HEQ Swan K-1 VTOL Flight Test Review – In-Depth – How it REALLY Works! (Bonus Mini Range Test)
This is the whole setup, its a v tall, vertical takeoff and landing fix wing. So like a multi, rotor drone, it can launch and land going straight up and down and you get the efficiency of a fixed wing, so it can fly like i dont know. If you remember the parrot disco, i did so much reviews on amazing smart plane, but you can launch and land in a small area a small space if you missed the unboxing, go ahead and check that video ill. Have it pop up here and also down in the description down below where you can get the k1 im doing a series on this? So first was the unboxing. Now is the flight test initial flight test see how it is then im going to be doing a range test too out here. I know it looks kind of dry today. Is this hawaii or what i live in hawaii and its just like the desert summer? Recently, i figured out a way to record the screen here. I just sideloaded the apk for a screen recorder. This is an android device in here gives you a screen: dont have to buy any other phones or anything, and so were just going to set it up. Launch this bugger and just see what this thing can do so lets get started with the k1 Music okay guys so putting this sucker together is really easy. Actually i didnt get the version that has the case, unfortunately, but theyre.
Sending me that black case, where you can just have everything in it anyway, going to set this up really quick uh, you take the main fuselage you figure out, which one is which, on these arms, really easy. I just kind of showed this in my unboxing. You can see kind of the slope of the wing, make sure you have the plug on these sides and just basically sliding it in slapping it together, get the same shape and line up the connectors, and you can see how easy those plug in so then you Can just kind of set it down and start putting the wings on just make sure you have the correct side. You have the leading edge right, which is thicker the tailing edge here, which is thinner and just match it up to the same shape of the actual fuselage. Here the main, the main drone going over the kind of landing gear and the motors you can see how these are like those older phantom style motors, super simple other wing boom boom slide the little bar spar. I guess you would call it into the hole where it goes. Cant really screw this up just make sure everything slaps together and there you go so thats. Basically, like you know, 75 percent set up, and then we just have to put these propellers on, and the dimpled motors are the reverse threads for the black. So make sure black goes on the dimple shaft motors, spinning them reverse, giving a good little crank on them and these ones here, where theres no dimple on the shaft.
You see that there, those get the silver ones and those are clockwise regular thread. What we do next is put the battery in so grab it here. Theres the battery compartment. We got velcro on the battery weve got velcro in the battery compartment. Cant really get this wrong just match up the shape its at and pop it in lets. Turn on the controller so check this thing out, it has a full on screen. This is an android. I think it was an 8.0 when i checked it on my unboxing, we went through kind of the info cool little controller. Dont have to worry about getting any phone, just press and hold the power, and this thing just boots up takes a little while to boot up because its basically booting up an android phone right plugging in to boot up, and this thing is going to go through – That infamous old, like bl heli, um firmware esc tones, you hear that sounds very familiar. Right closes the door better. If you just kind of shove, the cord with the connectors up in there push everything down and then go ahead, and this thing will close. Hopefully, really nice and tight and perfectly lets see yeah so thats way better that suckers ready, im gon na get this thing going on the screen. If the screen does automatically turn off just hit power once once you swipe up, it goes into the k1 app, so were just going to press.
Ok, its asking me to calibrate the pitot tube, which is the air speed, sensor, calibrate, and so the first step is just holding this theres a hole in the front of the air speed tube. And if you look at the screen, its in yellow – and it say its in calibration so im just holding it shut with my finger that little hole just like it shows when that turns green. Now i need to let my finger off and just blow kind of gently, and you see how it immediately picks up air and its done. It turned green just so i just blew just like the graphic on the screen. Gon na hit completed lets. Just do a compass just to make sure everythings good, lift this guy up and start turning it in the direction it shows so im just going to kind of turn it above my head now it says to put the drone down like its flying in fixed wing And then spin it around clockwise as well so im doing that now and if you forget the orientation look at the wing tips. These are the things that youre going to need to know if it doesnt work. The first time you know youre going to need to go back in try it again, unfortunately, were using a battery and its still saying, not completed okay. Well now, its saying try again so it turned yellow lets, try im just gon na try it standing up.
So you can kind of see what im doing, not the easiest to do in front of you turn green see that now we need to turn it on its side and just kind of copy how the wing tips are so facing me wing tips to my right And turning it now, this is where youre going to want to be careful of holding the top of the wing like this. You might pull that sucker off right boom turn green, making sure the wings are all on good. You know you may have these issues and im just kind of showing it to you. Usually, if you just tap the screen away from this, it usually kind of goes away, but its not so apparently theres an issue with the app right now. So im gon na go ahead and close the app and then well go back into the app lets. Go ahead and launch that again, so im dragging up and im just finding heq fly right there, maybe its a little warm for it today i dont know so this is different, so its different than the make sure you do all these things different. What it said before now, it just went right to my gps point see where i am there in the middle of the hula park, a lot greener on the satellite imagery. So i know this is taking a while, but you just want to do this just so. You know its going to fly correctly right now, its saying returning so thats we dont definitely dont want that.
