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Old Jan 17, 2013, 11:21 AM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
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Tier-One Evo T1

When my S107 was waiting for new PCB, I picked up one of these little Evos from my local hobby store.

I'll try to post some pictures later, but I wanted to share a few impressions (note that this isn't as complete a review as others, but hopefully an acceptable introduction):

Brand: Tier-One (apparently part of Viefly)
Model: Evo T1
Type: 3.5 ch coaxial, IR remote
Features: LED toggle, speed toggle, low voltage cutoff
Battery: 3.7V LiPo (advertised at 180mah)
Length: approx 220mm plus or minus
Flying weight: I'll let you know when I get a scale 'cuz it ain't published online
Price: $35 at LHS, bargained down from $45.

This is obviously an S107 competitor but not a direct clone -- there are some differences worth noting.

- This helicopter has two speed modes, which I need to explore more thoroughly. Having said that, it is considerably quicker to respond to inputs than an S107 and is therefore more challenging to the beginning flyer. A light hand will allow you to execute some nice turns, but the transmitter pots seem pretty sensitive.

- The transmitter does not appear to bond to the S107 or vice-versa.

- It has some pretty whiz-bang LED's on the side flashing red and blue with a white LED in the nose. When the LVC is triggered, these all go into a fast flash mode.

- It appears a tad longer than an S107, but published specs say otherwise. Who cares anyway?

- USB charger is pretty basic, with the light on while charging and then turning off when charging is complete.

- The canopy snaps off and the battery is attached to the PCB via a plug. The battery has a nice mount at the front that holds it in place nicely yet is easy to extract the battery. I haven't yet seen the battery become dislodged in a crash.

- Transmitter feels good in the hands but is nothing special.

- Online parts availability is abysmal. I'm hoping that the store I bought it from (a pretty good hobby store) will stock some parts. If I can't get any parts from the LHS, then I will likely abandon the bird rather than buying a second and use the first for parts. I'm also wondering if the Viefly V789 might have some compatible parts, but it's not got a lot of stuff on the 'net either.

My nine year-old son and I have had lots of fun flying this around the house. Haven't tried it outside and don't think that's a good idea anyway. So far it has proven resilient to your basic beating and banging around the house -- that is until last night when forward control on the transmitter resulted in the tail rotor not responding. When shifted to rear control, the tail rotor responded though sometimes sluggishly.

A little research tells me that the high probability is that the PCB needs to be replaced. I've already done one transplant in an S107g so I don't find this to be daunting even though my soldering skills are at best okay (thanks mostly to one of those magnifier lights and a "helping hand" holding the PCB).

Whenever I pull it apart again, I will experiment with the tail rotor to see if simple power connections allow it to rotate in either direction by reversing the polarity (just a brain-f@rt). It didn't occur to me last night to try that, but then again it was past my bedtime! That will confirm whether or not it is a PCB issue.

In conclusion:

Overall not a bad little coax. Flight characteristics of the Tier-One Evo T1 are more nimble than an S107 forcing a newbie to use a more gentle hand on the controls. Responds well to inputs and battery life is about right for this kind of coax.

Also note that I am a relative beginner myself, so I am sure that there are many important points that I have either missed or am too inexperienced to comment on. Please take it for what it is and I hope that at least some of you find it of use.

The verdict:

A good performing micro coax that is apparently very new to the market (according to the LHS). If the aftermarket parts availability improves I would recommend it heartily as a fraction of a step up from an S107 on the basis of flight characteristics. As parts are not yet readily available, I would recommend "wait-and-see" for now.

Stay tuned -- I hope to post some pictures tonight.
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Old Jan 17, 2013, 06:46 PM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
33 Posts
A quick picture without the canopy showing the battery mount.
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Old Jan 17, 2013, 06:47 PM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
33 Posts
And a quick shot with canopy on.
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 12:52 AM
Against Helicopter Cruelty
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Thanks for the review. Regarding the issues, my guts are telling me that it is the tail motor. Of course the PCB is a suspect. But it is just less likely. The tail motor has moving parts, attracts debris, heats up, etc. So, it is more likely to fail. Check that again and then check motor wires. Anyway, a tail motor is much easier to source than a PCB.
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 06:44 AM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
33 Posts
Thanks for the suggestion, Heli Pad. I will take a closer look at the tail motor. Would this test be valid at all?

