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130X Blade 130X Helicopters Information and Help


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Old 06-14-2013, 10:15 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Blade 130x Maintenance Items

After flying my Blade 130x, for the last few months (fly it everyday through at least 6 battery packs), I’ve found a number of things that I thought might help others as they deal with maintenance on these small helicopters. Micro-sized helicopters need more maintenance than larger models due to the need for tighter tolerances and how quickly they become loose due to wear.

I’m providing this information because my 130x started the wobble of death when pulling up into a stationary hover from fast forward flight (flying in Idle Up). Since I managed to solve the tail vibration issue on mine I started looking at the causes of this terrible head-wobble. I solved this issue after I figured out what was wearing out on the helicopter’s rotor head, swash plate and servo assembly along with tail gear mesh.

I am also using the stock parts as I’ve found that these do a serviceable job when you maintain this model carefully. I’ve found that most of the people “blinging” out their 130s coming back to these basic upgrades:
  • Metal Tail Slider
  • Metal Swashplate
I will not be discussing the problem solving that others have done but how to maintain these models and what to look for when needing replacement parts.

The links listed below, created by James Haley of Horizon Hobbies, show how to take apart this model when it needs maintenance. I am basing this process on a flying model that has not been crashed even though many of these items will need to be checked after a crash.


Blade 130x Main Rotor Head Repair:
Blade 130 X Main Rotor Head Repair (4 min 34 sec)


Blade 130x Front Tail Gear Repair:
Blade 130 X Front Tail Gear Repair (5 min 31 sec)


Blade 130x Rear Tail Gear Repair:
Blade 130 X Rear Tail Gear Repair (15 min 36 sec)


Now onto the maintaining this wonderful little helicopter so we can keep your 130x running smoothly:

Tail Section Maintenance:
Tail Rotor Balancing:


I’ve found away to double check the balance of the tail rotor but is does include taking the tail shaft along with blade grips, tail shaft, and tail blades out of the helicopter. Once you have the tail rotor out of the helicopter then follow these steps:
  1. Remove the pitch slider and bell crank by popping off the little ball links off the tail rotor blade grips.
  2. Leave the tail shaft, blade grips, and tail blades together in one assembly
  3. Slide the tail shaft into the tail box from the left side so you can freely spin the tail rotor assembly without it hitting the bell crank mount.
  4. Spin it to see which the tail rotor blade is heavier.
  5. Add a small piece of packaging tape to the lighter blade (place it in the center of the blade) If you’re very fastidious about this process you can roll the rotor blade over a small piece of music wire to find the chord wise balance then mark this for the exact placement of the tape when doing your balancing process.
  6. Add a large piece of packaging tape from which you can cut small sections from as you test the balance of the assembly.
  7. Keep working until the tail rotor balances level when completed.
Make sure you fold the tape over the leading edge to keep it from coming loose. You will only need a small amount of tape but it does make a major difference in the vibration once you get it right.
John Salt also discusses this on his website called RC Helicopter Fun via this link: http://www.rchelicopterfun.com/130X-tail-vibration.html

Tail Case:
Your tail case will wear over time as the holes that support the flanged bearings will become oval in shape allowing the tail shaft rotating in the bearing to wiggle back and worth causing serious tail vibration. I replaced a set of bearings before I realized that this is a wear item and needs to be replaced. Follow James’ directions to remove the tail case from the tail boom.

Tail Bearings:
These do wear out but I’ve found that they are much maligned; as no bearing will stand up to the pounding that un-balanced tail rotor vibration produces. I’ve found that these need to be replaced as necessary when they start feeling notchy or don’t rotate smoothly. These bearings are press fit into the plastic so all you need to do is press them out as necessary to replace. Just press the new ones back in to the appropriate location then seat them carefully.

Tail Gears:
I have found that these little monsters actually are stronger than they might seem at first notice. The “C” gear needs to be on the torque tube and the torque tube protrudes approximately 1 mm when done correctly.
Check these gears for wear then replace as needed. Mine have survived a number of crashes and have yet to be replaced.

Tail Boom:
Check for cracking:
The tail boom can start flexing due to a micro crack running along the seam. If you are seeing a good deal of up or down/left to right flexing it could mean that this part should probably be replaced.

