Firefox Pixy 100 Heli


I've been playing around with this little 13-inch Firefox Pixy 100 Heli as an indoor winter toy:

Firefox Pixy 100 Helicopter Kit w/Brushless Motor/ESC/4Servos

I got it on one of HeliDirect's "Deal of the Day" offers (11/7/2007) for $134.99 (regular $187.99). On 12/29/2007 they had it on special for $159.95. BP Hobbies also carries the heli and parts.

It's really not a beginners heli; I had to tweak around with it a good deal to get it to fly well. The ELE speed controller that came with it had a tendency to glitch (probably just a bad unit). The Phoenix 10 ESC I ended up with works well, but cost me another $50.

It has a belt-driven tail, which is cool in a heli this small. I couldn't get the stock setup of having the tail servo in the body to work very well. Changing it to a boom-mounted tail servo works much better; they have a mounting kit (FF-5005) for it. The mounting is made for one of their ELE 3.7g servos, but I put in a Futaba S3114 servo to get a little better performance. I had to trim the mount a bit to get it to work with the larger servo.

There's a Gaui MiniZoom heli that's the same size that looks like better-quality machine, but it costs a lot more (and is heavier).

I'm using wooden blades instead of the stock plastic blades. The rubber shock absorbers on the landing skids are good to have. Here are the other electronics I'm using with heli:

MegaPower 850mAh 15C 7.4V Li-Po batteries $14.99
HDX Full Range 6CH Digital Single Conversion DSP Receiver 72mHz $17.95
Telebee/Zoom Sub-Micro 6g Head Lock Gyro $59.00

Here are rcgroups forums on these little helis:

Mini-Zoom/EP100/Pixie Zap Index - Links and Technical Information
EP-100 & EP-200 Build/Review (main thread)

This post recommending that "the tail rotor cross shaft needs to be loctited or it tends to unscrew itself" was one that I should have paid more attention to. The second time I spun it up one of the tail rotors flew off because it wasn't tightened properly at the factory. They've held on well since I tightened and loctited them.

At this point the heli's responsiveness is "mushier" then I'd like. It's OK for indoor flying in small spaces, but when it gets some speed it can be slow to change direction. Playing around with the servos and the head may improve it.

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ET Heli