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Accidentally turning off Phantom during flight?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by erkme73, Jan 14, 2014.

  1. erkme73

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    Is this even possible? I'm a bit too chicken to try, but what happens if you push the left stick to the bottom right, and the right stick to the bottom left while it's at altitude? As I'm holding it and trying it, it does completely shut down the motors.

    The reason I ask is that about a week ago, I was up at around 1000' feet when all of a sudden the thing fell like a rock - like someone had taken the battery out. It suffered no damage (landed in a lake, and after disassembling and drying it, it was fine). I found one small brass spacer (from one of the motor shafts) stuck under one of the ESC - and figured that must have shorted out the system. Even without the retaining clip or spacer, the motor held together by magnetic force, and still flew fine (I replaced the motor since).

    But now I'm wondering if I didn't inadvertently turn off the power as I was trying to get the unit to come back. If during a fast descent, you try to turn the unit to the right, while pitching and rolling to the left, I could see how the input on both sticks could trigger a shutdown.
     
  2. Gizmo3000

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    It's pretty hard to accidentally shut a Phantom down in flight, there's just no way to possibly put all 4 sticks in the shut-off position while flying unless it's intentional.

    Tho if you change your NAZA settings to shut down motors "immediately" instead of "intelligent", it will shut down by merely putting the throttle at 0%. but you don't ever wanna change from Intelligent mode!
     
  3. Ksc

    Ksc

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    its possible. but it would require you to hold the left stick down all the way for a few seconds. if you are really high up and need to come down quickly, it can and has been done. otherwise not likely.
     
  4. erkme73

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    I never gave that any thought - and have always dropped quickly when up high. In fact, there were many flights where I was so high up I was at cloud level, and getting back down would take 1-2 minutes with the left stick all the way down. It's usually directly above me at that point, since throttle all the way down means no other input works - yaw, pitch and roll are all deactivated when dropping fast. I have to come up off the bottom (maybe >10%?) and then it'll let me get directional control.

    But never have I been concerned with the power shutting off completely. I just suspected the device knows when it's on the ground (i.e. no altitude change for > 3 seconds while holding throttle all the way down).

    Odd how left stick down on its own during descent has not yet powered it off for me. Maybe it's a combination of left down and right down + left/right... Just don't have the courage to try.

    BTW, mine is ver 1.1.1, with intelligent power-off selected (always).
     
  5. erkme73

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    That's what I thought too. But realistically, if you're so high up that you can't see orientation, and you're throttle all the way down, and you try rotate left/right (by pushing the left stick to the left or right corner), and simultaneously trying to get it to bank left/right and pitch left/right (by pushing the right stick all the way down and to the left or right), you've got the sticks in the shut-down position.

    If the phantom is actually descending, and you just hold the left stick down, it drops RPM to a point where it descends fast, and you loose directional control - but it's still not OFF. Only after landing and altitude doesn't change, and you continue to hold the left stick down for >3 seconds does it shut off. That's why I assume it knows it's actually in flight and descending, and won't power off (in the intelligent mode) when you put the stick(s) in the power-off position.
     
    Reginald Campbell likes this.
  6. Peter Patricelli

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    I have had my P1 definitely turn off during flight. Not because of sticks being in a shut-off position but because of a less-than-solid/firm battery connector and, I assume, the (stock) battery shifting during flight manuvers causing a very short, instantaneous disconnect. Unfortunately, the Bird's brain must go through a boot-up procedure and you do not get control back before the Bird hits the ground, even of the disconnect was for 0.00001 msec.

    When it happens the Bird drops like a dead duck, and I have seen a lot of those.

    On a slightly different note, if you are "way up there in the clouds", I assume you have checked an FAA flight map for the FAA airspace ceiling where you are flying and are clearly staying under that limit??
     
  7. erkme73

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    Battery disconnect, and the ESC shorting out due to the small brass spacer are two things in my differential. I just wanted to in/exclude the idea that I could have inadvertently caused it by careless stick movements.

    Re: air space - yes, I'm about 30 miles from the nearest airport, and never fly outside of visual. Above 400' yes, but never into or through clouds.
     
  8. trellisgrubbsjr

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    My Drone shut off wile in flight. I pulled back on the left stick. The power shut off and it crashed. DJI needs to fix the shutdown procedure before more innocent drones lose there lives.
    [youtube][http://youtu.be/tV0sJjP5wYA]
     
  9. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    A few people here with a misunderstanding of how the Phantom works.
    It will not shut off in flight because you hold the throttle down.
    It will shut off in flight if you put your sticks in the CSC position - but you won't do this by accident.
    No .. the Phantom won't descent faster than a snail's pace 2 metres/second.
     
  10. fastsmiles

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    Did the motors alone shut down, or did the lights turn off as well? Have you tried starting your Phantom since it crashed? There have been instances of total power failure. The fact that it may have happened while you were descending may have been a coincidence.
     
  11. kitari

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    Yep, holding down the throttle stick won't turn off the phantom during flight unless it detects it's no longer moving. However, if you push both sticks down and to the center or any other combination that you use to turn the phantom on, it will indeed shut off the motors mid flight. I've tested this myself.