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HomeAircraftHelicopterHelicopter Main Discussion › The best way to learn auto rotation after the sim?
02-05-2008 11:58 PM  10 years agoPost 1
Dilbeck

rrElite Veteran

Springdale Arkansas

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I know i need to start doing autos but am scared to try, Been working on the sim for some time but with the real thing i feel i will just crash and burn without some help. How did you guys do it for the first time? Or did you just wait till you had no choice? If i mess up a auto after a flame out or something i wont feel as bad as when im trying one with a great running heli!

Clint

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02-06-2008 12:00 AM  10 years agoPost 2
nappyroots2182

rrElite Veteran

Moline, il

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i setup the throttle hold with just enough throttle to hold a hover then back it down a few percent at a time as i get comfortable

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02-06-2008 12:02 AM  10 years agoPost 3
patriot21

rrKey Veteran

Byron,MN

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fly until you run out of gas...
no ... as said above ,,,, set your thottle hold above idle and then gradually work it down....
eventually you will feel comfortable enough to fly it until it runs out of gas...

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02-06-2008 12:09 AM  10 years agoPost 4
OK HELI

rrApprentice

Billings, Montana - USA

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you will hear many opinions as everyone learns differently. but in my case I started by matching my pitch curve in throttle hold and norm..-4 to +10.
I started off just hitting t/h at about 3 to 5 ft and she just floats to the ground and did that everytime I was ready to land and that will start getting you used to the flare and gentle landings.
I'm still progressing to higherf altitudes so I won't give any advice on anything higher yet..good luck I have a blast just doing them at 5 to 10 ft..

Raptor 50 Titan with DX7, GY401, and TT Redline 53 is Awsome!

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02-06-2008 12:43 AM  10 years agoPost 5
Yug

rrMaster

UK. Herts

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After a few flameouts your sim practice will pay off as you will be forced into bring it in safely every time. That will build your confidence.
Alternatively, just imagine you're flying the sim

Vegetable rights and Peace

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02-06-2008 12:49 AM  10 years agoPost 6
heliboy1023

rrVeteran

Tinton Falls, NJ

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I grew a set of balls which fit into the pair of pants I had to change into.

But for real, just go for it. Start at around 10 ft or so, where you just need to flair. As you get higher, you have to keep lowering the throttle stick. Soon you will get to the point where you are around -3/-4 pitch, and will knew the hieght to flair at.

I did this for 2 full tanks, and after that could auto pretty well tail in. Now I just need to work on nose in.

You know you have to many heli's only when your wallet is empty.

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02-06-2008 12:51 AM  10 years agoPost 7
jschenck

rrProfessor

La Vista, NE.

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02-06-2008 12:54 AM  10 years agoPost 8
cannibal440

rrApprentice

cookeville, tennessee USA

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i was flying my R90 a couple of weeks ago and had it in a hover about 10 feet above the ground. one of the glow plugs shot out and i had to auto it back down. you would be surprised what youre capable of in a moments notice. im like you and not quite brave enough to take that jump and kill the motor in mid-air. since then i doublecheck that my glow plugs are tight. i had no trouble gently bringing it down but i was only 10 feet up. im sure theres a lot of room for error lets say 20+ feet.

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02-06-2008 12:57 AM  10 years agoPost 9
Jeff polisena

rrElite Veteran

westpalmbeachflorida usa

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OK heli said it,start there and get used to you collective management,
then practice landing under power in same direction as if you were going to auto once you are comfortable just hit throttle hold and fly it in remembering you still can control heli you can also practice bail outs the first couple of times hit throttle hold hover down a few feet then turn throttle hold off and fly out

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02-06-2008 01:02 AM  10 years agoPost 10
jschenck

rrProfessor

La Vista, NE.

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above 20' and below about 40' from a hover you get into the dangerous area, especially with no wind.

Doing baby auto's (10' or less) really helps. After that, start your first big auto from at least 100' with a decent amount of forward speed, but not really fast, just normal circuit speed straight into the wind. Hit the throttle hold when you are over the flight line, listen to the blades, don't use too much negative (about 4-6 deg.), don't use too much cyclic, keep the heli just slightly moving forward in the wind. when it's about 6' in the air pull back to stop the forward movement, keep negative collective. When it stops moving forward go into a hover and just land it. key is smooth control inputs.

