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RC Helicopter: the Fixed and Collective Pitches

By Javed Khan Subscribe to RSS | March 16th 2012 | Views:
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More and more toy enthusiasts and some curious gamers are increasingly becoming attracted to the world of RC helicopter flying in the recent years. This however, does not change the fact that many of the newbies, beginners, and even some of the old timers are still puzzled about what a ‘fixed pitch’ or ‘collective pitch’ is with regards to these marvelous helicopter toys. This article aims to enlighten toy enthusiasts, hobbyists, and plain, old, curious people as to what the difference between collective and fixed pitches really are.

In order to understand how the ‘collective’ and ‘fixed’ pitch differs from one another, we must first tackle and understand the meaning of the word ‘pitch’. In terms of helicopters, the word ‘pitch’ simply means the angle of the main rotor blade. In general, the measurement of the ‘pitch’ angle is done in relation to the horizontal plane, or the surface plane. This is important to know because helicopters are able to lift their bodies from the ground by rotating their rotors through the air, and the optimum angle of the pitch will give the optimum lift of the helicopter; with a fixed pitch, the helicopter’s rotor blades are able to spin faster and generate more ability to lift itself and help the helicopter ascend, because its main rotor blades are fixed in place. On the other hand, a helicopter with a collective pitch, adds the factor of a blade pitch in the lift generating equation, and this means that with this kind of pitch, the lift of the helicopter can be changed in relation to the angle at which the main rotor blade is positioned. To put it in simple terms, collective pitch helicopters are able to alter the lift generated by changing the pitch while the rotor is still rotating and vice versa.

While it is true that collective pitch RC helicopter is considered to be more responsive, swift, and smoother to fly, this type of toy helicopters is generally harder to maneuver. They also require a more complicated transmitter than the helicopters with fixed pitch, and also cost more than the fixed pitch RC helicopter. Aside from all of these, collective pitch RC helicopter is also made up of more moving parts, which require more care and maintenance, because they are very prone to breakage.

Fixed pitch helicopters on the other hand, has fewer moving parts and are generally very highly recommended for newbies and beginners, because this type of RC helicopter requires lesser maintenance than its more costly counterpart. Fixed pitch helicopters are also generally easier to fly (however, this claim is up for debate, especially to seasoned RC pilots), and usually comes with a radio transmitter. While it is true that the fixed pitch type of RC helicopter is generally easy to learn, operate, and maneuver, if you are serious in getting in to RC flying as a hobby, then a big investment in a collective pitch helicopter will surely be worth your money and your while.

Javed Khan - About Author:
Hobby-eStore has a wide selection of rc cars any type of rc helicopter. Learn more at http://www.hobby-estore.com

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