Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

All these reported flyways are going to kill sales

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by hancop, Jan 20, 2014.

  1. hancop

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2014
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    I can't believe the number of flyways and battery issues I have been reading about.
    I was all excited about purchasing one of the phantom 2's with the gimble and getting a go pro 3+ to put on it.
    After spending many hours reading about fly aways and battery issues, I can't stomach the thought of watching $1,400 worth of equipment be destroyed or be unrecoverable.
    Couple thoughts that might help:
    -add a smaller second battery as backup so if main battery or contacts fail it takes over and notifies user to fly it back home or flies home automatically
    -change the gopro gimble so that the gopro can fit into it with the protective case on. At least if you crash or go into water hopefully your $400 camera would then survive.

    I want to purchase one of these but just can't until the issues with them have been ironed out

    Signed one sad wannabe phantom pilot
     
  2. LeoS

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2013
    Messages:
    747
    Likes Received:
    1
    The irony is that most of the flyways are probably caused\experienced by those who don't bother to check up online forums or read the manuals. They'd be unfamiliar with the preventive steps and corrective manoeuvres or even how to diagnose issues properly...

    So... no, I don't think these flyaways are affecting the sales that much.
     
  3. Marc70

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2013
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Phantom v.1.1, has the bracket to hold the Gopro naked (without case), or I can attach the Gopro with the case on (which I always do). I've seen videos of Gopros falling from great heights and surviving while encased. I actually can't believe anyone would fly without the Gopro encased.
     
  4. hancop

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2014
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't think the h3-2d gimbal for the phantom 2 will accept the go pro 3 or 3+ with the case on ?
     
  5. hancop

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2014
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Leos, I would say most of the posts I read about flyaways the people have said they read all the manuals, spent time setting up the phantom properly and were flying normally then the thing just took off. They then tried all the failsafes to regain control but nothing worked ):
     
  6. Ksc

    Ksc

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    973
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Naples, FL
    Fly aways have been an issue for ever. It hasn't hurt sales at all. Look at the vision section, there are more people buying than phantoms flying away. Also, as previously stated, you'll find that a good percentage of fly aways are not actual fly aways because the naza decided it wanted to go for a stroll. Most fly aways are due to pilot error or pilot missing vital info. For example, a bad motor or bearing that locks up and in turn the phantom tries to level itself. It's like a drunk walking down the road, as he tips over, his body is going to be running in that direction to try to get under his head and will keep running until he smashes into something. Sure you can say that motor/bearing issues show be on DJI but if you bought a new car and one of the wheels was making a noise, would you ignore it and just go for a nice long drive? No so why would you ignore the noise of a bad motor/bearing. A first time pilot might not understand the sounds and miss vital info which causes a fly away but it's no different than a first time car owner who wrecks a car because they didn't know they couldn't drive 10,000 miles on the spare tire. There is a reason you don't see phantoms sold at Walmart and best buy; it's not intended for the every day normal person. It's intended for someone who is going to invest the time and effort to learn. The reason they don't include a manual, because an RC fan will know to look online and on forums to learn about the products. Long story short, fly aways can be avoided more often than not.
     
  7. reALIGNed

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2013
    Messages:
    187
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    S.E. Wisconsin
    strongly agree, very well put. ;)
     
  8. BigSky

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    1
    We need to look into insurance, at least see if any company is willing to write a policy. I for one would invest in insurance if it's available. I have not contacted my insurance company yet, but I plan on doing that.
    How about we form a self insured group? We could do it through a forum, pay monthly fees for a policy, and have a 200.00 deductible for replacement. Or something like that.
     
  9. PetePerrim

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2014
    Messages:
    138
    Likes Received:
    16
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    I would suggest that a great deal of the flyaway a are pilot error, pure and simple. I know this because like most new owners of this type of quad you tend to believe that they can be pulled out of the box, charged up and flown immediately without any real effort from the pilot. Wrong. These machines are inherently fickle and are affected by many atmospheric and environmental influencers. Just like a 747 they need a pre flight check every time and I also saw someone make the great suggestion of a 1 minute hover before departing the take off area to ensure the compass is calibrated and there are no other control or electronic issues.

    I learned my lesson the expensive way with my last quad (Walkera QRX350) which is now a total loss of well over $1000 so when my new DJI arrives it will be treated with the respect it deserves and will be kept up to date with firmware upgrades etc. I don't think I could afford to lose another expensive toy so it is up to me to make sure that I have done absolutely everything I can to keep it flying home at the end of each flight.
     
  10. PitStop

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2013
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    0
    I can't believe anyone would take video from a phantom without a gimbal :eek:

    People tend to vocalize their problems , not their successes. When someone has flyaway, they are likely to jump online and tell the world about it, but you don't see people posting each time they have a successful flight. I suspect the actual percentage of owners having flyaways is quite small.
     