So lets hit the return to home button again there we go. So if you see returning on the top left of the screen, hit that return to home b button again to make sure it goes out of return to home, we want to be in position hold so thats. This switch all the way to the left and we have air speed again. So lets try that again, apparently every time you go into the app it has to do that so lets calibrate it and, by the way, guys this whole airspeed top fin here actually came off the glue out of the box. So a little bit of a con. There i went ahead and used my e6000, my favorite glue in the world and glued that back in and immediately green again. So you know sorry about the frustration there we go, so i tapped away from the screen and thats what its supposed to look like. Now we can go ahead and put in our camera because it says position hold up here: its got 13 satellites up there so were ready to put our um dji osmo action. Camera in remember, you can put anything you want like a gopro or whatever. So just sliding it in here basically recording in rock steady uh 4k mode yep, so you get some good stabilization, of course, make sure your lens is all clean. Before you put this thing on, i want to make that sucker, nice and tight there.
We go so were going to have this camera going and were going to have that camera im going to go ahead and turn on my wi fi tether and im going to throw this in the bag, so that my uh, the actual device on here, can actually Lock on to the wi fi, it is connected awesome, so pretty cool huh, how you can do that kind of stuff and were back in the app so lets launch this thing, even though, were getting a little bit of like 10 from this direction. Lets just see what happens left stick down and to the right there we go motors, go uh left, stick push up gaining some altitude and look at that, its fighting that way and coming from that direction a little bit up and down boy. So this is really gon na test, how it is hovering in like 10 right now, thats kind of cool, so lets just see how it hovers there. You know let off the sticks. Screen is looking great here. I can see where its at i can zoom in on the screen too. Look at this just pinching zooming, so lets spin. It you see the left stick basically kind of like youd yaw on a drone, so you could flat around like this all day. If you wanted just spinning like this a little bit when you spin it, of course, the winds gon na blow these wings around right, so its not gon na be as stable as a regular drone into the wind here, and you can see how the wind is Blowing it now thats about 10 right now a little getting a little unstable to be expected right because its got wings.
Now its blowing hard off the sticks and its just gon na hover there, and then, of course, we have our right stick right. So we can go forward still flying in multi rotor drone mode forward back lets see how fast it kind of goes in drone mode. Full stick forward see its not going to go into plane mode, its just going to keep that, like 30 degree maximum pulling back with the wind yeah that wind is really going to blow on it. So be careful guys if its really windy dont face it. Like perpendicular to the wind, if youre trying to float around flat around like a drone, so ill turn it like so its orientated to me like this, and we can also do rolling. Hopefully, yeah rolling left rolling right so a little interesting when it gets up to speed. So just want to be careful of that. Okay, so here we go well go up and then well switch into our fixed wing mode, so im pushing up on the control, get in some way lets see how it hangs on here, and we want to be above um. I think it is 20 meters, 30 meters, so looking at the bottom of the screen altitude 17 – i think you got to be like lets. Try it 21 lets see if it lets us. You got to press this a button here, not letting us. Okay got to go up to 30, i guess so.
Looking at the altitude bottom kind of middle of the screen there we go 30 meters pressing a not working holding a okay there. We go that suckers going now guys. I guess you got a whole day. Sorry about that, so let it fly that way now remember the left and right dont work on the throttle sticks. You know im moving this left and right. You have to move the right. Stick like what your um ailerons would be to turn. So here we go its going with the wind now man its. This is how it is guys um working in this like 10 mile per hour, wind, maybe even 15, sometimes so, im just doing a slow circle lets see how low we can kind of get pulling. The left, the left stick is lowering our speed ill. Have that up on the screen on the bottom were going 8.5 meters per second 9 meters per second, and you kind of would fly it just like a regular plane right. I can see my video on the bottom left of the screen. You see that and i can also see where the drone is on the map on the center of the screen. So it looks like it refreshes and then centers back on the drone when it goes out of the map ill have that up on the screen, so you guys can see that or you could always zoom out. You know what i mean: im zooming out right now, but look at this thing fly man were at 67 percent power, so it uses a lot of power when you are in um drone mode and just hovering in multi rotor mode, pushing forward on the right stick To try to go down in altitude, it looks like it might not actually go lower than 30 meters, while were in fixed wing mode lets.