Check for tail boom proper placement in the frame:


On mine the tail boom was pushed into the frame so tightly that the “D” gear was not seated properly and the gear mesh was so tight on the crown gear that the main rotor/tail rotor did not rotate drag free. To fix this do the following:
  1. Loosen up the screws where the tail boom is mounted into the frame along with the boom support mount screws.
  2. Pull the tail boom slightly out of the frame.
  3. Once you have a smoothly moving main rotor, torque tube, and tail gears re-tighten the frame screws along with the tail boom support mount screws. The torque tube will protrude approximately 1mm and fit in the little well properly once you’ve completed this process. I think that this is the main reason that the crown gear or “A” strips due to this mesh being over tightened.
Lastly, I feel that it is a good idea to put the metal crown gear and having the front gears being metal and keeping the back gears in plastic. Lastly, put a small drop of TriFlow oil on the “A” and “B” gears to help reduce friction.

Tail Pitch Slider:
This little part is made of plastic and uses metal bearings imbedded in the plastic. It is definitely a part that I’ve replaced but it will last if the tail rotor is well balanced. As I mentioned above this is probably the number one part that is kept when someone blings their 130s then returns back to the stock plastic parts. I like "bling" but I need a performance upgrade for the cost. I’ve replaced two of them and the third is running well at this juncture. Just put a small drop of TriFlow oil on the slider to rotor shaft to cut down on friction.

Bellcrank:
This is another replaceable part and should be done if there is play in the fork and pin on the pitch slider. I also put a small 001 O-ring between the ball link and the ball on the bellcrank. I sure wish Horizon Hobbies would provide us with a set of replacement ball links for this model!

Rotor Head, Swash plate, Link, and Servo Maintenance:
Rotor Head Maintenance:
One of the best ways to remove rotor head wobble is to carefully balance your rotor blades. I use two different balancers, a Heli-Max blade balancer: http://www.helimax-rc.com/tools/hmxr4855.html for span wise balancing and the Dubro Prop Balancer: http://www.horizonhobby.com/products...alancer-DUB499 to dynamically balance the rotor head. It is better to use the entire rotor head minus the swash plate, as you will balance the entire head. If you only want to balance the blades then use a small 6” section of carbon fiber that slides tightly but not forced through the rotor blades’ mounting hole. I then use two small rubber bands, from someone has them for their braces, crossed over to keep them straight as I spin them then place a piece of tape on the lighter blades’ balance point.
John Salt, the owner of the RC Helicopter Fun website, has a number of eBooks dealing with the setup of collective pitch helicopters that can be found on this link: http://www.rchelicopterfun.com/rc-he...r-e-books.html You can also search YouTube for videos on this process as it does make your model fly without wobble.

Swash plate Maintenance:
I’ve found the stock swash plate retains its tolerances, even when it has many flights on it, so this hasn’t been a core issue but the small O-rings need to be replaced, as they will wear out. I found 001, 002, and 003 silicone O-rings at the ORings and More website. Replacing these helps dampen the vibrations that many say come from the AX3S system.

Servo Cleaning:
Here is a great video showing how to clean your servos. I don’t know how many flights I’ve had on my 130x but I’ve noticed them starting to jitter more and not holding their positions as solidly. While this is shown using a set of mCPx servos it is still applicable to all 130x owners:
Blade mCPx Servo Cleaning:
Blade mCPx Linear Servo Cleaning (8 min 29 sec)


Swash plate to rotor head:
The little links that run from the swash plate to the blade grips need to be replaced on a regular basis. As they start wearing they get very loose which allows a great deal of up and down play from the blade grips to the swash plate.
The main rotor blade grips should be looked at for wear as you are replacing the links. This is also a good time to take apart these assemblies and add a little TriFlow grease to the dampeners. These dampeners don’t seem to wear out very quickly but I replaced the feathering shaft, dampeners, and other parts in the head with Horizon Part Number: BLH3712


Replace any parts that you think are questionable but here is what was causing me issues on mine:
  • The links from the swash to the main grips
  • The little O-rings
  • The tightness of the little feathering shaft screws
  • Main Blade tightness
Make sure you set the tension on the blade grips as per James Haley’s video on Main Rotor Head Repair as they are way too loose from the factory.

Swash Plate to Servos:
I found the O-rings on the swash plate had worn and replaced them with the 003 O-rings above but more importantly the plastic links wear out as well. You will have to replace the links and pushrods as Horizon Hobbies doesn’t sell just the links separately. That part number is BLH3708; just measure the one that you are replacing with a caliper and make the new link/pushrod the same length.
While you are dealing with this process make sure your swash is level by sighting a small dowel placed on the swash. Use this to align the swash both left and right/fore and aft to make sure it is level. You can also use the small lines as shown by John Salt’s review of the 130x to set zero pitch: http://www.rchelicopterfun.com/blade-130X.html
While there are a couple of swash plate levelers for the 130x it is just as easy to do it visually using a dowel. I will probably buy the LYNX 130x swash plate leveler in the near future.

