Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

@@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @@@

Discussion in 'Phantom 1 Help' started by tanasit, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. tanasit

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2013
    Messages:
    554
    Likes Received:
    2
    The manual says that if you fly at the different location, you should calibrate the compass again. I flew mine at home then the next day I drove 5 miles to the flying field but did not calibrate the compass and found no ill effects. I'm just wondering how far away of the next flight that you should recalibrate. Also how do you know that you need the calibration e.g. what type of behaviors we are looking for to assume that the culprit is compass calibration.
    Thanks,
     
  2. kesnim

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2013
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    S.Holland.Lincs.UK
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    What mode were you using? If not GPS then probably not too important, but if GPS then I imagine it could be.
     
  3. John2905

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2013
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Hertfordshire UK
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    DJI Visio suggests only necessary if some distance like changing time zone!
     
  4. Sokol

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Fairdale, Ky.
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    That's what I was told by a DJI service tech.....he specifically said time zone distance unless you were going someplace with possible interference like power lines, cell towers, etc.
     
  5. DaveTown

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2013
    Messages:
    124
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    South Jersey
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    A "time zone distance" could mean 500 miles (1000 mile wide zones) or just a few miles, depending on where you live. So, can somone quantify just how far we are talking about?
     
  6. dkatz42

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2014
    Messages:
    165
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    New Mexico, USA
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    Presumably this is about compensating for magnetic declination (how far off magnetic north is from true north). If you look at a declination map, you'll see that the lines are closer together as you go toward the poles. In the US, up by the Canadian border it changes about twice as fast as here in the southwest. For what it's worth, around here you have to move east or west over 100 miles to get a one degree change.

    On the other hand, there are places where compasses read quite far off, due to things like iron ore in the earth, so you probably don't have to move very far there to throw things off.

    So all this tells you very little, but I'd be comfortable going 100 miles around here without worry. You can always check a declination map and see how rapidly things change in your neighborhood.
     
  7. OI Photography

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2013
    Messages:
    5,542
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Clarksville, TN
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    So taking it across extremely long distances is the only way the Phantom compass can lose calibration?
     
  8. ladykate

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2014
    Messages:
    994
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    Bellevue, NE
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    My experience with compasses in other endeavors shows that a few hundred yards can make a difference. I do the dance whenever I go to a new place. My common launch points are my house and a park nearby. I calibrate at both places. I have no idea if there is a difference but it only takes a minute to calibrate - can't see it as a big restriction but can see it as a comfortable insurance.
     
  9. EMCSQUAR

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,692
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    N 44.895 W 93.354 Minnesota
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    I do it after any modifications and if I see a weird drift or handling characteristic upon take off. (Never know if it's been close to a magnetic source in transport) I've only had to do it maybe half a dozen times in 6mos/100+ flights.
     
  10. Gizmo3000

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2013
    Messages:
    1,859
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Sherman Oaks, CA
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    LOL! :lol:

    Yup,. there seems to be two different camps out there,. there's the guys who do the compass dance religiously every time they go out and fly..

    and then there's the sensible folks who don't. ;)

    I've flown for over a year without any incident, and have only done the dance a handful of times.
    - I even forgot to do so when I drove 100 miles away , and experience no ill behavior.

    Even if you drive hundreds of miles away, the only effect you might have is a Phantom that flies a bit crooked in flight.

    of course, if you've done some alteration and you fear your compass might have been affected by being near a magnet and such, it might be a good idea to do the dance. (especially if you've gotten compass errors messages)
     
  11. gbshovel

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Messages:
    212
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Conneaut Ohio
    Re: @@@ How far away before new compass calibration needed @

    Hey some people like to dance ! I drove to camp a couple weeks ago.... 150 miles from home and didn't think twice about recalibrating. No error lights and it flew without issue.