M+,Tuffwing Snapkit, P4P

Greetings to the Emlid Community. I have enjoyed reading the posts!

I have been flying 4 years, and have my 107 cert. As a drone mapping beginner, I am still trying to wrap my mind around all the details of first flight which I plan today.

I have added a Tuffwing PPK Snapkit to my Phantom 4 Pro which attaches one M+, & antenae to the P4P drone. A shutter hotshoe is included which attaches to the drone as well. I have 2 Reach M+ units. One for the drone, One for the base. I have 4 GCP’s I want to try out as well. The step by step instructions at Tuffwing seem quite complete, but I want to be well prepared as possible before liftoff!

Here are few questions for the community:

*Would terrain follow in my Dronelink flight plan help the mapping mission as it follows AGL elevation contours & keeps the drone at a more constant distance from the ground during flight?

*Do either BASE or ROVER need a wifi hotspot connection at any point during the job/flight?

*Can we use Emlid Studio for post processing instead of the expensive pay software such as EZ SURV, and Field Genius?

Thank you.

Welcome Eric! Congrats and condolences for getting into the PPK world. JK it’s not as bad as it seems up front.

  1. I think terrain following is important once you get a 10m variance in the site elevations. The goal is to keep your GSD as consistent as possible so any time there are steep slopes or areas with a long consistent slope TF will allow the processing to create more tie-points because what it is seeing matches better.
  2. The only reason you would need internet is if you are running RTK and need to either cast your base or pick up another base via NTRIP. You are going to be doing onsite PPK so the best scenario is to have a known point but you can also just average in a point and correct everything later if you need to be on a specific coordinate system.
  3. For the PPK you can use RTKLIB or Emlid Studio. I have used Studio myself for drone PPK but I am betting that is the first thing to try. There are many others on here that can help.

Great feedback Michael. Thanks for the info. The “procedure picture” is getting clearer!

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Feel free to PM me any time.

Hello again. Well, my first couple weeks flying my Phantom 4 Pro with the Tuffwing PPK Snapkit went well. After a Samsung Note 9 update. (which may or may not be the culprit) Every flight lifts off & climbs to 150ft set altitude successfully. However, as soon as the drone starts to fly to its approach location to start the mission, it hesitates, moves a couple feet, hesitates again & again. When it finally moves forward 10 -15ft, it brakes abruptly over & over, until I abort the mission. I usually get a msg " Drone too far off course, 75 ft". This happens with Dronelink & 3Dsurvey mission planning software. I will try Pix4D mission software this morning, wind conditions permitting. Here are additional troubleshooting steps I have taken:

*Turned off all obstacle avoidance sensors.
*Secured Tuffwing antenna mast between side sensors, (which should only be on in Tripod & Beginner modes).
*Secured hotshoe attachment wire away from front sensors.

Thanks for reading this everyone!

I see you said that you turned of OA but this is 100% what happens with OA. The same thing happened to us the first time we went to fly as I didn’t notice the antenna cable was in front of one of the sensors. It’s completely off in DJI?

Yes that makes sense, especially when the props are creating turbulence that could move the wire back & forth over or near a sensor. Last night, in prep for today’s test, I rerouted and fastened the wire out of harm’s way, & cleaned sensors. An interesting side point: The antenna mast lower mounting block is held in by 2 little black screws. The top screw is already loose. This allows the antenna mast to pivot slightly back & forth, (not good) The tiny top screw is hard to access, so I secured it for now with a wire tie.

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Make sure to Loctite all the set screws too. Hardware on drones always need this because the high frequency vibrations will continue to loosen parts as you go if you don’t.

Will do. Good maintenance.

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