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Old 07-18-2014, 06:46 AM   #1
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Default Cheap 325-335 Blades?

So, I had a dumb thumb moment with the 450x, not because I didn't know what I was supposed to do, but my thumbs decided they wanted something else. Damage is about $25 shipped, not counting blades and canopy. I decided to get Fusuno combo, comprised of 325mm blades, red fins and a red fiber glass canopy, about the same price as the stock blades would have been. What are some good cheaper blades though, for the future, glass fiber or carbon fiber, 325 or 335? The stock ones are really 335, and the ones I am getting will be a tad shorter, but I was told it won't make much difference, just a bit less snap in performance, and a slight decrease in stability likely.
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:12 AM   #2
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Not sure what cheap means.....but here's a site that has inexpensive blades.....and may ship outside of the U.S. cheap......:

http://www.rcplanet.com/RC_Helicopte...des_s/5276.htm

Otherwise, stick with Align or Align after-market clone OEM parts (to include rotor blades).....with blades, balancing is critical...if you don't have a balancing gauge (tool), you'll soon wish you had one....!

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Old 07-18-2014, 08:27 AM   #3
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I'll probably just make up a balancing device, may buy one at some point, already spending too much. Are CF blades the best to go for, or would glass fiber suit me just fine for basic flight?
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:52 AM   #4
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When I was first getting a feel for things.....many moons ago, I stuck with Align wooden. Just made sure they were balanced properly......much less cost and during that "learning" level, the performance is not a factor.

The glass/fiber blades are fine, but still less forgiving than wood and more balance sensitive after being shaved down from prop stikes.

Remember, glass and or CF do not crack (bevel) or "polish" on strike........CF just explodes, fiberglass chips and ravels.....making both difficult to re-balance or use a 2nd time safely....!

I only used carbon fiber blades after my pilot skills reached "0" prop strikes and I had "total" command of the bird......"total" command being able to invert hold hover at 10' above ground......no fancy tic-tocs, piro's, hurricanes, switch-backs.....just "basic" invert and hold with authority!........I've never claimed to be or intended to become a 3D master.......my physical/mental reponses were way past developing skills needed for "true" 3D flight.......I started with 450's at the age of 55....but that's not what I drive.......

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Old 07-18-2014, 08:58 AM   #5
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I was reading some mixed feelings on wood and glass fiber. The wood is said to be only okay at lower headspeeds, perhaps becoming dangerous. Lower headspeed also seems to be more difficult, giving you less control. With the glass fiber, some were saying that the fact they are stronger causes more parts to break at strikes, thus costing more than a set of CF blades in the end.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:04 AM   #6
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Yeah, those pesky thumbs with a mind of their own are a real problem when flying helis

Like i said when you were looking at buying options, with a 450's dont give you a lot of thinking time, they are quite challenging, they need fast reactions and those reactions must be correct.

For blades Hobbyking have a lot of choice many available from the US warehouse: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...300_399mm.html
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:15 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
I was reading some mixed feelings on wood and glass fiber. The wood is said to be only okay at lower headspeeds, perhaps becoming dangerous. Lower headspeed also seems to be more difficult, giving you less control. With the glass fiber, some were saying that the fact they are stronger causes more parts to break at strikes, thus costing more than a set of CF blades in the end.
I would not discount that.....however, learning at "lower" head speeds (just how much lower is a personal choice) saves other frustrations related to respone and reaction time during distress.

Any blade stike can damage head, main, tail rotor rear and linkage.....regardless of the blade material.......!.....I'd still rather have a chunk of wood flying at me at less velocity rather than a piece of CF or glass (I may not see) buzzing around the air space I'm in.......while I'm still not in command of the bird......pick your poison....

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Old 07-18-2014, 09:16 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Yeah, those pesky thumbs with a mind of their own are a real problem when flying helis

Like i said when you were looking at buying options, with a 450's dont give you a lot of thinking time, they are quite challenging, they need fast reactions and those reactions must be correct.

For blades Hobbyking have a lot of choice many available from the US warehouse: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...300_399mm.html
Are the blades that HK offer good? Actually the crash happened when landing. I was bringing it down, it was a little too close to the curb in the large area I was flying. I knew to bring it to the right to get it where I wanted for a landing. The heli's right side was facing me, my thumbs decided that the direction to go was towards me, and moving the stick backwards was towards me. It certainly didn't come towards me, and I just didn't correct with the right movement either. Other than blades, the repairs aren't bad at all. A missing link, stripped gear, and a broken tail rotor hub. Oh, all servos except tail, which is why I am going to use some Hitec HS65's.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:22 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by pizzano View Post
I would not discount that.....however, learning at "lower" head speeds (just how much lower is a personal choice) saves other frustrations related to respone and reaction time during distress.

