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Not nearly so chicken after today!

Posted 02-18-2008 at 04:54 PM by Trooper Sam

At last, I've crossed a major hurdle in my RC helicopter experience.

Today, at last, without it being an emergency, I pulled the hold switch and did my first planned autorotation.

I'd been getting a bit froggy with my 600 the past couple of days, with rolls, loops, flips, and even flipping it inverted for a few seconds before I rolled out to recover. I'd also been mixing it up with a lot of slow controlled flight near the deck, as I've been wanting to get much more precise in my flying.

I took a pack and decided it was all going to be practice approaches for autos, flying in normal mode so that the motor would still be on and available, but otherwise treating them as just like autos, with the same amount of pitch and the same profile as if it were real, without actually touching the ground.

It was getting to the point that my transitions seemed very smooth from the descent into a full stop hover, and I decided that the next pack was when I'd pull the switch and see if I had actually learned anything, or if I'd bring home pieces.

I climbed up to about between 150 and 200 feet, and decided to ignore the sick feeling in my stomach and pull the switch. One of the other flyers at the field was tuning an engine on a plane, so I heard no difference in sound when I did so, but I continued on, dropping the stick to about a little less than half negative.

She came down, nice and gentle and slow, and it was easy to control and maneuver, just like the sim. I flared out a little high, and got a bit of a bounce on touchdown, but nothing to be alarmed about. Then I noticed; a set of concentric circles was painted on our field for an impromptu spot landing contest, and my auto had landed right in the middle of it. Not intentional, but you take your victories where you can get them.

I exclaimed out loud "YES!!!" I had finally crossed that line that I had drawn into the sand myself, and done so without bringing home pieces. I proceeded to take it out of hold, and take it right back up again to repeat the process.

I used two packs to do nothing but autos, and I only bailed out of one because it sounded like I was losing too much headspeed in one descent. Other than that, I must have done over twenty of them.

Now, with it out of the way on the 600, I think it's time to auto the Vibe.
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  1. Old Comment
    int2str's Avatar
    Nice job!

    I've seen the 600 auto - it's almost cheating though
    That bird seems to be able to hang in the air for 2 hours after you stop the engine, before it loses any altitude .

    With my 450, I haven't "auto'ed" it higher than about a foot off the ground. I'm not worried about the flaring so much as uneven ground tipping it or the slowing head wobbling and throwing the heli over.

    I have yet to muster up the guts to just try it....
    Maybe after I crash the 450 the first time, I won't be so worried about messing up the paint job anymore and just auto it
    Posted 02-18-2008 at 05:07 PM by int2str int2str is offline
  2. Old Comment
    xeispen's Avatar
    Congrats man. All I can do is hovering autos with the 450 I'm working up the nerves to take her up high.
    Posted 02-18-2008 at 10:59 PM by xeispen xeispen is offline

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