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Old Oct 29, 2011, 03:11 PM
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Esky Honey Bee CPX -- A beginner's venture into CCPM

I'm a "plank" pilot that decided to branch out into helis this summer at the urging of a rotorhead friend (and given how much I've spent so far, some friend! ). I dipped my toes with a simple coax, a Hobby King clone of the Blade MCPX2. Absolutely loved it, still flying it.

Alright, so let's go one step up. Got a Solo Pro 328 fixed-pitch heli with my next HK order. Worked for five minutes until I dropped it from 20' up right on the tail, busting the motor. Still in the hangar -- the brand new tail is not working out. But that's another thread altogether... At least I'm not grounded, I'm flying a Bravo SX instead (another fixed-pitch micro-helicopter).

I was having so much fun that I started budgeting for a 450-sized heli for next summer. I was browsing XHeli when I came across a sale: the Honey Bee CPX, by Esky, was almost half-price, down to $109. Even with shipping, that was about the cost of a good micro-heli, so I thought, what the heck, if I'm going to break a CCPM machine, might as well be a cheap one!

I opened this thread to show the CPX to others who might be interested in it, but also to get feedback and advice from other CPX owners (and Honey Bee CP3 owners as well -- from what I understand, they share the same mechanism). I will be learning about proper head set-up and adjustments, and generally getting "into the water" with CCPM heli-flying.

Got the box in the mail last Thursday, so let's open it up and see what's inside. (Next post.)
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 03:35 PM
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The including transmitter is functional but a little bit on the plain side. Forget about adjusting throttle curves, this one has two built-in: 45 degrees for normal operation and "V" shaped for Idle Up operation. That's it.

Sticks feel pretty normal. Ratchet on the left stick (Mode 2), trims are sliders. Two top switches, left one for Idle Up and right one for Trainer mode (no cable included, though). There is no Throttle Hold switch that I can see.

Oh, there are four switches on the front to reverse the servos.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 03:37 PM
CP heli ≠ 3D heli
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Watching closely, looks like E-Sky is not in a habit of including a blade holder with their helis - strange, since it's only a piece of foam. Overall, a good looking heli.

I would like to see how the tail motor is connected to the gyro, if they just plugged the tail directly, it may start spinning as soon as you plug the LiPo, watch your fingers.

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Old Oct 29, 2011, 03:44 PM
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The charger is pretty basic, and has ports for 2s and 3s batteries. Both are charged via the balancing wire, taking care of the cell balance at the same time.

The LiPo is a 3s 1000 mAh, and seems to be the same size as my Turnigy LiPos of the same power. Wires are a bit on the thin side, and the plug is a JST plug. Might change it to Deans to match my other batteries, or just make an adapter. We'll see.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 03:55 PM
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And now the main attraction itself, the Honey Bee CPX helicopter.

I had to block up the tail to make it sit right on its skids, but only because the battery wasn't in place. Once you insert it in, the model balances correctly.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 03:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gedexas View Post
Watching closely, looks like E-Sky is not in a habit of including a blade holder with their helis
Easy enough to make, thankfully.

Quote:
Overall, a good looking heli.
Yes, the fuselage is based on the French Ecureuil ("Squirrel") helicopter.

Quote:
I would like to see how the tail motor is connected to the gyro
Me too. But I need to remove the tail motor to pull off the rear fuselage, and I don't have an Allen key small enough to fit the bolt! A trip to the LHS will be necessary this week... (Too late now, they're closed for the rest of the weekend. )
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 04:13 PM
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Now let's take a look at the tail group. It's a direct-drive brushed motor, not shaft or belt-driven. Not the best, but at that price... At least it has a fairly large heatsink, which should help keep it cool.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 04:14 PM
CP heli ≠ 3D heli
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I looked at the spare parts for the HB-CPX. They have a 3in1 controller with two jr style servo plugs, what looks like a possible motor connection and a couple spare pins, possibly for a tail motor.

I wonder if you could fit an outrunner up front, you could probably fit a 1500 LiPo too.

On a closer look, I bet this is a CP3 with a semi-scale fuselage. The price is certainly the same.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 04:33 PM
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Quote:
They have a 3in1 controller with two jr style servo plugs, what looks like a possible motor connection and a couple spare pins, possibly for a tail motor.
A 3-in-1 would make sense for the price point.

Quote:
I wonder if you could fit an outrunner up front, you could probably fit a 1500 LiPo too.
I'll first try to get it flying stock, then we'll talk mods.

Quote:
On a closer look, I bet this is a CP3 with a semi-scale fuselage. The price is certainly the same.
That's what I read -- it's a CP3 with a fuselage.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 04:40 PM
CP heli ≠ 3D heli
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Have you charged the battery yet? I know the stock charger takes like 5 hours, so I changed all of mine to deans T type, that way it's compatible with my other chargers. I can't wait for you to check blade balance and spin it up, see if it tracks correctly. Maybe you'll take off too?
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 07:08 PM
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Supper's all done, dog walked, back to the pics!

The head assembly is mostly plastic, but that was to be expected. Besides, I've been told that plastic is better for newbies -- it breaks, whereas metal bends, sometimes very subtly... The plastic is a bit greasy, which explains why there's very tiny Styrofoam bits all over it. Don't know if I should wash it or now, and if so, with what. Don't want to remove required lubrication, if any.

The blades are varnished wood, they look okay to my untrained eyes. Should I trust they've been balanced at the factory, or double-check anyway?

Haven't touched the rotor head yet. I know I need to check all bolts and screws, possibly add threadlocker. There are instructions on blade tracking and swashplate leveling in the manual, but I'll check tutorials on YouTube just in case.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Gedexas View Post
Have you charged the battery yet?
Not yet, no. No point, since I want to remove the fuselage before I try anything like spinning it up, and I need to pick up some tools at the LHS first.

Quote:
I know the stock charger takes like 5 hours, so I changed all of mine to deans T type, that way it's compatible with my other chargers.
That's the plan here as well.

Quote:
I can't wait for you to check blade balance and spin it up, see if it tracks correctly. Maybe you'll take off too?
Yeah, that's going to take a couple of weeks yet.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 07:23 PM
CP heli ≠ 3D heli
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The head on this heli does not look like it needs any major adjustments, threadlock is only required for metal-metal conections. When you do track the blades, only adjust the long links connected between swash and mixing arms. If you are really particular, you can track the flybar too.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 07:31 PM
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Let's open up the forward fuselage -- this is how you get access to the battery holder. The nose is held by four plastic pins which fit into rubber insets. The cockpit doesn't have windows because you have to slip your fingers inside to press the parts in place (and also for cooling, I guess).

The LiPo fits easily into the battery tray. There's two ridges molded at the back to prevent the battery from going too far back, but they are pretty shallow. The set includes a velcro band to keep the battery from moving in flight, I just haven't installed it yet.
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