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Compass Calibration, A Complete Primer

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by ianwood, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. Busyone

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    I live on an iron boat. Calibrate isnt possible. Is calibration a must when i start in atti mode?
     
  2. Mike Drone7

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    @ianwood
    Hello Ian! I have a P2V that I added a Rotor Pixel gimbal to and have a really hard time calibrating the compass as the gimbal tends to quiver a bit in the nose down part of the compass dance. After a dozen tries I end up powering down the P2V unplug the gimbal do the dance and I have no problems calibrating the compass. I power down plug back in the gimbal and power up again and then fly. I have never had any problems with control of the P2V but after reading your post it has me wondering if I am setting myself up for a potential problem:eek:. Thanks in advance for your response;)
     
  3. sonof40

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    I see this is an old thread but it's the closest I can find to my problem.
    After many compass calibrations I still get a "?" showing on my App page.
    So apparently my calibration is not working. Evidenced by erratic flying and crashing.
    I'n a nube so I must be doing something wrong.
     
  4. Buk

    Buk

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    Which Phantom, what version of firmware, what app, what version?

    More importantly, what are your LEDs doing when placed in calibration mode, what do they do after your first revolution and after pointing down and rotating what do the LEDs do?
     
  5. sonof40

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    Thanks for the reply,

    P3A
    1.4.10 firmware
    remote 1.4.30
    DJI GO 2.4.0 App for Andriod Tab 4

    After pressing "Calibrate"
    steady yellow
    rotate
    steady green
    rotate single blinking green

    Pressing yellow dot with "?" opens a message to calibrate
     

    Attached Files:

  6. Odd Duck Out

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    • I :-! Sees
     
  7. sonof40

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    Thanks for the input. I have actually done all of it about three times. I'll try it again though, maybe I missed something. I still show that "?" in the yellow circle. It never goes away. Does that in fact indicate a compass problem?
    Any info on degausing?
     
    #47 sonof40, Nov 4, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2015
  8. sonof40

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    Thanks for the input. I have actually done all of it about three times. I'll try it again though, maybe I missed something. I still show that "?" in the yellow circle. It never goes away. Does that in fact indicate a compass problem?
    Any info on degausing?
     
  9. Buk

    Buk

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    I'm not familiar with android messages, but if the screen says "Normal" and your LEDs blink the correct sequences. I would think you are good to go.

    The concern would be where are your trying to calibrate your compass? Over some concrete with a mass of rebar embedded, over some buried electrical lines, or near some other metal structure. If you haven't already, find a nice open grassy area with little to no chance of metal structures causing your compass failure.
     
  10. Stile2112

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    It's not rare at all and is actually quite common. Black sand as it is called, is just below the surface of the sand. I've been gold mining as a hobbyist for 35+ years. Been to beaches up and down the West and East coast.. even the Gulf. Every beach had black sand in it. Some in greater concentrates then others. In the early years, detectors would scream on beaches. With advances in technology, we can "notch out" the iron signals.

    Now the question becomes... is passive technology effected by iron on the beach? Since you are calibrating above the ground by a few feet, I would think not.... But, I wouldn't chance it with my $1300.00 quad.
     
    ianwood likes this.
  11. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler

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    That's possible but it is uncommon. I would want to confirm that no metal is anywhere near your calibration area first. Put the bird on some cardboard, then nothing else man made for 15ft in all directions including up and down and on your person. If you have metal anywhere from surgery, get someone else to turn it.

    Make sure when you calibrate, the motion is smooth and even and the orientation of the bird is consistent in the non-spinning axes.
     
  12. sonof40

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    I have tried the middle of an empty 1000 acre tomato crop field in the middle of the San Joaquin Valley, CA with no overhead phone or power lines in site.

    But

    I never considered trying my iphone instead of the Andriod. Now the yellow dot is gone, did a test flight for 10 minutes and no problems so far YEAH!
    Thank you Buk!
     
  13. CabinP3

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    Ianwood, thanks for the great info... it is nice to hear from an expert. Do the "Image Transmission Settings" have any impact or relationship on the compass. I know this may sound stupid, but yesterday I had a major compass error after a perfect compass calibration 150 miles form the last calibration. The one thing I did not do was change my custom "Image Transmission Setting" and after landing I checked it and it was way out of whack... set on a channel with lots of interference. Have not have a chance to fly since.
     
  14. Dima

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    Why can't calibrate on asphalt?
     
  15. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    Almost certainly this would have no impact at all on compass.
    I can't tell from here with no knowledge about where you calibrated but I'd guess the most likely explanation is that your perfect calibration was in an imperfect location.
    It's most important that there's no iron or steel in the vicinity, including buried pipes or reinforcing steel.
     
  16. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

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    You can .. as long as it isn't a layer of asphalt on concrete like maybe a parking structure etc or asphalt with buried pipes, cables etc.
    Most asphalt roadways, parking lots etc will not have these potential issues but always be on the lookout
     
  17. Danielmexortega

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    great post thank you
     
  18. Triakis

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    Smartphones have sensitive flux sensors and most compass apps will reveal fields strong enough to cause problems. Tiny speakers often have neodymium magnets in them and these will definitely cause issues, etc. If the compass on your phone shows interference or goes haywire your phantom probably will too!

    Just remember to keep the phone away while doing the calibration! ;)
     
    meissner58 likes this.
  19. SkyPhantom

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    Every time I do the startup on all the pieces, and hit the camera selection on the iPad screen the app opens up and the calibrate selector opens up and asks the Yes/No question. Does that not mean that the drone compass needs to be calibrate, or are you saying that I should say no unless I am far from the last flight??
     
  20. msinger

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    Is this still relevant? It seems the average mod value for the Phantom 3 is around 1,500 (give or take a bit).
     
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