Blade CP FAQ - and set-up tips - taken from all of the threads
E-flite “Blade CP” - FAQ
This document includes setup and flying tips.
I have been reading and then documenting all of the best info I can find in the threads on rcgroups.com and runryder.com forums. I have a Blade in transit - and I wanted to have this information handy when it got here. I decided to take the time to format it into a FAQ, correct spelling errors, and then post it - so you guys can take advantage of it also. Hope you like it!
Many of these answers and tips are from Jason Merkle (Product Development Manager at E-flite), and Ron Osinski (Team JR heli pilot). The remainder are from Pilots who are flying the Blade.
Q – Flight time was about 8 minutes on the 650mah pack but we did not allow time for a full charge and it was the first charge on the pack.
A – (Jason at E-flite) In the box stock configuration, flight times around 8-10 minutes are pretty typical on a full charge. The stock set up has proven to be a very good combination of duration, power and stability. Look forward to hearing more of your comments on the stock set up once you get your model in the air!
When you install the Aerobatic Enhancement Kit, which 3S LiPo packs will you be using for power? We've found the 10C+ capable 860-900mAh packs (Like the E-flite and Thunder Power packs recommended in the manual) to provide the best overall balance of weight, power and duration (15+ minutes typically). For aerobatics, these packs combined with the enhancement kit and moving the flybar weights in to the paddle control frame really work very well. Larger packs up to 1320mAh also perform quite well with added duration (20-25+ minutes in some cases), at the expense of a little less maneuverability due to the higher weight (good for flying in windier conditions though!).
Q - I think a 3s lipo at 11.1 volt pack will burn up the brushed motors quick. The tail motor will burn out within 3 flights
A - (Jason at E-flite) Actually, we have not found this to be the case at all. I have demo models with dozens and dozens of flights using the same brushed main and tail motors on both the stock 8 cell NiMh and 3S LiPo packs with no problems at all.
The tail motor is N30 sized which is far better suited for use with 3S LiPo packs than the N20 motors used on other similar models that may burn out in just a few flights. After a 15 minute flight using the 3S LiPo packs and heat sink the tail motor is hardly even warm or above ambient temps. We have not had a tail motor burn out yet with the stock 8 cell NiMh or optional 3S LiPo packs.
As for the main motor, it too has performed very well for many dozens of aerobatic flights using the 3S LiPo packs. As long as you follow the manual's advice of using a motor with 8T pinion when flying 3S LiPo packs on the flat bottom blades or motor with 9T pinion when flying the symmetrical blades, along with the use of the main motor heat sink, you will have very good motor life. We have not had a main motor burn out yet with the stock 8 cell NiMh or optional 3S LiPo packs.
Motor life may vary based on the care and use of each particular model, but when used and cared for properly motor life should indeed be very good if not some the best of any brushed motors in models this size. Some tips for longer main and tail motor life:
- Use the set ups as recommended above and in the manual when using 3S LiPo packs
- Be sure to set the proper gear mesh when installing the new main motors with smaller pinions
- Install the optional main and tail motor heat sinks included with the Aerobatic Enhancement Kit or available separately:
- Allow the motors to cool to ambient temperature between flights and freshly charged packs
- Power down immediately in the event of a crash. Don’t forget if you are in "Idle Up" to flip back to normal mode and lower the throttle stick and throttle trim completely and as quickly as possible.
Q - I already have several of the TP1320 10-12C packs and I picked up one of the new TP900s. I am sure like you said the 900 will be the hot pack for aerobatics but I am hoping the 1320s added weight will be useful for outdoor general flying.
A - (Jason at E-flite) Your TP 1320 packs will work great for general sport and aerobatic flying with excellent duration. The 900 pack will be even better for all out aerobatics while still providing very good duration too.
Q – Maybe you can answer a question for me. I see on the Horizon site the Blade is available as a "replacement airframe" for $99. Is this the whole kit (motors, blades) less all the electronics and servos? I don't need the servos, battery, transmitter, mixer, etc., and am wondering if it's a barebones kit.
