What is the Best RC Helicopter for Inexperienced RC Pilots?
If you love RC aviation but are new to the world of RC helicopters, you might ask yourself, “What is the best RC helicopter for inexperienced RC pilots?” The answer might surprise you. In many hobbies, starting with the smallest and cheapest is a wise decision because you’ll get to experiment and get a feel for the gadget without being heavily invested in it. With RC helicopters, that isn’t the case. You’ll want to consider the size and the availability of flight assistance in your first RC helicopter.
RC Helicopter Sizes
RC helicopters are not to scale like many other RC vehicles. RC cars, trucks, and even RC airplanes are often a scale ratio to the vehicle they are modeled after. However, with RC helicopters, sizing (known as class) refers to the size of the blades. Micro or nano RC helicopters have blades under 200mm. Mini RC helicopters are between 200mm and 425mm. From there, the class of the helicopter equates to the size of its blades; a 600 class RC helicopter has 600mm blades, and a class 700 RC helicopter has 700mm blades.
Micro or nano RC helicopters are a lot of fun to fly, but the conditions must be perfect for flying precisely. The smallest RC helicopters are the most susceptible to the wind. For this reason, these types of RC helicopters are not the best bet for an inexperienced RC pilot if you plan to fly outside without flight assistance. In this class, you’ll also want to be careful shopping for an RC helicopter because many are built as toys, and you won’t be able to find replacement parts.
Blade® does make a nano RC helicopter with AS3X® and SAFE® to aid in its stability as it flies. We’ll talk more about these assistive technologies in a moment. And keep in mind that the parts are replaceable with Blade helicopters should you tweak a blade, tail rotor, landing gear, or other components.
Flight Assistance for Inexperienced RC Helicopter Pilots
When shopping for your first RC helicopter, you’ll want to look for something that offers flight stability assistance. Many Blade RC helicopters offer SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology from Spektrum™. Spektrum SAFE technology can make an RC aircraft aware of its attitude relative to the ground. This ‘attitude awareness’ makes it possible to program it with different levels of assistance pilots can choose from based on their experience and needs during the flight. SAFE self-levels the helicopter, which is essential when learning to fly. If you’re inexperienced with RC helicopters, you’ll probably find that leaving SAFE on is the best way to go as you get familiar with the flying characteristics of an RC helicopter.
Look for an RC helicopter with both SAFE and AS3X technology to improve your stability. AS3X from Spektrum is part of the SAFE-assisted flight envelope protection system. It is designed to give instantaneous attitude corrections when turbulence haphazardly interrupts how you want to fly.
These two technologies from Spektrum will raise the cost of your RC helicopter, so going with the cheapest model may not be the best choice if you’re looking for the best RC helicopter for an inexperienced RC pilot.
The Best RC Helicopter for Inexperienced RC Pilots
Check out the Blade Nano S3 if you’re interested in a quality-built Nano RC Helicopter with flight assistance. This RC helicopter is “Ready-to-Fly,” which means it has an RC transmitter. It is also available as a “Bind-n-Fly” RC helicopter, meaning you’ll need to have a transmitter to pair with it. It’s a good choice for RC pilots of fixed-wing aircraft looking to expand to RC helicopters because they’ll already have a transmitter.
If you’re looking for a slightly bigger helicopter to gain some stability in flying with a bit of wind, look at Blade’s 330 S, also available as a Ready-to-Fly and Bind-n-Fly model. It is equipped with SAFE and a panic recovery feature should you lose your orientation and need the helicopter to level itself out, making it one of the best RC helicopters.
If you have a local RC club that flies airplanes and helicopters, find out when they meet and talk to them. You’ll make new friends, and they’ll be able to tell you about their favorite models of RC helicopters, too. If you don’t have a local club, you can also try talking to fellow enthusiasts at RC Nation. It’s an online community dedicated to the RC hobby.
Try an RC Simulator
If you’re an inexperienced RC pilot, one of the best investments you can make is in an RC flight simulator. RealFlight Evolution RC Flight Simulator offers more than 300 different RC aircraft to fly, including RC helicopters. Learning to take off, hover, and land an RC helicopter takes practice, and there’s no better way to practice than with a simulator because if you break something, all you have to do is hit the reset button, and you’re ready to take off again! RealFlight Evolution includes some Blade RC helicopters, such as the Blade 150 S with AS3X and SAFE and the Blade Fusion 480 (550) Stretch Helicopter. If you’re reading this blog post because you’re shopping for the best RC helicopter to give an inexperienced RC pilot, an RC simulator is a great place to start when bundled with an InterLink DX controller. It’s all the fun of flying without the risk of breaking something as you practice, and you’ll have no weather restraints on your flying time.