Any blade stike can damage head, main, tail rotor rear and linkage.....regardless of the blade material.......!.....I'd still rather have a chunk of wood flying at me at less velocity rather than a piece of CF or glass (I may not see) buzzing around the air space I'm in.......while I'm still not in command of the bird......pick your poison....
So I would be best learning on lower headspeeds? Seems it increases flight time too. I'm still trying to figure out what -100 to 100 curves translate to from 0 - 100.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:26 AM   #10
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Not a big fan of HK heli parts (or any other HK product).......just a personal preference of myself and many of my flying buddies......to many other great options out there, especially if you lean towards quality like Align or equal........given, being in Calif. gives me many more options here state side.....I realize it's a problem out side of the U.S.

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Old 07-18-2014, 09:27 AM   #11
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That actually sounds like a lot of damage, it must have hit pretty hard.

I keep an open mind on HK products, some are junk, many are perfectly ok. Often when you buy elswhere you are getting the exact same product but you just pay more for it (which doesnt improve quality at all). I've used the HK blades and they were ok after balancing. You cant expect too much from the really cheap ones but the slightly more expensive 'TIG' ones are really very nice blades, equal to stock Align blades I'd say.

I'd not use the HS-65 servos, there are much better options. For helis and you really want metal gear digitals.
These are some of the best servose I've come across at any price: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dProduct=30687 They are just re-labels of Bluebird servos but they outperform the HS-65 by miles, there is simply no comparison.

Personally on headspeed, i'd say you want 'moderate' headspeed, not too low and not too high. About 75-80% on the throttle curve should be in the right ballpark. Too low headspeed and the tail wont hold well and collective response gets too sluggish. Too high just burns your batteries. For me lower headspeed doesn't help with reaction time, to improve reaction time you really need a larger more stable helicopter where things just happen slower. But your result might be different (though it doesn't look like it judging from your description of the accident)
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:55 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
So I would be best learning on lower headspeeds? Seems it increases flight time too. I'm still trying to figure out what -100 to 100 curves translate to from 0 - 100.
I'm no authority of FBL units.....only flown dialed in models, never set one up.

But, if you have the ability to adjust curves that look (similar) like what I previously posted:

"Here's an example of a typical (generally accepted in the sport) proportional pitch to throttle curve (head rotation speed and blade pitch) relationship for general flight of a Trex 450 ccp.

Throttle stick position 1 thru 5......1 being idle....3 being centered stick...5 being maxed up - full throttle.
Blade pitch position in degrees....0 degrees being level or flat.

Throttle 1 pitch 0 - throttle speed 0% of max
Throttle 2 pitch +3 degrees -throttle speed 40% of max
Throttle 3 pitch +5 degrees - throttle speed 65% to 70% of max
Throttle 4 pitch +7 degrees - throttle speed 85% of max
Throttle 5 pitch +9 degrees - Throttle speed 100%

For more advanced gentle sport flying:

Throttle 1 pitch -2 degrees - throttle speeed 90% of max
Throttle 2 pitch 0 degrees - throttle speed 85% of max
Throttle 3 pitch +2 degrees - throttle speed 80% of max
Throttle 4 pitch +5 degrees - throttle speed 85% of max
Throttle 5 pitch +10 degrees - throttle speed 100%"

it will get you in a more comfortable place.......these are tried & true settings for most 450's.....meant to be flown in non-idle-up (low to moderate) head speed. Work fine in an idle-up setting (advanced or faster head speed) too.

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Old 07-18-2014, 10:25 AM   #13
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Use the wood blades, the wood blades from HK are Ok to use, when first starting out, they will splinter and absorb most of the impact, your not going to use high rotor head speeds when first learning, the fiberglass blades are strong, but when you crash, they will take out the tail boom and a bunch of parts with them, helis are a money pit untill you get good with them

http://www.ebay.com/itm/325mm-Wood-B...item4174efa887



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Old 07-18-2014, 05:39 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
That actually sounds like a lot of damage, it must have hit pretty hard.

I keep an open mind on HK products, some are junk, many are perfectly ok. Often when you buy elswhere you are getting the exact same product but you just pay more for it (which doesnt improve quality at all). I've used the HK blades and they were ok after balancing. You cant expect too much from the really cheap ones but the slightly more expensive 'TIG' ones are really very nice blades, equal to stock Align blades I'd say.

