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First Flyaway!
783 26 2018-3-2
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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Heavy snow yesterday, then a brief window of sun persuaded me to try and get some snow views of my bit of the south coast. As I lifted off into a hover, the landing mat blew away, it's pegs easily pulling free of the six inch snow layer in my garden. That should have been the first clue. At 10m the AC was fairly stable despite wearing it's new prop guards. I pressed record, lifted up to about 70m, checked my display for framing and suddenly the Mavic was 100m away. I checked the screen again to check I was facing home, and when I looked back it was 200m away and disappearing rapidly...
Seconds of what-do-I-do came and went. I'm flying LOS but my eyes (nobody's) are good enough to see a speck at 1000ft. I lowered the gimbal to see where I was, and guess what? It was all white below. The sensible option was to land while I had a signal so I brought the AC down from 80m, down, down until at 20-odd metres, the display said "Landing". Which the craft did. Long story short, I had an exciting, bracing, half mile uphill yomp over farmland, gates, sh*t and more, following the last location point, till my beloved Mavic and I were tearfully reunited in a field.

Lessons galore learned today. Questions? Even more. When I thought I was high, I was low, because the drone was uphill of the take-off position. Is that right? Should I have engaged the retro rockets and sported my way back against the wind. Should I have stayed indoors?  Feel free to pile on.

spot the drone

spot the drone
2018-3-2
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Danny-B-
Second Officer
Flight distance : 306640 ft
United Kingdom
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Wind is your enemy, never fly in winds above 15mph max, personally i never fly above 12ish ... and remember that the wind on the surface is massively lower than at height ... search google for "windy" you can check wind speeds at surface and whatever height you specify, it also comes as an app too.

Sport mode would have gave you some extra punch in the wind but it sounds to me like it must have been a very windy day to throw it that far off as qucikly ... its not really a fly away as you had full control of the Mav, you just couldnt combat the wind ... think yourself lucky


www.windy.com

right now in my location winds are 16mph and at 100m winds are up to 26mph ... huge difference! and thats not counting gusts...
2018-3-2
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A CW
Captain
Flight distance : 11458084 ft
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United Kingdom
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Altitude on your device is shown against the home point and not the ground - you need to judge how steep the gradient will be. If the drone is flying up a mountain side it will show hundreds of feet on the app as it climbs but may only be 10' above the hill. Always best to maintain VLOS, especially in sub zero temperatures and when flying in unfamiliar areas.
2018-3-2
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LoSBoL
First Officer
Flight distance : 271650 ft
Netherlands
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It sounds like you've made the right call to me by bringing her down!
2018-3-2
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Bulldog
First Officer
Flight distance : 816158 ft
United States
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Or it could have been a fly away........
2018-3-2
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Cameleon
Second Officer
Flight distance : 60394 ft
United Kingdom
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LoSBoL Posted at 2018-3-2 10:38
It sounds like you've made the right call to me by bringing her down!

Yup, sounds like the right action to me too.

Been far too windy up here for flying. We have 3-4ft snow drifts in the road!
2018-3-2
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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Danny-B- Posted at 2018-3-2 10:32
Wind is your enemy, never fly in winds above 15mph max, personally i never fly above 12ish ... and remember that the wind on the surface is massively lower than at height ... search google for "windy" you can check wind speeds at surface and whatever height you specify, it also comes as an app too.

Sport mode would have gave you some extra punch in the wind but it sounds to me like it must have been a very windy day to throw it that far off as qucikly ... its not really a fly away as you had full control of the Mav, you just couldnt combat the wind ... think yourself lucky

Completely agree. Just being a bit keen. It's 10 years since we had snow like this here so I wanted a souvenir pic or two. I'll do screen caps off the video and that will have to do. I wasn't really worried, just didn't fancy a freezing cold walk in sub-zero windchill !
Thanks for your response.
2018-3-2
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 4199094 ft
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Ireland
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If you want to get your log checked. Just click on link below and follow instructions come back here and post your link.

http://www.phantomhelp.com/LogViewer/Upload/
2018-3-2
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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(Excuse the double post (now edited) I been unable to login for the past hour and the post disappeared.)
Thanks @A CW this comparative height thing is going to need some studying. If I’m on a hill flying LOS down into a valley, will the instruments read a negative height?
2018-3-2
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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Thanks @hallmark007.  I was surprised how quickly the Mavic moved off downwind. Had I switched to “map” and not worried about looking for landmarks in the snow, I could have simply reversed my course in Sport Mode. Ha! Simply! I wish.
2018-3-2
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Wyke
Second Officer
Flight distance : 33166 ft
United Kingdom
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I think the landing mat blowing away would’ve got me worried but glad you got it down safely.
2018-3-2
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Lamplighter55
Captain
Flight distance : 538596 ft
United Kingdom
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Lucky.... ;-)
2018-3-2
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HyLenz
First Officer
Flight distance : 1848182 ft
United States
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Dorset_Horn Posted at 2018-3-2 13:11
Excuse the double post! I been unable to login for the past hour.
Thanks @A CW this comparative height thing is going to need some studying. If I’m on a hill flying LOS down into a valley, will the instruments read a negative height?

will the instruments read a negative height?

