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X8+ Pilot Roll Call

Discussion in 'X8+ Discussion' started by Ron Houde, Jan 16, 2016.

  1. Ron Houde

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    Who are the X8+ pilots in this forum?
    Were are you from? I live in Montreal, Canada
    How long have you had your X8+? I just got mine in January 2016
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? I fly a GoPro Hero3 on the Tarot 2 DOF gimbal
    Do you FPV? Yes, with the 3DR Liveview kit.
    Why did you by the X8+? It is an Open Source project and provides pretty decent payload and performance characteristics.
     
    etarran likes this.
  2. stew

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    Were are you from? I live in Kelowna, BC, Canada
    How long have you had your X8+? October, 2016
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? Fixed mount Sony A6000 for mapping
    Do you FPV? Custom FPV setup on 5.8 Ghz
    Why did you by the X8+? Ease of use for mapping with pixhawk in a mid size UAV package. Use it as a backup to my larger mapping platforms.
     
    Ron Houde likes this.
  3. Lorenzo R

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    Location:
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Were are you from? Santa Cruz, California, USA
    How long have you had your X8+? December 2015
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? GoPro 3 Black with 3DR Tarot 2D gimbal but I may change to the Feiyu 3D gimbal.
    Do you FPV? Yes, with the 3DR Liveview kit.
    Why did you by the X8+? Had a Phantom but wanted to learn Pixhawk and Mission Planner for mapping applications such as DroneDeploy and Pix4D. The clearance price was crazy($750 including gimbal, LiveView FPV and taxes) so I couldnt resist buying two of them. :)
     
    Ron Houde likes this.
  4. NightStorm

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    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Were are you from? Windham, New Hampshire USA
    How long have you had your X8+? I received mine in early January 2016
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? I fly a GoPro Hero3+ Black on a Zhiyun Z1 Tiny2 gimbal
    Do you FPV? I use a Blackperl monitor to watch the view through the GoPro
    Why did you by the X8+: Multiple factors:
    - I wanted something more failsafe than a quad. Single motor or prop. failure won't bring down the X8
    - I liked the fact that it is based around an open source controller
    - It struck me as well built
    - There was a great sale going on just prior to Christmas (I got the X8+ with monitor, video transmitter, spare frame kit, and an extra battery for somewhere between $800 and $900 US).
     
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  5. Ron Houde

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    I ran out of luck and 3D Robotics were out-of-stock on the X8+ when I came around to order mine. But I was impressed enough that I decided to get all the accessories at the discounted price and paid full price for the X8+ from a retailer.
     
  6. JCFlippen

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    I bought my X8+ RTF in the December sale with FPV kit and a spare frame. Very pleased with it. Have just fitted Tiny 2 gimbal/GoPro 4 - now waiting for weather to fly. I'm based in Wales Uk.
     
    Ron Houde likes this.
  7. rsimcox

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    Who are the X8+ pilots in this forum?
    Were are you from? I live in Somerville, TN
    How long have you had your X8+? I purchased mine in November of 2015
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? I use the Mapir Cameras with their flexible dual camera mount.
    Do you FPV? Yes, 3Dr Liveview Kit, but removed it because range was only 80 yards. No FPV now
    Why did you by the X8+? Higher payload ability and perfect for autonomy flight.

    I use mine primarily for mapping missions using Tower with the 10000mah battery which gives me 30 minute flight time at 71 meters altitude and speed of 5m/s. I can handle and operate in high winds up to 30 miles per hour with no noticeable effects.
     
    Ron Houde likes this.
  8. stew

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    No way your getting 30 minutes of flight time on an X8+. Especially with a payload. Sorry to call you our but simply not true
     
  9. rsimcox

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    Actually it no very difficult if you strip down the extra weight on the X8 and do not have FPV or powering a gimbal or camera. I have 6 batteries and all will give me 25 to 30 minute flight time depending on the wind conditions. I agree that if you are flying in 30 mph winds you will not get these results, but the biggest difference was in removing FPV weight and not having to power a gimbal and camera. My cameras run off of the internal battery. I am also only flying at 400 ft elevation and 40% to 60% humidity levels in 70 to 85 degree temperatures. Sorry this sounds so unlike to you, but sometime the true hurts!
     
  10. stew

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    Well good for you then. You are the only person in the world with a 25-30min flight time with an X8+. Especially while carrying a payload. What voltage do you land at?
     
