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Caffeinated
lvl.1

Australia
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Took my P3A out for its first spin today... and it was fantastic!!!!

All very gentle, however at the end when bringing it home I fell back into my smaller quad habbits of flying it back to me close to the ground, skirted a tree when I cought a wind gust at the wrong moment and had a low speed crash about 1.5m above the ground.  Didn't seem to bad, but heavy quad means nothng is ever 'minor'.

The top gimbal vibration plate snapped off at the two corners that were attached, but luckily the two ribbon cables alcctually disconnected at the couplers and I've repaired that and it still works (well as far as I can tell).

The other damage, strangely, was on the two rear arms.  Both have bulged slightly right where the first non-motor screw is.  I am presuming it must have landed that way.

The motors still fire up but I don't know what I need to check or fix before testing it carefully (if indeed it is safe to do so).

Any thoughts (pictures attached)

phantomdamage1.jpg phantomdamage2.jpg
phantomdamage2.jpg
2015-5-28
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sploodge
Captain
Flight distance : 809350 ft
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United Kingdom
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The main question will be, have you twisted an arm or is it just a slight popping of the case you could try and visually inspect a bit more make sure it all looks level. You could power it on at home with NO props on to see if it seems OK. Check for vibrations. From the pictures is really does look OK. I would clean the muck off the motors incase some gone in .




Remember to buy extra propellers and one or two spare batteries to keep you flying




2015-5-28
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Caffeinated
lvl.1

Australia
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They don't seem twisted.  Kind of looks to me like the whole thing is normally under some pressure, with the screws holding that in.  It's as if the bump caused the plastic around the screw to pop/break so now it's just stable but popped out.

Light was failing fast down here in Aus but I at least took it to the end of the street, put it up 15 meters and rotated it around.  Didn't seem jerky or off in any way which is promising.  
I'll take it for a flight tomorrow and see how I go.
2015-5-28
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sploodge
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Caffeinated Posted at 2015-5-29 15:38
They don't seem twisted.  Kind of looks to me like the whole thing is normally under some pressure,  ...

Keep it away from trees for a few flight now then.. Hope its OK for you.

Make sure you get some video to check for vibrations in that and maybe use the spare set of propellers if you do ( props might have taken a bang also ).


Remember to buy extra propellers and one or two spare batteries to keep you flying

2015-5-28
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jon.jongodfrey
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I would remove the screws from the arms affected, then pop it back together and re-tighten the screws but don't over tighten.... but that's just me. :-)
2015-5-29
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Mark97564
Second Officer
Flight distance : 2067749 ft
United States
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If he didn't try doing that before posting here I would think he is in trouble...  For sure a 10....  Lol
2015-5-29
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JtrJr-Droner
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Flight distance : 4341 ft
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Caff,

Looks to me like the screw post broke for the screw just under the bulge. It happened to me on my P2. If that's what it is, it's part of the top shell. I was able to remove the top shell and remove the broken post from the screw. Mine was a relatively clean break at the bottom of the post (I think I have a pic somewhere if you need me to post it). I was able to "dry" fit it back in place. It's a very small piece with an aluminum insert in it for the screw. I took a pair of tweezers an repeatedly "dry" fitted it until I was comfortable on precisely how it had to go in. I then put a dab of good quality crazy glue on it and the base inside the shell. I quickly put it in p,ace and pulled it back off to mesh the glue and then immediately put it back in place. I held it in place for a good minute. Using great care to keep the glue from going into the aluminum insert. I let it sit like that for 24 hours. These posts are held in place by small plastic cross-members with little cavities in them. I then took a small amount of the crazy glue and filled a small cavity by each post to give them all a little added support. I let it sit for another 24 hours. I put the upper shell on and have better than 100 flight on it now with no apparent issues. There is a very slight gap where it separated like yours but isn't noticed unless you really look at it closely. The most important part is making sure the post goes in as exactly as possible. Mine was a tad high and tweaked to one side very, very slightly after curing. I was able to shave a hair off of the top of the post with a razor and when I put it back together I put the screw with the broken post in first. I have taken the shell apart twice since then and I'm obviously very careful with that particular screw but I haven't had any issue with it. Hope that's what it is and you can repair it as I did.

Jerry
2015-5-29
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gil
Captain
Flight distance : 1378107 ft
United States
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I agree with JtrJr-Droner's assessment.  I fixed a friends Phantom whose damage was a bit worse.  It had open cracks in the top shell and broke off the screw post around the motor opening like yours.  The warp on the bottom shell was fixed with some careful heat application and we ordered a new shell to replace the top.  I've since discovered from another friend that the top shell from a Phantom 2 will fit a Phantom 3 (with some exceptions)  and could be used until the repair parts for the Phantom 3 become available.
P3_03-TopShellCompared.jpg


2015-5-29
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gil
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JtrJr-Droner Posted at 2015-5-29 20:21
Caff,

Looks to me like the screw post broke for the screw just under the bulge. It happened to me o ...

