View Full Version : Almost lost my thumb

03-06-2007, 02:09 PM
I replaced the swash plate and decided to redo the entire servo/ball link setup as I was getting some interference at max aileron/elevator and thought there was some misadjustment in the link lengths....

Was working with the pitch with throttle hold engaged to check for proper swash/link alignment when the motor suddenly spooled up. Fortunately, the carbon fiber blade struck my thumb which just happened to be between the blade and my right eye (don't know why it was where it was, it was just dumb luck). At any rate, the blade grip spindle bent in a u shape, and my thumb was numb for about an hour. But no bone break or cuts. The only thing that saved me was that the blades hadn't gotten up any momentum or speed otherwise I'm sure I would have either lost the thumb or at best shattered the bone. And if my thumb hadn't been between the blade and my face, I might have lost an eye.

Needless to say I won't be trusting throttle hold anymore and will disconnect the motor cables from the esc in the future.

Luck beats stupidity. This time. :oops:

03-06-2007, 02:26 PM
Oh, man.... I feel your pain. A similar thing happened to me but I wasn't lucky enough to come away unscathed (check my gallery). I haven't done a post mortem yet 'cause my finger's still sore but I will soon. Anyway, I 've gained a whole new perspective on heli safety (e.g. YOU CAN'T POSSIBLY TAKE TO MANY PRECAUTIONS :!: )

03-06-2007, 02:56 PM
Wow youre pretty lucky, btw what kind of heli was this?

03-07-2007, 12:37 AM
Wow youre pretty lucky, btw what kind of heli was this?

It's an HDX450SEV3B (TREX 450SE clone) and it's setup for 3000 rpm headspeed and as I mentioned carbon fiber blades.

I am still shook up about it. I learned a valuable lesson though. You can't depend on throttle hold. If you are working on your heli, and need to move the throttle to check pitch or the like, then you need to disconnect the motor wires. No exceptions.

03-07-2007, 07:22 AM

03-07-2007, 01:53 PM
Wow youre pretty lucky, btw what kind of heli was this?

You can't depend on throttle hold.

i agree. a similar thing happend to me when i was walking to pick up the heli, i got some interferance and the heli went to full throttle and striped some teeth of the main gear. luckily i didnt have my hand near the heli, but if it happend a few seconds later i would have.
now when i go to pick up my heli i carefully lay the transmitter down on the flor, making sure the ariel dosent hit anything and i dont touch it while the heli is armed, as it can cause interferance.

03-07-2007, 02:12 PM
So... waddya think caused it to spool up? In my case, I accidently switched the tx off. Pretty dumb, eh? :arggg:

03-08-2007, 11:46 AM
I don't know. Perhaps interference. I didn't have the antenna on the Tx extended (it was on the bench with the heli), which also may have been the cause. But I've done that dozens of times before when I was working with other rc stuff in close proximity and never had trouble with interference before.

03-09-2007, 07:38 AM
What radio? Use an RX flight pack to work on stuff like that and Disconnect the motor leads from the motor.

03-12-2007, 03:18 PM
I had a very similar accident 2 weeks ago. I was doing some maintenance on the heli (450 SA, 430L motor, mostly plastic parts) since I had little else to do that evening. I had been checking the pitch and looking for ccpm interactions. I flipped thr-hold on and was cycling through the various things.

This was mistake #1, working on the heli with the motor plugged in. I have a receiver battery just for this and everything.

When I was all done, for some stupid reason I flipped thr-hold off. This was mid-stick in idle up 1. Mistake #2, don't flip the switch off.

Here comes mistake #3: grab the rotor, that will stop the madness. I got lucky in that when the heli fell of the table the battery fell out and it powered down.

My thumb was swollen for 2 days, now its just purple under the finger nail. My hand was bruised in two other places.

As the heli fell, hitting the table and ground of course, it broke:

- Main rotor blade (wood)
- Main blade grip
- Seesaw holder
- Flybar control
- Tail rotor grip
- Tail rotor pitch control
- Tail case

So in addition to having a very sore thumb for a day, swollen another, and an ugly finger nail to finish it I got to buy a bunch of parts and I wasn't even flying the damn thing!

Lesson learned: plug the damn receiver battery pack in. These are not, by any means, toys.

10-05-2008, 06:43 PM
I've a smaller Walkera 4g1b and have never thought a light weight heli can do any damage until yesterday. The wind caught it and I ended up with 2 big gashs on my leg from the blades. Ouh:arggg:

10-05-2008, 06:44 PM
Next time no more kids allowed near the heli.:mad:

10-05-2008, 06:52 PM
Get yourself a 4.8 volt receiver pack. When working on the heli, unplug the esc lead from the throttle channel on your receiver and plug the battery in it's place. It's a lot easier than disconnecting the motor leads.

Glad to see you weren't hurt badly.

10-05-2008, 07:53 PM
Hey, if you guys want a smaller safer heli I highly recommand the the Walkera 4G1B which can fly in a reasonably sized yard or drive way. If you want an indoor flyer for the winter, try the Walkera 4#3B. Both are single axial, high quality, 2.4G Tx and shipped out from wowhobbies.com at around $100 + shipping from California. If you are willing to part with $300 to $400 than the Gaui 200 may be you thing. Although I've heard both the Gaui's belt-driven or shaft-driven tail are very fragile... just make sure you don't crash... lol :rolling