Twister CPX – 6 Channel RC Helicopter (??E-Sky xxxxxx ??)

Updated 02/01/2011 – Update at the bottom of the article

I recently got my hands on a Twister CPX and I have been slowly trying to come to grips with flying a collective  pitch Heli. The CPX is the much bigger brother of the other heli I have been playing with the Micro Twister Pro which is a fun little 3 channel indoor I/R heli which is cheap, easy to fly and tough as nails when you crash, the Twister CPX is none of these things, though when(if?) I master the CPX I suspect it will offer a whole heap more fun.

The Twister CPX is a RTF (Ready to Fly) package and comes with everything you need to fly (except the skill), the package includes

  • The Twister CPX Helicopter
  • 6 channel 2.4 Ghz computer radio with 4 model memory (more on this later)
  • 1200Mah LiPo battery
  • 12/240 volt charger for battery with power pack.
  • 2 spare canopies
  • A very thin and less than useful manual.

The box and manual claim that the CPX is test flown at the factory and this claim might even be true as the model was certainly better trimmed than a friends E-Flite Blade 400 . Throughout this review I will be using the Blade 400 as a comparison product mainly because I have been sharing airspace with one for the last few weeks and because the Blade 400 is by all accounts an excellent machine.

The Radio

Twister 2.4Ghz 6 Channel Radio

The Twister CPX comes with a Twister branded radio which is one of the better looking ‘Chinese’ radios I have seen, however the manual has no instructions on using the radio which leaves the user the fun and possibly exciting task of working out what settings do what. Now if you already own a 6 channel radio it is pretty easy to sort out what does what and the menu system seems similar to others I have seen, the big problem is that the CPX is marketed as a beginners helicopter (trust me, it isn’t) but supplies no instructions on how to change the settings on your radio, so a beginner is left with no way of knowing how to setup things like exponential and dual rates or anything else without using a lot of trial and error which is not something you want to be doing when playing with an expensive bit of kit . While the radio also has a four model memory this is more than a bit pointless as I am not sure if it is even possible to buy a compatible receiver to put into a different model and there is no mention of whether or not the receiver in the system is compatible with any of the major brands. Putting all this aside the radio seems to be fairly solid in feel and performance, though if I had my choice I would swap the receiver out for one of my Spektrum receivers and use that radio instead. The E-Flite Blade 400 wins points here in that it comes bundled with a Spektrum DX6i, of course it is also nearly $100 more expensive but I think the extra money is justified.

The Battery and Charger

The Twister CPX comes with a fairly puny 1200mAh 3S LiPo battery which give you about 5-8 minutes of flight time, to charge the battery you are given a 12v/240v charger which has fly leads for charging from a 12volt source or a powerpack which converts 204VAC to 12VDC. This unit takes about 40mins to an hour to charge your battery so you had better factor in the purchase of an extra battery when you look at buying this helicopter (the Blade 400 also only has 1 battery but of a slightly better capacity). There is a catch though, when it comes to batteries for the Twister CPX, the battery holder on the CPX will severely limit the size of the battery you can use.  Because of the way the speed controller sits and the shape of the spot for the battery I have so far not been able to find anything bigger than 1300mAh batteries that will fit into the CPX, so this may mean that you will end up buying lots of smaller capacity packs to give you a decent flight time.

(Update 21/12/2010) – Rob from  Wings over the Downs found me an Intellect 1600mAh flight pack which does fit into the CPX, coincidentally Wings over the Downs also sell the Twister CPX from the Australian Arcade Store in Toowoomba. They also are able to source parts for the CPX, which as you will read later on is something I have needed to purchase.

The Manual

The CPX comes with a very slim and less than informative manual but it does have a few good points in that it gives you the hint to move the flybar weights out from the center to make the helicopter less twitchy and it also give an exploded view of the helicopter and a full break down of parts and their numbers.

The Helicopter

Specifications:-

  1. Main Rotor Diameter……….550mm
  2. Tail Rotor Diameter…………142mm
  3. Length…………………………..530mm
  4. Weight…………………………..432g
  5. Main Rotor Drive…………….Brushless Outrunner
  6. Tail Rotor Drive………………Belt Drive
  7. Wood main rotor blades

The CPX is a 6 channel full 3D capable collective pitch helicopter with a 120 degree CCPM and a heading lock/hold gyro . It is powered by a brushless outrunner and utilises a belt drive system to power the tail rotor.