A - (Jason at E-flite) "EFLH1101" is the "Blade CP ARF Replacement Airframe," as you can see with a detailed note about half way down the page here:
Q - Picked one up today at the LHS. I have a XRB Lama, and purchased this as a step up. First flight was good; it is much more touchy than my XRB. 2nd flight did not go too well. The tail rotor came off in mid flight, just hovering at about 4 feet. Just swirled in after I saw something come flying off. I found the prop, gear and shaft and 1 bearing. The other bearing the keeper on the prop end of the CF rod are gone. I ran up to the LHS before they closed and they had a bearing I can make work, and I purchased a dubo locking collar which I had to drill out. Not sure if things are working correctly now, as I was having a harder time controlling it after I put my substitute parts in. In fact I broke the main blade, and the support that keeps the tail from hitting the ground, and the landing gear. I was able to control the tail, but could not keep the thing level in the air.
Any one else have a problem with the tail prop coming off? Might want to check yours and make sure it is tight.
A - (Jason at E-flite) Sorry to hear of your problems with the tail. I can honestly say we've never had one come loose in flight unless it was loose before take off - the rubber keeper is a nice, snug fit though it could be worked off the shaft if the tail rotor had impacted the ground at some point. It is however good advice for anyone to check the security of this keeper and the tail rotor before flying.
Yes, the Blade CP will handle quite a bit differently than your XRB Lama as co-axial helis are inherently stable due to the counter-rotating blades. The Blade CP is a much more capable and performance oriented model with more control and maneuverability. With a little practice I’m sure youll have no problems handling the Blade CP and will actually find it to be quite a bit more capable when it comes to forward flight, flying outdoors in the wind, etc than the XRB and quite stable once properly trimmed.
Q - Another note my transmitter has a ratchet on the throttle. I thought heli controllers should not have the ratchet.
A – (Jason at E-flite) Regarding the ratchet on the throttle - some transmitters may have a more "aggressive" ratchet than others. You can of course adjust or remove the ratchet altogether if you prefer. We will also be working to smooth the ratchet on the transmitters in the future.
A - I took a 1/4" piece of small fuel tubing and slipped it over the metal clip on the throttle ratchet. There are only 4 screws to open the back and then loosen the screw holding the clip to be able to slip the fuel tube over it. Then carefully tighten the clip back down. It gives you a very smooth throttle.
Q - I have installed the aerobatic upgrade pack including the motor with the 9t pinion. I ended up having to sand the blade roots a little as they were too tight in the grips and the blades would not straighten out when I spun it up even with the bolts backed way out. My tach batteries are dead so I am not sure of the head speed but the machine is still very stable in a hover.
A - (Jason at E-flite) On installing the symmetrical blades, sometimes the screw holding the plastic root supports to the blade is too tight causing the supports to spread too much at the root end of the blade. If that’s the case, loosen the root support screw a little bit, pinch the support down at the root and install the blades. Once you have the blades installed, snug the root support screw up a little bit. If this still doesn’t work, remove the root support screw altogether and make sure the shoulder of the root support is seated properly in the hole in the blade. When it is seated properly the support should be flush all the way around where it touches the blade (if it does not because the part is flexed you can use a small amount of pressure to flex is back the other way). Make sure both supports are flush and install the root support screw ensuring not to tighten it down too far. I’ve only had problems fitting one set of blades in the past (we've been through a fair number of blades during testing as you would imagine) and these checks/fixes helped cure the tight fit in the blade grip.
Q - Put the high performance blades on. I am now having a problem that the Blade CP will not lift off. If I hold it in my hand it does not seem to be blowing much air downward. If I put it in advanced flight mode while holding the Blade CP in my hand, and apply downward thrust, I can feel lots of resistance, but almost none when the blades should be pushing air down. If I move the stick forward or to the left I do feel more air pushing down when it transforms to forward flight. I put the new blades on with the screw going up like the old flat blades.
