Return to flight?

A busy year with a new job and unfortunately not much time to play with drones or create posts here.

Firstly my F55o: After experimenting with a tri-copter setup, I decided the efficiency cost was just too great. I tried various combinations of prop sizes, had a few failures and eventually rebuilt it back to a hex setup on an S550 frame. While it did fly, the extra weight of the G40 gimbal and Sony RX100III cut flight times down by around half! It also pushed the total weight of my craft just over the new 2kg limit for unlicensed commercial operation – which was a major goal for me and the main reason I tried the tri configuration.
I then had some random stability issues with the rebuilt S550 with it deciding to tilt 45 degrees and dive flat out toward the ground – or nearest tree, I’m still not sure if this was a flight controller issue or due to the extra weight of the gimbal causing a pendulum effect. I ran out of time, money and enthusiasm to continue trying to sort it out.

Until yesterday.

A mate (Regis) and I have been watching developments on the relatively new DJI Mavic in forums.
He’s decided to bite the bullet and get one, leaving his well loved Phantom3 looking for a new home – so I decided I would adopt it as an interim craft while I probably wait for V2 of the Mavic in a year or so.
SO, I should be back in the air very soon gathering more footage around Hobart and Tasmania.

Back to yesterday …

Regis and I took a short drive to the Utas soccer fields on Mt Nelson so he could take his P3 for a fly. The main fields were empty, but someone was busy using a theodolite and setting up reflective markers. Turns out it was some guy’s from the Uni, preparing to test their latest 3D mapping UAV! This thing weighs around 15KG, has 6 batteries, 3GPS receivers and was an amazing thing to witness lifting off the ground – surprisingly not much louder than the S550.
Here’s a link to the Uni project, though at the time of posting, there was no info provided on this particular drone.

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