Are LEDs visible at 3km?

The Strobon arrived today from Flytron, and it is certainly bright! Question now is where on the drone to stick it, because you only get one go at this. It’s fully visble to about 45degrees off it’s axis, and pretty bright down to about 80degrees, more like 70 to the rear where the usb port gets in the way a bit.

Underneath at the back, between the status indicator light and the downward sensors, is probably good. Far enough behind the camera to not interfere with it, and visible from most angles when the drone is in the air.3. I have no doubt that it would be clearly visible in low light at 3km, possibly at 30km, and it is brighter than the bike light I’ve been experimenting with, so I’m hopeful of it’s effect in bright sunlight! Bit windy for flying unitl Sunday evo now, so we’ll have to wait…

Any advice from the hive mind on mounting position before I commit willl be appreciated, folks. Must be visible from the ground at high and low angles and not interfere with the camera; top is of little use to me. Would it interfere with the downward sensors in my proposed position? If so, plan B would put it on one of the rear legs. but that would not allow the full area of the stickon velcro to be used.

I mount my light underneath the drone in the position shown.

My own personal advice, invest in a much stronger dual lock fastner than the ones supplied. I previously lost a Strobon light to the bottom of the water where the dual lock fastner gave way.


Tx Coastal, that’s more more less where I was thinking but my Mini 2 SE looks different and doesn’t have a lot of downward-facing real estate. Flytron they have upgraded their dual-lock fasteners, but it’s a thing to watch out for. Did the fastener fail or did the glue give out? If the latter, can strengthen the bond with s/glue!

Self-adhesive backing was fine, it was the male/female part that gave way.

Yes, I’ve always had trouble with that aspect of life as well…. Good to hear that the sticky stuff is up to the job, though.

To a certain extent , they are not that good on wind calculation.

When you’re finding your feet don’t ignore or cancel that 20% warning :wink:


Physics tells us it would appear half its 3km brightness at approx 4.2km, and at 30km approx 1% brightness.

I’s a retina burner unless you face it away from you! And of course that’s exactly what I want; to maintain VLOS as required by the CAA further than I can see the drone at present, in all lighting conditions including bright daylight.

A Mini 2 SE and the various other drones that use the same or similar bodyshells is a tiny speck at anything more than about 25m from you, and even if you keep eyes on has the ability to pass in and put of your actual sight depending on the background, and it’s a bugger to locate it again even if you haven’t looked at the screen and had to look back for your drone.

At that point you have to use the screen to help you locate the drone, and until you do, you are flying illegally. If you can’t locate the little sod after a few seconds, in which time it might easily have got into danger (trees, overhead wires), it’s time to head for home until you can clearly see it and start again. Over the rec last week I lost sight and turned for home, and heard it before I saw it even though I knew what bearing it was coming on; that’s a bit worrying.

May I recommend Specsavers just been out with my mini 2 very easy to keep an eye on at 200m unaided :person_shrugging:

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I am wearing glasses when I’m out with the drone, in fact most of the time. I can manage to keep it in sight up to the 120m height ceiling, but if the background is not the sky things get a little more fraught. The Strobon should be a big help! I might be able to pick it out against a dark background at 200m with a dayglo orange skin, but tbh I doubt it! Perhaps I’m just not very sharp-eyed…

If I may ask for your tolerance for a (probably) stupid newbie question…

Winter Is Coming.

And long dark evenings with it. AIUI, there is nothing to prevent me flying my DJI Mini 2 SE at night so long as I can maintain VLOS to it, which can be done with a light on the drone. I have already fixed a Flytron Strobon light to the underneath of the drone to assist me in locating it in daylight; this would be presumably even more effective after dark (or, as we sez in Caardiff, aafta daaark).

There are obvious added risks, but in a space known to be clear of obstacles it should be fairly staightforward and safe. The intention would be ‘city lights’ photos & videos. Are there any objections to this idea that I haven’t considered, and is it in fact ‘legal’ as long as I conform to the same height and ‘drone code’ restrictions as in daytime flying? Any hints/tips/advice/comments appreciated, folks!

We moved your post to the thread that already covers your Flytron Strobon lights, the drone code is the same for daylight or night-time

Oh please noooo, we’ve had no summer yet don’t p*** over the parade :rofl:

I’ve never watched Game of Thrones…

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Me neither, but I know the quote.

Seems odd that one is apparently allowed to fly at night in the same way as one does by daylight, with no mention in the regulations of lighting, either as an aid to pocating the derone for the pilot or as a warning to other aircraft. Not that I’m complaining; I’m relishing the opportunity! As i said it should be safe so lone as one keeps to airspce known to be clear of posts, masts, wires & such and offering clear RTH routes, precautions that are sensible in daylight. Tx for the advice

Finally the weather has relented and I got some flying in this evening with the new LED. It is now much easer to locate the drone against a dark background and to an extent against a bright sky as well. A success! I’m getting better at picking out the cross shape of the drone at a distance anyway…

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Thanks for the tip, HF. I’ve been using Ventusky as my go-to since your suggestion and on the weekend deleted UAV despite the better maps and it making the ‘good to fly’ decision for me. That’s £4.99 a month; the children shall eat!

They could have dessert too with the £60 a year you waste on an app :wink:

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I wouldn’t call it a waste, any more than I wasted £250 on a drone. It served it’s purpose until HantsFlyer tipped me off about Ventusky, which App Store would not admit existed in the general search, and only confessed when I searched for it by name, so how would I otherwise have known about it? Vent is free, and while there are upgrades you can pay for I don’t need them especially, so it’s a win-win; better app for, as you say, a £60 actually £59.96 a year if you want to be pedantic, which for an impoverished pensioner is worthwhile.

Incidentally, Skytron claim the Strobon is visible at 3 miles, not 3km (and it might well be on a dark night with no other light source in the vicinity; I’ll take their word for it and have no intention of checking it out), not that this question is anything other than academic or that it was ever asked by me in the first place!