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DJI Phantom Series
The Serious Big Boy Toy Absolutely NOT for inexperienced NOR timid!
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Redfive
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October 20, 2015 - 5:00 am

Apart from the longer the pole the more strain on each connector it is a great idea. Fortunately I have not needed such a devise (YET) but anything that can get a quad down to earth is worth trying.

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MikeK
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October 20, 2015 - 6:43 am
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Redfive said
Apart from the longer the pole the more strain on each connector it is a great idea. Fortunately I have not needed such a devise (YET) but anything that can get a quad down to earth is worth trying.

Thank you, Bryan.  

I think you're right about the weakened connector potential.  But if the right stiffness of plastic tubing and connectors is used I think it could work out okay up to 40' - 50' (with no wind).  

A package containing enough for 25' would cost too much to market if manufactured here in the U.S.  But if the Chinese could market it for around $5, two packages could reach 50' and a $10 investment would appeal to any drone pilot who flies near trees.  I know I wouldn't hesitate to spend ten buck for it.  

What do you think?  

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JamDJ
Lancaster, PA, USA
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October 21, 2015 - 4:28 pm
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Coming to a Best Buy near you ! !  This is a consumer electronics superstore here in

the United States. Front cover of this Sunday's ad featured the DJI Phantom 3 Pro

for $1259 !   Normally this store sells computers, cameras, cell phones and AV equipment.

Quick, get one while they are on sale, if you have 1300 bucks laying around ! 

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MikeK
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October 22, 2015 - 6:14 am
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JamDJ said
Coming to a Best Buy near you ! !  This is a consumer electronics superstore here in

the United States. Front cover of this Sunday's ad featured the DJI Phantom 3 Pro

for $1259 !   Normally this store sells computers, cameras, cell phones and AV equipment.

Quick, get one while they are on sale, if you have 1300 bucks laying around ! 

DJ,

I've seen them advertised for $1,000 and less -- But I don't know if there is an accessories factor to consider, such as a camera and gimbal mount, etc.  

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Syma Freak
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October 23, 2015 - 9:32 pm
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I have bought a lot of rc products over the years, cheap is not always the best, reason many fakes out there now. Even I can get a DJI Phantom shell and put the rest of the works in there, but not DJI stuff, just my advice buy from a guaranteed seller from DJI or Amazon as good refund policy

Such a huge push now in this area of quads, funny guy I follow in New Zealand posted this video, bit of ranting, goes on a bit.However I am in Australia is his views correct for the USA you have to register a quad(drone)?

"Fly like a butterfly sting like a Syma" http://syma107.com

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MikeK
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October 25, 2015 - 5:22 am
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S/F,

It's not official yet but the FAA (Federal Aeronautics Administration) are cooking it up right now so we can expect that plus a few more restrictive regulations re: drones in the very near future.  

There definitely will be registration plus they are talking about area restrictions, which should be interesting.  I know for certain they will seriously enforce a restriction in the vicinity of airports, which is perfectly understandable.  I just hope they don't go too far, but I don't intend to invest in a real drone until I know what's on their minds.

 

Mike--

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Redfive
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October 26, 2015 - 7:20 am

I bet the British government copies the idea too.

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Syma Freak
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October 27, 2015 - 10:32 am
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Unfortunately laws will be created on flying quads and I would also feel there could be a push for some sought of public liability insurance.Any thing that gets popular the Governments world wide see a chance of making a buck Here in Australia they charge us a fee just to go fishing with one fishing rod in the sea.

The problem with laws, how do they police them? Also the RC world is massive and employs a lot of people world wide, stopping quad flyers will hurt them a lot.I can see we need some restrictions, mostly for the idiots that fly near airports etc, always a small amount of fools mess things up for the majority of flyers that are careful with their quads as they are a expensive bit of equipment.

Maybe we should stock up with quads and parts now ready for any bans - pleurerire_gif

"Fly like a butterfly sting like a Syma" http://syma107.com

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JamDJ
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October 28, 2015 - 10:22 am
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I have to watch this carefully! I live about 8 miles from Harrisburg (Pa.)

