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Blade 120 SR RTF and BNF by BLADE Review

The new Blade 120 SR fixed pitch helicopter. Does the world really need this new Blade micro helicopter? YES!

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Introduction:

120 SR RTF
120 SR RTF
Rotorspan:12.5 in
Type:Fixed Pitch
Weight:3.75 oz.
Length:12.5 in
Height:5 in
Transmitter:Blade MLP4DSM 4CH on 2.4GHz
Receiver:5-in-1 control board 2.4GHz
Battery:1-cell 3.7V 500mAh LiPo
Motor:180 brushed
ESC:5-in-1 control board
Manufacturer:Blade 120 SR
Available From:Horizon Hobby and fine hobby stores
Price:$179.99

120 SR BNF
120 SR BNF
Rotorspan:12.5 in
Type:Fixed pitch
Weight:3.75 oz.
Length:12.5 in
Height:5 in
Transmitter:JR 11X DSM 2.4GHz 11CH
Receiver:5-in-1 control board 2.4GHz
Battery:-cell 3.7V 500mAh LiPo
Motor:180 brushed
ESC:5-in-1 control board
Manufacturer:Blade 120 SR
Available From:Horizon Hobby and fine Hobby Stores
Price:$149.99

Having enjoyed flying both the Blade mSR and SR I purchased a Blade 120 SR BNF the week she first came out and fell in love with her. While most of my flights have been uneventful and crash free I found I was very comfortable flying the 120 SR in large rooms or outdoors and many times flew her much more aggressively than I have flown my Blade SR. The aggressive flying pushes my comfort/control limits and is improving my flying skills. In so doing I have had some crashes, a few of them pretty spectacular crashes. While thus far I have not broken any parts I have partially disassembled the tail area several times and will talk about that more, later in this review. The Blade 120 SR is a micro size, Fixed Pitch, helicopter that can be flown indoors or outside (in relatively calm conditions). Size-wise she is pretty much in the middle between the smaller Blade mSR and the larger and heavier Blade SR. A newer pilot can fly her outside in calm conditions, I have flown her outside in up to a 7-9 mph breeze and a more experienced pilot can probably fly her in even higher breezes. However, my comfort level at this time is flying her in conditions from calm to 5 mph wind. When the breeze gets above 4 mph she does get pushed about and the more breeze the more need to adjust for the breeze and that includes vertically as well as horizontally. If you have mastered a coaxial helicopter, or can successfully fly a Blade mSR, I think you will really enjoy flying the Blade 120 SR. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Kit Contents

Kit Contents RTF

  • Blade 120 SR helicopter
  • Transmitter BLADE MLP4DSM 4CH on 2.4GHz
  • 4 AA batteries for the transmitter
  • 1-Cell 3.7V 500mAh LiPo flight battery
  • Celectra 1S 3.7V variable rate DC LiPo charger
  • AC to 6VDC 1.5Amp wall power supply
  • Battery to charger connection wire
  • Instruction Manual
  • Screwdriver and a few small spare parts

Kit Contents BNF

  • Blade 120 SR helicopter
  • Transmitter none
  • 1-Cell 3.7V 500mAh LiPo flight battery
  • Celectra 1S 3.7V variable rate DC LiPo charger
  • AC to 6VDC 1.5Amp wall power supply
  • Battery to charger connection wire
  • Instruction Manual
  • Screwdriver and a few spare parts














Assembly

In the RTF version of the 120 SR the only assembly was installing the 4 supplied AA Alkaline batteries into the back of the supplied transmitter.

Binding

Binding the Blade 120 SR RTF

The RTF version of the 120 SR comes with the helicopter and transmitter already bound together as part of the factory test flying procedure. They should still be bound when you purchase them. If there is ever a need to rebind them, just follow the steps as outlined in the instruction manual.

Rebinding the RTF 120 SR and the included Blade MLP4DSM transmitter.

  • Make sure the flight battery is disconnected and the transmitter is off.
  • Plug the flight battery into the 5-in-1 unit.
  • After five seconds the LED on the 5-in-1 unit will begin to flash.
  • With the 5-in-1 unit's LED flashing: Push down on the transmitter's left stick until you hear it click and turn on the transmitter. Then let the stick up and leave in the throttle off position.
  • In 5-10 seconds the receiver should be bound to the transmitter.

