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Maximum wind speed for flying?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by fly-catchers, Oct 21, 2013.

  1. fly-catchers

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    Overall what is about the windiness conditions MPH is it safe to fly? Where I live is a top a hill and even on calm days there is quite a breeze and you often get sudden strong gusts. Currently I check the average wind speed and weather conditions from the data from Weatherunderground which uses local weather stations.
     
  2. oldengineer

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    I'm in the same part of the world as you so I know what you mean...

    ...Basically I don't worry about the wind speed now, the Phantom just seems to love it.

    I did a test a about a month back, flew it in gale force winds, it was **** near vertical when trying to go against the wind.

    ...The main thing you need to compensate for are the angle of your GoPro and maybe knock a minute off your flight time due to extra battery drain.
     
  3. discv

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    Trust me- a Phantom will not fly against a gale force wind !!

    It's generally reckoned that it will not cope with gusts in excess of 20 mph

    Edit; DJI claim a maximum velocity of 20m/s. That translates to 22 mph or 19.4 knots.
     
  4. miskatonic

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    The Phantom has a max speed of 20 mph when it does not have a load. Get an Anemometer and do not fly in anything faster than about 12 knot wind. Anything more and you risk having your Phantom either blown around or blown away. Also don't fly in the rain.
     
  5. oldengineer

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    Trust me, I didn't expect it to work....like you say DJI quote such and such, but it did/does.

    ...The wind at the time was around 40 mph, many times I've flown in 20+mph winds....Don't have much choice where I live, lol, it's right on the coast.

    ...Not saying its brilliant flying in bad winds, its not, just saying I have confidence now, which I didn't have, before I carried out the non-destructive test it.

    The gopro photos don't prove much, other than the phantom was **** near vertical when it took them.
     
  6. discv

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    I thought we might just being interpreting the word 'gale' loosely.
    To be clear- are you stating as a fact that your Phantom can oppose a 40 mph wind. If so, you have a one off machine!
     
  7. baja5b-ss

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    If the phantom can only fly at 20mph and winds are 40 then it will be impossible for it to travel into the wind, the wind will take it away.

    sent from a GS4 using tapacrap
     
  8. The Don

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    I also enjoy flying kites. Too windy for quad? Kite!
     
  9. baja5b-ss

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    What happens when you let the kite go?? If you've every flown an RC plane in the wind then maybe you'd understand.

    sent from a GS4 using tapacrap
     
  10. The Don

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    Why would I let the kite go? It would likely fly away, I suppose. Maybe I need a Garmin GTU 10 for kite flyaways.
     
  11. mindbend

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    Up to 10mph seems fine in my experience. 10-15 mph is doable, but harder to control for subtle movement. 15-20 is pushing it. Just yesterday I had to film a music video on a beach with winds at least 20mph. It was nerve wracking. I was using an FPV Phantom with the Zenmuse gimbal. The gimbal did an admirable job, but there's only so much you can do when the wind is that strong. Also, I had a very difficult time getting my camera moves to be accurate. 20 mph is the top end of what I'm willing to fly in.
     
  12. diomark

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    There's been a few times that I've flown in extremely high winds (20mph)and almost lost mine...

    I fly from my back yard. And sometimes there is a strong wind higher up (I'm near the beach) that pushes the phantom away. A bit scary. My advise would be fly against the wind. Have it come back to you in the wind.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 4
     
  13. martcerv

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    Number 1 rule is dont fly in winds faster then your top speed otherwise its not coming back. Also on windy days dont take off downwind too far as you may not make it back into a strong wind before running out of juice. Best to fly into the wind and come back down wind but I dont fly gos mode much in stronger winds as it is speed limited somewhat.

    Fastest winds ive flown would be around 55kmh and this was very gusty so quite sketchy. My setups top speed with no wind is around 22m/s or 80kmh 50mph.

    With a bit of wind I have got speed to to 33m/s or 119kmh 74mph going by my osd. The same day winds were gusting to about 40kmh and coming back into it I was barely going over 10m/s and going full speed into strong winds I was also losing altitude.

    Unless you really want to have an adrenaline rush and are very competant flying in atti and manual mode best to not fly in winds much above 10m/s or 36kmh 22mph. Manual mode in very strong gusty winds is very sketchy too lol so above 35kmh I tend to fly mostly atti mode but the gps does a pretty good job hovering in faster winds.
     
  14. FrankB

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    I do the same as martcerv- if there is any doubt about whether it's too windy, I carefully fly the Phantom into the wind and make sure that if the wind is too strong and carries it back, I can grab it before it blows by me. This happened on the top of Whistler Mountain this summer.

    [​IMG]

    I wanted to take a picture of the inuksuk on the top with the chairlift and peak in the background, and so flew it into the wind, and then tried to rotate it to catch the right sun angle and take the shot. It was pretty windy, so when I tried to rotate it, the wind pushed it back towards me and I could barely control it. Fortunately, I was able to bring it down and grabbed it as it came by- otherwise, it would have blown past me and into the bowls on the lee side.
     
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  15. Peter Patricelli

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    FWIW....a stock Phantom is capable of AT LEAST 40-45 mph right out of the box IF YOU SWITCH TO ATTI MODE. Many here have clocked (and reported) 55 mph with onboard GPS but they are also using non-stock props. In GPS mode...yes...20 mph about max. Flip it into ATTI an the thing stands on it's side and suddenly has ATTITUDE. I suspect this is the difference in experience being reported. Having seen mine go, I am NOT surprised at what is being reported. Since my bird is primarily for video work and loaded down...and I am a wuss....I have not tried it yet in serious wind.
     
  16. hurseyc

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    I wonder if there's a difference in their ability to withstands winds for control vs. stabilization.

