Second Flight, drone hits grass, demons on the loose

Flushed with success from mission one, I duck out of work again at lunch and prepare to not be so timid with the controls for flight 2.
Should I be adding this to the first post or is a second one ok?

Was that laughter from the shadowy corner? Na!
Drone charged and a change of scene trying to keep the demons of failed flight off my back but did not recon on the demon of over confidence.
This demon was stalking me last night as I took in tips on flying for effect and getting great shots. “The drone practically flies its self right!”, I thought.
Oh dear - the ground was way rougher and overgrown and getting a flat landing pad was a little awkward but the box sufficed.

I’m sure I heard a chuckle behind me.

I looked all around for dangers, trees yep, long grass, yep, bushes yep, wires, nope, fences, nope.

Well good enough, I have plenty of room….

Startup went smoothly, even the dance of the calibration Gods went off without incident and the drone was in the air humming in front of me having blown away the box packaging that I now had to go collect. - great.

So gently forward.

Arrgh! It was facing me this time, making me limbo out of the way. Still no one around, phew!

Swooping back and forward all good, flying close to the ground - thump. The demon of failed flights grabbed the drone with a lump of grass, silencing it.

The collection walk of shame was trudged, my ego dented and snickering from the tree line.

I sighed and returned to the start still not cowed by the event.

I tried again and this time cut some grass but the demon of failed flights ws not quick enough and the drone recovered not one but twice from his vegatative grasp.

The drone had a tendency to drift sideways and I had to correct for it. I still tried some circling moves and was perfect… around a completely uninteresting patch of grass and not my intended target. I needed practice, lots and lots of practice.

I stood there knowing what I needed to do, I was going to have to go higher. Checking the return to home was set at minimum distance and height. I moved the drone upwards, without issue. What a surprise.

I turned and lowered the camera to see me and moved the drone to nearly over me. I looked up and for a second could not see the drone!

It was there, just had to crane my neck further back to see it. My first positional mistake between drone and camera view. A very useful mini lesson learnt.

It was that easy to lose position. I dropped down and missed myself by many feet, the drone bobbing over the grass.

After recording a video and again failing to take a picture (that demon is the strong one again) I changed the control mode to mode 1 and had another go.

I stepped out of the way of the drone taking off - I did not need to be quite so close to it! And a terrible smell drifted up from the ground. I looked down and a dead bird’s corpse was lurking in the grass. I moved my position and unexpected hazard.

For some things it was easier but others it was harder. I was going to have to make a choice and stick with it. What about mode 3 or 4…. Na pick 1 or 2 and stick with that.

I tried following a foot path and was very quickly wavering wildly to keep in line with it getting perilously close to a bush, my initial thoughts were that the controls were overly sensitive as joysticks can be in computer games, it can’t be my lack of experience. Uh hu, right I said to myself!

I stopped the flight as the battery was getting low and shook hands with the Imp of little things not told about right at the beginning, that are soon corrected for after the first initial flights.

I nodded to the demon of failed flights, the score was 2,1 to him and we arranged to meet again for round 3. He walked off with the demon of over confidence sticking his tongue out at me as they disappeared back to their dimension.



Not good with acronyms.???

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An artist on a par with @macspite :clap:


Don’t drag me into this Karl just because my aircraft have occasionally had a brush with death or drowning :slight_smile: . It’s great that Kaylee can document her initial problems with wry humour. Though I’m not sure the area chosen for training flights was the best possible environment.

There are a couple of YouTube videos I recommend for initial training - boring wee exercises that will give you a good grounding in control. And remember, when it all goes Pete Tong, take your hands off the controls, the aircraft will be stationary and you will have time to draw a breath and think :slight_smile:


Thanks. I will watch.
I think I already got one of them. The move 3 meters left and land then right and land, then a square… etc.
Really good stuff.


Rotting birds nearby always spell doom … a clove of garlic taped to the left landing leg sorts that one.

