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  1. #1

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    HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    I just picked up my new HeliHobby MX400 CCPM heli. Ill be posting some detailed pics tonight so you guys can check it out. Im not giving any promises, but perhaps a build thread is in the works. (taking deep breath, hair raising up on back thinking about it) [:'(]

    The MX400 is alot like the Trex. Ill have to set them down side by side and figure out what all the differences are. There is ALOT of metal on this bird. GEORGEOUS aluminum frame, complete with laser etched serial #'s. Nice gold anodized tail boom.

    The head is super smooth, and fit and finish is tight and clean. I like that they got smart and made the canopy, blades, paddles, tail blades, fins, and skids ALL white...., this way you can airbrush it how you want it.....MWUHAHAHAHAH.....mines gonna have a *itchin paint job complete with bright shiny clear coat.[>:]

    So far I am impressed with it. Only time will tell if it will keep up with the Trex. Ill be sure to post my opinions of it once I get it all built.

    Im planning on using the following equipment.

    Futaba GY240 or 401 gyro
    E-flite 75 servos
    Futaba 9ch PCM1024 synth RX - I plan on later adding a nice bell 222 fuselage with retracts and running lights, and perhaps some other scale details that I will need the 9ch's for.
    Brushless motor (undecided as of yet...Im going top of the line all the way with this one....no expense spared, so thinking AXI or Hacker. I want it to be the hottest thing on two blades.)
    Big FAT 35A brushless speed controller.

    Later I plan on upgrading the entire head to all aluminum, including some custom parts that Im going to start milling this weekend in the shop. Change the frame to carbon fiber....of course carbon blades, paddles, and tail blades.

    Estimated completion date is late December. Hey....give me a break....this stuff is expensive.
    I must have lost my mind. ....

    Pics coming tonight as soon as I can get to my camera.

  2. #2

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Great.
    isnt the align 420lf better than the hackers?
    also you have to tell me where u got (get) your carbon tail blades.. im looking for some but they are all for 30 sized nitros
    Barbarian for life.
    Stuff happens then you die.

  3. #3

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    I havent gotten the carbon stuff yet. I think helihobby.com has the carbon tail fins though. Not positive yet, but I think the Trex blades will fit too.

    Is the Align motor better than the Hackers or AXI's? If it is I might have to go that route.

  4. #4
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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Our store got one today, it's nice looking as you said davison. It's extremely light for all the metal it's made of. I had planned on getting the Shogun400 but after seeing this thing in our store, I'm going to have to get this little thing. I already have a 480 brushless and 40amp esc from an airplane of mine. I might gut the plane and put all the electronics from it into the heli when I do get it. Towerhobbies sells a lot of parts for this little heli to so parts won't be hard to find.
    What goes up must come down, and that is the Landing Gear!

  5. #5

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Isn't it just a re-badged X-400? If so, the resemblance to the t-rex is because it was developed by one of the core guys who made the T-rex.

    I agree it is a nice helicopter, and is likely to be my next CCPM micro. The beauty about it, is that the upgrades are cheap as dirt for it compared to other helicopters, no doubt due to pushes from the manufacturers. Even the kits (sub $100) are really cheap.
    Daniel
    True Northern Hobbies, Inc.

  6. #6

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Hey ,Bryan, got to fondle one on thursday. And it is a revamped ArkX400, I think the main improvement they went to the CCPM which got rid of the slop in the controls. I do like the metal frame. It should be a great machine,they say it's not as responsive on the cyclic . And not as 3d capable as the Trex. It isn't a stretch version either, but the parts should be as inexpensive as the Trex. I have the align 420 3200kv motor and it does fine but I am going with the Nue 1105 3500kv or the Mega 16/15/3 next using the Align 35 amp controller with a governer. I got myCDE TrexXL with 420 kv motor and speed control fo r$250.00. The Mega or the Nue motor sells for around $90.00. Good luck with it and let me know if you need any help. And thanks for finding a potential tail rotor problem the other night . Might just have cost some pain and suffering. If you know what I mean. Bill

  7. #7

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Well, here are some pictures. More coming.

