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Near Crash Incident
817 19 2016-1-24
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Sir Shepherd
Second Officer

United States
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I haven't flown in a couple weeks due to weather conditions.  Beautiful weather here for the first time in over a week. I took out the inspire 1 this early afternoon, did a pre-flight check list and checked battery too. It was at 65%. I know, I know, that I shouldn't be flying at 65%. What I did was took flight in our side yard, went about 30 ft which was as brave as I wanted to go. Sure enough the battery went from 65% to 6% in 2 seconds flat. I decended at a fast rate to get her down, the landing gear went into auto and within a second, if that, I was landing. It was not a nice soft landing but a rush landing. Checked over everthing and she looks fine.

Moral to this story is this... do NOT fly without 100% charge. I state this in mulitpule post. I have now tested knowing that this is factual. It amazes me and I understand what others have experieneced.

What a RUSH!!!!

I expected this, I truly did and even told my wife what I was doing before hand. Truth is for the newbies out there and others. If you take flight on a battery that has less than 100% charge, when the battery has been sitting for a day or more. The result is crash! You better know what your doing and be confident. I've been flying R/C for over three decades. Even so I've had my fair share of crashes.

My question is this... What if you are not going to fly for a month? Or a few weeks? How do you keep the battery from auto discharging? What is the best method to store a battery that you plan not to use for a few weeks, if not more?

I hope this helps others...
2016-1-24
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teamnest1
Second Officer
Flight distance : 18484 ft
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United States
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Glad everything was okay
2016-1-24
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Jwmulcahey
lvl.2
Flight distance : 396142 ft
United States
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If you plan on not flying for awhile you keep the battery between 30-50% I believe, I usually drop mine to 40% and haven't had any issues yet.  Glad to hear you saved the bird from eating the dirt completely.
2016-1-24
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rodger
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Flight distance : 15812070 ft
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You are going to receive a ton of opinions on this one. Glad you survived the flight and live on to fly another day.
2016-1-24
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R&L Aerial
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Flight distance : 298100 ft
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I did the same thing last summer, it will definitely get the heart pumping watching your 4500 dollar bird start settling into a stand of trees, makes me sick just thinking about it.
2016-1-24
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Sir Shepherd
Second Officer

United States
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My big question is… when you set the battery at 10 days to discharge, how can you keep it from doing this if it is not a good thing to do? Everyone talks about not letting it discharge, period. Or it can cause serious issues. My flight today was in a controlled environment and I was prepared for what happened. Not to say that it didn't scare the crap out of me.  
2016-1-24
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Jwmulcahey
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Flight distance : 396142 ft
United States
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If the battery enters discharge it discharges to 65% (from my understanding) so as long as you keep it under that level it will not enter auto discharge. You can find more information from PaulKerry's battery thread on issues people have seen from allowing the battery to discharge.
2016-1-24
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RichJ53
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SS

I am surprised you flew at 65% specially after all the discussions and videos on the battery post between Paul / others and I...

Glad you were able to save everything.

Rich
2016-1-24
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Sir Shepherd
Second Officer

United States
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RichJ53 Posted at 2016-1-24 18:59
SS

I am surprised you flew at 65% specially after all the discussions and videos on the battery pos ...

@Rich - I did this on purpose for test results. I also was prepared and ready for the drop. It did exactly what I thought it would do. But… I won't test that out again. I couldn't help myself from trying this out to see if this is really going on with others. I now confirm that it will drop your birdie out of the sky without a doubt.


It did amaze me how fast the drop in battery performance occured from 65% to nothing in a couple seconds. And this is the problem for newbies that go out and purchase an inspire 1. Most do not know this and this results in crashes.

I truly think DJI should make note of this and place a warning in the manual to protect others from having a crash. After all they do a NFZ and this is just as important to prevent damage or injury to life. This is an ongoing issue that needs to be addressed. At least I was waiting for the clock to end and was ready for the fast landing. But I will admit, again, that it scared the living crap out of me.


2016-1-24
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RichJ53
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Sir Shepherd Posted at 2016-1-24 18:26
@Rich - I did this on purpose for test results. I also was prepared and ready for the drop. It did  ...

SS

Yup, it just drops out quick... DJI I hope is working on giving us the option to disable the auto discharge feature.... I know they are working on many things and hope this makes the top of the list.

Rich
2016-1-24
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DJI-Tim
DJI team

Hong Kong
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There is no way to protect the battery from auto-discharge for storage.  Battery has to be stored at 50-60% charge in a room temperature dry place.
Always take off fully charged . Forum folks know all this stuff, but newbies don't  so i like the idea of putting warning in the manual or even aircraft itself
2016-1-24
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RichJ53
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DJI-Tim Posted at 2016-1-24 19:45
There is no way to protect the battery from auto-discharge for storage.  Battery has to be stored at ...

