11+ Must-Have Tools to Build FPV Drone

RCHobby Lab’s Author: Daniel Henderson
Reviewed by Kristen Ward
Updated on
Reviewed by Kristen Ward

So you want to get into the exciting world of FPV (First Person View) drone racing and freestyle drone flying? Great choice! This fast-paced hobby is an absolute blast. Zip through bando spots with friends, compete in drone races, pull off cinematic drone footage – the possibilities are endless with FPV.

But before you can really dive in, you’ll need to get yourself set up with the right FPV gear and tools. As total beginners, it can be tricky trying to figure out exactly which tools and accessories you’ll need in your workshop as you start building, modifying and repairing your quads.

Not to worry – we’ve put together this handy guide to walk you through the core tools and supplies every FPV pilot should have on hand. Consider our shop your one-stop gear shop, specially curated with the needs of the FPV community in mind.

Let’s take a look at the key items you should add to your toolkit, starting first with the tools you’ll need, then moving on to must-have consumable parts and accessories that will serve you well out in the field.

FPV Tool Essentials

While complex builds will call for more specialized tools, you can build a fully-functional FPV quad with just a few key items:

Hex Drivers

Arguably the most important tools in your kit, hex drivers are essential for building and maintaining your quads. Hex screws are used extensively in mini quads, so you’ll need the right hex driver bits to remove and install them.

Most FPV builds use M2, M3 or M4 socket cap screws. The most common sizes you’ll need are:

  • 1.5mm
  • 2mm
  • 2.5mm

Ideally get a set with various sizes and bits so you have all your bases covered as you experiment with different frames and components.

Make sure to get proper screwdriver handles to go along with your hex bits too. A handle with swappable bits is really convenient since you can easily switch between the common hex sizes mentioned above.

Some popular options:

  • Witbot Hex Driver Kit
  • Tekpo Snap-On Handle with Hex Bits

Nut Drivers

In addition to hex drivers, you’ll also want some nut drivers suited for FPV use. These allow you to easily loosen and tighten the nylock nuts used to hold propellers in place.

  • 8mm nut driver – perfect size for mini quad prop nuts
  • 10mm nut driver – useful for cinewhoop and 3″ build prop nuts

A basic 8mm nut driver will be useful for many builds. But having both 8mm and 10mm handy ensures you have all standard mini quad prop nut sizes covered.

Soldering Iron

Unless you are going with an off-the-shelf pre-built BNF (Bind-N-Fly) quad, you’ll need solid soldering skills to get into FPV drones. Soldering motors to ESCs, installing RX units, wiring up custom analog FPV builds… it’s all part and parcel of building your own rig!

The key is to get a decent soldering station so that soldering complex builds is as frustration-free as possible. Here are some things to look for when choosing one:


Look for an iron in the 60W-100W power range. Lower powered irons won’t get hot enough when soldering components together causing weak joints. Most electronics work well with 60W but it’s nice to have the extra power when doing larger joints.

Temperature Control

The ability to control temperature is useful especially for more delicate components. Some quality stations allow you to digitally set your desired temperature.

Replaceable Tips

Quality replaceable tips that are built to last make your iron station more durable and portable. Most come with a few different style tips for different soldering applications.

ESD Safe Design

This isn’t 100% necessary, but solder stations with ESD-safe grounded enclosures can help prevent static discharge which might otherwise damage sensitive electronics.

Some good starter soldering station options:

  • YIHUA 939D+ Soldering Station (budget pick)
  • Hakko FX888D-23BY Digital Soldering Station (quality mid-range pick)
  • Weller WES51 Analog Soldering Station (versatile analog pick)

Soldering Accessories

To go along with your soldering iron station, here are some must-have accessories:

  • Solder – Use lead-free electronics grade solder only in either a 0.8mm or 1mm thickness. Good choices are 60/40 or 63/37 rosin core solder. Ensure what you have is meant for electronics specifically.
  • Tip Tinner and Cleaner – Essential for keeping the tip of your soldering iron clean and ready for use. A dirty solder tip won’t transfer heat well leading to weak joints.
  • Solder Sucker – Useful for removing solder to desolder joints and salvage components from old PCBs. Spring-loaded ones with silicone tips tend to work better than bulb ones.
  • Desoldering Braid – Also used to soak up solder, giving you another desoldering option. Great for getting into tight spaces.
  • Flux Pen – Flux makes solder flow more easily, helping when soldering wires or tinning pads on flight controllers. Liquid and gel flux work well.
  • Helping Hands Tool – Holds PCBs or wires in place with alligator clips while soldering. Leaves both hands free.

