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Quick advice before I pay DJI !!!

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by Prometheus_Xex, Aug 26, 2015.

  1. Prometheus_Xex

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    So after more then 6 weeks of DJI having my Phantom 3, I finally got an email with the cost... $170 US. They never addressed the reason it took off on me or anything. I only got the bill. So since they only considered it a repair, I have to eat the cost of getting a new almost $200 CAD battery due to the fact the crashed one was destroyed.

    The damned thing randomly took off from me and was completely unresponsive to the controls. Surely DJI must take some kind of blame for it? It was locked on to 18 satalites and home point was set to where it took off !!!

    Any advice with handling DJI would be appreciated.

    From DJI:

    Please review the attached invoice with the due amount of (170.00). You are being invoiced for the following:

    Bottom cover kit: $8.00
    Top cover kit: $5.00
    Camera kit: $27.00
    2 hrs of repair time at $65 per hour: $130.00
    Total: $170.00



    Here's background on my accident:

    http://www.phantompilots.com/threads/phantom-3-pro-just-crashed-what-do-i-do.46902/

    My Phantom 3 Pro just went nuts and killed itself !

    I was going to fly it over some very old abandoned saw mill. I did the usual... turn on remote, then turn on Phantom 3 Pro (firmware 1.2.6), then start DJI Pilot (v1.2.0) app. I picked it up after it initialized and did compass calibration and put it on the ground. There are the familiar green "safe to fly" bar at the top with 17 satellites connected (P-GPS)

    I started the motors, and after a few seconds, made it lift off the ground just over 1m, A few more seconds, then raised it to about 2-3m. Slowly moved it forward for a few meters... so far so good... then BAM! It just full throttled forward and traveled 87m before smashing into the side of a wall. I initially tried pulling back on the right stick to force it to slow down and go backwards, but nothing worked. It happened so fast (to me). The stricture it flew into was (in elevation) a few meters lower than where I was standing.

    I managed to locate it using it's last known location and picked up the drone, some broken blades, and the disconnected battery (fully charged). It's 2 1/2 hours later and the battery is pretty warm.

    I put in a new battery and started it up. It sees satelites, the gimble initiates and I can see video. I unscrewed the damaged lens cover and the main camera seems fine). I can start the motors (no props on) and the crashed motor also runs, but it's slightly rubbing against the crushed drone arm. It feels like all I need it a new drone body.

    I've had absolutely flawless flights. I've gone 500m up and also tried 4.1k out. Not a single issue until today. What more should I do? Call DJI or something?


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  2. xave

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    Very interested to see what the others say about this. What kind of interference could have been in the area ? Cell towers? Power grid? Local Municipal repeater?

    I really don't know why it would have just taken off on you.
     
  3. unclejas

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    I can understand your frustration. It's a buyer beware kind of world. I think there are so many unknowns in this situation that blame cannot be put on you nor DJI at this time. This is an electronic device and it is susceptible to electro magnetic interference.

    My dad had a similar issue just two weeks ago with his Solo. It was hovering about 10' in the air and then it took off for a tree and fell about 2' into some bushes that caught it's fall. 3DR examined the logs (quickly I might add) and replied that his satellite coverage was dismal; hence the tree hanging over the launch area. Yep, 'user error' indeed, but I'd recommend you upload that flight log to healthydrones.com and see what that app has to say about it.
     
    Dronebow likes this.
  4. Prometheus_Xex

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    In my case, even if it took off, I could not regain control over it what so ever.
     
  5. Prometheus_Xex

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    When I call them, I'm going to at least try to get them to sell me a battery at cost if things don't go my way.
     
  6. Tony Perry

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    If flipping it into atti mode and you cant get control, that's definitely a flight controller error.
     
  7. Prometheus_Xex

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    I didn't get a chance to do that under the small time I had.
     