Make sure your pitch curves are the same for throttle hold and flight. You don't want a surprise pitch change on a bail out.

On the sim, practice your bail out!!! If you are coming down and it doesn't feel right, bail out.

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02-06-2008 01:06 AM  10 years agoPost 11
jschenck

rrProfessor

La Vista, NE.

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oh, on the sim practice with the 46 size heli. The Dominion 90 is way too easy to auto. You may even want to play with the gravity, lift or other settings to make it a bit harder.

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02-06-2008 01:34 AM  10 years agoPost 12
Santiago P

rrProfessor

South West, Ohio

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I dont know how much you want to learn about autos, but if you are a tecnical individual you may enjoy the basic aerodynamics. It sure helpded me understand and discern what the rotor is doing when I do an auto.

http://www.dynamicflight.com/aerodynamics/autos/

Once you start doing the real thing you will recognize a distictive sound when you hit the "right" vortex ring ratio that makes the heli almost float all the way down.

Also, how and when you flair, will count for how much hang time you will have once you reach the last 2-5 feet.

good luck

Santiago

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02-06-2008 02:01 AM  10 years agoPost 13
flustercluck

rrVeteran

Newnan Ga (Just S. of ATL)

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here's kinda what I did:

a) ensured pitch curves were the same in normal, IU1, and throttle hold

b) in hold, I added 35% expo to PIT & AIL to ensure any control inputs I did wouldnt throw the heli around during descent... remembering that with autos, you're only gonna go one direction, and there's little room for corrections before Mamma Earth rises up to greet you

c) started the heli & ran the throttle up until the she was light on the skids, then started hitting throttle hold to see what happens- then while still in hold brought the collective down, flip the hold off, lather, rinse, repeat. just wanted to watch the tail

d) next practiced baby autos, feathering down from about a foot high up to about chest-high, to get the feel of the heli whan you hit the hold switch- do that about 11,467 times until you're comfortable stopping descent and touching down gently

e) after getting comfortable with that, I would fly around, get the heli in slow, level, fwd flt (kinda side-in) from about 20 ft up, and again hit hold to see what happens.. the first few times, I only had the hold on for a maybe 2 seconds, but it felt like an ETERNITY

f) after doing that about 16 million times in all different directions and altitudes, it was actually "do or die" time, but not by choice!!!...I ran oput of gas!! no sh*t!! I managed to get the heli down in one pc but it weren't pretty!!.. had a big bounce at the end and I was sure I collapsed the skids... but, she was in one piece <at that point, I had to change my pants, obviously>

notes:

1) I think it helps to be at least comfortable with nose-in, since in a lot of cases when you get better you'll be bringing the heli in towards you... but while you learn, you can still practice tail-in autos away from you since you'll likely land 50-feet away the first few times anyway... unfortunately, the further the heli gets, the harder it is to see

2) note 2- forward momentum helps

3) note 3- a slight, steady breeze helps

4) make sure you're in normal mode before you hit hold, in case you have a missed approach and have to abort

for me the hardest part of being able to consistent do 'nice' autos is nailing that flare at the end when you're about 3-feet off the deck; you gotta arrest that fwd momentum so she'll settle down nicely on the skids... if not, you may be moving too fast and may have to abort and then a go-around, and I for one sure don't like coming off that hold switch when I'm only a few feet off the deck...whoa!!

with all that said, I personally think a well-executed auto is one of the coolest things there is about r/c heli's.. just wish I were better at it

good luck!
jeff

ps- were you guys aware that Nathan, down at ronlund, won the auto contest at IRCHA up in Muncie last summer? sure would like to see a vid clip of that!!

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02-06-2008 02:13 AM  10 years agoPost 14
bigdad390

rrVeteran

East. Liverpool, Ohio

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Here is how I learned. Start in normal mode, set low pitch to provide a nice controllable decent. Once you are comfortable with chopping the throttle /collective in foward flight and recovering, just hit throttle hold and land. Once you do it, you will say there was nothing to it.

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02-06-2008 02:20 AM  10 years agoPost 15
thenewguy

rrElite Veteran

Corvallis, Oregon Where there is liquid sunshine!

