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Shell cracks - please vote!
35064 411 2015-7-8
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guy.keren
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2015-7-8
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classicalle
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Mine is clean, plus I unscrewed all of the screws and re screwed them by hand. Finger tight.
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mtnmaddman
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classicalle@gma Posted at 2015-7-9 04:24
Mine is clean, plus I unscrewed all of the screws and re screwed them by hand. Finger tight.

How many flights? mine started at about 70 flights,  hand caught every time,
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gregg1r
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My shell is also clean. 28 flights, just over 6 hours. I have a set of removable prop guards installed, so the area where the motor attaches to is thicker than normal Phantom shell.

I don't use much motor braking which is in-part the culprit to the cracking around the motor mounting screws. I ran a metric tap into the motor housing to clean the threads and when I installed the screws used 6.5 inch pounds of torque.
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classicalle
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mtnmaddman Posted at 2015-7-9 05:51
How many flights? mine started at about 70 flights,  hand caught every time,

85 flights, I'm about to check again for any cracking. This is bad!!
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Tahoe_Ed
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DJI has stated if you are having this issue that they will replace the shell, but it will have to be sent in for service.
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InspirelessAggi
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Tahoe_Ed Posted at 2015-7-9 07:14
DJI has stated if you are having this issue that they will replace the shell, but it will have to be ...

DJI should make the shell available so we can change it ourselves.  Those who wish to do so.  Their "solution"  robs us from having our drones for two months.   Are they going to extend our warranties by this waiting period?  We deserve that because of non- use

Make the shells available.  Some of us can replace our own shells.   We don't need you to do that.  If it comes down to an issue of whether we caused the problem or its manufacturer error,  since we can't be trusted .........make them purchasable at a discount

Waiting 2 months for a poorly designed drone defect is bad customer service.  Doesn't it make sense to cut down on returns to do this?    An RMA and a shipping label was issued to me.  I didn't ship it but shipping to and from......doesn't this cost you?   Labor to install the shells?    You guys are over your head in repairs.  Do the math and do what's right and stop screwing with your customers


Here's what you do.  Have us start a ticket with the zendesk and upload photos.   The location of the defect is consistently in the same spots on most all the photos and videos I've seen.  Approve the photos and the ticket number can be accessed by DJI.   Allow us a link to purchase the shells at a discount and send them out.  This isn't hard....but DJI is making it a real pain to get timely service.    I'm not sending in my drone for two months.   And if you don't provide an alternative solution, I won't be buying any more DJI products.    I work hard for my money and I'm not throwing it away again on cheap plastic.   Drones are not a necessity

DJI has a U.S. District Manager.  He needs to be made aware of these cracks and he needs to come up with a better solution than a two month wait

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pidetectives
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Can we purchase replacement Shells?
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Rigworker
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Tahoe_Ed Posted at 2015-7-9 07:14
DJI has stated if you are having this issue that they will replace the shell, but it will have to be ...

Will they have to be sent to the USA repair site or can Canadians send them to Flying Camera (Canada)        Unit 3 7870 Enterprise Dr Chilliwack BC? No issues yet but sure would be handy if we could get them repaired in country.
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Tahoe_Ed
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pidetectives@ya Posted at 2015-7-9 07:30
Can we purchase replacement Shells?

Right now the shells are not available but I am sure that they will be soon.  Some dealers are listing the part but showing out of stock.
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Tahoe_Ed
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Rigworker Posted at 2015-7-9 07:49
Will they have to be sent to the USA repair site or can Canadians send them to Flying Camera (Cana ...

Right now I do not know.  If it is a warranty repair then it would have to come to the US.  
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Rigworker
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Tahoe_Ed Posted at 2015-7-9 08:47
Right now I do not know.  If it is a warranty repair then it would have to come to the US.

That sucks badly. Takes a bird out of comission for a long time and headaches sending to the US. Hopefully this will change and there will be a Canadian warranty supplier. Please keep us informed.  If the shells are available, one may have ro bite the bullet and just buy them and forget about warranty. Then again, if they are the same shells, it doesnt really fix the issue.

