Do you want to fly RC helicopters as effectively as possible? If so then you should be aware of the various controls for the unit. Here are some of the most important issues:

To control RC helicopters, the pitch angle of the unit’s main rotor blades have to be altered about the air that’s flowing over them. This change changes the amount of lift that the blades create. Pitch angle is the known as the Angle of Attack then the blade moves through the air.

There are two main types of RC helicopter control. Those are cyclic and collective. Cyclic controls the direction of the helicopter through the air. That includes left/right and forward/backwards. Then the collective controls control the unit’s altitude, so it moves up/down.

The terms “FP” and “CP” can be somewhat confusing. That’s because both of the terms just refer to the helicopter’s collective pitch control. In a sense, the cyclic pitch control technique is the same as FP and CP.

The Cyclic control alters the pitch angle of the entire rotor disc. That is the “circle” that’s drawn in the air by the spinning blades’ tips. Historically FP/CP helicopters used a flybar to affect the rotor disc’s angle.

The flybar is a short rod. It’s perpendicular to the rotor blades. Each end of the flybar includes an airfoil paddle. The flybar moves in response to the swashplate’s tilting. That’s controlled via the servos. Flybar functions to stabilize the helicopter while it’s in flight.

For several years then there’s NR. Although the flybars are used almost for all helicopters. Flybarless systems are becoming more common. When the flybar turns to respond to the swashplate’s tilting, the paddles’ Angle of Attack changes. That influences how much lift is created, so they rise/fall based on that.

The paddles are always working against each other. For example, if one of them rises the other then is forced in a downward direction, and vice versa also takes place.

The rise/fall of the paddles then stresses the flybar assembly’s movement. The result is the entire rotor disc then tilts the respond to the changes in a lift that happen at the paddles. The helicopter gets unbalanced and then leans to the particular side that’s getting less lift. This changes sideways and a front or back direction.

So the main difference between fixed/collective pitch in remote control helicopters is the collective pitch control. That’s affected by the lift that’s created by the primary blades that work together.

In the case of fixed pitch, the unit’s main blades are fixed to the primary rotor holder. It can’t be pivoted around the longitudinal axis. Altitude must be controlled by the blades’ speed. Faster spinning blades create more lift and the opposite is also true.  

These are some of the biggest issues related to controls for RC helicopters.Make sure to consider them when controlling the unit in order to produce better results.