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The Forum Ruined Me & My DJI Inspire 1

Discussion in 'Inspire 1 Discussion' started by Mpellet, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. Mpellet

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    This Spring I met a guy who had a couple of DJI Inspire 1s and he shared some video taken both of the aircraft flying and from the aircraft. Being a sucker to new hobbies and technology, a few weeks later a rather large box from B&H Camera arrived and I had my own DJI Inspire 1.

    A little back ground on me, former Naval Aviator , 20+ year airline pilot and I own and fly a half dozen 3D capable RC helicopters and smaller quads. I am fairly comfortable and somewhat experienced with an RC controler in my hands. My initial reaction to flying the DJI Inspire 1 was "THIS IS AWESOME" and soon I was shooting both video and stills of a myriad of subjects and also launching and recovering the DJI Inspire 1 from my boat having a lot of FUN with the unit. I quickly logged 200+ flights and 15+ hours. Aside from some video signal interuption on my first DJI Inspire 1 performance has been perfect. When I called B&H and told them about the video signal not connecting on start up, they offered me a new unit and that D Model has thus far been perfect in all aspects. I must mention I was hesitant to return my original aircraft because it also flew PERFECTLY but the video conection issue was irritating so I accepted the return offer. YES I occasionaly fly in ATTI mode, which if you are an experienced collective pitch helicopter RC pilot or have flown smaller quads is still outrageously stable and easy to fly.

    I have used the propeller lock system on machine one and quick release on machine number two. While the propeller lock system seemed a bit more fool proof, I have had no issue with the quick release and they seem fine.

    Ok here is my problem, I can't help but occasionally read this forum and when I do I find myself drawn to the myriad of horror/ "what the fukc happened" stories and threads. Some of the first flight stories are obvious pilot error but the other " I never thought it would happen to me" tales written by folks who seem to have some experience leave me troubled. I used to look at my DJI Inspire 1 as a remarkably sophisticated aircraft that I had a lot of confidence in, now after reading all of this not so much.

    Flying entirely over open fields is BORING but the thought of having my machine pull one of these Crazy Ivan's and causing damage to people or property on the ground is totally unacceptable, subsequently I find myself flying my DJI Inspire 1 less and less and am actually contemplating selling it.

    Wondering if I am alone in these feelings or is anyone else who has had no flight issues with their machine loosing confidence in it simply from reading all the horror stories here??
     
  2. Scotflieger

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    You are probably not alone with the fears engendered by a 'few' isolated cases of things going wrong with the I1. As a pilot you will know that there is no such thing as an aircraft that does not have its quirks and unserviceabilities. You only normally hear about the few horror stories from a few vocal individuals. There are many more of us out there who have not experience any problems and are happy to fly their I1s with any concerns. I would be today if the wind was not beyond limits 8-10 m/s gusting 15 m/s.

    However, the I1 is a potentially lethal weapon and I would not (and am not permitted by UK CAA) to fly where there is a risk to persons or property. I have to stick to the 50m from people or property at all times (except where they are 'under my control') and never over crowds or populated areas. Commonsense really.

    Ignore the scaremongers and fly your I1. Enjoy it.
     
  3. The Editor

    The Editor Moderator
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    Hi,

    Thanks for your post.

    My advice would be - Ignore them and enjoy flying.

    Human nature being what it is, will attract 'problem' stories to forums such as this and individuals tend to shout very loudly when they perceive something has gone wrong that isn't their doing. (Well actually a lot shout loudly even when it IS their doing as it magically becomes DJI's fault because the manual (assuming they read it in he first place :rolleyes:) did not specifically tell them they should not try and fly the Inspire underwater or inside The Large Hadron Collider (while its switched on).
    Forums will always reflect the negative side of things, be it Inspires, Lexus, BWM or Ford forums - People go on there to complain and find answers to problems they may have encountered.
    Few times (although there are some) do you see Threads/Posts that say "Absolutely nothing wrong with my machine" because those individuals are not on here - they are out flying and loving the technology.

    I am CAA certified and use the Inspire daily for business as a work horse - It has served me well and never given reason to doubt it.
    I do however go through a comprehensive checklist before each flight and undertake a regular maintenance routine at set intervals - nothing fancy, just checking airframe integrity, fastenings for security, free play, motor binding, lubrication of landing gear servo and replacement of bearings at 100hrs or when needed. Every so often I will go over the aircraft thoroughly checking for stress cracks or signs of deterioration/wear.
    As part of my certification all my flights are logged as well as my battery usage and by doing this any anomalies in battery behavior or trend are highlighted rather than just "grab a battery and go fly".
    Post flight I have a checklist again including checking motor temperature, prop integrity etc.
    I have never had a problem thus far.

