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4-time flyaway victim tries again....

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by joet, Aug 15, 2016.

  1. joet

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    Greetings, from Tampa, FL!

    I'm Joe, the unluckiest drone guy in the world (okay, perhaps I exaggerate). I've been fascinated with drones for years, but have been reasonably unlucky. I'll share my sob story quickly, and then hopefully can stay positive from this point on.

    Short version: Bought a Parrot AR.Drone (v1). One fine day, while hovering 50' or so up, it just... Flew off. $300 gone.

    Some months later, I got one as a present. I was flying it at the same park, and the exact same thing happened... Just took off.

    Perhaps a year later, I finally decided to get another... Yes, I'm stubborn... And the first day, IT FLEW AWAY TOO. I was "ready" for it, and as it accelerated off, I tried to force it to land... Shut off the motors.. Use the Force and force it to ground.. Nothing worked. It just took off and was gone. I had my name and phone number written on the shell, but never heard from anyone. That's $900 in drones gone, and I was so mad that I swore off of drones entirely. I heard stories about RTH and other features on the Phantom series, but there was no way I was going to spend $1000+ on another drone and lose both it AND my GoPro (at the time, the GoPro-carrying models were out).

    One day at Target, I saw an $80 drone with an "HD" camera. Ok, I can afford to lose $80.... In short order, I did. A gust of wind took it over some trees and that was all she wrote.

    That's where the story would have ended, had there not been horrible traffic the other day. I had landed close enough to rush hour after a business trip and decided to wait out the traffic at the local mall... And Brookstone had the P3 4K on sale. They even matched the Amazon price of $600.. It seemed from a quick read of reviews that there *might* be enough flyaway protection from both a feature and customer support prospective.. So I bit. Of course, I tested RTH immediately, and despite the panic when it shot up to the RTH height (I was just waiting for a zippy maneuver to the nearby woods), but was pleased to see that it came right back and landed harmlessly.

    So after a weekend of test flights, Youtube-watching, website reading, FAA registration, airport finding (you seemingly can't put two feet on the ground anywhere within a 3-hour drive without having an airport or 4 to notify...) and manual studying, I feel reasonably assured that the thing is going to do its best to ensure that it remains with me.. And so, I join you on this journey, with eyes wide open, and a 400' tether tying the P3 to my waist... Just kidding. Kinda.

    I'm looking forward to learning from you veterans. Thanks for having me.


    Joe
     
  2. neven

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    TheFPVdrone likes this.
  3. Procharged97

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    Welcome Joe! ! Sorry to hear about your bad past experiences. Hopefully this one stays with you for a long time!! Be sure to read the manual over and always start on a fully charged battery make sure you do all the calibrations, home point has been recorded and never take off before you get the green safe to fly! If all those are good you should be flying for many moons to come! Have fun and fly safe!

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G730A using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
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  4. captainmilehigh

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    Welcome to the PhantomPilots Forum Joe. Hope you have better luck with your Phantom than the other wayward birds. You mentioned a 400' foot tether. Classic idea! But, you may want to consider a Tracker, like a Trackimo or Marco Polo for your newest investment. There are many out there, and all are great in tracking down a lost drone. Happy Flying!


    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
     
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  5. younggun84

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    The key to keeping a phantom is knowing what causes them to fly away, and it's usually due to operator error of some sort.

    I read a LOT on here, and always go to the "My Phantom just left/fell/died/became possessed" threads. Not because I get glee from the misery of others, but because I can see their mistake and not repeat it.

    Stay away from metal on compass calibration and take off, always have a good (full) battery, have a good preflight checklist, and learn to fly in ATTI mode.

    If you treat your Phantom like a lady, it will be faithful.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  6. Pharm

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    Hey Joe. Welcome. I, too, lost a Parrot. Supposedly if it lost contact, it would hover, using GPS to maintain position. I'd never flown it higher than about 30 ft. After having my Phantom for several months, I decided to try the Parrot at max altitude (120 ft or whatever it was). Took it up, flew 50 ft or sp away and lost contact. No problem. I'll walk closer, regain contact and land it. Nope. I watched as it slowly drifted away over the treetops. I'm sure a wild boar or a Holstein is chomping on it about now. I didn't look for it. I don't miss it.
     
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  7. joet

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    Mine were all 1st gen - no GPS, no nothing - just that sound effect from the Jetsons as it flew awaaaaay.

    Thus far I am MUCH more comfortable with the P3. Took it out over the water last night for some beach sunset flying and everything worked fine. It always did exactly what I asked of it.
     
  8. fastsmiles

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    Welcome Joe,
    You will find that the P3 is a much more sophisticated quad. Keep it in sight and adjust the RTH height to clear any obstacles in your area and it will make it you happy
     
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