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Old 03-26-2008, 05:08 PM   #26
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my apologies Vortex for not reading the post properly. I thought "blime me this guy is good " and was wondering what it took to become that good. i dont own a heli yet but intend to buy one this summer as flying planes is not as challenging as before. My choice is JP twister 3d storm and a proper heli radio. After doing a bit of reading i decided against the fixed pitch helis and RTFs as the electronics tend to be substandard. Been practising hard on sim and feel cautiously confident. My main concern is setting the thing up properly but if anyone got advice against buy this heli my ears are wide open
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Old 03-27-2008, 03:55 AM   #27
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Well to be fair I can do basic circuits and figure 8's (properly not tail in) and fast forward flight now, as well as hover in all orientations. That alone has some people here saying "gosh I wish I could do that".

I'm ok with precision landing but only in tail in, with all other orientations I need slightly more flat area, tail in I'm comfortable landing with the tail hanging off the platform I'm landing on.

As for picking fixed pitched for your first heli, I have to say there's nothing wrong with that they are alot easier to fix when they crash. I know that I paid the most in my first month of flight now the flights are getting cheaper, alot cheaper. As for setting up your heli, it's better once you have your heli to get us to coach you. I can post numerous articles now but like me when I first got into it, If I can't do it right away I forgot the good advice.

The only final advice I would lay upon you is don't strike heli's that have been pre-owned off your list. Even if they need a little repair. The key things to look at when buying a 2nd hand heli is: are the servos electronics and motor in good condition. Those end up being most of your cost, if there are damages on the heli you can use it as a bargain point don't think the heli is unusable just because you need to order more parts for it.

Usually when you aquire used you get enough parts to last you until your 2nd or 3rd crash. Most items on fixed pitch and even smaller CP heli's are so rediculously cheap you wouldn't lose sleep over it.

So why do I suggest used? Used heli's don't come setup right out of the box (well not guaranteed) so this forces you to take everything apart and to actually inspect everything, something that no new owner does with a new heli. This inspection period I would say is a pre-requisite for heli owners you must be able to take apart all the components of your bird for a full inspection and rebuild.

One thing you should expect with used heli's however is that the batteries are usually always dead when you get them very few people keep batteries well maintained and when you get them used the transport period usually finishes them off. Be prepared to buy another pack.

The final reason is you can get into a class of heli's you normally wouldn't be able to afford or would be scared to buy as a first timer. Why is this good? Well as a first timer if you heli was prestine you would be scared to do anything to damage it. If you knew it went through a few crashes already and it was cheap you'd have more courage or feel less tense when flying those first few flights. This makes a huge difference in your learning curve, alot of pilots get scared and then put their heli's on the shelf never to be touched again. Getting a heli that had been crashed before you don't feel as bad about crashing and crash you will. But with the spares you'll undoubtedly get with the purchase you'd be less concerned. This in effect stops you from giving up on the hobby before you even gave it a chance as I've observed a few pilots that bought a far to expensive first time machine do.
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Old 03-27-2008, 12:55 PM   #28
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Gosh, I wish I could do that!

I've got crashing and rebuilding down pat, and can hover tail in pretty good. My biggest problem is lack of flying room to work on side in, then nose in hovering.

Gotta agree with you on the afraid to crash thing. I almost didn't take my Blade 400 out last Friday because I did a number on my HBFP and didn't feel like bringing home two broken birds. But a guy I was with said, "Are you gonna fly it or just look at it?", so I flew it and made it through the whole pack without crashing (go me! ).

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Old 03-27-2008, 04:23 PM   #29
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Nice work BPD! If you don't fly, you won't get better! I just picked up G4 and downloaded the T-rex 450SE V2. Very realistic! And this way I can practise and not drop so much coin. BUT, it will not replace my flight time (just add to it).

" The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly. 'Tis dearness only that gives everything its value" - Thomas Paine
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Old 03-27-2008, 04:48 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by HeliG View Post
Nice work BPD! If you don't fly, you won't get better! I just picked up G4 and downloaded the T-rex 450SE V2. Very realistic! And this way I can practise and not drop so much coin. BUT, it will not replace my flight time (just add to it).
Thanks, HeliG!

I'd love to get a good simulator, but none of the good ones are available for Mac and probably won't be for quite some time, if ever. If I wanted to get G4 I'd have to build a PC to go along with it and that gets really expensive.

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Old 03-27-2008, 05:17 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by bassplayinDude View Post
Thanks, HeliG!

