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Jim Ryan

Are two rotor heads better than one?

Are two rotor heads better than one?

Ask anyone to draw a picture of a helicopter, and in nearly every case they’ll sketch the classic “conventional” configuration with a single main rotor and an anti-torque tail rotor at the end of a long tail boom. This layout hasn’t changed appreciably since Igor Sikorsky clamped down his Homburg hat and lifted his original […]
Check your BECs!

Check your BECs!

I recently had the pleasure of reviewing the Blade 600X, and I have found it to be the best-engineered 600-class heli I personally have flown.  The quality of construction is outstanding, the drivetrain is extremely stout, and handling is silky-smooth.  I look forward to getting a lot more flying time on this bird.  (See my full […]
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Gyro Programming 101

Gyro Programming 101

Many low-time heli flyers making the step from Bind-N-Fly micros to larger helis struggle with programming heading hold gyros. The following is a general guide for programming gyros. It’s not intended to address the much more aggressive setups needed for full-on 3D, rather the goal is to program a typical gyro for sport flying. Because […]
LET’S GET ORGANIZED!

LET’S GET ORGANIZED!

Electric helicopters are great, but one challenge is the need to stock and keep organized a wide variety of spare parts. As a scale guy and scratch builder, it’s even worse for me because obsolete or damaged parts that most flyers would toss become potential raw material for some future project. I spend about 150 […]
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Home-brewed Quads

Home-brewed Quads

 I’ll admit that multi-rotors haven’t really been my thing. I’m not heavily into aerial photography, and helicopters are just more interesting to me. I do get a kick out of the remarkable work some of the AP wizards have produced, particularly Gary Graf’s amazing flight videos (see Gary’s YouTube channel, FPVFlightSchool, for some examples of […]
Preventive Maintenance

Preventive Maintenance

Electric helicopters are far cleaner and smoother running than their nitro-powered brethren, meaning that they tend to require less maintenance. This, however, can be both a blessing and a curse. I’ll confess to being a bit haphazard with preventative maintenance on my helis, with an inclination to think, “It flew fine last time As my […]
HeliCommand HC3-SX

HeliCommand HC3-SX

Flybarless stabilization has exploded in recent years, and the latest units offer some amazing features.  Captron, best known for their HeliCommand stabilization systems, now has the X-series, a line of 3D-capable FBL units.  The top of the line HC3-SX not only offers outstanding 3D performance, it adds two remarkable flight modes that make it a […]
Taming the Shakes: Vibration Cures

Taming the Shakes: Vibration Cures

My first flight attempts with my Huey OH-6 were not successful because minor vibrations in the mechanics resonated in the scale body –particularly the T-tail—making it shake so badly it would literally eject the canopy. These vibrations had been present all along, but they weren’t a problem in the heli’s previous pod and boom incarnation. […]

V-22 Osprey Build Update #4

After a break to concentrate on other projects, the Osprey has moved back to the front of the project queue.  This evening’s project was to install the spindle axles that allow the nacelles to pivot from vertical to horizontal orientation and to assemble the special servos that provide power for the transition. First up is […]
V-22 Osprey Build Update #3

V-22 Osprey Build Update #3

This evening’s task is assembly the frames for each nacelle.  If you’ve built a couple of non-ARF helicopters in the past there won’t be any real surprises here, but definitely follow the instructions as the Osprey doesn’t function like a normal heli. A note of clarification:  One tends to look at the nacelles in their […]
V-22 Osprey Build Update #2

V-22 Osprey Build Update #2

Time to start building!  Assembly of the Osprey begins with the mechanics.  Although the body is a true ARF, the mechanics have to be assembled from individual pieces.  I consider this a plus for a couple of reasons:  First and foremost, on every “pre-assembled” heli I’ve ever purchased I felt it necessary to check every […]

RotorMast.com V-22 Osprey Build Update

Before starting the build, let’s take a look at the kit contents and talk about the hardware needed to complete the aircraft. The basic kit comes securely packed in a single compact carton.  Inside, the components and sub-assemblies are packed in smaller cartons, making shipping damage very unlikely.  The basic kit includes a profile airframe […]
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