International Airport and the planes are really low coming over. Air Force 1

does practice take offs and landings here on Tuesdays and the aircraft is

so low you can see the Presidential Seal on the door of the aircraft. Obviously

my X5C or S6 don't quite have that range, but a DJI could. Thus becomes the topic

of discussion: what constitutes the difference between hobby-grade (which we all

know can be modded), and something the FAA has to pay close attention to?

I guess the question is, where is the line drawn?

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Syma Freak
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October 31, 2015 - 8:35 pm
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Hi alll,

Can see a few considering a DJI Phantom, as you know have one, but maybe you might consider the Walkera 250 runner now with gps

This is a lot cheaper than the Phantom with if not better technology in the fact it is smaller --video below from Bo Lorentzen who really does great reviews, something to consider, as bought the first Walkera 250 without gps you can also get the required add on's

One http://shrsl.com/?~aab4

Two http://shrsl.com/?~aab5

Video

"Fly like a butterfly sting like a Syma" http://syma107.com

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rbethman
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November 8, 2015 - 9:49 am

How Y'all Are?

Sarge back at it again!  I lost my laptop to frickin' Gremlins and that it *was* a Dell!  What a POS!  I have had the motherboard replaced, the hard drive replaced, and the keyboard replaced!  I will NEVER procure another DELL again!

So I finally got my new desktop computer on the 3rd of this month.  That is why I have been gone.

Now, the Phantom is up and running again!  Turns out the GPS Module went ffffft!  Had to break the bank and order a new one.  Got a great deal from a new Hobby Shop guy that is selling a whole bunch of mostly vintage R/C parts.  He sold the GPS Module for $65 and free shipping.

Now I'll let you folks in on a bit of a secret.  On the top of the GPS Module is a ceramic square antenna.  The factory one is 2mm thick.  It isn't worth the powder to blow it up!  I know a bunch of folks are all over the world.  However, there is a replacement ceramic antenna, TAOGLAS GP.1575.25.4.A.02. - it is 4mm thick.

Here in the US we can order them from Jameco Electronics or Mouser Electronics.  There is also a phantompilots.com web site.  A whole lot of good info there!  This is where I got all the low down on this GPS upgrade!

To remove the original, remove the module from the Phantom top shell.  Don't screw up the cable when you take it loose.  The original one in mine has a shield over the entire cable.  The new module did not.  I made dang sure to remove that shield from the old one, and put it on the new one!  This is a problem in the making!  The WiFi module can easily screw up the signal from the GPS!

Now, to remove the 2mm piece of ceramic crap, you have to apply heat to the SINGLE pin on the bottom of the GPS board!  Don't go nuts!  The part that is the trade secret is that the main thing holding the ceramic antenna to the top of the board is double sticky tape!

Before you get your panties in a bunch, relax, use the tool of your choice, and slip it between the ceramic square and the board, applying constant pressure - short of breaking the board!, and pry it away!

Now the next trade secret!  To allow for the 4mm ceramic antenna to install - after you solder and stick it in place - making sure you don't block the holes in the board that screw the mess in place, use a Dremel Tool, or as I did since I'm also a wood carver, I used a pretty darn small carving tool to shave the plastic ridges in the top shell down so as to provide room for it!

The whole object of this Taoglas replacement ceramic antenna is that it outperforms the original!  You will greatly improve the number of satellites you receive and lock with!  No more having to wait in frustration for enough sats locked as we have all done with a Phantom!  I have gone from 5 to 6 average, to 8 - 11 locked!

I know that the U.S is off on a fool's errand making new rules and regulations to register ALL drones.  1) Lots of luck with that one!  2) The problem children won't bother, and they will continue to be problems!  3) I'll play their funny game, and I will register.  I'll just have to go somewhere other than my property to comply with the crap nonsense!

I ordered new prop guards and have installed same.  Ordered a second double batch of new blades.  Watch the blades!  One of those sets from DJI itself, did NOT fit properly!  They would NOT screw on all the way!  So much for DJI and their supposed QA/QC and customer service.   A word to the wise - DJI has NO CUSTOMER SERVICE!!!  All the DJI Forums are loaded with squawks about NO CUSTOMER SERVICE!

