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Found 15 results

  1. I flew helicopters in the Army decades ago, and got have my Commercial, Instrument, Single Engine, Land Rotary Wing ticket. I'm not current, and haven't been for years. (renting helos is big bucks!). Can't really see flying a helicopter ever again, and I've never flown a fixed wing. Questions on getting the Part 107 cert (opinions and legalities both welcome): Do I just start over as if I didn't already have an FAA cert? Do I get a Sport Pilot rating and go from there? (I wouldn't mind getting the rating, but time and cost is a factor). Other options? Any advice or suggestions welcome.
  2. I am in Denver at a friends place and he is wanting an aerial picture of his new home. He isn't paying or anything so I am thinking this is more of a hobby question, but it's right on the edge of some airspace. But then it's inside a mode c veil. I won't go beyond 100' if I do it, but what do you all think? See attached: https://www.dropbox.com/s/7yj1s0exyoj3lol/Screenshot 2017-05-26 21.13.24.png?dl=0
  3. I recently received my 107 certification and would like to start making money by offering contract services. In addition to my Phantom 4 Professional, I am waiting on a Matrice 210 with an XTR and Z30 so I can offer high-end services. I have 6 years flying drones for recreation and fun and am now looking to transition into it professionally. Problem is, I don't have a clue how to begin. I don't really want to start a company where I have to go out and generate business but would rather just contract with one or more already established companies. I live in the Tampa, FL area and would be willing to travel as reasonable. Any suggestions on how to get going with this? Thanks
  4. Hey everyone, I was a runner a 5K race last weekend. I came across someone flying a drone who was an employee of a local media company and was getting footage for that event. This person did not have his Part 107 license, so I emailed the media company, who said the race was not a commercial shoot and were not contracted or paid in regards to the drone footage. However, I went to the race site and did see a drone photo that they posted. I'm not sure if I believe that they were not paid and thinking about reaching out to the race committee. Does it count as commercial footage if it's not paid for? As a drone community, we are trying to work on making progress with sUAS's and I feel that these situations hinder that ability. Thoughts?
  5. Hi from Australia, great to see an active forum with quality content. Have been involved in drones for around 5 years, built , repaired, flown and owned including Phantom 2, DJI f550, DJI F450, Blade 350QX, Yuneec, Currently use Inspire1 and DJI Phantom 4 Pro for commercial ops. Like the US, Australia's drone laws are in constant flux, here we are seeing some reasonable laws coming in, especially for commercial ops. Looking forward to learning and contributing.
  6. So I am starting up a drone business on the side for doing crop scouting and working with insurance agencies. The problem I am seeing so far is that some farmers have bought their own with filtered gopros or something similar for NDVI imagery. How do I approach these farmers and explain that what they are doing is in fact illegal as none of them have gone out and completed the necessary requirements for commercial use of their drones. I have even heard from a crop dusting pilot that drones were flying over the SAME fields as they were trying to spray! My question is the approach and the explanation of benefit on why a dedicated legal company should be used? Or do I just explain the safety reasons behind it and hope that they get more education?
