Welcome DJI Spark Pilot!
Jump in and join our free Spark community today!
Sign up

Lost Spark flying Litchi. What Happened?

Roger S

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
101
Age
35
I was flying the boundary of my land, a Litchi mission I've flown many times, 3rd time today, good GPS lock. My attention wondered a few seconds till I heard the beeping: Signal Lost. The Spark had flown ~1,000 ft off course at last contact. Before I first used Litchi I changed Smart Return To Home from off to on. It now in off on my phone. Is that because it's disconnected from the AC? If SRTH was off would the bird have hovered in place till the battery died, then fell when, it lost signal?
 
Last edited:

Gavieboydgi

Well-Known Member
Premium Pilot
Join
Mar 3, 2018
Messages
742
Age
36
When signal lost with dji Go the bird flies home.
It really depends on what you choose as your finished action, whenever you lose signal with litchi it should continue the mission and then should reconnect to your r.c but if you have the mission finish action not set in settings the spark would of just hovered at the last waypoint.
Check what action was set in your litchi setting sometimes it's set to return to 1st waypoint.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Chuck Halfacre

Roger S

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
101
Age
35
Yeah Litchi doesn't do that when flying litchi way points mission's it continues till it reconnect to your remote control again.
It veered off ~90 degrees after starting the mission then lost connection after which it apparently hovered in place till the battery died. See attached maps and flight log. Oct-13th-2018-05-26PM-Flight-Airdata.JPG is the lost flight. Oct-13th-2018-05-17PM-Flight-Airdata.JPG is the previous flight of the same Litchi mission flown successfully.
 

Attachments

Last edited:

Roger S

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
101
Age
35
dji is reviewing my flight record. As I understand they will usually replace the drone if lost due to malfunction. Is this only the case if flying with DJI Go or will dji support flying with Litchi?
 

msinger

DJI Drone Expert
Approved Vendor
Premium Pilot
Join
May 27, 2017
Messages
2,625
Loc
Harrisburg, PA (US)
Web
www.Spark-Help.com
Is this only the case if flying with DJI Go or will dji support flying with Litchi?
It's the case if they can prove without a doubt that the software did not cause the problem. That's sometimes tough when using apps like Litchi that keep poor flight logs.
 

Poletramp

Well-Known Member
Join
Jun 24, 2018
Messages
143
You can get lots of info about your flight at airdata.com Just create a free account and sync your data . It will tell you if you lost signal to sats etc etc You can even view your flight in a HD flight player .I could go on and on about all the info you can get Batterie info even your stick movement on your RC .
 

Nope 2.0

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 17, 2018
Messages
156
Loc
Houston Texas
I was flying the boundary of my land, a Litchi mission I've flown many times, 3rd time today, good GPS lock. My attention wondered a few seconds till I heard the beeping: Signal Lost. The Spark had flown ~1,000 ft off course at last contact. Before I first used Litchi I changed Smart Return To Home from off to on. It now in off on my phone. Is that because it's disconnected from the AC? If SRTH was off would the bird have hovered in place till the battery died, then fell when, it lost signal?
I got a new spark after fighting Dji custom service for a couple of months
<make sure to reply daily
 
  • Like
Reactions: Brojon

Roger S

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
101
Age
35
I just called dji tech support since I hadn't heard back since reporting the loss and sending dji the Litchi flight record. I was told they don't support flying with Litchi or any other 3rd party software and there was nothing they can do.

From losing 3 drones this year I've learned 3 lessons:

1. Don't fly outdoors until you know what you're doing. My cheap drone flew away immediately after taking off the 1st time outdoors. I should have stayed indoors a bit longer. I hear a lot of advice on this forum against flying indoors, but the damage incurred flying into walls is less painful than losing the bird.

2. Don't fly if GPS is weak. I lost my 1st Spark while trying to get a GPS lock in front of my house that's located in a redwood forested ravine in the mountains.

