Skywalker Fly-away $#^$@!

Lost the Skywalker with the Gopro 3 Black and Mobius cameras a-blazing yesterday.    The first indication I was having a problem was the LCD screen on the monitor blacking out.  At this point the plane was not flying very high nor far.. probably not more than 80′ up. The control response were also squishy but I was able to manage to align the plane on the field for a landing but was coming in too high and decided to make another round which was a mistake, at this point even the EzUHF transmitter shut down. This could mean 2 things either the 12v BEC I used for power distribution for the EzUHF transmitter, monitor, DVR and VRx has failed or the LiPO has discharged.  Running back to the field tent to get a spare battery I saw the plane do an RTL and do at least one circle over the launch area.. so far so good.  Couldnt find the spare battery for the transmitter and decided to disconnect the rest of the electronics and just power the ezuhf, at this point I can still the hear the buzzing plane above.. then silence.

Went around surrounding area for a couple of hours but couldn’t find it.

Lessons for this one:

1)  VERIFY, VERIFY that the transmitter battery is at least at 90%.. this is the 3rd flight I made for the day and I remember starting with about 80% (I’m using a Tiger 4S 2800), usually I charge this the night before but not yesterday =(  Checking the battery after showed it was only generating 11.1v.  I completely under-estimated the power drain by the system.
2) Nevertheless, the APM2.6 seems to have gone on a fail safe which dropped to the RTL. I was expecting the plane to loiter above after reaching ‘home’ waiting for a signal (or the battery drains) but this did not happen.  The correct behaviour should have been with long RC signal loss, the APM 2.6 should loiter or RTL and Circle and not make do a hardware fail safe, either that OR the ESC has fail-safe’d, and finally;
3)  At the first sign of power and control issues…land!

G R O A N.