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Apr 11, 2009, 08:25 PM
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Helicopter musings


As I'd pointed out in a previous entry, it's nice to have knowledgeable friends in the hobby.

Heck, it's good to have the hobby for the friends you make.

Case in point:

I joined some flying buddies for breakfast this morning...their treat. Of the three, two are beginners and one is an expert helicopter pilot who, as I'd learn, just did some work with some Align T-Rex 450s for the Alvin and The Chipmunks sequel filming in Los Angeles.

Talk about lucky: He got to keep a couple of the T-Rexes, the high-end JR Spektrum radio, the chargers and a whole slew of brand new li-pos on top of getting paid. He's still on call and may have to go back to LA for the shoot; one of the helis he'll get to keep is still there. It was scanned for CGI modeling and it'll be autographed by the cast and crew when it's no longer needed.

Whoa.

One of those very same helis was in the air today at a quiet, privately owned field available for use by members of the local R/C club. The T-Rex will be wearing a scale fuselage in the movie, but for today, it just had the stock canopy.

I will most assuredly be posting pix when I know he'll be out with the movie fuselage installed.

Of the beginners, one is actually rather famous as an exhibition drag racer and he flies full-scale to boot. He's still learning R/C, but that doesn't stop him from having a blast on a buddy box.

He'd gotten a brand new E-flite 400 from Horizon Hobby for a warranty claim, but he didn't really need it. He already has two others plus one airframe built entirely of spare parts. The fellow with the celebrity T-Rexes is his patient instructor and helicopter setter-upper.

I gotta hand it to him; he's persistent in his pursuit!

In any event, he sold me this brand new heli today at a ridiculously low price, but since I didn't have a wad of cash on me, he said he'd gladly accept payments.

Now that's a pal. He'd even given me the servos out of one of his 400s when he upgraded them with a set from JR some time ago. They have a home in my Blade CP as of a couple of weeks ago and which was utterly transformed. That third S-75 is going away real soon, I can tell you.

Since the batteries in these models come partially charged, our lucky friend with the T-Rexes and I gave the 400 the once-over and put it into a hover.

All I can say is...wow! This is truly like no helicopter I've ever flown and I'll be blogging my progress.

All in all, a good day for R/C flight.
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