Is the ECO8 really that bad?? - RC Groups
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Jun 10, 2002, 05:46 PM
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Is the ECO8 really that bad??

I know there are loads of other threads about the ECO8, but none specifically about this problem.

I've been thinking of buying an ECO8, but I've read several mixed reviews on the net. Some say it's great for beginners, some say it's rubbish. The most in depth review I've found is here ->

He lists loads of faults.... surely the design can't be that bad??

The package I've been offered is slightly different to the review:

9.6volt 8cell SC2100mAH NiCAD
SpeedEX delta peak charger
GWS PG-03 Pico Piezo Gyro
GWS 8ch 35MHz FM micro RX
IKARUS Sport Motor (apparently it's ball raced, but that review says it's not and packed up after a few flying sessions)
IKARUS Heli 4000 speed controller
SuperTec NARO MAX/BB servos.

all for £399 plus cost of a TX.

Does that package sound good? I was almost 100% confident in buying my first heli until I read that review, with the talk of parts not fitting properly, wires too short, holes not allowing to gears to mesh properly etc.....
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Jun 10, 2002, 06:09 PM
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First, that review was of a package deal assembled my a hobbie store, not Ikarus.

The Eco 8 is a good helicopter, but it does have its faults just like any helicopter due to productioin cost. That is why it cost less than $200 USD stock

And personally to me, that package deal is not too good.

It will cost more but this is a list of electronics I would suggest to you:

*10 cell 2400 mah battery pack
*3x Hitec HS 85(cyclic)
*1x Hitec HS 81 for the tail
*Kontronik Smile 40-6-18
*Mega 22/20/3
*Futaba GY240 gyro
*Any good charger(i like the Schulze isl 330d)
*Any good reciever(I like the JR PCM recievers--mine is a 910xz)

For the heli its self I would recommend the following upgrades:

*Aluminum Swash
*Auto Gear
*Tail servo mount
*Hardened shafts(when you bend yours)

Jun 10, 2002, 06:23 PM
Registered User
I had a ECO8, and i can't recommend it for a beginner. When i got mine, i was allready doing some 3D with my gasers, so I was not a beginner. When it comes to electric, i flew both Hornet and Corona 120. So i had some idea of what to expect from a electric heli.

My ECO8 was first equiped with the Ikarus Performance motor, and a 10T pinion on 10 cells (Sanyo 2400mAh). I had to fight off some heat problems until the motor died totally. Then i got the Mega 22.20.4 and a 16T pinion, witch worked better.The quality of the kit was VERY poor, i am suprised that pepole acctualy says it fly that good, I mean there is alot of things making the ECO8 vibrate. One of these things are for example that the holes in the pulleys are not centerd. This makes up for alot of vibrations. Then there is the linkage which i think is the worst i have ever seen on a heli!

Well, i spent over 1200$ before i could get it fly the way heli´s are supposed to, vibration free... And then the glitches from the CF frame and tail came along...

It is a cheap kit, but you need upgrades right away, like the alu swash, free wheel, tail support and so on. And it is still very fragile. The masts bends very easy, so hardend ones are almost a must, these are not exactly free iether... The skids brake very easly aswell...

No, i would not recommend this heli to a beginner, go for a LMH Corona 120 instead. You will have plenty of fun with it. And you dont need to worry about crashing it, mostly it takes even quite hard craches without anything braking. Then when you can handle the Corona, go for a Logo 10 or simillar. I guess new models will be out before you outgrow your Corona, like the new robbe EOLO22.
Last edited by Tom Viper; Jun 10, 2002 at 06:28 PM.
Jun 10, 2002, 07:23 PM
Registered User

Did you ever get yours to fly? I know what you are talking about with the off center pullies, but my heli doesnt seem to have any shakes even in agressive manuvers. I think it has more to do with main blade balance. I fixed all my vibe problems with a 1 inch piece of tape on an MS blade.

I wont speak about anyone elses Eco 8, but mine is trimmed out well and the balance is dead on. It took a while to get it where it is now, but once there it is perfect and doesnt need any adjustments. My skids are tough as heck(Ikarus Extra Wide Gear) and have taken the abuse of many autos. Maybe I just have good luck with it.

The Eco 8 is not a beginners heli, but some have had sucess for example me I can honestly say I have never really had a problem with mine because I did my home work and learned this heli really well.

If you want something stronger and a lot of fun try an LMH Corona like Tom suggested. Heck I even have an ELMH commint to me very soon;it should be here this week(maybe tomorrow).