Try it well come around one more time: im, just keeping it in line of sight for right now were going to do a range test on this thing. Remember guys and you can turn off that uh range limit. I think its set at like um 500 meters right now or something im gon na come right. Overhead and im pushing down forward on the right. Stick lets see how low it lets us go, not letting me go lower than 33 meters guys about 30 meters. So this isnt gon na be one where you can buzz yourself like really low or go really low. Okay, but look how easy this is thing is to fly ill circle around one more time. Oh that wind. Hopefully, you guys can kind of see it in my hat cam. I know its not the best camera but well circle around so were getting the full fixed wing experience here. Hopefully that uh osmo cam is doing good going into the wind im gon na full throttle. It up on the left, stick see how fast this thing can go. Keeping the controller pointed at it, 20 meters per second – and i just let off well – do a full hard right turn fantastic, remember its not like a manual craft. This is a gps, smart plane with the wind, its fighting. It, though this is pretty cool, lets get some altitude here so pulling back on the right stick. If you see my hat cam here, im pulling up and its automatically ramping the motors up to climb.
Remember: theres, no aileron, no flaps on this thing, so its using those four motors in order to do what it needs to do awesome but im having that flight experience. If i want to click on the video that streaming video look at that, i just clicked on it, but this is basically what that what im seeing on the screen is what the fpv is im going to come down. So im full stick forward on the right. Stick and you have to push full stick forward and then turn the right stick to the right. If you wanted to steer it right, if you want to steer and go down so pretty darn cool man, this thing is working great ill. Tell you what im going to do im going to circle around so pushing to the right the video is getting. You know a little pixelated lets come back guys and uh lets. Do a return to home, see how accurate it is and then well relaunch. I just dont want to use too much battery up. It looks like were 57, so im going that way with the wind, so its going way the heck over there into the pasture um b. If i hold b lets see if it returns to home nice. So its turning to the right automatically ive got 56 percent power left videos starting to get a little bit choppy there and lets just see like if it can come back right now.
Remember this doesnt have like a tiltable camera, so youre not going to be able to pitch this camera up and down its just fixed, so unless um, so that was one one of the things the parrot disco was awesome with it had an electronic eis stabilization camera That took like um 4k footage in a super wide 180 degree angle, and then it would let it electronically like zoom around. So you got the feeling of pitching up and down and stuff, although that was only um. 1080P was the maximum so cool, so it it came overhead. I really hope you guys can see this youll see it. When it comes down, it switched immediately to the sky into multi, rotor mode and its just coming down where it thinks it needs to land fighting the wind a little bit kind of spinning. You see that thats interesting kind of adjusting it. It may even be yeah. So its trying to get back to its original flight orientation, i think so it is now height. Yeah lets just let it land come on baby. It did it awesome. So there you go thats what you can kind of expect with this thing, that was great weve got 47 percent left, so im gon na launch again, but just remember, be in multi rotor mode. The least amount is possible if you really want to get efficient with this thing. This is basically one two. This is like four feet away, so thats going to get you in the vicinity im.
Okay, with that, you know, dji drones. I give them a hard time because theyre so so much more advanced and sometimes theyre the same way theyre about this far away. So, given that this is a vtol craft, i think that is incredibly awesome. Working really well. So lets launch again guys, as you can see, on the top left of the screen its in return mode still, so we got to get out of that by pressing b or holding b lets, try that again hold b yeah. I did hover this in my house. I kept it in quadcopter mode and it was really interesting when the battery got low. It went up to its return to home altitude and tried to come back and land, so this does have a low battery return to home, fail safe, so im going to launch again by holding the left, stick down and right and then pushing up on the throttle. Okay, so you got to make sure you do that really really important lets see if we can launch, maybe at a lower altitude im going to try a little lower im going to try it uh 15 meters. Okay, lets, try it so holding a wont. Do it up higher lets, try 20. okay, 21 22 holding a it. Does it at 20. whoa whoa, whoa whoa, it went back. It went back into it. That was weird okay lets. Try. That again looks like you definitely want to be at 30, because if it gets too low down and starts messing up that might happen, okay, holding a again wow.