Thanks for your reply.
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Rigworker
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classicalle@gma Posted at 2015-7-9 04:24
Mine is clean, plus I unscrewed all of the screws and re screwed them by hand. Finger tight.

I did the same before It was flown for the first time.
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classicalle
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Rigworker Posted at 2015-7-9 09:22
I did the same before It was flown for the first time.

Hopefully this will be enough for it to never crack.
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druiz100
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Hi,  This is my first DJI product, like alot of people we saw the ads and heard about the drone the crashed into the White House.(Believe it or not i think that helped sales of the P3).   I have flown RC planes in the past so I am not totally new to flying.   But alot of the new people follow your steps to make sure the P3 flies ok.  Not one of these steps says to look hard at these area that may crack.   At first I thought my P3P was clean with no cracks.  But you need to flex the arm gently to see the crack as it hides very good.   As I only had a few flights with my P3P, there is no doubt that the P3P came this way from the factory.    What most companies will do when they can not repair it in a timely matter, they tell the person to return the product where they bought it for a new one.   

I maybe wrong but didnt DJI first sayat first the shell wasn't covered under the warranty, And now there saying to send it in for repair.   So some one from DJI, what is the point of sending the P3 back to put the same shell on that may crack again.   Do you guys plan of making that area stronger with metal or something?

One last thing,  Why are you treating people with this cracking like its there fault.  Just wondering.

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InspirelessAggi
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Its a good question.   The phantom 3 was my first DJI product.    And may  be my last.    I feel like the technology gives them latitude to make us wait for unacceptable repair times.  Because,the competition hasn't caught up yet.  

I could care less about the logistics of the repair process, staff, or resources.   I'm the customer and it's not my problem.   We've been told that a new facility and a move is in the works.  Not my problem.  The issue is not accepting what I tell you and send you pictures of as evidence there's a problem. Instead, if I want service, have to send it off to a warehouse to sit to be checked in after a few weeks and then another 5-6 weeks to repair and ship it back.   I'm not happy.  What would it take to make me happy?  well I've already said offer shells, but here's a "foreign" concept.  Let me send it back to where I purchased it and be given a new one with no defect.  If you are concerned over user error, let the dealer decide.

Are you not concerned over having happy customers?   If it is only 20%...  According to the poll, or 11 people at the time I write this.  What's it going to cost you to make it right?  Some cheap plastic.   What is is going to cost you when I'm ready to buy something new?



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dennisrogers.ih
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reducing your breaking is not the best idea. When your coming down the breaking is also used making the p3 much more stable on decent. reducing breaking prevents this
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gregg1r
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dennisrogers.ih Posted at 2015-7-9 15:14
reducing your breaking is not the best idea. When your coming down the breaking is also used making  ...

Learning how to fly without making abrupt moves will reduce the amount of braking that the Phantom has to perform. Rapid acceleration decceleratios torque the motors to the max. That torque load has to go somewhere.

Fast stick movements, from the center point to either direction then stopping rapidly uses motor braking hard.

The Phantom is a flying camera not a stunt quad.
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mtnmaddman
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gregg1r Posted at 2015-7-9 19:44
Learning how to fly without making abrupt moves will reduce the amount of braking that the Phantom ...

come on gregg what about wind gusts,  Also if you take your car over the speed limit, or hit the brakes, does it crack?
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gregg1r
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mtnmaddman Posted at 2015-7-9 19:49
come on gregg what about wind gusts,  Also if you take your car over the speed limit, or hit the b ...

I can categorically state, that I never threw a drive shaft out of one of my daily driver cars or trucks. I have however thrown the drive shaft and broken axles on my drag car.

The Phantom 3 is a flying camera not a stunt quad. If DJI is forced to replace the 250,000 units all ready sold, you can kiss them good bye.

Making slow sweeping movements reduces the stress and strain on the thin plastic shell. I'm not saying that the design used was good, as evidenced by the cracking, but I doubt that any drone manufacturer uses finite element analysis or know what the design allowables are for the quad shell.

