Back in 1987 I had my first encounter with a radio controlled plane. Since then I have been hooked on all things radio controlled and although I have dabbled in many various types of RC vehicles over the years, the airplane has always been my go to. Perhaps its nostalgia, or perhaps its the speed and the way they cut through the sky. But there comes a time when you want to explore things in a little more depth and so recently I turned my hand back to the radio controlled helicopter.
Fast forward to 2019 going in to 2020 and the number of helicopters available has increased more than my waistline – so I thought I’d properly commit to helicopters and I went out and bought two of varying costs. Choosing the right models for me wasn’t too tricky as I wanted a range that would suit for different occasions. I also wanted at least one that was a fairly budget model so I could get my 9 year old out with me and not be too concerned if he flew it directly in to a tree. I found a handy buyers guide showing these RC helicopters and then I headed to my local flying club to see if anyone had any advice.
After a fairly lengthy chat with a fellow named David and having done a fair bit of research myself, I decided to opt for a WL V912 4 channel RC chopper as my main plaything. The kids toy was the the Syma S107 which was around £15 – an absolute bargain!
Why I fell In Love With The RC Helicopter
I started off with the Syma as I felt I needed a little warm up myself. After quickly draining the battery I swapped it out for my V912 and the difference was pretty stark. It had a beefy motor that powered the chopper but what kept me there for a good hour (apart from multiple batteries) was the steep learning curve that it challenged me with. The helicopter has a completely different control system to that of a plane and the skill levels required to fly it well are huge. As someone who is very competent at flying an RC plane and as someone that has dabbled with RC helicopters in the past, there was a very large degree of learning for me to undertake – and that is what I absolutely loved.
I felt like I was that 8 year old again having to take time to master the controls and the concepts of flight. Drones are fun, but the required skill level of flying them is not too demanding. Helicopters are a completely different ball game and the weather conditions really come in to play too.
Having now spent a good 4 weekends out with both helicopters I haven’t touched my planes and have a quiet addiction to my choppers. The little one is also loving his chopper and has even had a go with my more expensive model. For both of us the fun has been top class and the learning curve has also been challenging but rewarding.
I’m not saying I will be replacing my RC planes with RC helicopters but there is certainly now room for both in my life – and the latter has given the former a new lease of life as it has rejuvenated me and my passion for all things radio controlled is now burning hotter than ever!