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Mapping Cost?

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I only get asked a couple of times a year to do mapping. I was hoping to find the least expensive means to deliver to client. Any suggestions would be helpful.
 
I only get asked a couple of times a year to do mapping. I was hoping to find the least expensive means to deliver to client. Any suggestions would be helpful.
What are the deliverables and accuracy that you are required to deliver?
 
Do you know about DroneDeploy.com, UgCS.com, or other mapping engines? They're around $1000 a year to subscribe.

If you've got unix admin skills, OpenDroneMap.org is an open-source mapping engine.

Be careful how you describe your services or use of tools like these. 'Map' and 'survey' are protected terms and require an engineer or surveyor proper credentials.
 
If you've got unix admin skills, OpenDroneMap.org is an open-source mapping engine.
You don't need to have Unix admin skills for WebODM, just a couple of $ ($57 or $147, depending on your choice of installation support) for the installer option (if you're comfortable with Unix, then there is a completely free version) and be able to follow directions on the installation and associated requirements. I was able to install it without a problem.
 
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You don't need to have Unix admin skills for WebODM, just a couple of $ ($57 or $147, depending on your choice of installation support) for the installer option (if you're comfortable with Unix, then there is a completely free version) and be able to follow directions on the installation and associated requirements. I was able to install it without a problem.

Thanks for this advice! I'll go looking for support options, hadn't see them yet. I'm an elderly unix admin, assumed WebODM was as challenging an install as other open source apps can be, am planning to rig a server for WebODM later this summer, will appreciate any help I can get, especially if it's reasonably priced.

I think DroneDeploy's reasonably priced for what they do, but would be happy to drop them and use my own mapping engine if I can make it work.
 
You'll probably need to use WebODM in conjunction with some other software (for example QGIS) to get to the product (-s) you need/want, depending on what you're doing.

Of course, the rabbit hole gets deeper. To be able to validate / rectify your 2D/3D imagery/models you'll need Ground Control Points (GCP's) that are accurately recorded, you'll need good aerial markers like this or like this but the marked ones are probably preferable (also consider the carrying bag with pegs, it's very handy), nothing stops you from making your own though. From what I can tell EMLID has the most cost effective survey grade GNSS solutions on the market, check them out, especially their forum as sometimes you'll find 2nd hand gold there. If you're using the Inspire 1 or Inspire 2 you'll need 2x Reach RS units (they're older but useful) or 2x Reach RS+ units, the Reach RS2 is an option (currently the latest and greatest they have on offer) but it can get pretty expensive then. Get either two rover poles with the steadies, or 1x rover pole with a tribrach for the two GNSS (base & rover) units.

If you're using a camera that doesn't have a mechanical (leaf) shutter (Inspire 2 x4s has mechanical shutter and is 20MP, so win/win situation if you use that camera) you should consider planning missions carefully as the motion blur will distort your product, fly no faster than 5m/s set shutter speed to 1/1000, preferably stop at each picture location. Check overlaps, generally 70/70 should be considered minimum overlap, most people prefer 75/75 but it seems WebODM likes 83/83 overlap for best results. Rolling shutter cameras can be used, but it slows down the process by a lot and can introduce additional problems if you're not careful. Hence why the Phantom 4 Pro V2 (20MP mechanical shutter camera) is so popular for this application.

Your camera angle settings will differ depending on whether you're only doing an orthomosaic or if you have structures to record. So will your flying patterns for the various kinds of missions.

*** EDIT ***
WebODM has a "Lighting" version these days, this makes use of AWS from what I can tell and isn't really free any longer as the server time needs to be paid, stick to the regular local install WebODM if you're wanting to minimize expenditure.
 
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I only get asked a couple of times a year to do mapping. I was hoping to find the least expensive means to deliver to client. Any suggestions would be helpful.

Be careful with the term "map." That term comes with a LOT of expectations. Don't confuse the term "mosaic" with "map." A "map" will require survey-grade accuracy and can get you into legal trouble if you try to pass a mosaic off as a map.

Good luck!

D
 
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Be careful with the term "map." That term comes with a LOT of specifications. Don't confuse the term "mosaic" with "map." A "map" will require survey-grade accuracy and can get you into legal trouble if you try to pass a mosaic off as a map.

Good luck!

D
Mapping and surveying are regulated at the state level, and they aren't the same from one area to another in what is allowed. Research the regs in your state.
 
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Install Vbox for free then buy the iso and install it there. Very easy to use no big hassles installing other software and making it build as per the usual Linux annoyances.
Well worth the $60 just buy the iso. I had no need for support.
If you’re running windows 10 pro you can also use hyper V for free which is actually better than Vbox.
 
Mapping and surveying are regulated at the state level, and they aren't the same from one area to another in what is allowed. Research the regs in your state.
The OP doesn't say what country he is in.
Why assume he is talking about the USA?
 

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