Main Rotor Shaft/Gear:
I’ve decided that this is a wear item because the little lock collar does wear as it is riding on the top bearing in the frame. You can’t buy a replacement but the main shaft assembly isn’t that much money so you can just replace it when the up and down play become excessive.
The Main Gear will also wear but it is very important to seat it correctly and I use a small wire nut to push it is place. You can get some other tips from this YouTube link:
mCPX Swashplate & Pitch Tips - indoorHELLi 006 (9 min 24 sec)

Put a small drop of TriFlow oil on the main shaft where it spins inside of the swash plate.
Lastly on the main shaft, if there are little hairline fractures this will allow vibrations to occur. Make sure it isn’t split or worn but as mentioned above I think you should just replace it on regular intervals.

Gain Menus and Subtrim:
My 130x needed a few “clicks” less of gain to keep happily running without a left and right wag. You can obtain the method for doing so at this HeliFreak post:
https://www.helifreak.com/showthread...130x+gain+menu
You will also need to adjust your subtrim on any servo that wanders using the Calibration Process found on this link: http://www.horizonhobby.com/pdf/BLH3...l_Addendum.pdf
from Horizon Hobbies.

So where does this leave us?


I replaced the following parts during my last maintenance session:
  • Main Rotor Shaft (wanted cracked but I needed the collar)
  • Tail Case
  • Pitch Slider
  • Tail Bell Crank
  • Pushrods and Ball links
  • Links between swash and Main Grips
  • O-rings throughout
  • The 1.5x4x1.12 Bearings in the Torque Tube (BLH3727)
I cleaned the following:
  • Servos
  • Main Gear
  • Plastic “C” and “D” gears
Tolerances Set:
  • Torque tube gears
  • Main Blades re-checked for balance
  • Tail Rotors re-checked for balance.
  • Reset my gain back to original settings
  • Reset subtrims
And now my little bird is flying perfectly again with no wobble even with the stock gain set on aileron and elevator. I am also using all stock parts with no tail vibration but it does take time to get this model dialed in correctly.

Is there cost involved with maintaining this little model? The answer is yes but I have never had a small helicopter that is as fun or has let me set it on the deck then fly out into the open space allowing me to practice my inverted hovering/flying. The SmackTalk R/C video on micros discusses the need for maintenance and I believe it whole-heartedly. I will leave you with a review from the A-Main Hobbies website: http://www.amainhobbies.com/product_...views_id/16070

The following might be a good schedule to follow when doing your maintenance:

Every Flying Session:
  • Check for loose screws, wires touching the motor, and broken gears
  • Check for anything out that doesn't appear normal with the AX3S/Servos
  • Put a small drop of TriFlow on the Main Shaft where it fits through the Swash Plate, Gears "A"/"B", and Pitch Slider Bushing
  • Check the Blade Tightness for both Main/Tail Rotors
Every Week:
  • Check for extra play in Ball Links
  • Check for extra play in the Links that run between the Swash Plate and Main Rotor Grips
  • Check for extra play in the Tail Pitch Slider
  • Check for tightness in the Main Torque Tube gearing and adjust as necessary
  • Check for any wiring issues
  • Adjust Gain/Subtrim as needed
Once a Month:
  • Replace Ball Links/Pushrods as necessary (BLH3708)
  • Replace Main Gear if worn (BLH3703)
  • Replace Main Rotor Shaft (BLH3709)
  • Replace Tail Case as needed (BLH3725)
  • Replace Tail Pitch Slider if worn (BLH3728)
  • Replace O-rings
  • Replace any of the "C"/"D" Gearing as necessary (I would replace these as a set with BLH3729)
  • Remove/Reinstall the Main Blade Grips with new Feathering Shaft, Dampeners, and Bushing (BLH3712)
  • Replace any Bearings that are not turning smoothly and I think the following would be most likely to have issues:
    • Main Rotor Shaft Bearing (BLH3704)
    • Flanged Tailcase Bearingss (BLH3730)
    • Torque Tube Bearings (BLH3727)
  • Clean Servos
  • Double check all wiring
I can take my 130x apart down to the bare frames and have it back together again ready to fly in 3 hours. I've been building model helicopters since 2010 and feel that the time needed to do this maintenance pays for itself in a better flying model. Once you observe something that isn't acting normal, your knowledge of this model will quickly allow you to find the cause.

