Rescue Hexacopter Project


Design - Prop Shield

A small quadcopter like the Phantom DJI flies with no prop shield, and rarely is it an issue. However, when you are flying a hexacopter with a total wingspan of over four feet, a prop shield is an necessity.

The prop shield will not guarantee that an individual or an object will be unharmed by the propellers, but it will minimize the risks of accidental contact with the blades. Because of the weight of the craft and power of the motors, any contact with an object or individual while in flight will result in serious injury.

Trying to create a shield that will be stiff enough to protect the propellers, light enough to minimize the weight of the craft, and can be broken down for storage was not a easy task. Some of the materials which we considered were balsa strips, kevlar, and carbon fiber.

We finally decided on 1 mm carbon fiber to be manufactured by our Composites class. The material will be made into a panel 30" x 30" and then cut into 1 1/2 in strips. The strips will be trimmed to 27.7 inches long (17 in x pi / 2 +1). Sets of two holes will be placed at .5 inches, 9.4 inches, 18.3 inches, and 27.2 inches.

Shield half

Two of the shield halves are joined together with two 4x5 mm screws and two 4 mm nuts to create one long strip. The remaining free ends are then joined together and secured with two more screws and nuts. The resulting circle is one of seven needed for the project.

Prop Circle

To this prop circle we will attach the remaining prop circles. Each prop circle will be fastened to three other prop circles (center, right, and left). When attaching them care will be taken to ensure that no connection has more than 3 layers of carbon fiber.

Prop Shield

The prop shield is attached to the body by 6 right-angle brackets attached to the top plate and the center prop circle.

Hexacopter Body with Shield Attached

This completes the structural design of our Hexacopter. As we add different components, there will be design changes for wire routing and tie downs.


Prop Shield Component Drawings
Part/Assembly PDF STEP
1 in Angle 1 in Angle.pdf 1 in Angle.stp
4x5 mm Screw 4x5 mm Screw.pdf 4x5 mm Screw.stp
Shield Half Shield Half.pdf Shield Half.stp
Shield Half - Flat Shield Half - Flat.pdf Shield Half - Flat.stp
Complete Model Complete Model.pdf Complete Model.stp