Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

****! First crash.

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision + Discussion' started by cahutch, Aug 8, 2014.

  1. cahutch

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Sonoma County, CA
    I had my first crash tonight and I'm fuming mad about it.
    Unforeseen consequences of my own actions. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

    I got the idea to do some camera testing at night. First I was motors off just taking test pictures and video in the dark.
    Then I got it in my head to do some actual flight testing, just hovering in my back yard and looking back at the house to see how well the camera could see me and the lights in the windows at various ISO settings.
    Then I made the fatal mistake. I decided to clip a flashlight into the gimbal protector tray. (thanks fatsmiles)

    I took off from the back deck and put it into a hover about 12 feet up in the back yard. Then I noticed she was drifting a lot. I saw the TBE (toilet bowl effect) for the first time. Should have landed it then and there but the effect settled out and she seemed fine after that. For only about 30 seconds. I was trying to rotate back and look at the house when all hell broke loose. She started drifting backward fast. I tried to counter with no effect so I gave it throttle to try to get altitude and by that time she was leaned over so far the throttle only served to speed up the sideways momentum. She just missed the house, went past the side of the house, impacted on asphalt and skidded under my neighbors truck.
    The battery dislodged on impact and I found that 10 feet away from the wreck. The camera guard came lose and lodged up in the wheel of the truck with the flashlight on it.

    While it was happening, I had no idea why. On reflection though I realize I had put a metallic, high current device right next to the compass. **** it.

    So let that be a lesson to all. Don't attach anything to the phantom without thinking really hard about how that will affect it. And keep anything metallic away from the landing gear.

    The good news is the damage seems superficial as far as I can tell now. The camera and gimbal still work. The ribbon cable is still intact. Nothing is bent.
    Just some broken props and nasty black road rash on two arms.

    Now I need to go back to kicking myself and checking and cleaning the damage.
    Stupid, stupid, stupid.
     
  2. ircphoenix

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2014
    Messages:
    56
    Likes Received:
    0
    YOU LEFT OUT THE MOST IMPORTANT PART!!!

    A link to the youtube video. =D

    Glad to hear the damage seems to be minor!
     
  3. UrAwFuL

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2014
    Messages:
    622
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    So did the protector serve it's purpose? :lol:

    I'm thinking about ordering from fatsmiles tonigt.
     
  4. cahutch

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Sonoma County, CA
    Update:
    Based on the skid marks, she impacted straight back on the back arms and back corners of the landing gear.
    The battery took heavier damage than I thought at first. The plastic housing is cracked in several places and there's some superficial road rash damage to the actual LiPo shell.

    Not sure if the protector helped in this case. The tie wraps all broke and I found it a few feet away. The way it hit though was probably the best possible way to hit in terms of gimbal damage. Backwards where there is the most clearance. I don't think any part of the camera or gimbal touched the ground or anything else.
    One of the motor housings has some grinding on it so it may have hit upside down and rolled over onto the landing gear.

    Unfortunately I wasn't recording at the time. I was just getting into position.
     
  5. sidebox

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2014
    Messages:
    295
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    BKNY
    I'm gonna count that as a win for gimbal protectors... It means that the guard probably took at least some of the energy. I'm not biased or anything...

    The toilet bowl effect is probably caused by the compass interference or do you think it was the weight of the flashlight?
     
  6. DavesMotorCity

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2014
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    0
    1300$ of Chinese plastic. Great move with the flashlight redneck!
     
  7. cahutch

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Sonoma County, CA
    TBE is caused by compass.
    Yeah. I know. Don't rub it in. I'm already kicking myself.

    I have to wonder how and why the compass could possibly cause this kind of thing.
    AFAIK, the compass only tells the phantom what direction it's heading.
    The IMU tells it if it's level or yawing.
    So why would a heading error cause it to pitch out of control? It seems like a flaw in the software. If the compass and IMU don't agree, it should trust the IMU first.

    I have a small $150 quad that doesn't have a compass but it maintains it's heading anyway since the internal gyroscope can tell if it's yawing and it automatically compensates for any yaw.
    I'm beginning to think the Phantom would be better off without a compass.

    If I had switched to Atti mode would that have helped recover? Does it ignore compass as well as GPS in Atti mode? It does use the IMU in Atti mode to automatically level right?
    I'm thinking if I had switched to Atti mode it would have leveled out and I could have gained some altitude and recovered.
     
