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HomeAircraftHelicopterBeginners Corner › First heli?????
08-14-2010 05:10 PM  8 years agoPost 1
wanaflyhelis

rrNovice

Ontario-CANADA

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Hi im wanting to get into rc heli flying but am totally lost when it comes to choosing my first bird. Iv looked at a few on some websites but cant decide what i want. I understand that it is best to start with a coaxial (if im not mistaken thats what u call the ones with two rotors?) but is there any way i can get it with a collective pitch? If so what kind? Is the Axe cpv3 any good?? THANKS for the help!!

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08-14-2010 05:27 PM  8 years agoPost 2
Heli_KV

rrKey Veteran

Ottawa, Canada

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Good first heli is SIM. There are no coax CP helis. Please try to make a search on this topic here. This question is raised quite often and there are a lot of extensive answers.

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08-14-2010 06:01 PM  8 years agoPost 3
predatorman

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Falkland Islands

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Get a Simulator first you cant waste money on that...theres a few on the market...'Phoenix' is a good one...'Reflex' is another good one..and 'Realflight G3' get one with its own dummy radio...no messing about then, should work straightaway

Quality takes........time!

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08-14-2010 07:53 PM  8 years agoPost 4
Heli Ace X

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Crystal Lake, IL

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I started with the msr. Then got the blade 400. Should have started the collective first but I didnt. Both helis are great. If you get a sim (Has yet to pay itself off) get the phoenix sim. Its the best one out there. Realflight isnt a real sim its more like an arcade game.

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08-14-2010 10:50 PM  8 years agoPost 5
predatorman

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Falkland Islands

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Well if the cas is burning a hole in your pocket and you want a real heli to play with; then I would go for a Blade CX2 or any other of the co axial type helis out there. You cant really go wrong, and if it has a free sim with it (usually FMS) then thats ok. FMS is freeware btw, but you will have the radio to plug into your PC...a bonus.

The Co axial helis are usually fixed pitch type, and fly quite well...they are for indoors so need a large room or a gym. make sure to get a Mode 2 radio with it. The good thing about these cheap helis is that the controls usually represent that of a more serious model...so this gives you some stick time.

FMS is not a perfect sim, but it will give you practice, taken seriously. You can set things like wind strength and so on, not bad. The biggest limits are the models parameters, like weight and so on...the more serious sims are quite expensive but well worth it.

I use FMS for a very long time, helped me a lot. I now have Phoenix, which is good as I can set up a model to behave like my real one.

As for more serious models? heck you are spoilt for choice. I would say you want a minimum of a 450 type/size heli, they can cope with a breeze and can be tamed down to provide a good learner heli.

Beware of things like cheap battery packs, they can and will let you down...like badly soldered wires and cheap bad connections coming apart. DO stick with the 2.4ghz type radio...FM ones might be cheaper now but coupled with electric helis they can suffer problems due to electrical fields. 2.4GHZ copes very well with this problem.

Parts? you will crash at some point...are spares around? can you afford them? figure on the average crunch costing around one third the helis FIRST cost, its a good rule of thumb to go by.

I have a Trex 450 and cant praise this enough, parts are cheap...upgrades are a bit pricey but VERY well made. Battery packs are not a stupid price, and helis like this have a huge fan base so help is never far away.

Nitro is an option, big choice but same rules apply as to crash costs. Nitro is expensive but the 30 size helis are not bad to run, and with a decent flight battery you can go a few tanks and get a LOT of airtime.

Sorry for my lengthy post, bit like a book! do take your time in choosing, its silly to rush into it.

Meantime, get that sim!

Quality takes........time!

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08-14-2010 11:54 PM  8 years agoPost 6
simages

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Cold Spring, NY

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During your quest......
make sure to include looking into the Hirobo SRB Quark, about $232 RTF. Although, the control is FM the foam blades will have you hovering out of the box. Definately consider a simulator especially if your just starting out in the hobby. You have many options to choose from FREE to $200 and up. It's a tool like all the other things we'll be investing in "if" you enter the world of Helis.

AMA No: SIMAGES

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08-16-2010 04:18 AM  8 years agoPost 7
wanaflyhelis

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Ontario-CANADA

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im sorry guys i worded that wrong. What i meant was can i learn on a collective pitch heli like the Axe cpv3???