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  8. #8

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Ok, here are some pics of the canopy and skids all painted up. It looks dark in the pics, but it is quite bright. Its a chameleon paint. Transforms from blue, to purple, to red depending on how the light hits it. Just shooting the clear coats now to get it super shiny.

    Its a 6 coat process for the paint. 3 base coats, and 3 mid-color coats. Its got a metallic flake in it also. Then of course the clear coat.

    Bill, the head seems REALLY nice. Theres no slop in it. Its really smooth and rigid. Your probably right about the cyclic not being as responsive as the T-rex, but thats ok, I could use the softened responses.

    Bill, Im thinking of starting a Demonstration/Stunt Team for flying demo's at the Hobby Shops around here. If your interested, I'd like to count you as a team member.


    Anyhow heres the pics
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  9. #9

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Cool looking paint job Bryan, looks mean[>:] I know your itching to get it ready. I think it will be an awesome machine. I should have my aluminum tail assembly in Monday. I also can't wait till the bell/hiller system comes in for the blade. I'm pretty sure we can do some awesome stuff in the gym with them. It's getting tougher for me to get to P'cola now, but let me know via e-mail so I can schedule some time for some demo flying . that would be cool. See ya. Bill

  10. #10

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    bdavison
    you are the reason i got XRB lama and i love it "very good review". hope the mx400 is as easy as XRB.
    I saw the mx400 at LHS and i love the way it looks, now i am waiting for your review for that one.

    is it stable like the XRB or there is nothing as stable?


  11. #11

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Oh, believe me.....The MX400 will not be anywhere near as stable as the XRB.
    The MX400 is a full blown heli...no forgiveness there. Ive flown Bill's T-Rex, and the MX400 is supposed to be pretty close. You will need some serious skills before you attempt to fly this thing. They are extremely fast, extremely agile helicopters. Its like flying a big high performance nitro bird. If you've never flown a heli before...Id say you're average lifespan is about 3 seconds with a Trex or MX400 before its doing the dead chicken and spraying splinters all over the place.

    The other problem is by the time you get finished building one of these you've got around $600-$1000 in the helicopter.
    So while you didnt mind knocking the XRB around and busting foam blades, with these helicopters crashing is NOT an option.
    They are spinning 24-30 inches of wood, fiberglass, or carbon fiber blades at rpms of around 2200RPM. If you hit yourself with a XRB, it would sting, maybe cut you, but most likely not be lethal. With the MX400 play time is definatly over with these. They are lethal if misused. If I remember correctly, the blade tip speed is pretty close to 200mph.

    As far as other helis that are as stable as the XRB....well there are other "X-rotation" helis that fly like the XRB.
    The Megatech Housefly, The E-flite BladeCX,....E-sky makes one that you can get from balsapr.com, but its ugly as poo in my opinion, its well made and flys really good though.

    If your looking to move up to a single rotor head machine. Id have to say the BladeCP is a good place to look. Ive been really impressed with that little heli. Its the perfect transition machine for people wanting to increase their skills and move from the trainers like the XRB to the faster helis like the T-rex. Its ideal for this because of a few reasons.
    Its low cost, and parts are cheap. Always a plus when your learning how to fly.
    Its got GREAT manufacturer support. A warrenty program unheard of with models is included with the Blade. Which will save you a bunch of trouble should you have problems. E-flite is rapidly releasing upgrades to the Blade which not only make it fly better, but improve its performance and agility. The heli is really well thought out. They painted the canopy bright yellow to improve visability, included a really well written manual, its just all around a really good transisition heli.

    I started with the XRB learning the basic stick movements and how not to get mixed up on them. And learning general all around flying. I moved up to the Blade to learn collective pitch and how to fly a single rotor head heli, and learn inverted maneuvers and fast forward flight. Now Im finally ready to learn the 3D stuff and go fly the "big helis", so I bought the MX400.

    So whats after the MX400???? Who knows

    Right now my plan is to learn to fly the 3D manuvers well enough to become a "sport" level pilot. Im not really interested in becoming a master or a competitive flyer. Just want to be able to fly around and do maneuvers confidently without fighting to keep it flying. Once I accomplish this, I really like scale helicopters, so I think I will go that route. Perhaps build a nice scale bell 222 or hughes 500MD with lights, retracts, maybe even a detailed cockpit or something.