  11. Douggieboy

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    I bought an x8+ with Pixhawk controller. My first drone was a Tali H500 which I've never flown, due to the myriad firmware problems, unreliable performance, and a broken gimbal (I bought it used, at a discounted price.) This one is now headed to eBay, or will sell to any pilot here who wants it, sans gimbal/camera, but with 4 lipo flight packs (one brand new in the box,) Devo f12e fpv transmitter with new 2200 mah battery, extra set of props, a spare motor, esc speed controller, compete screw set, six propeller guards, extra landing gear tubes, mounting sockets, shock absorbers, led arm covers-- $700 and I pay shipping.

    A few weeks ago I bought a Phantom 3 Pro that had been involved in a little mishap, and rebuilt it. It flies beautifully, and I love the dji Lightbridge fpv so much I got an air module, and plan to use it on the x8+. I really wish it could be possible to switch the dji 4K gimbal back and forth between the two drones, but it isn't a job that can be done in the field. This way, I can use the Phantom transmitter with both drones running Lightbridge. I have an extra camera but have to buy another gimbal and real landing gear-- 3dr's factory gear is a joke! Tarot makes some excellent retracts.

    I bought the x8+ back in May, was working hard on the Tali at that time-- which I decided not to keep. The Phantom 3 just came along a few weeks ago, and the rebuild was 3 days of intensely frustrating microsurgery, then the software nightmares began.
    I'm not sure how the Pixhawk controller will interface with dji Lightbridge. Any ideas are most welcome.
    Have a nice drone and a good night
    Douggieboy

    Adding location, Providence, RI
     
    #11 Douggieboy, Aug 11, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2016
    Ron Houde likes this.
  12. kkitchen

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    Who are the X8+ pilots in this forum?
    Were are you from? USA
    How long have you had your X8+? Jan 2016
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? Just a mobius
    Do you FPV? nope
    Why did you by the X8+? It is an Open Source project and provides pretty decent payload to deliver whiskey.
     
    Ron Houde likes this.
  13. rmills72

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    3dr x8m pilot here part 107.
    Grand Rapids, MI USA
    Purchased X8m in November 2015.
    Fly a Canon SX110, no gimbal
    No FPV (took it off as I rarely used it, and wanted the extra flight time from the reduced mass and draw on the flight battery)

    Purchased for aerial mapping and topography. Does a great job at it, though a little short in flight time. Average about 9-10 minutes tops on a calm day. Rock solid flight though! 3 flights today in 10mph winds. 8 minutes into the flight, voltages under load were about 14.5V. Turnigy Multistar 4s 10000mah 10c.

    My software of choice is Mission Planner and Pix4d. I like to be in total control of the flight parameters, estimation of flight time, and production of the final products. Everything I do is on a site coordinate base (arbitrary).
     
  14. NightStorm

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    Location:
    New Hampshire
    An update on my earlier post (I bought mine during the sell off 3DR was having a year ago just prior to Christmas 2015) ..

    Initially I was very uncomfortable flying the X8+, it just did not "feel right". It surged a lot (enough to create shakes in the video), would take off randomly when switched to loiter mode, crashed more than landed when "land" was activated (many lost props this way: every single one of my crashes occurred when activating "land"), and once went nose up and butt to the ground when I switched from one mode to another.

    I am not blaming the machine, a lot of this was my own inexperience esp. with the Pixhawk.

    Meanwhile I've done some reading over the summer, some experimenting, and a bit of upgrading. I built a better mount for the Tiny2 gimbal, upgraded the firmware, installed larger props for the uppers (these at reduced pitch), changed the receiver to the Frsky X4R, bound it to my Taranis transmitter and setup with the Craft And Theory Telemetry (am now running their 3.4-rc5 firmware). Some fun tinkering.

    Aside from these small hardware changes the biggest difference for me was learning about the Pixhawk "Autotune". After auto-tune it was night-n-day in feel of the craft, this went a long way toward making me more comfortable flying it.

    RMills72 mentioned some wind in the post above. Today it was very windy here in New Hampshire, gusts sufficient to make for a fun bit of practice in Stabilize mode. The gimbal does a pretty decent job keeping up up and down down and so that video hides a lot of what the craft was doing above it (however there is a brief section where I put the gimbal into heading lock and turned the craft around above it).
     
