A friend called and asked if I would look over and test out his new Micro Mosquito that he purchased from Radio Shack. This article is the result of our efforts and my conclusions since we ended up flying not one, but two Micro Mosquitos!
|Wingspan:||Rotor length 6"|
|Main Motors:||Two 7 mm coreless|
|Tail Motor:||4 mm motor|
|Micro Mosquito Battery:||160 mAh LiPo not replaceable per manufacturer|
|Available From:||Radio Shack|
Additional Items Needed:
Screw the antenna into the transmitter. Slide open the battery box and insert a 9-volt battery and close the battery box. With a Phillips screwdriver open the bottom of the charger and insert six C-size batteries and then close the battery box.
From the bottom of the charger pull out the charging cord and connect it to the front of the Micro Mosquito (arrow on top of the charger plug is on top facing the Micro Mosquito), and turn on the charger. When the green flashing light goes off, it is charged and ready to fly.
The left stick on the transmitter moves up and down only and is the throttle control for the Micro Mosquito. The right stick moves up and down and side to side. The up and down movement (or forward/backward if you prefer) controls the tail rotor that is facing upwards and moves the Micro Mosquito forwards and backwards. The right stickís side to side movement controls the spin of the entire Micro Mosquito. Coupled with forward motion, it allows one to steer the Micro Mosquito. There is one trim tab in the center of the transmitter, and it rotates left and right to allow one to center the spin of the helicopter (or to have the spin in neutral) for a stable Micro Mosquito.
I moved the left stick up/forward from the bottom/back position, and the rotors started turning. I moved the stick up quickly until I had lift off and when I gained a couple of feet of altitude, I leveled off by slightly moving the left stick down. The Micro Mosquito was in a constant, and rather fast, rotation to the left. I was able to get it to stop by moving the right stick to the right. I landed and turned the trim dial all the way to the right. I was hoping I would have some right spin on this next lift off. RATS! When I lifted off, it still had some left spin, but it was much much slower. I flew for a couple of minutes with the right stick held slightly to the right to prevent the spin and worked on controlling and changing the altitude.
I was starting to feel in control, so I moved the right stick up/forward and the tail rotor started spinning and the Micro Mosquito actually started to move forward. But I slipped a bit on the right stick and started spinning and losing my control of the Micro Mosquito's direction. I went down with the right stick and then to neutral, and then lowered the left stick as well. I landed back on the table but not on the landing pad. Two more short hops, and it was time for a charge. While the Micro Mosquito charged, I read through the instructions to see if there was a fix for the spin.
Per the instructions you "adjust" one of the rotors depending on the direction of your spin. Whether it is the top or the bottom rotor depends on the direction of the spin, but in either case they don't tell you how to "adjust" the rotor. I watched the main motors and their gears with the Micro Mosquito on and the rotors spinning as well as watching them with the MIcro Mosquito off to see if I could spot what turning the adjustment dial did to correct it. I spotted nothing.
I decided to try adding some tape to the legs of the Micro Mosquito. I thought adding tape to the left rear leg would make the spin worse, and it did. I tried the right leg, and I saw no difference between with and without tape. I wrapped some more around the right rear leg, and it might have helped a little, but I still needed to keep constant right with the right stick during the flight. Hoping it might get smoother with some running time, we flew it for a total of four charges and noticed no improvement. We decided to try a fifth flight and this one would be timed for duration. We understood flight times were supposed to be about 10 minutes, and we didn't think we were getting anywhere near that time in the air before it landed.
Pushing it to get as much flight time as possible, we learned that the Micro Mosquito would first seem to lose power and have to land at about five minutes. However after landing, I could take it right back up and fly some more. As the flight continued, I had to use more and more right on the right stick to keep control and prevent spin. When I got to full right to prevent spin, one of the rotors would slow down and force a landing. But alternating air time and landing, we were able to get 10 minutes of flight time from a charge.
I had no problems with radio signal or basic commands but the spin required constant right stick with the trim adjusted to the maximum to the right. That made flying very difficult to control. We took the Micro Mosquito back to Radio Shack and exchanged it for a new one after explaining our problem. Our local store was very understanding and gave us no problem. With the second model, we were able to get in trim and control the spinning while using less then half of the trim tab adjustment to the right. As expected it did require some adjustment during flight as the charge went down, but the difference in control of micro Mosquito 2 vs. 1 was as the difference between night and day.
