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Old Jun 23, 2015, 12:42 AM
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Back after 6 year hiatus. Requesting advice please.

Last time I posted was all the way back in 2009. Back then I was flying a collective pitch micro heli, it was a Walkera 4#3B. I had mastered hovering and was starting to dabble in forward flight. I also could hold a nose in hover briefly. I'd like to get back into the hobby but honestly I feel completely overwhelmed not knowing the first thing about the current models and gear. I'm sure I could get back on the bike but I need a recommendation on what to buy. Here's some thoughts on what I would like to achieve:

-$250 or less RTF
-CP
-Excellent availability of replacement parts
-Excellent durability
-Small, but it doesn't have to be tiny. Main rotor diameter under 24"

In my limited research I found the Walkera V120D02S. I know it's 3D capable but couldn't I use this to relearn the basics? I like that it's brushless out of the box and doesn't use a tail motor which use to be a hassle on my helis. It also seems to be very stable due to the 6 axis gyro.

Thank you all, I'm excited to be back but I need a LOT of help. Is what I listed above feasible or should I be thinking differently?
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 02:23 AM
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The V120 is incredibly fragile, for a beginner. It behaves like a 450 and above in that aspect, where one mistake and it'll probably require some repairs. If you can already fly without crashing, yes that heli makes a good micro to practice regular flying on. If you're looking at 3D however, you're better off spending time on the simulator and moving up to a 450 or more later on. Time spent honing your basic flying skills with a micro is time spent well. Try the Super CP, even though it has a tail motor its actually pretty good for learning to fly around on.

Just to be sure, mastery of hovering refers to tail-in only right? Because mastery for me will mean all orientations, inverted, normal, piro-ing - and i haven't even gotten past half of that yet.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 02:31 AM
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The V120 is incredibly fragile, for a beginner. It behaves like a 450 and above in that aspect, where one mistake and it'll probably require some repairs. If you can already fly without crashing, yes that heli makes a good micro to practice regular flying on. If you're looking at 3D however, you're better off spending time on the simulator and moving up to a 450 or more later on. Time spent honing your basic flying skills with a micro is time spent well. Try the Super CP, even though it has a tail motor its actually pretty good for learning to fly around on.

Just to be sure, mastery of hovering refers to tail-in only right? Because mastery for me will mean all orientations, inverted, normal, piro-ing - and i haven't even gotten past half of that yet.
That is correct tail in, but please keep in mind that was 6 years ago. So I am starting from scratch essentially until the skills return.

3D is not a concern any time in the foreseeable future. My focus now is mastery as you defined it without inverted.

Looking at the Super CP I see that it's not brushless, how long does this type of matter last these days? And in reading about the included 7E transmitter the range was said to be short. Is this a concern? Lastly can this heli be flown outdoors?

Thank you
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 04:03 AM
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That is correct tail in, but please keep in mind that was 6 years ago. So I am starting from scratch essentially until the skills return.

3D is not a concern any time in the foreseeable future. My focus now is mastery as you defined it without inverted.

Looking at the Super CP I see that it's not brushless, how long does this type of matter last these days? And in reading about the included 7E transmitter the range was said to be short. Is this a concern? Lastly can this heli be flown outdoors?

Thank you
Its mostly an indoor trainer, it can handle outdoor flights in light winds. I have one upgraded with a brushless main motor, and a 7mm tail coreless tail motor. Flies well enough, though it won't handle inverted well as typical of most micro helis (by well i mean it won't fly like my 700 class). The 7E is good enough for micro helis, it is short range stock - but you'll lose sight of the heli at that kind of distances anyway. Modifying it is most likely illegal in your country but it is possible to extend the range, i've tested mine to go way beyond the distance you can see the v120 (probably over 1km).

If you're starting from scratch, i suggest to stay in a garage and hover the super CP, at least if it flies away it'll go into the ceiling or a wall - better than losing it in the wind. Staying low with it helps alot at the beginning stages, the brushed motor won't give you very high headspeeds so the heli is docile most of the time. When you do upgrade to brushless it'll save you from buying many motors to replaced burnt out ones. I personally went through one motor each week with it (about 20 flights a day), until i bought the brushless and haven't replaced it since.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 07:00 AM
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http://www.realflight.com

Crashes are free.

Repairs are instant.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 09:23 AM
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http://www.realflight.com

Crashes are free.

Repairs are instant.
Hard to argue with logical solutions.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 09:42 AM
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The Phoenix Simulator Flight School thread may answer some of the questions you have. Glad to fly you out the info sheet if you want to get on the roster.

captJac
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 01:06 PM
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http://www.realflight.com

Crashes are free.

Repairs are instant.
Thank you. I will definitely get a sim but I want a heli right away that I can dive into and sort of get back on the bike.