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Well,

I can tell you how we teach the newbies at our field. It works great. First your heli should be set up correctly. Your pitch curves are the same in all modes, IE 10 and 10 from normal to idle up. The only thing you change is your normal mode throttle curve. You should be hovering at 3/4 stick. If so change your throttle curve in normal mode to something like this. If it is a 5 point curve.

10
15
20
45
100
Make sure it can hover at 3/4 stick.
What this allows is to gain altitude above hover. Then allows the motor to come off the clutch under half stick. Play with the curves to where you fell OK. It works really well because you have a great bail out. You just give more and more collective. Thats how we train the guys wanting to learn auto's, then when thy feel good. They just throw the throttle hold switch and do a real one.

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02-06-2008 03:00 AM  10 years agoPost 16
jschenck

rrProfessor

La Vista, NE.

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I managed to get the heli down in one pc but it weren't pretty!!.. had a big bounce at the end and I was sure I collapsed the skids... but, she was in one piece
oh yea, an important note. Run the main blades tight, as tight as you can and still have the blades swing out. If you bounce an auto with really low headspeed the tight blades will help keep them from folding back and hitting the tail boom. Also help keep them from jerking back and breaking things if you bail out with a very low headspeed.

first few auto's I kinda turned my self to orient the radio in approximately the same direction the heli was facing, helps with orientation. This is the same trick I use to help new airplane pilots shoot their first landings. You want to try and have the heli touching down in front of where the radio is facing. e.g. if you are facing directly in front of the runway center and are shooting the auto from left to right you want to hit throttle hold when it's just a bit to the left and shoot for a bit to the right with your shoulders leaning to the right.

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02-06-2008 03:14 AM  10 years agoPost 17
subarus

rrNovice

South East Asia

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assuming your heli is setup correctly, here's what u need to do:

1) autorotate from 1 feet level, next 2 feet then 3 feet. This is relatively safe exercises, the worse that could happen is a bouncy landing and you got a loosen nut or belt here and there..

the goal is to regulate a soft landing

2) autorotate from 200ft up... down to about 20ft and disengage auto.

the goals are to maintain rotor rpm by regulating the correct pitch, steer the heli on the landing trajectory for precise spot landing, learn flare technique to slow down forward speed.

3) combine 1 and 2. preferably against wind direction.

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02-06-2008 03:23 AM  10 years agoPost 18
patriot21

rrKey Veteran

Byron,MN

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a good set of blades help too... woodies aren;t the best for the autos....
not sure what you are using

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02-06-2008 03:28 AM  10 years agoPost 19
Dilbeck

rrElite Veteran

Springdale Arkansas

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Man i never thought it would be so easy, Are you kidding me? I got butterflys just reading some of the replies. 11,467 times and i should have right? Ive seen some autos on video and they looked awsome. Like the setting the t/h to just enough to hover and work it down a little at a time but i guess that is for higher up not 3-8 feet off the ground no? Lot of good advise here from good pilots and will start working on a little of all the replies to see what works for me. One other thing is i dont have a constant tail drive but heard on another post the hawk ate up to much rotor speed with it than with out it, Any knowledge on this subject?

Clint

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02-06-2008 03:35 AM  10 years agoPost 20
jschenck

rrProfessor

La Vista, NE.

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while wood blades may not offer the best auto performance my experience is they are pretty dang good. I learned with wood blades and I think it really helped. I knew that if I blew the auto a $25 (or $13 for my Trex) set of blades was lost instead of the $65-$100 set. I think having a bit of wind makes more of a difference. The pucker factor was lower with the woodies so I was more likely to try the auto's. Plus when I did break a set seem like less stuff was torn up. Just make sure to glue the roots on really well and don't spin them past their stated redline (1700 rpm for TT600's, 2700 for the Align 325 Pro's). I also learned basic flips loops and rolls with wood blades. I mostly fly CF blades now because I'm at the 2000 rpm headspeed but I still have wood blades on my TT-50 powered Raptor and it flies just fine.

If money is not so much of a concern then composite blades offer lower maintenance and usually (not always) better performance. Wood blades do fly well though.

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HomeAircraftHelicopterHelicopter Main Discussion › The best way to learn auto rotation after the sim?
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