New to surveying

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Hi All

I am new to surveying and i have currently set myself up using a Geoexplorer GNSS Rover to gather my data.

While i was being trained on this i was informed that i could purchase a standard enough drone to carry out mapping which i could then import through software like Metashape into ACAD.

I am just looking for any info or opinions available as i am going to start heading down this road and would like the journey to be as productive as possible for me.

Thank You
 

Meta4

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While i was being trained on this i was informed that i could purchase a standard enough drone to carry out mapping which i could then import through software like Metashape into ACAD
The Phantom 4 pro is probably the best mapping drone out there, easy to fly, great camera and very reliable.
Dronedeploy is very good for flying mapping missions and if you use Metashape, you won't have to pay for processing.
 
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Hi Meta4

Thank you for the above i am not planning to use Metashape due to the cost of the software but this is the only software i am aware of for processing and mapping.

I am 100% going to need to process and at present i am using Trimble Business Center for this.

Will TBC work with drones ?

Also yes from research i am finding the Phantom 4 Pro is the drone of choice.
 
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Hi Meta4

Thank you for the above i am not planning to use Metashape due to the cost of the software but this is the only software i am aware of for processing and mapping.

I am 100% going to need to process and at present i am using Trimble Business Center for this.

Will TBC work with drones ?

Also yes from research i am finding the Phantom 4 Pro is the drone of choice.
You can also consider Pix4D. They have an offline version. It is expensive though. You will find that most of these softwares are in the $3,000 USD range. You can also try Maps Made Easy. You pay per survey. For a starting company, it could be viable until you aquire enough funds to pay for other software.
 
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Ansia

Thank you much appreciate the info.

I think you are correct that the pay per survey option would be best to start with.

Would you recommend purchasing a drone and just jumping straight in and letting it all teeth out along the way ?
 
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Ansia

Thank you much appreciate the info.

I think you are correct that the pay per survey option would be best to start with.

Would you recommend purchasing a drone and just jumping straight in and letting it all teeth out along the way ?
It depends on your current budget and how much you are going to earn from it. If you can afford a $1k+ drone right now (you have to consider that things start really slow in the beginning) and hold out for a while, then buy one. If not, how were you thinking of doing the surveying? The old fashion way? 360 camera?
 
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Ansia

I am very green to the drone side of things but I am currently surveying with a GPS Rover and it is mainly taking contours/spot heights i was hoping to achieve some time savings on site with the drone.

I have work on that would warrant surveying with the drone and it would just improve my current surveys if i was to be set up with the drone.

I am mainly worried that if i go through with purchasing a drone it may be no use to me without spending another couple of thousand on software and so on.
 
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Another specific drone for surveying is the phantom 4 RTK. A little more expensive...
 
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Another specific drone for surveying is the phantom 4 RTK. A little more expensive...
At a quick glance its looking to be around double the price of the Pro 4.

This might be the one for when i am fully set up but at present the pro 4 looks to be the one to get started due to the financial viability.

Damien
 
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The 4 Pro does the job well. The RTK is more precise though. If your interest is doing countours and such, the Pro should work just fine. The app for surveying is free on any mobile device. What you have to pay is the software to process the images and create the contours and such. I have gotten contours done by a professional and then compared them to the drone's. They are identical. The only problem with the drone, is that you must know the height of one of the contours to adjust the rest. If not, it will give you negative numbers and adjust accordingly.
 
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The 4 Pro does the job well. The RTK is more precise though. If your interest is doing countours and such, the Pro should work just fine. The app for surveying is free on any mobile device. What you have to pay is the software to process the images and create the contours and such. I have gotten contours done by a professional and then compared them to the drone's. They are identical. The only problem with the drone, is that you must know the height of one of the contours to adjust the rest. If not, it will give you negative numbers and adjust accordingly.

Thanks again.

This shouldn't be an too much of an issue as i will set up some control points with the rover and work from there.

I think by the sounds of it i should just jump in and buy the pro 4 and let all the issues come to light while practicing ?
 
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Ditto on the good comments on the Phantom 4 Pro. After a small (actually not so small) mishap with my current unit, I just picked up two more great units on Ebay for $750 and $875. Near new condition. Plenty out there, just check them out thoroughly.

I have been mapping for three years with the P4P, and don't think there is a better mapping drone. Pix4D is a great processing option. The trial and free version gives you an opportunity to learn the software. The monthly purchase price will allow you to export useful data, without breaking the bank.

Good luck! There is a large learning curve. But plenty of help for you on this forum when you get to that point. Check and re-check until you are comfortable with the results.
 
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+1 For DroneDeploy. TBC will handle drone data, but you still need to process it first. DD is very easy to use and is rapidly releasing customer requests and improvements. We have been a customer for over 2 years and after trying several other softwares it just makes the most sense for our construction business. I would encourage you to join the forum and let me know if you have any questions. @michaelL at forum.dronedeploy.com
 
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Hello everyone I'm fairly new to the forums little background on me, I just recently passed my 107 exam earlier this month and upgraded to a P4P with the hopes of being able to sustain myself financially with my passion for flying. I've been practicing my mapping with DD and pix4d but my question is how exactly do I start making money doing this? Who would I need to talk to? Where would I need to go? Not sure if it matters or not but I'm located in Charlotte NC. Any help at all would be greatly appreciated (the wife is all over me about spending money without having actually made any yet).

Thanks

Jody
 
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Hello everyone I'm fairly new to the forums little background on me, I just recently passed my 107 exam earlier this month and upgraded to a P4P with the hopes of being able to sustain myself financially with my passion for flying. I've been practicing my mapping with DD and pix4d but my question is how exactly do I start making money doing this? Who would I need to talk to? Where would I need to go? Not sure if it matters or not but I'm located in Charlotte NC. Any help at all would be greatly appreciated (the wife is all over me about spending money without having actually made any yet).

Thanks

Jody
Hey Jody, welcome to the life! I've been surveying for the last 20 years and drone mapping for the last three. I primarily map for the construction company that I work for, but we have decided to start providing drone services to external parties and it is actually been pretty easy to start picking up clients. That is - as long as you become proficient at making good accurate maps. The types of clients is really up to your creativity and how you can market a use-case for those people, but I can tell you right now that land developers, home builders, municipalities (GIS and Parks/Rec departments) and small excavation contractors would be a prime segment for you if you are a good mapper. Are you on the DroneDeploy forum? If not, join it and come chat with me and the group. I'm @michaelL. I don't know what the market is like in North Carolina, but I would stay away from videography and real estate. The market here is saturated and the people are cutthroat. There's much more money to be made and other places without the fear of being undercut by someone that is just doing it to make a little money on the side. You want to find a few clients and forms some lasting relationships. Being from Texas I only know what I have heard and read about the North Carolina drone scene, but get with local users and know your drone code. It's very likely that you're going to have a hard time with surveyors and local bylaws. Hope to talk to you soon!
 

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