elan's blog View Details
Posted by elan | May 17, 2016 @ 10:11 AM | 617 Views
This morning I flew three flawless packs on the Blade 500 at the park and ride. The B500 lives :-) Man, well I proved that ship can take a wicked crash. I went in hard and didn't even strip a servo or bend a main or spindle shaft and the thick CF main frame was unscathed. At least the model's excellent construction offset the idiot who was piloting it :-)

For more on the topic: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...27109&page=387
Posted by elan | May 15, 2016 @ 08:02 PM | 1,090 Views
Yup, after 146 excellent flights I lost orientation and put her in the ground good. Have no fear though; I spent the day rebuilding the model. So I'll keep folks posted on the ship's resurrection :-) Here's a link to the crash highlights: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...27109&page=386
Posted by elan | Feb 04, 2016 @ 05:13 PM | 2,551 Views
Well, today I passed the 100 flight mark on this build. I have to say, so far it's been a good run. I've tri-flowed the bearings every dozen flights and I lube the belt before each session. I also like using my old friend , my 72mHz futaba 6exp computer radio. The gimbals are first class and the radio feels great in my hands. And I haven't had a "glitch" in years; I guess that part of the 72mHz band doesn't get used much anymore. Here's to old school :-)
Posted by elan | May 22, 2014 @ 12:22 PM | 4,353 Views
Now why on earth would some one review a discontinued model? Well, because there are probably other frugal (read:cheapskates like me :-) folks out there who would never shell out $800+ on the Blade 500 but would buy it if it was priced less than $400.

I've been wanting to get a 500 size heli, and when I saw how deeply discounted the Blade 500 is, I just had to take the plunge. I was actually looking for a bind and fly, but when I came across a RTF I said what the heck and picked it up instead. And, aside from the stock, crappy lipo charger that died while charging the included lipo, I couldn't be happier with the purchase.

I maidened the model yesterday (see photo below) and she flew like a champ. The model is responsive, powerful and very stable. Bear in mind, this is the Blade 500 3D, the one with the flybar. I could have picked up the 500x (fbl) but didn't want to. I am one of the holdovers that actually prefers flybarred helicopters-a dying breed, to be sure :-)

Anyway, I would highly recommend the model. It was not, however, RTF. If I had tried to fly the model that was shipped to me as is, without going over it, it would have crashed immediatly; the tail rotor hub set-screw was not tight. But no one in their right mind (except maybe a newbie :-) would fly a RTF model without carefully going over it anyway.

As I put more flights on the model I will expand upon this review, so stay tuned...
Posted by elan | Oct 09, 2013 @ 09:09 AM | 4,496 Views
After wrecking my EXI 450 earlier this summer, I wanted to finish an old-school build so it would be good to go this fall and next flying season. I have about 30+/- packs on the new build and I couldn't be happier. The model was built mostly with what I had in the parts box.
-EXI 450SE V2 CF Frame, main gear and tail drive gear;
-CopterX flybarred metal head;
-CopterX tail boom, belt and metal tail;
-EXI landing gear;
-Align skids;
-fusino canopy and stabs;
-TURNIGY 450 H2218 BRUSHLESS MOTOR 3,550KV/RPM, 12 tooth steel pinion;
-Esky 72 mHz rx;
-Dimensions micro antenna;
-CC 35 ESC;
-Dimension Eng. Sport BEC;
-HS65MG cyclic servos;
-Futaba GY401 gyro;
-HS-81 tail servo;
-Rail 326mm Main Blades;
-TX is a Futaba 6EXP: Pitch Curve set to 50, 75,100 (+/-9degrees), Throttle Curve set to a flat 72;
-After a 5 minute flight a 2200mAh pack comes down at about storage voltage.

