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Practice Day - Drone Home Safe
526 7 2018-1-21
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Kevin_d
lvl.4
Flight distance : 4219 ft
United States
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Today was day 1 for my MPP after a crash and replacement. I decided to take it easy, not worry about capturing any video, and just fly some drills to try and get more familiar with it.

The first thing I practiced with was the PAUSE button. Ya. I can see how that can be a drone saver. Whatever I was doing, the PAUSE button stopped it very quickly. This, I think, will be the button I reach for when I get confused. I don't think I can come up with a scenario where it wouldn't be helpful.

The rest of the time was spent trying to fly smoothly back and forth on a line, in a box and eventually a figure 8. The thing I learned here is that the Mavic doesn't turn on a dime when in motion. Obviously it does when hovering. I can't run up on an obstacle (small tree branches, wires) and expect an immediate resoponse to control input. You got to know what's ahead and for me, that's kind of a problem.

My eyesight isn't so bad but for some reason I have the following problems:

1) I can't quite tell the position of a fixed object in relation to the drone. Am I going to clear the tree or am I running right into it? This goes for both lateral and vertical clearance. The drone is so small it always looks like it is heading directly at any tree in the vacinity whenever it moves in the genral direction. I'm not sure practice is going to help me here. Maybe I need to visit the eye doctor.

2) I can't tell the orientation of the drone when it's a hundred feet away from me. This is especially true when I'm filming as the red lights turn off. I can usually see the light in the rear so I know when the rear end is facing me. When I don't see that rear light I have no clue which way the drone's going to run. I think I should probably not film all the time like I do, or not have the front lights auto shut off when filming. Probably wouldn't make much difference in daylight (home movies, nothing I'd show except to dearest friends and worse enemies).

I'm starting to get the orientation of the RC aligned with the drone. I found if I think of counter-clockwise and clockwise instead of left and right I can predict more accurately what the drone will do regardless of which angle it is flying from or two me. Pushing left is always a counter-clockwise rotation. Maybe I'm over-thinking this but it seems to be an anchor point. I'd say I've gone from almost 100% misdirection to maybe 60% now. I mean, if you watched me fly you'd almost always have seen me jink in one direction then quickly move to the other direction. That's starting to happen less often.

Another amazing thing I found. I'm on a 1 acre lot. Beside me is my neighbor's 1 acre lot that is only used for river access. Before the drone, if you'd asked me how much space I have to roam I'd have said 2 acres of clear space. Actually, it turns out, there's a lot more obstacles in those 2 acres than I'd have ever noticed before flying the drone.

The phone dropped out once. I don't know why. Airplane mode with no wifi or anything turned on. No SIM. I'm using the short cable to the side today. I looked down and it was back at the android desktop like the application just quit. I was able to start it back up and it was OK. Earlier, the app gave me fits trying to register. Kept saying I was scanning the wrong barcode - but I wasn't. Finally it just quit asking me. I was going to try Litchi but I'm going to hold off on that a bit. It's installed but I'll not use it until I feel a bit more comfortable with the basic DJI GO 4 app.

I'd still like to find a book, booklet, video tutorial that just gave practice challenges and things to try out. I'm getting the impression though that I'm making much to much out of this and others are finding safe flying second nature. Until I can predict with excellent accuracy what the drone will do with a particular contol input and in various situations, I don't feel comfortable leaving my yard.

Kind of a successful day. Got to fly, practice and even bring home a drone still in good condition. I'll count that as success.

2018-1-21
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A CW
Captain
Flight distance : 12810843 ft
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United Kingdom
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Congrats on a successful first flight with your new MPP! Many more to come.
2018-1-21
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BumblerBee
First Officer
Flight distance : 609816 ft
Norway
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Very good observations.
You are not alone in feeling that the drone is always trying to get sucked in by the trees and other small objects
Try having the red lights always on, also when filming. It's only when filming reflective surfaces or at night, that the lights are in the way. You may also look into a strobe cree light. I have one attached to my bird, and it greatly helps with reading its orientation visually.
And no, you are not over-analysing - you are practising. Pilots (myself included) should do a lot more of it. As you wrote, Mavic does not turn on the dime, so practising coordinated turns is especially important - apply a small amount of left bank when doing left turn at speed (both left and right sticks go left when turning left and right when turning right). The greater the speed, the more bank needs to be applied. I started on this practice in the autumn, but it's too cold to fly regularly now... Waiting for spring for longer practise runs.
2018-1-21
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fansf77370fb
First Officer
Flight distance : 1008924 ft
United States
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When I practice I stay up high. There is nothing to hit when you are 100 feet up. When you’re down low that’s when people have problems.
2018-1-21
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Falcon16
Second Officer
Flight distance : 36791 ft
United States
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Great observations with your first time out. I too have been practicing in about a 1 acre size area.....boxes and figure 8's. I bout some cree lights to see if that would help me out but i want to learn by using the maps and orientation on the RC. Have fun and enjoy.
2018-1-21
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DJI Thor
Administrator
Flight distance : 13602 ft
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That's good to keep practising and be familiar with the drone. We advise flying the drone in an open area and avoid the possibilities of the collision. And for the orientation of the drone, you can refer to the attitude indicator on the app. You can refer to the tutorial below.
Practice more and I believe you will be a drone expert soon.
2018-1-22
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Theppgcowboy
lvl.4
United States
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DJI Thor Posted at 2018-1-22 22:58
That's good to keep practising and be familiar with the drone. We advise flying the drone in an open area and avoid the possibilities of the collision. And for the orientation of the drone, you can refer to the attitude indicator on the app. You can refer to the tutorial below.
Practice more and I believe you will be a drone expert soon.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gf9PGfLXEsI&t=80s

DJIThor, that is a great nugget about the attitude screen. Thanks.
2018-1-23
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Vincent.
Second Officer
Flight distance : 459738 ft
United States
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fansf77370fb Posted at 2018-1-21 14:37
When I practice I stay up high. There is nothing to hit when you are 100 feet up. When you’re down low that’s when people have problems.

I confirm that, flying low even slowly is taking more risk for me. Every time I take off, I try to go over any obstacles like tree before anything else.
2018-1-23
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