  7. Hey again guys. The moment is finally here. We are obtaining our certifications and in search of jobs. Because this market is "new", in a sense, what is the "standard" or ball park pricing we are charging for different services. (Yes there are many). We can say it's based upon location, experience, demand. Yes those all play a role. However, at the moment it's hard to justify pricing. Simply because there isn't much in this industry just yet. For myself, I'm starting off shooting real estate and exteriors for builders. What did photographers charge who shot out of a helicopter? Or what are you guys, and girls, basing your pricing off of to justify to your clients (in whatever area you may service)? Eventually our competition will be charging so low it'll be insane, but what is the standard at the moment to make the majority of the clients agree? Any input is appreciated! -Wash
  8. Hi, my name is Andre' Messina from New Orleans, La. I recently graduated from film school and am interested in flying my drone commercially as either an independent contractor or my own company. I am trying to figure out where to begin. Should I look at getting my sport pilot license? If so does anyone have a recommendations for schools? My other question would be I know it takes a long time to get the exemption, should I apply before obtaining a pilot license or wait until after I have the license? Thanks for any feedback. I really appreciate the help. Andre'
  9. Hi all, received the below email from Ren out of Manchester. With his permission, I'm posting. Hope this is helpful to those of you in the UK considering getting your PFAW. -- Hi Alan, Ren here in the UK. I have just undergone the process to become a professional UAV pilot here in the UK. To do this you need a permission from the Civil Aviation Authority (the UK equivalent of your FAA) and have to undergo training with a CAA accredited organisation to achieve this. There are a number of organisations that offer this service and it’s up to the individual involved which one you go with. Often this will come down to the one which offers to run the course nearest to where you live but they all offer more or less the same thing. The goal is obtain a permission to fly for payment or valuable consideration from the CAA. The process is set out below. Firstly sign up with a accredited organisation. It’s fairly expensive! Expect to pay around £1,600 (About $2,400) but you do get a comprehensive package. Part one: Attend (usually) a 3 day classroom based training course. The courses are usually taken by air professionals, either ex pilots or ex RAF (Royal Air Force) personnel. So they know what they’re talking about! This part of the course covers the basics. The theory of flight, weather, navigation, air law, flight planning, lipo batteries and how to go about writing your operations manual. Part of the course involves a flight planning scenario, here you are given a fictitious flight operation and you have to plan it according to all the air laws and regulations and brief your flight to the instructor and the rest of the class. It all seems a bit daunting at first but they make it as humorous as possible whilst sticking to the seriousness of the subject. It is actually quite good fun. I enjoyed it and obviously you get to meet other people that want to get into the professional flying sector. At the end of the 3 day course you have to take a theory of flight examination, the pass mark is 75%, so if you can get above this, you’re in! The examination is 90 minutes long and you must answer every question. I passed! Before the 3 day course (at least with the company that I signed up with) there was an e-earning element, so you cover most of the first day of the course online before you even reach the classroom. I found this really useful and it really gives you a head start and a taste of what to expect. Part two: You have to write an operations manual. This is a document that sets out how you are going to conduct your UAV business. Mostly it is to do with safety but it is quite a substantial document and will run into around 50 pages of A4 size text! It is perhaps the hardest part of the process. It took me one month to write my operations manual. Once completed you have to submit your operations manual for acceptance. Your manual will be reviewed by flight professionals. My first submission was rejected but they point out the areas that they want you to change and all you need do is amend these areas, you don’t have to re-write the entire manual! At the very beginning, they emphasise that it has to be your operations manual and relates to the type of UAV that you are going to use in your business. If you try copying someone else’s manual, they will know and it could get you kicked off the course if you try this and you don’t get your money back! After having your operations manual accepted, you move onto the final stage. Part three: Operations and flight practical test. In this you have to demonstrate that you can actually fly a UAV! You are assigned an instructor (mine was an army helicopter pilot) and they give you a mission to fly. Your job is to plan the mission according to what you have written in your operations manual and stick to the air law element of the theory element of the course. So on the day, you have to plan the mission, look out for the weather (TAF or METAR), know the type of airspace that you are flying in (controlled – uncontrolled) erect a take off and landing cordon and choose an emergency landing site. Obviously the best bit of this part of the course is that you actually get to fly your UAV. You have to demonstrate that you can fly and have good control, I had to demonstrate that I could fly in full manual mode as I had written this in my operations manual. They give you 3 emergencies