She flys butter smooth and has a good bit of pop :-)
Posted by elan | Jun 26, 2013 @ 06:06 PM | 4,822 Views
Well, during the recent Preventative Maintenance bearing change-out on my 450SE V2 I decided to install the one piece Tarot tail drive gear/boom block, and a one piece main bearing block(s) that I picked up at cncheli.com All I can say is these items have stiffened-up the model nicely. There are less vibes on the model now, and the model ran, what I would have described as very smoothly before...
Posted by elan | Apr 27, 2013 @ 12:04 PM | 4,888 Views
Some time ago I did a review on the DD tail conversion for the Esky CP2: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1055682

In that review-thread on the DD tail conversion I never got to see how long of a run I could get on the DD motor; the test ended in a crash at flight 253. Well, the results are now in. I got 257 flights on the DD tail motor I installed after that crash. Not too shabby, 255 flights on average :-)
Posted by elan | Apr 18, 2013 @ 09:17 AM | 4,895 Views
You gotta love spring in vermont. One week it's snowing and them bam: Spring. So, I've been getting the outdoor models squared away. I had to replace a main motor on the CP2, and now she's flying fine. The KingV2 needed a tweak to the throttle curve but that's about it and the 450 is due for a routine, 100 flight teardown/bearing changout (the bearings are on order and due to arrive this weekend). I have three new lipos on hand for each model and the weather forcast for this weekend looks good :-)

I have to say, the MSRx I was given as a gift has really helped to keep my flying skills honed over the winter. I didn't feel rusty at all going outside to fly. In years past it would have taken me some time to get back in the groove after not flying as much outside over the winter. But not this year...
Posted by elan | Feb 25, 2013 @ 02:52 PM | 5,217 Views
The mod I made to the model as detailed in the previous blog entry have made it possible for me to spot-land the model nearly as easily as my MSR. I have to say, the MSRx MM mod rules :-)
Posted by elan | Feb 24, 2013 @ 02:05 PM | 5,334 Views
I have flown maybe twenty-five packs on the model, with no crashes after the first pack :-)

It's my first fbl model and at first it was a real handful; harder to fly even than my Walkera 4#3b (and that's saying alot). Then I heard about the Martyn McKinney mod, where you lengthen the aileron swash link 3 full turns and shorten the elevator swash link one full turn. This has made all the difference. Prior to this mod the model would veer HARD left on take-off, it wouldn't piro for a darn, and left hand circuits were nearly impossible. But after this mod the model is a joy to fly. AND this is with the stock tx. The next step is to see how long the motors last :-)
Posted by elan | Jan 15, 2013 @ 02:47 PM | 5,667 Views
I took the afternoon off to put my modded Esky CP2 through it's paces out back. The temp is 36 degrees with a 3mph wind gusting to about 8mph. I flew five packs and man did it feel good. I've swapped out my trusty old mini zoom gyro for a gy401, so I don't have to let the model sit outside; the normal procedure for the min-zoom is to let it sit at the flying field for 15mins to acclimate and then plug it in for five minutes to warm up, then unplug the lipo and plug it back in and fly. It sure is nice to just walk out, set the model and tx down, turn on the tx, plug the model in, count to ten and fly, and then bring the model, tx and me inside to warm up between packs :-) Also, the model, with the gy401, flies better in the wind than it ever has. AND, I can fly with the gyro in HH-I used to fly the telebee in rate.

Boy, I am grateful for all the flybarless set-ups flooding the market; there's now a bunch of used Futaba GY401s for sale and I now have 'em on every model in the fleet :-)
Posted by elan | Jan 14, 2013 @ 09:14 AM | 5,569 Views
My Set-up to date:
-Esky CP2 with mostly stock head except for cnc blade grips which are "flipped" per the blade grip mod;
-stock brushed main motor;
-Blade CP pro2 dd tail;
-Blade CP Pro2 2 in 1 esc unit;
-Futaba r/x
-Used futaba gy401
-850 mAh, 35 c lipos.

Well, I have been flying a CP2 since 2006 or so. In fact, I learned to fly single rotor helis on this model. Despite enlarging my fleet to other models, during the past seven years I have always kept my CP2 good to go and have flown her regularly. I have also made continuos improvements to the mode'ls set-up. I have experimented to see what mods I liked and didn't like. I do believe that the addition of the GY401 to the current set-up is the cherry on top, so to speak.

