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Don't launch from roof of your car ...

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by dhsprogis, Aug 6, 2016.

  1. dhsprogis

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    Oops!
    I wanted to avoid launching from the sand at the beach so I tried launching from my car. As soon as I armed the rotors, the wind got under them and was enough to lift the P3 of the roof and came tumbling down into the sand on the side. Then, I was chasing after it trying to grab the legs while I shut it off - ughh. Props were trashed but drone OK.
    My guess is that the wind accelerated as it passed close over the roof of my car. Anyway, I don't plan to do that again.
     
  2. RedHotPoker

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    Sick! I feel for you.. Stomache did a flip flop, and my breakfast turned over. I would have freaked, yet you sound so calm about it. Make sure you blow them motors out good with compressed air, before firing it back up. Get any grit out of them motor housings. Be more careful will ya. Yeah, I use a handy launch pad, I made, and never even consider anything else.
    Heck, even a floor mat from the vehicle will suffice, in a pinch. ;-)

    RedHotPoker
     
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  3. Richard R

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    Even without the wind, I would be concerned about what all that metal does to your compass!
     
  4. msinger

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    It would be best not to try to launch from any type of metal that is magnetic. It'll most likely confuse the compass and make your Phantom fly erratically once it's in the air.
     
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  5. Banderboy

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    Yeah, mine complained when I went to launch off the car roof the other day. Walked a few steps away and all was ok.
     
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  6. Quadcopterpilot

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    Good advise, thanks
     
  7. dhsprogis

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    Yup, cleaned it up, threw new props on and she seems OK.
    I just won't be doing that again anytime soon!
     
  8. Janel

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    I had my only crash with my DJI in a similar wind effect situation. I was flying over my garage roof inspecting possible repair needs of the exterior of my house in spots that were not visible on foot, when a downdraft pushed it down and out of visible sight. I heard it hit the roof a second later and I fumbled with the controls unsuccessfully.
    Just try to be aware that there might be some change in airflow, around the peak of a roof. I did not anticipate this. Funny things happen. The more experience we get flying the more we can anticipate posdible problems and prevent crashes.
    I flew today in an open area with lots of wind. The craft was fine.
    Thanks for sharing your experience.
     
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  9. Richard R

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    Possible turbulence around structures both natural and man made is a topic area for possible questions on the UAS test!
     
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  10. RedHotPoker

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    #10 RedHotPoker, Aug 6, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2016
  11. Digdat0

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    Was it the car, or the wind? I too found out the hard way that, at the beach, you gotta take off hard and into the wind with force. Watch the first 20 seconds of this vid .. I did the same, but on the rocky jetty.

     
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  12. Wibble

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    You can hand launch as well as hand catch. I do it all the time. Easier with a helper.
     
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  13. dhsprogis

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    Lovely!
     
  14. ElGuapo

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    I had a similar situation when I was flying to inspect the roof of my daughter's house, I did not hit anything but came close to hitting a tree, ouch.
     
  15. Northern Observer

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    Launching from your car is a no no. It messes up the compass like in this Phantom 2. No control after take off except for the throttle.

     
  16. F6Rider

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    NEVER, EVER launch from a metal surface, unless you don't want to keep your bird. The compass is on the bottom of the landing leg within an inch of the car top, and the metal will seriously screw with the compass. Some times it will correct itself after lift off, and others it will just fly erratically or do a fly away. This has been discussed many times and is also covered in the manual. Rebar in cement, underground cable, or a beach with a lot of iron in the sand can also affect your compass. I have been hand catching for 2 years without issue, and if I am in an area with no easy launch point I also hand launch. (tip: I keep one leather glove in my flight case for hand launching, if you have ever had an encounter with a prop you know why)
     
  17. mikie

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    I want to make an elevated landing pad out of aluminum sheet. Is compass ok with non metallic materials?
     
  18. Dounin Front

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    Al is ok, Fe is not.
     
  19. Flintstone

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    Hope you carry a can of compressed air to blow any sand out of the motors...not good to have sand in motors. Remember a car can disrupt your correct compass and GPS settings if you launch with metal objects near.
     
  20. skipilot1

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    Best thing is to hand launch.