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Pitch It!

9/12/2007 by Jim Booker

Copyright:© 2007 Horizon Hobby, Inc.

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Pitch It! E-flite Micro/Mini Pitch Gauge for Small Helicopters

Heli pilots find out that one thing is very important when setting up their micro/mini helicopters: that is setting main rotor blade pitch. You don’t want too much pitch (too much load), but you do need enough pitch to fly properly. E-flite has introduced an easy-to-use and inexpensive pitch gauge to solve the problem easily. The E-flite Micro/Mini Helicopter Pitch Gauge takes all the guesswork out of getting it right. Take a close look and follow along as we describe the recommended steps to to follow for your setup:

  1. Very Important! Disconnect the main and tail rotor (if applicable) motors before proceeding with the pitch setup.

  2. Turn on the radio, power on the helicopter and move the transmitter’s throttle/collective stick to the center/mid position while holding the flybar level (relative to the tail boom). Then, adjust the main rotor blade pitch (by adjusting the linkages) so that the pitch gauge indicates 0 degrees on both blades. Make sure to take the reading with the top surface of the pitch gauge aligned and parallel with the flybar. And again, the flybar MUST be level (parallel) to the tail boom in order for the reading to be accurate and correct.

  3. Perform the same operation with the collective stick at both the maximum and minimum positions. Adjust the pitch to the manual’s recommended setting or to your own personal preferences. A typical “Normal Flight Mode” setup will use a pitch range from approximately negative 3–5 degrees (low collective) to a maximum collective positive pitch of 9 to 11 degrees. A typical “Idle Up” or “Stunt Flight Mode” setup will have a pitch range of approximately negative 9 to 11 degrees (low collective) to positive 9 to11 degrees (high collective).

After you make these adjustments you can go back and connect the motors so the model is ready to fly. Your heli should have the pitch settings required for flight, but you might want to fine-tune the settings per your personal preference and for the specific maneuvers you perform that may require different pitch settings (i.e. – more positive pitch for auto-rotations). Also, helicopter radios provide a programable “pitch curve” which can enable the pilot to further enhance the flight performance of their model. The E-flite Micro/Mini Pitch Gauge makes it easy to check the setup at any time with no special tools or procedures. Now you have it under control.