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HelicopterMain Discussion › Old-School Heli: Du-Bro Whirlybird 505 Video
11-30-2007 02:53 AM  9 years agoPost 21
heli_headcase

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Hovering around Atlanta

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I guess the fuel tank is under the engine and rotates with the engine on the main shaft, but how is the throttle connected?
Yup, the tank both holds the fuel and the engine/blades to the chassis. Here's a picture from my gallery showing the details you need:

The throttle pushrod runs through the hollow mainshaft and contacts the tip of a 90 deg bellcrank. A spring forces the throttle closed and the bellcrank pushed the rod against the spring. The pushrod is constantly rotating with the rest of the head.


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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11-30-2007 02:57 AM  9 years agoPost 22
heli_headcase

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Hovering around Atlanta

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Please give thanks...

we have it so easy now cuz of machines like this, and the people that build them befor us,,,,,,,,,
That's 101% correct! But it's because we have it so easy today that so many forget or never knew just how tough it was back then. That's part of why I'm doing this old stuff, to remind and show (for the first timers) what it was all about.


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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11-30-2007 03:01 AM  9 years agoPost 23
heli_headcase

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I wonder how fast the motor is spinning?
You mean the crank case or the crank shaft? If it's the case, I'm taking a WAG (wild @ss guess) of 200RPM. If I tach the tail rotor I can get a more accurate idea.
That realy is great flying! Thanks for the video.
Thank you! It's the best flight I've had with that Whirlybird anyway.


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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11-30-2007 03:05 AM  9 years agoPost 24
heli_headcase

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Hovering around Atlanta

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Keep looking...

I would have to say, you have the best gallery that i have seen yet!
That's only because you stopped when you got to mine. You need to keep looking But thank you for the compliment.


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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11-30-2007 05:08 AM  9 years agoPost 25
Butch

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New York

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Fantastic Video! With this model, came my first feeling of having control of a heli. Brief and at hover...but it was there.
You really flew it well!
I sure was..."Bit By The Whirlybug"

The Whirlybug Bit Me!

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11-30-2007 05:21 PM  9 years agoPost 26
heli_headcase

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Tell me more...

Hi Butch,

You've sparked my interest in how you came to be involved with the 505. Can you tell me/us more and do you have any pictures to share?

Thanks!


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-01-2007 02:48 AM  9 years agoPost 27
jczankl

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AZ

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Yeah, Steve you have amazed me!!! Great job on that Whirlybird. Looks good in the air.

GAUI/Empire
Spinblades
PowerMaster Fuels
Graupner
Castle Creations
Scorpion Motor

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12-01-2007 03:34 AM  9 years agoPost 28
GyroFreak

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Orlando Florida ...28N 81W

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heli_headcase

Thanks for the video with the sound. It's incredible !
I wonder how some genius could come up with that prop/rotating engine-main blade configuration when no such real chopper like that exsisted. Or did it ? Your sure right about the main body, you only need enough tail rotor push to counteract bearing friction and wind components.
I've only seen pictures, so thanks for the video and sound.

I think about the hereafter. I go somewhere to get something, then wonder what I'm here after ?

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12-01-2007 06:13 AM  9 years agoPost 29
Butch

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New York

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HH, I always loved helis, and the thought of an rc/heli became an obsession. Testing my time/date/production memory, the AMA review of the Dubro Hughes 300 kicked this "fean" up a notch. AMA also ran ad's for the 505. One day in spring of 1973 while visiting my LHS (Andy's Hobby's in Elmsford NY) I saw he had a 505 on the shelf. We walked out..."hand in rotor".(Plus, it was the only heli I could scrounge up enough cash for. The 300 @ $350.00 wasnt going to happen)
MRC F710 Radio, K&B 40. Only progressed to hover( think it had anything to do with the training gear? lol), but it was a thrill!
The Dubro Tri-Star/Enstrom Body was next!
Thanks for asking, this brings back many fond memories.

The Whirlybug Bit Me!

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12-01-2007 01:51 PM  9 years agoPost 30
Swoop

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Newark, DE USA

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Truly a great video. I'm part of the new generation of helis, so seeing that machine was totaly new to me. I actually found your video and information far more entertaining to view than todays 3D stuff (although its cool too). I can't wait to see more video and details of any other projects you may get into. Your gallery is awesome. I would love to attend a vintage fly in to check out all the models that predate me. Great post!

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12-01-2007 03:07 PM  9 years agoPost 31
RayJayJohnsonJr

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Midwest

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The Dubro Tri-Star/Enstrom Body was next!
That's what I want to see a video of, the Du-Bro Tri-star. My first heli! Enstrom body, hughes body, or the Scorpion II, I don't care. I can't find a picture of mine anywhere. Maybe I never took one, I don't know. There was a time back then when I truly believed that if you took a picture of your model it was destined to crash on the very next flight.

