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DJI mini crashed into river - lost

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milroger

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Hi folks - looking for advice.
Flew my mini for the first time proper last week in a large open area over a river. Took some shots of a boat I was on and tried to use the circle function. After flying for over a minute thirty next to me while I played with the settings I started the circle flight - this lasted about 10-15 seconds before the drone stopped all Rotors while in flight and plummeted into the river never to be seen again. DJI say:
we have finished the data analysis, and the result is as follows:

1. The aircraft was controlled by a pilot in QuickShot mode.
2. Flight Time T=01:43, Relative Height H=21.8 m, Distance to Home Point D=16.2 m, the flight record ended when the aircraft was circling around the subject;
3. RTH Location: 51.3033208, -0.5161278. The last point: 51.3034122, -0.5163083.

The record ended without any sign of abnormality, so we could not verify what happened afterwards.

I do t see how the flight ending at 20meters in the air can be called normal.

DJI are offering 30% off a new drone of the same model but I’m not sure I want another drone if they just stop for no reason. The drone only lasted for 5 flights totalling 16 minutes - hardly value for money. Seem to be a lot of similar issues when I search the internet. Is this quite a common issue and are DJI usually so quick to deny it’s an issue with the drone?
 

Dave Maine

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Battery failures can cause this kind of problem. All logging terminates when battery power goes away. Uploading the logs may allow someone with log experience to get further, but if it was a simple disconnect, the logs won’t have anything useful in them, they will just stop. If there was a slower battery problem, there may be some hints as to a bad cell or something along those lines.
 

StantonZ

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Battery failures can cause this kind of problem. All logging terminates when battery power goes away.
Agree to the point that I wish we could see battery age/cycle data for all such flight failures/crashes. The fact that is is a Mini (and not Mini 2) means the battery pack could have been almost 2 years old.
 

Meta4

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The record ended without any sign of abnormality, so we could not verify what happened afterwards.

I do t see how the flight ending at 20meters in the air can be called normal.
They weren't saying that the outcome was normal.
What they were saying was that the flight data didn't show anything abnormal, right up to the point where the data just stopped.
Seem to be a lot of similar issues when I search the internet. Is this quite a common issue
It's not a common issue.
There are a few million DJI drones out there and DJI outsell their nearest competitor by more than 7:1.
That means that even if there are issues with 1 in 1000, there could be still 20000 with issues.
You read accounts of flyer's problems and it seems like a lot, but it's nothing against the 1980000, that had no issue and are still flying happily.
and are DJI usually so quick to deny it’s an issue with the drone?
DJI have proved to be good at replacing drones where there is evidence that the issue was a DJI issue.
If you flew somewhere that you could recover the wreckage, they would have been able to study it and its onboard data recorder.
But given where you flew, that option was not possible.

 
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Capt KO

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I have refresh on my mini and use a recovery float when over water. Cheap insurance as I usually fly over water. Never needed either. Sorry for your loss
 
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milroger

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I have refresh on my mini and use a recovery float when over water. Cheap insurance as I usually fly over water. Never needed either. Sorry for your loss
Thanks for the reply. What is a recovery float and how does that work?
 

milroger

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Agree to the point that I wish we could see battery age/cycle data for all such flight failures/crashes. The fact that is is a Mini (and not Mini 2) means the battery pack could have been almost 2 years old.
So if I take them up on their offer and get a replacement mini, chances are the batteries will be old and I’ll have a similar issue? Would you recommend taking the chance?
 

StantonZ

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So if I take them up on their offer and get a replacement mini, chances are the batteries will be old and I’ll have a similar issue? Would you recommend taking the chance?
I would assume a "new" drone comes with "new" batteries, but not sure that's the real issue: do you want another drone or not (doesn't have to be a Mini)?
Would still like to know some data on the batteries, even if it's just manufacturing date (easy of you use AirData).
 

milroger

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This is a new drone - all be it an old model. I have looked at the two other batteries that came with the drone but there is no date of manufacture on them. Unfortunately DJI have only offered the discount on the same model drone so the risk is the replacement would be old stock, being obsolete. I’ll ask if they can supply new batteries if I agree to proceed. Thanks very much for your comments - this is all new to me ( but you probably guessed that ) best regards
 

milroger

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They weren't saying that the outcome was normal.
What they were saying was that the flight data didn't show anything abnormal, right up to the point where the data just stopped.

It's not a common issue.
There are a few million DJI drones out there and DJI outsell their nearest competitor by more than 7:1.
That means that even if there are issues with 1 in 1000, there could be still 20000 with issues.
You read accounts of flyer's problems and it seems like a lot, but it's nothing against the 1980000, that had no issue and are still flying happily.

DJI have proved to be good at replacing drones where there is evidence that the issue was a DJI issue.
If you flew somewhere that you could recover the wreckage, they would have been able to study it and its onboard data recorder.
But given where you flew, that option was not possible.
Thanks for all the comments - very useful. Seems DJI are pretty good normally so may well take them up on their offer. Best regards
 
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Capt KO

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Thanks for the reply. What is a recovery float and how does that work?
A GetterBack float. Small attaches easily to front arms without affecting flight. Float pops off with retrieval string when submerged. Supposedly, since I haven't needed yet. Gives me confidence...?😅
 

tlswift58

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Hi folks - looking for advice.
Flew my mini for the first time proper last week in a large open area over a river. Took some shots of a boat I was on and tried to use the circle function. After flying for over a minute thirty next to me while I played with the settings I started the circle flight - this lasted about 10-15 seconds before the drone stopped all Rotors while in flight and plummeted into the river never to be seen again. DJI say:
we have finished the data analysis, and the result is as follows:

1. The aircraft was controlled by a pilot in QuickShot mode.
2. Flight Time T=01:43, Relative Height H=21.8 m, Distance to Home Point D=16.2 m, the flight record ended when the aircraft was circling around the subject;
3. RTH Location: 51.3033208, -0.5161278. The last point: 51.3034122, -0.5163083.

