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Posted: 1/29/2006 7:28:54 PM EDT
I'm thinking about getting one of those small electric RC helicopters. I've seen a few different brands (piccolo, dragonfly), and I'm just wondering what you would suggest for a beginer. I have a buddy who bought one a while back, and it seemed like he crashed it every time he tried to get it off of the ground. He ended up spending so much money on replacement parts, he ended up selling it.

I've flown a bunch of RC planes, but never a helicoper. How much harder are they to fly than a plane? Is the computer trainer software worth the money?

Any info you could give me would be great.

Thanks
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:30:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By imq707s:
I'm thinking about getting one of those small electric RC helicopters. I've seen a few different brands (piccolo, dragonfly), and I'm just wondering what you would suggest for a beginer. I have a buddy who bought one a while back, and it seemed like he crashed it every time he tried to get it off of the ground. He ended up spending so much money on replacement parts, he ended up selling it.Thats about right, little Fixed pitch helis like the piccolo are hard to learn on

I've flown a bunch of RC planes, but never a helicoper. How much harder are they to fly than a plane? Is the computer trainer software worth the money? Yes

Any info you could give me would be great.

Thanks

Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:31:25 PM EDT
Tag 'cause I'm also interested. Casually looked at them, but never really had too much motivation to buy one. Seems like a great idea, but I would be afraid of crashing and breaking a multi-hundred dollar toy...
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:31:33 PM EDT
there's a member here who is into it, and iirc he even has a camera mounted on his helicopter for taking pictures.
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:33:08 PM EDT
I also have just caught the bug...

The Piccolo is my first bet... but I will be investing in the software first. It's the price of 2 set of rotors... good money in my book.

Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:33:39 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bastiat:
there's a member here who is into it, and iirc he even has a camera mounted on his helicopter for taking pictures.



I bet it's a joker
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:36:05 PM EDT
The small helos are tons harder to control. If you're going to get into it, either get a larger electric, or preferably a larger gas one. They're more fun anyway. A piccolo is so small, any spectators can barely see it, if you ask me. On that note, be prepared to spend a couple grand on this hobby. Good larger helos aren't cheap, and the helo radio control by itself can cost from $300-$1000. Good luck!
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:41:25 PM EDT
I picked up a HoneyBee 2 FP from HobbyLobby.com for a buck fifty. Pretty good little unit.

Yeah, it ain't easy to learn how to fly it... takes a smooth touch, but it can be done. I got it hovering a couple feet up for short spurts. A decent size open space in the house is good for hovering practice.

I did make the mistake of taking it outside and getting a little too high for my own good. It's a very robust unit. Only broke the battery mounts and the tail boom. A whole unit sans motor and electronics can be had for about $30-40 at a few places.
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:41:45 PM EDT
Here's a link to a video of me flying before I gave it up:

www.helihobby.com//videos/alan_piccolopro-1.wmv

Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:43:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bastiat:
Here's a link to a video of me flying before I gave it up:

www.helihobby.com//videos/alan_piccolopro-1.wmv




Nice flying!
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:46:12 PM EDT
I got a little $120 job for christmas but havent flown it yet its for the RC chalanged like me...LOL...
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:49:03 PM EDT
I just recently bought an E Flight Blade CP. I like it, but I keep running it into the desk in my hotel room. Gone through 3 sets of blades in two weeks. I really should take it outside.


Aviator
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 7:52:18 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bumpus:

Originally Posted By bastiat:
Here's a link to a video of me flying before I gave it up:

www.helihobby.com//videos/alan_piccolopro-1.wmv




Nice flying!



Dude that was F**king awsome...

Maverik"we were inverted"
IceMan**COUGH**"Bullshit**Cough**
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 2:26:10 AM EDT
You're Alan Szabo?


My list of heli's up to this point in my RC flying career (mostly fly airplanes)

Hirobo Shuttle
LMH100
Kalt Whisper
DraganFlyer
DraganFlyerII
MI­A Ultrasport
MS Hornet
MS Hornet 2 (Unbuilt, still getting components together-just need the gyro)

Form most people, a fixed pitch indoor eletric heli or small outdoor heli are the way to go. Sure, larger ones fly better but the cost of a minor crash on a larger heli will pay for an entire small heli. Now that the Chi-Coms are banging out Piccolo copies by the bazillion for reasonable prices in a ready to fly package just about anyone can give it a shot.

The best place to learn to hover is in your garage, IMO. No wind, not coffee tables to hit.

