Calibrate ESC smoked motor and ESC


OK. In my first ESC calibration both the motor and ESC smoked. Motor is RS 2201 920kV, ESC is SIMONK30A - LIPO 2 - 4s, Battery is LIPO 3S 11.1V. The receiver (FS-IA6B was bound to a Radiomaster 16S transmitter. I had the ESC connected to CH3. The throttle on the transmitter was in the full on position when I plugged the battery in. I did not get the three beeps as noted in the lesson the motor came on full and smoke came out of both the motor and the ESC. The motor may be recoverable but the ESC appears to be toast. What did I do wrong???


Hi there Kent! Sorry to hear about the infamous magic smoke.

In my experience this can be due to a few reasons.

First thing I would check is if there are any obvious shorts. The ESC red and black wire soldering onto the PDB and also if any bullet connectors were touching.

Next thing I would make sure that you didn’t have a screw too far into the motor that you use to mount it to the frame. If it touches the coils in the motor from the bottom that could cause eddy currents and smoking.

It also can’t be ruled out that the ESC / motor were just shipped as defective from the manufacturer. This is the unfortunate con to the pro of very cheap drone parts.

If you are feeling brave, you could try that motor on a different ESC to see if the issue was the motor or the ESC.

However, the alternate/safe route would to invest in a smoke stopper upon first powering your drone. These little devices are cheap and will cut power from the drone electronics if there is a short anywhere. Then if you aren’t getting power you know you need to look for a short somewhere on the drone. You can get those little devices on amazon, and they fit between the battery and the power module. I plan to add this device to the parts list and add a video about them to the curriculum very soon.

Sorry for your troubles, consider yourself initiated into the drone world :wink:


I was a little worried that it might be a battery thing. But the Readytosky site rated the motor at 12V (above the battery voltage). So I put a couple of washers under the screw heads and then tried the individual calibration on the second motor. (ESC leads were all insulated) All went well (no smoke and joystick calibrated correctly). So I tried the other two motors (without any washers on motor mount) and everything went well (no smoke and joystick calibrated correctly. So I believe that I have one bad motor in the batch (and now one bad ESC also). I believe the motor was the issue because I saw smoke come from the motor first and then the ESC overheated. But I have ordered some more motors and ESCs and will continue when I receive the equipment. It will give me some spare ESCs and motors fro issues later down the road (spare parts).


Just another small issue with the motors. Any 1045 props will not work with the reaadytosky 2212 920kV motors the propellors must be " * Compatible with DJI-style motors’ shafts (keyed shaft with two flats)" The ones that do not have the keyed shaft flats will not allow the motor nut to attach.


Glad to hear the other motors/ESCs are alright. Your diagnosis of the motor being the root cause sounds right to me.

I look forward to your update of 4 functioning motors and ESCs! Also good to note on the 1045 readytosky motor compatibility requirement. I deal a lot with the EMAX 920 KV motors that do not have this keyed shaft, so good to be aware of that. Thanks!