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Lost my Phantom

Discussion in 'Phantom 1 Discussion' started by pierrelogic, Sep 26, 2014.

  1. pierrelogic

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Ohio
    I was flying in my normal location where I've logged probably 80 flights this summer and was in full control of the Phantom. Next thing I know I simply lost control. It was in ATT/GPS mode and doing fine but when I switched it to full GPS mode just to make a smooth return to where I was standing (like I've done countless times) something was very wrong. That's when it started it's unguided decent in a different direction as intended. I noticed that right away. I never lost orientation and never panicked. As it came down I did everything I've trained myself over and over to do to recover. Initially I tried to flip back into GPS/ATT mode and briefly gained enough elevation control that seemed to only leveled it off as it kept flying horizontal and to the right from where I was standing. As it was skimming a few yards over an apartment complex across the highway I tried to go into full RTH. At that point I lost it behind some trees, never to be seen it again. :( Hard to explain that helpless feeling. Spent the better part of the next three days searching the area. I'm pretty sure everyone in the complex knows me now as well as any politician. I may still be up igh in a tree near the sight because the leaves are still on. I may go back as the leaves start to thin. My curiosity is still fresh.

    After speaking with the local hobby shop explaining the fly characteristics I observed it appears I may have been a victim of a solar flare. Apparently others experienced the same loss of control in the area that day at the same time. When I lost sight of the Phantom I looked down and had a little over 3 minutes left on a fully charged battery when it started it's decent so it wasn't a low battery. I've got into a routine of checking each battery for full charge before using it.

    Bad news is I lost my Phantom, my Stella Gimbal and a GoPro 3. Good news is I've upgraded to the Phantom 2 vision plus. Guess my brief stay here in the original Phantom forum was pretty short lived.
     
  2. toorboy

    Joined:
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    Location:
    fife scotland uk
    sorry to hear about ur fly away man :s am new to this iv only had four flights
    in atti mode I was gonna try gps mode eventually but when
    I hear about this kind of thing it makes me afraid to even attempt it
    this is the first time iv heard about a solar flare doing something like this
    I hope u manage to find and salvage man
     
  3. varangian

    Joined:
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    I know the feeling, I had a similar experience on 09/19. It was a day with very high solar flare activity but I dismissed it as not being relevant. Maybe it wasn't the cause, but mine stopped responding just 20 meters or so from me and took off due north until out of sight. Nothing, including turning off the remote, had any effect on it. I bought a second one within the week, but still haven'y gotten over that feeling of total loss of control. At least this one now carries a gps tracker on it.
     
  4. FlyingRabbit

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    What GPS tracker do you recommend?
     
  5. varangian

    Joined:
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    I believe it's called a THK-102 or something similar. They are all over ebay and amazon. I didn't want something that required a monthly service fee because I'm not going to fly it year round and I also hate monthly fees. It came with two batteries, two battery doors(one with magnets), and a charger. Price runs from the low $30's to over $100 depending on where you buy it. They all look the same to me and I bought one for about $35. A sim card was $10 and is good for three months, renewable online, but I might not fly this one much in the winter so I'll renew it in the spring.
    It's been very accurate when I've tested it. Just call the number, hang up after it answers, and it will text you the coordinates, a link to Google maps, and the battery charge status. Click on the map link and it will show you where it is on the map. I wish I had it on my first one. I mounted mine under the fuselage just aft of the camera mount using velcro. To secure it in case it clips a tree branch or gets knocked loose, I put a zip tie through the handle shaped antenna and around one of the landing skid legs.
     
  6. maytrix

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    Just curious - did you try shutting off the motors?

    I had what could have turned into a fly away - I believe due to the compass needing calibration but I'm not 100% sure. It was also the first time I had my gopro attached to it (only used my contour camera in the past). Copter started drifting and I thought maybe the wind so I corrected for it, but then it really started to move and I was essentially fighting against it. Fortunately it was low and as it started to move so much that my fighting it wasn't working, I finally just put the sticks to the corners to kill the motors. It was under 10' off the ground and just dropped fairly gently.

    I got a new battery and calibrated the compass and flew again and had no issues this time.
     
  7. PhantoMax

    Joined:
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    Hi,

    I had a similar situation and lost my P2V.

    I don't believe that a solar flare can cause flyaway like this. Think about what should happen to all GPS driven devices all around the world every time there is a sun flare...boats going in the wrong directions, airplanes flying somewhere else, and so on.

    I think it's a Phantom's GPS issue that Dji would never admit.

    When you got the flyaway, did you notice if sats number displayed was blipping from ex. 8 to 0 than back 8 and so on?
     
  8. pierrelogic

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    Location:
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    Phantom 1.1.1 has no sat number indicator. ;)
     
  9. arizeda

    Joined:
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    sorry for the loss.

    If it was a solar flare affecting GPS, and you switched into ATTI mode, wouldn't that have re-gained you control as it doesn't rely on GPS?