That was really weird. Did you see that? Maybe because i was going the wrong direction there, we go lets be into the wind, so i just kind of orientated myself, so it was facing the wind and im going to go up and press a again holding a there. We go okay that time it went in so really youve got to be 30 meters or higher, or else it like hiccups and goes back into drone mode, apparently, okay, so anyway uh we got the video there on the screen ill. Have that up for you that im recording switch to the map and lets kind of zoom way out, okay, im just kind of flying out, maybe we will do kind of a range test, but i think um, the geo, the geo uh limit – is actually set right. Now lets not fly over that house there so lets see what happens if we hit that red line on the screen. Okay lets see if it tries to return home, okay, im, just kind of watching the video and im watching it crossing the line nice. So that is a return to home, fail, safe distance, so thats set by default. Okay, and if you look at the distance that was about four something: 500 meters, all right. So if we want to turn off return to home once it starts getting closer lets see if we can do that, its already returning home and landing trying to land thats, so cool man, you just dont – have to have a tiny little or a huge field to Launch this thing: if you dont, want to lets, try to shut off return to home by holding in b.
Well lets, try to click it once there we go, so you click it once to shut it off. Lets go into settings real, quick geo radius. You see that there you can go to 15 000. lets, try it check. Okay, we just said it anyway. Lets just keep flying until it has to tell us we have to land so holding a again yep going back into fixed swing mode thats. Just so awesome man, okay and look at this on the map, guys no more red ring at 500 meters that is fan diddlytastic isnt it thats, so darn, awesome 31 power left just gon na kind of turn around lets. Look at our video so were not flying over anybodys house and stuff um. This is just so cool. Maybe we will kind of do like a little bit of a range test here. So, as you can see, this camera thats on it for the fpv isnt that great a little pixelated, you know maybe ill put like a dji dji um fpv air camera on there. That would be kind of neat. I dont know if you can hear my mic, but the wind is its blowing on it. Pretty darn pretty darn hard right now, interesting how the um the percentage of the power went up to 32 percent, maybe when it went into fixed wing its drawing less power right. So it can do that. Thats awesome so were just cruising at like 42 meter altitude and im just going in a straight line.
Lets look at our map again approaching a thousand meters away and its apparently its efficient enough to know its um gaining battery power. Thats so interesting to me. So anyway, so tilting the right stick down to gain some altitude 50 meters, and you see how thats really the only way you can look up at the sky with this drone is when youre tilting the uh the drone up and down when youre flying, which is Kind of unfortunate, so uh gosh – i just have the controller – pointed to it. So here we go good. Little mini range test im going to do a full on one and at a 100 percent battery, but pressing to the right making sure this thing is flying okay, yeah its doing great 1.6 kilometers away – and you know the video is still kind of normal – how it Always is i just if you look at me how im holding this thing? I just have these antennas up kind of in a y ish pattern and im just pointing directly where i think the drone is perpendicular to the drone, and i do still have pretty darn good video 32 power so have that dji osmo action, camera recording, remember still So just doing fantastic man. I hope that battery percent is correct, but well be booking it with the wind, pretty darn quick, its cruising at 11, 12 meters per second bottom middle of the screen. You can see that im gon na pull down on the left throttle.
Look at this saving a bunch of power, its just trying to maintain its altitude and its cruising at 10. Meters per second see that letting off. So this is a far flying wing guys pretty far 2.4 kilometers see that on the bottom ish right of the screen, let me see if i can circle that with my drawing pen lets, try that out distance whoop right around there cool huh kind of in the Way with my controls, but uh yeah, thats thats it man, so i dont know if i want to go much further, but man that battery is so efficient when its in fixed wing mode. Oh, my goodness, and i still have control, bring up the map again. Theres. Our whole flight route, there looking awesome pressing on the video again on the bottom left. It just switches you out just like other drones, very, very cool. Turning to the right a bit. Oh, we just kind of lost video. You see that it locked up, but now its back, you can see kind of the west maui point over there, but looks like the video is getting extremely bad, so hopefully its going to come back soon. Um nope its not coming back yet so im going to go ahead and press return to home, getting a little choppy holding b lets see what it does. Oh, is there going to be a data transmission problem? I hope not youre getting a little bit scary, its not going into return to home right so kind of scaring me thats, not working tap it once oh thats.
Why gosh, i dont know why i was clicking and holding b and it wasnt going into return to home right guys, just reiterating that once i tapped it, look at this ill have this up turned around. You can see the graphic on the map fantastic. Coming back at us and its going to be flying freaking fast right now, 21 meters per second. This thing is going to come back quick because its going with the wind now, hopefully its maintaining altitude, yep 53 meters, its able to maintain it by just using the bottom or top motors to like pitch itself. Remember it has no flaps, no aileron flaps on the wings in order to just glide its always going to be having those motors on to do its pitching and its rolling for turning right. So lets see how straight this line is. Coming back looks fantastic. Look at that so um ill have up on the screen actually pop up how far this thing went. I wasnt looking at when i turned around, but i think that was that must have been around uh three or so four kilometers before the video. The video seemed to start chopping out when i turned that way a little. So you know antenna orientation changed on the craft, so lets just see how this thing does its maintaining its height fantastic back into the video, hopefully that uh dji osmo action cam is still recording great on the front there 29 power, so my goodness doing really really Well, lets go back into the map, a pretty darn good straight line.
