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HomeAircraftHelicopterBeginners Corner › New to Electric - 500, 550 or 600
05-21-2018 03:46 PM  3 months agoPost 1
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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Getting back into helis and coming to terms that my Raptor 50 is of little use any more, possibly only good for breaking down for spares.

When I left the hobby over 6 years ago I had only reached the stage of tail-in hovering and tentative flat circuits.

I'm not really interested in 3D, more into realistic flying and gentle aerobatics.

So if I were to go electric, say an Align T-Rex, would I be best going for a 500, 550, 600.

I'm looking for a compromise between smooth, stable flight and affordable purchase and spares.

On the price thing, I appreciate that nothing associated with model helicopters is affordable, but what is making me wince is having to dump a perfectly good heli and buy again with practically no reuse.

Cheers,

Nigel

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05-21-2018 04:18 PM  3 months agoPost 2
JuanRodriguez

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The Villages, Florida

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Wouldn’t it make more sense to use what you have to get started again?? There are still parts for your Raptor that can be found . The R50 is a fine heli !!

Once you’re back in the swing of things then think about something else .

I would also suggest you get some local help and see what others are flying in the size and type of heli you’re considering. That way it’s much easier to get the help needed ....

Been there, done that and old enough to know better.....

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05-21-2018 05:03 PM  3 months agoPost 3
DemetriusUSN

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Virginia Beach, Va USA

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https://rc.runryder.com/t818646p1/

Minicopter Diabolo 800, Minicopter Triabolo 700, Minicopter Diabolo 700, Minicopter 550,Compass 6hvu, Devil 380

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05-21-2018 06:27 PM  3 months agoPost 4
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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JuanRodriguez
Wouldn’t it make more sense to use what you have to get started again?? There are still parts for your Raptor that can be found . The R50 is a fine heli !!
Sorry, yes that is the intention, but just thinking ahead and realising that while parts are available it is only by virtue of people breaking down their old helis and selling the parts as spares so it may not be easy to find them and ultimately I get the impression that nitro is dying out and electric is the only way forward. Even nitro fuel is getting hard to find, I went into one of the UK's biggest RC specialist stores at the weekend and they barely had any fuel and what they had was hellishly expensive.

Cheers,

Nigel

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05-21-2018 07:08 PM  3 months agoPost 5
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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Thanks for the link, looks nice.

And buying second hand may well be the way to go for me because I’m not looking for something to do extreme 3D.

But I’m in the UK so will have to look nearer to home when the times comes.

Cheers,

Nigel

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05-22-2018 05:55 PM  89 days agoPost 6
w8qz

rrVeteran

Grand Rapids, MI - USA

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There is a source for new Raptor 50 (or 'Klone 50' ) parts, albeit pricey - helikraft.com
The 2 times I've ordered there, I had no problems. The main downside is that shipping charges seem high
I plan to keep running my Raptor for the future, using that source.

"The helicopter is much easier to design than the aeroplane, but is worthless when done."

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05-22-2018 06:30 PM  89 days agoPost 7
ticedoff8

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Morgan Hill, CA. USA

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Flush out the engine, get new flight batteries and fly the R50 as is.
There are still replacement parts available (in case of crash) and it fits your experience level.

After you get to a point where you are getting bored with the R50, then you will have a better idea about what the best "next helicopter" is for you.
It could be electric or another nitro.

Be warned that a e-conversion of the R50 results in a Frankinstein's Copter where you spend more time troubleshooting and repairing than flying.

And, a fresh start in e-Heli would require a pretty large investment in support systems (chargers, batteries and such) not to mention the cost of an e-heli airframe and components.

But, if you decided to move to e-Heli, look at the Goblin 500 or 570 as an alternative to the R50 sized nitro.
Use the Brain 2 or the iKON 2 flybarless controller with the Futaba S-Bus and a Castle Creations Edge HV ESC.

Because you posted this here and in the Thunder Tiger section, I assume you REALLY want to hear "Go Electric" and buy something new.