One sim issue I have is that I use a Mac now. 6 years ago I had Phoenix and a PC. I've only found one Mac sim and I'm not sure if it's any good. Guess I could run Windows in Bootcamp but I'm not sure my Mac Mini would have the horsepower. It's an i7 server model from 2012.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 01:59 PM
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more than enough to run bootcamp, and more than enough to run phoenix.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 02:55 PM
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Take a look at neXt:
http://www.rc-aerobatics.eu/cgm-rc-h...mulator_e.html
It runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux, and the download is free if you can live with the 2min time limit after which you have to restart the sim, which takes only seconds. Take a look at the neXt forum on helifreak.

As for a heli, I recommend getting a used mCPX V1 or V2 (yes, they're brushed, but the motor lasts hundreds of flights if you let them cool down for 10 minutes between each 5min flights), and a used DX6i. Each can be found for $60-80 in the classifieds here, and you can use that radio with neXt - all you need then is a $10 USB cable from helidirect or ebay.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 05:02 PM
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The V120D02S is an excellent choice. It flies nothing like a heli with a motor driven tail. The shaft driven tail can reverse pitch while a tail motor can only stop spinning. The tail has a feeling of authority to it. It is an excellent performer outside in a light breeze. I wouldn't fly it indoors unless you have somewhere the size of a gymnasium. I also own a Mini Cp and have had a Super CP. I do not like either one. They are way too skittish and bear no resemblance to a larger CP helicopter like a 450. The V120D02S does. The V120D02S is very stable as far as CP helicopters go. It has a 6G flight controller onboard that works very well.

Fragility: Do the servo saver mod (search on it). It involves only cutting through the servo horns with an x-acto knife so they can slip in a crash instead of stripping the servo. If you do strip a servo, replacement gears are cheap and not too difficult to install once you get the hang of it. The tail drive gears will strip but that is true of any torque tube tail. Get used to it. I think there is a slipper clutch mod (search it) to prevent tail gear stripping, but I have not done it to my V120D02S.

I don't like the Devo 7e but a lot of people do. It only has 2 switches and that is not enough room to grow IMHO. I have a Devo 10 running Deviation firmware. Before buying any Walkera TX, be sure to check if it is a model that Deviation supports. Devo 7e and Devo 10 are supported.

If you end up with a V120D02S and a Deviation-supported radio, I have a model file with beginner settings for the V120D02S that makes it as easy to fly as a FBL CP can get, and I'd be happy to send it to you.

-Florida Heli-
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by docprego View Post
Thank you. I will definitely get a sim but I want a heli right away that I can dive into and sort of get back on the bike.

One sim issue I have is that I use a Mac now. 6 years ago I had Phoenix and a PC. I've only found one Mac sim and I'm not sure if it's any good. Guess I could run Windows in Bootcamp but I'm not sure my Mac Mini would have the horsepower. It's an i7 server model from 2012.
RealFlight 6.5 with Interlink controller, slightly used, was the best $100 I ever spent.

I'm not a Mac user, but here is the info you would need.

If you use Phoenix, don't overlook CaptJac flight school.

-Florida Heli-
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 06:07 PM
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The V120D02S is an excellent choice. It flies nothing like a heli with a motor driven tail. The shaft driven tail can reverse pitch while a tail motor can only stop spinning. The tail has a feeling of authority to it. It is an excellent performer outside in a light breeze. I wouldn't fly it indoors unless you have somewhere the size of a gymnasium. I also own a Mini Cp and have had a Super CP. I do not like either one. They are way too skittish and bear no resemblance to a larger CP helicopter like a 450. The V120D02S does. The V120D02S is very stable as far as CP helicopters go. It has a 6G flight controller onboard that works very well.

Fragility: Do the servo saver mod (search on it). It involves only cutting through the servo horns with an x-acto knife so they can slip in a crash instead of stripping the servo. If you do strip a servo, replacement gears are cheap and not too difficult to install once you get the hang of it. The tail drive gears will strip but that is true of any torque tube tail. Get used to it. I think there is a slipper clutch mod (search it) to prevent tail gear stripping, but I have not done it to my V120D02S.

I don't like the Devo 7e but a lot of people do. It only has 2 switches and that is not enough room to grow IMHO. I have a Devo 10 running Deviation firmware. Before buying any Walkera TX, be sure to check if it is a model that Deviation supports. Devo 7e and Devo 10 are supported.

If you end up with a V120D02S and a Deviation-supported radio, I have a model file with beginner settings for the V120D02S that makes it as easy to fly as a FBL CP can get, and I'd be happy to send it to you.

-Florida Heli-
Thank you very much.

Truth be told I have no 3D aspirations at all. I just want to become very proficient at all aspects of forward flight and hovering in all orientations. With that in mind, do you still consider the V120D02S to be an excellent choice? Who knows maybe one day I'll feel compelled to dabble in 3D and the heli will be up to the task. But for the purpose of starting out (with some previous experience) is it the right choice?

What's your opinion on the durability of it in general besides the mods you mentioned?