The record ended without any sign of abnormality, so we could not verify what happened afterwards.

I do t see how the flight ending at 20meters in the air can be called normal.

DJI are offering 30% off a new drone of the same model but I’m not sure I want another drone if they just stop for no reason. The drone only lasted for 5 flights totalling 16 minutes - hardly value for money. Seem to be a lot of similar issues when I search the internet. Is this quite a common issue and are DJI usually so quick to deny it’s an issue with the drone?
While yes it was a very short flight - were the batteries at FULL charge or had you charged them days / weeks ago and then went out ot fly? The batteries WILL discharge over time and if they were low to begin with - you won't have much flying time. Yet, you should have gotten a low battery warning - if you had the volume up on your screen device.

Too many variables with so little info to go on. If you posted your data files here, some of the great data readers here could look and see as well.
 

Meta4

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While yes it was a very short flight - were the batteries at FULL charge or had you charged them days / weeks ago and then went out ot fly? The batteries WILL discharge over time and if they were low to begin with - you won't have much flying time. Yet, you should have gotten a low battery warning - if you had the volume up on your screen device.
You would expect that DJI's analysis would have noticed if the cell voltage was an issue.
 

tlswift58

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You would expect that DJI's analysis would have noticed if the cell voltage was an issue.
Well, we would expect more info from OP's - but that doesn't always come thru either. Did they provide ALL the info from DJI or just what they wanted to share? Now THAT should be the question!

Why not share the data files so folks like you can look at them to ascertain what happened as well?
 

Graham1

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I have refresh on my mini and use a recovery float when over water. Cheap insurance as I usually fly over water. Never needed either. Sorry for your loss
Hi Capt what is the recovery float you use over water please as I fly over it and I worry about it.
 

Rodbender

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Hi folks - looking for advice.
Flew my mini for the first time proper last week in a large open area over a river. Took some shots of a boat I was on and tried to use the circle function. After flying for over a minute thirty next to me while I played with the settings I started the circle flight - this lasted about 10-15 seconds before the drone stopped all Rotors while in flight and plummeted into the river never to be seen again. DJI say:
we have finished the data analysis, and the result is as follows:

1. The aircraft was controlled by a pilot in QuickShot mode.
2. Flight Time T=01:43, Relative Height H=21.8 m, Distance to Home Point D=16.2 m, the flight record ended when the aircraft was circling around the subject;
3. RTH Location: 51.3033208, -0.5161278. The last point: 51.3034122, -0.5163083.

The record ended without any sign of abnormality, so we could not verify what happened afterwards.

I do t see how the flight ending at 20meters in the air can be called normal.

DJI are offering 30% off a new drone of the same model but I’m not sure I want another drone if they just stop for no reason. The drone only lasted for 5 flights totalling 16 minutes - hardly value for money. Seem to be a lot of similar issues when I search the internet. Is this quite a common issue and are DJI usually so quick to deny it’s an issue with the drone?
DJI just offered me a new Mavic 2 air drone for 15% off. The drone flew into the water because of faulty sensors. The sensor said it was at 1 meter height when it was in the water. DJI said it was pilot error. I never touched the elevation control. DJI appears to be a 2nd rate company.
 

Rodbender

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They weren't saying that the outcome was normal.
What they were saying was that the flight data didn't show anything abnormal, right up to the point where the data just stopped.

It's not a common issue.
There are a few million DJI drones out there and DJI outsell their nearest competitor by more than 7:1.
That means that even if there are issues with 1 in 1000, there could be still 20000 with issues.
You read accounts of flyer's problems and it seems like a lot, but it's nothing against the 1980000, that had no issue and are still flying happily.

DJI have proved to be good at replacing drones where there is evidence that the issue was a DJI issue.
If you flew somewhere that you could recover the wreckage, they would have been able to study it and its onboard data recorder.
But given where you flew, that option was not possible.
My mavic 2 air flew into the water without any hand on the elevation control. When it was in the water the flight record said it was at 1 meter height. DJI says it is pilot error. Bottom line: the drone cannot tell its height when it is 1.5 meter above the water. They said that they would replace it for 15% discount. No thanks.
 

AZDave

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DJI just offered me a new Mavic 2 air drone for 15% off. The drone flew into the water because of faulty sensors. The sensor said it was at 1 meter height when it was in the water. DJI said it was pilot error. I never touched the elevation control. DJI appears to be a 2nd rate company.

Wow ... you were expecting to have 1 meter elevation resolution when flying over water??? GPS elevation is unreliable no matter who the manufacturer is, and optical sensors are going to have all kind of trouble dealing with water reflections. I think the simple fact is that you didn't understand the limits of your drone ... and that equates to pilot error.
 
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