Anyone contemplating the Phantom 3 - the number of reports of body cracks is off the chart!  I highly recommend finding a Phantom 2 Vision + somewhere!  The only crack that ever appeared in mine was from a healthy crash and drop of about 18 feet!  Heck, I'd crack if I dropped that far!

I've been flying since I got everything squared away.  I'm flying as illegal as one can be!  I am definitely in one of the largest No Fly zones in the USA!  Screw them!  I don't go over 100 feet above ground!  The danged tower that is 4.6 miles from me couldn't see my phantom unless I put a 50 foot whip on top with a very bright orange pennant!  The trees between them and I are a whole lot taller than that!

I even took it out for a bit of a test flight today between the patches of rain we are getting!  Even took off and landed from my deck!

I acquired a WM-2 wind speed anemometer and temperature indicator that will also give the wind chill.  Now I have a better indicator of what it is actually like.

That brings up another tip!  Go on the Web and do a search on UAVFORECAST!  Bookmark it when you find it!  It will take your exact location/address, and give you the necessary info as to WX, Satellites in view, temp, and for the day you go there PLUS for the next three or more days!

Saves getting all ready to go only to find that the Solar Indices are too high and will screw up the GPS reception!

Y'all have fun!  Fly Safe, don't play Sushi Chef with rotor blades!  And most of all, don't crash if you can avoid it!

[ I managed to get it out of a tree by working the controls and never shutting down.  I kept working it hard withe sideways movements to get it loose and fly right on away! ] 

Old Sarge

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MikeK
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November 9, 2015 - 5:42 am
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rbetlhman,

Thanks for taking the time to lay out such detailed information.  I don't have a Phantom but I might be getting one.  So I've saved your post in case I ever have a similar problem.

 

Mike--

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Syma Freak
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November 11, 2015 - 6:36 pm
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Excellent post rbethman (Old Sarge), can not add to that, thank you for your help to all SF

double-thumbs-up-thanks-smiley-emoticon

"Fly like a butterfly sting like a Syma" http://syma107.com

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rbethman
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November 14, 2015 - 6:25 am

SF and ALL,

I always share my findings and "Ancient Chinese Secrets" with the Quad Copter community.  It is my pleasure, and I firmly believe it to be my duty!  Call me old fashioned if you wish.  No one will ever benefit from experience if it isn't shared.

Now having been out with the Phantom again, I managed to get it caught and flipped it down about 12 feet.  Dumb me!  I have one of my Amateur Radio Antennas that is #12 AWG insulated in a light gray.  Sure as crap, I managed to catch the Phantom on it, and down she went.

I am now learning how to work on the camera gimbal.  Another royal PIA!  I have found a few You Tube Videos that go into gimbal repair.  They have been pretty useful.  One specifically goes into the very back of the gimbal.  It takes you through the steps of removing the very back cover and shows how to re-establish the true horizontal position.  That has helped.  However, the Vision + App on my smartphone keeps showing that the gimbal lock is in place when it isn't.

Now, I'm going to tell ALL of you folks - THIS IS NOT FOR THOSE THAT ARE HAM-HANDED!  The expensive film like connections and its entire length are VERY prone to break if one is NOT *extremely* careful and gentle!  I'm starting to get very close to MY zone of comfort-ability!  I now have determined that my issue is NOT with the back plate adjustment that gets true horizontal, BUT I am dealing with the SIDE of the gimbal that controls the tilt up/down of the camera.  I've gone in as far as I can without breaking this film connection "cable", (Sic - I have no other description of it!), and I have been really pushing the envelope! 

I plan on one more foray into the back plate and try to get the closest I can to true horizontal!  I'm going to break out my machinist's square and give it hell! (Pardon my language please.)  It is a time consuming and tedious procedure. 

When I power up, I can feel the gimbal motors sort of twitching.  That back plate one is just a little twitchy.  The side one is my major concern!  It heats up a fair amount.  The worst part being that there really is NO access to the innards!  I run squarely into a very tight loop of the bloody ribbon!  I can see other screws when I take the curved cover over the ribbon, but really am fearful that I will break it should I continue going deeper.  I reloaded the firmware for the FC200 camera, and it seemed to help a little.  Then I resorted to pressing the little button on the plate toward the front left of the entire camera mount.  Then powered it up again.  It seems that this helped more by this complete reset of the mount.