3. Don't fly with 3rd party software unless...

Litchi by default has Smart Return to Home turned off. This is a very bad idea in my opinion. I turned it on before using it for the 1st time, but now it's off again. The AC lost connection after flying into a hilly, heavily wooded area where it apparently hovered in place till the battery died and will probably remain for years several hundred feet up in a cluster of redwood, oak and madrone trees. With dji Go it would have returned home immediately after losing connection which it did often. Does Litchi offer any flight analysis or other support for disasters like this? They don't seem very easy to reach.

I've been considering moving up to a Mavic or Phantom, but after 3 losses I'm afraid I'd be a nervous wreck with that much $ in the air.
 
Last edited:

V'lar

Well-Known Member
Join
Sep 5, 2017
Messages
63
Age
64
I had my spark fly lichi waypoints at full speed over a lake and back at 30 meters height and had confidence in both.
At the last waypoint, which was close to me, the spark suddenly changed direction and crashed into a tree.
I could have stopped it if I had not been so confident, but I was not really paying attention.
Fortunately it fell on land. The log shows compass errror.
Before and after the flight, the compass calibration was fine. It has not been calibrated recently.
There was nothing that could have disturbed the compass, so I solely blame the spark.
 

Roger S

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
101
Age
35
I had my spark fly lichi waypoints at full speed over a lake and back at 30 meters height and had confidence in both.
At the last waypoint, which was close to me, the spark suddenly changed direction and crashed into a tree.
I could have stopped it if I had not been so confident, but I was not really paying attention.
Fortunately it fell on land. The log shows compass errror.
Before and after the flight, the compass calibration was fine. It has not been calibrated recently.
There was nothing that could have disturbed the compass, so I solely blame the spark.
I'm afraid I also become overconfident ant took my eye off the ball. If I'd noticed when it first strayed off course I could have taken corrective action before the connection was lost (which isn't very far in the direction it flew, and without auto return to home...).

Where did you find compass error in the log? I don't see any column headings in the log mentioning "compass" and nothing in the App_Warning column. Thanks
 

V'lar

Well-Known Member
Join
Sep 5, 2017
Messages
63
Age
64
It seems I remember wrong. Ouch. The litchi app certaionly said compass error.
The log does not mention it. Here it is. From the farthest waypoint, it should have gone straight back, but suddenly turned right and met a tree.
 

Poletramp

Well-Known Member
Join
Jun 24, 2018
Messages
143
If you hit the the sensor tab then compass and read the info .

Found rate of change in the compass of 25 degrees or more per 0.1 seconds.
That's about a 90 degree turn in a third of a second, which is not normal.

This can be a result of extremly strong winds, a crash into an object or a bad compass.
 

Chuck Halfacre

Well-Known Member
Join
Sep 30, 2018
Messages
62
Age
59
Loc
40 Miles out side of Las Vegas
dji is reviewing my flight record. As I understand they will usually replace the drone if lost due to malfunction. Is this only the case if flying with DJI Go or will dji support flying with Litchi?
It's setting in in a tree! My drone disconnected from the remote the other day when I went back to look for the Drone in which it said returning to home I looked all over on the ground it was not there. Then I looked up it landed in one of our pine trees for some reason.
 
  • Love
Reactions: Filipok

Spark 317

Well-Known Member
Premium Pilot
Join
Jul 10, 2017
Messages
2,988
Loc
Indiana, USA
Then I looked up it landed in one of our pine trees for some reason.
Hello from the Hoosier Heartland, Chuck Halfacre.

At least a pine tree is semi-navigable if you have to climb it.

It's always good to have a an arborist, rock climber, or a scuba diver on speed dial, just in case RTH doesn't work as planned.:D

Welcome to the Forum.:cool:
 

Locutus40

Well-Known Member
Join
Sep 17, 2018
Messages
138
DONT USE LITCHI ITS PLAUGED WITH PROBLEMS IF YOU WANT WAY P OINTS USE THIS APP FOR ANDROID.. NOT SURE ABOUT APPLE PRODUCTS.. BUT ITS CALLED..DJI MISSION..

