Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

Phantom P3 not fit for purpose.

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by Ayrtonginster, Sep 20, 2015.

  1. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    So after reading all the information on stress cracks on the Phantom I was assured by the fact I haven't put the bird under continuous heavy load, never used rotor guards and flying in the UK never been anywhere near extreme temperatures that there would be no chance of stress cracks.

    I was wrong.

    I have owned my Phantom two months and flown 75 times - 11 hours 18 minutes.

    This is not acceptable!!!

    I read all the comments on strengthening and modifying the chassis but we shouldn't have to do this. The vehicle should be fit for purpose and if not DJI should be issuing a recall and issuing a replacement/strengthened chassis that is not going to catastrophically fail regularly.

    I think all the talk on modifications is missing the point. We need to make DJI take note by petitions, posting all over their Facebook and their forum.

    If we keep putting up with this standard of build quality we will keep getting it.

    I know it's a lot of tech for the money but it should have retailed $50 more and been designed to last. It's also dangerous the amount of failures that are clearly happening.

    I must add I love my P3a which is why I'm passionate it stays in one piece!

    Thoughts please......
     
  2. Kestrel24

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    2
    How many units do you think are showing signs of stress fractures?
     
  3. Mal_PV2_Ireland

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2014
    Messages:
    2,589
    Likes Received:
    1,230
    Location:
    Dublin Ireland
    It's an unfortunate problem that is happening with a small percentage of shells. My thinking behind it is that either the screws were tightened too much by a new employee or it was a bad batch of shells but I am sticking with my first guess. I reckon less than 3% are suffering this problem. I have always flown my phantoms like a crazy chimp and haven't seen any problems with my p3 so I can rule out active breaking or user error. Thus problem has only surfaced with the p3 because the P1, p2, p2v, p2v+ and fc40 never had this problem. Knowing dji this long if this happened to me I'd just be buying a new €70 shell and replacing it myself within a few days of ordering it online, receiving it and changing it rather than spending €25 on ups shipping and hanging to wait 10 weeks to send it off and be fixed. I'm sure they know about the problem and hopefully they have sacked the guy who doesn't know how to use a torque wrench IMHO. It sucks I know but that's what I'd be doing
     
    Homelock, Flyaware, bobomet and 2 others like this.
  4. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    A considerable amount. I have met three other P3 pilots in the UK and all have stress fractures. All under a year old.

    The fact DJI fail to cover the shell via warranty is in my opinion proof they know it's not up to the job.

    Not good enough!!
     
  5. Mal_PV2_Ireland

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2014
    Messages:
    2,589
    Likes Received:
    1,230
    Location:
    Dublin Ireland
    Hey calm down and don't shoot the messenger. They are covering shell fractures under warranty but you are looking at 8-10 weeks of down time. My reasoning is to just buy the shell and replace it yourself or go through the dreaded rma procedure. The choice is yours. I know what I'd chose
     
    Eddyfisher likes this.
  6. Mal_PV2_Ireland

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2014
    Messages:
    2,589
    Likes Received:
    1,230
    Location:
    Dublin Ireland
    I'm basing the 3% on a few things. The amount of members on all the forums against the amount of cracking reports. Out of 100 people in our Irish group there have been 2 reports so let's be generous with 5% per say. There are probably 5k active P3 members on this page and if you weigh up the amount of stress cracks it's probably about 1% having problems. I know this doesn't help you and I fully understand why you are so annoyed but a full recall is a bit unwarranted. I'm just giving you my advice as you asked for mate
     
  7. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    Sorry didn't mean for you to think my annoyance was pointed at you Mal, certainly wasn't Intended. These things aren't cheap and as I say three people not including myself that I know have fractures. You mentioned the shell is covered - is that a change in stance as it wasn't originally? Appreciate your input...
     
  8. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    Also Mal just realised I was replying to Kestrel not yours originally!
     
  9. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    Have to say though 5% to me is a massive amount, and those are the people that check. What about the ones that don't? If the likes of Apple brought out a new product and 5% were failing to the extent of destruction the consumer/press would have a field day. Also 5% of birds falling out of the sky due to failures will result in injury sooner or later, it's just a matter of time. I'd say the offer of a free bottom half with the required strengthening modification (which would be very easy) from DJI would be the most sensible solution. I don't see why we should have to pay and also if we were to purchase our own shells and make the change ourselves would we invalidate the DJI warranty?
     
  10. atki

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    61
    Mine started getting cracks that were noticeable after 50 flights. I back the active braking and now 50 flights on the cracking has not progressed.
     
