Worst luck with my HK500
I'm having the worst luck with my Hobby King HK500. Its second flight; tail bracket that holds the rudder control arm failed and I lost tail control. Luckily I was only hovering and I landed with out any damage. I replace it with an Align part. The third flight, the HK tail blade grips failed and I lost tail control. Again, I was only hovering and didn't suffer any further damage. I replace the entire tail with an Align unit.
I have a few successful flights and then the HK head fails at the point where it's bolted to the main shaft. Keep in mind these failures weren't locktite issues. The bolts were usually still in the hardware, just sheered off.
I've planned on upgrading to FBL so I've reluctant to spring for an expensive Align head. I instead buy a knock off head from off eBay. This head worked great, I even sprung for some nice Align CF blades. Bam, tail failure. A screw in the tail unit stripped out and allowed the tail to loosen up enough to lose rudder control. I wasn't as lucky in the crash this time and hammered it in pretty hard. Broke a couple servo arms, the canopy, stripped the main gear, bent the hell out of the head, flybar and tail boom.
I decided to rebuild. A guy on eBay was selling the remaining parts of his Trex 500 for $65. This had everything and more that I needed. An Align head, and tail boom were all I was really after in that deal. I upgraded the main gear and motor pinion to a slant thread setup and replaced the servo arms. I put back on the cheap fiberglass blades from HK.
It's running great. I've put seven batteries through it. I've checked it over carefully after each flight for any sign of failure, nothing found. 8th flight (on this build) and I the Orange Rx must have failed. I was only in a low hover, so it just had a hard landing resulting in a broken skid, bent flybar and a broken blade.
None the less, I'm still pretty pissed about this thing. I've put so much money into now, that I wish I would have just bought a genuine Trex 500 pro kit. I hoped to have a flying 500 size heli for less than $300. Now I'm at about $700 (including FBL setup).
Over the last month I've bought the spectrum AR7200BX, Align DS510M servos (already have a DS520 on the tail), Microheli FBL head and I just ordered a 70A Align ESC. I'm going to do a complete tear down and switch to flybarless. I've flown a friend's FBL Trex 450 and 550, and it's just so much nicer than a flybar. I'm not going to wait any longer. I hope to have it flying again by the end of this week.
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