Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

Piloting a Phantom from inside your car ??

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by TimmyG94, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    I know this sounds a bit weird, although I'm sure I'm not the first person to do it. Has anyone piloted their Phantom from within their car?

    I flew my Vision+ today on a balmy 18F day here at a local park. I didnt really feel all that enthused about wearing 2 layers of thermal underwear to stand outside to fly, so I decided to stay inside my toasty warm car and let the bird enjoy the nasty coldness on it's own. It worked well. I have a 2000mW Sunhans amp and pinwheel antennas on my bird so I was able to get it out to around 4,300 feet before my FPV locked up and I had to perform an RTH to get it back.

    The most obvious drawback is holding the controller up high enough so that the half-sphere antenna was able to point out the windshield at the bird. If I want to continue flying like this, I will need to come up with some kind of platform I can rest the controller on so my arms don't get tired holding it in the optimal position for a typical 15 min. flight. I drive a 4-door sedan that doesnt have much room to place the controller on the dash, so that idea is not going to work. I'm going to need to make a platform that rests on top the steering wheel since this is the most ergonomic way I can still manipulate the sticks.

    Anyone else try this?
     
  2. 4wd

    4wd

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2014
    Messages:
    2,532
    Likes Received:
    421
    Location:
    North York Moors
    I've seen a few videos where people have had it flying alongside or in front so clearly the signal can get through the glass reasonably well at close range.
    If you could operate with a window open on the sheltered side it seems perfectly reasonable to keep warmer that way and range ought to be hardly affected.
     
  3. locoworks

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2014
    Messages:
    471
    Likes Received:
    10
  4. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    Not sure what the advantage of sitting inside your car nice & toasty but then opening a window? Sort of defeats the purpose.

    But I agree that resting the controller on the driver side window sill would be a good idea.
     
  5. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    Just to clarify, I am NOT driving my car while piloting my Phantom. That would be ludicrous!

    I'm simply staying inside a parked car for the 72F warmth on a very cold day while still being able to fly my Phantom.
     
  6. 4wd

    4wd

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2014
    Messages:
    2,532
    Likes Received:
    421
    Location:
    North York Moors
    With the heat blowing on full, one open window would be tolerable for a few minutes.
     
  7. Hughie

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,477
    Likes Received:
    140
    Location:
    Leeds, United Kingdom
    Yes. Because there are strict rules about LOS :D
     
  8. HailStorm

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2014
    Messages:
    154
    Likes Received:
    2
    It would be more sensible to dress warmer and invest in a pair of transmitter gloves (http://www.acewingcarrier.com/ace-extre ... glove.html) than trying to fly from inside a parked car with its limited view.

    I just picked up an Iris+ from 3DR a few days ago. Anxious to see if it will follow me in the car once the weather clears here.
     
  9. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    Not to be harsh, but I hate when I see very simpleton responses like this. Shows some ignorance on your part.

    Who says I need a 360-degree field of view for every single flight? There are many times when I fly out in one direction and fly back along that same line. Limited view doesnt really affect a flight like this.

    You also never stood in 15F degree weather for very long, transmitter gloves or not. Even the slightest wind can cut through 2 layers of thermal undies rather easily. Frostbite is always a danger. Buying hundreds of dollars in Arctic-wear doesnt make a lot of sense for recreationally flying a Phantom, esp. when I already got a toasty warm car at 72F where I can sip a hot coffee in comfort while piloting my Phantom.

    Please try to put more thought into your responses instead of a simpleton answer like "just buy gloves".
     
  10. HailStorm

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2014
    Messages:
    154
    Likes Received:
    2
    I'm very sorry that my response wasn't up to your standards Timmy.
     
  11. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    No problemo.

    Just trying to help out other members in here. Simpleton answers don't really help complex situations, and just end up wasting electrons and electricity on the WWW.
     
  12. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    7,684
    Likes Received:
    3,419
    Speaking of ludicrous ... here's a Youtube tutorial on operating radio control while you drive
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=p ... TLXJcW3NYo
     
  13. Windy Pig

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2014
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    East Devon U.K.
    Hi Timmy,

    Perhaps you could rig up some kind of extension for your antennas and fix the to your vehicle roof with a suction cup or something like the guy has done in this video ( you can see antenna at about 6:39 )

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8bOJDLnBjU

    Cheers,

    Steve.
     
  14. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    That's actually a cool idea if I decide to keep piloting from inside my car. The only question I have is how much attenuation I will get with a long RP-SMA cable (6 ft. or so) that will need to extend from my controller (ie, Sunhans amp) inside the car to the antennas mounted on the roof. SMA is a standard that's been around for a long time for the HAM radio guys so I'm sure they have low-loss cable and maybe even inline signal boosters to compensate for signal loss.

    I might have to try this! :p
     
  15. PhantomFanatic

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2014
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    USA, GA
    Are we saying the driver's window needs to be open, to place the transmitter there? That would be difficult, trying to turn your upper body to the left when your knees are having to face forward. It sounds painful to me, but my body is old!

    If I did it regularly, I would make a mount that clips onto the steering wheel. You might as well make arm supports too.
     
  16. PhantomFanatic

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2014
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    USA, GA
    Speaking as a ham (since 1965) I don't think there would be any signal loss that would be noticeable. Your signal is already amplified anyway.
     
  17. TimmyG94

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    1
    I like the sound of that answer!

    :D
     
  18. MonsieurAnon

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2013
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    I've always wanted to film a car as I was driven around in it. I've thought about some cool gimmicks like opening the back door of a van while going down a quiet road, and flying Line of Sight. Unfortunately, there's a few logistical and legal issues to consider.
     
  19. Bear501

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2014
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    18
    Location:
    Arkansas
    I am interested in finding a way to fly from the car as well. I fly from mine now and just roll down the window and prop the controller on it and just turn my body sideways. It is uncomfortable sitting like that but I don't have much choice as I am a paraplegic and it's just easier for me to stay in the car. Of course I haven't flown in 18 degree weather yet but I have flown in cool weather and rolled the window down and kept the heater cranked and stayed warm. I think I have a way to do it, but just haven't had a chance to try it.
     
  20. sdtrojan

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2014
    Messages:
    394
    Likes Received:
    26
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    I have heard stories about guys who have their antennae mounted on poles in order to improve signals and range. Anything is possible, and only limited by your imagination,