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06-06-2010 01:58 AM  7 years agoPost 1
Gamb

Senior Heliman

Belle Mead, NJ USA

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Just completed a Superfly and wanted to do a quick post and a few comments for those considering the Superfly. This was a big step up for me since I am essentially still a novice. I really don't have much flying experience, and can just about hover. I have a Quickheli EP10, which still works, but wanted to move up. I live about 1½ hours away from Coopersburg, PA, and so when I had problems with the EP10, I decided to drive over to the shop for parts and advice. My prior experience with Quickheli were all through the phone or e-mail, and I must say they had always been prompt with the replies and sending out parts. Well, the long and short of it was that I walked in to the store for a few parts; which I did buy, and walked out with a much bigger box which cost me a lot more than I expected! There was no high pressure tactics, and in fact Irwin suggested that I change out the motor on my EP 10 to an out-runner, and a new set of batteries, and I would have a better flying machine for about $150.00.

My EP10 experience was an adventure. I had no idea on how much effort it would take, and sat down on a weekend and was immediately overwhelmed. The instructions were very sketchy, the photos and diagrams were inadequate, there were a lot more tools that I needed, etc. To top it all off, there were a lot of missing parts. I would get so far, and then find I did not have the part to complete the next step. I would have to put away all the stuff, and then I would e-mail QH, and get the part, and then have to wait till I had a free few days to start up again. It was a very frustrating build, but throughout, QH was very supportive. The missing parts were promptly sent out, without any extra charges to me, and advise was freely offered. (That does not make up for the poor packaging).

When I got the Superfly, and with my prior experience, I decided to budget a week to build and so decided to do it during my one week vacation. I had now acquired all the tools I needed, was more technically adept, and was more confident of figuring out the instructions. The first step I did was to lay out all the parts, and as you can tell from the photo, all the bags seemed to be intact, and everything seemed to be there, although there was no detailed parts list. I will go into more detail on the build later, but just a few points for those considering this model. The first thing that I did was I printed out the instructions from the provided CD. I did not realize that the instruction manual was out of date, and even the picture of the frame was wrong! I checked their web page; no luck under the Superfly page. I finally found it under "instructions" and then clicking on Superfly. Here is the link: http://www.quickheli.com/instructio...ly_inst_5_6.pdf and it says it was "Updated:5/09/08".

The build went surprisingly well. The major parts were all there, and once I got the correct instructions, they were more in-line with the parts I had. There is a box of hardware including bolts, nuts, etc. which did not have all the correct sizes, and had a couple of extra things. I spoke with Jon and this is because it is a "generic" fastener box for all their kits, and so there are extra bits, and sometimes some of the fasteners run out. I had extra fasteners so I managed on that front. By the end of the week, I had come towards the end, but I found some more pieces missing. In addition, there were no instructions on how long to cut the boom supports, or the tail push rod. The supplied carbon fiber tube, was not long enough, and rather than have them send out parts, etc. I decided to drive to the store. I was offered the option of sitting there and finishing it but I had run out of time. So I decided to leave it with Jon to finish, and also set up the radio, etc. Had to pay extra for the work, but that is what I would expect.

Went back the next week on Thursday to pick it up again, and Jon and Irwin took it outside powered it up, hovered it and did some adjustments, and set it up to fly for a novice. They offered to let me fly it out in their field, but I did not have the time. I did a quick once over, and drove home. I started it up, and noticed the main gear was missing a tooth! I was very disappointed! It was Thursday evening, I was looking forward to the long weekend (Memorial Day) with a new helicopter, and now I had nothing! Called up Irwin at around 4:30 pm that day, and they said they would get the main gear out to me. I was resigned to sit out the weekend with out a helicopter, but on Saturday I got a new gear from QH in the mail! I did not have time till Sunday evening to change the gear, but then on Monday it rained!! So, finally did not get to fly, but QH really went out of their way to make the experience with the Superfly build a good one.

