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Does anyone else trust themselves more than the Spark?

Akuen_527

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Hey all, question for you guys/gals.

When you fly the spark, do you freely use the intelligent takeoff and landing, return to home button, etc? I know this stuff is all supposed to work, but then again I have also seen times where people press return to home, and the drone just hovers before heading off east somewhere never to be seen again. With that in mind, I use the stick commands and manually takeoff/land my Spark, and if I fly out somewhere I manually fly it back(with the gps on and home point locked just as a failsafe).

Are other people as paranoid about fly-aways as I am, or is it just a new drone owner being overly cautious about nothing?
 

nilanjan118

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I know this stuff is all supposed to work, but then again I have also seen times where people press return to home, and the drone just hovers before heading off east somewhere never to be seen again.
I own the Spark since 12 Oct 2018 and joined this forum on 1 Nov 2018. Before buying the Spark, I didn't know about all its functions. I didn't read any reviews be it good or bad and didn't visit any of the Spark forums. I just trusted the brand DJI and bought it because it fitted my budget. For the first fifteen or twenty days, I totally enjoyed flying the Spark. I would fly out in Sports mode and hit the RTH button whenever I lost VLOS. It never failed me and I had no fear to lose my drone because honestly, I had no idea what a fly-away was. In fact since I live in a non-FCC country I used to lose connection at barely 300m away from home point and it was always RTH which brought the drone back. Likewise, I didn't know that the battery could even pop out mid-flight. Then one fine day, I chanced upon this forum while I was searching for ways to improve my range or force FCC-mode and it opened up the Pandora's box. Within a week, I found out all the "problems" the Spark had and also learnt about DJI's "poor service". And now I always put on a battery clip and seldom use the RTH button. Call it getting paranoid? Why not?
 
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Putz

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When I had a spark and now with my MP, I always fly manually. I use precision takeoff and that's about it. I used a battery clip on the spark, it gave me piece of mind. I can't remember the last time I pushed RTH. I always just figured it would help in the event I needed it. I know that there are millions of successful flights compared to the handful of failures you read about on here and other forums. It has also been determined that a majority of those failures were probably operator error. I just feel like if I put the bird in my control and not that of a computer, I could minimize the chances of having a bad flight. Not to mention I bought the thing to fly, not stand and watch it do its own thing.
 

Salty Spark

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It’s taking me a bit to trust looking at the display on my GN8 once it’s difficult to, Well, spot.. I’m getting my head around it all, I know the RTH is all there, but I treat it as backup as far as I’m concerned .I make sure that it’s all secure as far as gps acquisition, home pt set etc and off I go. After flying gliders for decades, it’s a bit of re-education for this bloke. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that there is quiet a bit of tech inside and there is always the possibility that it can go pear shaped. At the end of the day, under autonomous control, we’re at the mercy of those that control the satellite systems that the gps is based in. Loving the Spark.
 
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lmel2005

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Without GPS, compass, sensors, and all the software used for stabilization and flying, spark cannot fly at all.

So, we ALWAYS use Spark's automation.

I like to fly manually, because it's more fun.
But sometimes, I use autonomous modes, without issues until now.

Also, I always try to fly by book, because I'm afraid of a fly-away, too (I'm afraid of myself more than Spark).

So, try to fly within the specs, trust technology, and remember that fear is our defence.
 

Kilo2

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My Spark got 1600km / 1100mil and 100h flights. No problem.
IMG_20190412_110402.jpeg
 

BigAl07

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I'm not paranoid about Fly Aways or anything per se but I genuinely enjoy FLYING the aircraft myself. I don't use AUTO takeoff, landing or RTH at all except to demonstrate it to new people. Honestly I feel RTH is a emergency feature and should only be used when something keeps you from being able to get the aircraft back to the home point. Way too many other variables that could cause a crash during an automatic RTH to use it as a crutch instead of flying the aircraft.

Just my 2-cents.
 

Andre Levite

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I'm not paranoid about Fly Aways or anything per se but I genuinely enjoy FLYING the aircraft myself. I don't use AUTO takeoff, landing or RTH at all except to demonstrate it to new people. Honestly I feel RTH is a emergency feature and should only be used when something keeps you from being able to get the aircraft back to the home point. Way too many other variables that could cause a crash during an automatic RTH to use it as a crutch instead of flying the aircraft.

Just my 2-cents.
Totally agree.

It's easy and fun to manually takeoff, land and return to home. Every minute you spend controlling your drone with the joysticks adds to your flight experience and muscle memory. What's the point of pushing a button and the drone functioning without your input?

I've reserved push-button RTH for emergency and thankfully never needed it. I don't see any benefit of automated takeoff or landing - initially getting airborne and safely setting down are often the most rewarding part of a flight - usually grinning ear to ear.
 

BigAl07

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Totally agree.

It's easy and fun to manually takeoff, land and return to home. Every minute you spend controlling your drone with the joysticks adds to your flight experience and muscle memory. What's the point of pushing a button and the drone functioning without your input?

I've reserved push-button RTH for emergency and thankfully never needed it. I don't see any benefit of automated takeoff or landing - initially getting airborne and safely setting down are often the most rewarding part of a flight - usually grinning ear to ear.

Very well said. I guess some people like to "program the flight" rather than fly it.
 
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DavidBlezard

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Hey all, question for you guys/gals.

