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Please explain return to home to me

Metalhead

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Hi,

New Skydio 2 owner here and first post.

The intended use for my Skydio is for tracking me in the mountains while I drive my Polaris RZR. Can a home point be set even when tracking and then moving away from the launch point? If a home point is set, will it attempt to return to the original launch point?

I had it tracking me while on a narrow tree-lined trail and apparently it thought the trees were too close and went high and then got stuck after I went around a switchback. I had the Beacon and my phone connected but it couldn`t find me. I was able to manually fly it back, but I panicked because the battery was getting low. I had visions of losing it on a heavily treed steep slope. In my panic, I didn`t try the "return to phone". Would that have worked even though it had lost me and was stuck?

I had another instance flying with the controller and got too far away and lost connection. I had been flying around and over an alpine lake about a 1/8 mile ahead of me. It was about a 1/8 mile behind & lost connection. It immediately flew back over my head to the lake and proceeded to make a rough landing. Luckily not in the lake. If I had set a home point, would it have returned to without it regaining connection? Would hitting the "return to phone" have brought it back to me?

Thanks
 

Metalhead

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I did a test this evening. I launched Skydio in my driveway connected to the beacon and phone, then set a home point. I walked about 100 yards away with it tracking me. I stopped and hit return to home and it spun 180 degrees and headed back to my driveway. Ironically it lost connection at the driveway and spun 180 again and headed back towards me then regained connection. As I understand, it will return to the last point of connection when this happens.

The lesson I learned is if I have Skydio tracking me I don`t want to set a home point. If I travel a mile being tracked and hit return to home, it will fly a mile backwards to the launch point. Setting a home point is for when the pilot will be stationary.

If I use return to phone, Skydio will fly to the location I`m currently at. I was concerned about what to do in a situation as I had before when connected to the beacon and phone and loses me while tracking. I would assume as long as I had a connection the return to phone could be used to bring Skydio to me. If connection is lost though, it could take off looking for its last point of connection which is not a comforting situation. I suppose return to phone could be used when connection is regained to bring it back to me.

Am I correct on all this? Are there any tips or tricks to regain connection as Skydio is flying off in the wrong direction looking for its last connection point?
 

baksideDisasterFlicks

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Return to phone is great as long as you maintain connection. Setting home point is advantageous if you think you might get disconnected and you can set the home point where you plan to go hopefully in a safe landing spot. So in your case tracking your RZR, put the home point at a spot down the trail/road where your heading. I find this works well if you are riding through heavily treed areas where it can get stuck, moving fast, moving around large obstacles that block signal, and changing elevations. These are all places you disconnect and home point might save the day.

You fly enough you'll start to learn the many nuisances of Skydio disconnecting. A lot of the time I find myself back tracking beacon/phone in hand trying to reconnect and listening for the drone. More times than I would like to count I've got it stuck in some group of trees spinning battery unable to go anywhere and I have to go rescue it. This is the worst when I'm down mountain from it.

My biggest problem is 75% of the time I'm filming in a location with no cell service so I can't see where to set the home point. Be nice to able to download maps offline.
 

Metalhead

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Return to phone is great as long as you maintain connection. Setting home point is advantageous if you think you might get disconnected and you can set the home point where you plan to go hopefully in a safe landing spot. So in your case tracking your RZR, put the home point at a spot down the trail/road where your heading. I find this works well if you are riding through heavily treed areas where it can get stuck, moving fast, moving around large obstacles that block signal, and changing elevations. These are all places you disconnect and home point might save the day.

You fly enough you'll start to learn the many nuisances of Skydio disconnecting. A lot of the time I find myself back tracking beacon/phone in hand trying to reconnect and listening for the drone. More times than I would like to count I've got it stuck in some group of trees spinning battery unable to go anywhere and I have to go rescue it. This is the worst when I'm down mountain from it.

My biggest problem is 75% of the time I'm filming in a location with no cell service so I can't see where to set the home point. Be nice to able to download maps offline.
I hadn`t thought of setting a home point further down the trail. Matter of fact I haven't used the map feature of the app yet. I`ll have to check it out.

If it is stuck in trees or whatever, will using return to phone bring it back or does it still need help from the pilot?
 

baksideDisasterFlicks

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I hadn`t thought of setting a home point further down the trail. Matter of fact I haven't used the map feature of the app yet. I`ll have to check it out.

If it is stuck in trees or whatever, will using return to phone bring it back or does it still need help from the pilot?
It kinda depends. I've had it eventually find it's way out and return. But generally when it's stuck, it's stuck. For some reason it always try's to move side to side, but never up. What usually happens to me is once I connect back up I have to pilot out. Generally I rotate 360 looking for a way out, but most the time I can just climb up and get around the obstruction. That's why it's good to keep the beacon in a visible/audible location when you are filming. If you don't get stuck and disconnect in the same short period of time it'll throw a notification and beep loudly that it can't move around a obstruction. Usually I'm moving to fast though when this happens so I just get the disconnect.
 

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