    Go fly and have (safe) fun :p
     
  4. The Editor

    The Editor Moderator
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    Or 30m when you are landing or taking off ;) (that one come in handy)
     
  5. William Fredette

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    I know what you mean, @Mpellet. I got my Inspire 1 about two weeks ago, and have been amazed at how stable and predictable it has been compared to all of the toy-level quadcopters I've had in the past. I even got up the nerve to fly it on the beach a couple of days after it arrived - in winds that would have made me leave any of my past quads in the box. It flew like a champ, and, when it hovered, the video looked like it was taken from a 200 foot tall tripod. But I've read so many horror stories (and seen the videos on YouTube), that I can feel myself fighting the fear each time I take it up.

    I spent several hours yesterday flying the simulator in ATTI mode with winds in the teens and twenties to try to build my confidence. And the thing will never get out of my sight in the air. As @Scotflieger noted, forums like this one tend to collect problem reports because the people who are having good results have no complaints. So far, I'm lucky to be in that camp. I'll keep reading here to try to pick up tips about maintenance and potential problems, but I'm also going to try to continue to build my confidence in the technology so that I can find the nerve to go after the shots that I want. Fingers crossed...
     
    #5 William Fredette, Aug 23, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2015
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  6. jasonthomson

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    Great piece of technology.Love flying it.

    Bought my Inspire one in pieces from eBay. Originally I was just going to part it out but once I saw it I had to try and rebuild it. Took 2 weeks and 1k in parts. The first time I flew it I was thinking of all the things that could go wrong that I have read on this and other forums. Flew great.
    Still don't think the motor boom arms are at the exact angle. Had to use pictures to assume what the angle is. Worm drive screw has a slight bend. When the Inspire 1 transforms it wobbles in the air a small amount but not enough to stress out the transform motor.

    I fly now mostly in ATTI mode to hopefully avoid GPS related problems.
     
  7. AmosMoses

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    Can it happen? sure. Will it happen? only time will tell. Even the best built and maintained machines in the world fail at some point.
    I personally over the years in the hobby have come to accept that not only can something go wrong at some point it will. Once I accepted that, I can just enjoy the days when everything goes perfect.

    I started in the rc aircraft hobby with fixed pitch ehelis and moved up to cp helis. The crashes were to numerous to count and I learned very quickly how to tear them apart, fix them and most importantly how to fly them. Not well mind you but, I was eventually able to run through the batteries and land even tough my hands were sweating and my nerves were shot!

    Now fast forward several years to the day I bought my first Phantom 2 vision. I had the same reaction as you did. MAN! This thing is a blast to fly!! No more sweaty hands and shot nerves. Then I start to read all the horror stories on the net too. One of the first things I noticed is the number of new fliers that had NO experience flying any other craft and how many never took the time to even read the manual. The marketing for theses things is VERY misleading to the end user. Sure, they are a breeze to fly BUT there is a lot of setup and processes that needs to be followed closely. I also wasn't afraid to open things up and look inside to see how they tick! Not suggesting anyone do that but it helps to understand what's going on in there. Not to mention maybe finding a potential problem since DJI's quality control can be spotty sometimes.

    I'm not saying that every horror story we read is solely user error, not by any means but, the vast majority are. I personally have logged hundreds of flights with my DJI quads. I've had some scary flights when I rushed to get in the air so I cloud get the shot quickly and others where I just forgot to do the basics. I've owned every Phantom series since the P2V (P2V+/P2+V+V3/P3A/P3P) and now moved up to the I1. I am one of the fortunate ones and only had one crash that fortunately was not of my doing. DJI stepped up and fixed the unit (P2V+V3) for me under warranty at no cost.
    I say just fly it, enjoy it, and have fun. If or when it happens count the successful flights and smile!
     
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  8. JohnHan

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    Along the way yes some of the stories cause "worry". But, by monitoring this forum I'm better equipped to address the risks that are in my control while taking steps to minimize risk to people and property from the possible scenarios outside of my control. Better for me if I know what is and isn't in my control.

    The people I worry about are those that buy it and fly it without any fear at all to those on the ground. Of course that is how these things are marketed.

    I agree with your assessment of the risk to people on the ground. Unacceptable. As fun as the I1 is, it's not worth a civil suit after cracking someone's skull open.
     
  9. Mazz

    Mazz Moderator
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    Lots of posts above, sorry, TL;DR. I'm sure they all say the same thing. Come here for help not to get opinions. Make those yourself.
     
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  10. BrianSelf

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    Its the same with me man..

    Sent from my VS986 using Tapatalk
     
  11. ZenOhSix

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    My Inspire 1 has been perfect. Your reaction is typical; people don't usually come to the forum and post their success. This is the same through 3D heli's, or {insert product focus name of forum here}. Rather, it is people who report failures, issues, or complaints.

    Truth is, something will go wrong as it is a mechanical device. You have 15+ hours on your Inspire 1, how many more until motor #2 fails in flight? Hopefully, during a CSC start check a fault would be caught. Typically a motor, like what is on the Inspire 1, will last 10k + Hours until the bearings wear out. Yet, overheating or other issues can cause that to occur in less than 1 hour of run time. Ultimately, it is a mechanical device and it WILL fail.