Running a CP2 with a dd tail and gy401 takes an already friendly flier and transforms the model into something that can be flown a bit more aggressively. To sum it up, the GY401 on this model put a big old smile on my face...
Posted by elan | Oct 20, 2012 @ 08:48 PM | 5,964 Views
The gyro is here and I mounted it today. I intend to hover-test it tomorrow. Based on the results I've achieved from the cheap, used gy401s I've mounted on my EXI 450 and my King V2, I'm feeliing pretty good about the CP2 :-)
Posted by elan | Oct 13, 2012 @ 03:06 PM | 5,604 Views
Okay, I pulled the triger and bought a used GY401 to install on my modded Esky CP2 and it should be here shortly. I want to get the gyro on the model before winter; the telebee mini-zoom I currently have on the CP2 needs a good 15 mins to acclimate and then another five minutes to warm up powered-up. In the winter time here in Vermont, the GY401 not having to sit there and acclimate/warm-up is a big deal :-)

I'll be providing a flight report shortly...

Ps. The new move to 3 axis gyros is sure dumping a lot of cheap 401's on the market...
Posted by elan | Sep 13, 2012 @ 09:52 AM | 6,154 Views
But I'm in probably the best shape, hobby-wise that I have ever been this time of year:
1. After six years I can finally fly half way decently :-)
2. All of my models are dialed in and in good shape (EskyFP2, EskyCP2, Esky KingV2, EXI450)
3. I have learned how to care for lipos properly, and am well stocked in that regard
4. I found a local park and ride that is 5 minutes away where I can really let my 450 rip
5. Eflight is coming out with a nano cp that should make an excellent indoor flier
6. The Vermont foliage season is a wonderful time to fly, so I have that to look forward to. After that it will either be flying off of a heli pad on the snow or inside...
Posted by elan | Jul 05, 2012 @ 10:01 AM | 6,421 Views
Such a pretty bird :-)
Posted by elan | Apr 08, 2010 @ 07:42 PM | 7,446 Views
The head in my BeltCP V2 has developed slop to the point where I needed to rebuild it, so instead I bought an EXI 450 airframe and moved my stuff over. I went with the lightest EXI airframe I could find; the plastic head/aluminum frame job. I'm using an Esky 3800 kv motor with an eleven tooth steel pinion, the Esky digital servos, an HS81 on the tail, a "gyrd" gyro, a cc35 esc, a dimensions sport BEC, a micro antenna and the BeltCP V2 canopy. And I'm running a 25c 1800mAh lipo. My TX is a 6EXP. The blade pitch is +/-9 degrees. From center, the pitch curve is 50, 75, 100 and the throttle curve is 80, 85,100.

As set-up, the model is quite light and has some pop. I have it dialed in good and this evening I sport-flew three, six minute packs out back with a big old smile on my face. Thumbs-up to the EXI450 :-)

If the plastic head ends up developing slop I'll probably install a metal head and take the weight penalty, but for now it tracks great and the model is rock solid...

Edited to add: Okay, I finally installed the metal head and tail that I have had in storage for some time. I flew several packs on the model and it looks very promising. I still need to track the blades and I have new lipos on order. But when those batts come in I'm gonna let her rip at the park and ride :-)
Posted by elan | Mar 13, 2010 @ 12:58 PM | 7,476 Views
I've been flying my mostly stock CP2 for years. I recently replaced the Esky 4 in 1 with an E-flight 2 in 1 for a CP Pro2. For a tx I use a futaba 6EXHP and I added an Esky FM receiver and Telebee mini zoom gyro I had lying around to complete the build. The servos are Esky digitals and the model is powered by TP1320's. After seven packs the results are good...

The full post: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...3#post14584562
Posted by elan | Dec 17, 2009 @ 11:30 PM | 7,853 Views
I've had my 4#3b for a couple of days and have the model dialed-in and flying to my liking. I have one question tho, the model has a pretty abrupt spin-up. Is there a way to soften the start on the 4#3b metal double brushless? I am using the stock tx. The manual, while entertaining to read (with its amusing Chinglish) provides no real insight. On another note, I presume the tx offers no expo adjustment; can someone confirm this?

Ps. The model is a handful, no doubt, but I am getting used to it. And it's nice to be able to fly circuits in my living room when it's too cold to fly my other models outside...
Posted by elan | Oct 15, 2009 @ 02:21 PM | 7,948 Views
Since I live in vermont, if I want to fly in my backyard in the winter, keeping my fingers warm is a concern. I recently tested some flying gloves with finger/thumb cut-outs that really do the trick for me. Here's a link to the thread: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1126488