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Winds aloft - what is your comfort zone?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Scenictraverse, May 25, 2014.

  1. Scenictraverse

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    I have been reading on here as many of you have wisely spoken about the dangers of high winds at altitude that could wreak havoc on our flying machines, but I wanted to know what your limit or comfort zone for winds are when flying. Obviously the drone can tolerate flying in wind, it's just a matter of identifying when that wind goes from acceptable to dangerous for the phantom. Basically the question is, when you look at the wind forecast, at what point do you say "not today"?

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. SBGfilms

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    18 - 20 mph is my limit, I have flown in more (25 - 30 mph) but it was almost impossible to fly safely without the phantom being thrown around a bit, although flying with the wind was fun!
    If its for filming video then I wont fly over 12 mph otherwise the footage isn't really usable.
     
  3. 4wd

    4wd

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    It can probably cope with about 30mph but taking off and landing become quite hazardous by 15mph.
    You don't really know how strong it is even 100 feet up until you go there but it will almost always be more, though maybe less gusty.

    Here we have quite deep valleys and it can be calm at the bottom but on the sides you can easily tell it is too windy to fly.
    It shows how difficult it is to assess conditions at altitude from the launch site.
     
  4. tomic

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    Last night I was at a friends condo and went out to his balcony, the winds must have been over 50 km/h. Granted he lives on the 50th floor

    However when I got to ground level the winds were none existent and when I checked the weather forecast they had said current winds were about 5 km

    My question is how do you know what winds are at altitude ? I'm pretty sure my bird would have been brought down by theses winds if I was just testing it
     
  5. SBGfilms

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    At ground level you have what's known as a friction layer of wind, so the wind hits the ground, trees etc and will cause the wind speed to decrease. Weather forecasters will give a wind forecast at ground level.
    The higher up you go the less friction there is so the wind will increase. Also any type of valley or narrow passing through buildings can cause the wind to 'funnel' and will also increase the wind speed.
    Basically if it feels windy at ground level then it will be worse higher up so probably not a good idea to fly..
     
  6. shrill mute

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    Practice practice practice.

    Flying and landing in higher winds can be fun and also is great for capturing video. Use the wind and ATTI mode to your advantage.

    [vimeo]93903876[/vimeo]
     
  7. usaken

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    Ok, Well, I'm a little chicken given the cost of our toys. I usually don't fly winds much above about 10 MPH. Videos get pretty choppy and as has been pointed out, winds at 100 feet might be much higher than at ground level. The drone can fly about 25 MPH, so in a 20 MPH head wind, the bird can only make 5 MPH against it at FULL POWER! Have fun out there.
     
  8. shrill mute

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    A Phantom's top speed is much higher than 25mph. It can fly much faster than 5 mph into a 20mph wind at FULl POWER.
     
  9. Flying Cephlopod

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    Some of us are beginners (like me)...

    Flying in higher winds cause the battery power to drain much more quickly. It takes more effort (power) to control the quadcopter.
     
  10. FlyingFox

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    My max is generally around 20mph like stated it's important that if in higher winds it's towards you as in gps with a head wind it doesn't move to quick , tail wind the opposite etc you don't want low battery with a headwind. Also wind uses more battery in gps .
     
  11. shrill mute

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    This does not hold true when flying in ATTI when you allow the wind bring you back home. Idling while going 20-30 is common.
     
  12. Scenictraverse

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    I used to teach SCUBA diving - the rule of thumb was that if you were going to dive anywhere where there was an underwater current, you swam into the current on the way out and then rode the current on the way back.... because you are going to use more of your air while you swim against the current. I would certainly assume and follow my own advice when flying in a breeze.

    The winds aloft forecasts are usually designed for commercial or civil flights that are far higher than us - are any of you using the higher altitude forecasts to give an estimate of what winds a little lower down (200ft ish) altitude would be? Or do you just eye the trees and ground winds to estimate a little higher?