Yes. i flew a waterfall from the top 0' and RC-App reading was -69 feet at 20' or so above water at the bottom...
2018-3-2
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rolling56
Captain
Flight distance : 138310 ft
United States
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HyLenz Posted at 2018-3-2 14:58
will the instruments read a negative height?

Yes. i flew a waterfall from the top 0' and RC-App reading was -69 feet at 20' or so above water at the bottom...

Does the Mavic correct itself (altitude) as you fly around as you're describing here? Does the RTH work correctly if you fly different heights like you're describing here? Just curious as i don't recall being in terrain similar to that.
2018-3-2
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Theppgcowboy
lvl.4
United States
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Did you try the pause button?
2018-3-2
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I don't care anymore
lvl.3
Flight distance : 476476 ft
United States
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That is scary stuff. I'd say solid choice by landing it. Thanks for sharing!
2018-3-2
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Timinator
lvl.4
Flight distance : 212359 ft
Canada
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Check the heading bug, turn the thing around 180 degrees and sport mode it back home! Otherwise, you're just blowin' in the wind.  
2018-3-2
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Jyunte
First Officer
Flight distance : 2103150 ft
United States
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rolling56 Posted at 2018-3-2 15:52
Does the Mavic correct itself (altitude) as you fly around as you're describing here? Does the RTH work correctly if you fly different heights like you're describing here? Just curious as i don't recall being in terrain similar to that.

The Mavic shows zero feet at the takeoff point; positive attitude if it increases height relative to the takeoff point; and negative altitude if you lose height relative to the take off point.... Going back to zero as you approach the takeoff point again.

The VPS will show your height above the surface of whatever you're flying above (ground, house, water, building, etc) if the surface is within about 30 ft of the aircraft.

Armed with both readings, you can tell how high you are, relative to your takeoff point, and how close you are to anything below you (as long as it's within 30 ft, and as long as the VPS can sense it). In this way, you can see that you're 500 feet up the mountain from where you took off (or 500 feet down the mountain!) but only 10 feet off the ground.
2018-3-2
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Bekaru Tree
Captain
Flight distance : 13703717 ft
South Africa
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considering the apparent wind strength you probably should not have launched, if thats how it was to start. whenever wind picks up always go immediately to sport - that should be reflex action. learn to gauge the wind, requires a bit of windy days practice. also when wind picks up first thing you should think about is going home or at least heading upwind if you do not want to go home. in windy situations flying upwind of home point is best. check the forum for posts about flying in wind - you will pick up a fair bit of information that you will not see on the manuals. good luck - glad to hear you got your drone back.
2018-3-2
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davidmartingraf
Captain
Flight distance : 24790023 ft
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United States
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Thanks for the story about your experience sorry to hear but it will certainly serve us well for the future.
2018-3-2
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HyLenz
First Officer
Flight distance : 1848182 ft
United States
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rolling56 Posted at 2018-3-2 15:52
Does the Mavic correct itself (altitude) as you fly around as you're describing here? Does the RTH work correctly if you fly different heights like you're describing here? Just curious as i don't recall being in terrain similar to that.

I have never used RTH, so i couldn't tell you.  Jyunte's explaination is correct...
2018-3-2
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Dog Flight
Second Officer
Flight distance : 3432156 ft
United States
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Who checks the wind before each flight?

You got her back that's what counts, lesson learned.
2018-3-2
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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Theppgcowboy Posted at 2018-3-2 16:02
Did you try the pause button?

No, I didn't think to. But consciously ignored the RTH as I didn't think it would work. It's like skidding on an icy road towards the back of a bus. Pressing harder and harder on the brakes doesn't have any effect.
2018-3-2
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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Bekaru Tree Posted at 2018-3-2 16:59
considering the apparent wind strength you probably should not have launched, if thats how it was to start. whenever wind picks up always go immediately to sport - that should be reflex action. learn to gauge the wind, requires a bit of windy days practice. also when wind picks up first thing you should think about is going home or at least heading upwind if you do not want to go home. in windy situations flying upwind of home point is best. check the forum for posts about flying in wind - you will pick up a fair bit of information that you will not see on the manuals. good luck - glad to hear you got your drone back.

Yep. Definitely unsuitable conditions for flying, certainly at any height. I may have to sit on my hands and wait for better days. It's frustrating not being to gain flight experience, when you can't fly, hence my decision to take the risk.
I'm pleased that the controlled landing worked and I recovered the Mavic. I wasn't able to get my car out of the snow , so 10 seconds later and it could have been a very long walk.
2018-3-3
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GrahamG
Second Officer
Flight distance : 73369 ft
United Kingdom
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If you have to use the pegs on your landing mat....go home.
2018-3-3
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Dorset_Horn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 57254 ft
United Kingdom
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Some really useful tips from members here, which have lead me to downloading the UAV app - a must-have IMHO. I couldn't get a meaningful file into PhantomHelp, so I registered with Airdata and uploaded yesterday's flight log. I was horrified to learn that the average wind speed for the flight was 23.2 mph, with a max gust of 46.3 mph!!
What was I thinking?
2018-3-3
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Brad Bilger
First Officer
Flight distance : 8683130 ft
United States
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You were very lucky. Consider it a lesson learned. And welcome to the club. Lol
2018-3-3
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