A - (Jason at E-flite) The symmetrical blades are not intended for use with 8 cell NiMh packs and the stock motor. While the model has plenty of pitch both top and bottom (-10/+10 as shown in the manual), the head speed will be too low with the stock motor and 8 cell packs to produce the thrust needed for flight with the symmetrical blades. That’s why we sell the Aerobatic Enhancement Kit with symmetrical blades as a whole, intended for use with 3S LiPo packs only. Due to the added voltage of the 3S LiPo packs, the motor produces the right amount of head speed and thrust necessary to fly with the symmetrical blades.
If you would like to keep running the stock main motor and 8 cell NiMh packs, pick up a spare set of flat bottom blades. You might also check out the Crash Kit (EFLH1169) - it has quite a few additional parts you might use in the future for just a few dollars more than a set of flat bottom main blades:
The Crash Kit includes a set of flat bottom main blades, tail rotor blade, skid set and flybar all for under $20.
Q - if the idle up is set to normal and I throttle up with the left throttle stick, How much % of the throttle does it take to hover and what stick input is need to get it to lift off. With the CP I would throttle up to full throttle and it would just sit there and not lift off. As I stated I only have FP experience and that is easy because you just throttle up until it lifts.
A - (Jason at E-flite) If you need more positive pitch to hover at a lower throttle stick setting, simply increase the throttle trim before you lift off. Id start with half trim then work your way toward full trim if you’d like to hover with the throttle stick closer to half (this is in the normal mode - the trim position will also affect the pitch in Idle Up as well with more trim giving more positive pitch and vice versa).
Q - I have a question, can I use the acro upgrade motor and pinion with my TP900mAh li-po's and keep my flat bottomed blades while I learn. My point is that I have 3 TP900mAh li-po's and 1 stock battery.
A - (Jason at E-flite) You can use the 3-Cell LiPo pack with the flat bottom blades as long as you switch to a motor with 8 or 9 tooth pinion. With the 8 tooth, flight times will be very, very long with more power than stock. With the 9 tooth pinion (same as included with the Aerobatic Enhancement Kit) you have gobs of power and still very good duration when using the flat bottom blades.
Don’t forget to read the manual too There's a whole section dedicated to the Lipo upgrades.
Q - Is the Blade CP on 72mhz, I'd like to be able to use my 9303 tx
A - (Jason at E-flite) the Blade CP Tx and Rx are indeed on 72mhz. We did not however test other 72mhz transmitters with this system as we found stock transmitter to be quite capable for all sorts of flying including hovering and aerobatics.
Q - The receiver appears to be neg shift. No joy getting it to work with my JR 9303.
Guess if I want to use my TX I'll have to get the 2-in-1 control unit and
install a receiver and gyro.
A - (Jason at E-flite) You can use your JR transmitter later on by removing the 4-in-1 unit and replacing it with the JR receiver, 2-in-1 control unit and the gyro of your choice (can be a low cost piezo or heading hold if you prefer such as the CSM 200 micro).
Here is a link to the item number and price for the 2-in-1 unit:
(Editors note – Some Futaba owners are planning on using their radios for flying the Blade – as they work in Neg Shift.)
Last edited by bstock; Jun 03, 2005 at 06:43 PM.
Q - From what I have seen the new E flite is the same as the Honey Bee 2 CP
A – (Jason on 5-2-05) While true that the Blade CP is similar to the E-sky heli, it is not the exact same heli. The Blade CP features an improved swashplate that is "tighter" (less slop) that will not pop apart in flight, improved tail rotor blade that wont explode during flight, improved tail motor (N30 vs N20 for better performance and life on 8 cell Ni and 3 cell Li packs), cyclic servos matched for speed (less interaction in the CCPM), better "stock" set up out of the box that actually performs with authority and is better suited for the majority of the pilots who will be flying it, and more. At the same time, the Blade CP is 100% supported in the US by us here at Horizon Hobby - the E-sky is being sold "grey market" into the US by overseas trading companies and is not backed fully by an official US distributor.
