Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

Conquering the Fear??

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by voodoo, Feb 8, 2015.

  1. voodoo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Guys,

    I've been granted my first permit to conduct a commercial operation in Canada. An SFOC. I've done ground school, obtained a radio license, flown more than 50 times with my PSV+, and submitted the 30+ page paperwork in 2014. I still am very nervous and shaky to fly most of the time, unless I'm in a field in the middle of nowhere. I think it's a function of knowing that these things can have something go wrong at any time. I'm always worried about fly-aways and crashes and props breaking and birds, etc etc.

    Part of my issue is that I know I should have a P2 with a much better transmitter (Futaba, Spectrum, etc) and more reliable FPV such as a Black Pearl. But does that change much? Alternatively, would I feel more comfortable with an Inspire? Are they THAT much more reliable? They seem to be.

    I just see so much stuff online about responsibly flying and STILL issues occur :/

    I'd love to discuss if there are others out there with the same issue. Thanks
     
  2. discv

    Joined:
    May 7, 2013
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    26
    Location:
    London, UK
    Changing the hardware will not solve the problem- because 'the problem' is what you are reading on the net.

    I recently had experience of a strong and sudden gust of wind catching my craft. Instead of concentrating (just letting go of the sticks would have solved it)- I panicked. All the inter web horror tales went through my head. I over reacted on the sticks and things went from bad to worse!!

    You- and I- need to focus on our record of successful flights. With your 50+ zero disaster, the odds are well in favour of the next flight being OK.

    To address your title 'Conquering the fear', that fear is after having read the pilot error of others. And that doesn't apply to you :)
     
  3. knuckles

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    456
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Arizona
    I wouldn't change the hardware. I'm a member of several inspire Facebook groups and I read about issues they have all the time. I trust my phantom 2 more than an inspire but to be fair I don't own one of them.

    The best thing you can do is practice with your equipment and be prepared as much as you can for anything. For example what would you do if you lost GPS and it started acting strange. Be prepared to change and switch into ATTI mode and how to use it.
    If you will be doing real estate stuff then practice this type of flying with no clients around.
    The more time you spend with your equipment the more comfortable you will be. I used to be nervous flying over water but I've done many flights now over water near the coast.
     
  4. Happyflyer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2014
    Messages:
    1,805
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Cold, Cold, Michigan
    Very good advise above. If you do nothing but worry of disasters, then you will never be a safe and successful pilot. If you totally forget what could happen at any time when in the air, you will end up being a very dangerous and careless pilot. You must always keep in the back of your mind what could happen at any time. Even if you have had 200 flights without any problems. These mechanical devices can and do fail. With knowledge of what to do if/when it happens is very important.
    Best wishes in the continuation of your adventure.
     
  5. Buckaye

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2014
    Messages:
    1,557
    Likes Received:
    420
    Location:
    Orlando
    Psychologically thinking - you need to put yourself through an exposure therapy routine. In Cognitive Therapy - if you are afraid of something - one key way to dissipate that is to create a routine where you expose yourself to the fearful situation and systematically increase the duration of the exposure.

    I am actually using this to help me with nervousness of flying higher and farther than I am naturally comfortable with. Lately I fly around in my comfort zone for a while and then purposefully fly further than I normally feel comfortable with and let the Phantom sit at that distance for a while and rotate slowly around using the FPV to get used to what I see through that system. Then I fly it back to me. Each time - I extend the length and or distance I let the Phantom fly to.

    I do the same thing with height... just fly a little higher... let it sit at that height and rotate - get used tot he view in FPV and fly down closer to me.

    It's been working - as I have found myself going further without stress and higher without stress over time.

    The other thing I do is practice flying circuits - getting comfortable with all orientations is the most important skill to learning to deal with flying beyond your comfort zone. If you can orient yourself in any position you can recover from a lot.

    Just my approach (from a guy with a degree in Psychology :) )
     
  6. voodoo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Wow guys great responses. Thank you so much. I've flown several times since posting, including my first SFOC. I do think I will be upgrading equipment though. I really want a more professional setup with a ground monitor and a stronger 2.4GHz control link, and probably even a futaba or spectrum transmitter. Thanks again!! Follow my project here https://www.facebook.com/skycapture.vancouver
     
  7. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2014
    Messages:
    4,910
    Likes Received:
    1,789
    Location:
    Lost Angeles
    I think Buckaye is right. And much like flying full-sized craft there is no substitute for seat time. Even after a year with the Phantom, I am still learning to trust my FPV more and recognizing the differences between where I think the Phantom is in relation to something else vs. where it really is.

