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Old Mar 16, 2014, 03:53 PM
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Another Lost Phantom

I lost my DJI Phantom 2 Yesterday. I have flown it many time since it arrived in January. I had Sat lock on 9+ sat and home point lock. I flew it out over frozen lake Michigan near Gladstone, MI. I throttled up to about 25m at gave it forward stick. At just over 300m I started to get some picture interference so I centered both sticks and it was still moving away at a fast rate. It was out of site so I went to HL mode and pulled back and still no return. I shut off the control and waited but no return. I got a truck and drove for a few miles out on the ice and found nothing. I think this is the last product I will buy from DJI. Everyone needs to buy a GPS tracking device. Your Phantom will fly away at some point.
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Old Mar 16, 2014, 09:18 PM
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Excellent advice.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 10:33 AM
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Ugh, sorry Rstang50. Did your Naza have a GeoFence feature on it? I was under the impression this is how DJI is dealing with this possibility.

Man, I know the feeling. I've lost a quad due to my own mistakes and flying where I shouldn't.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 10:49 AM
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interesting thread. I have the P2Z and I am having troubles where the rudder has changed direction for no apparent reason. I was flying away from me but still pretty close to it when left rudder became right. I used RTH to get it back safely but I am not totally convinced in that feature also.
Sorry for your loss.
Whats a Geofence?
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 12:03 PM
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I also had a flyaway a few days ago, luckily it hit the telephone lines at the end of the field. Over 100 happy flights on her as she is my keep in the car quad.

Sorry for your loss, luckily I get to salvage most of the electronics and my camera didn't get a scratch. The body and props are shattered though.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 12:10 PM
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The only way this thread w be helpful is if IronAgeMedia comes in here and debates you guys on user error points. we that fly phantoms are interested in preventing flyaways and without a two sided coin we dont have much to work from. Sure I read the big flyaway threads, and in doing so we see lots of user error that goes initially unreported, this thread needs an antagonist since its all post facto info imo lol

before you used homelock switch, what other commands did you give for example
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 12:17 PM
Please excuse me..
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Quote:
Originally Posted by branflakes View Post
The only way this thread w be helpful is if IronAgeMedia comes in here and debates you guys on user error points. we that fly phantoms are interested in preventing flyaways and without a two sided coin we dont have much to work from. Sure I read the big flyaway threads, and in doing so we see lots of user error that goes initially unreported, this thread needs an antagonist since its all post facto info imo lol

before you used homelock switch, what other commands did you give for example
If you really want to waste your time debating what caused this flyaway, go ahead. If I were you, I'd leave this thread and go out and enjoy flying.

After my $2000+ F550 flew away, after meticulous building and nearly a hundred careful flights (and 16 years of experience in RC and building planes) I didn't just say F*** DJI, I said F*** relying on GPS and an electronic compass to bring your investment back home safely.

Nowadays, I am happily flying a tricopter with an FPV system and GoPro attached, on a KK2 board! It's a lot more fun when you don't rely on return to home to save you. DJI does suck though- you can invest all the money you want in their products, to the degree that there is an illusion of high quality and perfect operation. It will eventually malfunction though, if you fly it enough.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 12:46 PM
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I haven't been very busy on this forum, but I have seen a number of flyaway reports on others. I cannot speak for the P1, but the P2 is a different beast. The number of fly away reports is significantly lower and just about every single report I've come across that has been dissected properly has a user or mechanical failure associated with it.

When I first got my P2 I was terrified of flyaways but, like I said, it just isn't happening very much at all on the P2. The stock radio has a diversity setup and uses Futaba FASST. We have regular reports of people getting 5km of range on it. I spent a pretty penny on a Futaba 8FGS to give me extra safety from flyaways. Turns out I probably didn't need it. Thankfully, I've found it has other worthwhile benefits!

I think the self-locking props has been another major factor in reducing flyaways. Also, I think the V2 Naza cleaned up some sloppy logic that allowed the Phantom to get locked into one flight configuration indefinitely.

As an example, the most recent flyaway I came across was a P2 that was doing just fine hovering at about 400m distance and then just took off in one direction and went for a quite a while before landing somewhere in a big forest. Poor kid might have lost his investment. But, as we quickly learned, it might not have happened had he not strapped his iPhone to the Phantom and also tried to fix a previously damaged blade with some tape. My guess is his handy work on the damaged blade wasn't enough for it to not come apart mid flight.

I will give you that the Naza is not perfect. I have found bugs in the P2 Naza with regards to declination that are driving me nuts and we've seen too many out of the box issues with ESCs, GPS and batteries. But the amount of user error out there is astounding. The number of times I see posts from people claiming their Phantom is acting weird and then say they can see it acting weird from the GoPro WiFi feed just makes me wonder...
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by represent View Post
I am happily flying a tricopter with an FPV system and GoPro attached, on a KK2 board! It's a lot more fun when you don't rely on return to home to save you.
Well typed
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 01:29 PM
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I just searched here for kk2 flyaways. since I got back more than a page of them, we'll conclude this as just an anti dji thread, no details, and no real help other than someone got a kk2 flyaway and someone with 16 yrs experience hasn't. yet

prior to the search, I had been pre-sold as kk2 being the bomb diggity and now it seems to be lumped within all that is rc critique, just a matter of time for each of us. each platform has flyaways and no flyaways. since I literally abuse my phantom and it doesnt flyaway and it covers over a mile nlos even with no firmware updates or hard calibrations in a year, Ill digress and say dji built the baddest flight controller Ive ever seen in the history of obsessive rc purchases made by me

that being said, id still really like more flight details from OP to see what some of the undisclosed details may be!
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 01:39 PM
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Getting my P2/zenmuse tomorrow

