Brushed Motor ESC / Testing Tool

by Oscar

With this 1S brushed motor ESC, you can run a brushed motor directly, and control the speed using PWM signal from a radio receiver. This is a great tool for testing motors of brushed quads and tiny whoops, as well as micro RC planes and boats.

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Further Reading: The Best Tiny Whoop

Where to Buy?

It’s easy to test brushless motors because they are driven by separate, dedicated ESC (electronic speed controller). Brushed motors are driven by transistors that are normally built into flight controllers, therefore testing brushed motors is not as straight-forward.

I found the equivalent for brushed motors when I was window-shopping at Hobbyking, so I had to buy one and see how it works.



You can probably just hook up the motor to a tiny whoop flight controller (or any other brushed quad FC), and control the motor in the motor’s tab in Betaflight Configurator.

But this “Brushed Motor ESC” is a very neat solution that is worth mentioning.


  • Weight: 0.4g no wires, 1.6g with wires
  • Dimensions: 11.5 x 8.6 x 4mm
  • Input Voltage: 2.6V – 5.5V
  • Low Voltage Cut Off: 2.75V
  • Max Continuous Current: 3A
  • Max Peak Current: 5A (3 seconds)

It has a voltage cut off feature that stops spinning the motor when voltage drops below 2.75V. There is no manual for this product, but i think it’s straight forward enough on how to connect and use it.

Connection and How-To-Use

There is no official manual, this is the best connection diagram I could find online.

Connect the signal input to a radio receiver (RX) with PWM channel (e.g. throttle).

The brushed motor ESC can be powered by an 1S LiPo (one cell), and the receiver gets power from the same LiPo battery too.

However if you have a 5V only RX, you’d have to power it with a separate 5V BEC. What I did here is leaving the positive wire (red) to the receiver disconnected, only connect the signal and ground wires. Then power the receiver using an external 5V BEC instead.

Testing it briefly shows it’s working as expected.


A very cool little gadget for thrust-testing, or to simply check if a motor’s working at all.

It’s also useful for little projects where you need to run a single brushed motor but a flight controller is simply too bulky and heavy. Like a micro RC plane or boat?

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1 comment

ANDREI MIRONOV 1st January 2019 - 5:17 pm

A filght controller is too bulky? Use your own transistor, that’s by far more viable option for “your own projects” :)