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How much to charge?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by dysan911, Apr 15, 2015.

  1. dysan911

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    A little background, My mom invited me out to a nearby farm where she boards her horse. She shared the video I made of the property with the owner who happens to also own a construction business. He expressed great interest in hiring me to survey some job sites of his but I have no idea what the going rate would be for a service like that. I was curious what folks thought, hopefully its not frowned upon.

    Thanks!
     
  2. tcope

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    Well, the FAA frowns enough on it to consider it illegal at this time.
     
  3. dysan911

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    I thought I read recently that the FCC is easing up on those restrictions and that I can apply for a waiver of some sort.

    https://www.faa.gov/news/press_releases/news_story.cfm?newsId=18295

    As of March 23, 2015, the FAA will automatically grant a "blanket" COA for flights at or below 200 feet to any UAS operator with a Section 333 exemption, provided the aircraft weighs less than 55 pounds, operations are conducted during daytime Visual Flight Rules (VFR) conditions and within visual line of sight (VLOS) of the pilots, and stay certain distances away from airports or heliports.
     
  4. SteveMann

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    Well, yes, tcope, the FAA does consider it a violation. But hundreds of small drone operators do this every week. Many advertise it on their website. The FAA has not yet prosecuted a violation against a single drone operator for commercial use. Not one. Some drone lawyers will tell you that that's because the FAA has no rule prohibiting it.

    How much you charge depends on how much work is involved. Do you just fly and hand him the unedited footage or edit it and set it to a background music, add annotations or tites and narration?
    Figure out what your time is worth and how many such flights you want to pay for the equipment.

    Here's a better idea. Google this: "photographers rate calculator" and you will get a whole lot of advice.
     
    Glassman likes this.
  5. Meta4

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    You don't have a Sect 333 exemption though - hardly anyone does because they are hard to get.
    But as Steve says .. fly safe, don't attract attention to yourself and you'll be fine.
     
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  6. SteveMann

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    Dysan, the link is to the Small UAS NPRM that would establish rules for operating a small UAV for commercial purposes. Anyone who plans to fly their drone commercially should read and comment on the NPRM before the April 24 deadline.

    The blanket COA (Certificates of Waiver or Authorization) is for operators who have a Section 333 exemption. To get the COA you first must get the Section 333 exemption, and to-date all 333 exemptions require the operator to hold an FAA issued pilot's license. The FAA has been issuing more 333 exemptions, but their process is still slow and the backlog of applicants grows faster than the FAA can process them.
     
  7. dysan911

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    Thank you guys for all this information!. I will certainly take your advice Steve and thank you for explaining the COA / Sec 333 stuff. I thought I understood they no longer required a Pilots license, that you could just get some sort of Cert. Ugh its all too confusing though as I should expect lol.
     
  8. SteveMann

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    When the FAA releases the Part 107 rules for commercial use of small UAS aircraft (2016 is possible, but 2017 is more likely) you will be able to get an operator's license by passing a written test. Also in the NPRM is the definition of a Micro class which the Phantom would qualify for. To get an operator's license in the micro class would only require the applicant to sign a statement that "I know what I am doing". There's some pushback to the self-certification, but a lot of support for the micro class.

    Seriously, if anyone is planning to ever fly your phantom for commercial use, you have to read and comment on the NPRM. The AMA is *not* your friend in this case. They have badly bungled the response to the NPRM. (Yes, I am an AMA member).
     
  9. msinger

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    I have one. It's actually a fairly easy process to follow. Some parts are quite time consuming though.
     
  10. Meta4

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    Requiring a private pilots licence makes it hard (and expensive) to get for anyone that hasn't got one already. To say nothing of being near 100% irrelevant.
     
  11. msinger

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    Agreed on the irrelevant part. You do not need a pilot certificate in order to get an exemption. It will certainly be required in order to fly commercially though.
     
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  12. TuckNRollMedia

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    Hi guys,

    I LITERALLY just joined this site - mostly to reply to this thread as it pertains to exactly the kind of questions I've been having. I've been in video production for 17 years now. I just recently purchased my very first drone, the Phantom 2 with the Zenmuse gimbal for the GoPro H3 and an FPV setup. I originally found this post because I was curious about what to charge (and I still am, by the way) but based on the most recent parts of this conversation, I had to jump in with some questions of my own.

    Right off the bat, I have to say, I LOVE THIS FREAKING THING! I am as excited about this as I was the when I had just finished editing my first ever tv show. I just purchased my Phantom about two weeks ago and I already have THREE brand new clients who want me to film for them, and another two on the fence. Mostly they are Architects & Commercial Real Estate Brokers/Property Managers. This is potentially a HUGE moneymaker for me.