Binding the 120 SR BNF Version

The Bind N Fly model requires the pilots to supply their own DSM2 compatible transmitter for binding to the 120 SR helicopter. The Ready to Fly version can be bound to other DSM2 transmitters as well if that is desired.

DSM2 Transmitter's that can be used with the Blade 120 SR Helicopter.

  • Blade MLP4DSM
  • Blade LP5DSM
  • Spektrum DX5e
  • Spektrum DX6i
  • Spektrum DX7
  • Spektrum DX7se
  • Spektrum DX8
  • JR X9303
  • JR X9503
  • JR 11X
  • JR 12X

Additionally, any transmitter equipped with a Spektrum DSM2 transmission module can be used. The Spektrum DX6 is equipped with DSM and is not compatible with the 120 SR's receiver and cannot be used. The instruction manual gives individual instructions on how to bind the helicopter with the different transmitters listed above, and it is easy to do and well covered in the instructions. I used my JR 11X to bind with my Blade 120 SR BNF and later a Blade MLP4DSM transmitter as well. The procedure for Binding the JR 11X was as follows:

Binding the Blade 120 SR with the JR 11X transmitter

  • I made sure the flight battery was disconnected and the transmitter was off.
  • I plugged in the flight battery into the 5-in-1 unit.
  • After five seconds the LED on the 5-in-1 unit began to flash.
  • With the 5-in-1 unit's LED flashing: I pushed down on the transmitter's binding button on the back of the transmitter and turned on the transmitter.
  • After a second I let go of the transmitter's binding button.
  • In 5-10 seconds the receiver was bound to the transmitter.

After the helicopter and the desired transmitter are bound together it is important to always turn on the transmitter first and leave it on for five seconds before connecting the flight battery to the 5-in-1 unit on the helicopter. If you plug the flight battery into the receiver first it enters binding mode, and it will be necessary to rebind the helicopter to the transmitter. Power up the transmitter first and then the helicopter and you are good to fly.

RTF Transmitter Mode 2 and Dual Rate

In North America most of us fly with transmitters in Mode 2: throttle and rudder (turn in place) on the left, collective stick. With forward/backward and side to side flight controlled by the right, cyclic stick. My RTF transmitter arrived set on Mode 2. It is a four channel transmitter with dual rates. Each channel has two trim tab buttons to make minor adjustments to trim the helicopter to neutral hover flight.

With the RTF transmitter there is dual rate available with the transmitter being in high rate whenever it is turned on. By pushing straight down on the right stick while the transmitter is on I can switch to low rate and by doing it again I can switch back to high rate. The red LED on the transmitter glows when in high rate and flashes continuously when in the low rate mode. The low rate is recommended for beginner pilots. In low rate the controls are smoother and there is less movement. Even the throttle curve is lower in low rate. Experienced pilots generally prefer high rate for maximum control authority and somewhat higher speeds and quicker response time. More on this in the flight section of this review.

BNF Transmitter Mode and Dual Rate

My JR 11X mentioned above in the binding section is in Mode 2 so my controls are the same as those just described above with the RTF transmitter. With my JR 11X I have a great deal more programming flexibility. I can program exponential for the controls or have the dual rate available individually by channel or grouped together in a flight program available at the flick of one switch. The capablities and flexibility of programming will obviously depend on the transmitter used. For this review I will limit my discussion to basic programming available with the RTF transmitter. However, I will say even with simple programming I prefer the feel on the gimbals and the control in using my JR 11X.

Stability vs. Over All Pilot Control: The Flybar

While a standard flybar on a helicopter is normally 90 degrees from the main rotor blades, Blade has been setting their flybar at 45 degrees from the main rotor blades on the mSR and now the 120 SR. Blade's set-up, including the 45 degree flybar allows these helicopters to have good stability and helps make them beginner friendly and much easier to hover and control in basic flight than many other similar size helicopters. The trade off for this stability is that when a pilot is flying the 120 SR aggressively the helicopter will try and go to a more stable hover if there is any time between moves and a pendulum effect can start. For the market the 120 SR is aimed at the stability at the slight loss of some pilot control in aggressive flying is understandable and to me is very acceptable.

