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Lost my FC40 for 8 long minutes. Lesson learned...

Discussion in 'Phantom FC40 Discussion' started by Oliver84, Jul 4, 2014.

  1. Oliver84

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    I just learned a very good FPV lesson today. I'm a beginner and this was the first time that I couldn't see, hear, or know where my Phantom was for an extended period of time.

    I was flying around in a new area and took my Phantom out of sight to go "explore" a bit. I was right about at the limit as I could see the video starting to glitch a bit. I took it down to take a closer look at something and the video completely cut out. I didn't worry too much as I knew I had video feed a little higher so I just brought the quad up a bit. It didn't reconnect. I started to walk towards where I was filming and brought the quad up a bit more. Still nothing. I was right in the place I had lost contact and I couldn't hear or see anything. I sent the quad towards home (with Home Lock) as I knew my batteries were getting low but I still didn't see anything. I figure it must have had "fly away" and that I had lost my quad.

    Suddenly, the video feed connected again! The quad was like 500+ ft in the air! I couldn't quite tell where it was but I knew I had sent it way too high (I know a lot of you fly much higher but I've just flown this thing a few times and haven't gone much higher than that yet). I brought it down and sent it home again but the video cut out again. I was afraid it wasn't going home because I was close enough to home to connect but couldn't. I searched the skies and ran to the home location (batteries but be close to fail safe right about now). There I finally heard the wonderful sound of those rotors spinning in the air. I finally caught a glimpse of my Phantom hovering about 20 feet from the home location! It was descending because of the battery and I safely crash landed in a patch of grass near the home location.

    Doesn't sound like much now but for those 8 minutes, my heart was pounding like crazy! I know some people have have had worse with fly aways but man what a lesson learned. I'm definitely not going to test the FPV limits by my self again. You're technically not supposed to fly out of line of sight, but if you're testing the limits, always have a spotter!
     
  2. Beario

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    Rejoice my friend as you and I have gone to the edge and back :lol: I cannot tell you how many times I have gone out on control range and heard nothing for a few minutes, only to hear the beautiful buzzing overhead and know that the quad came back home. If can be very nerve wrecking to wait on that return to home, but it works. Just make sure it has enough satellites and has that home location locked and you are good. Also make sure you give yourself enough battery for the return trips! :shock: Take the wind into consideration as if it is going in the opposite direction you WILL be fighting it on the return trip and eating up battery fast. I find that if I am up high I can go further. The antenna mods were the most useful as I can go further. The FC40 is a good bird, as long as you do everything the right way, you do not have to worry much :cool:
     
  3. kitari

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    I had that happen to me while flying over water before. I looked down at the screen and noticed the video feed froze and when I looked up I didn't see or hear it at all! Luckily I had plenty of battery life left so I just brought it up a bit and turned off the remote. Took it a while before I could hear it coming in and finally made eye contact with it as it started to decend. I ended up getting great shots though. RTH can be a real life saver at times, especially if you live in the middle of the forrest where everywhere you look it's just miles and miles of trees!
     
  4. Clipper707

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    I love this story because it has happened to me so many times. She always comes back, like a good dog.
     
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  5. dtitus6297

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    We've all been there at least once....if u havent, Ur not enjoying Ur phantom enough.
    I lost mine from the wind picking up to 30 mph from 10 mph. At full throttle my phantom was barely coming back and almost looked like it was sitting still on fpv view. It was out about 1200 meters too. She went down from low battery and I had to go and get her. That was a long 25 or 30 minutes. When I got it back the battery was down to 7 volts or so and the props were all dirty cause it tipped over on auto land. No harm done tho, that tough stock battery has been fine even since being well over drained. I don't notice any less flight time than my other batteries. Those are some tough lipos
     
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  6. Beario

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    Try UAV forecast before you go out ---> http://www.uavforecast.com/

    I use it every day I go out now just because of that very situation. Ideal winds in my opinion are 10 MPH or less, but I have recently been caught out there in 45 MPH gusts when I did not check the forecast. The wind here is tricky and can pick up in a matter of minutes. How does a Phantom handle going into 45 MPH winds? It does not, but luckily coming back the phantom's back was to the wind. I saw things I never saw the bird do before as I have never seen it fly so fast! Also I noticed on that high speed run that I also lost altitude and the shocker that made me let go of the sticks was the phantom flipped in mid air:eek: I let go of the sticks and it somehow corrected itself. Only using a little throttle I got it back quickly and I descended as slow as I could as the wind was pushing it all over the place even dropping fast at times. Once low enough I chased it down and grabbed the landing gear and turned off the motors. A few minutes later the wind was calm. Thats what I deal with in my area so this site is great. Hope it helps you out.
     
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  7. dtitus6297

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    I use uav forecast too, I find its not always accurate for gusts tho. I agree that 10mph or less is ideal and I don't usually fly in any more than 15mph. That's nuts in 45mph I couldn't imagine that...lol . I would have been panicking like crazy lol

    dji phantom fc40
    ardrone2 mod 4 telemetry+fpv
    tplinkwr703+sunhans 2.5w and alpha 7dbi panel antenna for wifi boost
    based in new jersey US
     
  8. Beario

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    I'm not sure anything can be totally accurate, but something is better than nothing. One minute it was 10 to 15 MPH winds, then within minutes it got crazy windy. Luckily for me it was blowing towards me so bringing it back was easier, well until that tailwind flipped the quad forward. Mornings and evenings are the best times to fly for me, so I've been flying then mostly.
     
  9. Matt Roper

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    Haha, just got myself an FC40 and probably will experience this and have a heart attack! Would love to see the video.

    I had a similar story with a cheaper drone, I flew it too high and the wind took it over the building I was next to, I spent the next 40 mins walking around revving the propellers until I finally heard it on top of a set of flat roofs. it stayed up there overnight until I hired a roofer to retrieve it next day!
     
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