Monday, October 11, 2010

Hobby Grade RC Helicopters for the Utmost in Realism

Hobby-grade model helicopters have long been considered the most difficult of all RC aircraft to master; if you have ever undertaken this task, you probably agree that is a reputation well-deserved. Their amazing flexibility allows them to can fly in any direction, right-side up or upside down, and react to input with remarkable swiftness. If you have seen an expert pilot put an RC copter through its paces, you know that these machines can do the seemingly impossible. However, that same versatility and flexibility is also what makes it such a  complicated, hard to control aircraft. Unlike toy or electric coaxial RC copters, hobby-grade, single rotor collective pitch models are every bit as complex as real helicopters. The operator of a nitro, multi-channel CP helicopter must, like the pilot of a full-size copter, think and act in three dimensions at once, using his arms and legs constantly and in unison just to keep it in the air. Piloting a hobby-grade RC copter requires extensive training, advanced skills, and continuous focus and attention.

Someone once said "A helicopter is a collection of rotating parts going around and around and reciprocating parts going up and down -- all of them trying to become random in motion. Right now!" There is no such thing as an easy time learning to fly a CP helicopter, requiring as it does such intricate interactions between the three major controls -- rudder, collective and stick. These control operations are severely interactive; an action with one will require a responding action with a second control, which in turn requires another action and so on,  with the pilot constantly  juggling the three controls, hopefully in harmony. While the basics of toy models or micro coaxials can be picked learned in a few hours or less, the hobby-grade RC copter requires an altogether different and more advanced degree of control. And as they are just  plain ornery by nature, they demand a substantial commitment of time and effort from budding pilots.

In the old days, most RC helicopters were powered by nitro or glow engines, which tended to be heavy, complex, and dangerous, not to mention very dirty and high-maintenance beasts. There were electric models but these were so large and heavy they posed transportation issues, and were also notoriously underpowered. Today's electric models are lighter and faster, more predictable, and safer to handle, making them very attractive to novice pilots. But the serious hobbyists still prefer the nitro models, inconveniences and all, because they look and sound and operate in such a realistic manner.

Only you can decide whether it is worth the investment of time and energy -- and expense - to be able to fly a hobby-grade RC copter. If you just want to fly as quickly as possible, with the least hassle, you may well be better off with a good quality electric. If on the other hand, you are looking for an experience that is as close as you can get to flying a real helicopter, then a single rotor, collective pitch RC copter is the only bird for you.

Align T-Rex Venom NightRanger and other great hobby-grade model RC Helicopters and RC Airplanes at RC Planes and

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