    Secondly, to MSINGER, I specifically wanted to talk with you. I am having the hardest time understanding the Section 333 guidelines for flying commercially. I think it would be absolutely invaluable for anyone wanting to make a living in video to get this certification/exemption and here's why...

    I have been around long enough, especially in video production, to know that if it takes a certain certification to fly LEGALLY and SAFELY, you should do it regardless of the cost or the time or the effort. Because later, you won't feel like a sneaky drug dealer, constantly looking over your shoulder for the FUZZ while trying to get work done for your clients. That type of (let's just say it) lazy mentality removes the fun of the job and distracts you from doing your best

    When you have this certification/exemption, if anyone tries to bother you, you just say "I have my Section 333 exemption, thank you!" or "I have my government license or my permit"....whatever. Let me tell you, the comfort level between the two is LIGHT YEARS apart.

    So long story short (too late!) what I would really like is to get with you, MSINGER, and go through the steps of getting the exemption. Because the other thing I understand is (and this goes back to the lazy mentality thing) the harder it is to actually get the exemption, the fewer people that will be doing it, and that makes it even more valuable to me. If I'm one of only three local people who have this certification, I won't have to struggle so hard to get work. Work will come to ME! And job security is the BEST feeling in the world when you own your own business as I do.

    Sorry for the long post, guys. Really.
     
  13. msinger

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    The steps to submit a petition for exemption are listed here:
    https://www.faa.gov/uas/legislative_programs/section_333/how_to_file_a_petition

    Here are some other things you'll need to do in addition to the petition:

    - Register your Phantom with the FAA (AC Form 8050-1)
    - Reserve an N-number (see http://aircraft.faa.gov/e.gov/NN)
    - Submit a bill of sale to the FAA (AC Form 8050-2)
    - Submit a notarized Affidavit of Ownership for Amateur-Built Aircraft to the FAA (AC Form 8050-88)
    - Get a private pilot license (a recreational or sport pilot license are accepted too)

    These additional steps are not required in order to get an exemption. They will all need to be completed in order to use your exemption though.
     
    #13 msinger, Apr 17, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2015
  14. Meta4

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    Don't think that only the small number of 333 holders will be doing drone work. There are hundreds (at least) out there flying below the radar and not drawing attention to themselves.
    Because the FAA has only started granting 333s in the last few months and the conditions (pilots licence requirement) are so unrealistic, plenty of operators are simply ignoring them.
     
  15. msinger

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    Very true. However, this only works if both you and your client are both okay with not following the rules/law. In some industries, that is simply not an option.
     
  16. TuckNRollMedia

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    Larger clients don't want to hear that you don't have a legal right to operate your gear. In fact one of my other, large corporate clients required a contract as thick as my thumb just to be considered to work for them as a reliable vendor. They still require a smaller contract for each and every new project I work for them. If I ever flew for them without proper documentation and they found out, I would never work for them again and my reputation over time would slowly decline.

    MSinger - thank you for the info!
     
  17. TuckNRollMedia

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    OH! And I forgot to mention something else, too. Didn't I read that the FAA is going to be making a decision about the drones for commercial flight coming later this month? I think it was specifically going to be aimed at regulations for commercial drone fliers.
     
  18. N017RW

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    In a recent podcast I listened to, a 333 holder was interviewed. He wrote the L.A. FSDO to inquire about the obvious use of drones by the media and other commercial ventures.

    The 333 holder said the gist of the FSDO's response was that that office [LA] required a complaint, a witness, and proof that the footage was taken with a drone sUAS, etc. to investigate. Not always easy to do!
    He also warned that not all FSDO's may be operating in a similar fashion.
     
  19. msinger

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    N017RW, it's obvious that most people are not going to be fined and/or prosecuted by the FAA. The number of people illegally flying commercially mostly likely far exceeds the manpower of the FAA.

    Even though, skirting around the law does not make it legal. And, as TuckNRollMedia pointed out, clients will blacklist you in some industries. At that point, you probably won't be able to find any business -- even, if you do get the proper exemption later.
     
  20. Rothgarr

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    This thread has been an interesting read.

    But it sounds like (for now at least), that you still need a pilot's license to obtain FAA blessing for commercial use for small quadcopters? I'm not talking about movie studios and Amazon, I'm talking about what 99% of do (small jobs).

    I, too, was under the impressions that within the last month or two there was a process for non-pilots to get certification...