A – (Jason on 6-2-05) If you do a quick search here on the forum you will find that the Blade CP/Esky discussion has already been had in detail. I see no reason to continue the discussions here in this thread as it is not relevant to the topics being discussed here. I can say that the models are not equipped with exactly the same components and do not fly exactly the same as you and others suggest. Watching video of the HoneyBee is NOT an accurate representation of how the Blade CP will perform as they are equipped with different components and configured differently. I will continue working to have a video of the stock and enhanced Blade CP posted as soon as possible.
Q - What size are the carbon blades that are coming for it?
A – (Ron Osinski) The E-Flite carbon blades have the same root hole as the Hornet 1 and 2 and other helis in that size. These blades are 225 mm long. The cord is the same width all the way down the blade unlike Hornet 1 blades that taper.
(Jason at E-flite) - The Blade CP is actually a model intended for experienced helicopter pilots. If you notice, no where on the box, in marketing materials or even in the manual do suggest it to be used as first helicopter, or first collective pitch model. Granted, this does not mean the model can not be used to learn the ins and outs of helis or collective pitch heli flying, that was however not the intent. For this reason the manual was written as a guide to this particular helicopter model and its electronics/mechanics - not as a guide to explain anything and everything there is to know about helis or collective pitch helis. Forums like this, hobby shops, flying fields, etc are the best places to gain the knowledge you need to succeed.
(Jason at E-flite) The paddles should not be loose from the factory but can however be knocked loose after an impact. They should be tight, level with one another and level with the paddle control frame before flight.
(Jason at E-flite) - Some notes on the set ups we recommend:
We spent many, many hours testing multiple motor, pinion, cell count, blade type, etc combinations to find the best overall performing set ups. The stock set up works extremely well out of the box and if you intend to continue running the stock motor and 8 cell NiMh packs, use the flat bottom blades only. This set up has more than enough power for hovering, forward flight, good solid climb rates and good duration.
For more experienced pilots interested in aerobatics and inverted flight, we make it easy and offer the Aerobatic Enhancement Kit (EFLH1168) which includes symmetrical main blades, main motor with 9 tooth pinion and main/tail motor heat sinks intended for use with 3S 860-1320mAh packs:
This kit coupled to the 3S LiPo packs provides an excellent balance of power, duration and performance without pushing the main and tail motors too hard. Here is a link to a nice article with lots of great tips on installing the enhancement kit:
Trust me - we have tried many, many other combinations and the stock set up and Aerobatic Enhancement Kit set up are by far the best of the best. There may be other set ups that work, but try them at your own risk. I can say if you stick with the set ups we recommend, you will be rewarded with reliable and consistent performance from your Blade CP.
(Jason at E-flite)
Each model is slightly different, but generally you can find where with the throttle stick centered you are achieving exactly 0 degrees of pitch by using the throttle trim to adjust. For many models you may have both the throttle stick and throttle trim centered to achieve 0 degrees of pitch with equal amounts of positive and negative pitch in Idle Up. If you want more positive pitch than negative (ie - you fly right side up more often than upside down and would like a little more zip in the climb rate), just bring the throttle trim up. If you would like more negative pitch, drop the throttle trim down. If you find even in normal mode that you are hovering with the throttle stick higher than you like, raise the throttle trim.
Of course you can also further fine tune the pitch curve by adjusting the Pitch Control Links (Very little if any adjustments should be required though, so don’t go crazy adjusting these links too much!). Anytime you make pitch adjustments or would like to check blade pitch at various stick/trim locations, don’t forget to unplug the main and tail motors from the 4-in-1 first (noting the plug locations and polarities so that the right motor spins the right way when you’re ready to fly again).