    To mitigate it, I think the best a pilot can do is keep proper logs, maintenance checks, and fly in appropriate conditions/scenarios. Fear can drive you to spend more money, if safety or damage (itself/others) is a large concern. You can invest into a chute system, which would be the best thing for an Inspire 1; a chute with an automatic deployment system. If you have something like this, AND take proper pre/during/post flight care - you should be good.

    My only advice would be - don't fly in fear or in ignorance. Know the dangers, mitigate them to the best you can, and have a good time enjoying the hobby/profession while you can.

    Mike
     
  12. AndrewH

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    Exactly the same for me, I've had my i1 for about 6 weeks and I'm just starting to build up my confidence and not worry about all the "horror" stories I read on here in the first few days of having it. I've had no issues with mine at all, everything I've learnt so far is from you guys here on the forum. My view is take the horror posts with a grain of salt, if there's something you can take from it, great. I'm here to learn as much as I can and to enjoy flying. :)
     
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  13. Avispa

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    yes, its true.

    this quad not "inspire" confidence..
    losting properlless.

    best Peter
     
  14. inspire909

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    I also read all of these horror stories and get so worried about flying my inspire although I must say it has been rock solid I have owned a phantom 1 a phantom 2 v+ and now my inspire 1 I have never encountered a problem with any of my dji quads but after reading some of the posts on here I can't help but keep it in the back of my mind "is this the time" I am very vigilant about my maintance and all my pre flight checks .....so you definitely are not alone ...I think we all worry a little bit from time to time after all we did spend 3000+ dollars on something that flys
     
  15. jmp470

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    Does reading AOPA's forum or Pilots of America stop you from wanting to fly? They post horribly stuff all the time there. Don't look for drama, enjoy your hobby
     
  16. Steven Powter

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    Over 150 hours up flying the Inspire now.... no problems here... except.. for the tilted horizon and the occasional drop out of the video signal .... (which i put down to not having the 32 channels any more) .. having said that i still love it.... it is by far the best UAV on the market.... and... it will get better.... most of the major problems are pilot error... it is a very small percentage that are not.... and i mean small.... don't worry... go and enjoy your Inspire...
     
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  17. PB30X

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    Lol! Got ya beat by 2-1/2hrs!! Same here with the cruked eye.. Just one IMU calibration boo boo.. Keep flying, if it ain't broke, don't fix it
     
  18. Bevan May

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    I am a private pilot and had until recently owned a twin engine plane. I recently got completely smitten by the videos and marketing of the Inspire 1 after owning much smaller quad copters over the last few years. The Inspire 1 for me was finally an example of a well put-together ready to fly machine and I ordered one from a local DJI rep. I read the manual and fired it up and started flying as soon as I got it home. Then I found this forum as I was trolling the web to find as much about the rig as I could to satisfy my tendency to dive deep into things I am interested in. I was also somewhat overwhelmed by the horror stories here but there was a very positive by-product of having read them--it quickly helped me to understand that this machine is not a toy and that the same discipline as I use when I do my pre-flight checks on my Piper Aztec are required when flying the Inspire 1. I am mindful of the fact this Forum attracts mostly negative information since that is the type of information that drives all forums. I am a more careful and thoughtful UAV pilot because of it. I now have 83 flights, 10 hours and over 600,000 feet of flying under my belt and look forward to much more. My only mishap so far is when I took off twice before waiting long enough for the GPS to stabilize with sufficient reception and thought I was going to lose the bird as it tore across the sky adjusting to strengthening satellite locks. now I wait a good 3-4 minutes after power up to have at least 15 satellite signals locked and stable before lifting off.
     
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  19. Aviator

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    Yes, the same happened to me (just once though) and ever since then I now wait until the bird has stabilized before take off..
    Nice post by the way!
     
  20. John

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    Adding my 2-cents... Took delivery of my 1st Inspire 1 in January 2015. Crashed 3 times between then and mid-August. 1st: Aircraft drifted into a tree within the 1st 30 seconds of the inaugural flight; Repair covered under warranty. 2nd: Two neighbors came up and started talking with me whilst flying. Became distracted and misjudged proximity of aircraft to roof edge. Now I wear vest warning people to keep away during flight operations & I am "rude" to people who ask me questions while I fly. 3rd: Brain fart in using the sticks while trying a swoop & pan motion over a river canyon resulting in a crash into a tree. These forums have been invaluable in strengthening my pre-flight and post-flight checklist that I follow with OCD-like discipline. Am building ATTI proficiency as IMU and battery performance variances along with canyon cliffs reducing GPS satellite strength have resulted in unexpected mid-flight behavior. I tell everyone that the Inspire1 is NOT A TOY! It's a serious piece of technology that requires practice and manned-aircraft-like discipline for checks and maintenance. Like one gets butterflies before a performance or speech, I get butterflies before I fly. But that keeps me on my toes. I recently took delivery of a 2nd Inspire 1 to serve as a back up in case the other one is in for 2-month-long repairs.