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Normal takeoff?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by radioguy, May 22, 2013.

  1. radioguy

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    Just getting started here...is it normal for the Phantom to "pull" either to the left or right on take off? I was under the impression (based on the You Tube videos) that when you ran up the throttle, the unit would go straight up. I've been told that it's not unusual for one side to pull, and that the best way to achieve flight is to gun the Phantom (ie, take off quickly) so the ground effect doesn't screw things up.

    Fred in Houston
     
  2. pwright

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    Gunning it may be a bit extreme and is harder on the airframe. I would say decisively lift off. :cool: Don't try and ease it off the ground but don't just hammer the throttle either.
     
  3. GeneL

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    I've had my Phantom take off both ways, straight up nice and easy with a good hover,or tipping to one side - and also drifting off after takeoff. I can say now, after having flown for awhile (but definitely far from an expert Phantom Pilot) that every time it has not been able to take off smoothly and straight up, it has needed some tending with the Assistant or other calibration. There are exceptions, of course, such as wind and an uneven takeoff surface.

    I don't think I'll get much disagreement with this advice - please get thoroughly familiar with how to maintain your Phantom with the assistant, what it is telling you about the state of your Phantom, and how to do compass and TX calibration. Then, check your bird out with the Assistant often to make sure things haven't gotten out of whack.

    I'm new at this, so I have learned to appreciate the instructional videos on DJI's site. There is one toward the last of the list that shows how to calibrate the "brain" of the Phantom. However, there are other maintenance issues you need to be aware of that can be found in the printed materials, or here in the forum. I've gotten so that it isn't fun flying without being confident that I've done everything I can to check out the health of my quad before sending it up.

    I hope this helps.
     
  4. radioguy

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    Well, fast forward to Christmas Day 2013. After charging up my battery, and putting new AAs in the controller, I decided to take the Phantom out for a spin and see if I could actually get it up and running (having not used it since May). After letting it cycle through, I'm getting one green, then five more greens in rapid succession.

    With the GPS on, I lift off. The unit immediately starts hauling *** in one direction or another, and the only way I know how to shut it down is to lower the throttle so it does a "soft crash".

    So far no real damage, which is good.

    I'm suspecting that I did not install the propellers properly. I know in the videos it says to follow the direction on the blades and make sure they're matched up to the arm.

    But, on my blades, I have two embossed direction indicators. Each blade also has "DJI" embossed on one blade, and what appears to be a part number embossed on the other blade. The direction indicator next to the DJI goes in one direction, and the direction indicator on the other blade goes in the opposite direction. What's not evident (at least I haven't found it yet) is what do you use to determine if you've got the proper propeller on the proper motor? Or is it a case that the propellers need to be installed so that the indicators are on the bottom (facing the ground)?

    I can understand that they have to be right, and I think that's what's causing my problems in flight. But it's not obvious to me how to figure this out. Any suggestions?
     
  5. Bats

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    Those same circular arrow icons should be embossed on the arms of the phantom, out near the motors. 2 of each type, just play match up with the props.
     
  6. JTheed

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    I have the 2 color acorn nuts on my Phantom so what I did was mark the top of the 2 prop spindles with a black sharpie and also the center of the blade that goes there. The markings are hidden by the acorn nuts. You can also do this with the self tightening nuts too, you just have to mark the 2 spindles.
     
  7. Timtro

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    With the prop threads going in opposite directions on the current models I don't know how anyone could get the blades on wrong. One thing to remember is to let the bird "warm up" for about a minute to fully acquire GPS and so on. If you still have trouble with balance, try using the spare set of blades that came with the Phantom in case one or more of yours is bent or unbalanced.
     
  8. Davek

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    It definitely takes off like a pig when loaded up with a camera IMOH. I just got the greatluckbuy gimbal so it'll be more of flying pig with that added weight.

    Those 9" props are nice and do help with take offs. Not so much with landings.
     
  9. Peter Patricelli

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    Just be sure YOU are not causing the veer/tilt. When re-calibrating the "brain" in Assistant...be sure the bird is on a DEAD LEVEL surface....otherwise it will always fly/drift to one side in any flight mode except GPS...and will in GPS until the GPS "hold" kicks in.

    THEN...when preparing to fly, plug in the battery and immediately sit the bird down, FLAT and STILL while the brain initiates. Once the warmup is over you can then move and adjust, but not during. If not flat during that warmup...it will take off with a veer. If the Center of Gravity is way off (usually it is toward the front since most gimbals put themselves and the camera way up front in order to get the landing gear out of the FOV) it will take off tilting in that direction.

    In my experience a tilt on take-off is almost always one of those three issues. If it is a CG issue....due to camera position, most of us choose to live with that.
     
  10. radioguy

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    Update...today, after some false starts, I finally got the machine to actually fly, and I was able to control it (and not have it fly away to the point I had to shut down the throttle). It's going to take multiple trips to the field to get more and more comfortable with it, but that's the plan. I did notice it took several minutes to get a "long" green, followed by 5 more greens (in rapid succession). I presume that's the number of birds the GPS is seening. Once flying, the green blinked slowly and all seemed to be fine.