Believe 1/2 of what you see and none of what you hear.
Fake News will be the downfall of our Republic!

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05-22-2018 07:23 PM  89 days agoPost 8
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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w8qz
There is a source for new Raptor 50 (or 'Klone 50' ) parts, albeit pricey - helikraft.com
WARNING - the URL is heli-kraft.com.

Using the URL originally quoted seems to open all sorts of dodgy things.

Other than that, whilst the site looks good, it’s not that useful for me in the UK.

Cheers,

Nigel

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05-22-2018 11:52 PM  88 days agoPost 9
datidun

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N Ireland

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Fastlad, Midlands, Aligntrex all sell fuel including South of Ireland, how can it be hard to find?, you stated your not into 3d, so 10 to 15 nitro would be to your advantage.

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05-23-2018 07:45 AM  88 days agoPost 10
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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datidun
Fastlad, Midlands, Aligntrex all sell fuel including South of Ireland, how can it be hard to find?, you stated your not into 3d, so 10 to 15 nitro would be to your advantage.
I didn't say impossible to find I said hard to find. You can't really mail order any more and many brands have disappeared. So I can get fuel but for me it needs a specific round trip of at least 40 miles.

And that is to my closest store, Sussex Model Centre, which when I visited at the weekend had very little choice, and very limited stock. They told me that it was best to plan ahead tell them what I wanted and then collect it a few weeks later.

Any way plan to go to the Wings and Wheels show so will pick up some there.

In Nitro content my engine instructions say 18-30% so is it okay to run 10-15%

Cheers,

Nigel

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05-23-2018 11:14 AM  88 days agoPost 11
datidun

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N Ireland

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Biggest brand in the UK would be Optifuel, try the Optifuel 12 percent for your style of flying.

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05-23-2018 01:18 PM  88 days agoPost 12
w8qz

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Grand Rapids, MI - USA

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My apologies for the bad URL - no hacking intended - just going from (not so sharp) memory.

"The helicopter is much easier to design than the aeroplane, but is worthless when done."

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05-23-2018 02:33 PM  88 days agoPost 13
datidun

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N Ireland

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??

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05-23-2018 03:37 PM  88 days agoPost 14
balsabasher

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Central Ohio, USA

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To answer your question and stated needs;
"So if I were to go electric, say an Align T-Rex, would I be best going for a 500, 550, 600."
"I'm looking for a compromise between smooth, stable flight and affordable purchase and spares."

From my own experience, I would suggest a Trex 550.

Blades; what goes around, comes around!

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05-29-2018 04:57 AM  82 days agoPost 15
conbones

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panama city beach FL

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go 600. bigger is better. it really is. though a a trex 500 has always bin a nice flier and will fly around 10 minutes on a 5 cell pack with your flying experience.

Rush 750, cc160hv, vbar silverline
Agile 550, HW120hv, vbar silverline
goblin 500, cc100, ikon
Devil380, cc75lite, minivbar

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06-19-2018 03:12 PM  61 days agoPost 16
Heli_Splatter

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USA

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600 is more dangerous
I really don't think beginners should start on a 550 or 600 sized helicopter. Crash costs are much higher and the larger heli is dangerous if it gets loose. Personally, the 450 is cost-effective. It can still hurt you if you get tangled up with it. I like the software solution more. Crashes are no cost and until you can hover, you don't really need to be flying the real thing.

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06-19-2018 06:31 PM  61 days agoPost 17
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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Heli_Splatter
600 is more dangerous
I really don't think beginners should start on a 550 or 600 sized helicopter. Crash costs are much higher and the larger heli is dangerous if it gets loose. Personally, the 450 is cost-effective. It can still hurt you if you get tangled up with it. I like the software solution more. Crashes are no cost and until you can hover, you don't really need to be flying the real thing.
I take what you are saying and if I were starting from scratch it would be very sensible advice. But in my case if I do decide to go electric it will be for a 550 because:

1) I'm not such a beginner. I can hover comfortably tail in and side on, I can move the heli around in the hover as I choose. And I can do simple circuits though I need to build up my confidence more.

