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Newbie Report

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Buk, May 15, 2013.

  1. Buk

    Buk

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    Pretty sure this is old news and a many-times told story, but I had such an enjoyable first day.

    The Phantom arrived yesterday while I was out of town, but got home in time to start charging batteries last night. Easy task, except my fumble fingers struggle a bit removing the balancing connection from the charger.

    Today I got out the props and began balancing them. I had gotten the Du-Bro a few days ago and had watched some videos on the balancing process. Three of the four props needed balancing. I decided to use the CA method and had picked up thick and gel CA, plus the activator . I marked the heavy ends with a red a dot of a marker and place the CA on the light end, underside of the prop. I had a cardboard toilet paper tube that I cut into a 1" inch long tube and used the round of the tube to spread the CA evenly over the curvature of the prop. Gave it a spray of activator.

    I had what's called a headlight renovation kit for automobile headlights. It includes various grades of sandpaper and a foam handle with a velcro face to match the back of the sand paper. I sanded with the medium grade and then the fine and then super fine. Went back to the Du-Bro, sanded more, Du-Bro, sand more, DuPro and done.

    Put the landing gear on, taped the antenna and compass in place. Did the decals and installed the props.

    Drove to an aerodome, but it was busy, no place for learners. Found a church with a big field. Turned on the transmitter and put in a battery in the Phantom - that in itself is an art getting that all stuffed in. Waited for an eternity for the lights to give the right sequence and then did the circle around calibrations.

    Sat in a lawn chair, got comfortable and took off. Holy cow - - easy to use, difficult to master. Went through the first battery and many successfully landings. The second battery I got to do the walk of shame. I let it get too far away to see orientation and got up and started walking towards it, a block away and near at the church. A little hilly, so I lost sight all together as it headed downward for what I assumed was a crash landing.

    Found it in the grass, 10 feet from the concrete parking lot and a good 30 feet from the church. Lesson learned.

    Went through three batteries, tested RTH and considered the day a success. Thanks for folks on this forum providing useful information. Head out tomorrow to gain some more experience.

    Tonight I'll put on the "Reward If Found" sticker on the Phantom with my cellphone number.
     
  2. GearLoose

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    I'm waiting for my Phantom to arrive, along with a prop balancer. Could you tell me more about the "CA method" of balancing? I'm not familiar with the product but assume it is some kind of glue?

    thanks!
    Carl
     
  3. Gizmo3000

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    Location:
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    Sounds like you're off to a good start!

    Next you'll want to connect to your computer and run the NAZA to turn on IOC so that you can use HL to bring the Phantom back to you if you ever lose orientation.
     
  4. Darrell1

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    It sure is fun, isn’t it? Mine arrived about a month ago and I have been having just a blast with it. I have not yet crashed (knock on wood).

    Just take it slow at first. The only thing that will really get you in trouble is orientation. Always make sure green is in the back and red is in the front. When I was starting to fly, I used GPS to keep things stable, but I did not bother with CL or HL. Those can get confusing if you forget what mode you are in. And remember, as you start getting some distance away, depth perception gets very difficult. You can get in trouble that way too.

    Have fun!
     
  5. Buk

    Buk

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    CA = Cyanoacrylate = super glue
    At hobby craft stores there are two versions, "thick" and "gel". Due to the slow drying/curing time a product, CA activator, can be sprayed on it to speed it up. Once hard it can be sanded.

    Not sure I did it correctly, but I smeared some CA on the light side to make it heavier than it needed to be and the sanded off the excess to balance the prop.

    I'm sure the experts around here will explain a better method, something "standard operating procedure".
     
  6. Buk

    Buk

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    You are so right, at a distance when it is pitched to travel away or pitched to travel towards, the profile of the Phantom looks the same and it's too far away to know by sound whether it's coming or going. And you sure can't tell if it is going down in the trees or in front of them. So many lessons today.

    If I had a PC, I would be all over turning on IOC.
     
  7. Darrell1

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    Even when I use IOC, I always test it when it is close to make sure everything is fine before I get too far away.

    Get one of these to practice with. It is just as much fun (almost) and can really take a beating. Actually, sometimes it is MORE fun because you have no worries with crashing. :)

    http://www.amazon.com/Heli-Max-1SQ-Read ... ds=helimax
     
  8. Roadkilt

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    My suggestion, and I only say it because you didn't mention it, is to use a timer. It's incredible how fast time goes by on a loaded phantom and you don't want to panic, that's when the bad stories start to happen. Leave a minute or three on your battery, its good for them, and have a nice return to home.