As I enjoy this heat wave in the Midwest (50 degrees, anyone?), I realized something. Never in my short time writing Raging Rotors have I discussed really what kind of ‘path’ one can take to become a competent RC Pilot. Well, better late than never! Over the next couple of articles, we will discuss steps to take to improve your skills and your tech to increase your pilot ‘street cred’. For you experienced RC Pilots, feel free to comment if you have any suggestions. RC is first and foremost a learning experience, so share your knowledge!
I’m a big fan of dedication. Many of you are likely looking into RC helicopters after putzing around with something already, whether a basic coaxial helicopter or one of the almost dozen basic quadcopters that have found their way to market in the last 18 months. If you are dead serious about getting into flying RC helicopters and multirotors, I would start by investing in a computerized radio. A computerized radio is more than your regular transmitter with trim buttons and gimbals, but one that not only (usually) has multiple model memory and a means of finite manipulation of specific flight channels (throttle, aileron, etc). For you Blade and E-Flite fans I’m talking minimally a Spektrum DX6 and JR Radios or for the Heli-max and Flyzone fans there are Futaba and Tactic radio systems. I flew my Blade Nano CPx on the stock non-computerized radio and also on a few different computerized radios, and there is a world of difference between the two. The primary difference is in the response to input: a computerized radio input provides almost instantaneous response in the aircraft. I was actually selling this concept to a coworker who flies one of the quads I own in an RTF format, and I had him fly mine on my Spektrum DX7s. Granted a baseline Spektrum DX6i is $140 and a Tactic TTX650 is $150, but I would not recommend this without the investment being worth it.
Next time on Raging Rotors: …Actually, I’m just going to spoil the title and leave the rest up to your imagination. Part 2 is ‘Pucker up, Buttercup!’
As always, feel free to leave comments about your experiences or ask me anything via kevin (at) bigsquidrc.com, but until next week, Stay Shiny and Keep Flyin’!
The Futaba crew has added 6 new S.Bus and S.Bus2 servos to their line-up. The new servos can give you an increase in power, they are made to take advantage of the power provided by 2S LiPo packs, and some of the models are water protected.
* S.Bus servos are highly programmable to optimize your install
* High voltage versions (HV) take full advantage of 2S LiPo power
* FUTM0131 – 133 oz-in & .12 speed at 7.4v
* FUTM0144 – 211 oz-in & .07 speed at 7.4v, water protected
* FUTM0719 – 54 oz-in & .16 speed at 7.4v
* FUTM0722 – 233 oz-in & .11 speed at 7.4v, water protected
* FUTM0724 – 111 oz-in & .08 speed at 7.4v, water protected
* FUTM0725 – 76 oz-in & .09 speed at 7.4v
These are available right now and you can get more information on Futaba S.Bus serovs at This Link.
Click Here for more Futaba news on BigSquidRC.
The new Futaba 10J is packed with features for you flying enthusiasts. It is the first “J” series radio to come with telemetry and it lets you download new software to keep it up to date. The 10J also has voice synthesis that lets you hear the telemetry as you fly, plus special programming for multi-rotor aircraft.
The part number for the airplane version is FUTK9200, the part number for the helicopter version is FUTK9201, and they both have a street price of $349. Both versions are expected to ship later this month and you can get more information at This Link on Futaba’s website.
Click Right Here for the first “big air” TGIF mystery link of the day.
The folks over at Hobbico are getting the word out that they’ve got some specials going on until the end of the month. Until February 28th you can save some bank on various surface and air products. Some of the more notable specials include-
* $100 off the Duratrax Nissan GTR Nitro 4wd RTR
* $40 off the 2013 ARRMA Fury SCT RTR
* $30 off the Axial Jeep Wrangler Wraith-Poison Spyder 4WD RTR and SCX10 2012 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 4WD Kit
* $30 off the Futaba 4PK Super R
There are many other items on sale, to view them all simply click This Link that takes you over to the sale page on the Best RC website.
Catch up on more Hobbico news right here on BigSquidRC by clicking This Link.
If you are anything like us, you can never have enough servos. It seems like every time we get in a new car we don’t have a an extra servo laying around to put in it. Such is life around the BigSquidRC offices.
Futaba has a Special Offer going on right now where they will give you a free S3004 servo with the purchase of a select 2.4GHz transmitter. When you buy a new 3PL, 4PLS, 3PM-X, 3PRKA, or 4YF before April 30th the good folks over at Futaba will hook you up with a legendary S3004.
To get all the details on the offer hit up This Link, to read more Futaba news on BigSquidRC just Click Here.
Over the weekend we had the pleasure of attending one of the largest indoor flying events in the country, E-Fest in Champaign Illinois. E-Fest is put on by the nice folks at Hobbico as a way of promoting the hobby during the cold winter months. Hobbyists from all over the Midwest drive in to get some flying time and spend time with other hobbyists.
While flying is the biggest part of E-Fest, they also have booths from various manufacturers. We spent some time in the Hobbico booth to get some pictures and check out their latest gear. The Hobbico booth featured products from Futaba, Heli-Max, AirCore, Tactic, Thunder Tiger and Flyzone. Whether you were into rc airplanes, helicopters, or multi-rotors, the Hobbico booth had something for you. No new products were announced at the show, but you can take a look at the pictures below to get a feel for what they had on display. To get more information on everything Hobbico, simply Click This Link.