- Find the wires for the tail motor
- Using leads from the battery, touch both of the tail motor wires to see if it spins
- Reverse the leads (polarity) to see if it spins the other way

I don't have a bench top power supply, so using some juice from the battery seems to be my best bet.

Thanks again for the input!
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 07:12 AM
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United States, WI, Merrill
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandtb View Post
Thanks for the suggestion, Heli Pad. I will take a closer look at the tail motor. Would this test be valid at all?

- Find the wires for the tail motor
- Using leads from the battery, touch both of the tail motor wires to see if it spins
- Reverse the leads (polarity) to see if it spins the other way

I don't have a bench top power supply, so using some juice from the battery seems to be my best bet.

Thanks again for the input!
Just use a AA or AAA battery. The 1.5 volts should be plenty to get the motor running if it's not damaged/shot. The full 3.7 + volts of your little heli lipo battery might be a little hard on the motor.

John in Merrill
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 11:55 AM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
33 Posts
Applying a little direct current from an AAA battery did cause the tail rotor to spin. It spun in reverse when I changed the polarity. It spun freely in both directions.

I am satisfied for the moment that the tail motor is in okay shape and that it is the PCB that needs replacing.

The disassembly of the Evo is a little more involved than an S107. In the process, I lost one of the plastic spacers that are in the metal frame in my garage. A determined search did not reveal the location of the wayward plastic piece. Aggravating.

If I am able to get a replacement PCB, I'll take pictures of the teardown. Thanks to all for the useful advice.
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Old Feb 01, 2013, 11:37 AM
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Hello fellow Raleighite! I stumbled across this and wanted to mention that I have the V789 and was able to find a replacement main-frame from ujtoys.com. It looks to be the same as the 688, which is also called the JXD-339. They have a lot of parts pictures listed by make and model names. I just had to wade through blindly, but I found what I needed. Actually I found 3 online sources for the part but they were the cheapest. Part came in 3 days, I'll be attempting the repair this weekend.

The local store you mentioned, is that at Triangle Town Center?
I went in there for the first time a couple of weeks ago and was surprised to see a fairly good selection of parts.
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Old Feb 01, 2013, 02:02 PM
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United States, WI, Merrill
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandtb View Post
Applying a little direct current from an AAA battery did cause the tail rotor to spin. It spun in reverse when I changed the polarity. It spun freely in both directions.

I am satisfied for the moment that the tail motor is in okay shape and that it is the PCB that needs replacing.

The disassembly of the Evo is a little more involved than an S107. In the process, I lost one of the plastic spacers that are in the metal frame in my garage. A determined search did not reveal the location of the wayward plastic piece. Aggravating.

If I am able to get a replacement PCB, I'll take pictures of the teardown. Thanks to all for the useful advice.
Most Hardware stores sell some nylon standoff/spacers in the nuts and bolts and other small hardware area. They might be able to be cut or otherwise adjusted to make that goofy spacer.

John in Merrill
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Old Feb 01, 2013, 02:34 PM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
33 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtieJ View Post
Hello fellow Raleighite! I stumbled across this and wanted to mention that I have the V789 and was able to find a replacement main-frame from ujtoys.com. It looks to be the same as the 688, which is also called the JXD-339. They have a lot of parts pictures listed by make and model names. I just had to wade through blindly, but I found what I needed. Actually I found 3 online sources for the part but they were the cheapest. Part came in 3 days, I'll be attempting the repair this weekend.

The local store you mentioned, is that at Triangle Town Center?
I went in there for the first time a couple of weeks ago and was surprised to see a fairly good selection of parts.
Well met, Artie!

Yes, the local store that I speak of is at Triangle Town Center, a mere ten minutes from my home. I need to give Carlos a call to see if he has been able to order the PCB for me. When last we talked he said that there were not yet a lot of parts available for the Evo yet. He was, however, able to get me the PCB for the S107 so that I didn't have to order it.

I've done a lot of looking online for Evo parts and I don't see any "other-branded" helos that are copies. Since Tier-One appears to be part of Viefly, I was hoping that there was a Viefly unit that was a close enough counterpart.