I spooled up the rotors and lifted off the table. I made a slight adjustment to the trim tab and the copter was hovering in level flight. YEAH BABY! I gave more throttle and moved the right stick up as well for forward flight and forward she flew. I moved the right stick to the right and made a 180 degree turn and flew the Micro Mosquito back for a controlled landing on the table. I made two more flights where I had control, and then a fourth flight where I lost it a bit and made a forced landing after the top and bottom rotors bumped. My friend then made his first fully successful flight.
Three more flying sessions with full charges were conducted. While our control wasn't perfect, we found we had a pretty controllable micro helicopter with this second unit. We both need a little more practice time to fully master the control of the Micro Mosquito, but very good control came with this second model. We made a night video of the second Micro Mosquito to better show off its lights. It was a lot of fun to fly, and my friend went home with his Micro Mosquito intact and flying well... a very happy man.
Yes and no! As designed, the Micro Mosquito is for beginners. The manufacturer recommends that it is for those 12 and older, and that is a good general mark, but I trust parents and guardians to supervise and determine if their child is ready for this product or not. Other than that, there is no reason that a beginner canít succeed with the Micro Mosquito if it flies like the 2nd model tested.
Properly working, I highly recommend them as being very controllable and fun to fly. If you can control the spin by just adjusting the trim dial in the middle of the transmitter I suspect you have a model that can be easily controlled. If you can't stop the spin even adjusting the dial all the way in one direction then I would recommend exchanging it. The design appears to be very good, but there appears there maybe a quality control problem in the actual assembly. Keep your sales receipt, and check it immediately for spin control, and be prepared to take it back for an exchange if the spin can't be adjusted with the trim dial.
If you want something with controllable flight for small spaces indoors then this may be just the ticket for you.
I bought one of these earlier this year at the RAD Shack.
Flys great and pretty tough, but one big flaw as I see it. The on/off switch failed on two of these. The first one failed after about two weeks of use. Took it back and RAD Shack swapped me out. The second one lasted nearly two months of limited use, and the on/off switch also failed. The switch now just freely moves back and forth. Seems like the metal conductor tab breaks off inside. I've found several web sites that sell the parts, but it wasn't worth it to me to replace the copter.
Fun though when it flys and much better than the Silverlit Picoozz foamy's.
Oh, one thing, add a little super light oil between the rotor shaft and the tubes that they are housed in. As time goes by, the metal shafts tends to get a little sticky and cause the unit to work harder to spin. A little wd-40 free's this up, so it uses less Mah and also doesnt' require as much counter rotation correction caused by the extra drag.
you gotta love this if you own a blade CP or CX style of heli
I bought the original bladerunner heli from interactive toys wich carries the same mechanics as the mosquito. When you have trouble getting rid of the spins, they recommend to bend the blades on one of the rotors. Just take the back of the blade and bend it down to get a higher angle of attack.
The rotor to adjust depends of the spins direction. This has to be done once in a while, mostly if the rotors hit something.
trimming unwanted spin out
Exactly. What HE said! When one of these type coaxials spins too much, just add more torque to one rotor and decrease the torque of the other. When the heli spins by itself too much to the left -- as they like to -- then one has to decrease the leftward, counterclockwise torque which is coming as a Newtonian reation force fron the lower rotor (its clockwise motion gives a counterclockwise reaction torque). To do this one must decrease the pitch on the lower rotor, thereby both decreasing its reactive torque-producing drag as well as its lift. THEN one must INCREASE the pitch on the upper rotor, increasing its clockwise reactive torque and also then adding back the lift now taken from the lower rotor.
This is S.O.P. for ALL these type helis, clearly written in the instructions.
The simple "rule of thumb" is:
the tailboom will scissor-move itself towards (in the opposing direction to) the blade of the rotor passing over it with the most drag.
Trimming out spin.
I am a try and replace operator.
When in mid-flight my little beast started to spin counter-clockwise, no amount of adjusting with controller would counter the spin.
I tried fiddling with the blades as suggested (bottom one). Tried a new set of blades, still no effect.
No being an electronics person I figured it must be the controller, so bought a new one after opening the old one to look for adjutments (dumb move). No change with the new controller.
Is it possible there is an internal adjustment in the helicopter that needs tweaking?
Even with a new undamaged blade do I have to make some adjustments.
I guess I'd just like to get this to fly a few times before either junking it or deciding to try something more advanced...
Any comments or suggestions?
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