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Buying used (like new) Mavic Air - what to check?

Joined
Jul 25, 2018
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#1
Hey guys,

I used to fly P2Vision four years ago, sold it and bought Phantom 4. Flew it for two years and also sold - too bulky to travel and hike with... Now I'm looking to buy Mavic Air. Craigslist seller says they flew it for few minutes only. Like new condition etc. I'll have a chance to test flight it and take couple photos and videos, but will not be able to do a lot of testing. As this is new machine for me, what do you recommend to check first? Aside from obvious cracks and scratches...

Thanks!
 

macoman

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#3
Make sure he show you the screen while the machine is in the air, hovering. Test the stability and see if there is any warning on. You don't want to buy something with a malfunction on.
 

CanadaDrone

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#7
The hardest part for me would be verifying without a doubt that all the batteries have been treated properly and never abused - especially if he has only used it for a few minutes and the batteries may have been sitting for a long time. In fact that would probably prevent me from ever even considering a used drone. The other thing you will never know is how the gimbal has been treated, even if it's working at the time of purchase. Too risky for me, but I am super an@l about my gear.

How much cheaper is it than new? If it's just a little bit IMO it's not worth it and I would definitely just buy a new one but YMMV there. If it's dramatically cheaper than new and the seller is claiming it's essentially new, that is suspicious. Also note the warranty 'clock' starts when the previous owner registered the drone, and you need the original bill of sale for DJI to help you down the road, so make sure you get that from him if you go through with it. I would also want to see photos and video footage from it to make sure there were no lens issues, etc. And make sure the micro SD card goes in/out of the slot properly and the spring mechanism isn't broken there.
 
Joined
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#9
The hardest part for me would be verifying without a doubt that all the batteries have been treated properly and never abused - especially if he has only used it for a few minutes and the batteries may have been sitting for a long time. In fact that would probably prevent me from ever even considering a used drone. The other thing you will never know is how the gimbal has been treated, even if it's working at the time of purchase. Too risky for me, but I am super an@l about my gear.

How much cheaper is it than new? If it's just a little bit IMO it's not worth it and I would definitely just buy a new one but YMMV there. If it's dramatically cheaper than new and the seller is claiming it's essentially new, that is suspicious. Also note the warranty 'clock' starts when the previous owner registered the drone, and you need the original bill of sale for DJI to help you down the road, so make sure you get that from him if you go through with it. I would also want to see photos and video footage from it to make sure there were no lens issues, etc. And make sure the micro SD card goes in/out of the slot properly and the spring mechanism isn't broken there.
Wow, thanks CanadaDrone for your advice! There is only one battery included in sale and it has 2 cycles. The guy bought it as a second backup unit for his travel. We chatted and he knows what he's doing and I don't think he even flew this MA with SD card inserted. I checked - it works. The battery issue should be prevented by DJI smart discharge function, shouldn't it? It was almost $300 Canadian dollars cheaper than the new one, especially counting Ontario HST. He provided original receipt - drone bought in April 2018, so there are still about 8 month warranty left on it. I tested few things after I got it home - seems to be OK. Gimbal is working ok as well. I still need to fiddle with photo/video settings to get them to my liking and to examine the footage.

Excited to fly it. :)))
 
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mad monkey

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#10
Wow, thanks CanadaDrone for your advice! There is only one battery included in sale and it has 2 cycles. The guy bought it as a second backup unit for his travel. We chatted and he knows what he's doing and I don't think he even flew this MA with SD card inserted. I checked - it works. The battery issue should be prevented by DJI smart discharge function, shouldn't it? It was almost $300 Canadian dollars cheaper than the new one, especially counting Ontario HST. He provided original receipt - drone bought in April 2018, so there are still about 8 month warranty left on it. I tested few things after I got it home - seems to be OK. Gimbal is working ok as well. I still need to fiddle with photo/video settings to get them to my liking and to examine the footage.

Excited to fly it. :)))
Where are you located?? Was it a. Kijiji deal?
 
Joined
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#15
I did fly more because better value.
Then of course I've spent a ton more than anything lol
Done that with P4: two extra batteries, nice backpack, 6 polarpro filters, HDMI module for remote... Ended up not using drone for 2-4 months stretches :((( to heavy to carry, too bulky to travel with, to much time to setup for flight... Sold all that 10 days ago. Bought MA today. Let's see how it goes... :)
 
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mad monkey

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#16
I put a caribeaner on my Ma's little hard case so I can clip it to things. Such a sweet drone.

I store it in a big waterproof case I made from Canadian Tire But it's easy to toss a few pieces in a bag if need be
 

CanadaDrone

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#17
Wow, thanks CanadaDrone for your advice! There is only one battery included in sale and it has 2 cycles. The guy bought it as a second backup unit for his travel. We chatted and he knows what he's doing and I don't think he even flew this MA with SD card inserted. I checked - it works. The battery issue should be prevented by DJI smart discharge function, shouldn't it? It was almost $300 Canadian dollars cheaper than the new one, especially counting Ontario HST. He provided original receipt - drone bought in April 2018, so there are still about 8 month warranty left on it. I tested few things after I got it home - seems to be OK. Gimbal is working ok as well. I still need to fiddle with photo/video settings to get them to my liking and to examine the footage.

Excited to fly it. :)))
You're welcome.

No the automatic discharge function isn't a complete fail-safe, every 3 months maximum the batteries still need to be cycled, and then reduced back to 40-60% for storage. This person's drone may not even be that old though. Storing them at low or zero charge especially for extended periods of time is very, very bad for them. If charged, after 10 days the battery automatically discharges to an appropriate long term storage level however it can't maintain that charge forever (hence the 3 month maximum period in between cycles).

Sounds like you did your due diligence and got a decent discount, congrats on the purchase and enjoy your new drone!
 

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