    What I mean is for fwd movement (for example), it will tilt X degrees in GPS and for ATTI it'll tilt x more degrees and that combined with maximum prop speed dictates speed or how much wind it can overcome

    But perhaps GPS stabilization doesn't have those limits and trying to stay in position it could tilt more degrees to fights that wind.

    I have nothing to back that up and don't even know if the idea is sound but I thought I'd throw it out there.

    Regardless, if it only can go X mph and wind is X+2, it's not going to be able to fight that.
     
  17. martcerv

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    The GPS speed limit is based on ground speed so it will pitch more in a strong wind. No wind gps I have seen doing between 10 to 12m/s. Into a bit of breeze it will still get to this sort of speed. Downwind it also slows it down a little so its definatly the safest way to fly in the wind still for most. Assume a stock phantom can do about 20m/s top speed and I dont know if the max pitch limit is the same in gps and atti but think most likely it is.

    With no wind gps mode trys to keep the max speed at 10m/s and same in the wind but as that is a ground speed off the gps. It will allow it to pitch more in gps mode inti a wind then with no wind.

    I just prefer to fly a little faster myself lol. Also if its pretty windy the only way to land without crashing is get into a hover and catch it.

    Flying in stronger winds is always going to be more risky and if flying gps mode try to avoid flying in areas that are tight and likely for your gps reception to drop down. If it switches from gps to atti mode in strong winds its a very different beast as you need to fight the wind yourself 100%.

    I remember one of the first phantom videos I saw, it was a comolete idiots maiden flight. Off a tall building in a city with 50mph+ winds. He took off and the phantom at full pitch was still going away from him. It ended up running out of battery a few kilometers away so ge was very lucky to get it back, I did search for the video again but never found it as he likely took it down.

    If your a beginner and not 100% confident flying it in atti mode in the same wind Id say dont fly. If you lose gps and need to fly atti back it will get away from you very quickly if you dont know what your doing without the gps to help you.
     
  18. Fdnyfish

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    I just picked up one of these Weatherflow Wind Meters to check wind here in NE Pennsylvania.

    It is small and accurate.

    http://www.weatherflow.com/WindMeter/

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wtp_ttT7p_o[/youtube]
     
  19. Peter Patricelli

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    Marty,

    "I dont know if the max pitch limit is the same in gps and atti but think most likely it is."

    You are suggesting that the max GROUND speed in GPS mode is set regardless of the wind....which would require a different, greater pitch if fighting a headwind. Interesting suggestion. It would make sense,,,when designing for ease of flying...to do that and still give one some security against having the bird blown away by a 20 mph gust. I can't answer that, but I will say that if flying fast in GPS...one shifts into Atti.....there is an instantaneous increase in tilt forward...and speed. THAT does not suggest or prove that the maximum potential pitch in GPS and ATTI is the same....or different.
     
  20. martcerv

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    From my flying with it in winds 30-50kmh I have found that, I did shoot some video in winds around 40-50kmh testing out my OSD. I had another camera worn on the headband but unfortunately at this angle it didn't record any of the speed info on my screen because the screen hood blocks the top of screen when wearing a camera on the head. I tried a few different methods to try and record my screen with a second camera. Chest mount worked ok but being low pointing up a little it had more sun glare and the LCD viewing angle is a bit poor at that angle. Headband avoids glare but sunhood gets in the way of the top third of the screen. I then mounted a camera on the LCD itself which gave a good angle but kind of blocks my vision of the screen with a camera in the middle making it quite hard to fly lol.

    Flying in the stronger winds was interesting as in GPS mode it would hold position and still fly in any direction, down wind it will also slow's itself down a bit though I didnt try full speed down wind in GPS mode. Into the wind I still was getting close to 10m/s in gps mode and this would have been a wind gusting to 10-15m/s. I did test wind speed in an interesting way get it into a hover with gps then let it go in atti and see what speed it gets up to. :mrgreen: Just wish that the camera actually captured the top of my screen but I remember this getting to around 15m/s with no stick input so likely wind speeds got up to 50kmh or so on this day.

    I did also find that flying into these sorts of winds head on manual mode was a bi^&$ to fly with it being knocked around real bad so I stuck mostly to atti. Atti mode at full pitch into the wind was still going ok but losing altitude slowly so I backed off a little as I was flying up to 1km away from me into the wind. Down wind I didnt ever really go full speed but still got it to 33m/s maybe a little higher with only very short periods of full pitch angle.

    I will try and dig out some of the footage to show how it fly's in those sorts of winds but its just a shame the headcam didn't work as well as I hoped. Seeing the OSD data gives a better indication of what was going on especially letting it drift in ATTI mode and then switching to GPS where it would still hold position fairly well. Even fly into a wind well above the preset GPS speed limitation of around 10m/s. It does make sense though as the only info the phantom has is gps data to hold position and max pitch angle set in GPS ATTI modes.

    My phantom is fairly heavily modified and though its heavy still has lots of lift, others will really need to get an idea of their setups max speed before tackling any winds. Seeing as I am pretty sure my top speed with no wind is around 23m/s or 80kmh I will fly up to winds at 50kmh but really wouldn't want to fly any stronger winds then that. You want enough speed in reserve to actually fly into a wind and strong gusts do have a habit of effecting the altitude hold quite a bit. If someone uses a heavy setup and regular props their total lift will be much lower and so they wont be able to maintain lift at the same pitch angles and this is what effects the top speed possible on a multicopter.

    I use the local weather station data to decide if I can fly or not, I try and make sure its not gusting much over 45kmh but we have had regular winds over 80kmh here the last few months so if I dont fly in wind id never get to fly.