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My Christmas gift flew away
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1866 78 2017-12-25
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Tom R
lvl.1
Flight distance : 2352 ft
United States
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Christmas morning, took my drone out front to show my wife, about 50 feet away at an elevation of 10 feet in beginners mode.  I pressed "Return Home" on my cell phone display.  The drone rose 100+ feet, and then flew away from me into a sixty+ foot tall tree.

2017-12-25
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WD9EON
First Officer
Flight distance : 622844 ft
United States
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sounds like you didn't have home point set before take off.
2017-12-25
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ALABAMA
Captain
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I bet she wasn't impressed lol.     Did it mess it up bad?
2017-12-25
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WD9EON
First Officer
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ALABAMA Posted at 2017-12-25 12:47
I bet she wasn't impressed lol.     Did it mess it up bad?

Were you able to retrieve it?
2017-12-25
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Kneepuck
Captain
Flight distance : 275102 ft
United States
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The return to home (RTH) feature is probably one of the most common causes of new pilot crashes.  Actually, lack of understanding the RTH is the cause.  While the Phantom aircraft are pretty forgiving and the AI is very helpful, it is still up to the pilot to know and understand how all the flight control systems work, and what their limitations are.  I suggest reading the flight manual and watch a few tutorials.  I hope you Phantom is not too badly damaged.
2017-12-25
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Tom R
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Kneepuck Posted at 2017-12-25 12:54
The return to home (RTH) feature is probably one of the most common causes of new pilot crashes.  Actually, lack of understanding the RTH is the cause.  While the Phantom aircraft are pretty forgiving and the AI is very helpful, it is still up to the pilot to know and understand how all the flight control systems work, and what their limitations are.  I suggest reading the flight manual and watch a few tutorials.  I hope you Phantom is not too badly damaged.

Christmas is ruined.  Drone flew away and have not been able to recover it.  

I literally ruined my wife's gift to me as she was watching me.

I should have asked for a watch instead.   

The attached documentation is horrible.  The App is horrible and not intuitive.  
2017-12-25
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ALABAMA
Captain
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It can be fixed, don't feel bad!  Can you see it up in the tree?
2017-12-25
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AlanHd
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United Kingdom
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Tom R Posted at 2017-12-25 13:14
Christmas is ruined.  Drone flew away and have not been able to recover it.  

I literally ruined my wife's gift to me as she was watching me.

I can appreciate your frustration and I agree to a degree the documentation could be better.
Can you upload your flight log, this should confirm what happened, instructions are here http://www.phantomhelp.com/logviewer/upload/
2017-12-25
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ALABAMA
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Tom, believe me when I say that every person you see on the forum has been in your exact situation.  At least you got yours over early. Now, lets figure a way to get it outta the tree and repaired,  What kind of tree is it, and how high?
2017-12-25
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Kneepuck
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Tom R Posted at 2017-12-25 13:14
Christmas is ruined.  Drone flew away and have not been able to recover it.  

I literally ruined my wife's gift to me as she was watching me.

The app recorded a flight log on your device.  This log can be used to find out the location of the aircraft.  There is a good chance it just stopped somewhere, hovered in place until the battery got low, then landed.  It may have landed in water or a tree, but it landed.  The first thing to do is upload the flight logs.  This is assuming you want the aircraft back.  I bet your wife would be much more impressed if you recovered  it and then did a successful flight.  Because Phantoms are pretty rugged, the aircraft is probably only mildly damaged, if at all.  But it is out there, you just need to determine where.  Good luck.
2017-12-25
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Tom R
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My wife just chewed my tail for ruining Christmas.   Thanks a lot for ruining Christmas.  

Yes, it is about a tree two hundred meters away, on someone else's property about 60 feet up in the air.  

This miserable experience is not something I expect from an industry leader.  Never happens with Apple, Samsung, or BMW.  

