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Old Nov 01, 2012, 02:39 PM
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The Bahamas
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thoughts on walkera

hello,,
i have been thinking about getting a walkera . either a v400d2 or a something similar.
i talked with people at a local flying club and they told me that walkera is rubbish and cheap for reason and most started laughing. and joking. i asked about 9 men at the elms flying club .i got mostly the same replies on rcd and helifreak as well with people calling them pure rubbish.
can anyone give me any ace and bads on it. is it really so bad.thanks.
harry
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 02:49 PM
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United States, NV, Las Vegas
Joined Aug 2012
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The majority of people that take the heli hobby serious are usually very brand loyal. A guy that loves logos will thumb his nose at walkera. A devoted walkera hobbyist will thumb his nose at E-sky. Very few take an equal amount of pride in all brand names. I will always say it really just depends on how deep down the rabbit hole one wants to go in the heli hobby. Want to go deep ? bypass the blade and walkera stuff and start with align. ( blade micros are an exception ) Just out for a quick fix, here today and gone tomorrow ? walkera is fine. I knew a guy who bought a walkera v500, he was very happy with it and it flew well. Guys out at a field gave him such a hard time over the next year all he bought was top end stuff and ended up with a mikado 800 xxtream. Dude spent like 10k in just one year on bigger and better from what i think was just to appease his so called pals.. Dont be that guy. Your going to get many opinions on your thread, Buckle in.
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 02:57 PM
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Mali, Tombouctou, Timbuktu
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I agree with most of what's said above.

When I only owned Walkera, I thought it was OK, sort of.

When I actually paid out for some Middle of the road stuff though, like Gaui and Mikado, I quickly came to the conclusion that for the most part Walkera is crap.

I still own some, and have had about 12 models over the years, and I would say about 15-20% of it is just OK.

Re' the V400d02; Just don't bother.

It has weak servos, poor brushed motors, weak plastics, and poor quality metals (particularly the swash stabiliser).

It's the pinnacle of crap IMO, and I also have one here.
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 03:08 PM
Need More PURPLE !!
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Harryseed: Kdean has had a very good, on-going v400d2 thread. Browse thru it and you will see that most have done multiple mods to get it to ther satisfaction. IMO v999 is spot on when it comes to the v400d2. Always remember you get what you pay for in this hobby.
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 04:07 PM
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Germantown, WI.
Joined Oct 2007
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Until very recently (the last year or less) Walkera relied mainly on glitz. They made extensive use of pretty colored anodized aluminum. They were always quick to bring new product designs to the market, many quite innovative. The problem was their products were usually not adequately tested, the metal they used was soft, their motors and servos poor quality and their designs overly complex. Some just plain flew like crap. In short, they were attractively priced but not durable or reliable and required extensive upgrades. The V400D02 is one of the last of this product development philosophy.

In the last year, they seem to have undertaken a shift in policy. Their latest designs are more simple and utilize the latest plastics instead of crappy aluminum. They are a lot more durable. The biggest reason for this shift is they no longer make their own products. Manufacturing is now farmed out to one of the companies that specialize in this part of the hobby. Walkera still provides the electronics. The side effect of this shift in policy is the designs are no longer exclusive and other companies are selling them very quickly, albeit with their own electronics.

The result of all this is Walkera now has a very aggressive product development cycle, so products do not remain current very long. They still use poor quality motors and servos. This new philosophy only extends to their micro helis. Their bigger stuff is still unreliable, not durable and now obsolete. In short, there are some attractively priced and performing Walkera micros, but don't expect them to be supported for long, or be worth very much used. You will still need to do motor and servo upgrades.

Just an FYI, to those of you who think I'm just a Walkera hater, I have owned at least 10 Walkera helis in the last 6 years and investigated selling their products on several occasions. I sold the last of my Walkera gear about 4 month ago when I realized the frequent product development cycle was perfectly acceptable Chinese business practice. Some people appreciate new products every few months. I prefer them every 2 or 3 years, longer if possible.
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dejavu*Xion View Post
The majority of people that take the heli hobby serious are usually very brand loyal. A guy that loves logos will thumb his nose at walkera. A devoted walkera hobbyist will thumb his nose at E-sky.
It's like walking into a bar out in a rural farming or ranching area and yelling "who makes a better pickup - ford or chevy?" First they beat the crap outa you, then they beat the crap outa each other.