If you are getting more negative pitch and positive in the Idle Up flight mode, simply raise the throttle trim. If you have more positive than you need, lower the throttle trim. If you prefer not to adjust the throttle trim each time you fly, you can also further adjust the pitch curve using the Pitch Control Links - but be careful as making significant adjustments to these links can affect blade tracking and significantly affect the performance of the model. I would suggest going no more than 1-2 turns in either direction for adjustment. Further adjustment should simply not be necessary because each model is test flown at the factory and should be very close to where it needs to be.
(Ron Osinski - Team JR heli pilot)
I flew the Blade CP at the E-TOC this past weekend. It really is a nice heli for the money.
The Aerobatic Enhancement kit is $22.95. You get semi mainrotors that are wooden and a new motor with a 9 tooth pinion on it. The stock heli comes with the same motor but it has a 10 tooth pinion on it. It also has flat bottom mainrotor blades too. The Aerobatic kit is designed to be flown with a 3S 900 MAH LI-PO pack or a 1300 MAH LI-PO pack. I use the Thunder Power 3S 900 MAH pack and this is what I flew it with. You get about 12 to 15 mins of flying with it, depending on how aggressive you fly it. You also get a heat sink for the mainmotor and the t/r motor too with the Aerobatic Enhancement kit. They should be use if you intend on flying with the 3S packs.
My heli at the E-TOC was totally stock, flown with the included E-Flite transmitter and just the $22.95 enhancement kit. I just got the carbon blades at Toledo and did not have any stick time on them so I did not fly them. These blades are E-Flite blades not MS Carbon. They will be $29.95 per set.
Monday night I got the Blade CP out with the E-Flite carbon blades. It made the heli even better! The rpms were up and the flight performance was better too. Keep in mind it will fly with the semi-wooden blades too.
(Ron Osinski - Team JR heli pilot)
Great to see the positive posts on this new heli.
Just a little tid bit to help those not too familiar with micro helis. When you install the Performance Enhancement kit you will more than likely have to make a few adjustments to fine-tune your Blade CP. Don’t worry they are very easy!!!
First when I put the wooden semis on the heli I remove 1 total turn of pitch to the pitch links that go up to the main rotor blades. These links can turn 1/2 for fine-tuning of the tracking and be snapped back on but I find that 1 complete turn inwards or clockwise will remove enough pitch to make it work better. Do 1 turn on each link. This of course takes into account that you have the blades tracking well. <G>
2nd, I find that with the 3S LI-PO that the revo pot on the 4in1 box can be turned counter clockwise about 1/16th of a turn. This is just a taste but if you don't remove a little revo from this adjustment the rudder trim will probably be at full left trim and the heli will still be moving nose right. I use this pot to allow me to keep the rudder trim at center. If I need a little trim depending on the weather conditions I use the trim lever but this is after I have made this electronic adjustment on the 4in1 box first.
3rd, I also find that you can up the gyro gain a little. About the same...1/16th of a turn.
Keep in mind that the gyro pot can be adjusted HOT so you can move the pot with the system on and the new setting will take effect. BUT the revo pot does not. Once you make a pot change you must unplug the receiver from the battery and RE-Boot the system. Then the change you made will take effect.
And when I boot up my system I put the throttle trim at full down as well as the throttle stick. I let all come up and boot up then before I fly I put the throttle trim in the center so the CCPM collective range is centered. You can use this trim lever as an offset but I find that once I have adjusted the pitch, taken 1 turn out as referenced above, this also works very well and very consistently.
I mention all this as my Blade CP operates well with these adjustments. AND last night my buddy Choppermario from Ohio paid me a visit at Camp Ronnie with his shiny new Blade CP too. He had just installed the Performance Enhancement kit and the 3S LI-PO and it was just not right. It lagged a little and the t/r was sort of all over the place. I put it on the bench and did the things I mention above in about 2 mins total. IT WORKED FAMOUSLY and he is now even happier with his purchase than before. He ripped the Blade CP around Camp Ronnie deep into the dusk sky light. It was awesome. He got close to 15 mins total flying time and his LI-PO took back in 700 or so MAH. Until I made those adjustments his blades were tracked, he didn't touch a thing from the factory settings and the heli lagged and it drifted nose right. Now the rudder trim is perfectly centered and the heli will sit in a hover just about hands off with a very nice rpm. No lagging or sagging from too much pitch.
