Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

Preprogram path backward?

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by kirkdickinson, Oct 14, 2015.

  1. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    I want to shoot a herd of cattle being driven down a twisty country road. I have tried going ahead of the cattle and flying my P3P backwards in front of the herd with the camera pointed at the cattle. The best shot is about 6-8 feet off the ground about 20-50 feet out from the front of the herd.

    I am inexperienced, but this is really difficult to do on a twisty road where there are trees overhead and power lines that cross the road occasionally.

    I haven't yet explored the waypoints or any of that stuff. My question is:

    Can I map the road and have the P3P fly backwards at a speed that I decide? If I could do that, I could pre program the location, then I wouldn't have to watch for trees, powerlines, aim the camera, and keep it ahead of the cattle all at the same time.

    If this is something that can be accomplished, then I will have to get in there and learn all about it.

    Thanks,

    Kirk
     
  2. msinger

    Approved Vendor

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2014
    Messages:
    18,925
    Likes Received:
    5,573
    Location:
    US
    Yes. That's a perfect use case for waypoints.
     
    kirkdickinson likes this.
  3. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    Thanks, guess I need to do some reading.
     
  4. Tony Perry

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2015
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    70
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    You could also try your hand at using IOC Course Lock, This will allow you to fly it as if it were facing away from you, regardless of the direction that the front of the craft is pointing.

    Another option would be to use follow me. Stay in front of the herd and have the camera pointed backward. Im not sure if the DJI Go app will let you drop the phantom down this far after you start follow me, but its worth a shot. I'm pretty sure Autopilot will let you do this.
     
  5. Cerone

    Joined:
    May 1, 2015
    Messages:
    237
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Is there a minimum altitude for waypoints? That may cause a problem as 6-8 ft isn't very high.
     
  6. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    The follow me sounds like something I can try. I am going to play with the waypoints first though because there are some areas that have trees over the road and the stupid power company couldn't decide which side of the road to put their lines on, so they go across the road every 200-300 yards.

    I have watched several tutorials and don't understand a couple of things about the waypoints.

    1. Does it save the orientation of the P3P in the waypoint setting? (I would guess not.)
    2. If I want to control and monitor the speed at which it goes from waypoint to the other, do I set it to "Free"?
    3. If I set it to Free, what control will I have? Will forward and back control the speed or will it control toward or away from the waypoints?

    Thanks,

    Kirk
     
  7. lotusteve

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2015
    Messages:
    586
    Likes Received:
    135
    Location:
    sheffield uk
    Do some practice runs using wayponts in the dji go trainer mode.
     
  8. Tony Perry

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2015
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    70
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Free just lets you rotate the craft and tilt the gimbal. It will fly the waypoints at a fixed speed and afaik there is no adjusting it during flight.
     
  9. tcope

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2015
    Messages:
    3,516
    Likes Received:
    1,387
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    You can adjust speed during waypoints to stop and even reverse but it will not move off the track. Using the Go app, you have to pre fly the route before you can fly. You also cannot set a way point under 30 feet. I don't think waypoints is what you want. As mentioned, I'd use home lock or course lock for this type of purpose. You can find many videos on how to do this.
     
    Tony Perry likes this.
  10. Tony Perry

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2015
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    70
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Very cool, I didn't realize you could do this...Awesome!
     
  11. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    Course lock would confuse the heck out of me. I have been flying a toy drone and have had experience with RC cars before. I am very used to stick reversal when something is coming toward me or flying in other orientations. This course lock looks like something to make it really easy for beginners.

    I watched a tutorial where a guy flew by a castle and kept the same heading and rotated to keep the castle in view. I can see how this might be useful in some shots like this.

    I am really not sure how this would help me fly down a twisty country road backward and keep focused on the cattle? The road is twisty and there is no way to maintain 100% visual on P3P while keeping ahead of the cattle.

    Just watched another tutorial about home lock, that is a cool feature, but I still don't see that helping with what I want.

    It may be that I just have to practice a lot on that road and have someone drive me on the quad while I hand control it.
     
  12. happydays

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,846
    Likes Received:
    655
    Location:
    Warrenpoint, Ireland
    Follow me probably won't work for you. Here's a test I did with me on a bicycle at those sorts of distances and it couldn't keep up.

     
  13. candubob

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2015
    Messages:
    89
    Likes Received:
    21
    You guys are over engineering this. For 6 to 8 feet off the ground just use a camera with stablizer mounted on the back of a pick up or just hold the p3 in the back of the pu and shoot.
     
  14. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    My plan was not to strictly shoot from the road but in certain areas shoot right along the road but then go up and shoot a shot higher up from a hill looking across the road down into a valley... the kind of shot it only can be shot with a Drone.

    I am getting better at flying it. I'm thinking that if I do five or six trial runs along this road before we run the herd of cows that I can manually shoot it.
     
  15. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    I did play with the course lock some today and that is going to be really cool for certain shots I don't think it will work on the road thing though.
     
  16. candubob

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2015
    Messages:
    89
    Likes Received:
    21
    How fast is the herd moving and how wide is the road.
     
  17. kirkdickinson

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    23
    Herd is not moving any faster than a human walking speed. Don't have mile-per-hour guess.

    The road is a dirt road in the country that is no more than 30 feet wide from fence to fence in places. And some of those places there are trees hanging over the road.

    I have hit one of those trees or at least a small branch enough to knock the drone out of the sky. Almost had a cow step on it.
     
  18. candubob

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2015
    Messages:
    89
    Likes Received:
    21
    Way point will work. Just make sure you set up your home point from the lowest point of your path.
    Definitely get a spotter.
    You may have to do multiple pass or multiple cameras.
    What is the total distance and time to cover distance.
    Follow me is not good since accuracy of GPS among trees etc will not be good enough. It is only good for shots far away and in the clear.
     
    kirkdickinson likes this.
  19. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,934
    Likes Received:
    1,105
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Waypoint auto navigation is not accurate for what you might need. There was a report on multirotorpodcast.com that warned of this with the GO app on an Inspire. VPS does not help waypoint routing for low altitude routes as you need. I suggest you ride in the back of a truck, fly backwards and definitely use a spotter. Sounds like a fun shoot, I wish I was nearby to help.

    Fyi, technically it's illegal to navigate a drone from a moving vehicle, but boats are ok. Since it sounds like you're in the country, it doesn't matter much.
     
    #19 John Locke, Oct 16, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2015
    kirkdickinson likes this.