I'd not use the HS-65 servos, there are much better options. For helis and you really want metal gear digitals.
These are some of the best servose I've come across at any price: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dProduct=30687 They are just re-labels of Bluebird servos but they outperform the HS-65 by miles, there is simply no comparison.

Personally on headspeed, i'd say you want 'moderate' headspeed, not too low and not too high. About 75-80% on the throttle curve should be in the right ballpark. Too low headspeed and the tail wont hold well and collective response gets too sluggish. Too high just burns your batteries. For me lower headspeed doesn't help with reaction time, to improve reaction time you really need a larger more stable helicopter where things just happen slower. But your result might be different (though it doesn't look like it judging from your description of the accident)
Some swear by the HS65HB or MG servos, I went with the HB, due to a tighter gear meshing. I'll see how they do, and progress from there, perhaps the ones you mentioned. I found the 450x perfectly controllable. The issue was I was 1-2 feet from the ground when it took place. My only thoughts were to take it away from the curb so I would not risk hitting the tail. If I were 10 feet up, I wouldn't have crashed.
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Old 07-18-2014, 05:42 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by CHELLIE View Post
Use the wood blades, the wood blades from HK are Ok to use, when first starting out, they will splinter and absorb most of the impact, your not going to use high rotor head speeds when first learning, the fiberglass blades are strong, but when you crash, they will take out the tail boom and a bunch of parts with them, helis are a money pit untill you get good with them

http://www.ebay.com/itm/325mm-Wood-B...item4174efa887



That they are. So it seems it wood to learn and CF for the rest. As for headspeed, I do run at about 80% throttle. With my crash, it was only 50% actually, in idle up mode. Not sure, but maybe it didn't help matters being a low headspeed.
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Old 07-18-2014, 05:43 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by pizzano View Post
I'm no authority of FBL units.....only flown dialed in models, never set one up.

But, if you have the ability to adjust curves that look (similar) like what I previously posted:

"Here's an example of a typical (generally accepted in the sport) proportional pitch to throttle curve (head rotation speed and blade pitch) relationship for general flight of a Trex 450 ccp.

Throttle stick position 1 thru 5......1 being idle....3 being centered stick...5 being maxed up - full throttle.
Blade pitch position in degrees....0 degrees being level or flat.

Throttle 1 pitch 0 - throttle speed 0% of max
Throttle 2 pitch +3 degrees -throttle speed 40% of max
Throttle 3 pitch +5 degrees - throttle speed 65% to 70% of max
Throttle 4 pitch +7 degrees - throttle speed 85% of max
Throttle 5 pitch +9 degrees - Throttle speed 100%

For more advanced gentle sport flying:

Throttle 1 pitch -2 degrees - throttle speeed 90% of max
Throttle 2 pitch 0 degrees - throttle speed 85% of max
Throttle 3 pitch +2 degrees - throttle speed 80% of max
Throttle 4 pitch +5 degrees - throttle speed 85% of max
Throttle 5 pitch +10 degrees - throttle speed 100%"

it will get you in a more comfortable place.......these are tried & true settings for most 450's.....meant to be flown in non-idle-up (low to moderate) head speed. Work fine in an idle-up setting (advanced or faster head speed) too.
So clearly the best bet is a pitch gauge, that way you know exactly what the pitch is, and don't rely on guessing with the curves.
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Old 07-18-2014, 06:17 PM   #17
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You do need to measure pitch, guessing is no good at all. Helis are all about setup, get that wrong and they will be a handful regardless of how good you are at flying.

Personally I never used wood blades at all and didn't have any trouble. I'd be worried about throwing a blade if using those really cheap ones, but maybe they are ok so it's your call.

PS.. I've used many HS-65 (mainly MG) servos, they are 'ok' but these days there are much better servos for no more money. The ones I linked are much better in every way.
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Old 07-18-2014, 07:41 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
So clearly the best bet is a pitch gauge, that way you know exactly what the pitch is, and don't rely on guessing with the curves.
There are a variety of tools required for the maintenance....thus the previous mentions related to cost

Here's a partial list of tools common for E 450 and larger heli maintenance, many of which are probably in your stash already:

Various micro sizes of allen, flat and hex drivers.
Vairious sizes of micro clamps, sockets, fine/long nose pliers/cutters.
Spare main drive belts, blades, shafts, bearings, turnbuckle linkage.
Various micro size screws, nuts, bolts and connectors.
Spare landing gear.
Blade balancer.
Pitch gauge.
Test stand (home made).
Micrometer (caliper).
Micro level.
Micro metric measuring device.

The list gets bigger with nitro/gasser and 600 scale. Most everything you have to building planks will be put to use, so your'e in a good place to start with.