Link Posted: 1/30/2006 2:52:14 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2006 2:53:18 AM EDT by cobramech]
I have been flying rc planes and helis since 1989. I HIGHLY recommend a simulator. I could have saved a lot of money,and learned much quicker. The best thing about a sim is when you crash, just hit the reset button! You can crank in winds,breezes etc as you get better. Basically,the sim will allow you to learn how to control a heli, without the worry of expensive parts replacement. Once you learn how to hover/fly, than you can look around for a decent heli, and get advice on how to set it up properly. Plus, if the weather is not good, you can still fly the sim, as well as try new maneuvers without risking your machine. I hope this helps you!
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 4:55:53 AM EDT
There used to be a free downloadable trainer out there that had a couple different kinds of R/C chopper models.

You could get yourself a cheapie dual stick analog controller and set it up to act as the dual sticks on a radio control unit.

It took me awhile to learn to fly the choppers but I got pretty damn good with them. Probably shortened the amount of time it would take for a learning curve with the real thing having the hand eye coordination established.

One of the hardest things is the fixed point of view and being able to quickly translate that into how to pitch/roll the helicopter as it's coming towards you, away from you, or inverted.

After awhile I could do lawn mowers hovering inverted over the ground, orbit around a fixed central position, do loops, double back along the same previous flight path.


I'll see if I can't find the link, it's been a few years since I've had the program installed.


Once I get enough play money to stop being so focused on the gun collection, a R/C helicopter or two is definitely in my future.
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 8:03:37 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2006 8:04:00 AM EDT by bastiat]

Originally Posted By TheOtherDave:
You're Alan Szabo?




No, that's why the smilie was there.
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 8:11:56 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/31/2006 4:58:41 AM EDT by A-nus]
I go in and out of flying them, I’ve flown .30 size gas and the ms hornet electric I usually run out of money and patients b4 I get to forward flight.

They are hard to fly, I can not get the whole reversed control thing when any rc toy is facing me, my brain totally farts out, I get it in theory but I can not get it into my muscle memory.

t
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 8:13:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2006 8:16:58 AM EDT by madmann135]
I'm into nitro RC Cars... lets just say with the On-Roads 30MPH is starter speeds and 100+ is considered insane rechable speeds. and that's for 1/10 and 1/8 scale cars.

I've seen heli's and planes fly. Mataining the engine is important, moreso on the heli because if it cuts you will have a nice falling rock.

I would recomend you get a simulator first. If you plan on getting nitro heli's try an OS engine as your first engine... they are very reliable.


Tower Hobbies has practally everything you will need... the other thing you will need are people who are seasoned pilots to help you out with some of the details.


I've seen a heli practally cut grass once... the heli was upside down and so close to the ground that grass clippings were being pushed up.

If you want maximum preformance then you will have to work with the engine.
Land Nitro RCers learn about the engine very quickly because it's so important. Flyers don't care much about the engine's preformance, as long as it runs they are happy.
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 8:14:15 AM EDT
Get the Blade CX. It is the easiest helicopter to learn on because of the dual rotor design. I have one and love it, great beginner chopper. Make sure to get the "training wheels" and use them for the first couple hours until you get comfortable hovering and flying in all directions.
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 11:17:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By blakey6551:
Get the Blade CX. It is the easiest helicopter to learn on because of the dual rotor design. I have one and love it, great beginner chopper. Make sure to get the "training wheels" and use them for the first couple hours until you get comfortable hovering and flying in all directions.



+1

I have heaard very good things about it.

Its a Micro heli, buts Collective pitch while this makes it more complecated it also makes it more staple do to higher head speed and easier to fly do to better controlle of altidude.
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 12:19:15 PM EDT
I'm a weekend RC Heli pilot.
If you want a small electric the Blade is a cheap, decent one to start. A little bigger and more expensive but able to do most aerobatics, the TRex is the std. There are several large electrics like the Joker line and MinAirs ION but at that sixe you are talking serious $$. Like in U$800 for one set of batteries so you can fly for 10 minutes.
For Nitro powered helis the Raptor 50 or Sceado are good beginner models. The Raptor 90, Freya or Furys are good big size models.
There are 3 subcultures in helis. FAI for precision flight, 3D for wild aerobatics and Scale. All are hard.
Expect to spend lots of money. Helis are like Crack dealers, they give you a free taste first and then suck you in. A simulator will save you lots of money because you can practice crashing.
Here is my Scale:

and my old aerobatics cruiser:


http://www.runryder.com
has tons of info.

Fritz

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