I think the old walkera stuff was good for the price - cheap. They may not have been the best fliers, but my first one was $80 including a cheap 72mhz radio. It was almost indestuctable (a few plastic parts were weak but easy and cheap to replace), and repairs were pretty cheap. As long as you understood that you got what you paid for, it was ok.

There aren't any $80 walkeras anymore, and I don't think the quality has gone up as fast as the price.

For me the biggest problem is lifespan. In a very short period of time, they either disco the original and release a version 2 with only a few interchangeable parts, or they just disco and replace with a brand new model - either way repair parts vanish. When I first started learning heli, I got that $80 walkera. A friend got a trex 450. When walkera disco'd my first heli, I bought another walkera, for a bit more than $80. My friend kept his 450. Now I'm finding that I can't find parts for my second walkera, and David is still flying that 450.

Last thought would be if you break something at a club field, are your flying buddies more likely to have a spare walkera part or a spare align part?
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 05:15 PM
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United States, AZ, Mesa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harryseed View Post
hello,,
i have been thinking about getting a walkera . either a v400d2 or a something similar.
i talked with people at a local flying club and they told me that walkera is rubbish and cheap for reason and most started laughing. and joking. i asked about 9 men at the elms flying club .i got mostly the same replies on rcd and helifreak as well with people calling them pure rubbish.
can anyone give me any ace and bads on it. is it really so bad.thanks.
harry
I would tell you the same thing but without the condescending attitude... would that make it any more believable for you? Would long and detailed explanations make you more likely to understand? This is a case of the experienced people being right, and we are correct regardless of how difficult it might be to convince others. However, I'll give you the three main issues I see...

1. Crap electronics - parts quit for no reason, and don't work as well as proper parts in the first place - this gives you lower quality operation in general, and a higher chance of failures.
2. Proprietary receivers - almost all Walkera products force you to use their radio, and their radios are fairly low quality, although they have gotten better recently.
3. Constant turnover of the product line - the Walkera you buy today won't exist next month.
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 05:19 PM
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United States, MN, Otsego
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Still a relative noob to helis myself here so I haven't been around long enough to have partaken in the older Walkera models.

I have a Genius CP I bought to be able to practice more and learn in preparation to fly my SR Huey a little better. To me it was the best value in a CP heli with a programmable transmitter available at the time. I've been very happy with the durabilty. So far I can still get parts for it but I can see the supply starting to dwindle. As a small heli to use along the way to getting to a 450 class it was great. Even the Blade is going to wind up being a stepping stone along the road.

Nothing wrong with coming out with new models and innovation, but I can still buy parts for my 1995 RV, even though there have been many new models since then.

I can see where Walkera not only innovates and releases new models but leaves the older models behind parts support wise.

I am hoping that changes as I really like the Genius and if their newer models are a continuation of the durability and value of this one I would not mind moving forward into others with them. I hear the v120D02s is very good as well.

As another poster mentioned though, those who bought one of the earliest Align 450s can still repair and fly their birds many years later.

Jim
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 05:39 PM
Cranky old fart
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Germantown, WI.
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The motor I had in my Genius was the best Walkera micro motor I ever had. The motors in the Ladybird appear to be very good as well, since they got past that design flaw with using the motor pods for landing gear. I suspect they are now out-sourcing motors, too.
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 10:43 PM
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United States, WA, Seattle
Joined Sep 2011
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I have numerous Blade products, one old eSky, and the V400D02 which is my primary flier. I got the V400 at the time because Blade did not make an FBL heli around this size and would only later come out with the 300X.

Is Walkera low quality? I'd have to say yes. The servos on the V400 are criminal and must be changed with metal immediately. This added about $60 to the cost which prior looked attractive. The frame is made of butter and the placement of screws and general design makes working on it more frustrating and irritating than it needs to be at any price point. Yet, it flies quite well and frankly I have found the electronics to be quite good and reliable. It also is quite pretty which is something Blade has not yet figured out for some reason. I do hate the RX and wish I could use my DX6i.

