What drone pilots SHOULD KNOW
1 The key thing when steering a drone is hand-eye coordination.
Consequently, people who play a lot of computer games often make the best drone pilots.
2 If you want to familiarise yourself with acceleration and slowing down, turn off the GPS when flying or switch the drone to manual mode.
3 The rules governing the use of drones are still evolving, but at the moment you don’t need a special licence to fly one in Australia. You can fly a drone if it weighs less than 2kg and you aren’t using it for commercial reasons. Always keep it in sight – and fly below 120m.
4 A quadcopter is great for beginners because it offers decent manoeuvrability for the money and is easy to repair. Octocopters are the top of the range option, and are faster and more stable. These are used by professional videographers and can carry heavy camera equipment.
5 Take part in training sessions
and workshops. Familiarise yourself with safety regulations and the different parts of your drone (see above). Finally, it’s good practice to have another person around when filming – one flies the drone and the other controls the camera.
ROTORS Eight rotors, usually made of beech wood, spin at 80km/h and alternate between clockwise and anticlockwise BODY Carbon fibre with titanium alloy, the body is robust but ultra light at just 4kg CARRYING HANDLE The camera is attached here. A three-axis positioning system helps stabilise the images, even in high winds POWER PACK Two lithium polymer batteries
CONTROL CENTRE The brains of the drone contains the flight computer, motor controls and GPS MICROPHONE Used to record ambient noise CAMERA The camera sends images to a monitor on the ground. The zoom and shutter are controlled via remote control THE EXPENDABLES 3 To capture the train scene, the camera floated around a speeding carriage. A camera crane wouldn’t have worked.