Jun 10, 2002, 09:03 PM
Registered User
Personally, I love my Eco 8 in terms of performance and duration. I would not recommend it for a beginner. It is fragile and expensive to repair. My friend just sold his eco 8 to buy a corona for these reasons. He is still in the hover...slow circle stage. He totaled his first eco 8 , bought a new kit, tipped over on landing (on a carpet mat). With a mega 4 and 10 2400 cells on a 16 tooth pinion I find mine great for cruisning and hovering with 9 minute flights. I made a custom canopy for motor cooling and run a regulator. I have yet to try the mega 3 brushless which I also have. The bottom line is mine runs vibration free, solid and stable hover and really grooves well in forward flight with no bad pitch up tendencies. I just don't recommend it for a beginner.
Jun 10, 2002, 09:20 PM
DLG Addict
I'll have to agree with Carlo. I can't say anything bad aobut this heil. The ECO8 was my first heli ever (and only heli). I'll have to say it took me a while to get the "shakes" out, but I think that had a little to do with being new to this hobby. I really like the fact that I can hover and fly around for about 10 mins. I did however upgrade just about everything.

The ECO isn't wreck friendly, but I wouldn't think that any heli is wreck friendly.

Here is my simple analysis:

Lighter=longer flight time=squirrelly=less wreck friendly

Heavyer=less flight time=less squirrelly=more wreck friendly(??)

It just depends on what you want.

If in doubt....just buy both

Jun 10, 2002, 11:20 PM
Registered User

It' all trade-offs!

I'd say it's just a matter of tradeoffs in the mid-sized electric heli world...

The EP Concept is a steady heli, but an older design with limited performance (it's heavy for it's size), but because it comes as an ARF, it's a pretty successful flier. You really need to upgrade it to get good performance (blades, motor, battery, a good gyro, light RC eq) and then it's pretty pricey... and it boom-strikes if you look at it cross-eyed. Still, the basic version is very sturdy (except for the blade and boom. The see-saw head version offers more precision, but adds fragile feathering shafts.

The JR Voyager is a finely built piece that starts out as a higher-quality machine (and higher-priced) out of the box, but is limited by it's need for a very high Kv motor... you won't do any better in performance than the stock motor until you go brushless ($)... and you can't buy it without the stock motor/ESC currently. It is also pretty heavy for it' size which makes it pretty sturdy, but limits it's duration... and then there's the sloppy head which works well in practice, but not everyone is happy with.

The LMH/Corona is the Zagi of the heli world, hard-to-hurt, pretty stable, great for learning your basics, but limited due to being fixed-pitch. It is my recommendation for a beginner.

The Eco's design is showing it's age.. and the tradeoffs made to keep the price and weight down. You can upgrade it, but the mechanics are still a bit sloppy and the frame a bit flexible (even the CF/Ally upgraded version... you need to add an additional stiffener to make it really rigid!). But it is light for good duration (and that make it the most fragile of the currently available mid-sized e-helis... but much sturdier than a Whisper!) and can be made to fly reasonably well with some care and tuning while using a wide variety of motors. The basic kit at about $190 is the least expensive collective pitch mid-sized e-heli option.

Then there's the Logo 10 which I understand is a cut above all the above, and the basic kit is a good buy, but you need to be in 12-14 cell territory to make it really move and the power options tend to be $.

For me, I've been successful in getting the Eco to fly well and at a cost less then I'd have spent for a Voyager (but only because I got a great deal on two used ones) or Logo 10.... and I can share eq (motors and packs) with my Whispers... and if I were starting today, I'd probably sink my $ into a Logo. But I have the Ecos now and I have a long way to go before they limit my flying abilities.

So you can get a more precise, sturdier, better-built heli than the Eco, but it will cost more and weigh more. It's just a matter of choosing your tradeoffs.

Greg in Minneapolis

P.S. I'm very interested in how the Robbe Eulo turns out (looks heavy for it's size, tho)... and wish that the Gesmantel helis were more available, they look to be higher quality than the Eco at a similar weight.
Last edited by gstew; Jun 10, 2002 at 11:47 PM.
Jun 11, 2002, 12:15 AM
Registered User
My eco flew great with little (to none) vibs out of the box. A brushed motor works well, BUT requires lots of maintenance to keep the comm clean. A BL setup has more power, and more duration, AND requires no maintenance, a big plus.

My eco, in its box stock form plus auto gear (only got that when I got the BL setup) and rear servo mount took me from hovering, to FFF, nose in, and stall turns. At this point I sold it and went nitro to starting looping, flipping, rolling ect ect. These harder acro man. can be done on the eco (see carlo's setup :-)) but it will cost you more. Parts are usually easily available from, and the prices are equivalent to any JR IC chopper.

From my recent experience, it was by far easier to setup than a hornet. And I cant comment on the corona b/c ive never flown one, but it is fixed pitch.

BTW my eco flew just as long as my raptor does now (10 min), and climbed nearly just as hard, its one heck of a chopper!

Jun 11, 2002, 12:46 AM
Our Daddy and Heli Junkie
Fred Bronk's Avatar
I like that Greg;

"The Corona is the Zagi of Heli World"

I would agree with that totally except the Zagi in NOT a good trainer!
Jun 11, 2002, 01:07 AM
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The Eco8 is a great helicopter!! I love it to death!

Yes, maybe it's because it was my first helicopter ever, but hey it does fly awesome.

