By LOZ BLAIN DECEMBER 20, 2015
You've got your first quadcopter, you've read the broken-English manual and assembled it, you've got your head around the transmitter and you're ready to give this thing a crack. Here are some basic exercises to try on your first few flights that will hopefully help you make it to your second few flights with just as many props, frames, pets and limbs as you started with.
First things first:
If you're flying anything heavier than, say, 200 g (7 oz), you're going to have to do it outside. Look for somewhere:
Don't fly in high winds. In fact, for your first flight you'll want as little wind as possible, particularly if your drone is fairly light or not equipped with GPS stabilization.
You might need more space than you think. Even a small drone can easily get away from you and end up 50 meters away in just about any direction if you panic and hit the wrong controls!
If you're flying a small, light drone like the Hubsan X4, Blade Nano or Syma X5, you're probably safer starting off inside in a clear room where you won't have to compensate for wind. Mini, micro and nano class drones tend to get blown around a bit outside.
In both cases, stay away from people, and be aware that quadcopters tend to upset pets.
Before you take to the air, a few quick checks can save you a lot of heartache and spare parts.
All good? Let's fly!
IF YOU CRASH, THROTTLE OFF IMMEDIATELY!
This is an important reflex to develop. You're gonna crash this thing. It might get tangled in tree leaves or long grass. It might end up upside down on pavement or stones. Heck, if you're out of control it might end up flying right into your face. Whatever happens, you don't want those props spinning.
At a minimum you'll scuff up the propellers, affecting their aerodynamics and your ability to fly smoothly. If a prop is stuck and the throttle is left on, you can burn out your motors. And of course, if it's flying right at your face the last thing you want is a high-speed haircut. Cut the throttle immediately.
The pointers and insights appearing in this beginner tutorial may seem obvious to experienced members, but could save a novice flyer a lot of grief in damaged hardware and unintended personal and/or property damage.
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