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Hey!

Lately I'm fascinated with these toys, but I'm a complete noob! I assume that, just like guitars, there's entry level stuff and there's multi-thousand dollar "pro" stuff...any jemsiters are into it?

I'm looking at this Heli-Max RotoFly kit, which is a little electric heli that seems cheap and easy to fly enough to introduce myself into this.

Any help is really appreciated!
 

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The electrics are definitely the way to go if you want to get into RC helicopters. Easier to set up, no gas engines to screw with while you're learning the basics, and you can fly 'em in your garage if the weather's crappy.

Here's a Hobby Lobby link with a bunch of electrics. I've heard especially good things about the Piccolo series. I think any would do as a good starter kit. Almost all are available somewhere as RTF versions.

http://www.hobby-lobby.com/elecheli.htm
 

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I've flown RC planes for years, and RC heli's for a while now.
The electrics are garbage IMO. They do not have the stability, or power of the nitro ones. I currently have a JR Vigor CS. Start with a 30 size nitro heli like the Raptor or Hirobo Sceadu evo. Getting an experienced pilot to help you will greatly increase your chances of success as will a sim like Realflight or XTR. I taught myself to fly a heli on the sim, real life was easier in my opinion except for the dollar factor. Electric heli's are not cheap if you get one that actually responds like a heli, and if you don't, if you start with one of the ones that is a lot simpler, then when you finally transition to a glow heli, it will be like starting over again.
Jeremy
 

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I definitely second the idea of using a flight sim. I used Real Flight for HOURS learning to hover. There's no telling how much money I saved on rotor blades learning on the sim first!

As for gas vs. electrics, each certainly has its merits. I'm not much of a 3D flyer, so the electrics are more my speed. Plus, if the weather's crappy, I've got a large enough shop I can fly inside. The gas choppers are more capable and versatile in many ways, but a touch more high maintenance. If you're just starting out in the hobby, I think it's easier to get in the air on a lower budget with the electric stuff (especially planes). It tends to also be less frustrating for a newbie. Once you get the hang of it, and if you really enjoy it, then step up to a better model. Sure you have to learn the characteristics of a new chopper/plane/whatever, but whatever you fly is going to be at least a little different. Fortunately, there are enough options out there for everyone!

BTW, Jeremy, I've seen the RC models you've painted, and they're fantastic. If you fly as well as you paint, I'd be embarassed to be at the same flying field as you!
 
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