Quadcopter at the Cabin

One of the best places for me to fly my quadcopter is at the family cabin near Nile, WA, which is in Eastern Washington and pretty remote.  With all of the restrictions and bad news stories about idiots flying drones into populated areas, or creating unsafe conditions, I want to ensure that I am in as safe a location as possible.  While I have been flying various RC devices for 10+ years, I still never want to be responsible for damaging or hurting someone.  The result is some pretty awesome 4K video of deer on a hill, chasing Josh, the ridge, and the river, plus a bunch of stills.

I am using the DJI Phantom 3 Professional with a few modifications.  I have 6 batteries, carbon fiber protective end pieces, reinforced camera mount, and a camera protector.  I’m currently using the ThinkTank Airport Helipak backpack to carry things around.

Airport Helipak

Airport Helipak

Cliffs and Nile, WA in the distance

Cliffs and Nile, WA in the distance

I had some problems with batteries during this time, with several alerts that were very disturbing about voltage on a particular cell.  After uploading the data to Healthy Drones, I could see that several batteries reached low voltage on one cell during violent maneuvers.  DJI has since released a newer version of firmware that “fixed” this by slowing down the speed you can ascend, and probably other things.  Many people on PhantomPilots.com have complained about the changes, but DJI is obviously trying to fix the issue – most likely caused by the cold – instead of letting folks have crashes and problems.

I love the perspectives from the quad, especially the photos.  The video is something still new to me even after 3 years of it, and I’m not sure that the gigabytes of 4k videos I now have will do much but be great landscape shots for some archeologist in the future.

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About Steve Mitchell

I live in Seattle, WA and love sailing, technology, & playing and composing music. I started playing the piano when I was 3, and ended up figuring out many other instruments along the way. I'm an avid sailor and have a 2000 Beneteau 311 named Grace, and sail it whenever and wherever I can.

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