An excellent piece of advice Rob @macspite
This should be included in the instruction leaflet in all DJI drones IMHO.

Great write up, nice bit of humour.
First tip, as the majority of drone pilots in the uk use mode 2 I would try to stick with that as muscle memory plays a major role in flying. (You never know when you may be flying someone else’s drone.)
Second try to fly in decent light until you have more confidence.
Third always try to take off and land with the aircraft facing away from you, that way if things do go a bit pair shaped natural instinct will be you friend as you panic, so you won’t fly into yourself or limbo out of the way.
Welcome and safe flying.

Had to Google a Deerc DE25 to find out it’s a rebadged Holystone.:grin:


Ahh…I finally understand why this phrase means “bad”. :wink: :grin:


Thanks for the reply.
I have a lot of built up muscle memory from FPS games (not Fortnight) on mode and keyboard, we are talking multiple decades here. So I’m not sure yet.
However theft makes me, mode 3 I think? All move on the left hand and turning on the right.
Mind you add in the mix of flight Sims and should down be up. Hmmm I think I’m one thinking this um… right…,
Right, ok, I’m back.

I’m still playing and the drone was cheap(relatively)

I’ve watched a lot of drone crash videos, then trees sure hate drones!

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I’m firmly mode 3 now. I did experiment in the early days but, for the same reason as you, I ended up with mode 3. So no one can fly my drones and I can’t fly anyone else’s, it’s not a big deal. The biggest pain was having to dick about with my transmitter when I started FPV. :grin:


I’ve been playing FPS for many years but still fly mode 2. Mode is a personal choice but if you’re planning on attending meets and if you want to fly other people’s setups at the meets then you’d be better learning mode 2 as it’s the most popular.

That being said it’s all about comfort, fly whatever feels better for YOU at the end of the day YOU’RE going to be the one who flies your quad the most so get comfortable with it.

I fly both FPV and Camera quads and the controls are completely different between the 2. Camera drones are easy as they practically fly themselves you just push them around the sky with the sticks. FPV on the other hand if you take your hands off the sticks chances are it’s going to crash. But they are built to take a beating so it doesn’t matter so much.

You’ll get the hang of it soon enough but I do agree with you, you are definitely over thinking it. :+1:t2:

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Things I found useful when just starting out.

  1. Height is your friend. Gives you more time before the drone meets the floor in an unfriendly manner! Also keeps away from ground effect, and makes the drone easier to fly.
  2. Practice, practice, practice.
  3. Don’t look at the phone/tablet. Keep your eyes on the drone at all times.
  4. Did I mention practice?
  5. Always start off with the nose pointing away from you, that way, right is right, left is left, forwards is forwards etc. When you’ve got that to a T, try nose in, but not before.
  6. Try Mode 2 again, if you get a problem and you need some help off another flyer, you’re going to have another problem in that nobody will be able to fly your drone.
  7. Did I mention practice?
  8. Don’t fly the drone too close to yourself, you’ll be too worried about hitting yourself with the bloody thing.
  9. Repeat numbers 2, 4 and 7
  10. Enjoy yourself.



I used to race model cars all over Europe and the UK👍

When I started I inherited a 6 channel Sanwa handset which had a ratcheted lever on the left stick (which most used for throttle😉) I used the right stick for throttle and the left for steering I can tell you I won races because others were distracted by my “strange” settings😎

You do what suits you, I fly on my own as I like it that way✅stay safe fly safe😎


I am going to try mode 2 again as I seem to be just as awarkward, now, with either.
I think I have confused my brain and need to unlearn and relearn.

I, today switched on headless mode and got really confused. maybe this is really for when its a dot in the sky or I started with headless mode?
Thanks for the reply


I wouldn’t use headless mode.
Once you get really confident, and you have followed 2,4 and 7 from above. Something else to practice is finding which way you drone is pointing from which way it moves when you move the sticks.