Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

Phantom vision 2+ struggles in light breeze

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision + Help' started by Drone-on, Sep 28, 2016.

  1. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    My vision 2+ has been in several 'hard landings' or crashes now. So far, I have only had to replace a few blades and one gimbal ribbon cable, but the drone is now struggling to handle even a light breeze in GPS mode. I'm talking 4 to 6 mph here. It used to take 15 mph in stride, but now it virtually comes to a standstill, or even loses ground in a light headwind or cross breeze, and it really chews up the battery in the process. We're talking showing 15 minutes of flight time left, dropping to 1 minute of flight rime left in the space of 1 minute, and I'm not maxing out the control levers either. I can switch to ATTI and bring it back quickly, even recovering several minutes of battery life/flight time in the process. The IMU readings are all within bounds and the software says it doesn't require recalibration. It seems to hover fairly steady - maybe a small amount of hunting if there is a breeze. Where to start looking for the problem?
     
  2. Cobs

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Messages:
    405
    Likes Received:
    116
    Location:
    Cumbria, UK
    Have you tried a compass calibration before take off? Or the compass lead on the leg?
     
  3. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for your quick response! Yes, I calibrate the compass before each flight, and on the assistant software it shows as being within the acceptable range.
     
  4. crash1sttime

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2014
    Messages:
    926
    Likes Received:
    74
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    Sounds like one or more of the motors or ESC's are bad/
     
  5. Mako79

    Joined:
    May 16, 2014
    Messages:
    3,413
    Likes Received:
    567
    Location:
    Sydney Australia
    A few things..

    1. IMU calibration needs to be done if you have a crash.
    Find a levelled surface. Let the phantom cool for 1-2hrs. Then do the calibration the moment you turn on the phantom. Don't let it warm up or idle other wise the IMU calibration will fail.

    2. What are your GPS readings? 5-7??? You could have cracked the ceramic patch antenna. If you have, look at doing $4-5 4mm thick antenna upgrade.

    3. Does sat drop when you hit the record button?? If so, you may need to do the foil mod.
     
  6. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for that idea. I have done a little observational testing now and it seems to me that since it appears to fly without problem in ATTI mode, and since I hear no roughness or unevenness in the motors when I put them through their paces without props, that I can probably rule out the motors and ESCs...unless the ESCs are also involved in some of the computations needed to keep an even GPS course? I will need to check the motors out under load to be sure, but am in the midst of a few days of rain at the moment.
     
  7. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    #1. The IMU was way out after the last crash, but I re-calibrated it and all specs are within the normal range at the moment.
    #2. I seem to be getting between 7 and 12 satellites at takeoff, though it will be good to verify that again when I can get out again (raining at the moment- and for the next few days) I will also try to locate the patch antenna and see if there is any visible damage.
    #3. This I haven't noticed, but now I know to look for it.
    All good thoughts, thanks to both you and crash1st time!
    Maybe it is as simple as re-seating all the connectors on the board? I will try that while the weather is not conducive to flying.
     
  8. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Looks like you were right about the bad motors or ESCs. It seems to fly fine in ATTI mode, but when I am holding the Phantom and moving it from side to side in GPS mode with the props on, two of the motors get quite rough and wobbly. This is probably what is happening in a cross wind, and I guess that is what is eating up the battery.
    Thanks for helping me get beyond the 'brain freeze.'
     
    crash1sttime likes this.
  9. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    I did the re-seating of all of the connectors, and in the process moved the GPS cable up under the sticky shield so it would be away from the IMU etc.. May be picking up the satellites a tad quicker, hard to say, but there is no drop in the number of satellites when I hit the record button. Looks like I damaged two of the motors in a crash. Sigh.
     
  10. jwax

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2016
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Albany, NY area
    Check battery capacity also, or swap with a known good one. Maybe it isn't providing sufficient current to the motors to fight the wind.
     
  11. Drone-on

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Good thought, thanks! I did just get a 3rd party replacement battery a couple of weeks ago and was wondering about that possibility also. However, I noticed that one of the motor mounts is badly cracked while I was investigating to see about replacing one or more motors. I plan to try epoxying it back together first to see if that takes care of the problem.
     
  12. jwax

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2016
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Albany, NY area
    Have not had good luck with 3rd party batteries. You can find a genuine DJI battery for around $100. Noticeable difference in flight time.