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RC Plane Chase Using a Drone

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  • RC Plane Chase Using a Drone

    Besides FliteTest and vendors, I don't see too many videos of RC plane chase using drones. But I think our planes are so beautiful in the air and deserve to be seen in all their glory close-up in their element, and the best way to do it is with a drone! So share your RC plane chase videos here!

    I will start off. I admit race/free style quads are best suited for the job. But at the moment, all I have is a DJI Mavic Pro, so I make do the best I can. The following was shot using Mavic Pro with Goggles RE with head tracking enabled.

    YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/motionsic
    Currently Flying: Sebart PC-21, Taft Cobra, 3DHS Osiris 60, CZ Splendor, FMS PC-21(FPV), FMS BF-109 1400mm, DJI Mavic Pro (FPV plane chase), FMS Fox Glider 2.32m, Flyzone Seawind
    RC Home Base: Bob Swenson Memorial Field - Orange County Modeler's Assoc. Float Plane Base: Huckleberry Pond - Anaheim Model Airplane Club

  • #2
    I'm kinda 50/50 on this, as I seen flite test crack up a few planes as well as other people trying to film their planes with drones. I mean if both pilots understand, and are ok with the risk involved, all good, but it's not something I'm comfortable with no mater the skill of the other pilot.

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    • #3
      You are right to be cautious. The Flite Test guys has an audience to entertain and often opt for dramatic/comedic effect of close miss or crash over prudence to get views. Also since most of what they fly are given to them as review items, they don’t suffer the sting of a crash like us. The average RC flyer with hard earned dollars invested in their equipments should approach formation by paying attention to safety first. Like the BlueAngels or Thunderbirds, when first starting out to practice formations, they are very far apart from each other and only after countless practices of the same routines do they get to as close a formation as we see them perform.

      I would offer some tips for anyone starting out with formations:
      1. Find a very smooth stick with good eye sight that has a passion for flying formation as flight lead.

      2. He needs to also be patient flying mundane maneuvers like race track patterns over and over until chase plane can get familiar with sight picture of Airplane in the air and close the formation.

      3. Flight lead need to clearly communicate what moves he will do next with chase. So chase can anticipate and make appropriate moves to stay in formation and not rely only on reaction to what he sees on screen.

      4. practice, practice, practice! It takes time for lead and chase pilots to develop a feel for each other’s flying. Do not expect to have close formation shots on the first few flight.

      Hope this helps for someone getting into formation flying. It requires precision in flying and results in very challenging and rewarding experience. When done well, the flights are exhilarating and videos are awesome. Here’s a great example:
       
      YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/motionsic
      Currently Flying: Sebart PC-21, Taft Cobra, 3DHS Osiris 60, CZ Splendor, FMS PC-21(FPV), FMS BF-109 1400mm, DJI Mavic Pro (FPV plane chase), FMS Fox Glider 2.32m, Flyzone Seawind
      RC Home Base: Bob Swenson Memorial Field - Orange County Modeler's Assoc. Float Plane Base: Huckleberry Pond - Anaheim Model Airplane Club

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      • #4
        I've done a few videos this way, and it works quite well with one exception. The main issue I've had is the speed differential. Almost always, even a slow flying airplane will outrun an AP quad. A race quad like Flite Test uses would work much better, but you'll need a very skilled pilot and some specialized gear. Here's what I've come up with working with my friend to get air to air from his Phantom 3:

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        • #5
          F106,

          Cool videos with very cinematic music. You are right about the speed difference between typical plane and Aerial Photography drone. So here are a couple more tips to setup for success:

          5. Ideal lead plane should be large, bright scheme (large contrast with back ground), and can fly slowly - best flown with partial flaps to lower stall speed

          6. Fly the AP drone inside the turns of lead plane to keep pace even while flying slower....
           
          YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/motionsic
          Currently Flying: Sebart PC-21, Taft Cobra, 3DHS Osiris 60, CZ Splendor, FMS PC-21(FPV), FMS BF-109 1400mm, DJI Mavic Pro (FPV plane chase), FMS Fox Glider 2.32m, Flyzone Seawind
          RC Home Base: Bob Swenson Memorial Field - Orange County Modeler's Assoc. Float Plane Base: Huckleberry Pond - Anaheim Model Airplane Club

          Comment


          • #6
            Hey Deltadart, I've been to that field before, long ago I came home on r&r from Iraq and had a twin edf F14 I had shipped to my friends house there, and we tried to fly it at the field there, but was severely underpowered and crashed. I thought it was a nice field to fly at for sure. That was pretty much when I ended my love for edf planes as well.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by rifleman_btx View Post
              Hey Deltadart, I've been to that field before, long ago I came home on r&r from Iraq and had a twin edf F14 I had shipped to my friends house there, and we tried to fly it at the field there, but was severely underpowered and crashed. I thought it was a nice field to fly at for sure. That was pretty much when I ended my love for edf planes as well.
              That’s awesome rifleman, you are welcome back here anytime you are in the area! Sorry to hear about the 14 though. As for Edfs, they have come a looong way in the last couple of years, ever since Motion got involved. Might need to get you on the sticks of the F-86 or A-10.

              Comment


              • #8
                I would love a good A10

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