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143km in 6 days and dead. Pushed it too hard?

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by HacKiwi, Oct 9, 2015.

  1. HacKiwi

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    I'm on my 3rd P3P.. here's a story.

    I got my first P2V+ last year in May. It flew flawlessly for 8 months until I took it on a hike in the hills and it had a complete power loss falling out of the sky high up the side of an inaccessible valley. Could not recover it so I assume it was a complete power loss. Cue an insurance claim.

    My replacement P2V+ again flew perfectly all over NZ and came with to Palau and Yap - No problems at all. I sold it to upgrade to the P3P in May (I nabbed the first one in NZ). It flew perfectly until a recent trip to Fiji - trying to bring it down too close to some palm trees which blew into the P3 resulting in a 10m fall to concrete and lots of little pieces - cue travel insurance!

    P3 No. 2 lasted 6 days of flying but it was working hard. 8 hours and 143km in 32 flights (and around 7000 photos) doing aerial photos for infrastructure projects in Fiji. It was way out over the jungle when it started spinning and falling. Found it after hours of searching - trashed but still had the props on. I can only assume a motor or ESC failure. DJI have been sitting on the logs for 3 weeks now (apparently they were shut down for a holiday) but I am expecting a warranty replacement. It was only 16 days old when it dropped.

    P3 No. 3 now has 50km on it - 18 flights in 10 days. I'm taking it a little slower with this one.

    Any reason to suspect that you can work these birds too hard? I hope that I just got a bad one. What kind of life span can we realistically expect from the components?

    Cheers
     
  2. bobmyers

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    IMHO-- they need to flown like they are camera platforms and not pushed them to the power limits-- maximum distance and maximum flight times, maximum speed, and running batteries lower than 25% every flight. I have flown mine with back to back batteries for five batteries straight, but if that is done on hot days-- over 90F-- a lot of heat is produced in the battery, and device and cool down times need to be considered--.
    I have over 100 flights on mine as it was an original preorder that I got in May-- knock on wood-- no major issues, period. The only minor issues I have had was pilot error, which did not result in a crash.

    I know the day will come when something happens and I get my first crash--- hopefully the impact will be light. :D

    Wishing Better results for you, cheers :)
     
    MattyDread likes this.
  3. HacKiwi

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    Cheers. Normally I fly the odd bit of fun video for myself but work is keen on more and more aerial work. For photos i have to fly under 5m/s to get anything useful but i do get down to 20% on every flight. The most I ran was 6 batteries back to back in 80-86 F (up to 30C) heat. How long would you recommend for a cool-down in that kind of climate?
     
  4. Erroll

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    The battery will let you know. It won't start charging if it is too warm, and the LEDs will flash an error..
    In my experience if you can readily feel heat on the battery with your hand it is probably still too warm for a recharge.
     
    keepngoal likes this.
  5. Bryce

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    I've flown 8-10 batteries back to back, no problem 2.5 hours of continuance flight time. If you have crashed this much I'd look at the other common denominator that I could think of.
     
    Chris P Duck likes this.
  6. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

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    5 or 6 flights a day doesn't sound excessive. Looks like you were just unlucky with that one.
    The Phantom doesn't need or benefit from a "cool down" between flights.
    Keep those 4 fans on and it should be sweet.
     
    HacKiwi likes this.
  7. Dronason

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    Over 3 months with a P3P, about 300km, 90 flights. So for sure it can flight for more.
    Maximum was 3 batteries in a raw near sea with more than 30°C temperature. Battery after the flight was really very hot (can't touch them). You can check from your flight log at "HealthyDrones.com - Innovative flight data analysis that matters" what was the battery temperature during the flight.
    Maybe you can see if it was very high during flight, but as you get different type of failure, maybe you have just bad karma with drones.
     
  8. Wibble

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    Before each flight turn the motors by hand. If they all feel the same you will be ok. If anything feels too warm let it cool down.
    Batteries hate heat - if they are more than just warm to touch there is a problem.
     
  9. Bryce

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    Mine are hot to the touch every time... more than a hundred flights on many of them and no problems. Discharging will manifest in heat that is more than 'warm to the touch'. They won't burn me, but they are definitely more than warm. They all charge and dissipate normally and %'s are still good.
     
  10. Farmer

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    You hear about car makers testing their products leaving engines screaming on test benches for months on end.
    Driving the sheet out of them in the hottest and coldest most inhospitable places in the world......Pity DJI didnt do this then we could know what to expect out of a motor or other important parts......
    It could be the next big step to routinely replace that esc board or motor.......
    OR do we just go buy another. ..yep probably.
     
  11. MattyDread

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    Sounds like a cracking job, mate. Can you hook me up?;)
     
  12. Bryce

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    Difference is that people drive cars and can kill people... the same amount of testing cannot be expected from a toy that doesn't have life depending upon it.
     
  13. HacKiwi

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    Good news - DJI confirmed warranty swap out :)
    Must have been a dud.
     
    Farmer likes this.
  14. Farmer

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    1.I was referring to "quality control testing" of components not anything to do with car safety.
    2.It might be white and have a plastic shell but I would not call it a toy.IMHO.
    And thirdly maybe quality control testing isn't on DJI or their component suppliers list of *must do* because of the speed in which the drone industry is rapidly moving at.
     
  15. Bryce

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    Well, they certainly could follow this QI model you suggest, but I would imagine the product would be a magnitude more expensive.
     
  16. Farmer

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    Is it too much to ask for the manufacturer of the great motors, to tell us how many hours before we should replace them? (for example).
     
  17. Farmer

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    Hey cobber, did you buy it from the same place as your first one in CC?
     
  18. HacKiwi

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    Yip - through the dealer. Ferntech. I know the guys well.
     
  19. Farmer

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    Got mine there too.They were outstanding in keeping me in the loop.
     
    HacKiwi likes this.
  20. bighi

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    I just started flying an advanced that I received in the mail about a couple of weeks ago. It has the new motors. At the end of the flight there is substantially less heat on the motors. But the difference in battery temperature is drastic. I'm a flyer first, picture taker/video maker second. Hence, my flights are high and far which has a tendency to produce much more heat from the equipment. But on these new motors I'm seeing the same if not less heat than I saw on my vision pluses. In fact, after a full speed, only a couple of stops here and there, 120 meter high, 2 km on two or three direction flight, the battery is pretty much barely warm. It's just about ready to charge in a couple of minutes. Sometimes instantly which was never the case on my first advanced where the battery came out hot enough to need long wait times for cooling. Considering I retired my first phantom 3, pre summer delivery, due to too many cracks, I wonder if the substantial heat reduction with the new motors will have a positive effect in the stress crack department. I think there was a lot more to the motor change than just some little performance improvement. Along with thicker shell motor mount ribbing, X bracing on mine, DJI maybe saw all this heat as a potential for many problems and decided on a motor and mother board change since the ESCs are built in.
     
    #20 bighi, Oct 14, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015