I did 'own' a 505 for a VERY short time. I ordered one from Tower and then the very next day I recieved their newest catalog. In it was the new Du-Bro Tri-Star at $189.00 if I remember correctly. I called Tower immediatley and asked if I could return the 505 and order instead the Tri-Star. They told me to refuse the package when the UPS man showed up. So I did have a 505 kit in the house for a minute or so. The UPS man wasn't too happy though.... oh well!

Oh, damn cool video by the way!!! Thanks for sharing!

-Mark

There, their and they're. It's really that simple.

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12-01-2007 07:29 PM  9 years agoPost 32
heli_headcase

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Hovering around Atlanta

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Got the 'Wobblies' though...

Hi jczankl,
Great job on that Whirlybird. Looks good in the air.
Think so? The way it's seen wobbling and shaking is almost embarrassing. I guess seeing it airborne more than makes up for the lack of smooth operation but I feel like hiding my face in shame. (Yeah comment all you want about the other reasons I should hide it )

Earlier this year I made some tune-up repairs on the 'bird and spent some serious time balancing the entire rotorhead assembly. It's a real pain to do but only had to be done once. The first test flight after the work showed I did my job well, it was perfectly smooth. I have video to prove it.

On that first test flight the heli was emergency-landed on a slope and it rolled over, making the blades contact the ground. Reason - a freak breeze came up from behind me and blew the Whirlybird down my hill and I had no choice but to set it down. This causes the 1/8" music wire main blade spindles to bend and there's no way to get them properly straight again without the complete heli disassembly and balance operation. Screw that, straighten the spindles the best I can and let it wobble!

It's "balanced" perfectly, but the blades aren't aligned perfectly. Hence the wobble. But yes, it does look good in the air and it's the only Whirlybird I've ever seen flying.


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-01-2007 07:29 PM  9 years agoPost 33
TonyF

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Southern CA

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I had a 505 as my first heli. All I ever got out of it was maybe a 30 second hover. But I now have one just about ready to fly and another NIB kit. So I'm going to see if I can fly it now. Hopefully I'll have some good video!

My next heli was a Kavan Jet Ranger. I did fly it but it went in in the dreaded turn, which the early Jet Ranger wouldn't get out of. I now have two NIB Kavan's to try again.

I then got a DuBro Shark with the O&R engine. I actually flew it before the Kavan and I learned how to fly heli's with it. I still remember that as a fun time. I used to carve my own tail blades for that machine. I upgraded to the .60 engine conversion and even flew in the Novice class at the 1976 Nats. At one point I had the collective conversion and flew it some.

I had and flew quite a bit a TriStar. It was a real bear on the tail! No gyro of course. This was about 1979. Whenever a local heli pilot would think he was pretty hot, I'd have him fly that TriStar. It was really fun seeing them try to keep that tail in control!

My prize kits now are two NIB O&R DuBro Hughes 300's. Everything is still in the plastic bags. They should be a blast to build and fly.

I'm all for a Vintage meet! Hope it can be done. Along with the above mentioned kits I've got a TriStar, a Shark .60, two Graupner 212's and a Heim Star Ranger. It sure would be fun to get together with those again!

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12-02-2007 05:59 AM  9 years agoPost 34
heli_headcase

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More Stuff...

Thanks for the video with the sound. It's incredible !
The sound was one of the primary reasons I wanted to get this airborne. Well, the real reason is to get the experience of trying out this technology and see one fly first-hand.
I wonder how some genius could come up with that prop/rotating engine-main blade configuration when no such real chopper like that exsisted. Or did it ?
It's a pretty old idea really. Can't find the correct reference but there was an avid free flight competitor named Dr Lee Taylor that seemed to win helicopter free flight at the NATS (mid 1960's) every year. His heli's had the engine in the lower portion of the fuselage, prop blowing down with the engine connected to a mount allowed to rotate driving a main rotor in the usual location. The main blades (usually four) had bob weights at the tips, the blades could feather freely and automatically correct for thrust depending on the angle of those weights. The trick was in connecting servos to the blades. Dave Gray figure it out.
Your sure right about the main body, you only need enough tail rotor push to counteract bearing friction and wind components.
But here's something I didn't expect and couldn't predict: The natural rotational direction of the fuselage ISN'T in the direction of the main rotor as gear and bearing drag would suggest. The fuse wants to rotate WITH the spiral downwash of the propeller! This factor caught me by surprise on the first few flights and I preset the tail rotor pitch the wrong direction. It's OK now...


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-02-2007 04:05 PM  9 years agoPost 35
heli_headcase

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Some catching up to do...

