The Kyosho Caliber 30 ARF arrives in a beautiful box printed in 4 color process on all sides. It has a nifty little carrying handle on the top of it so you can use it later for transport. After unpacking everything and verifying all parts were present and accounted for I was ready to begin what was about to be a very short assembly process.
As noted above in the introduction the Caliber 30 comes either with or without the OS 32 SX-H. The instruction manual provides clear instructions for mounting the motor but since I had chosen the ARF with the motor installed, this step was skipped. The manual was well done and provided line drawing illustrations for each step in the short assembly process. You can read the manual by clicking the pdf icon here >>
The chassis, boom/tail rotor, and main rotor head are pre assembled at the factory. First I installed the tail boom per the instructions ensuring that the twist of the belt matched that illustrated in the manual. Next the boom supports are installed using the supplied screws.
The main blades are installed next. I was advised by my experts that as a safety measure I needed to pull the blade grips off and glue them back on with CA and the supplied screws. First I marked the outline of the blade grip on the blades using a marker. I pulled the grips off and used an x-acto blade to remove the plastic inside the markings. Next I put some CA on both sides of the blade where the wood was now exposed and then CA glued the grips on and screwed them onto the blades tightly. The last step was balancing the blades. For this I used a Kyosho Main Rotor Blade Balancer. The balancer is easy to use and can detect very small balance changes. Using some Helimax Red Tracking tape I added some to the lighter blade to achieve perfect balance. I suggest you never skip this step.
The tail rotor blades are installed by simply screwing them into their grips with the supplied screws making sure to not overtighten. I checked both the tail rotor and main rotor blades at this time to ensure they could move freely.
Next, I trimmed out the portions of the canopy using some lexan cutting scissors. I cut a hole in the top for the hex starter access. I cleared out the front so there was engine access to get a glow plug igniter on the motor plus to help cool the engine. The muffler cutout is done at the factory saving time in the trimming process. I also cut away some of the canopy near the main rotor head to allow for ample clearance.
The decals were applied to the canopy. Worth noting is that on the first go round I tried to install the black decals which make up the windshield on the canopy. Since the canopy is a compound curve this is not easy but I used a heat gun to gently heat the decal where it was wrinkling and it took them all out quickly and almost flawlessly. If you want your windshield to come out nice you must use some technique like this or the decals will bunch up and wrinkle.