Flight

Ok this section is going to be brief because as yet I do not have the skill to fly the CPX much past a hover and I am still practicing that :-). However I have found that it seems to be very stable and holds its heading really well, I have been able to do all the exercises recommended in the various websites.

Crash Survivability

Well I have had one bingle when I chopped throttle too quickly and the CPX came down a bit fast. The skid on the tail hit first and it did it’s job of stopping the tail rotor from hitting the ground but the main blades flexed and hit the tail boom, this resulted in two damaged blades and a bent tail boom, on further investigation I also found that the feathering shaft had been bent. A quick trip down to the LHS and I had all the parts I needed for the repairs except the feathering shaft. Total cost including shaft was approx $25, so on the whole it doesn’t look like crashes are going to cost the earth, but it was a reminder to not get ahead of myself and try to fly before I can hover. In an effort to improve my response times with less cost I got hold of one of these. I will be doing a review of the Blade  MSR shortly but at the moment I am having too much fun flying it :-)

Update – 02/01/2011 – Ok after a bit of digging I think that the Twister CPX is a rejigged clone of the E-Sky Belt CPX I have ordered a few parts for the E-Sky to see if they match. I am also pretty sure that the Twister 3D X is a rejigged clone of the E-Sky Honey Bee King 4,  I found this early Twister/Honey Bee and I actually managed to get hold of one that someone had in a cupboard, it has all E_Sky branded gear in it and is an exact match for the E_Sky Honey Bee FP. It seems Twister are now being a bit more circumspect with regards to branding but I will hopefully be able to pin down an exact match from the E_Sky range within the next few days and that means access to a bigger range of spare parts suppliers as well as upgrade parts.

Update – 02/02/2011 – Well I have still not been able to pin down an exact match to the twister CPX, it does seem to be a match for Esky products but with slight differences just to make things more annoying. I have since found that the gyro supplied with the heli has now died so another part is required, it seems there is a reason people tell you to stick to a known brand where parts are easily sourced. To make things worse our LHS lost a lot of stock in the Toowoomba floods so parts are harder to find. – See comments section for more infor on spares for the Twister CPX

20 comments to Twister CPX – 6 Channel RC Helicopter (??E-Sky xxxxxx ??)

  1. David says:

    G’day. I’m looking at this heli too as it seems pretty good for the price out of the box. I’m a bit suss concerning parts too and trying to look this up. I’ve found Model Engines who are a wholesaler supplier to have parts so your LHS can order anything from them. http://www.modelengines.com.au

    I wish I could find stuff on ebay for it though. rchobbies have parts I think.
    http://rchobbies.com.au/store/index.php?manufacturers_id=22&sort=4d&filter_id=244

  2. David says:

    Could be these parts too. You got the manual with the parts list and stock codes
    http://rchobbies.com.au/store/index.php?manufacturers_id=22&sort=4d&filter_id=121

  3. David says:

    Radio instructions can be found on the Model Engines site.
    http://www.modelengines.com.au/retail_catalogue_27_page/item/TWISTERCPX.html

    Good review. Like to know how you went using the Esky parts and even just the blades. Those thinks get damaged.

  4. Rick says:

    I to have just brought the Twister cpx, but have found that the computer is setup for an advanced flyer. So I got some1 to lower some of the settings. Being a learner on this type of heli, I can get it off the ground quite easy. Love it, its unreal.

  5. Wyntar says:

    Some of the parts from RCHobbies may work, but they are for the Twister CP which is not a belt drive heli. Model Engines do sell the Heli but from past experience they can be difficult to get parts from via your LHS.

  6. Wyntar says:

    So far Esky parts are hit an miss smaller parts work and I am slowly working on a list to find which parts are swappable. I Have found that the Twister CP Gold parts are fairly interchangable. Still working on the Esjy thing though have been distracted by a few new toys :-)

  7. Rick says:

    Have found out that the Blade SR rotor head is the same as the Twister cpx including the main shaft, not the main gear. Blades are 3mm’s longer and will fit.
    Have just got an aluminum rotor head upgrade that was is for the Blade.

