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Re-entry into AP

Posted 02-25-2008 at 03:32 AM by Whirly-Girl

My first go-round with AP nearly 2 years ago was a minor success. I bought all top of the line equipment and I loved it! I had a beast of a machine: a Bergen Intrepid EB swinging 810mm blades, a G-26 engine, and JR electronics. I used a HeliCam Solutions Pro 60-3x underslung mount and was taking pictures with my Canon S2 IS camera. All in all...a great setup!

But, some good things come to an end when you have family situations arise. You see, we lived in base housing at the time...unrenovated base housing. I had made several trips to the ER in the middle of the night because my infant daughter was getting sick and congestion was making her wheeze. It was very scary for me to sit up at night listening to her labored breathing. My son who is 19 months older than my daughter was getting colds and runny noses as well, but just not to the degree she was.

What we deduced - and never really got housing to admit - was that fiberglass insulation in our ductwork was causing reactions in our respiratory systems. We did find mold as well in our maintenance room (outside in the carport where the furnace was housed). But it was surface mold and only on the walls...not a large amount. Housing sent out a mobile unit to clean our ductwork and that's when I saw the problem. First off, it looked like the ducts had NEVER been cleaned. Crud was over 2 inches thick. After it was cleaned, that's when we saw all the loose fiberglass insulation. We knew the house was making us sick, because whenever we spent time away in our RV - even if for one night - we all felt better. It was time to move!

The next problem was: housing didn't have any renovated houses for us to move into on base. So, to make a semi-emergency move faster, something had to go in order to make the deposit on a nice, clean rental up in the hills. My poor Bergen was the sacrificial ship. And so began my year-long wait to re-enter AP.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago. A year of sitting here waiting and watching and drooling has forced me to do ALOT or reading on different setups...different techniques...and different markets. My goals have changed and therefore my platform has changed. My goal is to market mostly residential/commercial real estate. I used to get the big-eyed look when I described my gas heli with pride. The noise and sheer size scared some people. I loved the simplicity of fueling up, giving her 3 pulls and lifting off! But, it was now time to switch to e-power.

Sitting here before me now is a T-Rex 600 (aluminum frame). It has a stock 600XL motor, stock ESC, but I up'd the regulator to the 6A with 2-way step down. I'll start with the stock 1200 battery, but chances are I'll end up with a higher capacity one later. I installed 3 DS811 servos on cyclic and I'm using a GY401/9254 combo for the tail. A JR 921 receiver will guide the bird with my X9303.

Other upgrades include: metal pulley's front/rear for the belt and metal blade grips. I'll be using 2 different sets of main blades: the first set is a pair of 600mm semi-symmetrical blades that I bought for auto practice on my nitro and the other set will be 600mm Radix blades.

The camera & mount: This time around I chose the front mount. I want to keep the weight light and I like the flight characteristics better. Plus, if I decide to try video later, I'll be one step ahead. A custom mount is on order right now with Askman ( and should be here within another week or so. He's a busy guy!! I'll also be shooting with a different camera too! Why not change EVERYTHING!?!? I have a Canon A640 which is being hacked to use an RC FlySoft single switch right now. I'll add a wide angle lense after intial testing and setup is complete.

So, the only thing keeping me from the air right now...beside cruddy the battery purchase. Unless advised otherwise, I'm going to buy a FlightPower Evolite 6S 5350. Just need a spare $300.

So, I'm almost back!
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  1. Old Comment
    int2str's Avatar
    That housing situation sounds scary! Glad you got it all worked out!

    Post some pictures of your AP setup!
    Posted 02-25-2008 at 03:58 AM by int2str int2str is offline
  2. Old Comment
    FlyinTiger's Avatar
    Great job WhirlyGirl! I am glad you are sticking with it and are letting everyone know why you chose a different set up.

    As your on call camera man, I'll really like the smoothness of the e-setup! Cleaning and maintenance while you are shmoozing with the customers will be a piece of cake. Good customer service is what is going to make the difference in this emerging niche.
    Posted 02-25-2008 at 04:42 AM by FlyinTiger FlyinTiger is offline
  3. Old Comment
    WillJames's Avatar
    Glad to hear you are almost back at it Jeanette!!
    Posted 02-27-2008 at 02:53 PM by WillJames WillJames is offline
  4. Old Comment
    Ginvent's Avatar
    Go Whirly Girl!
    Posted 02-28-2008 at 09:55 AM by Ginvent Ginvent is offline

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