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08-16-2010 04:30 AM  8 years agoPost 8
turboomni

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East of the Equator

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you can learn on most things IF you have SIM experience AND a heli that someone in your area can setup and coach you on,,,
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Setup is everything, All my heli's can fly far better than I can pilot them

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08-16-2010 05:55 AM  8 years agoPost 9
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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Simulator is priceless. Phoenix is by far the best choice for a heli sim. Hours spent on a decent sim will save you countless dollars in repair bills down the road.

As to a heli choice -- what is your budget and how serious are you about buying an RC heli?

You want a collective pitch heli, that is a good first step and will immediately steer you away from the coaxial helis and even the single-rotor helis such as the Hirobo Quark, the Blade MSR and all of its incarnations. Most coaxial helis fall way short if you ever want to get outside. They are pretty much designed for indoor flying, and perform poorly outside on anything other than a dead-calm day.

The Blade 400 is a decent heli that is relatively inexpensive, of reasonable quality, has good parts support, and gives you a fighting chance at being successful. It would be the "minimum" that you should consider. It's not the greatest heli out there, but as I said, it will do the job, and at a reasonable entry level cost. Experienced fliers in your area should be able to help you get this bird airborne.

There are many "lesser" collective pitch helis, some fly, some require lots of attention and fiddling, all will test your patience and wallet. Avoid these at all cost. Not only is the heli of questionable quality, any electronics sold with them is usually second rate.

Are there any GOOD, active RC Heli Pilots close by who can help you with build, setup, and instruction? If so, and if you are serious, and your budget can handle it, the minimum recommendation would be an Align Trex 500 -- probably the superior combo, since it includes all of the electronics short of batteries and transmitter/receiver. Add to that a Spektrum DX7 transmitter with AR6200 or AR7000 receiver. Throw in some 6S 2650 mah 30C LiPos and decent charger, you'll have a recipe for success.

Local fliers who are good and accomplished will have no trouble helping with that particular setup.

Yes, you could go the Trex 450 route -- they are not bad helis at all, however the 500 is nearly a perfect "first heli" and one that will take you wherever you want to go with helis. It's a good size, has great stability, is rugged, and a heli you can grow with. So is the DX7 radio.

As for the AXE...run away. It would fall into that category of "lesser quality collective pitch helis". The Blade "CP" series -- CP, CP Pro, CP+...marginal at best.

Beware the trap of buying a dirt-cheap "first" heli and cheap electronics. They will frustrate you, empty your wallet, and leave you disappointed and wondering why you ever thought RC helis were something fun to do.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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08-16-2010 08:29 AM  8 years agoPost 10
Heli Ace X

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Crystal Lake, IL

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dkshema what is your problem with the msr. Its a great heli. Nice cat by the way.

As for the sim all of you are right about one thing, get the phoenix. Has yet to pay itself off (Like all of you are saying it will on countless hours.)

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08-16-2010 12:33 PM  8 years agoPost 11
EmbdenMe Heli

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Embden, Maine - USA

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New guy here but wanted to weigh in on the simulator. DEFINITLY BUY ONE!! I purchased the Phoenix software about two weeks ago and have been using it every night since. The cost of around $175.00 (includes a decent transmitter) paid for itself in the first “flight” (note the quotes around the word flight – was more of a crash and burn). I was fortunate in that the local hobby shop owner was looking out for my best interest when I went in looking for a helicopter – he steered me clear of purchasing a full blown collective pitch helicopter and pointed me to the simulator. As mentioned above I’m in my second week and am still working on hovering in all directions – I can’t even began to guess how much money I would have spent at this point if I was flying an actual heli – more then likely it would have ended up on EBay as parts.
Another nice point about the simulator is that it lets you try many different models. I was originally thinking about purchasing a Blade 400 – however after trying that for a while on the simulator I tried the Trex 500 (along with several others) – I’ve now decided I’m definitely going with the Trex 500 – seems to be much more beginner friendly then many of the others (and still within my price range).
Best of luck to you.

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08-16-2010 02:49 PM  8 years agoPost 12
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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The OP wanted a collective pitch heli. The MSR doesn't fit that requirement.

The MSR is OK as a fun little indoor heli, and maybe the bigger brother is OK as a fixed-pitch outdoor heli.

But if you are serious about wanting to fly an RC heli, AND you want collective pitch, the MSR ain't gonna be in the running.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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08-16-2010 04:16 PM  8 years agoPost 13
sewerfly

rrApprentice

el cajon CA USA

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What ever you do I suggest you never buy an AXE cp3 or a Honey bee cp2 there Junk

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08-16-2010 04:19 PM  8 years agoPost 14
sewerfly

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el cajon CA USA

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Find support in your area. Google RC Club and find one close to you so you can hook up with people that fly we are everywhere

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08-16-2010 09:38 PM  8 years agoPost 15
Bundian

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Fort Lauderdale, FL USA

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If I would start right now, I would get a sim first (Phoenix), than when i'm comfortable on the sim I would get either a T Rex 450 or a T rex 550 (preferred) depending on the budget.

