Five Things I Recommend for New Drone Pilots

1) Read the instruction manual. Watch the DJI videos based on your particular model

The saying goes “knowledge is power”. This is very true with your new drone. I know you are pumped to rip it out of the new box, put it on the table to install the props then run outside and take to the skies above. 


Slow down first to learn. It will allow you to be more prepared for when you do take flight. “Boring Brian!” you’re saying. I know right?! I am right. Though the alternative is an expensive crash then being butt hurt the rest of the day as you stare at your broken drone till parts come in. This will also prevent you from getting in financial trouble if you wreck into someone’s property.

Also refer to the FAA website regarding unmaned aircrafts for rules and registration if required. YouTube will also be an amazing resource for information. 

2) Remember how to play Resident Evil

Remember in Resident Evil how moving forward was not done by simply moving the sticks in that direction. The same goes for flying a drone. These are normally called Tank Controls. Forward to the drone is always the direction the front is facing. Not forward in relationship to where you are to it. 

I recommend launching the Flight Simulator in the DJI Go app. Now the app does have limitations when you “fly” it far away. It will become a speck on the screen quickly when practicing motions. I would move the drone where I can see it in the Sim then see how it reacts with different inputs. Another exercise I would complete was pick a spot on the map then fly there and back. 

3) Download UAV Forecast

UAV Forecast gives you insights on the weather and conditions outside for your flight. It also gives a recommendation if it is a good time or not to go. You can also check the future forecast for when it will be the time to fly later in the day, if it is not right now. 

Most helpful to me are the current wind conditions. It will use your phones GPS for locations or type in the address you are traveling to. 

4) Extend the controller sticks outward

When I have been flying my DJI Phantom it has been helpful to extend the controller sticks longer. With longer controller sticks it causes smaller movements to the drone to be made which results in smoother flight. Reduced jerking makes flight easier when you have started out. 

To adjust the controller sticks upward, simply turn them to the left similar to a nut. The underside will stay in place. When the top of the stick is further and comfortable tighten the bottom underside piece in place to keep them locked. 

5) Remain calm! 

The first time I flew I attempted to test the Return to Home feature. Due to my inexperience I cannot explain as to why but the drone took straight off into a tree. Luckily, I remained calm to cancel the Return to Home avoiding the tree. Deep breathes then thinking about your next move will reduce crashing your drone into the ground. 

Also I would avoid return to home unless it has disconnected from the controller, then cancel Return to Home yourself when it has joined back with the remote. Insure your Return to Home is set high enough to avoid all obstacles around you to avoid a wreck. 

Want to see me almost crash? Here’s the video!

I hope these help you get started with your new drone! I have been flying since the beginning of December so I am no expert. Though these items have helped me start out.