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TO - Track
the main blades
There are actually 2 different types of tracking, static
tracking and dynamic tracking
This is a very simple task, but one that is well worth
First place the helicopter on a nice flat standing area.
Then take a ruler or similar, and spread the rotor blades out so they
form a nice direct line along the head, as if you were preparing for
flight. Now turn the rotor head until the blades are out to the side of
the helicopter at 90 degrees. Place the ruler against the very
back outer corner tip of the blade, and note the measurement from the
ground to the blade. Repeat for the other blade.
Hopefully both should give virtually the same reading. If
not, then something is wrong, and needs to be corrected. First of
all, try pulling the lower blade up gently and re-measuring both, as
this can settle it in the damper rubbers. If it settles to within 2mm or
so that is fine.
If not, there are two things that may be causing the
problem. The most obvious one is that the mainshaft is bent, so
check that if you have not already done so. The second one is that
main hub that holds the head onto the mainshaft is not on totally
straight. On larger helicopters, you can often adjust this, but on
the smaller helicopters, such as the HBK2, Belt CP, Blade 400, Trex 4xx
etc you do not have that option as they are usually held on to the
mainshaft with a single bolt (often called the "Jesus pin" for
obvious reasons - if it comes out in flight)
You can try loosening this slightly, and adjusting the head
position to get the blades level, as there is always a certain amount of
movement on the mainshaft due to the poor manufacturing tolerances used.
If you can move the head and get the static tracking right,
re-tighten the "Jesus Bolt" as tightly as you can, to try to
stop it moving again.
is a relatively simple task, but it does require that you get your eyes
at the SAME LEVEL EXACTLY as the rotor blades, and those rotor blades
are going to need to be spinning at at least 50% throttle, which is
around 1000 rpm, which means the tips are going to be moving at 100mph
are a great many stories recounted in the RC helicopter world of main
blades flying off, tail blades flying off, nuts or bolts that have been
lost or dropped inside suddenly being thrown out by the high revving
main gear. These have resulted in some very
serious injuries, and it is just not worth taking the risk
first of all, ALWAYS ensure your helicopter is firmly fixed to something
heavy that it cannot possibly try to lift off.
not just use the skids to tie it down with, they are normally only held
on with 4 small screws, and can loose grip quite easily. Get something
like some short rubber ties with hooks on the end (like used to hold
stuff on a bike saddle bag or similar) and pass at least one OVER THE
FRAME or through it to be really sure.
carry out ALL the steps in the first (starting up) tip, and arm the
SOME SAFETY GLASSES ON - You can buy them from any hardware store for a
very few pounds or dollars, and they can easily save your sight, which
as far away from the helicopter as is reasonable while still letting you
perform the tracking, and SLOWLY spool it up to 40% throttle
below the arc of the main blades at ALL TIMES unless you are actually
looking at the tracking at the tips.
you do need to stand up straight - DROP THE THROTTLE RIGHT DOWN AGAIN.