    Also, I remind myself frequently that if the bird goes down, and even if I can't get it back, it's nothing that can't be replaced.
     
  8. PTCX

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2013
    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    61
    Location:
    Australia
    Wow Buckaye that's exactly what I've done to get over some nervousness when flying long distances and over water or irretrievable terrain without knowing there was any Psychological/cognitive therapy aspect to what I was doing but it certainly worked for me.
    The only time I get a bit shaky now is when there are people watching me.The potential embarrassment of crashing in front of an audience I suppose.So in theory I should start flying in front of an increasingly larger audience then.

    Voodoo,good luck in your commercial venture and just keep practicing.The more time spent flying the more comfortable you will become and the boundaries become less daunting.
    Also,upgrading the transmitter/receiver to a Futaba has been the best thing I've done to my set up.It just feels better and there are a lot of advantages to having a more adaptable transmitter with more channels and timers so you can adjust things to suit yourself,not to mention more range and reliability.
     
  9. edonovanl

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Messages:
    630
    Likes Received:
    140
    Location:
    Treasure Island, FL
    My fear, as a novice, is damaging my camera/gimbal while I am learning to control my P2 V+. I posted my idea of removing the camera/gimbal while I practice and learn control but got a mixed bag of responses, all very good! Conquering the fear is tough with a $1300 quad so I am going to start with removing the gimbal. My way of managing my fear, I guess...

    Happyflyer - I am curious about your experience with the RF-V16 Tracker. I've been researching them but haven't found anything I like yet.
     
  10. WPSPETE

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2014
    Messages:
    202
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Vernon BC Canada
    For my first 20 or so flights I was always worried about a fly away or it falling out of the sky. Too much reading on here! Now at 55 flights I feel very comfortable flying it tight areas, over water etc. I just follow a strict set up and tear down regime. I check my props for cracks, spin the motors each by hand to see if bearing are going. And before each flight I start up the motors then shut them down just to see if they all stop at the same time. Maybe it will indicate a potential failure and maybe it won't. But it makes me feel better lol.
     
  11. morph000

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Orstralia is our norf island !
    Meh.. know the feeling.
    Just got my new v3 Phantom after my v2 went swimming for reasons unknown, but I have my suspicions as to why...
    Somewhat nervous too for new flights given the issues posed on the forum.
    OK - flies well but does seem a tad more...lethargic ? then the old v2, but anyway...
    Fear and apprehension is all about lack of belief in yourself and your ability to control the situation.
    BELIEVE in yourself and your abilities and recognise that **** happens regardless and you'll be better for it ! :mrgreen:
    I was, in years past, a die-hard gym junkie - just an average Joe as it were but 500kg leg presses for an 80kg guy are a result of total confidence in one's self. Anything else and it's bodybag time ! 100,000kg in a set ? Did it for fun once.
    You MUST believe in yourself and have confidence. Confidence comes from experience and belief !
    Cyclic ? Yep, but that's reality.

    Or, if you like : Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment ! :mrgreen:
     
  12. Ezookiel

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2014
    Messages:
    575
    Likes Received:
    153
    Location:
    Canberra Australia
    I have a 4WD, I bought it to go off-road. Within weeks it was scratched from bushes and branches off-road. I hate doing that to it, but this is what I bought it to do with it, so I grit my teeth and keep going out bush with it.

    I have a mate that went with me when I went to pick up the P2, and since I bought mine as a "pro" package with a carbon effect body, FPV gear, Black Pearl, H3-3D Gimbal, and a GoPro Hero 4 Black, it's a very expensive package. Everytime I took it out over the water at my local lake, which is the best option for places to fly near my home, he starts going into panic attacks telling me "It's over the water, it's over the water" and warning me that it's not IF you lose it into the water, but WHEN, and you're going to drown a hell of a lot of money, but my attitude is the same to my P2 as it is to the 4WD. Yes, I could lose the P2, but then I could keep it safely chained to my shelf at home and never fly it too. That would stop me losing it, but it wasn't bought to be an ornament. I get nervous when I'm over water, and part of me relaxes a lot when I'm back over land, but I'm not going to let that fear stop me using the thing the way it was designed.
    I know a battery could die (WILL die if they're DJI brand ones), or an ESC go, or a motor blow, or a bird attack it, or any number of things cause it to go for a permanent final swim, but that's the way life is. It's full of risks.
     