I started out building this machine with no experience on helicopters whatsoever (just R/C cars). Building was simple.. of course, there are always some hard parts... but nothing impossible. After that, came the tuning. It wasn't hard at all. I only had problems setting up the Revo Mix. A Futaba GY-240 would have saved me from this hassle.

I went from simple hops on the ground (with training gear) to hovering, then FFF, priouettes, awesome flares, and some Loops and rolls lately. Pretty soon I'll be doing some inverted flying. And by the way, I've never crashed it.. (yet ). I don't think the Corona will give you this aerobatic potential. Yes, it's sturdier and stronger, but that's the trade-off.

The point is that this helicopter can be lots of fun!! If you first do your homework!

Read about helicopters, learn how they work, learn the function of each component, ask for known-to-work motor/ESC's combos, practice, practice, patience, patience... and the Eco8 will get you there.

The Eco8 is NOT a bad helicopter. You need to have patience and learn from everybody else. There's no other helicopter in the market right now (that's electric) that can give you both longer run times and aerobatic capabilities at the same time. Like Greg said, it's all a trade-off.


PS: The Logo10 flies better though (but won't fly as long). But this doesn't make the Eco8 a bad helicopter. Just don't crash it..
Last edited by Chachin; Jun 11, 2002 at 01:09 AM.
Jun 11, 2002, 01:36 AM
Registered User

LMH/Zagi as trainer


I'm glad you like it... please send the $1 royalty to me every time you use it!

I will argue that the LMH is as good of a trainer in the heli world as a Zagi is in the airplane world, but you have to look at it a certain way.

First, I say that flying helis is more demanding than flying airplanes... helis are inherently unstable beasts which require a lot of mechanical devices working reasonably well to fly at all... you drop an airplane off a building and if it is trimmed ok, it will glide with no correction.

So it takes something to learn to fly helis. You have to understand the dynamics of how they fly more to be successful. You have to understand how they work to keep them working long enough to be successful. And it helps a lot to practice in the virtual world via a sim.

And if you apply the same level of discipline to learning to fly airplanes, understanding how they fly, how they work, and spending some time learning to do it via a sim, then I think you could learn to fly with a Zagi pretty easily. Actually, I know of people who've never flown before who got a Zagi and learned to fly on it... not what I'd recommend, but definitely do-able. The Zagis were pretty ugly before they were done, however!

So I stand by my statement!


Greg in Minneapolis
Last edited by gstew; Jun 11, 2002 at 01:56 AM.
Jun 11, 2002, 01:50 AM
Our Daddy and Heli Junkie
Fred Bronk's Avatar
Yeah, but an LMH is easy to fly for a heli, and pretty stable. It doe smake a great trainer!

A Zagi is tuff, but is no trainer. It will not right itself nor glide like a trainer will.

A heli you don't expect to fly or right itself (although some people think they should!)

But I still love the Saying!
Jun 11, 2002, 02:58 AM
Registered User
The ECO8 DESIGN is very GOOD, the quality is very POOR. Because of the poor quality in parts you can get very off centerd stuff. No one with some heli experiance can truly say that the linkages or the standard swash on the ECO is good? And can you really say that the masts are good? They bend by picking the heli up.. I think it is to fool beginners with the cheap price of the kit.
And the spare parts are quite expensive.

BUT(!) if you buy the kit, alu-swash, better linkage, alu pulleys, auto rotation wheel, CFK frame, CFK blades, tail servo mount, tail support... AND spend alot of time balancing it, it flies great.

I spent alot of time (more time then all my other helis together) to get it to fly good. I mean, i was´nt hovering only, i wanted to fly 3D with it. Well, you could, and that is nice to do on a electric.
It is fragile, but i never crashed it. The guy who bought it from me crashed it in a landing. It should have survived it.

If Ikarus took 60-80$ more, and shipped it with a better swash, better pulleys, hardend shaft, better quality linkage, it would be a much better heli.

The LMH Corona flies great, handles wind perfectly and is very durable. But after you´ve learnd how to fly, you cant progress to 3D with it. You CAN do loops and stall turns, but thats it. Well, for a beginner, when you reached this point, you have saved so much money on parts (compared to ANY other heli!) that you can afford to buy a better suited heli to continue with. I still love my Corona! Even if i mostly fly x-cell 60 and Raptor 50 now. still waiting for the eolo22
Last edited by Tom Viper; Jun 11, 2002 at 03:03 AM.
Jun 11, 2002, 03:25 AM
Registered User
Hi Tom
No I dont think either that the ECO 8 is a beginners heli,
but 3 in our club learned to fly with one, like many others.
A big heli is much more stable and would be a much better
beginnerheli but the high price make it difficult for many to
buy one. For me the ECO was a cheap way to start . I had
all the electric stuff which was needed.
Today I fly gasheli too, but I still fly my ECO, and when I
try new things I use the ECO. After all it is cheaper to repair.
Jun 11, 2002, 03:43 AM
Registered User
The only upgrades we (3) have used is 3 with autorotationwheel, 2 with hardend shafts, one with tailsupport, tail servomount, and GFK blades. We use three different motorsetup.

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