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Old 07-18-2014, 08:14 PM   #19
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Guess I should look at the 450x like an rc car. Yes they are no where near the same, but many of my tools will work with turnbuckles and such. I have all hex drivers, although how I wish all parts on the 450 were hex, or even better robertson, not PhillipsThe Robertson head was designed in Canada, and is by far the best design, too bad it isn't implemented more in rc stuff.

How long do belts last in a heli? Do bearings go fairly quickly? With rc cars there are usually over 20 bearings, I've never had any fail on me.
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Old 07-19-2014, 01:50 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
Guess I should look at the 450x like an rc car. Yes they are no where near the same, but many of my tools will work with turnbuckles and such. I have all hex drivers, although how I wish all parts on the 450 were hex, or even better robertson, not PhillipsThe Robertson head was designed in Canada, and is by far the best design, too bad it isn't implemented more in rc stuff.

How long do belts last in a heli? Do bearings go fairly quickly? With rc cars there are usually over 20 bearings, I've never had any fail on me.
Considering I'm an anal maintenance freak, belt tension should be checked frequently during "break" in.....replaced mine after every 10hrs of flight time, whether it needed it or not (had one fail on my second 450) not a pretty sight.

The most common bearing/bushing/damper failure seems to be those associated with the rotor feathering shafts (both main and tail). Main rotor shaft bearings will last for awhile as long as they are secured in decent shaft blocks a sleeves. Obviously, running with a "bent" main shaft does the bearings no good....check the shaft sleeves for wear.

Another "keep an eye on" is the tail drive gear assembly....they tend to get sloppy over time...that inspection is performed with belt replacement.

Main rotor gear case bearings and shaft rings should be inspected for wear during belt replacement as well......since you've stripped your drive gear, it will give you practice for the next inspection.

Swashplate adjustments will be needed from time to time........level here is critical to proper control arm response.

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Old 07-19-2014, 02:23 AM   #21
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Can the belt be tightened, or is it a case of a new one once it is too loose? It's certainly not easy accessing the belt.
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Old 07-19-2014, 02:31 AM   #22
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At some point I'll have to disassemble the heli see how it goes together. Just worried about stripping screws, stripped a few on the mcpx.
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Old 07-19-2014, 04:50 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
Can the belt be tightened, or is it a case of a new one once it is too loose? It's certainly not easy accessing the belt.
I'm not that familiar with the Blade 450x, (it's newer than my last heli build exprience), but many of the Trex clones have the same process....the tail drive gear assembly can be adjusted horizontally and vertically and the tail rotor head assembly can be adjusted by means of the tail boom install location (slid forward and or aft).....the trickiest aspect is geting the belt rotated in the proper direction and twist....many first timers are confused by the belt rotation, since it must be twisted like a bow though the tail boom......best tested (without power) the first few installs.

I have yet found a method to tighten the micro screws on any small machine without eventually striping/re-tapping the socket anywhere self tapping screws are installed....that's why most use some type of lock-tite in almost every location.....especially metal to metal motion locations....I'd advise staying away from adding a drop of CA anywhere screws are involved....especially those areas related to the frame and grommet spots......it makes disassembly that much more difficult later.

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Old 07-19-2014, 05:03 AM   #24
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From what I see of parts, it's seems the boom is the only potential way. I'm used to loctite for rc cars. A car going 80mph and a pinion or mount loosens...good bye gears. Stripping sockets is an issue, but I find that with prebuilt, they tighten things too much. This was a huge issue with the mcpx BL, the screw for the rotor head stripped. I went to a titanium shaft on it, had to snap the carbon one, as the screw wouldn't go in all the way, and use a pair if cutters and grip the screw to unscrew it. If they just used all hex, such annoyances wouldn't be there. I haven't had to take apart the frame on the 450x, which is Phillips, but I'm hoping the screws will come out okay. On the rc car I have, I switch to non-self tapping hex screws, I really dislike self tapping and they really aren't necessary if manufacturers would take the time to thread parts. Even if the cost was 20 bucks more for the 450x, it would be much better. I may end up taking this route with the 450x, getting better quality screws, slightly larger, and use them to rethread with a proper thread. If you have good enough screws, ones that a hex fits perfectly, you can easily do this without needing to drill anything.
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Old 07-19-2014, 09:47 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by thepiper92 View Post
From what I see of parts, it's seems the boom is the only potential way.
yes, that's the usual way, the tail boom just slides back and forth to adjust tension. I've only got one belt drive heli but I've found it to be pretty much maintenance free so far, i give it a squirt of silicon lube once in a while.
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