Adjustable Swash Plate Sensitivity

The Blade ultra micro mSR single-rotor helicopter introduced me to adjustable swash plate sensitivity. With its Specialized Bell-Hiller head design it offered out of the box hovering capability that was stable enough to allow a Beginner pilot to successfully hover the helicopter. While not as easy to hover as the coaxial mCX it was much easier to control than most single rotor helicopters. Once the pilot had learned to control the mSR in flight at the factory setting the pilot could adjust the control links from the short balls to the long balls on the head and the mSR could fly faster and much more responsively. If the pilot was ready for it he could advance his flying skills. If not; he might crash and learn through a slightly more painful process. Blade’s new sub-micro 120 SR is almost double the size of the mSR, but with the same easy flying characteristics right out of the box. It retains the precise yet very controllable flight characteristics of the mSR. In fact the two I have flown have been even easier to initially hover than my mSR as I needed no adjustment with one and minimal with the other in regards to trim for hover on the first flights. I have moved the control links on my 120 SR from the short balls to the long balls and it is like putting her on steroids. I'll share more on this in the Flight Section below but for now let me conclude and say the ability to adjust the links on the swash plate is almost like making the 120 SR two different helicopters. This feature has changed the responsiveness of the mSR and the mCX2 previously. I found the change in responsiveness with the 120 SR to be even greater.

Test Flown

Blade states the Blade 120 SR has been test flown at the factory. I have no reason to doubt that claim and several reasons to accept it. On my friends RTF 120 SR I got the first flight to check it out for him after he purchased it. I found the 120 SR was bound to the MLP4DSM transmitter that came with it. Thus they had obviously been bound together at the factory. Next, when the 120 SR took off she lifted up into a near perfect hover. There was of course some drift as is expected but I made no adjustments to the trim tabs. I was able to fly the helicopter in a controlled circle forwards and backwards, pirouette and land near where I started. Since she was bound and flew perfectly right out of the box, I accept the claim that she was factory test flown.

5-in-1 Control Unit

The 5-in-1 control unit combines in one flat box on one circuit board the 2.4GHz DSM2 receiver, motor ESCs, mixer, gyro and servos. I have not previously seen a Blade 5-in-1 control unit that looked like this so I accept their claim that this is a new unit for the 120 SR. The picture below is from their website as I have had no reason to open the one on my 120 SRs. The receiver has functioned perfectly throughout this review as has the rest of the control unit. I have been very happy with the excellent directional control on the helicopter indicating both the gyro and the electric tail motor are doing their jobs well.

Coreless Electric Tail Motor

All Blade helicopters with a working tail rotor are currently powered by electric motors, "with the exception of the Blade 400 which is belt driven." For a small light micro electric helicopter an electric tail motor makes the most sense. Fortunately, the coreless electric motor used on the 120 SR works very well. Even after a seven minute flight the tail motor is only warm to the touch. The motor responds very well and matches the acceleration and deceleration of the main rotor blades very well. The combination of this tail motor and the 5-in-1 control unit keeps the 120 SR on heading more accurately than either my SR or mSR. They really have a great combination here that work very well together. The tail motor has small electric connectors so should the tail motor need to be replaced no soldering will be necessary.

Indoor/Outdoor

In videos, on the box and on websites I have heard and seen that the 120 SR is small enough to fly indoors but big enough to fly outdoors in the backyard in a light breeze. This is a true statement but I think some discussion is appropriate. I fly my smaller Blade mCX2 coaxial in my family room a lot. I fly my Blade mSR there on occasion and I flew my Blade 120 SR there once. While I can fly the 120 SR in that room in a hover and very slowly around the room, I don't trust my skills to do much more in such a small location. I have flown her several times in the fellowship hall at my church which is a decent size room but still not very large. For real fun I have flown her in a gym and most of my flights have been outdoors at a park using a space the size of about 1/2 a baseball infield and generally under calm conditions or in a breeze under five miles per hour. Above 5 mph a lot more correction for directional changes due to the breeze is necessary. I have flown with gusts up to 9 mph and maintained control but I was admittedly required to adjust for both horizontal and vertical deviation of flight path due to that much breeze. The 120 SR can probably handle more breeze with a more skillful pilot but I'm happy with the handling in the conditions I have flown in. She handles a light breeze much better than the smaller mSR and about the same as my SR does in the conditions I have flown in thus far. Flights need to be a little shorter in a breeze of 5 mph or more as the constant correction for the drifting seems to use up a little more juice than when I am flying in calm conditions.

