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How hard are rc helis to fly compared to drones?

How hard are rc helis to fly compared to drones?

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Old 12-08-2016, 12:26 AM
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Default How hard are rc helis to fly compared to drones?

I've been flying a basic 6 channel quad drone I assembled out of bits and spares. It goes well and is ultra stable thanks to the DJI Naza-M gyro. I became a little bored with it after a few months and bought a HK Assault Reaper, found this faster and more fun but also after a while I've felt like I've mastered it and also find it a bit dull (I don't race or anything fancy). Now a friend said if I want a challenge I should buy a 450 heli like a Blade or Trex.
Never flown anything like that other than a fixed pitch cheapy. A few people said they are pretty easy to master once you get the hang but others say they are pure evil and take a lot of practice and commitment and be prepared to crash many times (yet to crash my quads )

Any advice? I have most of the radio hear and batteries so I really just need the helicopter.
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Old 12-08-2016, 12:39 AM
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Default Easier than the cynics might lead you to believe.

Helis will take more focus.. They don't fly themselves so you have to be watching and reacting to their every movement and be ready to react. Quads tend to hover, in one place without a lot of human intervention.. Especially ones with gps. Helis require a pilot which based on your experience are skills you possess. You'll just need to be using them every second when you're flying a 450.

Originally Posted by WallRocket;1476076

6
I've been flying a basic 6 channel quad drone I assembled out of bits and spares. It goes well and is ultra stable thanks to the DJI Naza-M gyro. I became a little bored with it after a few months and bought a HK Assault Reaper, found this faster and more fun but also after a while I've felt like I've mastered it and also find it a bit dull (I don't race or anything fancy). Now a friend said if I want a challenge I should buy a 450 heli like a Blade or Trex.
Never flown anything like that other than a fixed pitch cheapy. A few people said they are pretty easy to master once you get the hang but others say they are pure evil and take a lot of practice and commitment and be prepared to crash many times (yet to crash my quads )

Any advice? I have most of the radio hear and batteries so I really just need the helicopter.
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Old 12-08-2016, 01:25 AM
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Originally Posted by WallRocket View Post
I've been flying a basic 6 channel quad drone I assembled out of bits and spares. It goes well and is ultra stable thanks to the DJI Naza-M gyro. I became a little bored with it after a few months and bought a HK Assault Reaper, found this faster and more fun but also after a while I've felt like I've mastered it and also find it a bit dull (I don't race or anything fancy). Now a friend said if I want a challenge I should buy a 450 heli like a Blade or Trex.
Never flown anything like that other than a fixed pitch cheapy. A few people said they are pretty easy to master once you get the hang but others say they are pure evil and take a lot of practice and commitment and be prepared to crash many times (yet to crash my quads )