2017-12-25
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Geebax
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Tom R Posted at 2017-12-25 14:49
My wife just chewed my tail for ruining Christmas.   Thanks a lot for ruining Christmas.  

Yes, it is about a tree two hundred meters away, on someone else's property about 60 feet up in the air.  

'Never happens with Apple, Samsung, or BMW. '

It very well might if any of those could fly.
2017-12-25
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Labroides
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WD9EON Posted at 2017-12-25 12:46
sounds like you didn't have home point set before take off.

No it doesn't ... and even if he did, it would have recorded a home point soon after and quite close to the launch point.
By default the Phantom will climb to 30 metres when RTH is initiated.
That's normal RTH behaviour.
2017-12-25
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Labroides
Captain
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Australia
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Tom R Posted at 2017-12-25 14:49
My wife just chewed my tail for ruining Christmas.   Thanks a lot for ruining Christmas.  

Yes, it is about a tree two hundred meters away, on someone else's property about 60 feet up in the air.  

This miserable experience is not something I expect from an industry leader.  Never happens with Apple, Samsung, or BMW.
Apple, Samsung and BMW don't make drones that fly.
But if you had a new BMW as a gift, you would have to understand how to drive it or you could easily crash and damage that.
The same goes for a drone.  There's a lot to learn and you shouldn't expect it to just work like magic if you just push buttons, not knowing how it works.
DJI drones are capable of working almost like magic ... if you understand them and know what you are doing.

The app has a flight data recorder function.
If you want to see the actual data showing what happened and whether there is any evidence of malfunction, go to http://www.phantomhelp.com/LogViewer/Upload/
Follow the instructions there to upload your flight record from your phone or tablet.
Come back and post a link to the report it provides and someone should be anle to help analyse it.
2017-12-25
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Geebax
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Labroides Posted at 2017-12-25 15:01
No it doesn't ... and even if he did, it would have recorded a home point soon after and quite close to the launch point.
By default the Phantom will climb to 30 metres when RTH is initiated.
That's normal RTH behaviour.

Read the first post, the heights do not match up. 'rose 100+ feet' and 'flew into 60+ foot tree'.
2017-12-25
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Labroides
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Geebax Posted at 2017-12-25 15:04
Read the first post, the heights do not match up. 'rose 100+ feet' and 'flew into 60+ foot tree'.

Yes, I initially wondered but it is possible if the tree was growing on higher ground?
2017-12-25
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Delta Nine
Second Officer
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Did you take the wrapping paper off first ?
2017-12-25
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ALABAMA
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Tom R Posted at 2017-12-25 14:49
My wife just chewed my tail for ruining Christmas.   Thanks a lot for ruining Christmas.  

Yes, it is about a tree two hundred meters away, on someone else's property about 60 feet up in the air.  

Just tell the wifey to chill.  Are the lights still blinking?  If so, get under the tree with the remote and maybe you can work it out before the battery dies.
2017-12-25
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fansdc83af36
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Your wife should have a little understanding too and not be upset. You didn't do it on purpose. Your most likely just as sad as she is. Worst case scenario you lost $400 IF u can't get it down or the wind doesn't blow it down in a few days. Haven't you blown $100 bucks on a dinner that's lasted an hour before. People spend money on stuff all the time, it shouldnt ruin Christmas.  Besides Christmas really isn't about gifts.  
2017-12-25
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Tom R
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It did climb to ~99 feet once I hit return to home... then lost range.
2017-12-25
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KedDK
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A Bow, Arrow and a string has been recommended in here for situations like this.

Have the wife print out the real manual while you fight to get the drone safe down, good luck.
2017-12-25
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fansdc83af36
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Find a tree man or a fire fighter that may do tree service on the side that can climb the tree and give him $50-$100.
2017-12-25
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Genghis9
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Tom, I can completely understand...I myself accidently flew my P4P in to a tree on day 4 of my gift from my wife while she was watching...while I haven't heard the end of it, that experience is behind me now and I've had some fun filled flights since.