I'd love to get a good simulator, but none of the good ones are available for Mac and probably won't be for quite some time, if ever. If I wanted to get G4 I'd have to build a PC to go along with it and that gets really expensive.
I'm Mac-illiterate, but I know that several people running macs have reported success running G4 on their machines via Bootcamp. IIRC the catch is that it only works for the Intel-based macs. I don't know if this helps you but thought it might be worth mentioning.

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Old 03-27-2008, 06:47 PM   #32
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Yea, I know about BootCamp, but my iMac is from 2004, before the Intel switch. I do have an Intel MacBook, but the integrated GPU isn't up to the task of G4, and I'd still have to drop $$$ for a full copy of Windows, which is $2-300 by itself.

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Old 03-28-2008, 05:05 PM   #33
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Oh well, I tried. Sorry that doesn't help. I did read something recently about a mac sim that was for helis only (no airplanes) and was purported to be very good. If I find the details, I'll post it.

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Old 03-28-2008, 06:51 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by buzzbomber View Post
Oh well, I tried. Sorry that doesn't help. I did read something recently about a mac sim that was for helis only (no airplanes) and was purported to be very good. If I find the details, I'll post it.
Well, once Apple gets off their butt and updates their Java implementation to the latest available version, Heli-X will run. Unfortunately for me this update seems to still be in early beta stage for 64 bit Intel Macs only.

There is a sim put out by www.alphamacsoftware.com but I really want the tutorials and other functions of the more mainstream simulators out there.

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Old 03-29-2008, 01:48 AM   #35
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here's the deal.

wake up early; take cover off of trailer; dewinterize, plug in shore power; check to see if systems are okay.

cat goes to vet at 11:00.

put blade 400 battery on charger; eat lunch; jury rig training gear. do a slight hover and call it a day. might burn some batteries on cx2 though. i luv that little guy.

and of course buy some more batteries for the big guy.

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Old 03-29-2008, 01:58 AM   #36
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neil,
Did you just get your 400? I had not seen a post saying you bought it. Congrats if you did. And hopefully your second flight won't be like mine.

" The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly. 'Tis dearness only that gives everything its value" - Thomas Paine
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Old 03-29-2008, 03:26 AM   #37
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Just got a replacement battery from my blade CP... unfortunately this isn't putting much confidence for me into esky cells. On first charge the battery started expanding, I don't know if return to manufacturer is a possibility as with these hong kong companies it might be better just to get another cell..... Don't know if esky has a reputation for producing lame EK1-0180 cells. Anyways I'll go with another better known GWS brand next time.
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Old 03-29-2008, 07:14 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by HeliG View Post
neil,
Did you just get your 400? I had not seen a post saying you bought it. Congrats if you did. And hopefully your second flight won't be like mine.
I had one of your "second flights" on my Blade 400 two days ago. Just got back from the LHS with my $45 bag o' parts and am working up the will to rebuild it.

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Old 03-29-2008, 08:13 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by bassplayinDude View Post
I had one of your "second flights" on my Blade 400 two days ago. Just got back from the LHS with my $45 bag o' parts and am working up the will to rebuild it.
BPD,
I'm sorry to hear about your flight but I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one! I think you got away cheap with $45!

" The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly. 'Tis dearness only that gives everything its value" - Thomas Paine
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Old 03-29-2008, 09:19 PM   #40
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i had 3 flights today. each lasted 2 seconds, each were no more than 1/2" off the ground. up/down, up/down/, up/down. i survived with no broken parts. my toe got hit with tail rotor. it drew blood.

seriously: the power this thing generates with a battery is amazing. now i see how the swash plate moves when slight throttle is given which gives the pitch.

now, i am going to go through manual and go through settings on controller and see how things work.

when i throttle down heli spins around for some reason. the blade tracking is off slightly. the heading lock gyro is not working, i think.

this is just like when i first bought cx2. hover is the only thing on the menu i should be thinking about.

neil
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Old 03-29-2008, 09:31 PM   #41
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Neil,
Don't fiddle fart around. Get the heli on the ground in an open space, spool up slowly and push the throttle to max!

" The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly. 'Tis dearness only that gives everything its value" - Thomas Paine
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Old 03-29-2008, 09:35 PM   #42
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i got $500 reasons not to.

lol
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Old 03-30-2008, 08:49 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by HeliG View Post
BPD,
I'm sorry to hear about your flight but I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one! I think you got away cheap with $45!
I guess it's cheap compared to your crash, but my repairs bills are going up instead of down. I think I'm gonna try to hunt down my club's heli instructor (just joined the club this month) before I put it up in the air again. I'll still practice on the HBFP though.