Any advice? I have most of the radio hear and batteries so I really just need the helicopter.
Just imagine flying a quadcopter without any flight controller (no stabilization or electronics assisted flight) thats how it feels like flying a collective pitch helicopter. When flying a helicopter you're are the flight controller and stabilization system...hands on manually...you're mentally 500% fully concentrated on flying a helicopter. Flying a quad/multirotor uses up only 5% mental power. Just prepare to spend dozen of helicopter rotor blades and spare parts on your first flight, its going to be PITA. Usually those who can fly collective pitch helicopter can master any type of aircraft easily. Multirotor/Quadcopter flying skills is for kiddies. I started flying R/C flight on helicopter few years back before into planes, those days theres no drone or special technology to do computer assisted flight, just crappy gyro on my collective pitch heli Align 450 and 600 size heli.
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Old 12-08-2016, 02:19 AM
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Thanks for that, I thought the modern helis would be pretty stable as they have gyros as well? The one I looked at had a BeastX (a eFlight 450X helicopter) gyro which looked quite flashy. So they don't stable half as much as a quad gyro? Both my quads will hover almost dead still if I go hands off, assume this won't happen with a heli?
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Old 12-08-2016, 12:12 PM
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get a flight simulator that you can use your radio thru.. it was very easy for me doing this ..no crashes had to auto rotate a landing 1 hard landing
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Old 12-08-2016, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by WallRocket View Post
Thanks for that, I thought the modern helis would be pretty stable as they have gyros as well? The one I looked at had a BeastX (a eFlight 450X helicopter) gyro which looked quite flashy. So they don't stable half as much as a quad gyro? Both my quads will hover almost dead still if I go hands off, assume this won't happen with a heli?
They do have Gyros, but they are suplemental, you are the controller, it takes people years and years to learn to fly, and it cost some money. CP is awesome, but you have to be committed to put in the time. A simulator will put you well on your way, but like said only if you commit to it. Physics in drones is no where near the sophistication in CP Heli. And thats not even taking into account Nitro Heli!
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Old 12-25-2016, 08:55 PM
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Hi. I am new to RC trucks but have been heavily into helicopters for five years. I am very active on Helifreak. Some of the posts above are not really correct anymore. You can buy collective pitch helicopters that are self stabilizing; both micros and any size kit with the right controller. The conventional wisdom is to start with a prebuilt micro and then move on a to 450, 500, or 550 kit. Blade is probably best for the prebuilt micros. I see the 230S being suggested a lot. After that there are many good choices. Align is fine but tend to come with the electronics chosen for you. Align is mostly what I have. Gaui, Goblin, Synergy, Protos, and Mikado are all solid brands. You can put a self stabilizing FBL controller on any of them. My favorite is the Bavarian Demon. Since they just came out with the new AXON, you can buy the older BD3SX for $180 now. They used to $450. They do both self level and bailout rescue.

There is a lot to learn. Get a decent radio. At least something like the new DX6 (but DX7, DX8 and DX9, DX18) are progressively more full featured. I started out with the much older DX6i which is fine to start. Also, get a sim like Real Flight or Phoenix. Take a look at the Blade 230S and 250 CFX.
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Old 12-26-2016, 05:52 AM
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Take this from a Rc car guy, that started on rc helis 4 to 5 years ago...

Drones/quads that you have been flying are not what Rc helis are.
Total diferent game. A Drone "nowdays" is like an rc car on air.

You left the stick and it stays, nice and stable. Human intervencion is non existence and it fly perfectly. It's cheating and you feel like a pro flying for 25years with experience.

Get a normal 3D heli (collective Pitch) and you will never be able to even hoover for at least 3 years. Mostly you need a simulator and some months of pratice to hoover. I mean just sit on air like you did with a drone with just 10seconds of pratice.

Then you really need a computurized radio, cause mostly you can do anything with one... with a stock radio...forget it! Not going to happen...you are stuck with stock settings and that's a BIG mistake!

Nowdays helis do have software/hardware autoselleveling that will help to keep the 3 axis or 6 axis (drone thing) thing... this means the heli won't flip unless you want. Keep in mind that nose in and tail in the sticks are reversed.... i got 5 years of rc helis and still can't do nose in. I will crash imidiatly. Only fly with tail faced to me.

That is the most demand and SUPER hard thing about rc helis. The reversed sticks when they are flipped or nose in to us. Our human brain needs to be muscled in memory a couple of years because we can't do that kind of stuff. Gravity get's addicted and we only know gravity!
This is for the basic stuff in flying rc helis.... Cause 3D is a whole level diferent of alien capability's.

Drones are cheating in that matter. There is no absolutty any challenge, most dificult part of flying those drones you descrived is plug the lipo..... compared to flying helis.
(they are selled on shopping mall's cause they are manufactered to be selled for the mainstream, not for the pro's or addict's of RC stuff)

Helis had fisically hardware to be safe (cheat) like those 6 axis gyros drones/helis have now... that meant coaxiail or fisical flybar...both are crap and need to go away today...their are only good to start...then what you want is a FLYBARLESS rc heli and a good FBL unit to use 3 or 6axis gyro thing.

Both coaxials and flybared GO with the wind (can't fight the wind) and are no outdoors helis, a little gust of wind and they will GO no matter what you do on the sticks...they are very limited.....

Hope that clears something...