I would not be very happy to have to fly her in a small room or apartment. I would recommend the mCX2 or the mSR for small space sites. However, in a good size room, especially a 1/2 gym size room or larger or outside she is a blast to fly. In that space the 120 SR really comes into her own and is a lot of fun.

Options

Officially, the only listed options at this time are an optional red canopy and red tail fin (each sold separately). I ordered them from Horizon Hobby as initially the new Blade greenish yellow color didn't really appeal to me. However, I have to admit that it has grown on me as I have flown and enjoyed the Blade 120 SR more and more. I don't think it is so much that I like the new color as I love the copter. The 120 SR I bought is red. The model supplied for this review is the new greenish/yellow color. It is nice to have the option available as color is a personal choice. A clear body for the talented artists would be a nice addition (The "talented artist" portion of that excludes me.).

Flying

Basics

This is a four channel helicopter and can be flown with a simple four channel transmitter like the one that comes with the RTF version. With Mode 2 the throttle and rudder control are on the left stick and the forward/backward and side to side control is on the right stick. The specialized Bell-Hiller head design with the flybar positioned 45 degrees from the main rotor blades gives a very stable flying platform so that hovering was easy right of the box with no adjustment necessary on the transmitter adjustment tabs. With small stick movements on the right stick I easily flew forward, backward and to both sides. Adding in the left stick rudder function I could pirouette in place to either side and using both sticks I could fly in a circle while keeping the nose pointed where I wanted.

I started to feel very comfortable with my small movement flights so I increased the stick movement and started to fly faster and used more and more of the room. The adrenaline did kick in with the increase of speed but I felt comfortable enough to keep it up and didn't back off. Finally, I got too close to a wall and as I turned away using rudder the tail hit the wall and it was copter down, hard and fast. I immediately killed the throttle and it was off before the 120 SR hit the carpeting. On this crash the tail rotor came off along with the little bearing that rests between the tail rotor and the tail motor. I was able to find the part on the carpet (more on it below) and it and the tail rotor were back on in seconds and I was back in the air. I flew the 120 SR under control for the rest of that session.

Taking Off and Landing

As mentioned above the 120 SR took off and went into a very controlled hover with no adjustment necessary of the trim tabs. I just powered up and climbed to three feet off of the ground to get out of any ground effect and then corrected for drift as necessary. Drift correction is necessary. The helicopter doesn't fly itself. Keeping my stick movements small I had very controlled flight. Landing was very easy from a hover with a simple vertical descent with reduced throttle. Allowing her to drift I found her performance was as one would expect in comparison to the mSR and the SR. She drifted further away from center in a few seconds without correction than would the mSR and just a little less than my SR drifts if not corrected in the same time.

Aerobatics/Special Flight Performance

Fixed pitch helicopters aren't known for their aerobatics and the 120 SR is no exception. That said, she is a responsive helicopter with a good range of speed and responsiveness that can be made even greater by moving the links from the inner ball links to the outer ball links on the swash plate. I have flown with both settings and I am back on the inner balls for now as I am more comfortable with the standard responsiveness they supply. Even so I have pushed myself further with the 120 SR in a short time than with my SR in hours of flying. Probably because it is smaller and lighter and thus far because even with crashes I have not yet broken any parts and I hate buying parts. I am definitely enjoying the ability to fly the 120 SR outside in slight breezes that the mSR couldn't handle nearly so well.

In forward flight I notice that all three of these helicopters have to get a little additional throttle to maintain altitude. I noticed it while flying some fast circles with the 120 SR and having to correct throttle a bit to maintain level flight doing fast circles. My friend said this was necessary as a slight trade off for the stability of the head design that makes hovering so easy. I accepted his word on that and it is from my opinion a very minor trade off for the basic stability of the 120 SR.