Hey folks,

I'll be answering more questions a little later. Don't meant to leave anyone hanging.


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-02-2007 04:37 PM  9 years agoPost 36
GyroFreak

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Orlando Florida ...28N 81W

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The natural rotational direction of the fuselage ISN'T in the direction of the main rotor as gear and bearing drag would suggest. The fuse wants to rotate WITH the spiral downwash of the propeller!
That sure would have caught me also. Rotating the wrong direction ???
I would have blamed it on the earths rotation causing gyroscopic precession compounded by miller shift in the magnetic declination drift adjusted for the neutron flux wave component spectrum.

I think about the hereafter. I go somewhere to get something, then wonder what I'm here after ?

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12-02-2007 10:23 PM  9 years agoPost 37
heli_headcase

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Hovering around Atlanta

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You would know...

Hi GyroFreak,

Your name says it all. You figured it out perfectly!


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-03-2007 03:20 AM  9 years agoPost 38
heli_headcase

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History...More info for us!

Hey Butch,
Testing my time/date/production memory, the AMA review of the Dubro Hughes 300 kicked this "fean" up a notch. AMA also ran ad's for the 505.
By 'AMA' are you referring to American Aircraft Modeler magazine, AAM for short? I don't remember seeing any DB H300 reviews there, only in RCM magazine. I still have all those old issues. Minor point here but lead on...
One day in spring of 1973 while visiting my LHS (Andy's Hobby's in Elmsford NY) I saw he had a 505 on the shelf. We walked out..."hand in rotor".(Plus, it was the only heli I could scrounge up enough cash for. The 300 @ $350.00 wasnt going to happen)
Price was certainly a big factor in the sales of the 505. Retail price of $125 was so much less than any other heli on the market - $425 for a Kavan Jet Ranger, something over $500 for the Hegi Bell Cobra (I think) and then there's the Hughes you mentioned. I let the 505 go by my RADAR and zeroed in on the 300 because an employee of the company I worked for had a "basement hobby shop" and could get a significant discount on the 300, out the door for $290. I really had the hots for the Kavan but it was way out of reach and I still had to buy an engine for $75. In 1974, $500 vs $290: A no brainer. Well, that was one of the biggest mistakes of my life and I didn't learn a darn thing about flying RC heli's in the year I beat on that poor Hughes. But that's another story and will be detailed when I post my Hughes 300 videos.
MRC F710 Radio, K&B 40. Only progressed to hover( think it had anything to do with the training gear? lol), but it was a thrill!
Tell me, were you bullied by wind? Did you have to wait for dead-calm conditions before even thinking of flying your 505? At least you can claim success even it it was only hovering. That MRC system was an early Futaba in disguise. A very good radio I understand.
The Dubro Tri-Star/Enstrom Body was next!
Thanks for asking, this brings back many fond memories.
'Memory Lane' is what this is all about. We'll have to get on the Tri-Star subject much later on. First I need to assemble the parts I own into a flyable 'Star. Hold those thoughts! THX


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-03-2007 07:30 PM  9 years agoPost 39
heli_headcase

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Hovering around Atlanta

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To Swoop...

Truly a great video.
Thank you. I have to also thank Joel Rosezwieg (RR screen name Helitronix) for suffering the exhaust racket while recording this flight.
I'm part of the new generation of helis, so seeing that machine was totaly new to me.
That's 90% of why I'm showing this stuff. Newcomers to the hobby need to see how it started and then they'll understand how far it's come in a very short period of time.
I can't wait to see more video and details of any other projects you may get into.
Hehehe, you're going to have to wait I do have quite a bit of archived video but unfortunately have short patience for performing the editing in preparation for public viewing. This was so rudely proven to myself a couple of days ago as I edited my ULSRS video for posting. Something caused the video in the frame to reduce in size from 640x480 to 320x240 pixels. Couldn't make it work correctly so I dumped the project. Given time I'll figure this out but time is short these days.
I would love to attend a vintage fly in to check out all the models that predate me.
You may have a golden opportunity this coming Summer. Check out this post: http://runryder.com/helicopter/t390656p1/

See you there!


HHC

So many heli's - too little time...

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12-03-2007 08:29 PM  9 years agoPost 40
Camp

rrApprentice

PA kinda. Mostly OTR driving

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What a memory, thanks. My Dad had one but I don't think he could ever fly it. I remember as a 11 year old staring at this thing for hours wishing I could figure out how to fly it. I had no idea about radios but had some idea about the motors. Years later I helped my Dad get a RC boat going, he was big on radios (still is a Ham Op) and I was big on engines (still can get anything to run).

Thanks for the memory, haven't seen or talked to my Dad in 20 years now but that was so neat to see.

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