Novice, wanting to upgrade...

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Roger EWing, Sep 30, 2017.

  1. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

    Absolutely. Moz is flying brushed FPV racers, so he is living a different reality. 12 mph is a lot of wind for that quad and where you are on the learning curve. 17 mph is in the "fugeddaboudit" range.
  2. KentA

    KentA Well-Known Member

    A steady 12 mph wind can be a challenge but wind gusts are a danger if you're flying a small drone or carrying plywood up a ladder.
  3. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    On original topic...

    My replacement 818 is on the way. I'll be doing some more playing with that.

    On my original topic of wanting to upgrade: I had been thinking I want the P4P, maybe even the plus. But, now I'm thinking maybe the Mavic.

    The reason I was considering the P4P was particularly for the better camera. And, I have what is probably grandiose plans of maybe going commercial. But as I think about it, having the learning curve ahead, and if wanting to go commercial, passing the 107'll be a while before I can go commercial. Who knows, maybe I'll decide it isn't worth it. Just attaining the license isn't even the hardest part. The hardest part is effectively marketing and building any type of business with it at all.

    So, maybe the Mavic is a good way to go, then if/when I pass the 107, and mayibe have explored business type opportunities...I can go to the expense of the P4P, or maybe by then P5X.

    Just thinking out loud for the moment...
  4. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

    I wouldn't cut the frame on this one or try to fly it in a lot of wind. You made some progress learning the basics indoors, build on that. If you're thinking about a Mavic or a P4P you have the budget to move to an intermediate quad to transition. Just my suggestion....
  5. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    Sounds good.

    What would your suggestion be for the intermediate one? I am presuming Jackson's earlier suggestions were more as a direct replacement of my lost drone.
  6. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

    I would look at Hubsan and MJX to start with. Others may have some additional suggestions. For your step up, look at brushless motor quads. Up to you if you want to consider GPS or FPV, but if you are planning on a Mavic or a P4 anyway, I would save the money and look for a mostly manual brushless that you can continue learning to fly the old fashioned way. learning to fly a Mavic or Phantom is like falling off a log - they almost fly themselves, which is why they're lousy for learning to fly on.

    A good option cheap would be an MJX Bugs 3. It's a no-frills solid brushless quad, and it's cheap. Go to and create an account, and search using "Bugs". You can get a Bugs 3 with some kind of case (no idea if the case is any good) for $65, which is a steal. Plus it's fulfilled by Amazon. Read reviews on the Bugs 3 for more info, but it will carry a GoPro or clone just fine, and in high rate it's plenty fast. Also as your skills progress you will find it flies very well in windy conditions. If you want GPS, FPV, and other features both Hubsan and MJX have other good options.
  7. Jeff Neese

    Jeff Neese Well-Known Member

    That quad is never going to live up to its potential until you take off the foam frame. It's been suggested to cut it off, but you can also take the entire thing off in one piece. Then you can either buy a "beetle" canopy (linked) or just make one yourself from the bottom of a soda bottle. You'll be amazed at how much better it flies, and handles the wind just fine. I speak from experience. That's not a bad quadcopter once you strip it down. Pretty decent, actually.
  8. Jeff Neese

    Jeff Neese Well-Known Member

    Here's an example of making your own canopy from the bottom of a Coke bottle. This is a different quad but the configuration on many of these is the exact same. Trust me - take the whole damn thing off and you'll feel like you have an entirely different quadcopter.

  9. KentA

    KentA Well-Known Member

    Which quad? MJX Bugs 3?
  10. Jeff Neese

    Jeff Neese Well-Known Member

    This entire thread is about Roger's UDI U818A and his desire to upgrade because it doesn't fly well in the wind, in stock form. I'm pointing out that it flies a lot better than he thinks it does, once you remove the canopy and foam ring.
  11. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    Thanks for the input guys. I will take advice and sees how it goes. I will hang onto my DJI budget for a while.

    As this thread is really intended for upgrade discussions, just for fun I will open a Novice's what's happening thread for general interest and advice. Maybe it will help others who stumble on looking for learning guidance. I'll post how I'm practicing, how it's going and of course look for feedback.

    I'm out of town for a few days so it'll be a few before the new exploration starts.
  12. Bradmadison

    Bradmadison Member

    Or Mabey hubsan 501a just a thought
  13. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    Well, crap. The 818A I purchased on eBay is here. I guess they had an upgraded version also with the same 818A designation.

    So I had the upgraded version, and the one that just arrived is the old version. Pretty much everything is different. So this one has one small tiny battery (about half the size as my lost one) . So I have 6 batteries and 2 3 battery chargers that will be of no use.

    {SIGH} {/SIGH}
  14. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

    That SUCKS. No possibility the batteries can still be used with it?
  15. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    Nah. The compartment size, as well as the connectors, are very different. I charged the battery and did a quick lift-off test, and it immediately went to the left and back a little. I'm presuming that the trims need to be set. I'll have to go outside to do that. But I'm doubting I'll do much with it...don't want to invest in a bunch of batteries for it.

    So, I had a 'parts unit' of my old one. It had acted like the board was bad, and the source I purchased from on Amazon sent me a new one, told me to keep the old one for parts.

    So, the symptom was a motor not working. So, I took a motor off the one from eBay, and gave it a try. SAme symptoms. Must be the board:

  16. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    So, I'm needing to just go ahead and get something intermediate. I don't find a Bugs3 on Vipon. I did find the drone from your link, the DROCON Bugs 6 Brushless Racing Drone. This is from one of the reviews on Amazon (I put one of his comments in red):

    I have been researching, and building a spreadsheet. So I hope to decide on what to buy next soon.
  17. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

  18. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    Thanks! Don't know why I didn't see it. Maybe because of all the other crap that came up in the search. I just ordered it.

    Now I need to spend the $ for a GoPro, as I do want to play with vids too. Won't be the same experience, but when I upgrade to a pro type, I'll get there.

    I was really tempted to get the Hubsan 501A X4, but the controller won't support a screen larger than 5.5". Crazy. That won't even support my phone, let alone a tablet.
  19. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

    Personally, I wouldn't shell out the money for a GoPro, since there are so many good clones out there for so much cheaper. You will have to do a lot of research to choose one, but you seem to be willing to do that. Look at reviews, side-by-side comparison videos on YouTube, etc. FWIW, I have an SJCam SJ5000x Elite that I love. The only downside is that the start/stop button doesn't match the hole on the Bugs' camera mount just right so you will have to enlarge the hole. There are lots of other good ones.

    I shot a short video using the SJCam on the Bugs 3 just to give an idea of the video quality:
  20. Roger EWing

    Roger EWing Too many hobbies

    Looks pretty good. I appreciate your feedback.

    For this drone, I'm not sure I need great video. I might even be happy with 720P. I consider this learning/fun. When I move to a more expensive camera, that's a different story.

    I'm interested in FPV, and interested in goggles. I was planning on researching cameras for the Bug.

    I don't know at this point if FPV with goggles is even possible with the bug at this point. I'll do some research, and feedback appreciated.

    Of course, the important thing is to learn handling.

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