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To Those Who've Experienced Compass Errors.....

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by Bigfootbuilt, Aug 1, 2016.

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  1. Bigfootbuilt

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    I've had almost 30 flights with my P3A so far. Earlier today, after calibrating the compass before each flight, I took off from the mountain cliff right at sunrise to get some low cloud footage with the sun shining on it and flew for about 15 minutes and as soon as I landed, you guessed it, I realized I forgot to hit "record", so I immediately put a fresh battery in and flew again. About midway through the 2nd flight, that's when the compass problem began. The bird tilted left and I got a compass error, so I switched to A-mode briefly, then back to P. Bird steadied for a while then errored again a few minutes later, tilting the horizon to the left again. Repeated steps and it went back to normal. Took the bird up for a 3rd flight about an hour later and had no problems. So, questions are...

    1) Is this typically what happens with those of you that have had compass errors?
    2) Did you get your compass error after inserting a new battery and immediately flying again?
    3) Perhaps the error occurred due to the bird still being warm after the previous flight?

    It seems like an isolated incident, and healthydrones.com didn't show the compass errors to be in dangerous range.
    If you want to see the area I was flying, see here

    PS, I think the part where the quad tilted were edited out, but I thought showing the site I took off from might help.
     
    Double_DoubleG likes this.
  2. Skyfly101

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    I had this same problem 2 times today! I am so cheesed. I got my drone less than a week ago and I'm having these problems but it seems like I'm not the only one. I have heard that there could besolar flares messing with everything send electromagnetic fields messing up the Compass. I personally am not flying more today and going to wait till I can get an answer for this because I almost had 2 fly aways thank gosh they returned home. And my drone did too tilt the camera left on my p3a someone please have an answer
     
  3. Skyfly101

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    Sorry phantom 3 standard not advanced
     
  4. Multicoptertec

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    First thing I would do is recalibrate the compass somewhere else nearby. That terrain my have affected your calibration. I have not calibrated my compass in 6 months, trusting that I have a solid calibration, and have never had a compass error, except when I am messing with the bird indoors.


    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
     
  5. HWCM

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    Stop calibrating the compass before every flight. It is not necessary. You are introducing errors when you do this. When you get a good calibration, leave it.
     
  6. Mako79

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    +1
    Find a wide open grassy field near your flight location and PRIME your compass by doing the dance.
    You need to simulate what the compass will see 50-100 ft up.
     
  7. BudWalker

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    Would it be possible for you to provide the .DAT for the flight with the compass errors (the 2nd flight)? To see how to retrieve the .DAT go here. It'll be large so you'll need to post a Dropbox (or a Google Drive) link.
     
  8. Skyfly101

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    Just took it out for a test spin didn't fly too far but I went about 400 feet high. New record for me. And everything seemed to work well. I'm still a bit concerned about the Compass. But I don't think I will be flying very far in my neighborhood again
     
  9. flyNfrank

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    If you indeed have a P3 Standard there is little in this forum that has to do with your aircraft. There is a dedicated forum for your setup where others with the same aircraft are at. This is the Professional & Advanced forum.
     
    robinb likes this.
  10. Skyfly101

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    Okay I thought this was the phantom help for all phantom 3's. Sorry this is my First day on the forums
     
    Yiannis.B likes this.
  11. Bigfootbuilt

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    Do you remember about what time (UTC) you were flying? Maybe there was something up with the sun. My problems occurred about 11:20am aug 1st (UTC). I used to not calibrate after every flight. I started doing so again because sometimes when I try to fly a straight line it wants to yaw to one side or another. It seems it isn't as bad when I calibrate before flight.

    I'll see if I can find a place to upload the DAT from the flight then post.
     
  12. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    The sun has no effect on your compass.
     
    FrequentFlyer likes this.
  13. BudWalker

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    Could you also post your .DAT like I asked @Bigfootbuilt to do in post #7? Seems like you're having the same issue as he. The differences between the Advanced and Standard aren't relevant for these kinds of issues.
     
    #13 BudWalker, Aug 2, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
  14. flyNfrank

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    Compass errors have recently become a common issue. However, there will be a minimal chance that we can find the reason for it unless each person that describes their personal event with their P3P or P3A provides the details of the:

    (copy&Paste)
    *Aircraft Model-
    * Aircraft Firmware-
    *Remote Controller Firmware-
    *GO App Version or SDK App Version-
    *Startup Sequence-
    *Calibration Technique-

    Example
    (
    *Aircraft Model- P3P
    * Aircraft Firmware- v4.1.0
    *Remote Controller Firmware- 1.5.70
    *GO App Version or SDK App Version- 2.4.3
    *Startup Sequence- Power Tablet/ Power R/C /Power Aircraft/Enable GO App
    *Calibration Technique- Press calibrate compass in GO app menu/ ect ect/......
    )
     
  15. Bigfootbuilt

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    *Aircraft Model- P3A
    * Aircraft Firmware- Latest
    *Remote Controller Firmware- Latest
    *GO App Version or SDK App Version- Latest android version of DJI app
    *Startup Sequence- Tablet, controller, P3A
    *Calibration Technique- 360 horizontal turn, then 360 frontside down turn.
     
    Suntana likes this.
  16. neven

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    As I wrote in another thread I also had my first mid flight compass error two weeks ago. Scary moment especially because it happened over water and with very limited VLoS corridor. Bad calibration was not cause of it. But, something else could be a reason for it. That flight was done after traveling more then 1000 kilometers with Phantom in my car. Is it possible that bumps and shakes from a car "un-calibrated" my IMU a bit? Are people experiencing those errors also traveling with their ACs?
     
  17. Vertigo

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    When you travel 1000Km, you would be wise to recalibrate as at those distances, there could be non trivial differences in magnetic declination.

    That you travel by car would make no difference, except if you put your phantom close to speakers/woofer or any other source of magnetism in the trunk of your car. Come to think of it, an electric car (or hybrid) might also not be a good thing. IF thats what happened, recalibrating isnt a real solution, you may need to degauss the sensor first.
     
  18. neven

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    I am in a "calibrate once, fly many" group and I calibrate compass only if my location is hundred or more kilometers away from a previous calibration spot. I calibrate like a nerd, with holding my pants because I took my belt off. Before that nerve wrecking flight I did the dance on a beach and checked mod value after. Perfect calibration. What made me think that IMU calibration could be the reason is seeing people suggesting IMU calibration after survived crashes. I bet there were some decent shakes and bumps on that 1k trip. AC was not near speaker though.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots
     
  19. Vertigo

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    IMU and compass are different things. Well, I guess it depends on your definition, but generally and in DJI speak, IMU is accelerometer + gyro, where as the compass (magnetometer) is just that. Recalibrating the IMU will have no bearing (pun intended) on compass problems, or vice versa.

    Recalibrating IMU after a crash is not a bad idea, if you know how they work internally, I guess its possible a bad crash would influence them. IT would have to be pretty bad though, like 50+G bad which makes me wonder if anything about the quad would still be usable, but hey, no harm in doing such a calibration. Vibrations during a car trip would make no difference.

    I'll tell you what happened though. I just googled "Bald Rock" and found its mostly granite. Granite is a magnetic stone. Magnetometers are in fact used to detect them. So yeah, probably no big mystery. When flying there, be ready to switch to attitude mode, and dont count on GPS/RTH.
     
  20. flyNfrank

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    Could you explain why in this case selecting RTH is a bad idea?

    Also what could and would happen if say a compass error took place and the pilot then selected RTH, what might the pilot prepare for if RTH was in fact selected?