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Panic attack... failsafe... 150' tree

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by GearLoose, Jun 12, 2013.

  1. GearLoose

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    Another day, another unnerving crash.

    Having barely survived a river crash (described elsewhere) I made two very conservative practice flights this afternoon to fully test the Phantom. Then, as bad luck would have it, a neighbor stopped by to watch. Trying to answer her questions while guiding the Phantom past a stand of tall trees was not a good idea.

    Multi-tasking with a multi-rotor is clearly not one of my skills.

    Having applied too much throttle, I zigged when I should have zagged. The Phantom shot behind the trees, climbing high and fast. Panicked, I ran through the pasture to regain LOS but ran instead into a fence. All I knew was that the Phantom was headed north -- and there's nothing to the north but dense forest most of the way to Canada.

    Rather than risk having the quad disappear I opted for Failsafe. In this case it was more like a suicide switch.

    The good news is that Failsafe worked. The bad news is that in attempting to return Home the Phantom didn't see the forest or the trees between us. It plunged noisily into the branches of a very tall fir. I heard it crash from branch to branch, all the way to the ground, props chopping away like a Cuisinart.

    Amazingly, the only damage was a broken battery door and seriously scuffed props. Everything else checks out fine -- no calibration required and the motors sound good. I'll rebalance the props and fly again (very cautiously) in the morning.

    Today's hard-earned lesson: always carry fencing tools when flying in or near livestock pastures.
     
  2. BruceTS

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    The obvious question.....Is she cute? If so we all now know why you lost control, wrong brain in control..... :eek:
     
  3. auck

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    +1

    :twisted:
     
  4. martcerv

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    The small brain half way down is not a very good pilot it seems. ;)

    Maybe the proper brain will learn from such mistakes, but just like the phantom GPS don't put all your trust into that as its likely to make the same mistakes in such situations repeatedly.
     
  5. Roadkilt

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    Should have used the razor edged pruning props!
     
  6. MRSpyder2U

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    Location:
    Rome, Georgia y'all
    Gear Loose -

    If this were a video game, under "Lives Left", the needle would be buried in the red. If the Phantom does a fly-away it will be in self-defense. :lol:
     
  7. GearLoose

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    First of all, I'm feeling kind of crushed by the sick jokes being made in this thread at my Phantom's expense. I expected heartfelt "Get Well" messages and maybe even offers of spare parts, not yuk-yuk-yuk.

    I felt so bad I had to go out into the meadow and try again. Only crashed three times, twice into a tree (not the same tree, two other trees) and once into the bushes.

    Even though my Phantom seems to be a real survivor I've decided that enough is enough! I found the perfect way to practice safely, with virtually no risk of a crash. It goes like this:

    1. Place the Phantom on a sturdy level surface indoors, such as a table.
    2. Place a laptop next to the Phantom.
    3. Remove the props and connect a battery.
    4. Go to http://youtube.com and search for "DJI Phantom long range".
    5. Turn on the Phantom radio and in ATTI mode, fire up the motors.
    6. Watch Youtube videos as you rev the Phantom's motors and fiddle the sticks.
    7. Log your tabletop flights, congratulating yourself for avoiding a crash.....
     
  8. BruceTS

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    Didn't mean to get ya mad, just thought it was funny the way events occurred... Sometimes laughing about it is best. As far as flying don't rush it, better to fly slow and precise, then attempting crazy stunts. I've been doing RC for many years, mostly planes, so going to a quad was an easy transition. Even then I still took it easy, practicing simple patterns, then repeating them. Once they become second nature, you won't panic when you have an oops moment.

    Try this, put 4 cones or some sort of markers on the ground, make a square about 8' in size. lift off from the middle of the square. then fly to each cone without rotating the quad hovering about a foot off the ground. Go clockwise several times, then counterclockwise, do this with the Phantom facing you then facing away. Then go from cone to cone turning 90 degrees at each corner, repeat this forward, then backwards. Once that becomes easy make more difficult patterns, but try and do them with precision, especially if you plan to do video work. Make a course to follow, maybe around the yard, between several trees then loop back, follow that course, slowly picking up the pace, keep running laps. The goal is not to crash...


    Still gotta ask..... Was she cute? :D
     
  9. auck

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    don't loose heart! most of us here are geeks or are otherwise pre-occupied. it's just amazing that a cute woman would want to know about this hobby. speaking for myself, i know what it's like to have something happen to my craft, so I was actually happy to know yours was built tougher than mine. don't be scared to learn to fly it. just find a good open space, like at a park. and next time when a cute woman stops to ask you questions about the phantom, flip it into gps mode and let it hover. :mrgreen:
     
  10. GearLoose

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    BruceTS... Her grandchildren thinks she is very "cute" ;)

    I'm not mad... in fact, just trying to poke you guys in the eye. It seems to have worked because your suggestions on setting up an obstacle course are exactly what I needed to hear. Yesterday I tried flying between a very small tree and the high bushes... landed once (gently) in the tree and chopped a few leaves on another pass but it was a good lesson, as it clearly indicated that I need a lot of lessons!

    I'll set up my obstacle course and see what happens.


     
  11. mmcbain

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    I know exactly the problem you describe. The sports field where I practice has a row of very tall [approx 30 metres high] sugar gums along one side. If I fly over them and lose signal,, Fail Safe is going to bring the Phantom back at canopy height, with exactly the effects you describe. I'd be happy if it just crashed to the ground and didn't get hooked, so I think you got lucky there.

    I think the lesson to learn here is not to panic. If it gets away from you, in GPS mode, just centre the right-hand stick and the Phantom should just come to a halt and hover. That gives you time to clamber over fences and listen for it, providing you don't have a low battery. If you have FPV, you can see what it is doing. If not, then push it up to a height sufficient to clear the trees, and bring it home slowly using Home Lock.

    Michael McBain
    Melbourne, Australia