  8. freeskier989

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2014
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    Newport Beach, CA
    Why you such a douche in all your posts? Sounds like your the redneck...
     
  9. cahutch

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Sonoma County, CA
    Well, I got it all cleaned up. Had to take some sandpaper to the road rash to smooth it out.
    Checked internal connectors. Checked motors. Checked Gimbal. All appear OK.
    Fired it up and checked IMU, no calibration required but I did anyway.
    I'll re calibrate the compass when I can take it outside.
    Motors start and all appear to spin normally.

    Camera and telemetry work with the app. The gimbal seems to work fine though it may have a problem. Time will tell.
    It may or may not be making a noise now that I didn't notice before. Sort of a sizzling or buzzing noise. I think that's the servo motors making small movements. The noise gets louder when I move it around.
    And when I started a recording to test, it tilted sideways a bit. But after I picked it up it leveled again.

    I won't say I was lucky because it would have been luckier to have not crashed at all, but it could have been much worse.
    The only real damage was to the battery. I'm going to have to epoxy the plastic frame back together and see if I can salvage it.
     
  10. Double-D

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2014
    Messages:
    319
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    The Land Down Under
    I feel your frustration with yourself. Glad it ended in only superficial damage.
    Just putting it out there, but what you described also sounds like a possibility that it lost GPS satellites and went into ATTI mode with it driving ?
     
  11. happydays

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,845
    Likes Received:
    655
    Location:
    Warrenpoint, Ireland
    Ouch! At least you escaped with relatively minor damage and not an expensive gimbal to replace.
     
  12. cmhorka

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2014
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0
    OUCH! SO sorry to hear this mishap! I am patiently awaiting delivery of a new P2V+ today ... these stories scare the beejeepers out of me! I have been practicing with a Hubsan X4 107C and feel fairly confident that the P2 will be easier to fly considering altitude/position hold (fingers crossed). I have some experience with Rd airplane flight, but that was some years ago. I also have a private pilot license, though no flying in several years. No crashes as a private pilot! :) I'm planning to follow the user guide page by page tonight with a possible first flight tomorrow in a wide-open field. Any 'newbie' comments, suggestions, or pit-falls to avoid are most welcome!
     
  13. happydays

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,845
    Likes Received:
    655
    Location:
    Warrenpoint, Ireland
    viewtopic.php?f=39&t=22221
     
  14. M.Tigelaar

    Joined:
    May 27, 2014
    Messages:
    449
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    Lucky man, most people are not so lucky. ;)
    Like me. :lol:

    I hit a tree. ( pure pilot error )
    It fell down 30 meter.
    Bent the gimbal.
    Rolled over in the water.
    It still flies fine but no camera at all. :(
    I use it for manually fly :cool:

    I bought a new one :D
     
  15. DCGOO

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2014
    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    Patiently?... I doubt that :D
     
  16. cmhorka

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2014
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ok - you are right - there isn't a patient bone in my body right now :lol:
     
  17. cmhorka

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2014
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0
  18. Double-D

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2014
    Messages:
    319
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    The Land Down Under
    You will find all the advice has been mentioned on these forums so I won't repeat them and it sounds like you are intelligent as you're reading the manual, plus you've flown real planes. I can only imagine the nerves you must have flying a real plane for the first time so I'm sure you'll cope. I have about 80 flights under my belt and I'm still anxious every flight.
    I guess the real difference would be the lack of feeling the plane/quadcopter movement sitting in the chair holding the sticks.
    I will say, take it slow, get familiar with it and safe flying.
    Be sure to let us know how you go :)
     
  19. cmhorka

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2014
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for the encouragement Double-D, appreciate your feedback. I would say even in a actual plane I always had anxious excitement (if that make sense) before each flight. I am hoping to NOT encounter any of the technical, 'out of ones control' issues. It is challenge enough to fly safely and accurately without dealing with failures due to manufacturing or software issues. I DO hear many folks on this board having successful flights and a TON of fun. I hope to be in that category! - Happy flying - CHris
     
  20. cahutch

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Sonoma County, CA
    Even in atti mode there would be no reason for it to suddenly pitch over. There was no wind at all. I was watching and it had 10 satellites and I checked the switch to make sure it was in GPS.
    Ironically, if I had switched to atti mode I may have been able to get control and avoid the crash.