Registering the Drones


We got a little snow in the neighborhood… This shot is from the Syma X5C-1 drone — a small model NOT required to be registered.

Hello friends and welcome!  Lately on the blog there has not been a lot of drone activity but today presented a perfect opportunity to take a photo of the neighborhood.  We received about 4-5 inches of sleet and snow yesterday.  It was cool to get the little Syma X5C-1 out and do a little flying.  Then I decided to see what’s needed for the drone registration initiative.

The new FAA rules require that owners conform to flight rules and that larger drones carry a registration number on their bodies.  This does not apply to the little Syma drone but it does affect the other one I own – the Syma X8C.  The X8C is bigger, can fly a little higher and longer, and weighs quite a bit more.  It could really hurt a person if it crashed.

FAA Drone License

Registration is cheap – just $5 – and until January 20th, it’s refundable.  You simply log onto the FAA’s site for UAS (Unmanned Aircraft System), provide name / address / phone etc. and then make a payment.  The FAA emails a certificate to print.  A unique number is assigned to the holder and it must be written on any of the qualifying drones (between .55 lbs and 55lbs).  The whole process is actually quite painless.

I’m a pretty responsible drone owner but have managed to lose a couple of $60 drones before.  The smaller ones aren’t too dangerous – even at point blank range.  But the regulated quadcopters (I.E. the “Phantom Drone” and other large models) are heavy and can cause significant personal and property damage.  Those are the drones that cause so many problems for emergency personnel, stadiums, and even the White House.  By tracking the drone owners the flight rules can be enforced.  The penalties for violations can be expensive and end up in jail time.  It’s about time.

If the new regulations help alleviate some problems, I’m all for the effort.  But just like guns, the people who are going to cause issues probably are not the folks who wish to “play by the rules.”  Oh well… Add one more certification to the list: amateur radio license, chauffeur’s license, pilot’s license, concealed carry permit, and now… “Small UAS Certificate of Registration” .  The wallet is getting thicker in the front but thinner in the money area!  😀

Christmas Border2a

Thanks for stopping by today!  Now that the weather has calmed a bit, I’m still looking at doing some camping over New Year’s… perhaps the last outing for the winter.  It should be a peaceful, relaxing time.  Take care!  The next post will come in 2016.

Have a Happy New Year!

Bradford, Jesse James, and Kitty Jen-Jen
Jones County, Iowa

About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"
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2 Responses to Registering the Drones

  1. shadowmoss says:

    I’m a former ham radio operator, and former student pilot. A few Microsoft certifications, but those aren’t really in the same league. I’ll be working today and tomorrow, covering in our 24/7/365 shop for the younger folks who have plans to party. I’ll probably snuggling with the kitties at midnight.

    • VanTrekker says:

      Snuggling with the kitties would have been fun last night! I was alone, the only person in a campground up north. It was down to around 5 degrees or so with wind all night. I envy you the evening! (I did get to play with the dog at the trout hatchery and had a lot of fun). 2016 is a new year and I’m hoping to do more cleaning… starting with some fish this afternoon. 🙂

      Have a great new year!