  11. Ksc

    Ksc

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    973
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Naples, FL
    yes if it locks up. but if the bearing needs to be replaced the phantom can push through it but at the expense of it not flying correctly. Also if prop guards are removed but the 2 screws are not replaced, the motors can tilt inwards which will rub on the body and the body will work almost like a brake.
     
  12. Ksc

    Ksc

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    973
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Naples, FL
    agreed but the lens itself scratches fairly easy.
     
  13. Punisher

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2013
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Spring Grove, Illinois
    I would have to believe that most are caused by pilots who don't set a home point, don't calibrate the compass, use the gopro wifi or don't change batteries in their controllers. People need to spend enough time reading and operating low level, close to home flights to get used to what the lights mean and how to control the unit before taking off for a high altitude, long distance run. I get the people who don't know about the gopro wifi, unless you read the forums there is nothing telling you not too.
     
  14. LeoS

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2013
    Messages:
    747
    Likes Received:
    1
    Excuse my nitpicking... but, for, science :)

    1. I used to believe that not setting home point was really detrimental in what you described.. but NAZA's logic is actually to immediately set home point as soon as it gets 6 satellites. So unless he flies in urban settings, surrounded by buildings or under a canopy of trees\leaves, most Phantom will set their home point within 1 minute of flying anyway, which should still be fairly close with the pilot's standing spot. Although it's not exactly at the pilot's position, it won't be Shenzhen, China.

    2. I've found that frequent compass calibration is not necessary. Maybe I'm tempting fate, but I've only recalibrated the compass on my PV once over my 2+ months ownership of it with regular flying. NAZA has an algorithm to detect compass inaccuracy\drift and it will trigger the alarm when the drift is past its tolerance. So far it hasn't triggered on me and I'm getting confident with its judgement since my PV is still very predictably. (Until yesterday's trim drift, at least; see relevant post)

    3. GoPro wifi would probably stay 98% in listening mode, unless you activate it with the gopro wifi remote or app. When it's in idle\listening mode, it shouldn't interfere with other 2.4ghz receiver much (Except if you're flying in urban areas where you're close with open wifi hotspots, then gopro may try to (re)connect to them and cause 2.4ghz activity).
    Of course it should be turned off, but I think gopro interference (without use of app\remote) is slightly exaggerated.

    4. The transmitter is actually quite economical in its use of battery. One report quoted 1500 minutes of usage before it finally beeped a low-batt warning (viewtopic.php?t=1629&p=11037), and the low-batt warning buffer zone should also last for more than 1 flight. So unless you've kept your Phantom in storage for a long time where the battery level may have drained to dangerously low level unchecked, you should have enough buffer to land your phantom safely before the transmitter powered off on its own.
     
  15. Punisher

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2013
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Spring Grove, Illinois
    Strange...my manual doesn't say that probably because mine never came with one. I had to download it from their website. It also doesn't read like that either. It says: "Make sure there is no other wireless device which may interfere in flight, such as a GoPro3, high power broadcasting, signal station." This could easily be misinterpreted where people are to be sure there is no GoPro High Power Broadcasting signal station in the area. Sounds ridiculous but it is written poorly.

    The compass calibration is not needed regularly but it is needed when the phantom tells you it is needed. Many people have no idea what those lights mean.
     
  16. Ton4

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Messages:
    348
    Likes Received:
    1
    Flyaways are real. People who did everything right loose a Phantom because of issues beyond their control.

    Don't be protective of a product that sometimes has its issues.

    Suppose we had a number, what would be acceptable for you?

    A chance of 5% that you will loose your investment? 2%, 1% 10%?

    In the rc world crashes are common but these products are getting another audience.

    Its time people don't accept anymore to be put to sleep by stories about calibration, interference, bad gps reception and the like.

    It's time that companies producing these machines start addressing safety issues. They should come up with satisfying answers on questions like "What happens when the flight controller fails?"

    No skydiver jumps without a backup, no quad should leave the ground without one too.

    In a time where a complex OSD costs relatively nothing redundancy should be cheap as well.

    Don't play the issues down. There is enough reason to ask for a safer product.
     
  17. Punisher

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2013
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Spring Grove, Illinois
    [facepalm] That's my point, it didn't come with a manual and there are a large number of people who either didn't know they could download it or didn't bother. That's why they didn't know about the gopro wifi!
     
  18. Ton4

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Messages:
    348
    Likes Received:
    1
    No one in particular, but it's my idea that people, in general, have the tendency to bury real flyaways in a mist of possible pilot errors, compass dances, interference or whatever, rather than seeing the simple truth of a failing device.
     
  19. ericty

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2013
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    0

    Hey Phantasmic - is your Phantom equipped with a gimbal when you use that lens protector on your GoPro?
     
  20. shortyuk

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    144
    Likes Received:
    3
    im just making hay while the sun shines, one accident with one of these things in the UK, and our government will ban them, its a shame but its only a matter of time , maybe it would be better if they were licenced to be honest, with proper training etc