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Old 03-30-2008, 10:11 PM   #44
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I bought the G4 simulator and then downloaded the Trex 450SE V2 heli and I know that it will save me money in the long run! I can't even imagine trying to do 3D (not yet) without having a sim to perfect it on first. And the G4 has tutorials to teach you how to do all the stuff from hover to freaky acrobatics.

" The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly. 'Tis dearness only that gives everything its value" - Thomas Paine
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Old 03-30-2008, 11:35 PM   #45
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Default info for newbies WHERE?

#1 problem in RC copters is simply: wheres the beef?
- try finding info on these things is nearly impossible, unless customers review them.

Some things I've learned so far:
It's NEVER RTF - always inspect the machine before take first flight, and you should go against a comparative chart made by the pros so you can get the most out of it without needing a ton of spare parts; RC copters are way more expensive to fly than planes due to hundreds of added pieces and usually out of the range of most hobbyists.
USE simulation software if you've never flown anything before: this helps you get a feel for how your copter is supposed to feel and fly before you fly it. So when controls respond, you know they are...or aren't.
Training kits...the ball things on the ground really aren't that effective, they are only good if you are going up and down to save the copter from a dangerous loss of power. I can't see the use of them on the more high performance copters as their drag causes unpredictable results. But I do recommend them on the middle range copters for beginners and they will save some headaches in the long run.
NEVER buy the 'top of line' copter first...always buy a cheap one (but my luck has only been with one copter out of 3 radically different types; the "Fly Dragonfly" which is only a 2channel but is extremely hardy and excellent for learning (but you'll want at least a 3channel to begin with which bring me to the next one)
DON'T buy anything less than 3channel..and don't expect more channels is better, 3-4 usually is good enough for nearly all the fun one would expect in RC copter piloting, 6 channels usually is only for aerobatics (inverted flight) and really not something even for intermediate users to attempt without at least a few hours of actual flying time logged.
BEFORE you order any kit, order spare parts with it, or you'll be sitting around waiting for them, more than using your copter; look at it this way, eventually you'll have to replace many pieces. Blades, rotor heads, tail booms, all combined aren't cheap so it's even better to find a copter that's been stripped of all the electronics and use it for spare parts (if you can find them).
WIND is a HUGE factor in RC helicopters..don't let a light breeze fool you, it can pick up very fast sometimes so check weather conditions before you head out, or stick to an area with adequate wind breakers (trees, buildings); having your copter drift out of range is no fun chasing around.
I'm sure I missed a few newbie basics here..but I think this may help out others in the future get a bit more of out it. Of RC'ers it is a very difficult hobby.sport so don't be frustrated thinking it's not supposed to break; they ALL break.
The manuals these things come with aren't very good either, and don't even cover any sort of troubleshooting problems one encounters with these copters.
My copters are a mosquito (in the shop/gyro shot)
a flydragon fly NO9093 (broken brades but very sturdy/excellent beginner copter)
and an ESKY honeybee Cp2 (EK1H-E005) (experts ONLY-POS rotor heads - don't buy this copter it's a nightmare-spend more for a t-rex which has an all metal rotor system -plastic and high speeds don't mix)
I've logged about 4 hours in the flydragon fly and zero on the others due to crashes/breakage...You'd think that they'd make just a little bit stronger without jacking up the price into the several hundred dollar range..

Hope this info can help some people out; wish I had it before I started.
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Old 03-31-2008, 12:28 AM   #46
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Honestly buying a heli that doesn't break on impact is no fun.

Seriously the more powerful the heli, the more likely you'll have breakages.

If your measure of how crash resistant a heli is your metric of how good it is. Let me remind you that TREX's are know to disintegrate on impact....

Also for the newbies out there just remember every one crashes even Alan Szabo (one of the world's best)


T-Rex crash...