  13. edonovanl

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Messages:
    630
    Likes Received:
    140
    Location:
    Treasure Island, FL
    WPSPETE, did you leave the gimbal attached during your first 20 flights? Were you already experienced or did you practice with a cheaper drone?

    On the strict pre and post flight, I totally agree. I've written up my own preflight list just to make sure I don't miss anything.
     
  14. WPSPETE

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2014
    Messages:
    202
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Vernon BC Canada
    It was all attached. Even had the fpv screen on the TX. I have flown planes for years, been a skydiver and paraglider, flown real planes a few times and had one coaxial heli a few years ago. I probably stared at it in the case for a full day before flying it. I was very nervous. But these things fly easy as pie. I enjoy that part because I am after the money shots lol.

    I have missed things a few times.... So I need to write up a pre flight list. I mixed antennas up last flight. And I was nervous once and did not put an antenna on the FPV TX. Luckily I didn't fry it!
     
  15. Fyod

    Joined:
    May 21, 2014
    Messages:
    684
    Likes Received:
    61
    Location:
    Central EU
    If you've had that many successfull flights, you should stop worrying. Just check the condition of the motors every 10 flights, screw tightness. Open up the top every now and then to check the internals.

    I had the same problem as you, but not anymore. I stopped upgrading the quad at v3.02 I think it was because the new updates cause more problems than useful features.
    I'm not willing to be a guinea pig every time they update airports and then everyone's quads go bezerk.

    Oh and the internet is good for help and/or complaining. The number of happy fliers here is small due to the fact that they don't keep posting that they're happy. Then all the negative experiences outweigh the positive ones atleast 10 fold.

    Some Phantom owners don't even know there's online communities and some don't even know you can upgrade something. They just take them out any fly regardless of the almost 2 year old firmware.
     
  16. PhantomFanatic

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2014
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    USA, GA
    Pardon me for not reading all of the posts before posting, but I did so because I want to give you my true feelings on this. First, buying an Inpire won't change your concern. It might increase it as there seem to be significant problems with the inspire.

    Perhaps it is my reading here, but despite the problems that can be because of 'pilot' error, I think there is an underlying problem. I believe that DJI is aware of this.

    But, I choose to fly! All I can do is to make preparations for such an event. I have done so by putting a label on my Phantom, that stands out (bought a labeling machine) saying that there is a reward for return of my Phantom. My contact information is on the label.

    My second level of preparation is a GPS tracker. My last step is a label inside of the Phantom, listing the serial number, my S.S. number, address and phone number. This is in case it is pawned. I haven't decided on this, but I will mark the Phantom, visible from the outside, such that no one will recognize it as anything other than a factory marking.

    If Law Enforcement fails to find the person who pawned it, I will!

    This is what you should do. The only other options are non-DJI products, but most new products will also have inherent problems. So, unless you can re-design the Phantom, take the above measures and fly worry free, along with studying the downloadable manual until you understand ALL of it.

    Other options are EBay labels for your controller, that will help if you panic and forget what you should do! I've done it to mine. Another bonus is it makes the controller look too hard to use for all the people who want to fly it! I also added knobs that slip over the controller sticks. I love them!

    One last option, once you have FPV is to add a Digital Video Recorder or DVR. Why? Because if you can't find your Phantom or someone takes it into their home, you will have invaluable video AND audio of the thieves! Or, if your GPS tracker fails, you will have video, that just might help you find it. Take the controller, shout and see if you hear it.

    Now, chill dude! :)
     
  17. voodoo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks everyone for the comments.

    As for my updates, things have been looking up. Since posting, I've forced myself to be more and more bold and it feels good. I've been flying over water and up in them mountains, all of which are locations where if I have a hardware failure or flyaway of any kind (barring a RTH), then it's gone. I agree with several of you. Life is full of risks and that's just the way it is.

    Another exciting update, I bought a P2 + H4-3D combo with fpv setup today. There was enough incentive to do so, so it was time. I pulled the trigger on a H4B last Dec 1 when GoPro had a free 64gb mini SD card promo. I pretty much was setting myself up to get a P2 & Zenmuse. I had to wait a couple months for the native H4-3D motors, and here we are. v2.0 Phantom with new motors, props, ESCs, and controller + better control link vs the P2V+ more professional 7" monitor with 5.8Ghz rather than a little phone, along with now 4K aerials with the H4 all combined to basically make a very straightforward decision. I've been able to get SFOCs in Canada now too - permission to fly commercially. See my website here Sky Capture and work here Portfolio. Thanks!