  15. etarran

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    Who are the X8+ pilots in this forum?
    Were are you from? Colorado
    How long have you had your X8+? Just picked up a X8+
    Do you fly a camera on your X8+? Which one? Which gimbal? I got one without a gimbal or camera. I have a GoPro 4 Black and I'm currently researching options for a gimbal to use with it. Right now I primarily do building inspections so I am looking at options for a thermal imaging camera. I think I'm going to get a Flir Duo. Any suggestions/advice/input is appreciated.
    Do you FPV? I didn't get the 3Dr Liveview Kit because of the concern of the short flight time and wanting to keep payload to a minimum. But I am considering getting the Liveview kit or something similar or custom - to at least have available. Again any input is appreciated.
    Why did you by the X8+? I have been interested in 3DR for a longtime - I almost pulled the trigger on a new X8 (and I was very close to buying a Solo) when they were still full price-yikes! I like pixhawk/open source and I think despite 3DR discontinuing manufacturing, the X8 (and even the Solo) can still be useful/productive aircraft.
    Hoping to learn from you guys. I have already done some searching and picked up some good info but, like I said, I am very interested in your experience/advice/suggestions with the X8, cameras, gimbals, FPV, batteries, etc. And, how can you increase flight time!
     
  16. Pushjerk

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    I'm from WA
    Not going to answer the rest of the above questions cause it's all N/A.

    I also took advantage of the 3DR liquidations in late 2015 - though the order I put in for the X8+ at $599 (I think) was never fulfilled, despite being *in stock* (long story of woe there for a lot of people)

    Anyway, picked up a DIY Y6 Kit for a minuscule $250, and enough parts to build an X8 with many spare parts no prob. This was my first time wandering into the world of multi-rotors after may years with fixed wing. I got hooked pretty fast.

    The Y6 is a tank and has seen may hours of flight, though the X8 parts remain just that, parts. Haven't gotten around to it.
    Had work in mind for these birds.

    May I ask the contributors to this thread, those that are "mapping" and doing "building inspections", "roof inspections,' etc, are you gentleman surveyors, contractors, building inspectors first who have adopted emerging drone technology? Are you licensed in your state for this type of work? If not, have you run into any complications with traditional surveyors, inspectors associations, state laws?

    I'm not the police here, nor do I hold any of the above qualifications - simply a soon-to-be-licensed unmanned aviator who is curious about the more technical niches of the commercial sUAS industry.
     
  17. Pushjerk

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    Regarding FPV gear:

    Background - my passion way before multi-rotors is fixed wing FPV. For the X8 Application, is it truly necessary?
    - For flying in general in the absence of a telemetry link, overlaying OSD data in your video feed is essential to have that realtime critical flight data. So yes.
    - For Aerial Photography and Videography, absolutely - you gotta frame your shot. At the very least you need to video out of you primary camera - I do this with the GoPro on the Y6, eliminating an FPV Cam.
    - For Mapping/Surveying/inspection, do you really need that realtime view? - perhaps for situational awareness, perhaps for an operator, a partner, or a client who needs/wants to observe in real time (perhaps more applicable in the inspection realms - roofs, cell towers, etc.)
    - If the latter is the case, the analog TV transmitters that are readily available do not provide the resolution that would satisfy the needs of an onlooker - would not provide the level of detail to make decisions. HD video systems are beginning to hit the market, but are expensive, I don't know the facts here but could be heavy and use more power.

    If a simple analog transmitter works for you just for that situational awareness, or for framing a shot, then there are tons of options out there for low cost, low weight, and low power analog video transmitters on 900-1300MHZ, 2.4 GHz, 3.3GHz and 5.8GHz. (Especially with the proliferation of Drone racing in the mini 250mm and below classes) as well as tiny, light, low power cams made with plastic housings.

    Let's just assume you are flying on 2.4 RC.

    This little guy weighs only 7.5g and 25mW. A high gain antenna on the receiving end would ensure plenty of range for a Copter

    They get even smaller, but this little guy is a good option for a cam, weighs only 12g.

    Moreover, the vTX above runs off of anything from a 2S to 5S battery, and further supplies a 5V output to power the Cam above, greatly simplifying wiring, alleviating the need for any power regulators.

    This is only an example, one product from one retailer - Readymade RC, GetFPV, even Hobbyking, and any of the retailers who have jumped on the FPV bandwagon in recent years will get you sorted for your FPV needs.