2) I already have a Raptor 50 which is 600 size. I originally started with a Century Hawk 30 but quickly sold that and bought the Raptor 50 because everyone in the club I joined had Raptors and no one had a Hawk. I also chose the 50 because I liked the extra visibility and stability that came with it.

3) When I started anything smaller than a 30 was not an option unless you considered the tiny electrics that were just starting to come out. So I am used to a 30/50 size now and don't think I would like to drop down to a smaller heli.

But I agree if I was starting out with no previous experience then a 450 would be a good place to start - but for me, for the reasons above, if I am going to go electric it will be with a 550.

Cheers,

Nigel

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06-19-2018 07:27 PM  61 days agoPost 18
Ladymagic

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South Korea

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Heli_Splatter
600 is more dangerous
I really don't think beginners should start on a 550 or 600 sized helicopter. Crash costs are much higher and the larger heli is dangerous if it gets loose.
Relatively speaking, a 600 is no less dangerous than a 700 and no more dangerous than a 450 or 550 for that matter. Any heli is dangerous if it is not respected and not maintained properly. In the hands of an idiot, even a 250 can cause permanent damage to someone. I teach new pilots to treat every heli like it can kill them just like the military teaches us to treat every weapon we handle like its loaded even when we know it's not.

I have taught my share of aspiring new pilots and I recommend a new pilot learn the way they plan to fly, on what they plan to fly with.

And don't ever buy a heli based on crash cost. Crashes happen, but you are setting yourself up to fail if you only buy one because it's cheap to crash...buy it because its fun to fly. Don't plan to crash often...it's a mental state of mind.

So, if you don't plan to fly a 450 long term, don't buy it just to quickly outgrow it and end up selling it for a fraction of what you paid to get it.

I would recommend a 550. It's not impossible but, definitely much harder to out grow. You will get plenty of stability, power and since all a 550 is is just a shortened 600 with shorter blades, you can always upgrade cheaply if you want to go 600.

It is intimidating at first, but a 700 is actually an excellent trainer if you have a good buddy or you take the learning process seriously and in manageable steps. It's silky smooth, more floaty, forgiving, and has much more accurate/higher resolution and input range which allows trainees to slow down and focus more on flying technique instead of just managing not to crash. While you can learn on them, 450's are just too fidgety to be good trainers; they are more a novelty class IMHO.

I always say don't let the fear mongers scare you away from something larger if that's your desire and you can afford it. I trained two pilots on 700s..they learned quickly without crashing....plus, they didn't die.

Mellisa

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06-20-2018 01:25 AM  60 days agoPost 19
Heli_Splatter

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USA

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I started with 450 electrics, that is what I know, that is what I espouse. It is not that either one of us is wrong. If you can fly a 450, you can fly the larger aircraft. I have a small pocketbook. I am not flying a $1k aircraft until I know what I am doing. I have an 800 now. Flys great, but flying the 450 is rather enjoyable too.

I have been wacked by a 450 blade on the bench. That hurt. Then I was wacked by a 500 blade. That hurt a hell of a lot more. I really respect them now. I don't want to see the 800 loose.

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06-20-2018 02:40 PM  60 days agoPost 20
Ladymagic

rrKey Veteran

South Korea

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Heli_Splatter
I started with 450 electrics, that is what I know
Yeah, that is fairly common in this hobby. People have a habit of preaching their own experiences as though it is bible. A lot of times, you'll end up leading new pilot down a path they didn't' want and right out of the hobby and you don't even realize it.

You come to realize that every new pilot has different skill levels, aspirations, finances, and ultimately, desire to listen, learn and comprehend. It's best to let them choose and help guide them smartly. It's like guiding them down a path by their hand versus shoving them. It is always better if they feel they have choices and their over experience with the hobby is more fruitful.

Mellisa

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