Conclusion on the Superfly:
Build: Prior build experience strongly recommended, although if you live close to Coopersburg, PA, you could get by with minimal prior experience. Technically challenging, but doable with moderate to advanced skills. Instructions need improvement with more detailed directions on the technical aspects. Need to have a good set of tools for fasteners, ball link pliers etc. (This is spelled out on the instructions). Need to know how to use a Dremel, soldering iron, CA glue, etc. Installation of servos, electronics, etc. much easier than EP10 (better thought out design; larger frame make it easier to find places to put stuff).
Package: Quality of parts - good to very good throughout; especially the frame, motor mount, head, tail, etc. but still problems with some missing parts which is frustrating. The worst parts were the ball link ends. The holes for the metal link seem to be off center, and so the completed links look "bent" although the metal is straight. Everything seems to work, but doesn't quite look right. Maybe I will buy some other brand links in the future and replace everything. The same links on the EP 10 have been working fine for years.
Support: Excellent! I really could not have completed this (or the EP 10) without Irwin & Jon's help. It helped that I could drive to the shop when I needed to (but a 2 way trip is still 3 - 3½ hours for me!). Even if you can't get to the shop, they are prompt with replies to e-mail, with sending out parts, and providing advice. If you live anywhere within a driving radius of Coopersburg PA, I would strongly recommend getting a Quickheli. RC helicopters are the most complex RC machines and so regardless of the manufacturer, you need good one on one support. This may not be available at your LHS if they mainly deal with airplane or trucks.
Flying: I am not the right person to comment on this aspect, because I can just about hover. It is a stable machine, with good power, but my radio is not set up to do wild 3D etc. (and I don't have the skills). I don't anticipate doing any 3D in the near future, and if I progress to that level, I will re-post my thoughts on the suitability of the Superfly (don't hold your breath!). This is a big, stable machine, which is a step up for a novice; which is what I need for my stage of flying.
Disadvantages: Quickheli is a single location, and they are the only supplier for parts for their machines. You will not be able to drive down to your LHS and get parts such as a specific tail rotor belt, or parts for the head. If you crash on a Friday, you may not be able to get back in the air that weekend. That being said, they are prompt at sending you out parts if you need them.
Recommendations: I would definitely buy another Superfly, or any other model from Quickheli; especially if I lived close by.

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11-14-2010 11:56 PM  6 years agoPost 2
Gamb

Senior Heliman

Belle Mead, NJ USA

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SuperFly Update

I have the advantage that I don't live too far from Coopersburg, PA (1½ hours one way!) so when I have trouble, I tend to save up all my problems and run them by Irwin and Jon in person. That way I get advice, can often fix the problem and have them test the helicopter while I am there.

Problem No. 1: Kept hitting the tail blades just as I was taking off. Sometimes shattered tail blades, sometimes just scrape the blades enough that they have to be changed.

Solution: Add landing gear dampers to rear of landing gear. The dampers are just about 1 cm in height, so I was not sure if this would help or not, but because of the length of the boom, the tail is now about 5 - 6 cm off the ground when the skids are resting on the ground. I am not very fond of the forward leaning look, but if it saves the tail blades, I will go for it. So far, no further tail ground strikes.
Note: Only add dampers to the back, if you add them to both the front and back, it will raise it by 1 cm, not 5 cm.

Damaged Tail Blades:

Raised tail:

Close-up of extra dampers in the back:

Thanks to Irwin and Jon.

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11-15-2010 12:37 AM  6 years agoPost 3
Gamb

Senior Heliman

Belle Mead, NJ USA

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Superfly Modifications

Some minor tweaks to my Superfly.
No. 1: My original set up had the ESC on the left. This meant that the three wires running to the motor, crossed diagonally across the top of the frame, and I was forced to pass the three wires from the motor inside the frame, and running very close to the spinning motor. The wire length on the motor and the ESC were what they came with. I could have patched more wire to make the wires longer to avoid this, but I did not want to add another splice between the motor and the ESC.

Original Setup:

So I switched the ESC to the right side of the front, and put the BEC on the left. This shortened the distance between the ESC and the motor, and so the wires could be brought outside the frame, and also with a lot less tension.

This is the view from the front:

This is the view from the right side:

These are close-up views of the wires leading to the motor:

This also places the battery lead on the right side of the helicopter, so I have to stand on the right side to connect the battery. Not a big deal.

Please note, I have switched over all my connectors to XT60 (yellow in the picture) connectors from the Deans. I find that these connectors are easier to solder, cleaner looking, and both the male and female ends are covered, so that there are no bare metal ends. I don't notice as much sparking when I make the battery connection (probably because I can't see it)! They are quite secure, but have a textured external surface so it is easier to grip when I want to disconnect the battery.

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11-19-2010 05:28 PM  6 years agoPost 4
shuttlepilot

Elite Veteran

Mullins, South Carolina

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Nice posts and great infomation Gamb. Keep up the good work!!

