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Total Newbie Building Confidence

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by AP4me, Feb 21, 2016.

  1. AP4me

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    Well, I got my P3A on Wednesday. I'm obviously excited and am trying to build confidence in a few things.

    Short back story, I used to fly RC planes when I was 13-16. It was fun, but it was a different time. I'm now 44. The technology has obviously changed!

    I am having a hard time with confidence for some reason. I used the sim and have flown, mostly just up to see how stable it is, and back down. A little bit of flying to get my bearings but something has me a little freaked out. I thought the plane background would help. I'm not sure it does. It looks so different than a plane, and flys VERY different! Great and freaky! lol

    I'm not sure if it's the cost of these, which I didn't consider much when I was younger, or that I can see on the monitor from up there, or that my eyes aren't what they used to be, or what....

    The biggest factor has been the wind. The night I got it I flew up in 11 mph winds. It was fine. The next day we had sustained 35 mph winds with gusts to 45. I didn't fly that day obviously. Yesterday and today the winds have been between 11-18. I guess I don't remember thinking about wind this much. I flew. Now though, I'm not sure if that's a lot of these or not.

    Lastly, is the range. I really don 't trust it for some reason. I feel I don't want to "push it"...yet haven't gone beyond 100 feet! lol! Really?! yup!

    So suggestions? I'm not a hyper stressed kind of person or anything. There's just so many new features...but they should make it better and more stable! right? :)
     
  2. Fplvert

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    Greetings AP4me!

    Phantoms are an amazing piece of technology! A huge step for you and me from the fixed wing era!

    There is no reason for you not to take your time getting used to trusting yourself and the bird. Once you gain confidence, you'll find less stress and worry about flying.

    Your P3A has a lot of safety features built into it like Glonass and US satellites to know where it is, and show you on the map.

    Take your time! You're less likely to have a problem than some that are overconfident and get in a hurry.;)
     
  3. GregWV

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    Take your time. Go to a large open area and practice, your confidence will come with stick time. Remember to have fun!
     
  4. DaveB68

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    Im the same, took my new P3A out on Friday and it was a bit breezy, so called it a day after 10 mins, didnt go higher than 20ft :) Still windy here so will wait it out before trying again. I'm pretty sure the bird would have been fine but as a newbie I thought it best.
     
  5. Air Ontario

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    Pretty much everyone is spooked at first.

    Lots of responsibility if things get away from you over something or someone.

    Actually, reading and understanding the manual gave me confidence/knowledge to "fix" / "recover" from any event as it happened.

    Then stick time as mentioned above in the wide open spaces gave me confidence in the DJI equipment itself.

    Also utilize all the free info on flying....like UAV forecast, weather reports, learn how to read the wind observing a flag, trees, etc., use rawinsonde reporting from airports near you for winds aloft, NOTAMs and METARs.

    Be informed so you can be safe. Then being safe is a huge factor in confidence.
     
  6. DaveB68

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    Also finding using the flight simulator in the Go app is very worth it. You can even use the inteligent flight modes, knowing how they all work before trying for real has to help.
     
  7. phantom1972

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    All this is great advice. As an airplane pilot I find FPV flying easy, and flying it just by visual reference HARD! When you get much more than 100' away, the symmetry makes it hard to tell "front" from "back", and when it gets to be really small, I'm lost.

    FPV is NO PROBLEM. That beautiful HD display, the telemetry, and the simplified controls makes it pretty easy. And you know front from back because you're looking out the front window. At ranges where the quad is small, I don't even try to sort it out. I'm already flying by FPV reference, and if you are confident with the controls, it's easy.

    The manual, the sim, and stick time will make you more confident fast. Talking in terms of not using the FPV, get disoriented, because it's too far away, remember that hands off the control means it's going to hover, and the RTH button will bring it your way, until you get your bearing. KNOW ABOUT THE RTH ALTITUDE STUFF COLD THOUGH.

    Also in the advanced flight controls, there is a home referenced mode. Select it, and pulling bask on the right stick moves it towards its home position. Right by you presumably. When it gets close enough that you're comfortable again, you can switch out of the mode if you want.

    Playing with all this stuff on the flight simulator is fun. With stick back in the home referenced mode, it won't come more than 15m horizon distance from you. When it teaches that limit, full back and left or right switch makes it rotate around you in a circle. Amusing to discover.

    Open areas until you're confident is great advice, and would have saved me a couple of tree encounters. Which didn't hurt anything.

    Flying much further than being able to clearly tell which end is which requires flying it by the beautiful FPV HD Feed. You have to be careful to make sure of your surroundings, so you don't back up into something, hit a power line... Then you need to make sure you have enough battery to get back.