Still not sure if I am making any "real" headway.  Today is a NO FLY day!  Winds are running upwards of 14MPH plus!  Definitely in or past the recommended flying conditions as is in the manual!  Trust me!  I've flown on the ragged edge of the wind region!  It takes every bit of concentration along with pushing my flying abilities and reflexes.

So it may well be a few days before the winds then rain pass before I can get her back out and work things through!  I *AM* going to whip this camera and mount issues! 

Regards, Old Sarge

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rbethman
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November 16, 2015 - 6:18 am

Oh heck!  Screw this NO FLY crap!  I'm flying around my own house!  Besides *IF* the *beatch* that manages the Airport Operations at the Class D Airport can't keep the full sized Helicopters to follow the Rules and Regulations, [ They are flying less than 2K feet above ground level! ], then she can kiss my pattootie!

I'm sick and tired of the Rules only apply to *SOME*!

Ran through two batteries worth just now.  Have to let them cool down before charging them.  Also need to work on the Camera mount/gimbal some more!  It still squawks, and it is definitely got a tilt in the horizontal.  At least the vertical tilt is working as it should.  I'll probably end up procuring another camera gimbal mount.  The camera itself is okay.  But I guess if I get another mount/gimbal, I'd kick it up one level and get a Zenmuse one.  Then I'd have to decide how much I can afford to spend on that AND another camera.

I must have forgot that I made another order for Blades!  A double batch came in yesterday!  Now I'm set in that department.

If this camera/mount thing bugs me too much, I'll rip her off the Quad!  Cheaper and I enjoy flying entirely too much.  Pic and Video really had no serious interest.  It is interesting though.

Regards, Old Sarge

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rbethman
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December 15, 2015 - 7:13 pm

Sarge back again!

Well, the registration begins here in the US begins on 21 December.

The penalties for NOT doing so AND getting tagged, are way too high to NOT do so.

I've searched this part of Virginia, and the only flying club that allows Copters *only* allows the single rotor and tail boom type.  I can't remotely go back to that again!  They are just as costly as Phantoms and the wildly more expensive multi-rotor jobs.

Looks like I have no choice but to register mine, and just not fly any more.  I know, it sucks!

I will probably be looking to find a home for it.

 

See Y'all Again!

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Redfive
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December 16, 2015 - 5:41 pm

Why not set up your own club then you are legal. I'm sure a local land owner will give permission to fly over their land.

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Syma Freak
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December 16, 2015 - 9:22 pm
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I believe we might be over reacting, sure rules come out and license costs, all governments see a opportunity in a new concept that comes out to screw money from everyone, soon here in Australia you might have to buy a license to ride a pedal bike, what they kill is free enterprise with massive amount of people employed to build quads etc, also how are they going to police it? a new task force-pretty sure the quad by a private people like us might just film a terrorist act one day and save lives, what will they say then= we can with mobiles, also mobile filming is by far more dangerous via perverts and nutters than you and me flying a quad in a park or garden..

So watch out the sas might be looking into your home as you fly a mini quad in your kitchen -lol

"Fly like a butterfly sting like a Syma" http://syma107.com

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rbethman
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December 28, 2015 - 6:09 pm

SF, Redfive, and ALL others:

Old Sarge Back at Y'all!

I am NOT taking it apart NOR am I selling it!  Yes - I am registered. Why you may ask?  It is the Law as it currently stands!

Now, this is simply avoiding the Fine for NOT doing so.

So, Y'all hang loose!  The "fight" isn't over yet!

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JamDJ
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January 1, 2016 - 2:05 am
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Hey Sarge !!

  Just curious.... Where did you place your registration # on your copters?

I'm getting mine here after I write this post. FAA says it has to be visible

in close proximity then suggests under the battery compartment.  ??

  Personally, I'll be proud of mine and am going to the hobby shop today

to get some dip-and-slip decals to put mine on!

  I understand the fee is $5.00 (US) but then we get reimbursed, so why bother

charging us? Anyway, it's the law now and I live too close to Harrisburg Int'l

Airport to fool around with it. Keep in touch on here and Happy New Year! 

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