At the time there really was no competition at this price point in a FBL CP heli. There is now and as a result I would never buy one. I will not buy another Walkera after I finally run out of spare parts and this thing gives up the ghost for good. Today there are better options with more easily accessible parts. They filled a needed gap and I appreciated that at the time. Fortunately you've got choices now.
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Old Nov 02, 2012, 06:55 AM
harryseed
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Old Nov 02, 2012, 11:15 AM
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Tucson, Az
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This forum is loaded with Walkrea bashers, just waiting for this type of post. I could care less what you or they have. I fly four Walkrea birds eveyday and have two others I''m not ready for. Genius C/P and V400D02. The V400D02 I bought from X-heli for $114.00 bnf shipped. Servos with metal gears ran $30.00/ Extra main motor/tail motor $18.00. While not perfect not bad with new heli and back up items. I fly for my personel enjoyment and Walkrea has filled this for me. Ladybird is finest Mico-Quad out there. Y-6 is a blast. Super F/P nice bird. V200D01 nice bird. V100D01 older but fine brushless FBL heli. Depends on how deep you want to go. You can learn with Walkrea or go to higher end stuff. If you want Status quo- go there. Walkrea has worked for me and look foward to a Horten in near future as Master C/P. Many,many like Genius C/P Mini C/P V120D02S/V200D01.....> I guess we all don't know Walkrea is not up to RC Snob delite !!.
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Old Nov 02, 2012, 11:20 AM
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Do you have any reason for this opinion other than class warfare? Can you make an honest comparison of the different brands? How many different brands of helicopters have you flown? It's not about gear snobbery - it's about cheap stuff actually costing more than good stuff. Those of us who have tried multiple brands and have experienced the entire quality spectrum know all about that. If you've only tried one quality level, you don't know what you're missing and are not qualified to give a comparative opinion. You can say "I have some Walkeras and they work fine" but you don't have the relevant experience to say "Walkera is better/worse than Brand X"
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Old Nov 02, 2012, 12:24 PM
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Germantown, WI.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dankar04 View Post
This forum is loaded with Walkrea bashers, just waiting for this type of post. I could care less what you or they have.
I don't see any bashing here. The issues pointed out are well known and widely documented. Are we supposed to keep them a secret when asked? Some people find Walkera gives them adequate value for their money, many do not. The number one issue is frequent product churning, which I doubt anyone can refute.
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Old Nov 02, 2012, 01:14 PM
Hong Kong
Joined Jan 2010
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There is a general consensus that the larger Walkera helis should be avoided, especially the V400D02 where there are a huge number of serious issues, Some people have even been injured by it. Although that heli was sold in Hong Kong, the vendors did not carry parts for it because it was only bought by foreign visitors.

Walkera specializes in submicro helis between the size of 100-120 where there are no high quality competitors. In fact, it is responsible for creating this segment of the market in the first place. You have to do a lot of research and be very selective on which model to buy. My vendor, who is one of the local experts on Walkera, currently stock sells 3 models: Mini CP, V120D02S, and Master CP. Of these, the V120D20S is probably the best, with a lineage going back for a few years. It is relatively problem free and has a high user satisfaction rate. Their experience really shows when compared to the huge number of issues reported for the 130X and Solo Pro 180D. The churning issue is not as acute with the 120 series because older models can be easily upgraded to new ones.

A lot of the churning occurred in 2010 when a large number of fly barred helis with 3 axis gyros were introduced followed by FBL helis. All the CPs had a lot of quality problems. Quite often, a single crash led to a chain reaction of electrical and mechanical events that resulted in a nightmare. If you could stop this reaction, you could either give up or buy another one. It seemed that making a goof CP was beyond Walkera at the time. There were also big price increases in 2011 and also the shift to the Devo system with discontinuation of support for the 2801 pro. It was during this period when a lot of the bad feelings towards Walkera arose.

Since then, they hired a big number of engineers, with a few reported poached from other companies. They have not released a very bad product since the Genius CP. This is why those who bought a Walkera product released after that date generally have a good impression of Walkera, whereas those who bought previous models had a very bad impression.
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