    So learn to fly it visually, expect to have trouble when you can't tell which end is which. Plus, when it's coming towards you vs moving away can make the control inputs not instinctive without practice. Then you can feel more comfortable with flying by your device screen. And then it gets EASY. Deceptively so, so you have to be careful.
     
  8. Air Ontario

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    Learn to read the radar and the satellite map displayed. It will orient you if the bird's orientation is difficult to see.

    I have my C1/C2 switches set to toggle the satellite map(C1) and the battery(C2) on demand.

    They comfort me when things get confusing. lol
     
  9. Frankc

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    My first bit of advice, and someone has already touched on this, is learn how to use the RTH, Return To Home, button before you do anything else. If you delve into your settings, but you dont need to, you will see your Return To Home altitude. Because when you push the RTH button the first time and your not expecting it it will do the opposite of returning to you! Before you panic let me explain. Your standing in a field. Lets say the aircraft is in the air about 40 feet up and about 60 feet from you. OK FrankC said practice using the RTH button before you need it! You push and hold the button down for 3 seconds. The unit starts beeping etc. You expect the Heli to come flying back to you? No it doesnt. First off it goes to the RTH altitude. Mine is set at 295 feet. Its disappearing and you suddenly need clean trousers. But dont panic its supposed to do this. What it will do is fly up to that RTH altitude. Fly back to the HOME point. Then descend slowly back to earth.

    Let me explain the altitude thing. Lets say you fly the drone and for what ever reason its out of sight and sound. Sugar, or words to that effect. No problem I will push the RTH Button. Now if it where to fly straight back to you and it was even at a reasonable height there may be a telegraph pole, a tree, of a block of flats between you and it. So the aircraft flies straight up. Well clear of trees, buildings etc Flies back to your position then descends.

    You can choose whatever RTH altitude you want. I do not know what the default is. I set mine to 295 because of some obstacles around here.

    When I first had the drone and I pushed the button I wondered where the (**&^ it was going. I watched it as it went from a few yards in front of me to disappearing upwards.
     
  10. Grae

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    Some great advice here. Yeah, small steps and build up. It's a weird feeling seeing something you spent your hard earned money on flying away from you! You'll get there!


    UK
     
  11. octaver

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    First RTFM
    Familiarize yourself into controls first to avoid Panic causing crash or hitting something.
    Feel the Controls and drone response
    Run on any open field that is not NFZ area lol and do the practice
    Enjoy!
     
  12. DroneBruh

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    I completely understand. The 1st time I took my pro out past 1 mile my hands were shaking (it was over flat agriculture land and it was night time, I had visual of the bird the whole time btw) The only thing I can suggest is to keep flying and you will get more confident every time. Make sure you have current firmware, you do a preflight inspection for tight props etc, your max alt. Is set where you want it, and your return to home height is set high enough to avoid any obstacles and your good. Before you turn on the motors make sure your home point is set. I didn't have a return to home event until I had almost 40 flights under my belt and it still made me nervous, but it came back just as it should. It takes time, and being nervous is a good sign of being a responsible cautious pilot. One day I just said f*ck it, let my friend spot for me, kept my eyes on the fpv feed and pretended it was a video game lol.
     
  13. DroneBruh

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    A friend of mine just got a p3 advanced, he's total opposite and has flown with confidence since day one, maybe too confident. He has had many narrow misses, such as missing power lines by mere feet. Without speaking Ill of him I do believe I will have my bird long after his has crashed and is gone. Not being over confident is a good thing.
     
  14. AP4me

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    Wow! I love this forum. What was said made perfect sense, and actually got me going out the door to fly several times today!

    With those flights, my confidence...basically trust in the equipment too...grew. I took myself out of beginner mode, set my limits, and tried it out. Even IOC...which I'm not sure I like yet or not. I see it's uses but also see some drawbacks. I ventured out further and up to 200 ft. wow! the pictures and video is pretty awesome! I don't have the right angles yet, but that will come.

    Thank you all for your help! I guess some confidence comes from reassurance!
     
    #14 AP4me, Feb 21, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2016
  15. Air Ontario

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    Really glad you benefited from all the good posts.

    Eventually you can practice Atti mode and or practice control with the bird facing you.
     
  16. AP4me

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    I didn't try Atti mode yet...I read a bit about it, but don't feel I completely understand it yet. I have practiced a fair amount with it facing me, facing away and all the way around! I'm getting it!
     
  17. Air Ontario

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    Atti is a non gps mode and will be blown with the wind unless appropriate input from you is initiated. It also will continue in the direction of travel until it receives opposite input from you. In other words it won't break/stop like gps mode. It also will fly faster than gps mode to make up for lack of positioning.

    This is all good if you lose gps in the wind. Switching to atti and manually flying it back to you is a learned skill.