    So there ya go.
     
    etarran likes this.
  18. Douggieboy

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    As my drone army increases in size and complexity, the x8+ is still sitting upside down in my living room, Pixhawk controller, 3 lipo flight packs, and DJI’s lightbridge taking up the same space/tying up the same money all these things were the better part of a year ago.

    I rebuilt the P3Pro again after a small tree branch mishap last fall, all is in good order but for DJI building a proprietary SHAFT into their latest firmware, so that only DJI OEM branded batteries work in this drone. Aftermarket batteries, which have always worked perfectly for me, now return error messages and prevent flight. Litchi is ambiguous~~ I order OEM batteries, and Ebay/Amazon yank the listings, boot the sellers, and I end up with a refund.
    Before taking this bird up again, I’m going to try to figure out what’s going on with Litchi, and if that doesn’t work, I’ll just reformat the 16gig nano chip, and backdate the firmware a year or so. This should take care of it. If not, it’s headed to Ebay.

    Finances improved a bit over the holidays, so I bought a Phantom 4, a Solo package from Best Buy, and a Yuneec Q500 package with handheld stabilizer.

    My heart has been long set on integrating Pixhawk with Lightbridge Air module for the x8+, though if this isn’t going to work, that little DJI maesterwerk still commands $400 or more on Ebay/Amazon, and if I can’t use on any of the drones I don’t have up and running, that’s exactly where it’s going to go. I now have 2 DJI transceivers, stock P3P and P4 [not Pro.] These manufacturers and engineers don’t co-operate with each other at all. They could improve each others’ technologies exponentially, but money talks and those folks take the shame paths of corporate greed. Everybody else trudges along in sorrow....

    This is a real disgrace, most primarily orchestrated by Chinese designers, manufacturers, and exporters, but also tolerated by importers and subsidiaries of these garbage mills who transform cheap sweatshop and slave labor of junk, into immense profits for one and all, save the American consumer, who ends up with crap, throw-away merchandise, designed not to be repaired, but trashed at the slightest insult to its auto-destruct, eggshell infrastructure.

    I bought a wrecked P3P last spring for $180, and within a few weeks/minimal replacement parts, had it flying beautifully. Halves of the two part plastishell body were secured by graduatingly smaller metric hex key bolts, that threaded into equally tiny metal anchors, molded in throughout both segments of this extremely brittle shell. Correct closure is further complicated by means of a series of interconnectedly alternating juxtaposed plastic clips running about the entire airframe. Get one clip out of alignment, and it snaps off. Measurement of the smallest metric screws needed to complete the rebuild to factory specs came in at 50 microns. Titanium shaft drill bits under 400x microscope enabled me to take things apart, and put them back together. On occasion, the most difficult operations required the use of laser technologies......
    No horn blower here, but I have access to equipment and knowledge of its proper use to accomplish a great many things. DJI’s Phantom 3 is a superb, user friendly operational airborne photography platform-- and I’ll go one step further to say that it’s very forgiving of beginners’ and experts’ errors alike.

    The importers and marketers of the Phantom 3 have implemented its design and manufacture to be a simple, throw-away product, appealing to a large, convenience addicted American consumer base. OK~~ that concept was great for Dixie cups, flushable diapers, maybe still even Slinky toys, but this is 2017~~ and this cheaply conceived toy, albeit with excellent electronics [most probably pilfered, (sic,)]-- has a price tag just now going below $1,000 US.

    $1,000/month is more than the average family of four has to live on in mainstream China, this with 2 adults working 80 hours a week, in sweat shops the US department of Labor would have shut down a century ago.
    Slave labor in China, while slowly decreasing, is just that:~~ work and live; refuse or become unable to work, you die.
    That’s why the country calls itself, “The People’s Republic of China.”

    I’m set employed now~~ no more answering to clocks, nasty and overbearing bosses...... plenty of time for the drones, and airplanes too.....
    One great girlfriend, whose name is Diane, with one n; my sister has two.....

    Back to the real matter at hand:-----
    3dr x8+ octocopter, Pixhawk controller, DJI Lightbridge Air module.... I have both P3P and P4 Lightbridge transceivers to make this work, also Devo f12e
    ground station, st-10 and st-16--- please help here... from this thread, I just want to know how to get the x+ up and flying. I’ll decide about its gimbal and camera later.......

    Thank you, God bless America, save us everyone, and please do whatever you can to get the bigot clown Donald Trump OUT of the White House......