I hope this helps as it is such a nice flying model and I think it is being bad mouthed due to lack of understanding its small size. Write me if you find other tips for maintenance on this model!
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Last edited by mweiland2; 06-15-2013 at 02:39 PM..
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Old 06-14-2013, 11:25 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Excellent compilation of information. Should be stickied.

Any backers in this assessment?
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Old 06-15-2013, 10:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Agreed, should be a sticky. Thanks for posting mweiland2.
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Old 06-15-2013, 11:30 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Blade 130x Maintenance Items Updated

Thanks for your comments!

I was trying to provide a method for taking care of these little birds and I think the lack of understanding about the small size is what causes the greatest number of problems.
Just think about this for a moment:
  • This model has a honest to goodness Torque Tube in it.
That alone is a technological marvel!
I added a maintenance schedule to the post this morning and corrected some of the wording so let me know if you find something that doesn't make sense I will try to take photos, make a video, or word smith things to clarify them.

I would also like to thank Brad of Action Hobbies, John Salt of RC Helicopter Fun, and you, the readers here at Helifreak, for all of your ideas and support. I wouldn't have learned as much as I have in such a short time without you!
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Old 06-15-2013, 12:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Action Hobbies is on my speed dial. I would have given up the hobby if it weren't for Brad.
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Old 06-15-2013, 11:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Sticky fo sho. Lots of info I needed but hadn't found in there! thanks
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Old 06-16-2013, 12:09 AM   #7 (permalink)
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+1 sticky! Great post
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Old 06-16-2013, 12:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Lots of good info, good to have in 1 post although I dont agree with it all.

For instance, no mention of the 3rd bearing Tailbox mod. I have found this 'essential' on all my 130s, once I do this, I have never needed to balance tail blades and have vibe free tail on all my birds.

Also, I only replace parts when they need it...either thru crash damage, or diagnosis shows they need replacement.

Oh well, we all do what works for us
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Old 06-16-2013, 01:18 AM   #9 (permalink)
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+1. Sticky Please.
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Old 06-16-2013, 07:31 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Agreed, sticky, but there are already a lot of stickies in this forum. This duplicates information in some other stickies, so un-sticky those. Like the "Blade 130x Repair Videos" one.
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Old 06-16-2013, 11:19 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Sticky
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Old 06-16-2013, 11:21 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Good Morning!
It is nice seeing so many 130 flyers here in Colorado. Maybe we should have a 130 fun fly sometime!
I agree with you on only replacing parts as needed but the ones that I outlined are those that I've found to be of issue when I check my 130 when doing maintenance.
Linklemming, I wasn't trying to look "mods" but those things that have to do with the stock model. I would like to know more about the third bearing so let me know which post it was discussed on.
Thanks for your comments as this is the most interesting hobby/addiction that I've ever had!
Good flying!
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Last edited by mweiland2; 06-16-2013 at 11:23 AM.. Reason: Adding name to post
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Old 06-16-2013, 01:29 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mweiland2 View Post
...It is nice seeing so many 130 flyers here in Colorado. Maybe we should have a 130 fun fly sometime!...
There's an indoor fly in south Denver June 29th:

http://images.rcuniverse.com/forum/u...89/Vt56887.jpg
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Old 06-16-2013, 04:32 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoatRider View Post
Agreed, sticky, but there are already a lot of stickies in this forum. This duplicates information in some other stickies, so un-sticky those. Like the "Blade 130x Repair Videos" one.
+1. I can see this superceeding that one.
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Old 06-17-2013, 12:24 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mweiland2 View Post
I would like to know more about the third bearing so let me know which post it was discussed on.
Thanks for your comments as this is the most interesting hobby/addiction that I've ever had!
Good flying!
While its listed as a 'mod' dont get too caught up in the name. Its pretty simple to do and has eliminated tail vibes on all my 130s

https://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=437724
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Old 07-21-2013, 02:18 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Some more items concerning our little servos

I came across this thread: https://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=464101
That discusses some of the items that we should watch out for with our tiny servos found in the Blade 130x. The main points were posted by DoubleCH and are described very nicely:
I think we're looking at a few different types/causes of servo problems here.