    Hey bill,
    I went out to the local flying field this weekend with Pop. He wanted to maiden that little FleaFly that he built. One of the local slimer flyers was out there with a Raptor .60 got to see him do some 3D type stuff with it. Pretty cool.

  12. #12

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    i was going to get the E-flight blade first as my first heli but my LHS and you guys recomended the XRB, i am soooooo glad i listened.
    he was selling the blade for $220 which is $100 less than the xrb.

    i just do not want to buy another RTF heli with a radio "i got toooooo many radio's"

    right now i can fly the xrb good with the foam blades but not with the CF blades "unstable", do you think i can handle the E-flight blade or do i need to master the CF blades on my xrb first.

    if only they can make xrb like outdoor heli with the same stability.

    good luck with the mx400 and thanks for the fast reply.


  13. #13

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Yeah, the carbon fiber blades actually make the XRB a tad on the unstable side. It is good practice though.
    If you can hover the XRB tail in, nose in, and right or left side in, and fly figure 8's in both forward and reverse flight, and do piroettes without difficulty....your ready to move up.

    If you move up to a Blade, take the manual, and read it front to back. FOLLOW all the instructions on how to adjust everything. They tell you its set up from the factory....dont believe it. What they should say is its "flyable" from the factory....its far from set properly. Of course you probably noticed that with the XRB too. The more precise you get all the adjustments the better it will fly. Look up Radd's flying lessons, and follow them EXACTLY. Bear in mind too that you cant let go of the sticks with the Blade. You will have to fly it all the time.

    Dont think its gonna be easy. It will be difficult, but the stuff you learned on the XRB will help ALOT. The first thing you will notice is that it takes less stick movement to get it to move, and that you now will have to steer the tail too, unlike the XRB that would hold the tail in one place.


  14. #14

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    OH yeah....one more thing.

    If you dont want to get a blade as a ARF kit with the radio, you can order the E-sky Carbooon CP heli from balsapr.com
    Its a barebones kit already assembled. Just add your own parts. It flys EXACTLY like the E-flite Blade, and all the parts are interchangeable.

    It's gonna cost you more in the long run than the E-flite Blade though, so your actually better off buying a Blade, and just having another tx.

    Carbooon Kit w/9T motor = $79.00
    4-in-1 = $67.00
    3 servos = $41.97 ($13.99 each for the E-flite S75's)
    1250mah 3cell lipo = $47.00

    Total = 234.97

    E-flite Blade ARF = $219





  15. #15

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    "fly figure 8's in both forward and reverse flight"
    no way, i guess i am not ready yet, i had the xrb for about a month now, i'll wait another month before i get the blade.

    i love the xrb for indoor, i need outdoor heli. can i fly the blade outdoor or is it too small.

  16. #16
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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    backward flight!!! AHHHH that's my worst nightmare, I HATE flying backwards so afraid of the tail digging in...[X(]. just how stable is the XRB? I keep hearing very stable but just how? how long can you fly it hands off set up right?
    www.ushobbysupply.com - your #4 HQ!
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  17. #17
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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Bdavision


    I was wondering if you could post some of your thoughts on trouble spots if any on the mx400, as far as building troubles, weak spots or any other things you might know. And also good things about this heli. And maybe some flight characteristics if you have flown it yet. I have been interested in advancing to a bigger electric heli, but have not completely made up my mind yet, there are about 3 or 4 out there i have my eye on. I haven't seen much flight data on this heli yet though. i appreciate any info.
    Enjoy what you have, because it might not last long

  18. #18

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    thecheatscalc
    it's very very stable, 20-30 sec hands off.
    some time i hover it and put the radio down to light a cigarette, the XRB is all about hovering but it is not that good in forward flight, keeps drifting to the left in forward motion "not straight flight"
    the XRB is your bedroom kind of heli.

  19. #19

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Jet Jaguar,

    So far everything seems well built, and designed really good.

    There are a few issues that are addressed in an addendum sheet that comes with the instructions, but nothing major. Most are just small things like filing a control horn so that it doesnt rub, or adding locktite to specific screws that may loosen with vibration during flight. Most of these are issues that come not only with the MX400, but many other helis too, and are common knowledge to most experienced heli pilots.