Gas is Great
Camper Fuel is Better!!
QWW Helis

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11-20-2010 08:16 PM  6 years agoPost 5
Gamb

Senior Heliman

Belle Mead, NJ USA

My Posts: All  Forum  Topic

Thanks for the comments

Thanks for your comments.

I am essentially a newbie, but am learning a bit each day. Irwin and Jon have been very helpful, both in person and over the phone. I have been trying to document the building and learning process. I have found with any endeavor, once one gets past a certain point, it becomes harder to sympathize with a newbie's questions. It seems so "obvious" to a veteran. I thought I would post these tidbits of information, since I noticed that there are no other post related to the Superfly, and also a paucity of posts regarding Quickheli helicopters. Most of the Quickheli post are from Veterans in the hobby. I wonder if Quickheli products are mainly in the hands of experienced pilots?

GA

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07-01-2011 04:29 AM  6 years agoPost 6
Gamb

Senior Heliman

Belle Mead, NJ USA

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A series of unfortunate events ... No. 1: Motor Bearing Failure

Sorry for the lack of activity under this topic, but work, etc. have kept me from posting.

I have had a series of problems with my heli, and time permitting, I will post with pictures; for comments and FYI on my solutions to them. This is the first of the issues:

Motor Bearing Failure.

The first flight of the year was March, 17, 2011. I have been trying to squeeze in as much flying as I can, but most of the weekends were miserable with rain, or wind. If it was a good weekend, I had to do something else! Last month I was flying in the back yard, and got to hover quite well, with the training gear on, and was going through the first set of batteries. Every once in a while the motor would "hiccup". Did not think much of it. Then seemed to lose power at about 6 minutes, so landed, then it seemed okay. Changed to the second set of batteries, and right after I spooled up it really started losing power and wound not lift off, and then there was a grinding noise. I thought that the main gear had stripped (as before), but it was okay. The tail belt was okay, the backlash between the pinion and the main gear was okay. Checked everything again, and looked okay. The motor was a bit warm, but I have come to expect that. The motor felt rough when I spun it manually.

Brought it in and took out the main gear and checked the one way bearing and it seemed okay. Using a single battery, fired up the motor, and it would barely run, and was very rough. Pulled the motor out and took off the motor mount and pinion. Seemed like the motor bearing had seized. Called Jon at Quickheli and he thought I may have "thrown a magnet" (one of the permanent magnets comes loose). So packed up the motor and sent it off. Turned out the bearing was the problem, and after a bearing change, I got the motor back, and it has been working fine. Luckily did not have to change the motor. According to Jon, this is not a common problem with these type of motors.

Was analyzing what could have been the problem, and my theory is that I had mounted the pinion gear too far down the shaft, and the tip of the pinion was in contact with the main gear. The motor is only mounted from the front end, so the pinion could potentially put undue stress in one direction on the bearing. I have noted that the larger heli's have a long motor shaft and the shaft is supported at both ends in bearings, and the pinion is captured in-between.

Has anyone else had this problem? Is this a reasonable assumption for the cause, or is this just "one of those things"? Will update this post if it fails again.

PS: Anyone else have a SuperFly?

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07-01-2011 12:26 PM  6 years agoPost 7
Eury

rrProfessor

Dover NH

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Bearings fail in motors at times. It's not real common, but I've had it happen. I never had the symptom of losing power you describe when it happened, just a grinding or squealing noise.

Those are awesome looking blades, what are they?

Nick Crego

Citizen #0168

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07-01-2011 11:39 PM  6 years agoPost 8
Gamb

Senior Heliman

Belle Mead, NJ USA

My Posts: All  Forum  Topic

I have not seen much discussion on motor bearing failure in the forums, so must be quite uncommon. Thanks Eury for your input.

Oh! The blades! They are the standard QuickHeli 550 mm carbon composite blades. I just used a can of yellow and a can of black spray paint from WalMart and some masking tape. Took a while to get all the stripes on, but it looks cool when they spool up. I was trying for a black and yellow theme, kind of a "bumble bee" look.
I don't routinely fly with those blades on though. I use a pair of the same blades, but un-modified. Don't want to scrape up the paint job just flying in the back yard.
They are very good blades, light weight and they come as balanced pairs. They are a relative bargain. For some reason, the 550 mm blades are the most inexpensive blades they sell; cheaper even than their 475 mm blade. you can get two sets fro $65.00 (which is why I painted one set, and use the other for routine flying!) This is the link.
http://www.hhiheli.com/Merchant2/me...licopter_Blades

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