Jerry -- regarding opening the P3 shell, are there any clever tips you discovered to undo those locking tabs?  Whew, my 1st time was a booger!
2015-5-29
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JtrJr-Droner
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Flight distance : 4341 ft
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gil Posted at 2015-5-30 03:12
Jerry -- regarding opening the P3 shell, are there any clever tips you discovered to undo those lo ...

Gil,

I haven't opened the P3 yet just the P2. I've read that there are tabs on the P3 but haven't encountered them yet. Good luck and let me know the "secret".

Jerry
2015-5-29
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JtrJr-Droner
Captain
Flight distance : 4341 ft
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gil Posted at 2015-5-30 03:12
Jerry -- regarding opening the P3 shell, are there any clever tips you discovered to undo those lo ...

Gil,

You're alright! You get where I'm coming from. I knew that you knew some $hit!

Jerry
2015-5-29
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Caffeinated
lvl.1

Australia
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OK... so it turns out you were right... on lots of fronts.

Indeed on the back two arms the inner metal inserts for the screws had had the plastic around it broken.  Looks like it will happen a lot with any impact above a bump to be honest.
It is also true that opening the case is a PAIN.  I'll be honest and say that there are more than a couple of 'tiny screwdriver lever marks' along the edges.

Once those plastic circles crack they become a real pain.  I had to clean them out to varying degrees then reseat the metal with a small degree of force (actually used a pair of pliers gently).

All told I'm not entirely convinced that it is now any more or less structurally sound than before I did the 'repair' but it isn't bulging any more so that's something.

I'll definitely get a new top shell when they are available, although I'm not looking forward to taking the damn thing off again LOL.

Also yesterday (before I did the 'repair' today I did take it for a full flight spin and seems ok.  Unfortunately I only got one decent flight before the slight mishap so didn't have a huge baseline to tell if there are any difference, but seemed to fly perfectly fine to me.

Thanks for the advice!
2015-6-2
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mswall
Second Officer
Flight distance : 39695 ft
United States
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Glad it's still working ok for you.  You now have an official "Road Warrior" model....
2015-6-2
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Caffeinated
lvl.1

Australia
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mswall@mac.com Posted at 2015-6-2 22:56
Glad it's still working ok for you.  You now have an official "Road Warrior" model....

Indeed.

Actually I swapped the props to the spare set, the originals seemed fine to be honest but had grass stains, and that plus the reseat of the arms makes it look back to a 'clean' look.  The lever marks are there but not so obvious.  Thinking I might paint my top shell for fun since I'll be getting a new one soon-ish anyway.

One question though....

As mentioned the gimbal plate broke.  Basically the top plate snapped at the two corners that had the pins to the bottom plate.  The ribbon cables unplugged but did not break.

So basically I used the 2 spare pins to reconnect the bottom plate after reconnecting the ribbon cables and testing, then glued the other two arms back on for aesthetics and less wobble.

This means now that the bottom plate is now connected via all four pins not just the diagonal 2 it comes out of the box with.  I'm not noticing any vibration but wondering if it is a BAD thing to have the 2 extra pins in there.
2015-6-3
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JtrJr-Droner
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Flight distance : 4341 ft
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Caffeinated Posted at 2015-6-4 08:34
Indeed.

Actually I swapped the props to the spare set, the originals seemed fine to be honest but ...

Caff,

I sure wouldn't be worried about doing so. If there is an ill effect it will show in the quality of your recorded video. I don't think the extra pins will have any impact of the flight characteristics of the bird. If that's what you're asking. Glad to see you taking it on the chin and getting back in the air! Safe flying!

Jerry
2015-6-3
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Caffeinated
lvl.1

Australia
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JtrJr-Droner Posted at 2015-6-4 12:13
Caff,

I sure wouldn't be worried about doing so. If there is an ill effect it will show in the qu ...

LOL, have to take it on the chin when it's your own silly fault

Learnt a lot from it, and after reviewing everything I could review I think, basically, that I hadn't had enough experience with FPV.  I'd looked down at the screen and completely misjudged distance due to the wide angled lens.

Had a great flight last night at twillight though (being able to see the LED's really helps, I found it easier than daylight) and just glad that my 'learning experience' was a recoverable one.
2015-6-3
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migs
lvl.1

United Kingdom
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I'm not necessarily advising or advocating this but, in terms of having to open the case, perhaps one of these would do? It's the tool used to open mobile phone cases etc.

Assuming it's strong enough, damage to the case could probably be avoided.

Of course, I say this without having even looked at the clips...
2015-6-4
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