  11. atki

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    61
    Actually that's 80 flights on and still no progression in cracks
     
    kylekruchok likes this.
  12. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    Interesting atki, have you done any physical mods to strengthen? Where are the cracks? Don't you worry the shell is compromised and that it could fail at any time?
     
  13. atki

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    61
    No mods. Cracking is in the regular place in the recesses of the two screw holes back from the four that fasten to the motors. I give the rear arms a light twist every now and then (no I'm not worsening the problem) and they aren't close to being compromised. I plan to send the p3 back when I have less time to fly but before the warranty expires
     
  14. Ayrtonginster

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    48
    Yes same place as mine rear black prop. With respect though I'd say your taking a risk. God forbid if you're Phantom failed in flight and hurt someone on its decent who's fault would it be from a legal perspective. I would suspect the liability would be on you if it could be proven you were aware of the fractures.
    If a British airways flight went down and on investigation it could be proven BA were aware of the fatigue and hadn't replaced the failed wing for instance who would be liable? BA or Boeing??
    I'm not trying to be confrontational or provocative it just appears a to me there are a lot of pilots just accepting this fault and making repairs or mods themselves which would definitely put the liability on the pilot instead of the manufacturer if there was a failure. Like we were saying earlier if this was a iPhone or An Xbox and 5% were failing then the consumer would demand the problem was sorted. I just get the impression this problem is just being tolerated which is why nothing is being done. The fact is this is such a critical part of the system (the rotor arms) that no risks should have been taken and with the amount of incidents I'm reading a recall seems like the only option (unless we continue to subsidise DJI's P3 design flaws).
     
    Fourprops, Mr.Spock and libertyflyer like this.
  15. atki

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    61
    I must have missed the part where I said I fly over people, I live in the country.

    Also like I said the cracking is only minor and I test the arms periodically. There's a bunch of other ways my device could fail and they are far more likely too.
     
  16. Axidrain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2015
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    20
    set the active braking to 70-75%. almost 100 flights no stress cracks
     
  17. atki

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    61
    I really think the active braking is the most torque rigorous activity on the rear arms. Not to mention the rear arm plastic is less sturdy than the front arms.
     
  18. Volkhard

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2015
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    83
    Location:
    USA, Florida
    So far I have not seen any cracks developed on my Phantom.
    The legal problem, in case something happens, is not an easy one, especially in the US where sometimes companies get sued sucessfully and have to compensate customers who didn't have any common sense. In how many countries the need exists to have a written warmin on a coffeecup, tell8ng the customer the coffee is hot....DJI should be a little nervous!

    If it is really a very insulated issue, DJI might consider to offer an exchange program, where they are shipping out a replacement Phantom. The same packaging could the be used to ship the compromised Phantom back. A Creditcard hold could be established until the faulty Phantom is back in DJI hands and it has been confirmed it is a valid claim. If it is, the customer is free of charge for the replacement and both ways of shipping. If the claim is unwarranted the CC is charged with a fair amount for the replacement (minus the value of the sent-in Phantom) + shipping both ways.

    DJI would end up with a bunch of Phantoms that could be reconditioned (new shell, calibrating, testing, resetting to latest FW) that would be used as replacements for such action. They start with a couple of new ones until the reconditioned ones are abailable. This would a sensible, fair and low cost way for DJI to do business and step up to the plate. I am sure their ratings for customer service would improve dramatically! Perhaps they are watching this thread .....
     
    gfredrone and Daniel Voyer like this.
  19. Daniel Voyer

    Joined:
    May 25, 2015
    Messages:
    84
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Morin-Heights, QC, Canada
    I concur, Almost all Printer companies uses this protocol, it's very efficient with no down time for the customer. Thanks
     
  20. nickyb

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2015
    Messages:
    391
    Likes Received:
    97
    Location:
    Northern Hemisphere
    I agree with you 100%. I'm nearly at the point of buying my first drone, P3P and all this talk about stress cracks is worrying, not just because of the issue of replacing cracked frames, but what would happen is the pilot did not know of stress cracks, took it up and the motor ripped off, then the drone crashes, causing injury or damage to property? Who is liable?

    If it was a Boeing with cracks, all planes with that model are grounded, checked and modified accordingly? I know the Phantom is not a Boeing, BUT both use airspace, both are subject to CAA/FAA flying regulations and both can do damage if they crash.

    I got an email last week from DJI Support (Germany) and they said it 'only happened to a specific batch' and it would be covered under warranty..but not totally convincing by them.