Fly-Sky Configuration
and Helicopter Setup Manual

SW(B) Idle Up / 3D Mode

New hobbyists are intimidated by this control. And for good reason, using the stock Idle-Up Throttle and Pitch settings, the motor is going to jump into high speed. The pitch will jump to the location specified by the Idle Up (ID) pitch curve for that throttle location. The result can be a dramatic reaction by the helicopter.

It is not advisable to start the helicopter in 3D (Idle-Up) mode when first taking it to the field. If you watch a Pro, he will first spin up under normal mode and lift the helicopter into a low hover, sit it back down, and then switch to one of his 3D modes. The reason he (or she) does this is for safety. It is a quick check to make sure the helicopter is flight worthy before asking it to switch into an extreme operational mode.

Starting in Idle-Up mode is hard on the entire drive train, the motor, and the ESC. Consider the head will instantly accelerate to 85% or higher of the total motor speed. The blades will fold back in their grips during acceleration and may cause an out of balance condition further subjecting your model to extreme stress. The blades will eventually return to the correct position due to centrifugal force.

To reduce stress on the drive train, you can start the Helicopter in normal mode, bring the speed of the head up slowly to mid point and then toggle the SW-B switch (Idle-Up). Before attempting this, you should verify your NORM pitch and ID pitch settings are not too far off at mid stick. To test the difference, set the Throttle Cut switch (SW-A) to turn off power to the motor. Place the throttle stick to mid stick, and toggle the Idle-Up switch (SW-B) several times observing the amount of pitch change. There should be little difference in swashplate movement. The overall amount of pitch should be low. Keep in mind that the Idle-Up throttle speed is much higher, so the amount of thrust produced with this small pitch angle is magnified in comparison to the lower speed of the normal switch setting.

If you are intent on starting the helicopter in 3D (Idle-Up) mode, then use the Throttle Cut SW-A switch to prevent the motor from turning (switch towards you). Turn on the Helicopter power, set the throttle stick to just below mid point (slight negative pitch), and then flip the SW-A switch (Throttle Cut) to normal. This procedure will place the blade pitch to just below zero before power is applied. The slight negative pitch pushes the model into the landing skids sticking it to the ground thereby reducing the amount of tail spin on start-up.

To minimize the stress of start-up in either Normal or Idle-Up mode, you should use an ESC that supports a slow start-up feature. The Align and Castle Creations ESC models use a very slow ramp feature to virtually eliminate the start-up stress on both the mechanical and electronic components. If you have one of these advanced ESC models, you can configure the ESC to lock out this slow start-up mode once the motor reaches operating speed. The lockout prevents the ESC from accidentally resetting into slow start-up during flight in case there is an electronic glitch or the Throttle-Cut was applied as part of a stunt. If your ESC does not have the ability to lockout this setting, then research how long the throttle can be set to zero before ESC re-arms the slow-start function. This will also be important information to know if you practice “auto-rotation” landings, as using throttle kill too long may commit you to an under-powered landing.

*Note – some ESC manufacturers have a safety feature built in that will prevent the motor from starting in 3D mode.

*Safety Note – NEVER stand close to a helicopter during motor start up in Normal or 3D mode.

Note: The Norm / Idle Up switch simply swaps settings between the available throttle and pitch curves. The more exact meaning of this switch is Throttle-Pitch-Curve #1 and Throttle-Pitch-Curve #2. With that in mind, you can program each set of curves, and test each in the field to experiment with how each curve behaves. For example, you can set both NOR and ID pitch curves to be the same, and just change the ID throttle curve to be slightly different than the NOR throttle curve. Switching SW-B allows you to experiment with the different settings. This is an excellent way to compare potential new curves, and choose which values work best for your model and your skill level.

The T6 configuration uses a graphical representation for Throttle and Pitch curves. The Throttle curve graph can be confusing. EP0 represents bottom left stick, and EP4 represents full top throttle stick.

Fig 20

The vertical line is the throttle stick of the radio. Move the stick and watch the vertical line move across the graph. In the curve graphs above, the mid point throttle is 87% for both Normal mode and Idle Up mode (Fig. 20). With the curves setup this way, the SW(B) switch will not have a dramatic affect when toggles at throttle mid point.

*Note – Some pilots recommend a [NOR] throttle curve as 0,70,80,90,100 to reduce tail spin as you lower the throttle stick. I know of pilots that use a straight curve with all points set to 100%. DO NOT use these high throttle settings until after you have setup the tail servo and gyro.

*Safety Note – Whatever throttle settings you use, Never connect power to the helicopter without the transmitter powered on, and the Throttle Cut switch set to on. When you are ready to fly, stand back from the helicopter, and in NOR mode left stick is all the way down, or if in ID mode set the left stick to mid point. Switch the throttle cut switch to off. The ESC start mode (Very Soft) will gently spin up the motor.

Now that the Throttle settings match, let us turn to the Pitch curves and alter them to match at mid point throttle.

Fig 21

The NOR (Normal) pitch curve (Fig. 21) has been altered so that it maintains 50% or zero pitch all the way up to mid throttle. EP2 on both NOR and ID modes are the same. This coupled with the altered throttle curves will provide a smooth transition from Normal to 3D modes at mid stick.

*Note – with these adjustments, the motor will be running at a very high speed in both normal and 3D modes. This can be intimidating at first. With the higher speed, the helicopter will react to pitch input with more response.

*Note – The NOR pitch curve above is only an example of matching the mid point throttle between normal and 3D modes. Typically the NOR curve should provide some negative pitch below mid throttle. The negative pitch has several advantages. It will keep the tail from spinning too much on start-up because of the down force on the landing skids, and there will be occasions when negative pitch will assist the pilot flying in windy conditions by allowing the pilot to counter up drafts.

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