If you want to start on rc helis... nowdays get a BLADE from HH...the brand that meakes Spektrum radios.
Both the 200s and 230s are pretty good and can be tamed and having not the CP (collective pitch) on, you will start to realize what is flying an rc heli.
http://www.bladehelis.com/Products/D...ProdId=BLH2600
http://www.bladehelis.com/230s/
After that you can get a real CP rc heli, but you need years at least 3 of pratice to jump to that. No matter what, and yes you can configure a CP rc heli to behave like a FP (fixed pitch) heli.

All that matter's cause CP are 3D and are a real diferent game...extreme level of flying.

Mostly:
-FP (fixed pitch) heli... the throttle stick is what keeps the heli up and down in the air. Motor power.
-CP (colective pitch) heli... lol... if you jam the throttle stick down it will acelerate down very hard... and throttle up will acelerate up...so where's the stop? at midlle stick! lol Imagine now the reversed when flipped and nose in?
Or any 360 situation...how a human brain can know where to think gravity.... basically the motor RPM's join with the servos that move (change) the pitch of the blade's alltogether...that's why those helis are so DAN bloody fast....basically we GOT motor power (brushless/lipo) and AIR power (from switching the pitch of the blades) altogether...that is a lethal combination for lightning responsivness....



This is space ship rocket science...
Drones can be driven in 3D mode to, when all the 6axis gyros are off... you know??

I do like rc helis...but i only do scale flight's!

After all that school is over we can pilot like this "alien" brain of Tareq...
+ YouTube Video
ERROR: If you can see this, then YouTube is down or you don't have Flash installed.

-Radio he uses in that video is "Futaba" :P
-Heli is a 700 class. rule is that they have the size refernced on the name (X7) in this case "7" is a 700class....


Also the Blade 200s (from Horizon Hobby) are 200mm blades..
And Blade 230s (from Horizon Hobby) have 230mm blades...
So a 700 rc heli is a 700mm blade heli, like on that video.

That means the RC heli is at least 1,4meter (SIZE) blade to blade heli..., plus the tail and it got more then a human size! .

A so called 450 sized helis is around 350mm blade heli...(marketing is working on that stuff to be as close as possible for description...).

The Blade 360CFX is a 450 sized heli

Ps: My native language is not English but i think i clear it out some doubt's. If got any question fell free to ask. That's what foruns are all about!

Last edited by targetingxmod; 12-26-2016 at 06:25 AM.
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Old 12-26-2016, 10:10 AM
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I wrote this about three years ago
http://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=498430
The basic ideas have not changed but the suggested models for your first CP have changed. Per my previous post, the Blade 230S is now a good choice for a first CP.

I agree fully with Target that you should get a decent radio (TX) and said so in my first post. The reason is because you can tone down rates and add expo to make the controls less sensitive. Then you can turn the controls back up as you become more proficient.

But I disagree with how long it takes to learn. It should not take anywhere near 3 years to learn to hover let alone get to the point of mild 3D. With the newer, self stabilized models you will be hovering nicely in a few tries.

Sims are useful but I have found that they feel unnatural (unless you tweek them a lot) and have no perspective. A lot of times it seems to me that a real model is easier to fly than a Sim. The biggest advantage of a sim is that you can crash with no real damage but nothing beats flying the real thing.
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:22 AM
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I went from cars many years ago to helis and flew/learning for a long time. Then quads came out and I jumped on the bus early. I remember heli guys trying quads and saying they're cool but boring, and they were. They started making major advancement in FCs very fast and then they went from boring to really cool! Fast, fun FPV.
To answer your question, if you go with something like a blade for starters you'd do well. They're safe technology is great for beginners. Very stable, fingers off the sticks hovering. You really need to have your orientations down. When you crash a heli "YOU CRASH A HELI". I think it's better to start off with a collective pitch heli rather than fixed pitch. Otherwise you'll learn fixed pitch, get used to it and then have to learn collective pitch. You need to teach yourself to hit throttle hold if you lose control, otherwise all that head speed on the main blades and head will just rip your heli apart.
Quads are way easier and much more durable and less expensive to repair.
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by rhodesengr View Post
I wrote this about three years ago

The basic ideas have not changed but the suggested models for your first CP have changed. Per my previous post, the Blade 230S is now a good choice for a first CP.

