Failure Analysis - What'll Fail First?

Discussion in 'Cinestar 8' started by Jonathan Keao, Sep 22, 2014.

  1. Jonathan Keao

    Jonathan Keao Member

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    Could someone point me to a forum topic that discusses what I could expect to fail first on my CS8? Motors, FC, GPS, booms, etc.? I've done little upkeep other than general dust removal, etc., though I'd like to incorporate a more meaningful maintenance program.

    So far it's been flying for just over a year.

    Aloha,
    Jon
     
  2. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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    Based on my experience, the most likely things to fail are:

    1. You.
    2. As a result of 1., you will have to replace props, motors, batteries, booms, avionics.... :)


    If you manage to avoid 1., then:
    3. Flight batteries.
    4. Motor bearings.

    Andy.
     
  3. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    HI Jon

    The motor bearings will start going any where from 60 to 100 hours depending upon the bearing and motor manufacturer of course. That's probably the best thing you can do for maintenance. IF you are running an older 2.1 flight control board the pins on the pressure sensor can get fragile. As far as electronics failure I think they are pretty durable it all depends upon how hard your landings are. Best preventative maintenace is to occassionally check to make sure bolts are tight as things come loose from vibration.

    I think most important thing you can do is to keep your flying skills sharp. Mosts of the time copters will crash before something fails. I contribute most crashes to the following factors:

    1. Pushing shots too far outside of what you or your equipment is capable of doing.
    2. Not inspecting your equipment, and not executing a solid preflight routine/risk assessment and flight plan.
    3. Losing orientation awareness because you were relying too much on FPV equipment
    4. Going past line of sight and throwing depth perception off
    5. Not having enough experience or flight time with equipment.
    6. New changes that are untested or unproven to be reliable.
    7. Relying too much on GPS and other flight automation such as carefree beyond what they are intended for.

    Or to simplify, operator/pilot error from doing something stupid that you knew better not to do.
     
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  4. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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  5. Steve Maller

    Steve Maller UAV Grief Counselor

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    +1 on Andy and Dave's comments.

    In my experience, it's not a component failure, per se, but a mechanical failure of a connector. These machines have so many physical connections (some soldered, some crimped, etc...) and there are a great many of them (almost all, AFAIK) that can take the copter down if they fail. Everything from cold solder joints to melted sub-par connections. Checking and testing them all periodically is critical. Securing them with whatever means necessary is essential.
     
  6. Scott Strimple

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    I'll offer up a "ditto" on Andy and Dave's comments also!
     
  7. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    One other thing I can recommend is to keep a close eye on the condition of your main EC5 power connectors, the ones that plug into your batteries. They can get overheated and fatigued from constant pulling on them from battery changes. This year I have had about 300 flights on my EC5 connectors and they are getting to the point that the wires near the connectors are getting fatigued and I'll be replacing them very soon.
     
  8. Jonathan Keao

    Jonathan Keao Member

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    Thanks, guys. I really appreciate your comments. I'll be sure to keep an eye on the mechanical connections. I don't fly nearly as much as I'd like, but I'll probably swap motor bearings by the end of this year just to be safe.

    I've already had my share of personally caused mishaps, mostly caused by rushing through my pre-flight checklist. Luckily, most were camera related and not flight related. I'm also pretty good about practicing with two smaller quads that I have, so I'm usually pretty warmed up when its showtime.

    Aloha,
    Jon
     

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