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Old Oct 09, 2009, 05:33 PM
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Blade 400 question.

I have a cx2 and I want to move up a step. Should I get a blade 400 or something easier to fly before that?
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Old Oct 09, 2009, 10:23 PM
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I am new to this (2 months flying). I started of with a CX2 and got bored with it. It is a cool Heli and I still have it, but I wanted to be able to fly outside and I knew that at some point I was going to want to get into a larger Heli. Like many people I don't have deep pockets so cost was something I was considering. I was considering a Trex 450, Belt CP2, or Blade 400.

I found a new blade 400 RTF with the DX6i on craiglslist for $300. The decision was made for me at that price!

Out of the box it was very hard to fly and very intimidating to me. It is very sensitive to stick input and I crashed it in my first 15 seconds of hovering.

Someone took the time to help me put the thing back together. The person also set the radio up for me (DX6i). It made a HUGE difference WOW I love this thing. After making some changes to the radio programming it is a new helicopter, easy to control, and not so scary to fly.

Here are some things I like about the Blade 400
#1 I can get parts at my LHS (if I need them NOW)
#2 I could not find a better RTF heli package (for what I paid)
#3 Tons of parts on Ebay (cost less than LHS)
#4 The radio that comes with it is nice (i can use it with my CX2 and MSR)
#5 It's not to hard to work on (once you do it a couple times LOL)
#6 lots of good tips and info online!
#7 Flight time per battery is not to bad
#8 I feel like I won't outgrow the Heli right away

Here are some things that I do not like about it:
#1 Servos gears break way to easy
#2 Landing skids are week
#3 Feather shaft bends easy
#4 Main shaft bends easy

Obviously I am no expert, but I can tell you that I have no regrets about buying it. In fact I purchased another RTF Blade 400 last week off ebay for about $350. I wanted to have an extra one in case of a bad crash.

Here is a list of stuff that I keep on hand and much I have had to replace (often)
main blades (pack of 4 sets of blades for under $20 on Ebay)
skid braces
tail blades
feather shaft
main shaft
main rotor gear
2 servos
couples sets of servo gears

IMHO for the money its a great heli. If you want the radio too it makes it an even better deal!

Almost all the stuff I do not like about it can be upgraded. Until I stop crashing it, I will just keep using the less expensive stock parts off Ebay. I would rather replace a $3 servo gear than Replace a $35 metal servo after a crash.

One more thing. If you decide to buy a blade 400 RTF with the DX6I radio make sure the radio is not effected by the recall or you will have to ship the radio back to spektrum.

Have fun shopping!
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Old Oct 14, 2009, 03:10 PM
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I just purchased a Blade 400 as well (mine is used) and it does seem very touchy indeed. At first It wouldnt even lift off the ground even at over 3/4 throttle, so i went into the transmitter settings and increased the pitch curve from 50% to 75%, now it will start to lift off at around 40% throttle, but seems too responsive, you mentioned you had adjusted the settings, care to explain how and to what values?

P.S. also how is the stock gyro, and would you recommend upgrading it?

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Old Oct 14, 2009, 03:34 PM
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Joined Feb 2007
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If you know an experienced CP heli flyer who is willing to help you with setup and training flights, go for it. It's a worthy RTF package. If you don't, you may want to ease into the CP thing.

I would suggest taking the next step instead of skipping it. Get a fixed-pitch heli to learn the differences between single-rotor and coax flight. You can read about it and watch videos non-stop, but until you have the sticks in your hand and stand 3 feet away from blades spinning over 200 mph, you don't really know. Honey Bee fp V2, falcon 40, mSR...

@ nighthawk0077:

If you're lifting off at 40% throttle, that's too low. Your pitch is too high near mid-stick so you're lifting off at a headspeed that doesn't drive the tail rotor fast enough to push enough wind to overcome the torque of the main blades. Probably not a gyro issue.

Pitch at mid-stick should be 0. Full stick should be between 9 - 10. If you're in normal flight mode (as in NOT stunt mode or idle up) low stick pitch should be around -2 - -4. Throttle curve in normal mode should start at 0 (of course) then give good headspeed at center stick and ramp up to near full speed. Something like 0 40 80 90 100. Lift-off should occur between 60 - 70% throttle. Suggested pitch curve for normal mode: 28 39 50 75 100.

Once you get the headspeed in order, then work on the gyro. If the tail isn't going fast enough, a million $ gyro won't hold it. With adequate headspeed, a 50$ gyro will.
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Old Oct 14, 2009, 04:01 PM
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Check the Blade 400 bible it has a bunch of good stuff.
or a Google search for "Blade 400 DX6i" "beginner settings". You will find a bunch of stuff about throttle curves , pitch, and expo.

Check your Expo/Rate settings on the Dx6i. It helped with the Heli being so "sensitive" to stick input. If you flip the switches on the radio for these, it will switch between 0-1

This is what I have setup on my radio.
Aile 0 80% -20
Elev 0 80% -20
Rud 0 100 +20 (not sure why this is set at +20 but my rdr control is nice)

It hovers pretty good now and I can back off the EXPO as I build up skills.

If you want specific TX setting let me know and I can check my radio for you no prob...

I have the stock gyro on both my Blades and I am happy with at this point. I would not know if the stock gyro "sucks" as bad as many people say it does, but then maybe I have no idea what I am missing. I figure when I get to the point the gyro is an issue and I say "the gyro sucks" I will look at replacing it.

The servos are another issue all together. Cheap as cheap can be! I am probably going to do the servo upgrade first, because I am tired of fixing them every time I fly it.
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Old Oct 14, 2009, 04:54 PM
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shizack has a good point. I am hovering at just a touch over mid stick . I checked my blades with a pitch guide they are about where he said they should be.

My TH curve is 0 -80 in normal mode and I left the TH curve alone in stunt mod. I am flying in Normal mode and not stunt mode.

If I had to fly it the way it came out of the box I probably would have given up the first day. If you get it sorted out and add some EXPO to help with the sensitivity it is a night and day difference.

Good luck and let us know what happens
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Old Oct 14, 2009, 06:28 PM
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Ok thanks for the input, yeah mine will hover just over midstick as well, at 40% it starts getting light. I wish I knew if all this was normal, but I bought my Blade 400 from an RC plane guy that flew it once, crashed it hard, spent $75 in parts, put it back together and never touched it since...lol

I will defintely adjust my transmitter settings geared towards a more forgiving flight, and see what happens. As far as the gyro I currently have no problem with it, just asking if most people go with an upgrade.

Also regarding the servos, since I have a feeling i may break them, would you recommend replacing them with another brand, or keep them stock with metal gears?
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