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Five minutes underwater - and all is well!

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Discussion' started by Ian Stark, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. Ian Stark

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    Hi,

    I'm a new Phantom 2 user - just a few weeks - but I'm getting as much practice in as I can before planning for the UK CAA certification in the spring. I run a modest but successful video production business, now in its fifteenth year, mainly business to business with some documentary and promo projects every now and then. Occasionally I see an opportunity for a really great aerial shot, and increasingly my clients are asking for them, hence the reason for investing in a second hand P2 with all the trimmings. It's great fun and I really wish I had done it a couple of years ago. Anyway, that said, I'm pleased to be flying now and to have found such a great community in this forum.

    Anyway, all that said, I just wanted to report on an early disaster and its rather pleasing outcome.

    I wanted to shoot some footage alongside a riverbank - not over the water, but about six feet from it. I wanted to get the hang of course lock and figured this would be an interesting way to do so. Big mistake :)

    All was going well and I was starting to get to grips with how course lock worked. When I switched back to GPS, though, I was disoriented for a few seconds and had to get my head around which way I needed to push the stick to get the craft to fly right a little before bringing it back towards me. In my moment of mild panic I clearly chose the wrong direction as the Phantom went away from me, over the water, and to my left. I quickly managed to correct my mistake, however by now the Phantom was now further downstream. My big mistake was to try and bring it back over land in between some overhanging trees. I completely misjudged the distance from the trees and clipped one of them, instantly sending the Phantom (and my GoPro Hero 4 Black!) to the bottom of the river, about four feet.

    It was a full five minutes, possibly longer, before I recovered the Phantom. I immediately removed the battery (which was still blinking) and drove home. Fifteen minutes later I was watching YouTube videos on how to open up the case!

    After about thirty minutes using a hairdryer on its lowest setting I packed the GoPro and Zenmuse H3-3D in risotto rice and took them and the Phantom up to the nice, warm airing cupboard.

    Two days later - and everything works perfectly! Phantom, gimbal, Mini iOSD, GoPro (and it's battery) all power up and function just as they did before. I'm still a bit nervous about it all and won't be completely happy until I have tested it numerous times over the next week or so, but fingers crossed, even after five minutes under water, all seems to be OK. That's not the case with the lipo battery (which I didn't leave in the airing cupboard for fear of it exploding!) so I have binned that one. I'm conscious of the fact that even fresh water can contain lots of minerals so I will keep a close eye on any corrosion developing.

    I've certainly learned a lesson - no more trying out new flight modes for the first time within a thousand miles of any water! I guess I was very, very lucky, but it does go to show that the Phantom (and the GoPro, gimbal, etc) are tough bits of technology, for which I am very thankful!
     
  2. afx

    afx

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    I advice you to wash the board with medical spirit or vodka. Even you dried your board with hairdryer and rice but small crystals of salt and other chemical sht are still on the board and some day it may switch off in the air due to a corrosion which will cause crash.
     
  3. Noble 1

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    You can avoid corrosion from minerals and contamination with pure alcohol solvent wash. Higher the alcohol content the better. I've never used vodka. Look on YouTube for a reliable guide.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  4. Ian Stark

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    Thanks very much for the advice. I will investigate asap. Like I mentioned in my original post I will be keeping a close eye on any corrosion (although opening the case each time is a bit of a pain!). Thanks again.
     
  5. Ian Stark

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    Just curious - the only video I found on YouTube (admittedly after only five or so minutes searching) was this one in which the guy actually soaked his Phantom in isopropyl alcohol :



    I was kind of expecting to be using some kind of spray like this Automation Facilities AF 250 ml Isoclene Cleaning Pump Spray: Amazon.co.uk: Office Products

    Could I ask your advice again please? Is the spray insufficient?

    As for using my vodka . . . ain't gonna happen!
     
  6. Stathis

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    Hello Ian!I think that is better to visit an electronics specialist or a hobby shop in your area to clean the electronic parts.There are several products on the market but I dont know which one will not harm the electronics of our phantom.The sooner the better.Enjoy flying with your tough machine!
     
  7. Ian Stark

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    Sound advice, Stathis, thanks.
     
  8. Noble 1

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    If you have visible grime on the board 1.) Disconnect the battery; 2.) Use > 90% proof isopropyl alcohol (nothing less) and clean cotton swabs which are lightly soaked with alcohol and 3.) lightly wipe the board once over. Do not soak the board or drench it with full cotton swabs. If you know a computer tech who is capable of cleaning water damage to electronics give him a call if you have questions or concerns before the cleaning.

    Don't use the spray on isoclene. Return it. You need to wipe specific parts of the board not spray it down. Again this is only necessary if you can see grime dust dirt corrosion or residue.

    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  9. Ian Stark

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    Many thanks Noble 1. Actually there are no visible traces that I can see on any external surface (by which I mean inside the housing, of course) but I am concerned about the little nooks and crannies that can't easily be seen. I'll be taking it to a specialist to have it checked over. I have a second Phantom 2 to keep me going :)