Kamikaze Dragonflies

I have had dragonflys show interest in previous helicopters in the past but nothing like what I experienced with my 120 SR in two flights on Sunday, September 26. During a short flight of only a couple of minutes in Modesto CA that morning I had three dragonflies fly directly up and into the rotor blades of the helicopter. The weather was sunny and in the low 90s. That afternoon back in Stockton I went to the local park and there were dozens and dozens of dragonflies flying across the park in a general north to south direction. During a flight of a little more than two minutes, a dozen dragonflies headed for my 120 SR. They went at it like heat seeking missiles with no hesitation to get to it as quickly as they could. I don't know why they were so attracted on that warm sunny day but they definitely were interested in the 120 SR. I was flying with the standard yellow/green canopy. Despite multiple strikes to the Rotors and the helicopter there was no damage at all to my helicopter. The same could not be said about the dragonflies.

Crashes and Modifications

I described my first crash above and it is far from my only crash. I am crashing the 120 SR more than I have ever crashed my mSR or my SR and I am delighted about it! I am able to fly the 120 SR outside and I have been able to fly her fairly fast because I feel comfortable with her. Even with a few missed turns and over corrections for too much angled flight I feel myself becoming a better pilot. Now I am not crashing on purpose and I have avoided a lot more crashes than I have experienced by making proper correction but I am COMFORTABLE challenging myself with the 120 SR. Other crashes have knocked off the tail rotor again, partially dislodged the tail motor and knocked off the tail fin. If the main rotors didn't pivot I would have broken several sets of blades. So far I am still on original equipment and everything has snapped back in place. I have bought a couple pairs of replacement main blades and several "Tail motor protective sleeves." The official name for the part I called a bearing between the tail rotor and tail motor. Its name describes its function. My solution to possibly losing my tail motor protective sleeve was to buy extra ones as part number: BLH3125. I have used one spare part during this review.

Studying my 120 SR I noticed that the frame was flexible and the landing gear was both strong and flexible. I also noticed that the left landing skid's back securing pin was right under a servo gear and it was possible they might touch in a hard landing/crash. To reduce the chance of having that happen I pulled out that landing skid and trimmed the top of the pin off. In the process I discovered there was a metal pin inside the plastic. I only needed to trim the top of the left rear pin. I snipped off the top with a pair of wire cutters. This was strictly a preventive measure on my part. It was quick and easy with no harm to the 120 SR if it wasn't necessary. (Be sure to pull the skid out of the helicopter before trimming off the top of the pin.) I have done this modification now to two 120 SRs. One the skid stayed in place afterward just fine. In the other a tiny drop of glue has secured it in place but it can still be pulled out if I break the landing skid and need to replace it.

I have since learned that I was not the first to discover these situations and as for the protective sleeve other E-Zone members came up with better solutions than just buying more of them as I did. They came up with ways to retain the sleeve in case of a crash. For more information on these tips and other tips as well, check out this thread started by Ridgewalker with contributions by various E-Zone members: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1293580 I'm going to have to get a set of those small hand drills for the thread retainer modification discussed.

Is This For a Beginner?

NO! The Blade 120 SR could possibly be flown by a beginner if they have great self-control and could limit their stick movements while they learned how to control a helicopter but she is simply too responsive for me to recommend her for a beginner. I believe that it is best for a beginner to learn on a coaxial helicopter and master the basic directional controls with a coaxial helicopter until they become second nature to the pilot. I do believe the 120 SR could be a good second helicopter after the basic flight controls have been mastered. My preferred course would be to start with the mCX2, advance to the mSR and then move on to the 120 SR if the pilot's budget will allow.

Flight Video/Photo Gallery

















Downloads

Conclusion

I bought this helicopter and started flying her quite a bit before I ever knew I was going to be asked to review her. The reason I bought the 120 SR was to have a small helicopter that could handle a little breeze better than my mSR and some other Ultra Micro helicopters I have. I found she did that very nicely. I quickly found I could fly her in a very tame manner and be safe all flight or I could try and fly more aggressively and faster in a large space and challenge my skills and abilities. Since I wasn't doing a review I didn't have to think about keeping her pretty for pictures and video. I just flew her and sometimes crashed her. In just a few flights I found I was very comfortable flying her even when flying her more aggressively then my piloting skills would normally allow me to feel comfortable doing. I simply wasn't afraid of crashing her. Not a big deal to many pilots but HUGE to me. I cared what happened to the 120 SR but I didn't worry about it or let concern about crashing control how I flew her (Beyond safety concerns for myself and others.).