Lastly, keep an eye out for the very next issue or Rotory Magazine for my complete review of this terrific heli.
Jason… I think this would make a great first heli but I have a couple of comments too.
The heli as sold is a nice first heli. Sure, it is not as durable as a FP heli, but it is more controllable being CP. So keep it as is, just add a set of training gear.
The book is informative, but does not show the neutral setup. With this in mind, include a simple one page setup sheet.
The upgrade kit is nice but why not just sell a version of the heli with them and no nimh pack or charger? The book is overkill for this version as anyone buying it for acro or 3D does is far past what the book shows.
I picked up a crash kit on the way home from work from the LHS. Put the flat bottom blades on and took it up to the school. With the trim down I could not get it to lift off the ground, but with the trim all the way up it lifted off no problem. Hovered around a bit, and then landed it. Took off again and did a little more then just hovered. I am still getting used to it being more sensitive than the other birds I have flown. Had a slight mishap on my 2nd landing, and stuck the blade into the grass. The pin the keeps the head from spinning on the shaft broke. I removed the broken part and pushed the pin in to engage the shaft, Had another flight, but the wind was blowing a little, and I was having problems controlling the Blade CP. Not a problem with the Blade, but more pilot error!!!!!!! Switched to lipo with stock motor and it seems to fly much better.
As expected the run time is a little shorter with the symmetrical blades. Even after hovering out a 900mah lipo pack the motor was only 125F on the armature seen thru the cooling slots. The tail motor was 100F on the case. So far I have used the TP900, TP1320, and some older Etec 1200s. The TP packs of course provided the best headspeed. The Etecs did work quite well for basic flying however and came down at only 110F after 9min of flying.
Hovering was pretty much the same. Cyclic is quicker because of the higher headspeed. Forward flight seemed to track better with the symmetrical blades. I may have had the balance better though. I did a couple of rolls and loops with out a problem. I only tried inverted up high and could not hold it but that was more my problem than the heli's. I need to mess with the blade pitch as I have to much top end and if I am not careful I can bog it pretty badly.
Overall I am very impressed with this little bird. It is amazing that you can buy one and charge the pack and fly.
The aerobatic upgrade certainly adds some extra complexity and requires you to make adjustments and work with the model to make it fly its best. Even with that it is still far easier to get it flying than any of the other micros I have flown.
The flybar paddles should be level with the swashplate, flat across from each other.
I picked up a Blade today. 10mins after opening the box I was in the air.
Hover was hands off with the stock blades. I had to turn the mix 1/4 turn after installing the aerobatic blades.
If you’d like to soften the controls, you can add additional weighs to the flybar.
If you would like to quicken the Cyclic control response on the Heli – move the flybar weights in. Some are even suggesting removing them altogether.
I crashed my first helicopter today, right out of the box. the E-Flight Blade CP I’ve been waiting WEEKS for. My own dumb fault, though. I didn't properly secure the bar that holds the canopy down and when I spun it up it wobbled out of control. somehow the main rotor hit the rear rotor and got kinda bent up. it shot the rear rotor off, too, and I lost the tiny plastic grommet that holds it on. Guess I’ll be stopping at the hobby shop on my way home from work tomorrow. hahaha.
WOW Brent! What a fantastic tool for any current or future Blade CP owners. I cant thank you enough for compiling all this info in one place...duplicate questions are popping up in a number of threads and this should help keep those to a minimum.
Now if only some of the other forums (ie - RR) would allow links to be posted to other forums, you could send everyone to the same place if they ask a question thats already been answered.
Thanks again Brent...I know people will appreciate all your effort!
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