Today, I had just received my new batteries from Hong Kong. I soldered the connector on the Zippy 3S 4000mAh and headed for Rancho San Antonio Park.
After the first quick 1mn flight to check the weight, I added my camera to enjoy a longer flight with the bigger battery (I figured over 25mn since I get around 15mn with batteries half that size).|
And then... well, I went downwind a bit too much before I realized that to fly back I had to have the plane point straight at me, at which point it would become absolutely invisible due to how far it was and its cross section becoming almost nil. I was however getting back slowly by making turns so I could see the plane when maybe 7mn into the flight, the battery crapped out and the plane went down so far out of view that I could not really tell where it went down.
The next 2.5 hours were spent with me walking all around the search area, which was quite big. I got to hike around Rancho San Antonio trails, go through the cemetary, jump 4 fairly tall fences that were stopping me from proceeding further ahead, and I brought my controller with me in the hopes that I could maybe hear the plane around me by moving the controls, but no such luck.
Instead, I got to see some hiking/biking trails, scale a few fences à la Jackie Chan, see several deer, more than 10 bunnies, an abandonned railroad track, a horse farm and more.
For now, I searched the Cemetery, Canyon Oak Way, Serra St, Madrone Ct, Manzanta Ct, the traintracks there, and the nearby power plant on California Oak Way.
But no plane :(
Map of the area I searched
and a couple of pictures of the area to give an idea:
Kind of sucks since I had my camera on it, a brand new battery, and $250-ish of electronics in addition to the plane itself :(
If I'm very lucky, someone will find the plane, notice my name and phone number on it, and call me, but I'm not holding my breath...
If someone somehow happens to have found a crashed remote controlled plane and found this post through google, please call me :) 408 7(zero)2 22(seven)1
(update) I went back this morning (the next day) to scope other pieces of the area, but it's basically not in anywhere easily visible. I however dropped 80 "have you found my plane" flyers in nearby resident's mailboxes, just in case it's in their yard, but at this point I'd say my chances of getting the plane back are below 30%.
(update #2) Got no answer from my flyer, or anyone who found the plane, so at this point, my chances of ever getting it back are below 5% :(
(update #3) I ordered a couple of SkyKing RC Lost Model. It would not have guanranteed that I get the plane back, but it would clearly have improved my odds.