I agree fully with Target that you should get a decent radio (TX) and said so in my first post. The reason is because you can tone down rates and add expo to make the controls less sensitive. Then you can turn the controls back up as you become more proficient.

But I disagree with how long it takes to learn. It should not take anywhere near 3 years to learn to hover let alone get to the point of mild 3D. With the newer, self stabilized models you will be hovering nicely in a few tries.

Sims are useful but I have found that they feel unnatural (unless you tweek them a lot) and have no perspective. A lot of times it seems to me that a real model is easier to fly than a Sim. The biggest advantage of a sim is that you can crash with no real damage but nothing beats flying the real thing.
I agree. When taking off for the first time you need to just do it and get it up in the air. If you're timid about lifting off the prop wash will make it seem more difficult than it really is. Once you're a few feet off the ground it becomes much more stable. My experience with Blade helis is that a CPS model would be a good beginner. A Nano CPS is pretty good. It's a micro (150 size) but it's pretty easy to fly, you can switch between flight modes, it's cheap and takes a crash pretty well.

Never found SIMS good for me. I can fly 3D on a SIM but give me a real heli and I'll stuff it!
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Old 12-28-2016, 12:34 PM
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I can say I tried the heli's last year with no flight experience outside of drones and it was a humbling experience, every flight for the first week ended in new parts. after a month I was so happy a few times I flew 2 or 3 times with out breaking anything. moved up to a 350 size and crashed it everytime I tried it. after the 4th total rebuild it and the other 3 heli's have been setting on my shelf, Im afraid to try again I dont want to work on them anymore lol back to surface n drones for a while.
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Old 12-28-2016, 12:42 PM
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Heli's are much more rewarding do to all the practice they require.
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Old 12-28-2016, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by barbwire44 View Post
moved up to a 350 size and crashed it everytime I tried it. after the 4th total rebuild it and the other 3 heli's have been setting on my shelf, Im afraid to try again I dont want to work on them anymore lol back to surface n drones for a while.
well it all about model choice and TX setup. You may have moved to a 350 way too soon. Another mistake folks make, and I mention this in my Roadmap, is don't fly CP or even FP indoors. You have to go find a nice grassy soccer field sort of place and find a video that shows you how to turn your rates WAY down at first.

The little micros are much more forgiving in general and even more so if you fly over grass.

That thing about getting up a few feet is super true. It is called ground effect. But indoors it is even worse. Any flat surface like a wall, or the ceiling or the fridge in the kitchen will appear to "suck" the model towards it. The effect is real but the wall obviously doesn't attract the heli or quad. The downward column of air crated by the rotors produces a low pressure in the moving air (Bernouli effect). Air can't fill in from the wall side so the pressure towards the middle of the room is higher and pushes the model towards the wall (or floor, or ceiling, or TV or fridge). Outdoors, once off the ground that issue goes away but do you have wind to contend with. Try to learn when the wind is as still as possible. Some models like micro quads or indoor coax helicopter do not have enough power to overcome even the slightest amount of air.

Stick with a stabilized micro like the 230S until you can fly it really well, not just once or twice. Anything with solid CF blades ( like a 360 0r 450) is going to crash with a lot of damage. You can get FBL controllers with Rescue but they take some knowledge and experience to setup so unless you have someone to buddy-box you, stick with the micros until you can really fly them. The experience will be a lot less frustrating.
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Old 01-06-2017, 05:51 PM
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I started out with a mcpx brushed and simulator.. In a week or two I was able to hover around and fly around with out crashing. I then went to a blade 450 with no issues with flying it. Just much larger and intimidating. Ended up buying a brushless mcpx which makes stupid power for its size. I can fly inverted, flips, rolls with out crashing now. It's my go to favorite and crashes cost a few bucks to fix and most of the time doesn't hurt it. All in all around a month of practice with the mcpx. I am no expert but can fly with out crashing pretty much each time out now
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