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Flotation devices

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Suwaneeguy, May 27, 2014.

  1. Suwaneeguy

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    With a number of videos I've seen with birds flying over water, I was wondering if any one uses any kind of a flotation device?
    I was thinking that something like what seaplanes use would be a good way to go.
     
  2. garyg

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  3. Simonb3526

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    Not sure I would trust that on water. Once you landed then what? Wade out to get it? Any ripples and it's over. If it crashes then you can get it but it's not water proof.
     
    Man.Of.Kent likes this.
  4. hblink93

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    Thinking "out loud" here...

    I am considering adding some sort of floatation device (pontoons made from either foam pipe insulation or pool "noodles") as a safety measure. I have my drone insured against crash damage (including water damage) as long as there is no negligent flying, the aircraft is recovered, and the water damage isn't salt water. The pontoons I would put on the aircraft would ensure that if I had a water crash that the P3 would float long enough for a recovery. I have no aspirations of landing on the water. Rotor wing effects near the surface of the water are scary and might cause damage to the aircraft, camera or gimbal--very low flight is out of the question.

    I will be videoing a crew (rowing) practice here shortly, and although I am confident in my ability to fly safely and trust my aircraft's reliability, I still want an extra measure of safety, if the worst should happen. I don't even care if the thing floats upright (although, that would be an added bonus if there were an uncommanded landing on the water). Any pontoons I add can't interfere with the camera movement or field of view, since shooting video is the reason I'm doing this flight in the first place.

    I'd be pleased to hear of any ideas, or (even better) some experience. I'm going to do the over water flight anyway. I recognize the added risk of over water flight--I'd just like to know that I could get the airframe back for an insurance claim, if that ever came to be.

    Thanks for any perspectives on this.
    ---H
     
  5. syotr

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    There have been many threads here discussing the same question. You will find lots of info quickly if you do a search. I have tried several different float systems and find that anything which has enough volume to float the Phantom, will really affect flight performance, act like a sail in the wind, and probably show up in your video.
    I have built a waterproof quad just for this purpose. You might also consider adding a "Getterback."
     
  6. Mark The Droner

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    Probably anybody that flies over water thinks about this, but it seems the experienced pilots dismiss the idea because 1) they trust their aircraft and 2) the weight and/or non-aerodynamics of whatever it is your considering has more negatives than positives.
     
  7. hblink93

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    Syotr--
    Thank you for steering me towards a "Getterback." I have one coming in the mail now. While I hope never to test it out, I think this simple solution will put me a bit more at ease.
     
  8. hblink93

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    Marknmd--
    I agree with your assessment. Floatation is just too big, heavy, and non-aerodynamic to be practical. Syotr (the comment above yours) pointed me toward the "Getterback." I bought one of these and it is coming in the mail. I think I will attach this to the landing gear. It doesn't seem too big, and will serve my purpose to allow recovery. Having already plopped a drone into wet mud, I've witnessed that water intrusion makes the aircraft a total loss. Just the electronics corrosion alone is devastating. My hope is that with the "Getterback," I can recover the aircraft, then make an insurance claim (assuming the crash is due to an aircraft failure over water).
     
  9. Mark The Droner

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    Yes I like the Getterback. Never used it but I did buy one a while back, I have it right here. I am thinking of getting another one just for balance. I would just strap it on if I go to the lake or whatever. No insurance here. I prefer self-insurance. ;) I'll just dry the hell out of it for two weeks and hope for the best.
     
  10. TheLightSpeedz

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    I think the getter back is pointless. You're drone will still be a total loss and in the event it's too deep the floater will not pick it up


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  11. Mark The Droner

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    The floater will not pick it up? Of course the floater will not pick it up. The device is not designed to pick it up.

    Re total loss, if that was true I wouldn't waste my time, but lots of people have posted on this site that they have had success drying out fresh water from a Phantom so that it flies again.
     
  12. syotr

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    My preference is to have a waterproof quad that floats. I have had one crash in whitewater and survived just fine. I have tested it in the pool several times as well.