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Questions before first long range flight

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by Jamsta, Feb 9, 2016.

  1. Jamsta

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    1. What will I lose first, video or transmitter control?
    2. What messages will I see on the app?
    3. If I lose video feed, will I still have the map so I can turn around (and see that I am turning around) and start heading back home?
    4. If a message pops up that it is returning to home because of a battery calculation, I assume I can hit cancel and still turn back manually (or keep going a little further if I'm well over 50% and no wind to worry about)?
    5. If I lose transmitter control, I should see the red light on my controller as well as a message on the app, right? Auto RTH should initiate... right?

    Looking to go out 3 miles with clear LOS, over water, at about 300 feet altitude. No interference.

    Any other tips/pointers?
     
    NorthcountySD likes this.
  2. dirkclod

    dirkclod Moderator
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    Carry extra shorts :)
     
  3. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    1. Video signal
    2. Lost Signal
    3. Yes ... but radar display might be more useful
    4. Yes ... but safer is better in long flights over water - don't push it
    5. Yes

    You don't want to go out with more than a gentle tailwind on a long flight because that means a headwind return
    Watch the wind vigilantly.
    You know your P3 will travel at 15 m/s in still air - if you're making 10 m/s you should be able to factor that into your calculating.
    Remember that RTH cruises at a leisurely 10 m/s but you can drive faster yourself.
    Keep a big safety margin
     
    Chris Vedeler likes this.
  4. Benjamin B.

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    1. You should lose video before control.

    2. Hopefully nothing, but possibly weak video signal. When you see that, either raise altitude or wait for a few seconds to see if the channel re-adjusts.
    3. Yes, you can still fly by GPS map providing you are still in P-GPS mode.
    4. First long range flight? If the p3 determines it should return home, do not override it. Either cancel and manually return home or let it do it. Wind speed is a major factor here. Try to fly into the wind on the way out!
    5. If transmitter control is lost (not video) for 3 seconds, RTH is initiated.

    I just did my first two 2-mile flights. I would suggest stepping it out. If you have done a 1 mile flight, go for 1.5. Then 2, then 2.5, etc. You will learn what to expect.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
    Erroll likes this.
  5. Phantom751874

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    I wouldn't go out over water your first distance flight but that's just me some here will say it's safer or better but in my mind I wouldn't be able to get over the fact that if I did something wrong she'll never be seen again.

    You'll likely lose video first don't panic. If this happens it won't go into RTH. Point your antenna as best as possible LOS to the P3 remember antenna need to be parallel up and down on you controller like the antenna are on the legs of the P3 up and down, vertical, sky to the ground.

    If your still getting video feed problems then use the map to either push your luck and go further or to turn around and start to come home until you pick up video again. Personally I would turn around and head back.

    If you lose RC for more than 3 seconds then it'll initiate an automatic RTH, let it do its thing. When you think you might have RC control again, yaw your P3 and try the gimbal to test, then you can cancel the RTH and takeover from there. If your low on battery that is the thing to do in order to get back as soon as possible or find a safe place to land.

    I can't remember the warnings but one is "weak transmission" but you'll know what's happening as the video will start to flicker and go out or if you look at your map your P3 won't change direction when you yaw it.

    3 miles is somewhat easy even with the stock P3 and Controller especially over water with less interference around. It's when you get to 4 miles that the battery comes into play as you will have no time to mess around at 4 miles, you need to get out there and straight back. Losing RC signal can add precious seconds as RTH takes some time to get going. In RTH the P3 has to turn around then go up to the height you have it set to then it starts a leisurely pace back home. You need to intercept when you have RC control and line up a direct path home. You may need to be somewhat easy on the speed depending on your battery and the voltage you have left.
     
  6. Jamsta

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    Forgot to ask: what might you think is the recommended height for above water on a long distance flight? I was going to go at about 300' but might I get a better signal if I am lower to the water so signal can reflect off the surface of the water?
     
  7. Erroll

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    I agree 100% with the above, especially the bolded parts.
     
    Benjamin B. likes this.
  8. Erroll

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    I personally always try to launch from a slightly elevated position. I recently did a 5.3km run out to sea and lost video a few times but never had an issue with the RC signal. I flew between 200 & 300 ft ASL. (See HD link: HealthyDrones.com - Innovative flight data analysis that matters )

    If you have an extra battery use it to first send the quad up to 300 feet ,switch to ATTI mode, let go of the sticks and let the top drift show you which way and how strong the wind is at that altitude. Use that information in your decision making for your final run, and follow Benjamin's advice about not overriding and stepping it!
     
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  9. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    One other basic thing you probably have done already.
    But just in case ...
    Make sure you are familiar with operating RTH via the button on the controller.
    If you have no visual, it's good to be confident that you know how the button works for turning on and off RTH
     
  10. Jamsta

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    All great points. So when I lose video, do I lose all functions through the app as well?
     
  11. Erroll

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    You don't lose any functionality. You only don't see what the camera sees.
    You will still be able to use the satellite map to check position and the little radar for orientation.
     
  12. John473

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    Good question. When I lose video I hit return to home button. I wouldn't trust the app at that point until I regain video signal. I don't like flying blind. Especially over water. My wallet's not that big.
     
  13. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    And see your speed and altitude data.
    In RTH you can also give the speed a kick by pushing the right stick forward if it's going a bit too slow.
     
  14. dirtybum

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    Dont do water first bro! Even something simple like a autoland message will cause an inexperienced pilot to panic and you will loose your bird! Then something unseen could happen like birdstrike or equipment failure, either senario if your over water you dont have a fighting chance at recovery and rebuild
     
  15. Erroll

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    Bird strikes and equipment failure only happens to inexperienced pilots?
     
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  16. Noble 1

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    Brilliant idea. I'll have to try this as I often encounter different wind speeds and directional currents with altitude changes. Outstanding.
     
  17. Mark The Droner

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  18. phantom13flyer

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    Also if the wind is helping you , use atti mode if you want to go faster. But keep in mind your phantom won't fly as straight as it did in p gps mode. So you'll occasionally need to make flight adjustments . However you can make up a lot of ground if the wind is right . Just be careful with it and I would also wait till you have a little more experience with long range flights before using it. Good luck !!
     
  19. Erroll

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  20. sbarton

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    Is telemetry transmission separate from video? Usually when I lose video I thought I also lose telemetry data. Is that not the case?