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How to hand catch a drone!

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How to hand catch drones like the DJI Phantom 4

Quadcopters with fixed legs are a little easier to hand catch since there is more area to work with, but be careful of grabbing the gimbal instead of the leg. Also, gripping the quadcopter too tight can result in stress cracks, so make sure you grip the drone with just enough force to keep it stable in your hand. Here is a video by YouTuber Billy Kyle explaining tips on how to hand catch a DJI Phantom 4:

Hover the drone within reachable distance.

Descend the drone using one hand on the controller. Then position the other hand underneath the quadcopter and grip the Phantom 4’s back leg like a gun once it lands in your hand.

The thumb should be placed around the battery area, while the rest of the fingers grip the drone’s leg.

Once the drone is in your hand, continue to descend until the motors shutoff.

Hand catching alternative

Hand catching is only recommended for experienced pilots, but other droners can use landing gears or matts to help safely land a quadcopter. FreeWell made landing gears to help a drone land in areas like tall grass or in a small puddle of water, and they even made landing mats for uneven terrain, but hand catching is still something worth looking into.

Another alternative to hand catching is throwing a towel at a drone, which is exactly what Actor Will Smith did in his YouTube vlog to land a Mavic. It may be dangerous for the drone in the long run because the motors shut off after being tangled by the towel, but it’s an emergency technique for landing on something like a boat.

Again, please take extreme caution before attempting to do your first hand catch!

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