Also I am finding several versions of the V120D02S. One is V2, is that the latest and best to go with?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Florida Heli View Post
RealFlight 6.5 with Interlink controller, slightly used, was the best $100 I ever spent.

I'm not a Mac user, but here is the info you would need.

If you use Phoenix, don't overlook CaptJac flight school.

-Florida Heli-
I'll certainly look into RealFlight. I have had one of their sims before, whichever was popular in 2009. I really enjoyed that sim back then, I seem to remember it having certain challenges that I really liked.
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by docprego View Post
Thank you very much.

Truth be told I have no 3D aspirations at all. I just want to become very proficient at all aspects of forward flight and hovering in all orientations. With that in mind, do you still consider the V120D02S to be an excellent choice?
Yes, even more so. It's never going to be an aerobatic beast, but it is capable of doing some nice moves. Alishanmao on YouTube always tests helicopters in a stiff breeze, and it's flying aerobatics OK despite the breeze, so I would say that you have plenty of room to grow if you ever choose to.

6 Axis Gyro Walkera V120D02S Flight on Gusty Windy Day (4 min 45 sec)


Alishanmao does jokingly say that if you crash a lot then consider the Mini CP or Super CP. That is true. They will frequently just bounce, but I hate them because they get blown around like feathers, and it got to the point where I just don't find them useful as trainers. If you want a like-new Mini CP, I'll sell you mine, LOL. I can't recommend it though. If you crash the V120D02S, like any helicopter its size or larger, you have repairs to do. That means main shaft, feathering shaft, main blades, tail drive gears, and maybe some servo gear sets. This is due to high head speed and inertia, not some weakness in the design. Research the slipper clutch for the tail and the servo saver mod. My last crash was into the wooden arm of my couch, with no damage (rare but lucky). It is not a living room heli.

You sound like you may be similar where I started out with the V120D02S. No 3D, trying to just learn to fly a FBL CP without going all the way up in size, price, and danger level to a 450. The V120S is a miniaturized 450, and that is how it behaves. I went from a fixed pitch micro indoors and RealFlight 6.5 to the V120D02S with no trouble at all. After about 6-8 weeks with the V120D02S I got a V450D03 for Christmas and then shortly after that added two Tarot 450's. I don't fly the V120D02S much any more, but I can't bear to part with it either.

There is a large thread devoted to the V120D02S if you want to go ask questions or research it more before making a decision.

Walkera Helicopter Supply out of Washington state is very good for parts, but you pay for being a US supplier. Parts for the V120D02S are not exactly cheap, but neither are 450 parts.

http://walkerahelicoptersupply.com/

There also is the Walkera Master CP. It's bigger but a little more crash-worthy in part due to a motor driven tail. I've never owned one. I do know that Master CP should not be flown with the stock servos and they should be upgraded as soon as you get it out of the box.

Quote:
Originally Posted by docprego View Post
What's your opinion on the durability of it in general besides the mods you mentioned?
It's not much different in durability from any other FBL CP its size or larger. It has high head speed and some mass due to size and a torque tube driven tail, so if you crash, it's going to need repair. It will teach you how to repair a 450 heli since it's built like a 450 heli.

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Also I am finding several versions of the V120D02S. One is V2, is that the latest and best to go with?
The 6-axis version. It's only $125 right now at AMain.

http://www.amain.com/rc-helicopters/...FdcZgQodVIANlQ

Add a Devo 10. AMain has it too. I got my Devo 10 cheap from Banggood, but be prepared for a few weeks waiting for it to arrive. Flash Deviation firmware on it, copy my model.ini for beginners on to it and go fly. With Deviation, the Devo 10 will also fly any Blade helicopter or any other helicopter using DSM2/DSMX. I fly my three 450's and now a quad with it on DSMX. I also flew a Blade 120SR FP on it. It's the only TX I own. I am getting ready to upgrade in the next few months though. As good as it is, there is always something just a tiny bit better, right? Always. You can spend yourself broke really quickly. The V120D02S and a Devo 10 is pretty reasonable in price as far as this hobby goes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by docprego View Post
I'll certainly look into RealFlight. I have had one of their sims before, whichever was popular in 2009. I really enjoyed that sim back then, I seem to remember it having certain challenges that I really liked.
Me too, which is why I stick with it. If you do go with RealFlight, I have trainer helicopters that I can export and email to you. I have mine connected to a 47" TV. Now that's a sim!

EDIT: I always say buy helis in pairs, LOL. That way you don't feel so bad or lose too much stick time after a crash. Fly the backup heli while you fix the other one. I now have two Tarot 450's for just such an occasion.

-Florida Heli-
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Old Jun 23, 2015, 08:13 PM
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Here is the size difference. I find the V120D02S just barely large enough to see outside. Don't forget to look into the Master CP also. I very seriously considered it. It is bigger, just factor upgraded servos into the purchase price.

Good luck and don't hesitate to ask questions here at RCG.

-Florida Heli-
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