A lot of very smart and knowledgeable people have already commented, you REALLY need to follow their advice, suggestions, and recommendations as best you can as nearly all of them have been where you are now.
Lastly, you need to realize you really didn't get a toy, you got a very sophisticated flying machine that has tremendous capability and technology.  All this means is that you need to take some important time to lean all you can about it and what all it is capable of, and most importantly what all the features will do and not do.
2017-12-25
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Kneepuck
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Hey, if you dont want it, tell me where it is.  I don't mind climbing a tree to get a free Phantom.
2017-12-25
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fansb1fe1104
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about 50 feet away at an elevation of 10 feet in beginners mode.... doesn't the Phantom just auto-land if it is within a 60 ft radius?
2017-12-25
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Zippo43
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Kneepuck Posted at 2017-12-25 19:41
Hey, if you dont want it, tell me where it is.  I don't mind climbing a tree to get a free Phantom.

Kneepuck.....i have a 40 foot ladder i can  bring......and a 20 foot extendable aluminum pole !  Gee can i at least have the new battery for  the drive to help you.  (honest i sure dont beleive ever thing i read here )
2017-12-25
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RedHotPoker
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KedDK Posted at 2017-12-25 18:29
A Bow, Arrow and a string has been recommended in here for situations like this.

Have the wife print out the real manual while you fight to get the drone safe down, good luck.

I'm one of the soul archers on this forum. It was my suggestion to use stick and string.
The idea is to shoot an arrow through the branches, with a fishing line attached. Just like bow fishing.
But you will have a rope or strong cord tied to the lighter line. Once you have the rope over the branches you should be able to pull and shake the drone loose. Have a couple of people i with a blanket and do a firemans catch.


RedHotPoker
2017-12-25
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MrPinaColada
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Yeah I would still attempt to retrieve the drone. I'm going to point to a compass issue in the compass not being calibrated before flight. IF this was the case DJI will not cover damages under warranty. As suggested earlier, check the flight logs, those will tell you what happened.
2017-12-25
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Bashy
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Sounds like like the tree part happened due to lost connection and auto landing taking part (like i did not long back) having had that set in the app and not RTH

Do you have any friends with a decent drone, could possible hook it out of the tree for you depending on the position its in, its it possible to climb and reach it?
Do you have contents insurance that covers items way from the home? i do be they, like DJI want the drone back no matter how many pieces its in :/
2017-12-25
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Labroides
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MrPinaColada Posted at 2017-12-25 21:45
Yeah I would still attempt to retrieve the drone. I'm going to point to a compass issue in the compass not being calibrated before flight. IF this was the case DJI will not cover damages under warranty. As suggested earlier, check the flight logs, those will tell you what happened.

I'm going to point to a compass issue in the compass not being calibrated before flight.
There is nothing in the description to suggest any compass issue at all.
A poorly calibrated compass might make a drone slowly spiral or ly big curves rather than straight lines but not fly up and away.
Calibrating before your first (or any) flight is not necessary.
You would expect DJI to to mention this in the manual if it was necessary (and they don't).
IF this was the case DJI will not cover damages under warranty.  
This is certainly not true, since there is no need to calibrate the compass.
2017-12-25
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Geebax
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Labroides Posted at 2017-12-25 15:08
Yes, I initially wondered but it is possible if the tree was growing on higher ground?

Ah yes, of course.
2017-12-25
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Mark The Droner
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I think there is a solid clue in that it was flown on Christmas Day.  I'm not sure it's possible to read and absorb the manual and then fly on the same day.  
2017-12-26
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KedDK
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RedHotPoker Posted at 2017-12-25 21:00
I'm one of the soul archers on this forum. It was my suggestion to use stick and string.
The idea is to shoot an arrow through the branches, with a fishing line attached. Just like bow fishing.
But you will have a rope or strong cord tied to the lighter line. Once you have the rope over the branches you should be able to pull and shake the drone loose. Have a couple of people i with a blanket and do a firemans catch.