1. not enough clearance between A gear and elevator servo FET:
- symptom: servo stops at random position. Turning it by hand won't help
- kills elevator in as little as 1 flight.
- remedy: Replace servo and make sure to have enough clearance

2. debris stuck between gear teeth:
- symptom: servo stops at random position. Turning it by hand may help.
- sometimes debris is extremely hard to see especially if it's white (don't ask me how I know)
- remedy: carefully clean the teeth with toothbrush or needle.

3. servo motor failure or servo wires broken:
- symptom: servo stops at random position. Turning it by hand doesn't help. Symptom may be intermitttent at first. Broken wire may be obvious
- usually happens within a couple handfuls of flights
- not sure about bad QC but I think quite likely from tail vibes
- remedy: Replace servo and balance tail rotor. No tail-fin resonance above 40% throttle is not enough. Strive for no tail-fin resonance at any RPM.

4. servo "fingers" have bad contact
- symptom: servo moves to one extreme end on battery plug in and motor is still kept powered and gets hot and may burn out mainboard BEC. Gear won't turn because motor is still powering it
- servo fingers may be wearing out, bent, broken, or servo carbon/metal strips are dirty
- remedy: try clean the carbon/metal strips 1st. Have a detailed inspection on the fingers. They may be bent, wearing out (mine lasts about 600 flights), broken, etc. Failing those, replace servo or servo motor/gear assembly, or do the custom "fingers" mod (not recommended for everyone).

5. servo motor brushes failure:
- symptom: servo stops at random position and turning it by hand won't help. Symptom may be intermittent at first. You may "jumpstart" the servo motor by giving the gear a push. No broken wire can be detected
- usually happens no earlier than 200 flights. On mine, it always happen soon after 200 flights
- these servo motor brushes are wimpy (thinner than a hair) but perhaps crashes may accelerate wear on them. Perhaps pilot skills is also a factor. Bad collective management and/or bad stick control (hint: me) may lead to AS3X working servos harder than normal
- remedy: replace servo or servo motor/gear assembly or do the custom brushes mod (not recommended for everyone). Crash less, get better collective management and stick control (easier said than done, guilty as charged)
I am learning all the time about these little beasts and am glad that we can share what we've learned in this forum. Good flying!
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Old 09-20-2013, 11:28 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Easy way to clean Blade 130 X servos

I've been having the same problem a lot of folks have been having with the servos in the Blade 130 X. The worst one is the tail servo, but I've also had other servos develop a pronounced jitter.

I've read the posts and watched the YouTube videos of people disassembling the servo to clean the contact strip inside the servo. The problem is that this is a real pain, and you run the risk of causing more harm than good.

The latest servo to develop the jitter was the front cyclic servo. To get at this servo you basically have to disassemble the entire helicopter taking 1-2 hours.

Instead of going down the disassembly route, I've taken to a new method for cleaning the servos. I have a can of the plastic safe contact cleaner (get it at Fry's if you live in California, or Radio Shack everywhere else). Point the nozzle at the slot where the linear servo mechanism slides up and down and give it a good blast above and below the plastic connector. Then, before the contact cleaner solution evaporates, work the servo up and down from your radio.

If it doesn't work the first time, give it another try as there may be some residual carbon left on the wiper. This method works every time for me. I'll then get 10-20 more flights before I have to repeat the procedure.
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Old 09-20-2013, 02:50 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darylhuff View Post
Instead of going down the disassembly route, I've taken to a new method for cleaning the servos. I have a can of the plastic safe contact cleaner (get it at Fry's if you live in California, or Radio Shack everywhere else). Point the nozzle at the slot where the linear servo mechanism slides up and down and give it a good blast above and below the plastic connector. Then, before the contact cleaner solution evaporates, work the servo up and down from your radio.

If it doesn't work the first time, give it another try as there may be some residual carbon left on the wiper. This method works every time for me. I'll then get 10-20 more flights before I have to repeat the procedure.
Yes, this is the first thing to try before disassembly. I think Deoxit works better for this than the radio shack stuff, but it's basically the same idea. You can get a lot more flights if you disassemble and scrub.
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Old 10-07-2013, 10:27 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Default bearings

the bearings in this heli need replacement rather frequently. We have full kits #H09-007 as well as just the torque tube and tail shaft bearings #h09-026 incase you dont want to buy all the bearings.
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Old 11-30-2013, 07:12 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Default blade 130x servo help

Hey guys do anyone know about the blade 130x servos I need to center the horn on my hitec 5035 and I don't know which is the pitch or aleron
farley is offline        Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
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