  8. Tony Perry

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    I hear you. It's hard to maintain composure and proceed deliberately when in panic mode. It took me quite a few crashes on my collective pitch helicopters to drill in my head to instinctively hit throttle hold before hitting the ground.

    At any rate, this really doesn't sound like your fault. Their software really needs to have some protection against gps glitches. Other controllers like the Pixhawk already implement a form of this. I'd definitely try to be a squeaky wheel and see if you can get some grease ;)
     
  9. Prometheus_Xex

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    So I called DJI RMA guy and he told me there's nothing he can do, that I should just email the person who sent the invoice and state my case. So I did. Now I will wait for their answer.
     
  10. Reginald Porter

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    The 3 hasn't been out that long and DJI is getting lots of feed back. You are dealing with the Chinese on a relatively new product, so be patient but persistent. The U.S. is a land of laws so if they are wronging the consumer locally, it will catch up with them in due course.
     
  11. vgt

    vgt

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    Looks like another 'flyaway' after an unnecessary compass calibration.
     
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  12. Prometheus_Xex

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    Should it at least respond to the remote ???
     
  13. cnynctry

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    I would ask if it has been test flown or are they just fixing the cosmetic damage. I would be like you and want some kind of feed back on if they even at least looked to find a possible cause and rule out internal issues.
     
  14. Prometheus_Xex

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    So far DJI is a pain in the butt. I've messaged them on several fronts a few times and they still haven't responded to any of them. I'm worried they'll just fix the damaged (which I paid for) without addressing my battery issue. If they won't give me one free, I would like them to sell me one at cost... just to meet half way.

    That battery is $200CAD for me. The $225CAD is already bad enough to swallow for the repair.

    ARGH !!!
     
  15. BuckRogers

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    agree. Just make sure mod value is around 1500 before every flight. Learn to shift to atti mode and fly it from there. I know you have to be ready and do it quick. That's when knowing how to really fly a drone helps.
     
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  16. Prometheus_Xex

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    But why a "fly away"? Does the drone decide it no longer needs to communicate with the controller at only a few feet away? When you let go the controls, should it not stop?
     
  17. BuckRogers

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    a fly away is when one of the X,Y,Z coordinates is incorrect and it won't hold position. The Mod value of 1500 is the sweet spot for those coordinates. And just because you calibrated the compass, doesn't mean it's done correctly. Check that value. It can change. Go move your phantom near a metal object and see what is does to the mod value.
     
  18. Prometheus_Xex

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    When I finally get it back (it's been 2 months now), I'll do the checks.
     
  19. Prometheus_Xex

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    I was thinking more of what you said. The more and more I think about it, the more its bugging me. I ask you this? What about the 18 satellites that it was locked onto? Do they not count? Does not having a $2,000 toy locked onto to billions of dollars worth of space hardware not make a difference? I would like to think it would.

    Surely if all else fails with all the other sensors, I would think that the pinpoint accuracy of locking on to multiple satellites from two different GPS systems would allow you for a stable flight as possible. If locking onto the satellites with extreme accuracy is not enough, then what the hell is it used for?
     
  20. BuckRogers

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    I can't honestly say I know how the GPS works. But everything I've read is that a proper compass calibration will put the MOD value ~1500. If it's far away from that, then upon lift off, it will take off. A compass calibration is a reference point for the phantom. If your reference point is skewed on one of the coordinates, it will react. The gimbal also relies on that and if you look at some flyaway videos, the gimbal or horizon is lol over the place.

    Case in point. I calibrated my phantom over an open field. I flew it three times. On the last flight. I set my phantom down about 15 feet from my truck and on concrete with rebar. I lifted off and it came right at me. I immediately shifted to atti mode, got orientation and height and then landed. My mod value was 1950. From then on, I always check that value before flight to know I have a proper compass calibration. It quick. And over 200 flights, I've only has one fly away that I was able to recover from. The one that taught me to look at the mod value there after. If you take anything away....do that
     
    Hottwheells likes this.