I was flying my hex today, as I was headed toward my current position it decided to not respond to my controls and keep going over me. It was about 100 feet up then looked to increase altitude a bit and kept going away.  It seemed to level off and head the standard direction it would go with no input.  Eventually it was out of sight and long gone.

Does anyone know what could have happened.  I was in stabilized flight mode and the copter was within 200 feet of me when I lost control.  Also any ideas how to get it back, I had my Gopro attached to it recording the flight.

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What was your failsafe set to do?

I had no fail-safe.  Are you referring to the fail-safe option that had been added to the mission planner recently or a fail-safe on the receiver?.

Estimate the speed it was flying and how long it could have stayed in the air.  That'll give you an approximate distance to where it went down.  Plot a line of that length in google earth in the direction it flew away in.

Now go search in that area.

Lots of things could have happened : failsafe, apm frozen, receiver brownout of failure...  Without logs we 're just guessing.

I did an estimate on where it could be and it had a fairly fresh battery so it could have had 10 min of flight.  It was doing a large circle at first but i believe it would have straightened out so if that's the case its probably in a field somewhere which would make it very hard to locate.  I guess the only hope at this point is someone posts it as lost and found but i can't see that happening.

This is terrible and another reason to placard our aircraft with a "If found call/contact...".

I hope you were not in a populated area. The more rural, the less chance of a finder/keeper situation... except for our friend u4eake. He was rural and the plane found the only two girls in a half kilometer radius!

My Spektrum receiver has a fail-safe setting.. and I need to set it up ASAP.

Good luck Colin!

-=Doug

Yeah, I've lost both my fpv plane and my arduhexa a total of 4 times.  2 times in a large cornfield, but I was lucky enough to find them back each time with the help of google earth, a directional antenna and a good deal of luck.

Here's a little report on my search for the twinstar in a large (well large for Belgium that is, in the US this would be a local park) swamp area : Search for lost twinstar .  It's in Dutch, but I'm sure google can translate to something understandable.  If  not, the pictures speak a thousand words :-)

Remarkable was that the gps module had detached from the plane in the crash and was somewhere in the goo around it.  I was doubting wether I would stick my hand in the goo trying to find it.  Knowing the chanses were very small and the goo was disgusting it was a tough call.  I decided to do it, put both hands in, immediately felt a little block, took it out and had my gps in my hand.  That gps is still working fine today !

The time the hexa was lost in a cornfield, I found it after 20 min walking through the cornfield (lucky again), but I saw where it approximately went down.  I got it out of the field, still armed (leds on), disarmed, armed again and flew 3 more minutes until the battery was empty.

So I know the feeling of loosing your gear.  I just wish you the same luck as I had and hope you find your stuff again.

And the twinstar?  I'm thinking of renaming it to GirlStar or something :-)

I've been thinking of adding this to my copter:

GSM-GPRS-GPS-Tracker-System

This sends an SMS message to your cellphone with the GPS coordinates.

The weight is 50gr, but I don't know if this is with or without the battery.

Anyone else try this?

After the recent events I was looking into this also.  I found a few DIY versions that use radio and GPS but couldn't find detailed steps or a receiver.

These ones seem like an easy way to go but you have to put in a SIM card.  Do you know if you need a cell plan for it to work? 

Any use of the SMS messaging would require a Sim card and a plan.  The cheapest I could find was $10/month.  I haven't looked at using the sim card from a "disposable" phone from Wal Mart, but I think the minutes on those have an expiration date as well.

OTOH, $10 per month is cheap insurance that I can find what's left of my copter after it leaves the area .

I echo Gary's question about failsafe but also ask what Transmitter/Receiver you were using?

-=Doug

It's actually $1/day with no monthly minimum, but T-mobile's coverage sucks if you aren't in a large town or city.  Away from town is where we are likely to fly.

I have three phones on T-Mobile, but I am locked into a contract.  

I'll print their web page and go to a Verizon store and inquire if they have a similar plan.

Hi, yeah, that sucks. I had a similar situation a whist ago. My quad took a direction and maintained at about 50m. I had telemetry on, but it dissapeared behind a rise and I lost the telemetry. By then - battle stations. I loaded my kit and stormed into the grassland. I searched for a whilst, but started loosing hope when I noticed that after I went over the rise, the telemetry was up again. I found the last transmitted coordinate, punched it into my cars GPS and found my quad 10 minutes later. We had a team talk(me and my quad) and decided to setup the failsafe and not assume all will be well. It is still with me and never showed that behaviour again, so I can assume human error in setting up the waypoints.

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