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Those darn cracks!
1112 11 2017-9-2
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Betamace
lvl.4
Flight distance : 2133 ft
United States
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Forum mods are not going to like this but feel the need to share my experience on this subject. This post is not intended by any means to be a testamony.
First, a little history.... My first stress crack showed up last March during the first week of flying my factory supplied refurb. The crack actually grew in length as I was watching. I simply applied a few drops of Weld-On 4 along the crack. A month later, there were no new cracks and the crack that I had fixed could not even be seen so I decided to install cheap vinyl motor plates to spread out the pressure points around the screw holes and maybe give me a few more months of crack free flying.

This week I had to replace the center board (that's another story) and found 7 new cracks that had formed under the motor plates. The crack I had previously repaired was still intact! It's sad but those cheap motor plates did not prevent any new cracks from forming. Once again, I used Weld-On 4 on all the new cracks before reinstalling the plates. Made sure this time all the screws were not too tight, just snug.

Weld-On 4 is not a glue or epoxy filler, it's a very thin clear liquid that flows into cracks and semi-disolves the vinyl which then quickly re-bonds. The product evaporates completely so there's no dried lumps remaining on the surface. If you apply the product along a crack it will flow into the crack and after the vinyl cures the crack completely disappears, only leaving a slightly rough surface texture where the product was applied. If you try to wipe off any excess product while it is still wet, the softened vinyl will also be wiped off.

Ok, now the part about the center board.....   

I had to replace a compass module because of my drone not flying straight and gave numerous compass data errors. The process of getting the shells to separate became a real battle. In all, I learned to only press in the sides of the bottom shell with your thumbs to release the clips. The bottom shell above the battery bay is too hard to press inwards with my thumbs.... Don't pry it with a screw driver. It seems that I killed my centerboard with a screw driver! Afterwards, it would not link with the controller no matter what I tried. I was considering on putting it up for sale on ebay for parts but instead bought another centerboard.
The new old stock center board came with FW 1.4.2 pre-installed that would not work at all with my controllers newer firmware so after a few forced upgrades that never completed, I decided to let the app do the upgrade. Once again, my refurb flies like it should!


2017-9-2
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Epicdoom
lvl.4
Flight distance : 340620 ft
United States
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haven't tried the plastic plates I did 3D print out a set for my nephew to try out I had already bought the metal ones because I found a crack on a brand new bird within a couple weeks fixed the crack with epoxy and installed plates just removed them after a full month of flying so far so good old crack still fixed and no new cracks. I love weld-on used it on most plastic stuff I have but its so thin I didn't wand to risk it flowing into the inside of the drone especially with plastic covered wires inside. I do have a plastic welder but its difficult to use temps have to be just right and fill rods in all the different plastics are not available.
2017-9-2
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RedHotPoker
Captain
Flight distance : 165105 ft
Canada
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All too frequently seen cracks. Sounds like you got them licked. Good stuff.

There must have been a batch with poorer quality shell material.



RedHotPoker
2017-9-2
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solentlife
Second Officer
Flight distance : 1087530 ft
Latvia
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Weld On ... is a brand name for MEK ..... a plastic solvent used by plastic model builders ...

I have Metal plates ... they don't stop the cracks appearing completely - but they slow them down.
The problem is the design and material used.

In fitting the plates - it is important to make sure the two shell screws are fitted correctly with their tubes to brace the arms, as well as the motor screws  ... they relieve the stress that carries through to the shell from flight thrust.

Nigel
2017-9-3
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timnwcove
lvl.3
Flight distance : 87428 ft
Canada
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RedHotPoker Posted at 2017-9-2 12:37
All too frequently seen cracks. Sounds like you got them licked. Good stuff.

There must have been a batch with poorer quality shell material.

For some odd reason that made me lol.   thanks rhp !
2017-9-3
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RedHotPoker
Captain
Flight distance : 165105 ft
Canada
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timnwcove Posted at 2017-9-3 14:08
For some odd reason that made me lol.   thanks rhp !

Like an innuendo. Double entendre even. Wicked grin...
Certainly not dry humor... Ha




RedHotPoker



2017-9-3
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timnwcove
lvl.3
Flight distance : 87428 ft
Canada
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RedHotPoker Posted at 2017-9-3 17:04
Like an innuendo. Double entendre even. Wicked grin...
Certainly not dry humor... Ha

you are a very cunning linguist indeed ! lol
2017-9-4
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DJI Susan
Administrator
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I'm sorry for the inconvenience. As you mentioned, we do not suggest to repair by your end. For official refurbished units, the warranty is same as new drones. Take case when you test the performance.
2017-9-5
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RedHotPoker
Captain
Flight distance : 165105 ft
Canada
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timnwcove Posted at 2017-9-4 13:36
you are a very cunning linguist indeed ! lol

Yes, it comes from reading the thrillers... Ah, haha.

I think some cracks are simply blemishes, and or character marks, of distinction.


If you want a prefect drone, leave it in the box, or on the store shelf. Chuckles

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholders.


RedHotPoker


2017-9-5
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solentlife
Second Officer
Flight distance : 1087530 ft
Latvia
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"I think some cracks are simply blemishes, and or character marks, of distinction" .............

Are you serious ? Do you not think people are capable of distinguishing 'marks' from cracks ? AND considering how many peoples P3's suffer from them ? Not only original shells but replacement shells as well ?

Nigel
2017-9-7
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AlanHd
Second Officer
Flight distance : 797365 ft
United Kingdom
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Hi,

I'm a new owner of a new phantom 3 standard ( not even unboxed yet) and reading this thread has got me a little worried, is cracking something I need to worry about, should I fit support plates  ASAP.
Alan
2017-9-7
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solentlife
Second Officer
Flight distance : 1087530 ft
Latvia
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Contrary to DJI mods ... I strongly advise to fit the plates to reduce the onset and development of cracks. The plates do not eliminate them completely but slow them down.

I strongly believe to fit BEFORE cracks appear .. and then at moderate intervals to check by removal of plates - the condition. A check once a month or maybe two should be OK.

But make sure ALL 6 screws are used with the two thinner using the tobe standoffs. Those two stiffen the assembly at that weak narrow part.

Nigel
2017-9-7
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