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Thinking about getting a Phantom

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by jdawson, Mar 9, 2013.

  1. jdawson

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    Looking around the internet I have not been able to find good answers to basic questions about the Phantom.

    So hopefully someone here may have one and can answer some of the following questions.

    1. What is the recommended maximum wind to fly the phantom in (using GPS mode).

    2. What happens if you get a wind gust above that speed... (Once the gust stops will it return to the original location if no more input to the unit is given?)

    3. If the phantom lost connection with the radio, would it automatically regain it when it cam back in range? Or once it starts an auto land process must it complete that before it would accept manual input?

    4. Can you do something to force/confirm your HOME location... So you are 100% sure before you take off that it has set the location as a home? (Everything I read is that if you wait 10 seconds before taking off with a good GPS signal it will set a new home location. My concern if you don't have a visual confirmation you may think you have done that but not have done it. And if something was to go wrong it would try to return to the home location it had yesterday!)

    All the best,

    Joe Dawson
     
  2. MX45OR

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    I'm no pro with the Phantom, but I have been flyinh it everyday to get used to it.
    1)I don't know ,off hand , the max windage. I have flown it in 20mph wind gusts before though with no problems. My heart rate was up but I had no issues keeping it under control.
    2)I dont generally let go of the controls if a gust of wind comes, so I cant honestly answer that one.
    3) Yes, it is supposed to return to home if radio signal is lost. I have not tested this though, because I like to keep the Phantom in sight.
    4)The only thing I know to do to force home is to turn off the radio (not recommended).Make sure "home " is set first EVERYTIME before flight (lots of fast blinking green light only). You cant miss the signal (unless you're not looking).

    I, for one, love this craft. She is easy to assemble (4 props,and 2 landing gear),and easy to fly (still not for beginners). Once I enabled the "headlocker, courselocker" she became even easier to fly (aslong as you dont think about your orientation, cause it don't matter). I'm really impressed with the views I get with the GP Hero3, and with an added gimbal, she should be even smoother with the movies.
     
  3. MRSpyder2U

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    Location:
    Rome, Georgia y'all
     
  4. jdawson

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    Thanks for the input and answers so far... Look forward to getting feedback from a few more people.

    But I also have an additional question.

    Lets say you are flying and you started with a good GPS signal but the signal for some reason is lost during flight. Then then it lost communications to your radio. Would it just land in the current location or what would it do?
     
  5. auck

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    hello --

    1) the Phantom handles wind gusts rather well, but i would not suggest flying it in gusty winds greater than 20mph. maximum flight velocity is 10 m/s which equates to roughly 22 mph. the light weight of the unit combined with high wind, specially while hovering, is not a good idea.

    2) if you are in GPS mode, a gust of wind blew the Phantom, AND you let go of the control sticks the unit should hover close to the position of where you let go of the control sticks. however, i highly recommend that you do NOT let go of the control sticks during windy days.

    3) I have not had this happen to me, but according to the manual it would appear that you can override the auto landing sequence.

    4) the advanced manual gives you procedure on doing this.

    5) if the phantom looses GPS signal, and then looses signal to the control unit, you're SoL. don't forget the Phantom needs the GPS in order for it to know where it is and where "home" is. with out GPS it is "lost" and will be unable to find "home". the Phantom will actually go into ATTI mode (when GPS signal was lost) and will continue on course (when control signal is lost). it will eventually land when the low battery fail safe kicks in.

    *** the manuals are available on the DJI website. just go to the Phantom section of their web site. on the upper right area above the picture of the Phantom and go to "DOWNLOAD". ***

    my 2 pence
     
  6. MRSpyder2U

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    As a little extra insurance against losing a Phantom, or any plane for that matter, there is a little gizmo that sets off a very loud alarm when any one battery cell drops below a preset voltage. The setting is adjustable from 2.7-3.8 volts. It can handle up to an 8-cell LiPo It attaches to the balance lead of the battery and monitors each cell and displays the voltage of each cell and total battery voltage in three LED panels. It's about 1 inch by 1.5 inches (25mm by 40mm) and weighs about 16 grams. I can hear the alarm at least 300+ feet away. It can let you know of a low battery condition even if you can't see the LEDs on the Phantom. Even if the Phantom goes down out of site, the alarm can guide you to it. The alarm will continue to sound until there is no juice left to power it. It can be tucked in the battery compartment, but it's tight. I notched the battery door and leave it hanging outside; the alarm can better be heard and I can see the voltage readings even while it's flying. Best of all, you can find them all over ebay for $2-$4 each. Just search for LiPo low voltage alarm and it should bring up several. My planes never leave the ground without one. I hope this helps someone.
     
  7. Gizmo3000

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    1- I'm guessing the max is 20mph as well, because the Phantom itself is only capable of about that speed. anything higher and it will blow away.

    2. - in GPS mode,. the Phantom will do whatever it takes to hold its position. if it's hit by a sudden big gust, it'll return
    a few times I've demonstrated it to friends,. I'll grab the phantom as it's hovering.. and even after a few feet, it fights me to try to to return to it's original position.

    3- once it goes into "failsafe" mode (while GPS is selected), it's pretty set to fly home. tho it says in the manual if you switch from GPS to ATTI and it's back in range, it will then allow you to regain control. but I think I read also that you can do some other toggling to regain control.

    4- if you start up the Phantom, and take your time and wait for a single green blip, its safe to assume it's set for that home position. - but you can always re-set it using the CL-HL toggle.

    you can't force failsafe mode with the DJI transmitter (unless you turn it off of course), but some people have enabled a force failsafe using their own fancier (futaba) transmitters and reprogrammed the NAZA controller.

    But if you're a safe and cautious flyer, you don't necessarily need to return to home that way.
    the one time I lost my orientation, I merely switched to IOC Home lock and pulled back on the right joystick, and my Phantom flew back towards me until i could regain visual orientation. its' a great feature.
     
  8. bombero

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    Hi MX45OR, I'm just about to buy a Phantom based on months of researching different quads (ARDrone, self build, etc) and practising with my little Hubsan, but your statement has got me wondering again ..

    Can you tell me what makes the Phantom not a good quad for beginners?
     
  9. Gizmo3000

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    I think what he meant was that it's not like a toy copter that you can fly into walls and such.
    and there's a bit to learn about flying it (calibration, compass),

    But that said, I'd def have to say that if you're looking for an entry level quad to attach a GoPro to, the Phantom is it!
    and the GPS ability really makes it a great choice for newbies who don't have the skills or patience to learn how to build one yourself. even if you did try to build one using all the same components of the Phantom, you'd still end up paying roughly the same.

    This was my very first RC Quad,. I never even had a toy one to learn on,(or any RC copter, or plane, just some toy cars asa kid) and it's loads of fun.

    if you have a Hubsan to play with, you'll be perfectly fine on a Phantom.
    .th GPS hold makes it better than any other non-GPS quad to learn on.
     
  10. Sac D

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    I'm sold! This probably should have been a standard issue on all Phantoms.
     
  11. MX45OR

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    I think what he meant was that it's not like a toy copter that you can fly into walls and such.
    and there's a bit to learn about flying it (calibration, compass), .
     
  12. bombero

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    Thanks Gizmo3000, and my thoughts exactly. One day I hope to progress onto building my own quad as I know that I have the necessary skills .. but I also know my limitations (something partly to do with being nearly 50 :lol: ) and that is a poor knowledge of the components or more accurately, what each does and how they effect q quad. So, a RTF, especially one as newbie friendly as the Phantom is probably a good start. :)