With these accessories along with a quality soldering station, you’ll be set to take on any soldering job when building or fixing your miniquads!

Wire Strippers

When making custom cables or trimming motor wires, having a proper wire stripper in your toolkit will save you lots of headaches. Look for ones that have holes/notches measured for common wire gauges used with mini quads (20 AWG to 12 AWG generally).

Self-adjusting automatic styles or simple manual ones will both get the job done. Just ensure they are designed to strip thinner stranded hobby wires without fraying or damaging the wires underneath.

Wire Cutters

Quality flush cutters are another must – perfect for cleanly trimming off zip tie ends, cutting motor wires to size or snipping off excess metal parts from frames.

Look for mini quad specific wire cutters that are designed for softer wire rather than heavy duty cutters built for thick steel wire or nails. This ensures a clean cut without damaging or pinching delicate signal wires.

Xuron and Hakko make excellent cutters purpose-built for precision electronics work and FPV needs.

Heat Gun

A heat gun has all sorts of uses when building FPV drones – heat shrink tubing motor wires, ESC signal wires, secure connections near carbon fiber frames, and more. Good for finishing off and insulating solder joints as well.

Any quality heat gun with variable temperature settings from around 100°C to 500°C will do the trick nicely. Look for models with LCD displays that allow accurate heat control. Having interchangeable nozzles is handy too.

Some recommendations:

  • Tacklife HGP73AC
  • Genesis GHG1500A
  • TENMARS TM-931


An important diagnostic tool, a digital multimeter (DMM) allows you to check voltages, continuity, resistances and more. Extremely useful when troubleshooting dead quad issues or double checking wiring connections.

There’s plenty of budget meters around $20 that will get the basic testing job done. But consider investing in a quality auto-ranging meter if you want something to last with increased accuracy, input protection and versatility.

We like these options depending on your budget:

  • INNOVA 3320 Auto-Ranging Multimeter (Budget)
  • Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter (Premium)

Metric Allen Key Set

A good set of allen keys / hex keys will come in very handy when building. They allow you to accurately tighten frame hardware and other components to spec.

Look for ball end design metric allen key sets that provide you with a full range covering sizes 0.9mm up to 10mm for maximum versatility. An allen key holder case helps keep things organized too.

Some options:

  • ORIA 60-Piece Ball End Allen Key Set
  • TEKTON Ball hex key set with storage case

Long Nose Pliers

Good quality long nose pliers serve well as a helping hand when soldering and building your quads. They allow you to hold and position wires or components while your other hand solders joints securely.


Like pliers, a set of good anti-static tweezers helps greatly with precise placement of tiny components under magnification. Curved tweezer tips really excel here. Having various styles and sizes helps.

Mini Screwdriver Set

A lot of FPV accessories use small Phillips or flat head fasteners – FPV cameras, video transmitters, BUZZER units etc. A small eyeglass repair kit or precision electronics screwdriver set ensures you can get in there.

Make sure yours comes with the two most common mini screwdriver sizes:

  • PH000 Phillips
  • 0.8mm Flat Head

FPV Quad Building Supplies

Now that we’ve covered the key tools you’ll need in your toolkit, let’s talk about important consumables used when building FPV drones:

Zip Ties

No miniquad build would be complete without zip ties to secure components and route wiring cleanly. Stock up on zip ties in a few common sizes like 100mm, 150mm and 200mm. Both 2.5mm-3mm thickness and 4.7mm-4.8mm thickness ties are handy.

Pro Tip: Get black zip ties – way lower profile than the bright white ones!

