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Q500 Just fell out of the sky

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At approximately 5 minutes into the flight and at approximately 300' AGL I selected HOME. The craft flew back to me and when almost directly overhead, it just started tumbling and fell to the ground motors still running all the way down and the drone was still powered up after impact. This was my 19th flight in two years and I had never had a problem before. Before I attempt to repair or replace what's left of my Q500, I just wanted to know if anything like this has been reported before.

Mike
 
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Oh dear. My commiserations for your loss.

What was the voltage / battery status showing as you called RTH ? Also what was the outside temperature, and had you been looking after the battery packs properly, in terms of storage voltages etc ? Lastly, do you have any telemetry you can post that would help us diagnose what went wrong ?
 

Steve Carr

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Sadly, a small number of Q500's have suffered from ESC failures. I'm confident that is what you experienced. Many times your nose can locate the one that failed by simply sniffing each motor. Generally a faulty ESC on a Q will fail in the first 60 min of flight time.
 
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At approximately 5 minutes into the flight and at approximately 300' AGL I selected HOME. The craft flew back to me and when almost directly overhead, it just started tumbling and fell to the ground motors still running all the way down and the drone was still powered up after impact. This was my 19th flight in two years and I had never had a problem before. Before I attempt to repair or replace what's left of my Q500, I just wanted to know if anything like this has been reported before.

Mike
All of what AeroJ said but also did you check your props before your flight? I have heard about the ESC thing before and there are a couple of video's on YT of it actually happening, so this also could be a thing to look at. Usually, the Q500 is one of the most reliable drones out there. I've flown 100's of flights with mine without an issue. If you do find it was an ESC, replace all 4, not just the bad one. Although, if it was at 300ft when it came down, I can't imagine that there's be much left to replace?!!
 
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All,
I didn't notice any smell or check the temp of the motors. This was the first flight after having transported the vehicle and I did check the props, but perhaps not good enough. After sifting through the carnage a bit more trying to account for all the parts, I couldn't find the left front prop. Initially, I discounted its absence since that area was the primary impact point. However, further examination reveal that there was no prop hub and the threads on the motor show no signs of damage (a new prop screws on easily).

I'm guessing that when I selected the HOME mode the rapid decel to start a descent may have allowed that prop to spin off from the inertia.
 

h-elsner

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Some time ago I lost an ESC midair at my Q500. It flips over and fell streight down on his back. Good for the gibal which survived this crash.

Do you have the flight log from your incident. possibly there some more to see what may happened. Flight logs are stored in the SD card beyond the battery in the ST10+.

br HE
 

Steve Carr

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further examination reveal that there was no prop hub and the threads on the motor show no signs of damage
I think you found the cause. If it was an ESC failure all 4 hubs would still be attached. To tighten the blades on the Q, after the prop touches the o-ring I hold the motor with one hand and tighten the prop with the other until if feels snug. I presume the o-ring were all in place?
 
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I retrieved the telemetry. Based on altitude and roll, yaw, and pitch elapsed time from the event to impact was just about 5 sec. Timing from the start of the event, "f_mode" went from 13 to 14 in .654 sec, "error_Flags1" went from "0" to "32" 0.234 sec later, then to "33" 1.0 sec after that. The "motor_status" remained at "15" until 2.1 secs after impact and then went to "13" at the same time as "f_mode" went to "12".

Is there a decoder ring for these status values?
 
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Is there a decoder ring for these status values?
You need to get the program:
"Q500log2kml ".
A bit confusing for a first time read but easily navigated and error descriptors for most errors can be found.
I doubt the telemetry is going to be of much help in this instance.
Good luck and happy flying,
Jafo
Added: Look here:
PHP:
http://b-drone.nl/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Q500log2kml-manual.pdf
 
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h-elsner

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The user manual in the link above is too old:
Use this for latest info:
http://h-elsner.mooo.com/mydat/Q500log2kml_en.pdf

Hold mouse pointer on a cell in the table to get more information. Format of the flight log values as far as I know are described in the Appendix (Chapter 3) of the user manual.

f_mode 12 is the Emergency mode. The copter switches off all motors. Without having the FlightLog I guess, no ESC error.

Error flag 32 means Compass Calibration Warning (CCW) and 33 means CCW+Voltage Warning1.

be HE
 
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I'm on my second Q now. The first one just dropped like a brick into the St. Johns River here in Florida - no recovery. So I bought a new one. A few months later, the second one dropped as well but this time it was over land and only about 15 feet in the air. It was ESC.
I have an H Plus now, too, so I don't fly the Q as much but ever since I got it repaired, it flies fine. I use it for play and I use the Plus for business.
 
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Was finally able to reassemble the Q enough to power it back up and close out the video that was recording at the time of the accident. It clearly shows that there was no prop on the left front motor during its tumble. That lead me to expand my search of the crash scene and I located one undamaged prop approximately 30 meters northwest of the ground impact point.