We live in a world where people believe that those designing products have access to the latest and greatest design tools.  Unfortunately for a lot of consumer goods, it's a SWAG, (scientific wild ass guess). I'm sure that DJI uses a fluid dynamics program for the aerostructure.

Wind gusts causing damage to the Phantom would be one of the last concerns I'd have.
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mtnmaddman
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You can turn down the braking action, I think,  in the pilot app. If you can, I would strongly suggest that you do until this cracking situation is addressed, possibly the more confident,  long time pilots have pushed on there P3  It should be able to operate within the design envelope without damage,  The pole is running 25% have damage, that really is quite high considering the numbers sold, also others that have no cracks may be relative to several other factors, Some have only had theirs a short time, flight time, aggressiveness and length of flights, plastic composition variances or changes,  replacement of the shell ?  will that solve the problem? have they acknowledged this and made changes to plastic or to the molds, again send it in and replace the shell, again send it in and replace the shell, again send it in and replace the shell, how a bought a real explanation followed by a real answer. Now wouldn't that be refreshing.   
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InspirelessAggi
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Hey DJI.....

If you need proof of this coming from the factory and being A MANUFACTURING DEFECT,  have a look at this video.  This guy received a new unit with a hole near his mount.   DJI sent him a BRAND NEW UNIT and he did a side to side comparison.   The second unit....HAD THE CRACK.     Just like mine came from the factory with.   These cracks get worse!

First off, you sent him a new unit.  I can see that he had not flown his first unit, but what difference does it make if these are coming from the factory this way?  Why can't you send us out new units instead of having to send them in?   Quite a few of us now have had this sort of problem.  





This has to be a nightmare for this guy.  He hasn't even flown one of them yet.

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Fulgerite
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mtnmaddman Posted at 2015-7-9 19:49
come on gregg what about wind gusts,  Also if you take your car over the speed limit, or hit the b ...

Mtnmaddman...

I have some experience with designing plastic parts that interface with screws.  My own engineering experience tells me...
I don't think the cracks happen because of sudden braking or flying style.  It is a manufacturing defect.

If the screws are over tightened the plastic will develop stress cracks over time.  If the screwdriver torque settings were too high at the factory at the time your Phantom was assembled it will develop stress cracks.

I don't think it has anything to do with your flying style.  These plastics are quite tough and resiliant to sudden temporary shock loads.  But if you put these plastics under load for a long period of time they slowly develop tears or stress cracks.  Over tightened screws can apply hundreds of pounds of force on the plastic which leads to cracking over time.
For the motor mounting screws...  I decided to remove my motor mount screws and use a drop of nail polish and replace the screws making sure they are not too tight.  The nail polish will prevent the screws from lostening over time.  The other self taping screws can be losened very slightly without risking them falling out.  I did these proceedures at my own risk.  I am not suggesting anyone else try what I did...  


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guy.keren
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I just inspected mine very carefully, and found what looks like a potential crack developed in one of the holes.I have only about 20 flight, no crashes.



I wonder if it came from the manufacture like that or it it developed over time..

crack

crack
Crack_DJI_Phantom3.jpg
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greenbean
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My 1st P3P, I noticed cracks after I read about the problem here in this forum…it only had about 6 hours. I bought 2nd P3P for any event whereas the first would have to be sent out I wouldn't be without…checked the day it arrived under bright light and magnifying glass, and sure enough, there they were, in 2 places. I would also like to mention that quality of the shells between the 1st and 2nd was less than acceptable….the 2nd doesn't even snap together properly nor are the seams flush, add that to having cracks when it arrived….disgusted, period. I did however receive my second from Shenzhan, China in 3.5 business days, 5 days from the date ordered....but so what. DJI will be getting them both back.
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guy.keren
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After finding one crack on mine, I almost certain that the root cause is manufacturing and not stress on the arms from flying.
The shell plastic looks cheap with weak points arounds the motor. I don’t understand why they didn’t invest more on the shell especially at the weak points.  This is the 3rd generation, didn’t they see the problem in the first and second generation??

I wish I have known this issue before I bought this bird..
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mtnmaddman
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greenbean Posted at 2015-7-10 01:36
My 1st P3P, I noticed cracks after I read about the problem here in this forum…it only had about 6  ...