When you fly the spark, do you freely use the intelligent takeoff and landing, return to home button, etc? I know this stuff is all supposed to work, but then again I have also seen times where people press return to home, and the drone just hovers before heading off east somewhere never to be seen again. With that in mind, I use the stick commands and manually takeoff/land my Spark, and if I fly out somewhere I manually fly it back(with the gps on and home point locked just as a failsafe).

Are other people as paranoid about fly-aways as I am, or is it just a new drone owner being overly cautious about nothing?
I like to use the RTH on a long flight to take some pictures and let it do the work of getting back to me. One main reason is to see how often RTH works correctly versus a fly away. You can always Cancel the RTH if things are not going your way.
 

Northwood Mediaworks

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I use the automatic take off generally, but usually fly back manually and hand land for most flights. After reading this and other forums for the past several years, I must admit each time I fly I feel like I am rolling the dice somewhat. I've lost my toy drone twice, found it twice, but its $100 and one can accept that as a loss. but with the Spark flymore... in Canada a year ago that was $800, so there is definitely some stress each time I go up.. I do all the pre-flight checks and so on, pay a great deal of attention to my location, wind, and weather in general. I have used RTH a few times when I stretched my LOS limits. I've never used any of the intelligent flight modes so far, and would NEVER trust hand gestures. My 2 cents CDN (1.5 cents in USD! ha ha!)
 
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msinger

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nilanjan118

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My Spark got 1600km / 1100mil and 100h flights. No problem.
View attachment 9551
Appreciate your skills and your achievements but this kind of posts can lead to outrageous expectations from the Spark. And to be fair to DJI's engineers, they never designed the Spark to reach these numbers. 77km/hr? That's not a "Spark" anymore. Well it is your drone and you are free to do anything with it but sharing these stats in public forums can mislead many new members. I hope you get the point I am trying to make.
 

nilanjan118

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It's easy and fun to manually takeoff, land and return to home.
Agree with most of points you made but I have just one question. How is auto take-off dangerous? Not trying to contradict or get into an argument but there are few "features" I have striked off and never use them as I feel they are not as safe as advertised. Gesture controls and palm launch for example. So based on your explanation I may just add another feature to the list. ;)
 

lmel2005

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I have used hand launch, by double clicking power button (it sets spark in gesture mode), and never felt it was dangerous.

On the other hand, I feel that hand launching, using manual takeoff, IS dangerous, because I must make a CSC holding spark at the same time.
 
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Andre Levite

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Agree with most of points you made but I have just one question. How is auto take-off dangerous? Not trying to contradict or get into an argument but there are few "features" I have striked off and never use them as I feel they are not as safe as advertised. Gesture controls and palm launch for example. So based on your explanation I may just add another feature to the list. ;)
You got that wrong...

If you carefully reread my post you will see that I never said that auto take off was "dangerous". So I cannot respond to your question.

You must have read that on somebody else's post and mis-attributed that comment to me. The fact is I have never used that feature and don't see any advantage over manual take off. So not dangerous -- just useless to me.

And I am even more surprised that you have labeled palm launch as "not safe". I use ii for about 50% my flights because I fly at the beach and tall brush where take off from the ground is impossible. It is safe and convenient and protects my Spark from damage from sand and tall grass. Same for palm landing They are actually my two favorite and most used Spark features.
 
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nilanjan118

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You got that wrong...

If you carefully reread my post you will see that I never said that auto take off was "dangerous". So I cannot respond to your question.

You must have read that on somebody else's post and mis-attributed that comment to me. The fact is I have never used that feature and don't see any advantage over manual take off. So not dangerous -- just useless to me.

And I am even more surprised that you have labeled palm launch as "not safe". I use ii for about 50% my flights because I fly at the beach and tall brush where take off from the ground is impossible. It is safe and convenient and protects my Spark from damage from sand and tall grass. Same for palm landing They are actually my two favorite and most used Spark features.
Ah! Bad choice of word I admit. I said "dangerous" for a feature like Palm Launch in terms of having the hand close to the spinning propellers leaving a chance of injury on the odd occasion. It is true that usefulness of any of the features is more about user preference. So I understand now why you said you don't use auto take off or landing. Likewise, I don't find Palm launch or land useful cause I always find a good surface to take off or land. I like to use the combination stick command on the RC to start the motors and take off.
 
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Andre Levite

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Ah! Bad choice of word I admit. I said "dangerous" for a feature like Palm Launch in terms of having the hand close to the spinning propellers leaving a chance of injury on the odd occasion. It is true that usefulness of any of the features is more about user preference. So I understand now why you said you don't use auto take off or landing. Likewise, I don't find Palm launch or land useful cause I always find a good surface to take off or land. I like to use the combination stick command on the RC to start the motors and take off.
It's nearly impossible to get hands in blades with palm launch since the Spark goes up and away from your hand immediately.

And with palm landing the Spark is hovering stationary and you come in from the side.

Good to wear sunglasses and be mindful of wind direction as extra precaution.

I've done it hundreds of times with the Spark but not brave (or foolish) enough to try with my Mavic Pro. My primary use for the Spark is specifically for hand launch at locations where MP can't reach safe ground. For me that comes up often and I don't like to carry a landing pad.
 

Spark 317

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And with palm landing the Spark is hovering stationary and you come in from the side.

Good to wear sunglasses and be mindful of wind direction as extra precaution.

... Because you want to look cool when doing so. 😎
 

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