3 yrs experience w/ Naza 1/whitespy - all succesful except 1 w/c is user error.
Getting my P2/zenmuse/iosdmini tomorrow.
Very meticulous w/ pre-flight checks/firmware updates.
Will be using P2/zenmuse mostly for low aerial tracking shots. Will not use it for high altitude or FPV purposes.
Concerned and nervous about the number of "flyaway" threads and videos.
I read this particular thread and it showed some glimmer of hope that most of the incidents are user error related.
I took the plunge and hoping I made the right decision.
Will do some extensive tests/video diary log for a month before I clear it for my use. Might consider tethering it under GPS mode.
Will consider ATTI to prevent flyaway issues ( if it is true).
Crap! Too many flyaway instances though to discourage me to consider sending it back to the dealer.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 02:00 PM
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Switching to HomeLock first was good practice. I think if the Phantom is acting weird in GPS mode, then it will also be acting weird in return to home mode. The RTH in my opinion, is to be used when you lose site of the Phantom, not for aborting GPS/Compass failure. Thats what manual is for or maybe even ATTITUDE.

I still find my GPS's unstable. When it works it works good. When it isn't working, there is usually 10-20' of drift. I also experience when a scenario where Phantom facing away from Home it will be fine and when facing the Home, it will fly in one direction. The outcome was repetitive. After a calibration, it worked itself out. I believe this usually happened after some bumps or flights where my quad landed upside down. Nothing hard enough to break the plastic, but hard enough to give the Naza a good shock.

When flying and the Naza GPS is drifting or the quad is levelling in a non level fashion, I find switching it into Manual then back to GPS will stabilize things tremendously. I think it is important to be able to flick the Naza into manual at the first signs of problems and be able to hover.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Rstang50 View Post
I lost my DJI Phantom 2 Yesterday. I have flown it many time since it arrived in January. I had Sat lock on 9+ sat and home point lock. I flew it out over frozen lake Michigan near Gladstone, MI. I throttled up to about 25m at gave it forward stick. At just over 300m I started to get some picture interference so I centered both sticks and it was still moving away at a fast rate. It was out of site so I went to HL mode and pulled back and still no return. I shut off the control and waited but no return. I got a truck and drove for a few miles out on the ice and found nothing. I think this is the last product I will buy from DJI. Everyone needs to buy a GPS tracking device. Your Phantom will fly away at some point.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 02:05 PM
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I'm on the other side of the Lake - I'll take a look for it! lol


On a more serious note - I would bet almost all "fly aways" can be solved. For example, I had one on me but I found the cause - one of the wires to one of the motors broke, and as it was vibrating it was giving intermittent contact causing it to fly out of control.

If I had not had it crash not too far away from me, I would have never known. Could have easily been a "DJI SUCKS" thread - but I found the problem.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 02:43 PM
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Joined Feb 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by branflakes View Post
I just searched here for kk2 flyaways. since I got back more than a page of them, we'll conclude this as just an anti dji thread, no details, and no real help other than someone got a kk2 flyaway and someone with 16 yrs experience hasn't. yet

prior to the search, I had been pre-sold as kk2 being the bomb diggity and now it seems to be lumped within all that is rc critique, just a matter of time for each of us. each platform has flyaways and no flyaways. since I literally abuse my phantom and it doesnt flyaway and it covers over a mile nlos even with no firmware updates or hard calibrations in a year, Ill digress and say dji built the baddest flight controller Ive ever seen in the history of obsessive rc purchases made by me

that being said, id still really like more flight details from OP to see what some of the undisclosed details may be!
KK2's don't fly away because they don't have a GPS and compass telling them where to fly. GPS/RTH/Compass is the source of Naza problems. This is well established.
branflakes, I just did the same search and only found one "flyaway" on KK2. I'm on the multirotor forums all the time, and no one ever mentions KK2 flyaways, because they don't happen.

Also, branflakes, I'm not trying to be a jackass. I was all about my Naza V2 for the better part of last summer, and even when all of the fly away reports were coming in mid-summer (there were a TON of them), I kept the faith and attributed the fly aways to user inexperience and error. Only after my own personal fly away, where I know 100% the Naza was responsible- only after that did I lose trust in DJI's "equipment."

Finally, branflakes please proofread your posts. You have several unintelligible sentences in there.
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Last edited by represent; Mar 17, 2014 at 03:00 PM.
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Old Mar 17, 2014, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by represent View Post
KK2's don't fly away because they don't have a GPS and compass telling them where to fly. GPS/RTH/Compass is the source of Naza problems.

I do recall seeing several reports of KK flyaways, as well as some people who initially blamed the Naza quite adamantly but subsequently discovered things like crimped tx antennas (and were big enough to then update their flyaway accounts), so it can't be said that inherent gps/compass issues explain everything.
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