Wow greenbean that is really sick,  I hate this I do not want to see dji go down,  I really liked my p2v+,  It had cracking around the the motor mount, that I originally blamed on a couple of tip overs after landing.

I repaired, no problems since. I hand caught it from then on, as I did every time with my p3.   The cracks was the final straw for me, I sent my P3 back and bought an Inspire, It hasn't arrived yet.

I do not like the fact that the development of the p3 and the resulting pilot apps have had a detrimental effect  on the Inspire.  Good God what would be wrong with having different apps.

Dji has it all on the line this time,  They act like they don't care,  I certainly hope they can resolve,  I  cant tell you how much I have enjoyed their products.  I sincerely hope they can survive this.
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greenbean
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mtnmaddman Posted at 2015-7-10 02:45
Wow greenbean that is really sick,  I hate this I do not want to see dji go down,  I really liked  ...

I'm not returning them. I am sending back to be repaired. Then sell. Since I have invested in KillerRC gimbal guards, DroningOn lens/gimbal locks, 6 batteries etc…hopefully they will go quick and perhaps then an I1…..or something more constructive like a new roof on my garage  haha
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REBELimgs
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I just opened the box to my new P3P a few hours ago and I have yet to fly it. The battery still isn't even charged. I decided to inspect it after running across this thread and found this. It doesn't look like it's cracked but it does look like a weak point. I have yet to fly this thing and I already feel uneasy.
2015-07-09 15.44.37.jpg
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guy.keren@gmail Posted at 2015-7-10 01:22
I just inspected mine very carefully, and found what looks like a potential crack developed in one  ...

I just noticed mine looks pretty much like yours and I havent flown it yet. It's definitely a manufacturing defect.
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guy.keren
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REBELimgs Posted at 2015-7-10 03:52
I just opened the box to my new P3P a few hours ago and I have yet to fly it. The battery still isn' ...

Where is it? can you send a bigger image?
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guy.keren@gmail Posted at 2015-7-10 04:45
Where is it? can you send a bigger image?

this is the same picture just less cropped
2015-07-09 15.44.37.jpg

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guy.keren
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REBELimgs Posted at 2015-7-10 04:58
this is the same picture just less cropped

I see.....

This is what I just found:


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mtnmaddman
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gregg1r Posted at 2015-7-9 05:55
My shell is also clean. 28 flights, just over 6 hours. I have a set of removable prop guards install ...

Gregg
the problem is not around the motor mount screws,  I would think that the guards would add even more stress on the screw liner ferrells that support the attachment of the lower shell to the upper.  How do the prop guards support that area where these cracks are manifesting?  

You do not have enough flights on your machine,  Mine looked fine until flight 70 or so I don't know for sure , but I was inspecting before and after every flight Over the course of one flight the cracks appeared. You do not have enough flights yet to tell, as I imagine that this is the case with most of those that have voted clean in this pole, unfortunately they are not going to be able to go back and change their vote.  As I assume you wont be able to either.  
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gregg1r
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mtnmaddman Posted at 2015-7-10 05:16
Gregg
the problem is not around the motor mount screws,  I would think that the guards would add  ...

Have you seen the mounting plates used by the removable prop guards? If not, the plates are around .100" thick and have locating bosses that go into the motor mount holes. Once the plates are mounted, the Phantom shell no longer carries the motor load thru the shell mounting holes.

I've been off looking at some plastics to be able to form to the Phantom arm shape. Once I've got good fitup, I use some aluminum stand-offs to better hold position.

What I don't know however is how much of a gap is there between the stand-offs between upper and lower shells. The three other shell attachment holes that have shown cracking would require longer screws to pass thru the additional thickness.

