If by "Stormy" you mean "Somewhat Cloudy", and by "Sea" you mean "San Francisco Bay"...

Radio contact lost, Zephyr II with APM flies to points unknown, rescued with APM and most other electronics functioning.


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  • Developer

    I had to go chest deep into the bay before. Not fun...

  • I don't remember how, but i've configured a working failsafe on my turningy 9x unmodified when i've configured the switch mode. By default, my failsafe go manual (haha, usefull) but now it's configured for rtl. I will take a look to my apm after work to see how i've configured that :)

  • Aaaaaaaahhhhhhh.. I see....
    Adding Failsafe to the Turnigy 9x transmitter with Autopilot
    some quick notes: Problem The Turnigy 9x doesn't have a failsafe function when used with the 2.4ghz receiver.  Instead, when the radio s...
  • "You can do failsafe with turningy 9x" Not with the stock 2.4GHz reciever.
  • You can do failsafe with turningy 9x ! Moreover, it's handled by apm, i think you can do failsafe with all radio with apm.

  • As far as I know the turnigy 9x can't do failsafe. I have a frsky module on order to remedy that. I assume the most prudent failsafe setting will be RTL?

    Yesterday when it happened I was climbing out after takeoff in fbw-a mode. Suddenly it felt like I could not stop the climb. I tried frantically to switch to loiter or RTL. Somehow the plane cut power and turned left. After that it just glided into the wind for probably half a mile and landed 100 yards off shore.

    If I had gone to the console instead of running after plane, would I have been able do do anything even though it was not in auto mode? I saw today that the xbee had a connection even after I lost control.

    Next flight with failsafe.
  • Great story! Glad it wasn't a total loss. But how come you didn't have the APM's fail safe configured? Or did you?
  • Positively surprised how many components survived 45 minutes in the bay:


    GoPro + SD Card

    Motor (even though it must have gotten soaked)

    ESC even though it was exposed on the back of the plane without shrink wrap)

    Main battery, could still have flown on it...

    Video transmitter battery (one cell was down to 2.8 V but recharged OK)

    APM1 (tiny bit of salt in one corner)

    Servos (were wet)

    9x receiver


    What did not make it:

    GPS module, copper dissolved, some foam emitting and salt buildup.

    Video Transmitter. Looks charred, discolored, various buildups.

    Xbee (might risk plugging it in as it does not look as bad as the GPS and Video but has some signs of water exposure)

    Video connectors, heavy corrosion.

  • 3D Robotics

    I've done that, too, at almost exactly the same place (other side of the Berkeley Marina). I was lucky enough to have the tide and winds in my direction and got everything back after some wading. In my case, the battery fell out of my plane in the air, so it just fluttered into the water. Very embarrassing.

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