She hovers right out of the box and for the pilot who has mastered the mCX or mCX2 they should be able to fly her right out of the box. The key to initial success for transitioning pilots is keeping stick movements small. Slowly increase the stick movements as flying space and comfort allow. Don't rush it! This is a helicopter that a pilot's skills can grow with yet isn't difficult to control at the beginning as long as the stick movements are kept small. For newer pilots use low rates. They make her less responsive and that gives the pilot less to have to correct. For more experienced pilots most should find her fun to fly right out of the box.

While I have no doubt that my flying her aggressively will lead to more crashes and some broken parts at some point. I also believe it is improving my helicopter flying skills. I still dislike crashes and don't recommend flying crazy. I do recommend challenging oneself and I feel comfortable doing that with the 120 SR much as I did with the mSR. This is also making me more comfortable with my SR and I have started to fly her a bit more aggressively as well (But so far only a small bit more aggressively.)

Pluses

  • Nice size helicopter
  • Can handle a little breeze outside
  • Has crashed without breaking (No guarantee)
  • Easy to hover
  • Can challenge advance beginner/intermediate skills and help the pilot improve
  • The standard body is very visible and easy to track
  • The optional red body looks great

Minuses

  • Very easy to lose the Tail Motor Protective Sleeve
  • Left rear landing skid securing pin sticks up near a servo gear
  • The tail motor protective sleeve can come off very easy in a crash and is very small

My thanks to Dick Andersen for his camera work and help during flights for this review. My thanks to our editor Angela and to Blade for supplying a Blade 120 SR for this review.

Last edited by Angela H; Oct 25, 2010 at 09:31 AM..

Discussion

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Old Oct 20, 2010, 12:49 PM
Registered User
Chicago Northwest subs
Joined Jan 2007
2,240 Posts
Nice review, Mike, and spot-on, I might add. I bought a Blade SR as a step up from my mSR, and found it to be a real handfull. The cost of parts ate me alive. So far, the 120 has been a blast. It quickly builds confidence. I sometimes fly in a conference room, and the agility allows pretty impressive speed, even with the low ceiling. It seems to have less of a tendency to slow itself down as forward speed builds than the mSR. It's good to know it can take a few hits. I've yet to smack anything hard, but it's only a matter of time!
MR2
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 12:55 PM
Did you check the FAQ already?
SoloProFan's Avatar
The Netherlands
Joined Jul 2010
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Good review, gives a great impression, and very much into detail. One thing, on the minuses you mention twice that the protective sleeve of the tail motor can come off and gets lost easily.

Btw, did you also check how she flies with the stock TX or just with the JR 11? And how long does it take for the battery to charge?
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 01:05 PM
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sv1000s's Avatar
Spokane
Joined Jan 2009
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The SR has a 90 degree flybar, not 45.

You might want to fix that error in your article so newbies don't jump right into the SR thinking it has the stability of the 45 degree flybar.
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 01:08 PM
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Matt Gunn's Avatar
United States, OH, Parma
Joined Jul 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sv1000s View Post
The SR has a 90 degree flybar, not 45.

You might want to fix that error in your article so newbies don't jump right into the SR thinking it has the stability of the 45 degree flybar.
it is indeed 45 degrees to the main blades, not 90.

oops, I though you were referring to the 120. srry
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Last edited by Matt Gunn; Oct 20, 2010 at 01:34 PM.
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 01:18 PM
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Correction: The mSR and the 120 SR have the flybar set at 45 degrees. The larger SR has it set at the more traditional 90 degree setting. I will try and have the main article corrected on that point. My apology. Mike Heer
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 01:34 PM
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Michael Heer's Avatar
Stockton, Ca. USA
Joined Apr 2001
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I have flown the 120 SR for large amounts of time with both the RTF transmitter and my JR 11X. Both do a very good job of controlling the helicopter. I like the feel and it feels like I have just a little more precision with the 11X. The videos were all shot using the RTF transmitter.

