New Member from North Central Florida

Jack N Dixie

New member
Sep 21, 2023
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North Central Florida
Hi to the group.

I'm Jack. Been flying airplanes since 1985 (Private Pilot, multi-engine, instrument rated, 4K+ FLT HRS). Flew classified, million-dollar drones for the Department of Defense for 20+ years. Flew R/C model airplanes for a couple years in the early '90s but never 'excelled' at it as I spent more time building/rebuilding them (READ: crashed often) than actually flying and bailed out early from that adventure.

Built, flew, and owned three different experimental aircraft. I've crashed once (was a VERY BAD day!) Have flown 30+ different production airplanes since 1985. Last airplane I flew/owned was a Cirrus SR-20. Have flown backseat in the F-4 Phantom and E-2C Hawkeye with multiple CAT shots and traps on 'The Connie' in the '80s.

Drones have come a long way since I first tried the hobby so I thought I'd try my hand at these 'self-flying' quadcopters mainly for fun, taking overhead photos and hopefully some interesting videos in my spare time. My first drone, a Holy Stone HS720R should be delivered later today. If I'm having fun with the quadcopters, a DJI drone is probably in my future. Found this group online and hope to dig around in the forum archives for a 'few nuggets' of good information and advice.

Thanks for the welcome!

Jack 'N Dixie
Retired DEC-2016, 56 yrs young
US Navy Veteran (1978-1987)
School Bus Driver (2019-2021)
OTR Truck Driver (Kenworth T680) (2021-2023)
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My first drone, a Holy Stone HS720R should be delivered later today. If I'm having fun with the quadcopters, a DJI drone is probably in my future. Found this group online and hope to dig around in the forum archives for a 'few nuggets' of good information and advice.

Welcome from the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, USA.

As a New Drone Pilot, there are a couple of Legal Things you may need to do… What you have done in the past for the RC models may have been superseded by recent changes to the law.

If you have not already done so, you will need to get your TRUST Certificate. You can get that at the Pilot Institute Web Site (FREE…) . Your Drone weighs more than 250-grams (0.55 pounds) and while you are flying under The Exception for Recreational Flyers, you are required to register your Drone.

Link to the TRUST Certificate at the Pilot Institute Web Site (FREE…)

Link to the FAADroneZone (Optional Registration for Drones under 250-Grams…)

If you are considering acquiring your Part 107 License, here is a link to get you going…

Since you live in Florida, there are specific laws and rules for you to follow, please check the link below for all the Rules and Laws that are in effect in your neck of the woods and it also links you to some of the Best Places to Fly in your area… Also, if you travel on vacation, visit friends, and relatives in other parts of the country, check back here so you do not run afoul of the law.

You wrote that you may consider a DJI Drone in the future, then you wil probably want to join our Sister Site, MavicPilots. This site is dedicated almost exclusinvely to DJI Drones and all aspect of flying, fixing, and just plain having fun…

Even if you have flown "Stuff" before, here is some Good Old Fashion Advice…

You paid a lot of money for that Drone, put your phone number on it. If your drone gets lost or stuck in a tree and it finally comes down when you are not around, give the finders an opportunity to contact you so it can be returned.

Now, for the Fun Part, But do not let the excitement of the moment get the best of you. When you are going out to fly, do it slowly and deliberately. Get used to a set procedure and even practice it.

There are so many things I could write but these are the highlights that I feel need mentioning.

Plug in your phone/tablet into your controller; turn on the Controller and DJI Fly App (if it does not start on its own…). On the Drone, open the front legs, then open the back legs, then remove the Gimbal Cover.

The Gimbal is the most delicate item on the Drone and banging or bumping can damage it. I also fastened a short "Remove Before Flight" ribbon to the cover so it's more noticeable and I do not forget to remove it…

Turn on the drone and watch it come to "life." Watching the Gimbal go through its self-check is almost like watching a puppy or kitten opening its eyes for the first time…

Place the drone down (preferably on a Landing Pad) while it finishes its self-test (collecting satellites, etc…).

Check your battery status (Phone, Drone, and Controller), check the Signal Strength, by now the Controller should have reported it updated the Home Point.

Lift off, 6- feet (2-meters) or so, hover a bit, check the controls (move the drone a bit forward, back, left, right, yaw left and right). By now, your Controller will probably report again, Home point Updated.

If you go out in a rush and race thru your start up and take off before the drone has finished it prep, it may update its Home Point over that pond or that old tree you are flying over and in your excitement, you'll fly the drone long past it Low Battery point and when it engages Return to Home and lands in the pond or in a tree; it will be all on you…

Now go have fun, learn to fly the drone by sight before you try to fly it out a distance depending on the video feed, FPV.

I would also advise you to use YouTube and watch a lot of the Videos on flying and setting up the Drone. When it is too dark, too cold, or too wet, you can "fly it vicariously" through YouTube. Also watch some of the Blooper Drone Videos and learn how not to fly your "New Baby."

First off, I fly a DJI Mini 2 and I do not have any knowledge about the 720R, but here is a link to all the manuals for Holy Stone and their Apps…

And here are some instructional video to keep you new bird in the air…

Fly On and Fly Safe…
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There are a LOT of gold nuggets in your post. I have it bookmarked, saved and printed! Thanks for the time & effort putting that list of items together.

Have a nice weekend!
Greetings from Birmingham Alabama USA, welcome to the forum! We look forward to hearing from you!

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