 Inch Carbon Fiber Quadcopter…
  • Made of 3K Pure Carbon Fiber Plates,lightweight,but very strong.
  • Featuring a solid 4mm removable arms, guaranteeing the flying ability of the Quadcopter.
  • Plenty of space to easily fit your FPV and reduce the wring messing.
  • Suitable for competition and free style fly,can be easily assembled.
  • Made of high quality carbon fiber,designed to sustain crash.

Readytosky® 220mm FPV Racing Drone Frame

Readytosky® 220mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 inch Carbon...

  • Material: Carbon Fiber & Aluminium
  • Dimensions: 8.66 x 8.66 x 0.79 inches
  • Weight: 4.2 ounces

The Readytosky 220mm racing drone frame is a well-designed Carbon Fiber and Aluminium unit.

The innovative design is unlike other models and positions the battery near the drone’s center of gravity.

This helps to balance everything and helps maintain a stable flight.

The aluminum structure at the front of the frame provides the most protection and versatility when mounting a camera.

One of the best features of this FPV racing frame is the recessed top plate.

This will allow the camera cage to protect your battery in case you have an upside-down crash.

The frame also has a VTX mount on the back

Assembly is a breeze and the included battery strap ensures that everything remains securely in place during flight.

Readytosky® 220mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 inch Carbon…
  • ★Feature of the recessed top-plate is that the camera cage will be more likely to protect your…
  • ★The 4mm thick, 6061 aluminum structure on the front of this frame providing the most protection…
  • ★Better VTX mounting solutions.
  • ★Full 3K Carbon Fiber airframe featuring a solid 4mm fpv frame arms.
  • ★Light, easy to assemble.

FPVKing Carbon Fiber 4inch 175mm frame

FPVKing Carbon Fiber 4inch 175mm with 3mm Arms X-type frame...

  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 9 x 3.6 x 1.4 inches
  • Weight: 8 ounces

The FPVKing frame is a sturdy 3K Carbon Fiber frame if you need something small, lightweight and compact.

The True-X motor layout features 4mm thick arms, a unibody, strong-arm supports and a few other components.

This makes it easier to build and get you into the sky sooner rather than later.

If flying long distances is your thing, then this drone frame is ideal

It can be used for both racing and freestyle but the X design helps to reduce resistance for more control when racing.

This drone frame is easy to assemble and comes with 4 landing gear pads and a battery strap.

FPVKing Carbon Fiber 4inch 175mm with 3mm Arms X-type frame…
  • ✈ Material: frame made of strong carbon fiber, resistant to crash,crisp clean cutting, no sharp…
  • ✈ X Structure: allow for more uniform flip and roll rates and super steady flight performance
  • ✈ Plenty of space to easily fit your FPV and reduce the wring messing
  • ✈ Suitable for both beginners and senior players,can be easily assembled
  • ✈ If this is what you need, don’t hesitate to choose it ,Any help if you need, please feel free…

Best freestyle quadcopter frames

TCMMRC Freestyle Drone Frame OF220

TCMMRC Freestyle Drone Frame OF220 5 Inch 3K Carbon Fiber...

  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 14.02 x 7.68 x 1.02 inches
  • Weight: 5.6 ounces

The TCMMRC freestyle carbon fiber drone frame features a hybrid-X fuselage design.

If speed is your passion, then you need this high-quality frame.

The frame’s stable structure will ensure to keep everything together while you zoom away at high speeds during freestyle flights.

The narrow 5mm arms allow for more wind resistance while the rear end of each arm is designed with Motor Crash Protection.

The side panel comes equipped with a mounting hole for a 19mm micro camera which is protected from impact due to the flexible material.

This frame kit comes with the frame itself, 1 3D Printed Tail and Head, screws, EVA landing gear pads and 2 battery straps.

TCMMRC Freestyle Drone Frame OF220 5 Inch 3K Carbon Fiber…
  • Applicable to 5-inch propeller, flight control hole position applicable to m3 * 20 * 20MM / 30.5 *…
  • The side panel provides the mounting hole for the 19mm (micro) camera, and the print is placed under…
  • The printout can also provide the buffer force of fuselage impact for the flexible material;
  • The rear part is fixed with the print as the image transmission antenna, and the hybrid-x fuselage…

FPVKing XL5 232mm FPV Freestyle Frame

FPVKing XL5 232mm FPV Frame Carbon Fiber Freestyle...

  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 8.9 x 8.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Weight: 6.4 ounces

The FPVKIng XL5 232mm frame is suitable for freestyle flying and taking part in competitions.

The X shape design helps increase flight speeds and helps to make flights more nimble which is awesome if you are competing.