You can see how its kind of um walking a little bit where it looks like its pointing to the right into the wind a little, because the wind is coming from this direction and the drones out there. So it looks like its kind of walking. Turning to the right and just maintaining that straight line path or trying to at least slight yeah, actually not a hiccup, i was looking at the other line on the way out, but look how straight that line is coming all the way to our home point. So i think this is gon na be the final run guys for this thing, not even using up the battery to its fullest, were gon na save that for the range test, but so far just fantastic man now its blowing 15 to 20.. So lets hope this thing when it goes into its multi copter mode, that wind isnt just freaking, hammering it and it slides back too far. I might have to go get it if it does that there it is coming right at me. Boom switched into vertical takeoff in landing mode and watch that thing come down. Lets see it thats great how it just knows to fight the wind. It wants to fight to keep that spot. That gps point. It knows where that home point is and its going to fight and do whatever it has to do to land somewhere near it. You know its going to tell those motors no push this way.
Push that way turn spin. Whatever you got to do to make me land on that point, low power status, please fly carefully came up, so it looks like it comes up at maybe 25 is what its set up and, of course you can change all that stuff guys, but i did remember, I was saying i did test it in my house or outside my house in my yard, and it did a return to home when it thought it. Didnt have enough power. Whoa yeah the winds really coming off. Look at it spinning it around whoa, im gon na okay, getting wonky here, nope it! Actually, it was able to fix itself. I thought it might crash, but im going to leave it come on baby touch. Yes, it figured out, it was landed, so it cut most of the power and then it just shuts off the propellers so as usual ill have all this stuff down description down below. So you can check out the links. Go to the website. Tell me what you think in the description uh in the comments actually of what you thought about this flight, if it performed how you thought it would better worse kind of farther back than where i normally do. My range test im normally like right up not up not behind a fence and stuff, so that actually did a lot better than i thought it would kind of a bonus how the wind came up and im going to tell you right now, its 15 to 20.
. It really is blowing more than id normally launch, even a regular drone flight test, and this thing could handle it. Lets do a quick pros and cons. Do not switch into fixed wing mode if youre like lower than 20 meters or 20 meters or actually 30 meters, because what seemed to happen is it could switch into it at 20? But then i think it has like a fail safe, where, if it for some reason gets is under 30 itll go back into multi rotor mode and that started getting really wonky. It started like chattering and i was like almost thought it was going to crash, and then i went up to a little bit past 30 and had no problem switching into fixed wing mode when it flipped up that one time the last landing it actually looked like It might have lost gps. I think there was a 3d lock warning pop up here. So if you do have a camera like this on the front just be ready for it to maybe when it gets ready to land, it may get kind of finicky with that. Gps, because the antenna is now sideways right, preferably you want those gps tenants facing up towards the satellites, but when it turns sideways youre like cutting off most of your antenna radiation array there, you know the the whole cone where it can see the satellites in the Sky, so just be wary of that. I almost took over worst case scenario.
You can switch this over to attitude mode where it shuts off the position lock and then you can just fly it without any gps help. The two right positions are both altitude hold. Only no gps, lock all the way to the left is the gps. Lock controls work fantastic. It felt just like a parrot disco, speeding up slowing down it would maintain whatever speed. Even if you pulled down to slow down as much as possible, it would maintain the speed it needed to to keep the altitude which you could just monitor on the bottom of your screen, so that was also fantastic, just controlling rolling and all that stuff. You know it has a limited roll, because this is like a drone plane with gps, so its not going to let you do spins, loops and stuff. We did do some full throttle runs. You know just basically when its in fixed wing mode just punch that sucker and we got going pretty quick, remember i was able to change the geo radius. Maximum radius of 15 000 feet a little bit of a con here in the settings. You cannot change to imperial units, so i have to just look at the meters. A lot of you guys in other places of the world are going to love that. But for me you know i like seeing my feet miles mile per hour and all that stuff and it looks like we cannot do that, even in american hand, control mode, hopefully with some updates.
This thing can be pretty awesome, um pretty satisfied. So far, though man, this looks like its gon na be one of my next favorite. Well, my only favorite vtol aircraft stay tuned were probably going to do some mods on this guy maybe put that dji fpv camera in there.