I have flown the 120 SR without the Sleeve that is to protect the tail motor as I have now lost one of the sleeves in an outdoor crash. The 120 SR flew fine without it and I have since replaced it. The forum site I referenced gives a couple ways to help keep the protective sleeves in place on the helicopter that are worth checking out. Mike H
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 01:51 PM
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Chicago Northwest subs
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Mike- While you're editing the review, you might change your statement that all Blade helis with a working tail rotor have motors. The Blade 400 has a belt driven tail
.
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Old Oct 22, 2010, 11:38 AM
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Stockton, Ca. USA
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Once an article is up live we authors have no access to make edits or corrections directly. I have submitted a request for corrections to our editor for my two mistakes. Neither mistake deals directly with the 120 SR but I deeply regret those mistakes. The only Blade I don't have and have never flown is the Blade 400 3D and I intended to check on how its tail rotor is powered before I submitted this review and I simply forgot to do so. The 400's tail rotor is indeed powered from the main motor by a belt drive. On my other mistake concerning the flybar I have no excuse. I had all three helicopters out and had just flown them. In flying them indoors in calm conditions I noted how similar the mSR and the 120 SR handled and noted the 45 degree flybar on both of them. As stated above that helps with their stability and as a very small offset requires a little adjustment of slightly increased throttle to maintain altitude in fast forward flight over a helicopter with a flybar set at 90 degrees. Most new pilots won't even notice this minor difference but experienced RC helicopter pilots do. I didn't intend to include the SR but I certainly did and in multiple proof readings failed to catch my mistake. I have read through the article several times today and found no other errors in what I intended to say. My sincere thanks to Minirips 2 for catching my mistakes. It is never my intent to misrepresent. Michael Heer
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Old Oct 22, 2010, 02:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Heer View Post
Correction: The mSR and the 120 SR have the flybar set at 45 degrees. The larger SR has it set at the more traditional 90 degree setting. I will try and have the main article corrected on that point. My apology. Mike Heer
The MSR and 120SR have a head that's offset 45° from the swashplate, the flybar is still at 90°. There's a considerable difference in gyroscopic precession and phasing between a 45° head and 45° flybar.
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Old Oct 22, 2010, 03:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Balr14 View Post
The MSR and 120SR have a head that's offset 45° from the swashplate, the flybar is still at 90°. There's a considerable difference in gyroscopic precession and phasing between a 45° head and 45° flybar.
The angle between flybar (with paddles) and blades is actually 45 degrees. At 90 degrees it would not have the self correcting ability both helis demonstrate. A 90 degree flybar design will keep going where the pilot instructed it, until counter measures are taken. The MSR and 120 SR will come to a full stop as soon as you release the sticks.

You are correct about the angle between swash and head being 45 degrees, but the angle between servo and swash is also 45 degrees. So the heli needs no mixing to let the elevator servo make the heli move forward.
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Old Oct 25, 2010, 11:57 AM
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Our editor has made the corrections I requested. I'm posting this in case anyone gets confused by a few of the posts here. There were two errors that have since been corrected in the main article. Mike H
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Old Oct 27, 2010, 10:58 PM
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Hi Mike,

I already have MSR RTF. Can I blind the 120 SR with MSR TX if I buy 120 SR BNF ?

James
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Old Oct 28, 2010, 12:31 AM
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Michael Heer's Avatar
Stockton, Ca. USA
Joined Apr 2001
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Yes! Just plug in the battery on the helicopter first and push down the left stick as you turn on the transmitter and you can go back and forth between the helicopters with the one transmitter. Mike H
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Old Oct 28, 2010, 10:34 AM
Off we go.............
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Seattle, WA. USA
Joined Jan 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesBandid View Post
Hi Mike,

I already have MSR RTF. Can I blind the 120 SR with MSR TX if I buy 120 SR BNF ?

James
Yes you can, however these stock radios dont have any model memory and then when goin back to flying the mSR your trims wont be where they were and you have to re-trim all over again. You see where thats going.
In the end your better off buying it RTF that way there's no re-trimming to do each time you fly a different model bound to the same stock radio.
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