    I do notice that the battery doesn't seem to last long..I kept the rig fairly close to me so I could watch how it reacted to my controls, and it started flashing red more and more. I assume this is a "I'm running out of juice" warning which means get it landed asap.

    More to come tomorrow. Thanks to all who replied to my request for help!
     
  11. radioguy

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    Another update..this one not so good. Where yesterday things went well, today was more of the same problems. Bad liftoff, then when flying, went hell bent for leather away from me, and I had to shut it down. This time I sustained some minor damage. A broken prop guard, and some missing screws for the landing skids.

    Same problem as I've seen before..it tends to veer in one direction. Even if I run the throttle down without landing, it will continue to drift. This is completely opposite from my experience yesterday. Same conditions, same piece of land. I'm not sure what I did (or didn't do) but this is not good. I'll have to buy another prop guard and find some screws to replace the ones I lost somewhere in the filed when it crash landed.

    Oh well-if this was easy, everyone would do it.
     
  12. radioguy

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    I recalibrated the unit via the software, and the 5 blinking green lights are now gone. I just have one blinking green light (which I assume is "everything's normal").

    Now-to those of you who fly yours all the time-when lifting off, is it normal for the unit to veer off one direction or another, or does yours just go straight up and stay where you leave it?

    I'd like mine to do it, since I'm a newbie and I want to take things slow instead of trying to figure out how to get it to come back when it hauls *** in a direction I don't want.
     
  13. radioguy

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    In the case of a Phantom flying off from you, is it a accepted course of action to shut off the transmitter, and expect the Phantom to go through its "return to home" routine? (This is, of course, if all else fails, and you think you have no way to get it back and you have to move quickly.)
     
  14. Driffill

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    It's a 50/50. Some people will say yes, some will say not to . . .

    It's comes down to why the flyaway happend, if its because of a GPS error, than RTH isn't a good idea, keeping the control on and flicking to atti mode "should" regain the control . . .

    If its an interference issue, then turning the control off might help, or the interference might take "control" or it also??? In that case, hopefully RTH it triggered (by continuos signal 10sec long, or the GPS/ATTI channel doesn't fall into the correct GPS or ATTI range).
     
  15. radioguy

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    This just keeps getting better and better (and I don't mean that in a good way).

    After turning on IOC, so I could use the Home Locate function, I took my Phantom out to a sparsely populated area I've used for flights. This time, I turned it on and I got the Green/Red/Yellow blinking LEDs which, according to the maual, is the IMU initialization failure warning.

    I bring it back to the house, hook up the software and do calibration, but to no avail. Of course, calling DJI is useless (all I get there is a voice mail and a promise to call back within 24 hours). I'm going to pop the top off of the unit and see if there's anything obvious, like a connector coming loose. In case it's not, what's the groups experience been with these types of errors? Sent it back to a dealer or factory, or what?

    Thanks, and Happy New Year to all!

    Fred Morton
    Houston
     
  16. Davek

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    Hey Fred...... I am in no way an expert but I have about 50 flights on mine and have had several things go wrong.

    I'm in Austin and if you want, call me and we can talk about it.
    512-468-4300

    I don't mind posting my number.... I'm a realtor and its already all over the interweb!
    Dave
     
  17. Davis476

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    Sorry to hear about your troubles. I had the same problem when I got my phantom. and it turned out to be that the compass was installed on the wrong leg. The GPS was getting the bearings all wrong and was compensating in the wrong direction. If you can get a fairly stable hover in ATTI mode but drifting in GPS. you might want to check that out.

    Here is what it looked like for me: http://youtu.be/IjWkzVrgAGc
     
  18. Peter Patricelli

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    "I did notice it took several minutes to get a "long" green, followed by 5 more greens (in rapid succession). I presume that's the number of birds the GPS is seening."

    In order of CRITICAL IMPORTANCE.....dirtectly after "understanding what the controller sticks control and do"....comes "understanding what the rear LED FLASHING LIGHTS INDICATE!!!!!!!!! The bird is talking to you and telling you critical information as to it's internal status and appropriateness for flying, and/or what some of the settings your controller is in that might, or might not, be what you WANT! Your controller might have a switch accidentally flipped that puts you in a flight mode way over your head. It may also be saying..." DON"T take off because something is wrong!!"

    Your above statement is incorrect and indicates you have NOT studied the manual sufficiently....yet. No skin off of my teeth but the Phantom has a painful and expensive way of punishing those who think they can shortcut the learning process.
     
  19. CcrtAgntMn

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    Purchased a Phantom recently and love it. Totally hooked. One question. On take off it seems I have to push the throttle all the way forward just to ramp up and get the phantom airborne. Sometimes it will tilt forward but then corrects and lifts up. It almost seems like its struggling to get off the ground. Any help appreciated
     
  20. radioguy

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    Thanks much! I'll give you a call tomorrow while traveling to one of my transmitter sites.

    Fred