The top-mounted battery design allows for an optimal center of gravity which can lead to more stable flights.

This frame includes side panels that protect your camera lens well due to their sturdy and durable 3K carbon fiber construction.

It includes replaceable 4mm arms and plates.

Overall, the FPVKing XL5 32 mm frame is sturdy, lightweight and can put you ahead of your competition when freestyle flying.

FPVKing XL5 232mm FPV Frame Carbon Fiber Freestyle…
  • ✈ X shape design helps to increase the computational efficiency of the flight control and makes…
  • ✈ Top mounted battery for optimal CG.
  • ✈ Equipped with side panels, it can protect the camera lens well.
  • ✈ Made of imported 3K pure carbon fiber, make the frame lightweight but sturdy enough.
  • ✈ Suitable for competition and freestyle fly, can be easily assembled.

iFlight Titan XL5 HD 250mm FPV Freestyle Frame

iFlight Titan XL5 HD 250mm FPV Freestyle Frame 6mm Arms,TPU...

  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 5.31 x 5.31 x 1.38 inches
  • Weight: 12 ounces

Freestyle flying puts your drone at higher risk for a crash.

This is why you need a frame that protects your unit fully.

The iFlight Titan XL 250mm frame provides protection like no other on the market.

It features a true-X configuration with 360 degrees TPU protection.

The X-geometry frame gives you the best performance and better weight distribution which are two important factors for freestyle.

This frame comes with TPU guards for the arms and antenna mounts to provide optimal protection.

There’s even a TPU bracket mount for the FPV camera.

For ultimate protection, make the iFlight Titan XL 250mm frame your first choice.

iFlight Titan XL5 HD 250mm FPV Freestyle Frame 6mm Arms,TPU…
  • -iFlight titan xl5 frame,popular true-x configuration
  • -6mm arm design for more durability
  • -360° tpu protection,tpu guard for arms and antenna mounts
  • -with tpu bracket mount for fpv air unit
  • -Fits both 30.5×30.5 and 20×20 fpv flight stacks 

FPV Freestyle vs. Racing drone frames

racing drone frames before takeoff

Drone racing involves completing an obstacle racecourse in the fastest possible time.

On the other hand, freestyle racing involves a lot more than that.

Pilots need to navigate tight corners, under trees, around obstacles, through small openings while performing tricks.

Freestylers must do all this and avoid hitting the ground or crashing into any obstacles.

Some people may use freestyle frames for racing while some freestylers may use racing frames. 

There is no general rule that separates the two. 

However, freestyle frames tend to be a lot stronger and have more space than racing frames. 

On the other hand, racing frames are much lighter so as to help with speed. 

Racing drone frames are best if you want speed and more control over your drone.

Freestyle frames are better suited for flow and Punch. 

if you’re just starting out you should probably try a freestyle frame since they are a whole lot easier to work on.

They are also durable so they’ll survive crashes and as a newbie, you will crash a few times before you get a hang of things.

How to choose the best drone frame for you

Your drone frame holds all the components of your drone together and protects these components inside.

you’ll find that protecting the components may come secondary in some racing drones to improve performance. 

Aerodynamics usually plays a big role in the design of racing drone frames. 

The main focus here is on reducing drag and limiting the effect of the arms on the thrust from the propeller. 

Meanwhile, freestyle frames are usually heavier compared to racing frames and can be crashed with a limited chance of a total write-off. 

So how do you know if you need a freestyle or a racing drone frame? 

Here are a few factors you need to consider to find the best frame for you.

Material

The majority of the drone racing or freestyle frames that you’ll find on the market are constructed from carbon fiber. 

 This is because carbon fiber is lightweight, strong and durable. 

However, it can be a bit pricey but it is well worth the price due to its versatility and durability. 

Other frames that you can find are made from some form of rigid plastic that may be able to withstand a few crashes without breaking. 

However, the problem with these plastic frames is the weight and working area. 

You will also find that some frames may have aluminum or titanium parts to them. 

This can increase the strength of your frame but it may come at a higher cost and add extra weight to your frame. 

Aside from the frame material you will need to consider what the hardware like bolts and screws are made out of. 

Steel and titanium are usually used for screws and bolts. 

Steel is softer and cheaper while titanium is the exact opposite. 

Construction 

Frames have three main parts. 

The first is the top place which is normally thinner and often has holes for cable ties and straps. 

Some people may also attach GoPro mounts using top plate screws or Velcro straps on the top plate as well. 

The second is the bottom plate which is the thickest part of the frame. 

It is designed to absorb most of the impact from a crash and usually has the hole to fit all your electronics. 

The last is the arms. 

In some instances, the arm may or may not be a part of the bottom plate. 