Heat Shrink Tubing

From securing ESCs to mounting RX antennas, versatile heat shrink tubing has a million uses in FPV builds. It helps protect components and achieve a clean professional build look. At a minimum have 2:1 ratio tubing in 2mm, 3mm and 5mm diameters on hand. Higher 4:1 ratio also helps with thicker gauge wires and connections. Have a mix of sizes/ratios available.

Tip: Get heat shrink in black primarily, then some other colors to help color code motor or battery leads.

Double Sided Tape

This is my secret weapon for securely mounting many on-board accessories. FPV cameras, receivers, current sensors etc – a small square of thick double sided tape can securely affix many components right where you need them. Get tape designed for foam core or foam mounting rather than lighter duty office tapes. 3M VHB tape is one of the best you can get.

Hook and Loop Tape

Hook and loop fastener, also referred to by the brand name Velcro, allows you to create removable mounts for accessories. This is most helpful for swappable things like batteries, receivers, FPV cameras etc. One side is the “hook” while the other side is the “loop” – attach them anywhere to create strong removable mounts. Get a range of widths like 4mm for batteries and 10mm+ for beefier mounts.

Electrical Tape

Basic electricians tape finds its way into most miniquad builds. The thin flexible insulating design helps protect and route wires. It also adds grip when wrapping battery leads. A must-have roll at all times!

Spare Shrink Wrap

It’s smart to keep various sizes and colors of spare heat shrink tubing in your parts box even if you already own complete multi-packs. Saving leftovers from past builds means you often don’t have to wait until your next tubing order arrives. Plus, having more size or color options to work with helps make wire protection and organization a bit easier.

Propeller Mix

It pays to have a decent stash of spare propellers lying around. You’ll crash eventually, so why wait weeks for replacements? Here are great value prop selections in various sizes to start out:

3-blade Mini Quad Props

  • Gemfan 5x3x3
  • Dalprop Cyclone T5045C
  • HQProp Durable 5040X3

2 Blade Cinewhoop Props

  • HQProp 2x3x3
  • Gemfan Hurricane 2x3x3

Mix it up and have various prop styles/sizes on hand even if you primarily fly one size for now. Expand your prop options as you add quads later on.

LiPo Batteries

Time to stock up on some batteries! When starting out, aim for 4S 1300-1500mah packs from quality brands. This offers a good compromise of power and flight time for beginners learning to fly FPV.

Stick to 65C-75C rated as a good starting point. Higher C ratings do technically offer better maximum current handing at the cost of decreased flight times generally.

For your first batteries, I would recommend these Lipo battery options from top manufacturers:

  • CNHL Black Series 1500mah 4S
  • TATTU FunFly 1550mah 4S
  • Lumineer Graphene 1550mah 4S
  • FOXEER Razer 1500mah 4S

Be mindful of battery specs like XT60, XT30, PH2.0 connectors if your drones use specific ones. You’ll want to match new packs accordingly.

Grab around 5 batteries to start and add more as needed over time. This offers good flexibility as some charge and you fly others.

Parallel Board

A parallel charging board is a must have accessory to safely charge multiple batteries at once. Quality boards have independent circuits for each battery as well as smart features like individual cell monitoring and auto cut-off when batteries are fully charged. Look at 6-12 battery capacity depending on how many you plan to use.

Some solid options we recommend based on your budget and needs:

  • ISDT Q8 Plus 300W Charger + Discharger
  • Hota D6 Pro Duo 400W AC Charger
  • Venom Pro Quad Battery Charger

There are lots more tools that will be helpful for particular builds or repairs, but this list represents what we consider the “core essentials” to have on hand when newly getting started with FPV quads.

Things like mini drill bits, threadlock, loctite, crimping tools, button head wrenches, additional specialty pliers etc are all nice to have – but not absolutely necessary right away. Build up your toolkit over time as your experience grows.

The tools and accessories outlined above form a strong starter kit allowing you to get flying and have fun with this amazing hobby! You’ll be equipped to build, repair, modify and maintain your fleet. We hope this guide gives you directional confidence as you take your first steps towards epic FPV adventures!

Let us know if you have any other must-have tool or FPV gear recommendations in the comments!

