Helicam images of HR29

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Helicam images of HR29

Postby Antti_DD » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:57 pm

I finally got my Phantom2 quadcopter 1,5 week ago. I saw a demo flight with this RC-multicopter in the Helsinki Boat Show earlier this year and was pretty much 'sold' after that. Here are the first aerial photos shot a week ago. I also edited and uploaded a video to youtube about the first test day: http://youtu.be/xkhjdQA0dTc

Photos are taken with GoPro 3 camera stabilized with Zenmuse H3-3D gimbal

Helicam_Kuuskari.jpg
Helicam_Kuuskari.jpg (64.44 KiB) Viewed 1891 times

Helicam_Iso-Kuusinen.jpg
Helicam_Iso-Kuusinen.jpg (56.34 KiB) Viewed 1891 times

Helicam_airisto.jpg
Helicam_airisto.jpg (76.32 KiB) Viewed 1891 times

P2040751.jpg
One of the first flights with the drone
P2040751.jpg (65.47 KiB) Viewed 1891 times
Antti Laine, Forum Administrator
HR 29 # 483 "Dolphin Dance"
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Re: Helicam images of HR29

Postby Chris » Tue Jun 17, 2014 6:08 pm

Ooooh! I wondered how long it would be before you succumbed to the helicam temptation.
Fascinating seeing everything from such a lofty angle.. bit like a bird.
How easy is it to fly? did you just zone in and start flying it or did you have a few scary moments?
Look forward to seeing many more vids. Love the clip where you're stood on the pontoon and zooming in to land.
I know it's a bit rude to ask but a ballpark figure on what the kit cost would be interesting.

Cheers Antti

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Re: Helicam images of HR29

Postby Antti_DD » Tue Jun 17, 2014 11:14 pm

Thanks Chris, the first flight was indeed very exciting since I did not have any prior experience on flying RC aircrafts, but it turned out to be very simple to fly the quadcopter (with some reservations). The drone was very stable when airborne and felt very controlled during the flight. However, the conditions were pretty much ideal since there was no wind.

The first couple of flights felt almost too easy, since I got overly confident and decided to launch the drone from the fore deck later that day on another anchorage. First couple of flights went again very well, but on the third time the drone started wandering towards the mast and I almost flow the whole thing in the sea. After that I got more cautious since I did not know why the drone did that. I actually found out during the last weekend's test session, that the drone might sometimes have difficulty in establishing GPS signal. If the GPS is not found, the drone is less stable and it may start wandering which is a problem if maneuvering in close quarters. When the GPS is on, the drone keeps its position very accurately when one lets go of the controls.

All in all, the feelings about the drone are very positive, but I have also had some scary moments during the learning curve.

The whole kit including the Phantom2, GoPro Hero3, Zenmuse 3D gimbal and a spare battery cost about 1,500 €. So it is a rather expensive kit, but we bought the drone for a commercial video project, so we can deduct the VAT later and hopefully the toy will also bring some income in the future...
Antti Laine, Forum Administrator
HR 29 # 483 "Dolphin Dance"
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Re: Helicam images of HR29

Postby Chris » Wed Jun 18, 2014 5:36 am

Many years ago, I used to work on the advertising account for a national UK house builder and part of my remit was to photograph their new housing developments. It was when I was first flying RC helicopters but because of my inexperience and the inherent dangers of flying such a lethal machine in close quarters the idea of using the model as a camera platform never got off the ground! If only these incredible devices had been around then.

There is, I am sure, a huge potential for commercial use and I too have considered this.

My earlier research into costs for such a package came to around the same sort of figure so no surprises there.

I did wonder about its stability and how the GPS played a part. With such a small craft, how are you with orientation. One thing I found when I first began flying RC aircraft was whether they were flying towards you or away from you. I learnt the hard way and also that a visit to the optician improved things!

I understand that if you just let go of the controls it apparently flies itself back to you? Wow!

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Re: Helicam images of HR29

Postby Antti_DD » Wed Jun 18, 2014 6:17 pm

Yes, I have found that it is indeed a bit difficult flying the aircraft towards me, since the controls are then of course the other way round. I am wondering how long it takes to know it instinctively, which way to turn the controls in different situations. I am still frequently doing mistakes when the orientation in relation to the controller changes, but that isn't a problem as long as the aircraft is in open space. The situation is of course quite different when flying in close quarters. Last weekend I was practicing in a wooded island and had a good lesson on flying in tight places among the trees. I found out that it actually makes sense to reverse the drone back to the landing spot, when the controls work in the normal way. Furthermore, the quadcopter is symmetrical so it doesn't matter much to which way you are flying it.

In GPS mode, when you let go of the controls, the drone will hover in place and pretty accurately keeps its altitude and position. If the GPS fix is established before the lift out, the drone records the home base position. If the controller is switched off, the drone will fly back to the 'home base'. Also in the GPS mode, if flown beyond the control area, the drone will turn towards the place where it last had contact.
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