Hey Tim,

I was hoping that your engineers at DJI are listening to our request for a way to disable the auto discharge. We would like the option not to use this feature.... please

I hope they can come up with something.

I always charge the battery before flight....

Rich
2016-1-24
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MJones
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Flight distance : 74783 ft
United States
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If the battery were truly at 65% of its rated capacity, it would fly no differently than when a fully charged battery is flown from 100% down to 65% and continuing to be flown from 65% down to 30% as it is on almost every flight.  The issue seems to be that for some reason, the system does not know what the true capacity of the battery is if not starting at 100% charge.  I like many ALWAYS start with a full charge but would appreciate being able to use whatever capacity is left at any time.  

I thought this issue was sorted out in the latest update but apparently not.  Then again, it might be a hardware design problem with the battery electronics, not solvable with firmware alone.

Regards,

Mike
2016-1-24
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Sir Shepherd
Second Officer

United States
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MJones - it is still an issue. I did this test to find facts. Fact is that if you leave your battery unattended for a week or so, take flight at less than 100% (without a new charge), your inspire 1 will drop like a ton of bricks within seconds. My wife thought I was crazy for even doing what I did. But, I wanted to know for myself and validate this. I also knew NOT to fly 100ft and at a low distance. I will not attempt this again as I just don't have a few thousand laying around.

But this is an issue that needs to be corrected. You hear of newbies getting their inspire 1, flying without a full charge and then sadly coming to the forum broken hearted. We all know this too well. If DJI could place a warning notice in the manual to fly only with 100% charge this would be wonderful. It would be great too if you had the option of not allowing the battery to discharge at 10 days. I have no idea why this is standard?

I can honestly tell you that those that have crashed due to the charge on the battery, I know how they feel and I didn't even damage my inspire 1. But it felt like someone kicked me in the gut. I was in control but at the same time crapping my pants.
2016-1-25
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Gootch
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MJones Posted at 2016-1-25 00:53
If the battery were truly at 65% of its rated capacity, it would fly no differently than when a full ...

Well said, I have taken off and made a pass or two but wanted to wait for the next shot, landed and took off again. 65% is more than half capacity. Should last 10 minutes or so........ Shouldn't it?
2016-1-25
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Sir Shepherd
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United States
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@ Gootch - if you just charged your battery within the day and take flight, land, take flight, land again and have just 65% and take off the same day you should be just fine. It's leaving the battery unattended for 24 hours that for whatever reason causes a serious drop in energy. Resulting in an instant crash. So… think of it like this. If you charge your battery today and don't use it for a few days, you will most likely not have a full charge and will result in something going wrong. It might appear from the data readings that you are at 98% or 100% but it is far from the truth.

Here is what I don't understand...
DJI-Tim can you chime in on this question? Ok, if you set your discharge at 10 days? What happens in 10 days? Does the battery drain to 0 - 5 % - 10%? This is something I don't understand. Before I ran the test I didn't fly for about 2 weeks or so and the batteries had 65% or so. When I tested and took flight I was ready for a dead drop and a fast one at that. And well… I had a controlled drop and the battery went dead.

The battery is the heart of the inspire 1. We all depend on the battery to function correctly. DJI should make some adjustments. I love DJI and I am not here to beat them up! Heck, I love their products. But there are some problems that need addressing.
I can't wait till the FLIR comes out. I'll be in line waiting for the purchase. I can then check on livestock on the land at night. We have coyotes that attempt to gain access to the land and with FLIR you can get a birds eye when you hear them sound off like a pack of hyenas!






2016-1-25
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Westwoodfilms.c
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Canada
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R&L Aerial  Posted at 2016-1-24 18:27
I did the same thing last summer, it will definitely get the heart pumping watching your 4500 dollar ...

Much better than landing in the Ocean. That would be horrible to watch...
2016-1-25
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Gootch
lvl.2

United States
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Sir Shepard, I understand completely what is being discussed here..... Thank you. My question gets back to many of the other issues lately.... 65% should be 65% pretty simple stuff. These batteries are very expensive because we are told they are "intelligent"  but obviously not enough to give an an accurate display of the correct voltage/charge/amperage/percentage of charge left.  If it's broke....fix it plz.
2016-1-26
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Sir Shepherd
Second Officer

United States
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PaulKerry Posted at 2016-1-26 15:27
Hey, Austin... I've only skim-read so forgive me for missing out on important info here...

It sound ...

@Paul - well written and you are right on! Even though I knew something was going to happen, I did panic a tad but remained in control.

For $200 a battery you would think it would do wonders but we all know we have an ongoing issue that needs to be addressed by DJI.

For me, I've always been one to investigate and educate myself. I had to do the testing myself to experience what others have sadly experienced!
2016-1-26
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Neary Aerial
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United States
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We cover all Phantoms and Inspires, as well as Blade, Walkera, Yuneec, and 3DR. https://neary-aerial.com
2016-1-27
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