I also stopped at Just Hobbies a few weeks ago over on Glenwood near Duraleigh and got an S107 rotor head and shaft. They have a wider selection of helos than Hi-Tech Hobbies, but I don't get over there often.

Good luck with your repair. I think I have as much fun working on these things as I do flying them. Enjoy!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jgestner View Post
Most Hardware stores sell some nylon standoff/spacers in the nuts and bolts and other small hardware area. They might be able to be cut or otherwise adjusted to make that goofy spacer.

John in Merrill
Thanks, John for the suggestion. I'll have to take a look. It seems to be fine for the moment without the spacer, but I'd rather have it than not.
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Last edited by brandtb; Feb 08, 2013 at 02:49 PM. Reason: Clarity
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Old Feb 08, 2013, 02:48 PM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
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A quick update: Still can't order the PCB and my own research yields nothing. I stopped in on Wednesday night to talk to the LHS owner and since things were quiet he had the idea of checking his salvage bag. Sure enough, he had two Evo's that had been returned and he was parting them out.

We took the PCB from one of them (just $5) and he told that if it didn't work I could come back and try the other. I will try to do the PCB replacement this weekend, time permitting. Will post when I am done.
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Old Feb 09, 2013, 04:58 PM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
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Did the surgery this morning before my son's basketball game. It was a comedy of errors and I almost lost some screws (they say I have a screw loose anyway) but I got it done. I had to use a hotter soldering iron than my Radio Shack 15W special to get the wires off of the old board, but I happened to have one of those pistol-type soldering irons around so I used that and the wires came off much quicker.

Once I had the board in, I realized that I needed to move it so that the IR receiver could go through the bottom frame. Fortunately, I hadn't put a lot back together yet.

After all was said and done I managed to get it all back together and give it a test flight. Sure enough, it worked perfectly. I can go forward again!

Last thing...I could not have gotten it done without my magnifying lamp and a pair of tweezers to do the fine placement of the wires while I soldered. I managed to get around my caffeine jitters. These 47 year-old eyes need as much help as they can get and the magnifier helped me do a much more precise job in placing the wires -- or for that matter, just being able to see the dang thing.

It became clear to me that if I am going to do much soldering work that I have going to have to use a better rig. The 15W wasn't hot enough to get the wires off of the old PCB.

Heli Pad has posted this link: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...790&aff=554116

Guess what's going to be on my birthday list...Thanks for indulging me, folks!
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Old Feb 09, 2013, 06:16 PM
Against Helicopter Cruelty
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Good job for fixing that.

Go get that soldering station while they are still in stock. They have been known to be out of stock for months! That soldering station changed my life (as far as soldering is concerned). So, do yourself a favor. Get yourself an early birthday present, and you will thank me later.
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 08:30 PM
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greetings.
I recently bought the same heli while on vacation in Texas. worked great in the hotel room, but now at home (ontario, canada) the LED's blink when powered on then it quits. no manual in the box...go figure. I checked the battery with a meter and it shows full charge. any suggestions will be greatly appreciated
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 09:50 AM
Minister of the Obvious
United States, NC, Raleigh
Joined Dec 2012
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Check to see if the battery is puffed out. It can show a full charge, but if it is damaged it won't do you much good. I just had a similar problem with my S107. If it's puffed out at all (think squishy -- you'll know it when you see it) then the first thing to do is replace the battery.

If you can get another battery (180mah or something close) and splice it into the plug, you can check the battery theory. If you Google S107 batteries and choose something around 180mah, you should be good to go. You can splice or solder the new battery to the existing plug (careful with those battery leads) after cutting off the existing battery. Cut one lead, insulate it with electrical tape, then cut the other.

If it still doesn't work, then you're possibly looking at a PCB replacement. Unless you can do it yourself, you might be better off getting another helicopter. Because of the lack of parts for this helicopter, I'd recommend an S107 or anything with good parts availability.

As much as I like the flight characteristics of this bird, I find the lack of parts to be most disconcerting. I've got some battery connectors coming in, hopefully I will be able to match them up with the battery connectors with the EVO....then I can make other batteries for it rather than trying to get them from the manufacturer.
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