Sim will save you a ton of money, and you can practice any time you want, than if you get any of the birds mentioned the parts are easily accessible anywhere and they are realtively cheap

My 2 cents....

Fly it like you stole it!!!

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08-17-2010 04:20 PM  8 years agoPost 16
Dusty1000

rrApprentice

Glasgow, U.K.

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...Honey bee cp2 there Junk
So I've heard. The HoneyBee FP on the other hand makes a great trainer.
As it has a 90 degree flybar, you have to learn to balance it in the air just like you do with any CP heli, which is quite different from self-stabilising FP helis such as the mSR.

Learn to fly with a HoneyBee FP, move onto something like a 450 and you will find it wonderfully stable, and dare I say, easy to fly in comparison.

I can understand why you want to start out with a CP heli, but it'll be a while before you're flying it upside down. When you consider you'll be buying $20 - $30 in parts each and every time you crash a 400/450, not to mention bench time, the HBFP makes a lot of sense. Most times you crash, nothing will break at all, and when it does it'll cost maybe $5 in parts and take 10 minutes to fix.

So not only do you get to spend much more time learning to fly, rather than learning to repair, and set up set up set up, but the HBFP will likely have paid for itself many times over by the time you're ready to move on

http://www.eflightwiki.com/eflightw...your_helicopter

Sims are great for learning stick movements and I wouldn't be without one, but you really have to learn to fly a real heli by learning to fly with a real heli

Dusty

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08-18-2010 09:17 PM  8 years agoPost 17
sansone

rrNovice

North Florida USA

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if I was starting over.. simulator, and more simulator, then trex 450.. I don't really feel the coaxials helped me except for looking up while holding something

Fusion 50 FBL / Futaba 8FG / Beastx

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08-22-2010 06:21 AM  8 years agoPost 18
txkawboi

rrApprentice

Katy, TX USA

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Food for thought?
This is one of those subjects that's just that; subjective. There are many factors to consider when choosing a "first" heli like 'are hobby shops nearby for replacement parts?' If you're a "gotta have it right now" kinda person, I'd say go with what's available at your local hobby shop. That way, you can get your kit(s) and parts right away or if the "urge" hits you and it will (this is an addiction). If you are an internet junkie, your options are limitless.

Size is another factor to consider. A few years back, the 450 size helis were the best "bang for you buck" because they were inexpensive to purchase and get up in the air. They were even more so when they fell out of the air. Now days, the "bigger boys" have come down in startup and maintenance/repair cost due to 450s and "clones" so it makes the decision of a "beginner heli" that much more difficult. Bigger usually means more stable and visible from a distance but also limits where you can fly. Smaller offers more versatility in flying sites i.e. your back yard but are generally less stable and harder to see from a distance.

Not that I wanna cloud your decision any further but I just figured I'd offer some additional food for thought. I do agree with getting a sim though. That's the best training tool next to an experienced pilot at your beckoning call. Whatever you decide, have fun and enjoy but please excercise extreme caution because they when bite, they bite hard!!!

It's better to have flown and crashed than to never to have flown at all.

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08-23-2010 08:24 PM  7 years agoPost 19
predatorman

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Falkland Islands

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I think what it boils down to, regarding the sheer choice of package 'deals', is getting good quality electrical gear ie radio system, servos, gyro and so on.

A while back one particular brand became known for bad electrical parts, otherwise the hardware looked great. When you are starting out you want to fly...not f66k around fixing small niggly 'spikes' etc.

Buy cheap...buy twice is the old motto, I would only reccomend the little coaxial helis if you want to fly and fly NOW. Otherwise I wouldnt buy anything more than that. Anything else of good qaulity is going to cost a bit. I just dont like the various clones getting around on the market, thats just my opinion. Dont forget the hiiden costs though, even with more established makes...for one you will need a decent charger for your Lipo packs, and decent LiPo packs too.

Quality takes........time!

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08-30-2010 12:39 PM  7 years agoPost 20
wanaflyhelis

rrNovice

Ontario-CANADA

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thnanks for all the input guys!! I finally just went and bought one. The Blade 120 SR. So far i really like it, seems to be extremely tough.Havent broke anything!! yet...

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