IRIS flight times?

Since it is imperative when planning auto missions to know your flight times I have been testing with stabilize/loiter hovers and measuring air time while I familiarize myself with the Arducopter platform.

I now have 17 full flights with respect to battery failsafe at 10.5 volts. I bought 3 batteries with the IRIS.

On these batteries the best hover time I can get is 10.5 to 11 minutes.

Yesterday I bought a more expensive Thunder Power RC G6 Pro Performance 3850mah 45C battery and a HI-Tech X1 MF balance charger. On the first flight with that battery I got 13 minutes hover/loiter. I hope to try it again today. Maybe it will get better after a couple of cycles. I only charged it with 1.9 amps for the first charge.

BTW - The $74 I spent on the charger was worth it. It charges the IRIS 3500 packs in an hour at 2 amps(well below 1C). The stock charger was taking 2.5 hours. it also displays the individual cell voltages and has a storage charge feature.

All battery tests were done with no payload. No legs, no camera, just like it comes out of the box.

I am curious to know what others are getting. The IRIS was advertised 10 to 15 minutes flight time. Assuming that it means 15 minutes with no payload and 10 minutes with legs and gimbal I would obviously like to be at 15 minutes with no payload. Doesn't seem possible as delivered.



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  • I also was not satisfied with 10 minute flight times so I did some digging and found out that there are some 5,000MAH batteries that fit nice and snug in the battery bay.

    I bought 2 5,000 MAH Vortex batteries off Ebay, I'm charging them right now on a duel port charger I also purchased on Ebay. BTW I'm flying with a gimbal, gopro3 and extended legs.

    Im going to fly, not just hover, until the quad goes into 'Land' mode.

    I'll post my flight times when I'm done.

    • Not to pry, but did you ever get results with those 5000mah votex batteries? I'd really like to know those real flying times with gimbal.

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    • can you show me how you mount it on the phantom. that is the exact setup I have and can't get past 7 minutes. so if I can use this battery it would be great
  • zero payload

    stock props

    Loiter hover with FS at 10.6

    Ziippy 5000

    16.3 minutes

    Not bad for the cost.

    I was only getting 15 minutes before but I had repaired a black arm and that motor was cocked a little off angle. I also had a lot of gorilla tape and CA on the repaired arm. That motor was also failing.

    I replace the arm and the motor which decreased the hover current by almost a full amp

    Still wanna try the A-SPEC 4500


    • With the stock batteries in your config I'm getting about 10 minutes (now that I can fly well enough to be aloft that long) and got about the same as you with the zippy 5000 (16 minutes).  Yes the zippy is a good deal!

  • Where are you guys tweaking the battery config, and what values do you use to account for a higher mAh battery?


    • You set the battery failsafe under "Initial Settings/Mandatory Hardware/Failsafe while the Pixhawk is connected to your computer. You don't have to have the battery in the copter.

      You can set the battery failsafe voltage and whatever mode you want it to be in when the failsafe kicks in.

      You can then turn on the battery warning verbal message from the GCS by going to "Config/Tuning/Planner" When you check the battery warning box it will ask you to enter the voltage and pcnt that you want the warning. I set the warning at 10.7 and the failsafe at 10.6. I set the percentage warning and failsafe at zero. I only care about the voltage. I uses different sized packs a lot and I don't want to have to change the setting every flight. In addition, the percentage levels are strictly non-empirical calculations. The voltage level is a directly measured value.

      You don't really need to track mah values while flying anyway. you just want it on the ground before the voltage gets too low.

      hope this helps

  • Received the Zippy 5000 from Amazon yesterday, soldered on the XT-60's, topped of the charge and performed a loiter hover. 16 minutes. One strange thing is that when I recharged the battery last night the charger cut-off and said "overcharge warning". The charger was set for a 5000mah limit. It had calculated that it put in more that 5000mah based on time and current. I was charging at 1C.

    The time may go up after a few cycles but the batt was only $38. The stock batts gets 10 minutes which means I got a 60% increase in flight time for a battery that cost the same amount as the stock battery. I will update after a few more cycles. On the stock batteries my times went up by about 5% after 5-7 cycles.

    The hover current was 14 to 15 amps while stock battery is 12.5 to 14. Obviously the extra weight causes the higher draw at hover.


    • My charger did the same cutoff, I believe its from these batteries slightly underrated. After my charger shutoff, I restarted it and it put another 500 mah into the battery.
    • After I ran it down to 10.6 again it took 5350mah on the next charge

      Jury is still on this batt. I've seen 17 ,I'm with no payload posted using the Turnigy 4400
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