I think it is one of the best ways to try getting it down.

Recently i had a task getting a toy drone down from where no ladder available could reach, a few apples did the trick.

droneintree_1.JPG
droneintree_2.JPG

2017-12-26
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M.C. Pilot
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Kneepuck Posted at 2017-12-25 12:54
The return to home (RTH) feature is probably one of the most common causes of new pilot crashes.  Actually, lack of understanding the RTH is the cause.  While the Phantom aircraft are pretty forgiving and the AI is very helpful, it is still up to the pilot to know and understand how all the flight control systems work, and what their limitations are.  I suggest reading the flight manual and watch a few tutorials.  I hope you Phantom is not too badly damaged.

Totally agree. Folks, especially new pilots should not completely depend on RTH but know the sticks and directional/radar window.
2017-12-26
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CoreyB10
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Tom R Posted at 2017-12-25 14:49
My wife just chewed my tail for ruining Christmas.   Thanks a lot for ruining Christmas.  

Yes, it is about a tree two hundred meters away, on someone else's property about 60 feet up in the air.  

Apple - Bricks devices with duff updates. Samsung - Gets devices to blow up with crappy batteries. BMW - Recalls vehicles world wide for possible faulty components.

Sorry for your loss, I really am. Getting your you know what's chewed by the wife is no joy, especially at Christmas. In relation to answer number 9, not everyone on this forum has been in this situation. I'm sure that if you speak nice to the owner of the tree, they will let you get your drone back. Hopefully there is no damage apart from a damaged prop and you get to the bottom of it doing it's own thing.
Keep in there with it though as they are a ton of fun. Download the full manual from DJI's website and digest it before you fly again. I often wonder why they just include a quick-start guide.
2017-12-26
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stuka75
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DJI really needs to add a sticker/reminder to the box to download the real manual and read prior to flying. That said there is a lot inn info in it, and it takes time to digest. Below is a link to our experience retrieving a P4($1500) stuck forty yard up in a tree in the woods and swamps of Wisconsin. In this one he forgot to turn on obstacle avoidance!
https://forum.dji.com/thread-122350-1-1.html
Sorry to here about your travail. Good luck getting your drone back. There should be some local resource available to get it down.
2017-12-26
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BMelody
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Get your drone back using whatever process necessary/available, I'm sure it will fly again. Before the next flight watch all the you-tube videos you can find. There are 100's of them. Look for, "things to do before your first flight". Also things not to do with your new drone. Take a deep breath, move on, its not a perfect world, and you are not the first person to crash a drone.
2017-12-26
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Zippo43
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BMelody Posted at 2017-12-26 07:44
Get your drone back using whatever process necessary/available, I'm sure it will fly again. Before the next flight watch all the you-tube videos you can find. There are 100's of them. Look for, "things to do before your first flight". Also things not to do with your new drone. Take a deep breath, move on, its not a perfect world, and you are not the first person to crash a drone.

And.....If you can toss something Up at  and knock  it loose....have a few neighbor hood kids be ready to catch it to lessen further damage to it.........Good Luck  !    kinda sounds like the "RTH"  home point was still in China !
2017-12-26
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Genghis9
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2017-12-26 05:17
I think there is a solid clue in that it was flown on Christmas Day.  I'm not sure it's possible to read and absorb the manual and then fly on the same day.

Ya Think
2017-12-26
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Genghis9
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M.C. Pilot Posted at 2017-12-26 06:11
Totally agree. Folks, especially new pilots should not completely depend on RTH but know the sticks and directional/radar window.

I would go/add one further after becoming initially familiar with the drone and reading the manual at least twice plus watching tutorials I suggest you find an open clear area and test the RTH feature and all its features...of course make darn sure the RTH is set first.
2017-12-26
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