Must-Have FPV Gear

Now that you’re set up with all the right tools and consumable parts for building and maintaining your drones, let’s talk about some must-have FPV gear you’ll want to fly with.

FPV Goggles

The most important piece of gear allowing you to actually see and fly from your drone’s perspective. Quality FPV goggles are an investment, but worth it. Look for goggles offering features like:

  • A built-in diversity receiver – allows switching between multiple feeds
  • Crisp image with high resolution display/optics
  • Interchangeable patch antennas – better reception
  • DVR so you can record footage as you fly
  • Module bay for adding different receiver types

Some top goggle recommendations:

  • Skyzone SKY04X
  • Fat Shark HDO2
  • Orqa FPV.One
  • DJI Avata FPV Goggles

There are also compact “box style” goggles if you prefer a more low profile and lightweight option.

FPV Controller

To manually fly and control your drones, a dedicated RC controller tuned for FPV is essential. Many options exist, but most FPV pilots prefer controllers that are:

  • Comfortable during long sessions
  • Highly configurable/programmable
  • Support multi-protocol connectivity
  • Easy to grip and maneuver

Some top transmitters include:

  • Radiomaster TX16S
  • FrSky Taranis QX7
  • Jumper T-Pro
  • Spektrum DX5 Pro

If just starting out, the BetaFPV LiteRadio 3 is also a great low-cost option.

LiPo Charger

A proper LiPo battery balance charger helps safely charge your LiPo packs and maximize their lifespan. Look for key features like:

  • Balance charging – extends cell life
  • Storage charging
  • Discharging/cell balancing
  • LCD displays voltage/capacity
  • High charge current rating

Quality budget chargers like the Hota D6, ISDT Q6, and SkyRC Q200 all fit the bill nicely. Or go premium with chargers like the Hitec X2.

LiPo Voltage Checker

This handy accessory allows you to safely check the voltage of LiPo battery packs without needing to plug them into a charger first. Extremely useful pre-flight or when receiving used batteries to verify cell voltages.

There are inexpensive inline checker options from Lumintek, Realacc, and others that work great.

Smoke Stopper

A smoke stopper provides an added layer of protection between your LiPos and flight controller/ESCs by limiting current in case of direct shorts or faulty power connections. Highly recommended when bench testing builds before first flight. Various budget options available.

Battery Straps

Good heavy duty battery straps help securely lock each LiPo pack onto your mini quads, keeping them firmly in place even on hard crashes. Have multiple sizes/materials handy for different baseplate shapes.

Parallel Charge Board

Allows simultaneously charging multiple LiPo packs safely. Scalable solution as your collection grows. Independent balance circuits protect each battery. We previously covered recommendations earlier in this article.

Battery Storage Bag

Special fireproof lipo bags provide a safe spot to charge your batteries and also safely store them long term. Choose bags that fit your expected battery collection size. Some even have integrated charging ports.

Soldering Gear

Ensure you have quality soldering tools and accessories as covered earlier. Used regularly for wiring ESCs, flight controllers etc.

That wraps up some of the key FPV flying gear you’ll want alongside your actual mini quads. Let us know your favorite must-have gear in the comments!

Get Equipped, Then Get Flying!

And that wraps up our guide on must-have tools, consumables, and accessories to help equip your adventures in FPV!

We covered all the basics – from hex drivers to propellers to LiPo chargers and more. Consider it your starter shopping list as you prepare to build your first FPV drones, keep them flying, and grow your skills in this exciting hobby.

Remember, you don’t need to run out and buy all this at once if you are just dipping your toes in. But come back to this handy reference article as you expand your workshop and FPV capabilities over time.

The world of first-person-view drone flight awaits…so get your tools in order and let the fun begin! Clear skies and happy flying!

Please drop any additional FPV gear recommendations in the comments. And don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any other questions getting started!

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Written By Daniel Henderson

My name is Daniel Henderson and I'm an avid FPV pilot and videographer. I've been flying quadcopters for over 5 years and have tried just about every drone and FPV product on the market. When not flying quads, you can find me mountain biking, snowboarding, or planning my next travel adventure.

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