Hobbico E-Fest 2014 Gallery
The crew over at Team GRID have sent out a press release regarding their 2014 drop down wheel lineup. This year Team GRID will be producing drop down wheels for the Spektrum DX3R/Pro, the Sanwa MT4/MT4 S, and the popular Futaba 4PL/4PLS. The drop down units are CNC machined out of aluminum and install in just minutes.
To check out the official Team GRID website Click Here, for more Team GRID news on BigSquidRC check out This Link.
Most of you already know Brian, he’s our editor here at the BigSquidRC offices. Recently Brian handed me his personal Futaba 4PLS and his sons Tactic TTX240 and said to “surprise him”.
Well here is his surprise, we had them hydro dipped in a Spongebob Squarepants print. Brian is a huge Spongebob fan and we also know how much he likes making fashion statements at the local bash spot, so here they are. We have no doubt these are going to turn some serious heads the next time Brian goes bashing.
Special thanks to DWayne at RC Custom Lab Workz for his excellent work dipping the transmitters, you can check his Facebook page out Here. To learn more about the Futaba 4PLS hit This Link, and you can check out the Tactic TTX240 right HERE.
The Futaba 4PL/4PLS is an extremely popular radio among the basher crowd. With Team Grid RD’s new mount you can now have a drop down wheel set-up on yours.
The Grid RC drop down mount is CNC machined and uses a unique mounting system so you don’t have to tear your radio apart to install it, which in turn keeps your factory warranty intact. There is no word on pricing, but Grid RC has said a final production version should be available in a few weeks.
Click Here for more Grid RC news on BigSquidRC.
Futaba has just announced a big sale on a bunch of their receivers, and we all know you can never have enough of them.
If you have been a hobbyist for very long, it is likely your rc garage went from one car, to five cars, to a lot more than that very quickly. The process of pulling out and re-installing receivers grows old fast, with the Futaba sale you can save some bucks and some time. Futaba has marked off up to $50 on their receivers. Check out This Link to see how much you can save on the Futaba receivers that you need.
Click Here for more Futaba news on BigSquidRC.
Always on the forward edge of technology, Futaba has announced their new line-up of S.Bus2 Servos. The S.Bus2 line is designed to be some of the best performing servos that money can buy. Some of their features include-
* The SV (high voltage) servos are designed for running 2S Lipo power without the need of a regulator.
* The BLS (brushless) servos offer 5 times longer life compared to a standard servo, plus extra holding power.
* SVi servos come with a removable connector so you can attach the length of cable that best suits the application.
FUTM0182 S3270SVi Micro SBus2 Servo- $59.99
FUTM0126 S3174SV Glider Wing HV Servo- $64.99
FUTM0180 S3173SVi Glider SBus2 HV Servo- $64.99
FUTM0137 BLS173SV Mini Airplane SBus2 HV Servo- $137.99
FUTM0184 BLS173SVi Mini Airplane SBus2 HV Servo- $139.99
FUTM0147 BLS274SV SBus2 HV Programmable Tail Servo- $154.99
FUTM0160 BLS671SV Mini 1/12 SBus HV Servo- $159.99
FUTM0186 BLS671SVi Mini 1/12 SBus2 HV Servo- $169.99
FUTM0143 BLS251SB Heli Rudder SBus2 Servo- $169.99
FUTM0148 BLS276SV SBus2 HV Programmable HS Servo- $194.99
FUTM0146 BLS273SV Heli FBL SBus2 HV Servo- $249.99
To hit the official Futaba website HERE is the link you want, to read even more Futaba news here on BigSquidRC simply Click Here.
THE Futaba 4PLS (4PL Super) S-FHSS Telemetry Radio Review
The venerable Futaba 4PL was perhaps the best radio system ever made for the bashing market. Well it’s deceased now, replaced by a newer model, the 4PLS (Super). Does the 4PLS live up to the high expectations? Being Futaba’s first surface radio with telemetry, did they get it right? Can it take an epic beating? Click the “Read More” button to find out… (And see the Durability Testing Video)
Industry leader Hobbico had a large suite showcasing their product lines at the 2013 HobbyTown USA convention. Among their featured lines were Duratrax, Futaba, and Axial, among many others.
One of the highlights of the Hobbico booth was their AirCore technology for airplanes. AirCore is basically a power cartridge that can quickly be popped in and out of various planes. The power cartridge contains a brushless motor, esc, receiver, and 3 digital servos and takes about 2 seconds to pop into an AirCore airplane.
We would like to thank the good folks at Hobbico for allowing us to use some of their gear during our demo at the HobbyTown USA show. I was driving a demonstration, jumping/bashing a Thunder Tiger MT-4 monster truck and Duratrax 835E buggy, while Brian was using an HPI Blitz to hold a “pit stop” contest for the HobbyTown USA dealers. Our gear from Hobbico put on a great show and helped add to the fun for all the dealers.
For more information on everything that Hobbico offers simply hit THIS LINK. To see more Hobbico news here on BigSquidRC THIS is the link you want.
Hobbico at HobbyTown USA Convention Gallery