to deal with on the test and you have to deal with these immediately and without hesitation or you will fail. I passed. Part of your operations manual will have to include an emergency procedures section. You have to write it as challenge and response. So for instance: Loss of GPS Signal: 1. Fight mode.................................................................................................................Change 2. GPS.............................................................................................................................Regained 3. Land............................................................................................................................ASAP Public Encroachment: 1. Safe Configuration.....................................................................................................Select If the matter cannot be resolved 2. Landing site...............................................................................................................Select 3. Land...........................................................................................................................As soon as it is safe to do so Air Incursion: If another aircraft manned or unmanned were to enter the AOO 1. Landing site...............................................................................................................Select 2.Land.............................................................................................................................ASAP The PIC would be responsible for the reporting of any incident post flight. Anyway, you get my my drift! The emergency procedures that I was given were 1. Pilot incapacitation 2. A bird strike 3. Air incursion. So basically for incapacitation you just hit the home button or turn of the transmitter, they want to see that your UAV can return on its own to the home point. Most of it is land as soon as possible. It’s all fairly straight forward but you have to remember what YOU have written in YOUR operations manual. You have then completed all the elements required. They pass you and give you a recommendation. You then apply (and pay the fee £112 – $168) to the CAA for a permission to fly. Once you have the permission you can fly for payment or valuable consideration. The permission lasts for 1 year, you then have re-apply but you don’t have to do the course again, you just have to re-apply annually. The re-application fee is £56 – $112 annually. If and when you get a new UAV you need to update your operations manual and submit it to the CAA. The fee is per aircraft by the way, so it could get very expensive if you intend to operate several different types of aircraft. You also have to have public liability insurance, you won’t get your permission unless you are fully insured. And that’s about it! It sounds hard but it’s not that bad. It took me 4 months from deciding that I wanted to do it, to finally getting qualified. All the best, Ren, Manchester United Kingdom.
  10. Enjoyed this article: Parrot, the Paris-based technology company with a portfolio of drones targeted at the consumer market, is making a significant push into the commercial drone market. The spearhead of this effort is Sequoia, a multispectral sensor targeted at the agriculture market. But there is more to it than that. More here: http://dronelife.com/2016/02/10/parrot_commerical_drone_sequoia/
  11. If you video a practice at a school (public or private, college or high school), is this considered a commercial use if the footage is not for sale and for educational purposes only?? It's an invaluable teaching tool!
  12. Hi, Alan, et al... Thanks for the information on the upcoming Model and 3D Mapping course! I have a question for you. I'm curious as to what you've heard concerning the FAA's ban on commercial use of drones. It has always seemed wrong to me that a teenager can fly the same flight plans that I fly using the same drone and take video and photos with no problem. However, I'm prohibited from flying the exact same route and drone if I make any money from the effort. It would be a little more reasonable if hobbyists were restricted more than commercial operators, such as, only 100 feet and below in altitude, only on private property, etc. But safety can't be a reason for the limitations if both the hobbyist and commercial operators are flying the same routes and drones. Your thoughts or anyone else's? Thanks! Rick Rick Faircloth Drone Flyte
  13. I applied for a Section 333 exemption some time ago. I'm hoping for a positive outcome to that soon. My thoughts now go to registration, getting a N-number, etc. Does anyone have any experience with this process? I don't want to wait until March, when website registration may be possible. Thanks.
  14. Hi there everyone, I just thought I would write my first message to introduce myself. I'm Karl from the UK, I am currently a tree surgeon however I am half way through getting my Cap-C PFAW, I have done the theory side, now just battling my way through the operations manual (tedious) before I can go for my practical exam I hope to meet new hobbyists and commercial pilots to share thoughts and ideas!
  15. Hello! I'm Paul and I am a coach at a college in Florida. I love the shots my DJI 3 gets at practice, but was told by our School of Aviation that it is considered a 'commercial' operation to video our own practices...which I find a bit of a stretch as we are not selling the videos. Does anyone have information that shows that using a drone to video practices (which is a million times safer than having a person stand in a chair lift and do it) is NOT a commercial use as the FAA sees it? There seems to always be ambiguity with the FAA but I don't see where it says that it is commercial to video your own practices at a college anywhere.