YOU HAVE TO USE IT WITH THE DJI GO 4 MOD VERSION YOU CANT USE IT WITH THE STOCK APP..

SO WHAT YOU DO IS FIND DJI GO 4 MOD INSTALL IT THERES A WHOLE FORUM ON IT.... THEN INSTALL THE DJI MISSION APP... MAKE SURE TO HAVE WIFI CONNECTED BEFORE YOU FLY SO AT HOME IF YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR GUNNA FLY.. JUST ZOOM IN AND AROUND THE MAP AREA AND FARTHER OUT JUST IN CASE.. ON BOTH THE MOD APP AND THE MISSION APP...

THEN WHILE IN THE MISSION APP YOU CAN AT HOME.. SAY A FEILD ETC TAP WHERE YOU WANT IT TO FLY THE ORIENTATION IT FLIES HIGHT AND WHAT IT DOES AT END OF MISSION IE RETURN TO HOME.. MY SUGGESTION DONT USE THAT JUST USE THE STOP AT LAST MISSION OR WHAT EVER ITS CALLED...
THEN DISCONNECT YOUR WIFI.. ON YOUR DEVICE.. GO TO THAT FEILD ETC...
OPEN THE MOD APP ITS RED IN COLOR...

AND CLICK THE SYMBOL TO FLY MISSIONS IN THE MODDED APP THERE SHOULD BE ON THE RIGHT SIDE THE NAME OF THE MISSIONS FROM DJI MISSION THAT YOU MADE.. JUST PUT YOUR DRONE ON THE GROUND CALIBRATE THE COMPASS... TAKE OFF LET IT HOVER THEN CLICK ON THE MISSION YOU MADE AND IT WILL FLY TO THE FIRST POINT AND DO ITS MISSION THEN JUST HOVER WHERE IT STOPS... MAKE SURE TO USE A OTG CABLE AND TURN OFF YOUR WIFI AND.. IF YOUR HAVEING CONNECTION ISSUES FORMAT YOUR SD CARD ON THE DRONE WITH THE STOCK APP... TURN OFF CACHE OR AUDIO RECORDING.... AND HAVE FUN ITS SIMPLE IT REALLY IS..
 

Chuck Halfacre

Well-Known Member
Join
Sep 30, 2018
Messages
62
Age
59
Loc
40 Miles out side of Las Vegas
Hello from the Hoosier Heartland, Chuck Halfacre.

At least a pine tree is semi-navigable if you have to climb it.

It's always good to have a an arborist, rock climber, or a scuba diver on speed dial, just in case RTH doesn't work as planned.:D

Welcome to the Forum.:cool:
All I had to do is grab a steel rake with a 6ft handle an grabbed the branch at almost the end and pulled real hard. I was real lucky that I was able to catch my drone before it hit the ground. Oh and no prop's broke that in it's self I was in shock over! lol
 
  • Like
Reactions: Roger S

Roger S

Well-Known Member
Join
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
101
Age
35
If you hit the the sensor tab then compass and read the info .

Found rate of change in the compass of 25 degrees or more per 0.1 seconds.
That's about a 90 degree turn in a third of a second, which is not normal.

This can be a result of extremly strong winds, a crash into an object or a bad compass.
Ok Great I found the compass data on Airdata. It shows Max compass turn
turn rate at point B of 16.70 per 0.1 seconds. There was very little wind and it obviously hadn't crashed at that point. dji is still reviewing my case. I hear a lot about these compass errors. Consumer Reports did a review of consumer drones about a year ago and the Spark got first place, but it flew away during testing presumably due to a compass failure. Both Litchi and dji Go produce very comprehensive flight records down to the voltage in each cell in the battery, but I don't see any thing about compass in the csv file.
 

Attachments

Last edited:

New Threads

Forum statistics

Threads
10,591
Messages
87,837
Members
14,619
Latest member
Frankiep