They are either part of the frame or can be removed.  

The arms of the drone hold the motors and sometimes the ESC’s 

Frame Size 

Frames are measured by the diagonal distance between motors and that dictates the size of the props you can use. 

Frames are measured in millimeters and the propellers are usually in inches. 

The most common frame is around 210mm which is referred to as a 5-inch frame.

This frame size is used for both freestyle and racing and is the best compromise between power, weight and responsiveness.

This is because the 210mm frame allows you to run 5-inch props which give you great power and efficacy.

This frame dominates the freestyle scene with a few outliers who use 6-inch frames.

As you go up in the size of the frame, the wind resistance plays a crucial role here too. 

3 inch(150mm) frames are extremely fast but can get blown around.

They also have shorter flight times because they carry smaller batteries to compensate for the lack of thrust.

Frame shape/Arm layout

The shape of the frame is dictated by the layout of its arms.

We’ll take a look at 4 of the main arm setups.

H

As the name suggests, this frame looks like an H on its side. 

The Arms stick out from the body and lead to a longer body section to stop the blades from touching.

They are quite bulky and motor position is less than ideal for a good moment of inertia.

True X

This frame is shaped like an X and the distance between all the motors is equal. 

It allows for the most balanced performance since each motor operates equally.

Hybrid X

This frame is a combination of the H and X frames.

You get the long body of the H which is good for space and optimal arm placement on the X frame.

Stretched X

The main objective of this type of frame is to move the front and rear propellers away from each other. 

It is designed to reduce the effect the front and rear propellers have on each other to improve high-speed handling.

Square

This frame is like an enclosed X Frame. 

It’s like an X Frame inside of a square.

The main advantage of this type of frame is strength. 

Battery Location

The location and weight of the drone battery take up a large proportion of the craft. 

This is why the placement is so important and the ultimate aim is to get it as close to the center of gravity as possible. 

You have two options on most frames. 

The battery can be placed on top or underneath. 

Most freestyle frames will have the batteries placed on top to protect it in most crashes. 

Racing frames will mostly have bottom-mounted batteries. 

This is good for cornering since the weight is at the bottom of the frame. 

Other considerations

FPV camera, tilt angle, protection and size 

FPV cameras are what you used to see so where you place it is important.

You need a location where you can get a clean line of sight. 

However, it is quite common to have some of the propellers in view especially if you use a stretched X frame. 

Just make sure that they are not blocking most of your view. 

Another thing you’ll need is to have a wide range of angles. 

if the angle is too low you will end up looking at the ground more often than where you’re going. 

if it’s too high you’ll end up going too fast. 

A camera angle of 25 degrees to 30 degrees is a good place to start. 

Aside from angle, you may want protection for your FPV camera. 

Some pilots hang the camera out the front with no protection.

This gives them the best views and extreme angles 

However, this puts the camera at a much higher risk of being damaged or destroyed in a crash. 

Meanwhile, other pilots prefer to keep their camera a bit more protected even though it limits the angles. 

HD camera option 

Most freestyle frames will either have a built-in GoPro or other HD camera mount or a 3D printed mount. 

You can use these cameras for recording high-resolution footage. 

Spare Parts

Be sure to choose frames where you have easy access to spare parts.

This can get up back up in the air faster if something breaks and needs to be replaced.

Conclusion

racing quadcopter frame assembled

Drones frames are one of the most important components in a drone.

It holds everything together and protects them as well.

Follow our guidelines on how to choose a drone frame and check out the reviews as well.

If you’re interested, read our build your own drone and fpv drone kit posts for additional help.

Drone

Features

Price

230mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 Inch Carbon Fiber Quadcopter...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 5.2 x 5.2 x 1.4 inches
  • Weight: 4.3 ounces
Readytosky® 220mm FPV Racing Drone Frame 5 inch Carbon...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber & Aluminium
  • Dimensions: 8.66 x 8.66 x 0.79 inches
  • Weight: 4.2 ounces
FPVKing Carbon Fiber 4inch 175mm with 3mm Arms X-type frame...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 9 x 3.6 x 1.4 inches
  • Weight: 8 ounces
TCMMRC Freestyle Drone Frame OF220 5 Inch 3K Carbon Fiber...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 14.02 x 7.68 x 1.02 inches
  • Weight: 5.6 ounces
FPVKing XL5 232mm FPV Frame Carbon Fiber Freestyle...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 8.9 x 8.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Weight: 6.4 ounces
iFlight Titan XL5 HD 250mm FPV Freestyle Frame 6mm Arms,TPU...
  • Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Dimensions: 5.31 x 5.31 x 1.38 inches
  • Weight: 12 ounces

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