Case closed. Cause of accident was failure to properly tighten the prop onto the motor spindle. In the future, I will always use the motor holding tool and tighten props snuggly. Further, following each prop removal/replacement, I will run a very short test flight - off the ground to 1 meter and then land and check the props.

This gives me the confidence to buy a replacement. Necessary since the frame and gimbal were completely destroyed and a full refurb system was less than just replacing the camera unit + body + legs.

Thanks to all for the clues and information you provided.

Mike
 

Steve Carr

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In the future, I will always use the motor holding tool and tighten props snuggly.
I would suggest not using the tool. The prop tool is intended to remove the props, not to install them. It's easy to overtighten them with the tool.
Spin the props down until they make contact with the rubber o-ring. Then hold the motor with one hand and turn the prop with the other about 1 full turn. No tighter than that.
 
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All of what AeroJ said but also did you check your props before your flight? I have heard about the ESC thing before and there are a couple of video's on YT of it actually happening, so this also could be a thing to look at. Usually, the Q500 is one of the most reliable drones out there. I've flown 100's of flights with mine without an issue. If you do find it was an ESC, replace all 4, not just the bad one. Although, if it was at 300ft when it came down, I can't imagine that there's be much left to replace?!!
Happened to me. Faulty front Esc. I caught the drone. No damages. $40 - $70 for one esc board. Think he can buy a new q500 n use the crashed one for parts.
 
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HI guys (n galls maybe)
I have just had a fall as well only from about 12' but it has ripped the camera off, ripped the wires out etc.

OK Thursday, after some health issues, nice weather decided to give it a flight in my garden. Batteries had been left and needed to be charged. Took it out and checked each battery in turn Three of my four gave me about 7 minutes up 100' and basically back down again.
The third had an almost full charge. This I inserted and took to 120' no problems . Moved around a bit, not too far neighbours garned both sides. Got back above my own garden. Emergency Land immediatly. Which I did.. From that point nothing started correctly.
So Spoke to Yuneec support. Who told me to run the GUI via USB, check out the motors and that alone would probably sort it out as a minor glitch.
I did, all motors passed and being fully functional. Re booted everything , flew it in garden for 2 minutes very low. No problems at all.
Next day arrives, another sunny day. Quite chuffed that my expensive Q500 had not got any problems. All batteries were now fully charged and ready to go. Prepped the system, went through all pre flight checks. No apparant problems. Took off to do a bit of manouvering set it to hover at about 10-12 Foot, Tested over my 'H' pad using light touch up and down then back to hovering, turning 360. Just to g et the beel back again.
So Quick it hardly registered, one side seemed to come upwards and the whole Q500 went smashing into the ground. I saw the camera ripped off and bounce around the garden. I saw the batter eject itself from the compartment and land on a rock in the garden.
My heart sank. as I said due to illness and family problems I have flown8-9 hours with camera running and about two hours where I forgot to engage the camera.

Just thought I'd let you know you were not alone in falling from sky, just glad not above anyone or vehicle for that matter.

Where do I get software to read the telemetry from the ST10+???

Regards Princy557
 

h-elsner

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Windows64bit: http://h-elsner.mooo.com/downloads/q500log2kml_en.zip
LINUX 64bit: http://h-elsner.mooo.com/downloads/q500log2kml_en.tar.gz

User manual: http://h-elsner.mooo.com/mydat/Q500log2kml_en.pdf

Download the whole directory "FlightLog" to your PC first. The open the Flightlog directory (not the telemetry files). So you will get full access to all files belonging to a dedicated flight.
Check the user manual if any questions or post it here.

br HE

Edit: Sounds like bad ESC. I have had the same. ESC went down in 60m height. Q500 felt like a rock. After replacing the body I have tested the ESC and the one that have had the problems seems to work again. But this was a fallacy. It went down again mid-air.
Lesson learnt: Better to replace the ESC in case of first problem.
 
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Thanks for the links. (h-elsner)
Not exactly sure what ESC stands for . At a bit of a loss really. Have reported to Yuneec, but I've had it for over a years by 1 month. Ill health and family stuff has got in the way of all the flights I wanted to.
Due to time scale I thinks maybe Yuneec will not do much, if anything.
Camera wires ripped , guess what all black wires. so soldering might be out.
So any help on what to do next greatfully received.
 

h-elsner

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ESC stands for Electronic Speed Control. It is need to let a brushless motor run. It can be easily exchanged but it needs soldering.
14795

Which motor is affected should be seen in telemetry - motor_status. Hold the mouse on the cell in this column with a value <>15 to get info about the affected motor.

br HE
 
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Hi h-elsner,
Nice piece of software. huge amount of information which might take a few days to work out.
But from what i can see, the Q500 was working fine when it dropped from the sky.
Will do a lot more reading today. Thanks for the software nice piece of work.
 

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