Frustrated in West Sussex

Hi all,

I’ve come across the forum after watching several YouTube videos pertaining to the regulatory situation. I bought a Mavic Air 2 direct from DJI just a few days ago, but unfortunately decided to cancel the order after reading about the certification and ADS-B situation.

Hopefully it won’t be too long before we see aircraft with these features, but I’m not holding my breath.

I used to fly nitro helicopters and was a member of the Box Hill Heli Club, but haven’t flown for several years now. I do still have a few models in the loft as I can’t bear to part with them, and who knows, perhaps one day I might even fly them again, but for now it’s a drone I’m after!

I honestly thought I had it all worked out. The Air 2 looked had the perfect balance of price and performance for me, but this certification business has really thrown a spanner into the works.

I intend to keep up to date with developments on the forum, and being a very active and longstanding member on another, unrelated forum, I appreciate just how valuable the knowledge and experience of the membership can be to a ‘newbie’.

I’m located in Worthing on the West Sussex coast where we have some really great locations for flying. We also own horses and my wife is thrilled by the idea of aerial footage of her shenanigans, and even acquired her flyer ID yesterday.

Looking forward to chatting with you all,



Welcome to the forum Bodie, hope you enjoy your stay with us, lots of our members come from an RC background like yourself.

I wouldn’t get too hung up on the CE certifications, the (proposed) EASA regs are on hold for at least 3 years.


Thanks Chris,

I spent several hours reading up on the situation yesterday and appreciate that the changes aren’t imminent. What I don’t want to do however is buy one now only to find that DJI release a certified version with ADS-B in four weeks time! Now I know that’s probably wishful thinking on my part, and that I could go on waiting forever, but with the situation seemingly so fluid at the moment I’m just not sure it’s the best time to buy.

Let’s face it, I don’t need a drone, I just quite fancy one! :sunglasses:

You’re probably in the wrong place then ;o)

Kidding aside, the more you read about ADS-B and how we use it in Europe makes you wonder if it really is that great a selling point, or needed at all.

I’m pretty sure that ADS-B isn’t mentioned in the reg changes, again I take it all with a pinch of salt until I’m told ‘this is what you must do’.

Agreed, I also saw no mention of it. It may or may not be a useful feature, but I guess we’ll only know for sure once it’s in widespread use. In any case it seems that the ability to disable it already exists.

TBH whilst I would quite like the feature, I’m more interested in the certification. As I understand it the C1 category that the Air 2 would fall into actually gives greater freedom than the current Drone Code permits, so it would be of benefit to own a certified unit. Two or three years sounds like a fair while but in reality it’ll fly by, and if I buy one now I’ll be stuck with A3 which to me sounds kind of limiting.

Having never owned a drone before I’ve had no need to look at the code until now. Many of the videos I’ve seen on YouTube appear to misrepresent what can be done legally with a drone in the UK, but having seen them I’d like to do what many of them are doing and fly much closer to buildings than is currently permitted.

Unless I’ve misunderstood the upcoming changes, having a C1 classification would actually permit this?

Hi Bodie and welcome to GADC.

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Thanks Dave :+1:

Hi Bodie,

Welcome from Hayling Island.

Don’t get too hung up about forthcoming regulations, they are proposals for implementation in a couple of years time - which is along time in the life of a drone.

If and when the regulations hit you will probbly be lusting after whatever the newest shiny is anyway. The aircraft you have will still be perfectly capable but, worst case, you will be restricted to fluing in the countryside rather than close to people or buildings - unless you have the permission of the person(s) or building owner(s) involved

So filming your wife and her horses won’t be a problem

As for ADS-B I’m not sure how good it will be although I’m lusting after a Pixhawk flightcontroller with it built in. Aircraft are supposed to fly at a minimum of 500 feet agl except for take-off and landing, UAV’s have a mandatory maximum height of 400 feet agl. The exceptions for aircraft tend to be military and SAR flights. I can certainly hear Chinnoks and coastguard Sikorskis before I can see them and take appropriate action.

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Thanks Robert,

I think I’ll give it a few weeks and see how I feel, I’m extremely impulsive and it’s bitten me more than once!

Another thing, is the maximum height of the DJI’s governed in software or is it possible to breach it? I only ask as I’ve seen UAV’s at ridiculous heights on YouTube… :thinking:

Mavic Mini is the way forward :slightly_smiling_face:

Yes, generally the maximum ceiling is 500m out of the box

It’s capped to 500m in the app and in the firmware.

On the Mavic Air 2? No, not yet. But it will in the future.


Well that’s what I was originally going for Chris, but I have a habit of buying things only to upgrade them a few months later. I would really like the follow-me function of the Air 2 so we can get footage of us riding together.

500 metres?

Surely if the cap is above the permitted height then it may as well not have one at all? That said, perhaps it’s to stop the idiots out there doing a 6K vertical range test for YouTube! :joy:

Welcome to the forum.

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Thanks Ned. :hugs:

It’s the old 200mph Ferrari scenario.

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Only the 200mph Ferrari isn’t capped to 120mph. :exploding_head:

Not yet

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Oh dear.

"All new cars would also be equipped with data loggers to track the system under recommendations from the ETSC."