Anyone have a crashed Phantom 3 that they want to send me for measurements of the gaps and possible repair patches.
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Tahoe_Ed
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I just turned my P3P upside down.  I fly this thing all the time and I am not gentle with it.  I have the braking set at factory defaults and it is tame compared to my Inspire.  I have no cracks at all.  I have to smile when I see users that have never flown their P3's and say they have cracks.  I looked at their photographs and enlarge them.  I will be honest, I don't see any cracks.  I have seen some casting imperfections.  DJI has stated that they will replace the shells if there are cracks in them.  I am not denying that there have been some units with cracks around the screws.  We don't know the exact cause and are still investigating.  Understand, I can point to many more users that have stated no cracks vs those that are having the issue.  I know of no other craft that users take out magnifying glasses to examine them.  
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ScottyT
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Tahoe_Ed Posted at 2015-7-10 07:24
I just turned my P3P upside down.  I fly this thing all the time and I am not gentle with it.  I hav ...

Come on, Tahoe. By your reckoning an issue isn't an issue unless the majority of people are experiencing it?

This is not an isolated few cases and the majority of those won't require magnifying glasses to see, unless you have eyesight problems. One merely needs to gently flex the arms to see the cracks more clearly. And in any case a crack is a crack, a small crack will become a bigger crack. I imagine most won't even know they have them yet - time will tell.

It's not very difficult to determine what the issue is here, IMHO
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Tahoe_Ed
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ScottyT Posted at 2015-7-10 08:04
Come on, Tahoe. By your reckoning an issue isn't an issue unless the majority of people are experie ...

I did not say that.  An issue is an issue if it effects you personally.  I disagree this is more than isolated cases.  When you look at the number reported vs the number in the hands of the public, it is a small percentage.  Which of the possibilities is the cause, bad casting run, incorrectly calibrated torque drives on the assembly line, poor design, damage in transit, etc,etc?  There are many potential areas that are being explored by engineers more qualified than me.  We are taking this seriously and looking for a perminent solution.  We have a current solution, send the unit in and we will repair or replace it.  I am sorry that many do not like that solution but that is what we have right now.
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mtnmaddman
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gregg1r Posted at 2015-7-10 06:11
Have you seen the mounting plates used by the removable prop guards? If not, the plates are around ...

gregg
Read back  on some of my posts on the other cracking threads, that is exactly the 2 fixes I described several days ago,  one external by sleeveing the ferrell holes and  lengthening the bolts.  

The other fix, a metal plate internally under the motors with support arms extending to the 3 shell half mounting bolts sandwiched between the shell halves, two different fixes, on superficially applied, the other factory or aftermarket development,  This is a simple fix, I have dealt with structural engineering, and re-engineering situations that are  100 times harder and more complicated than this.


I could provide an autocad drawing and design for a plug and play, plate type fairing that would attach to the bottom of the arms, relining all seven of the bolt tubes and using lengthened bolts, changing the whole dynamics of the way the torquing and twisting forces, are applied to the shell, The bottom part of the shell would be then be clamped to the top shell instead of hanging off of it by the thin countersinking tubes ,  Motor torques are being absorbed and  distributed to the top shell via the thin tubes , Integrity of the radial ,parabolic torsion box that the arms form must be maintained. This is actually so simple that I cant believe all of this carrying on.

The external fix would add less than a couple of grams to each arm, could be applied by practically anyone, no new shell no send in. this could be a beautiful little cowl under each arm, it would be a little donut shape about the dia of the end of the arm just thick enough to hide the screw heads in the center of that a little half dome shape around the dia of the motor mount bolt pattern again just thick enough  to stick a little below the outer ring and to hide the bolt holes. You could emboss dji phantom 3 around the outer ring, it would look as though it were there from the factory..  Anyone have a 3d printer and interested contact me.
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mtnmaddman
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Tahoe_Ed Posted at 2015-7-10 07:24
I just turned my P3P upside down.  I fly this thing all the time and I am not gentle with it.  I hav ...

I have to smile when I see users that have never flown their P3's and say they have cracks

This not funny at all Ed,  I have to smile every time I see you guys belittling another of DJIs customers,  If 250,000 have been sold and 25% according to the pole has cracks already, I believe that to be a rather large number,  I am amazed that yours, greggs, drone flyers,  and sploodges, p3's are perfect and that you guys have not witnessed one problem that the hundreds of threads and thousands of posts are talking about. We are all just inexperienced idiots, like you all say.
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