(somehow I believe the number of pieces my blade CP would end up with is less.)
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Old 03-31-2008, 01:12 AM   #47
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Default esky versus t rex (plastic vs metal rotar sets)

I really don't know a whole lot about trex having never actually owned one; however I did notice that they did have a metal solution which seems to be one of the better reasons to have it...(least many of the models I nearly bought)
How hard is it to custom re-engineer these parts?...It's really as if these copters were built using metallic only gear then watered down using plastic pieces to lessen costs...but many parts that should be metallic aren't in the ESKY HB2CP; like the rotor heads, which would such a cheap fix in metal; but makes this copter basically worthless elsewise...
I was even thinking of modifying my FLYdragon ..maybe with an extra rotor somehow..which would allow it forward/backwards controls...
as of now...i wish i could take those two copters and smash them into one nice one; i dunno but it seems the cheaper copters have a lot of better features (like more expensive landing skids and tail booms and blades) while the esky HBcp2 uses wooden blades which are a joke...but I'm thinking of finding some sort of adhesive that will make them stronger..any suggestions here? how particular or interchangable are blades?...it seems that many blades from one should work one another..is this true? do you know of any blades besides the two types (wooder and carbon fibre-very expensive) I could find for the esky that would work just as well as the recommended blades?...I see tons of nice plastic blades out there...something has to match up close to it.

I have seen many trex's in flight; but not much about after crash reports; when it crashes do you need to have a bag of parts with you or can most of them be rebuilt? What is the best metal rotor heli out there for the price?..is getting a glue gun worth it?
is launching from the grass a bad idea even though it's softer?
(due to blades catching in the grass).
Is there any 'better than average nearly crash proof copter" other than my 2channel flydragonfly out there Why are the skids of the more expensive helicopters more fragile than the cheaper ones?..what is up with that? part of the reason the flydragonfly is so durable is simply the skids are a healthy dose of plastic, not this super thin thing that would snap if a frog burped on it...
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Old 03-31-2008, 01:31 AM   #48
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I have plastic blades on my blades CP the blades don't break anymore.... however here's the thing Every helicopter needs an engineered point of failure. The fact is when your helicopter goes down something needs to break. If you make everything strong then instead of a simple break all parts simply shatter from stress.

Before the plastic blades I was running wood and I would lose the blades. Now i don't lose the blades but some random part always goes on a crash since the blades are stronger something else has to give.

Luckily the parts that give, the spindle the shaft, etc always cost less than a new set of blades.
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Old 03-31-2008, 02:42 AM   #49
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Default stress points in copters

that's just it, the engineers don't take stress points into account...if they did
the parts WOULD fly off, but not break into pieces...i'm sure an all steel construction like the real thing would yield less actual damage upon impacts. But really I don't know you could very well be right, but I do notice a big difference in my two copter's designs. As said...it's like the more expensive ones are specifically more designed to shatter...which is sorta..reverse what you would expect from a manufacturer, least historically; chinese have an interesting way of building things.
I'm thinking of using a wax cast method to remake these parts in clay, especially things like the blades...real blades are made with ceramics, why not these...their are new clays out there that require low thermal bake points so you can pop them into the oven and they'll work as good as carbon fiber blades or used to strengthen the balsa wooden ones.
I have noticed their are critical stress points specifically designed to help the copter from shattering, but if they aren't taken advantage off and use inferior parts, other parts suffer instead.
What I really want to know is; do all metal copter rigs exist cheaply for electrical? And if they do (I think I've seen one under 200bucks), are they worth it?...It's like you expect certain parts of the helicopter to break on impart, but when it shatters, something seems wrong in the overall engineering to me. When i land hard, i expect the skids to take a beat, but not the blades..or when the blades catch something..not the skids...
but it seems with mine..the blade will catch..or the skid will catch..and both break together...which shows it's a fragile craft because my other one (which is a much cheaper FlyDragonFly, isn't like this at all..I can literally KICK IT 2 feet in the air..and it will hold together just fine..looking for another flight..(i don't recommend it - but it shows its hardiness)
The mosquito is similar, totally fragile, I was able to get it flying a little, but it's so hard to stablize without a set of training skids - this is where I highly recommend the training skids..trying to set the gyros right because mosquito gyros are real touchy IMO...
what about the glue gun..ever try that?
what kinda wood you use..balsa..or something stronger..can you use a polymer coating on that to strengthen it?
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Old 03-31-2008, 03:52 AM   #50
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Well I'm currently running extruded plastic ABS plastic which is a tiny bit flexible hence it won't break. I've also had good luck with my fibreglass ones. Carbon fiber ones are fragile though they chip easily.

My recommendation is if you do get an all metal head, examine it visualize the stress points that occur during impact. Then make sure somewhere down that chain you replace something with a cheap plastic part. It'll cost you less in the long run.

This is equivalent to putting a fuse on things and we do that all the time.
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