    The only trouble Ive had so far is installing the servos. There is VERY little room to work in, and the little nuts that you mount the servos with can be really difficult to get into place. Its hard to get a pair of pliers up inside the frame to hold them while you screw the screws in. Use the E-flite S75 servos. They fit perfectly. Nice and snug, plus the stats on the S75's meet or exceed the manufacturers recommendations for the servos.

    Since the heli comes pre-constructed (90%), I dont really trust some child laborer in China to make sure all the screws are tight. Go over every screw and make sure its tight, just as a safety precaution. You sure dont want anything on this heli to come apart in flight.

    Really the only thing you have to do is just install the boom braces, the horizontal fin, the pushrods, servos and avionics, balance and mount the blades, and either use the included decals or paint it up, and you are pretty much ready to go.

    Everything on the heli seems really tight and smooth. There isn't any slop in the ailerons or the collective. The elevator has a little, but I think it can be easily fixed by tightening up the control bars.

    The manual recommends mounting the gyro directly beneath the main shaft, but Im not too keen on that idea. I think the gyro is better placed just above the tail boom on the rear of the frame. If mounted under the main shaft, its going to be difficult to adjust the pots or switches, plus it places all the electronics near the motor and ESC which could result in unwanted interference.

    Ill be sure to post my opinions once I get to fly it. It might be a while....got to save up some money for the electronics.

  20. #20

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    bdavison
    tower hobbies got that deal you might like

    http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...1p?&I=LZ0101**

    for the package that includes everything for the mx400 $497 - 20 = $477

    includes Radio: 6-channel helicopter (FUTK60**)
    Servos: 4 micro size
    Gyro: FUTM0809
    Electric Motor: Brushless, HMXG1001
    Battery: Lithium polymer 11.1V, GPMP0823
    Charger: GPMM3010

    and the heli, may be you can call them and get every thing without the heli for $380. check it out

  21. #21
    oppie's Avatar
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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread


    [quote]ORIGINAL: bdavison

    Ok, here are some pics of the canopy and skids all painted up. It looks dark in the pics, but it is quite bright. Its a chameleon paint. Transforms from blue, to purple, to red depending on how the light hits it. Just shooting the clear coats now to get it super shiny.

    Its a 6 coat process for the paint. 3 base coats, and 3 mid-color coats. Its got a metallic flake in it also. Then of course the clear coat.


    Bryan is your shop really that neat and clean?

    WOW

    Don, Waco Brotherhood #194

  22. #22

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    I guess I am pretty lucky. There is a 48'x26' workshop behind the house for the really big stuff, and I also have a nice work area in my bedroom. Ive got a pretty nice airbrush set-up, including a hepa filter that will filter out dust and fumes. I can actually airbrush stuff inside my bedroom, without passing out from the fumes. It also helps to reduce dust.

    The chameleon paint is AWESOME. The more coats you use, the better it gets. Your starting with almost a flat black undercoat, with just a little purple candy in it. Completely coat the canopy. Then once it dries, start applying the cameleon candy. The flake chips are actually crystals that refract light into different colors when it hits it at an angle. I spray at least 3 coats of this stuff, with it drying inbetween coats. Then finally shoot about 3-4 coats of clear coat over it to give it that "showroom shine"

    Ive never painted any model aircraft with the stuff before, so this is kinda a new experience. But I have to say...I took the heli outside, and kind of "flew" it around with my hands and watching that super shiny canopy change colors as it moved around looked freakin awesome.

    The paint is called "Mirage". I think you can buy it in a can too, but be careful with the can stuff, I dont know if it will eat the canopies

  23. #23

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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Here are some more pics of the canopy. This is after about 2 of the 4 planned clear coats. You can see its starting to get shiny.

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  24. #24
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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    preciate the info, and i'm curious to see how the ccpm feels on this heli. good luck, and please keep us informed.
    Enjoy what you have, because it might not last long

  25. #25
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    RE: HeliMax MX400 CCPM heli "build" thread

    Sweet heli, davison.

    I almost bought one, but decided to go with the Trex450xl.[8D]
    3D heli is outta control, gotta love it.
    Life Rotors On!!!


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