  8. Wyntar says:

    Can confirm that the rotor head assembly from the Blade SR does work, including the feathering shaft (I had trouble sourcing originals from suppliers). Two places to look for prices
    http://www.rchobbies.com.au/store/index.php?cPath=34_488_650
    Lot of upgrade parts here
    http://www.zeejayhobbies.com.au/helicopter-parts/blade-sr/cat_139.html

  9. Keith says:

    Wyntar, have you finished that parts list yet? I’d like to know what other options are available for parts. I heard that this heli is made in the same factory where the Blade SR is made so that explains the rotor head compatibility. Sure would appreciate whatever extra info you may have.

  10. Wyntar says:

    Well I ended up selling the heli to pay for some new toys :-). But I found that a lot of the parts from the SR worked, the biggest damage item being the head and I can confirm it is compatible. I have heard the blades will work as well.
    Overall I would say that if you look at a mix of Blade SR and Twister CP Gold parts you should be able to cover nearly every thing. For the Belt drive components the newer Twister products (3DX) look compatible. Sadly it seems it is harder to get parts here in Oz. So I have switched to buyng HobbyKing 450-600 helis as they are nearly 100% Align compatible

  11. roy says:

    you can get parts at hobby one in brisbane.allso at budget hobbies at 145 redland bay rd.capalaba.ph.no.0738233033.yes i got one to should have watted til xmas and got the blade 450.ok for $225

  12. Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a very well written article. I will make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful information. Thanks for the post. I’ll definitely return.

  13. Angus says:

    Hi I have just taken my new xcp out of the box but cannot get the the tail rotor to action.
    I took it back to the store and the very unhelpful and rude sales guy told me to read the instructions. He demonstrated the thing working but did so very quickly and without showing me what he was doing.
    All other controls seem to work.
    any suggestions?

  14. Wyntar says:

    Do you mean the gyro is not working so the tail bounces from side to side or do you mean the the tail does not respond to input from the radio ?

  15. Jon says:

    -Angus-
    After turning on transmitter, plug in heli battery with helicopter on a flat, stable surface. Do Not Touch Or Move Heli until red ‘set’ light on gyro comes on, this is to let the gyro calibrate & takes about 15-20 seconds. Tail servo may twitch while this is happening and a final bigger twitch when set light comes on.
    Hope this helps!! :)
    Jon

  16. neil beveridge says:

    Hey guys,

    Hoping you could help i have a cpx. After start up i test all the servos and all but the tail rotor work. I will some times get it to work then others it won’t. dose any one have any idea what this may be. Also when it is operting it will not stop the chopper from spinning out of control (evan on max trim) could some one please help me out as it has damaged 3 sets of main blade so far.

    thanks

  17. william says:

    hi there i have had my cpx for some time it goes very well but i need a diagram of the receiver and were all the wires go on it to be able to fly my cpx again as my little sister got hold of it and pulled all the wires off the receiver i have looked on the net everywhere and had no luck can anyone help me out?

  18. matt says:

    -Neil-

    I have the same problem as you.. both with it not working with radio input (most of the time it does work) and then the same problem with max trim on and it still moves in one direction..

    can anyone help us out? cheeeers!

  19. Jason says:

    Hi, i have found a supplier. They are more than welcome to order any part needed for the CPX. I have just ordered a full metal upgrade for the CPX full ROTOR assy and tail upgrade and carbon fibre blades etc. Talk to John in ORANGE NSW on 02-63620331, and they * the Wholesale supplier will even Air bag the parts to save time, then the supplier *JOHN* will post the etc. Not sure if the Wholesaler will ship direct or not still waiting on them to confirm, i will update as soon as i get an answer. Hope this will help a few of you. This heli is great for learning before you leap to the Blade 400, 500 etc. Have a great XMAS all of you. I know i will now i have some parts coming via air freight

  20. ed959 says:

    yeah my cpx just goes round in circles too,,the back tail does not work at all,,the startup goes through all the wright things,,but u just cant fly it until the trim can be ajusted,,thy say it is ready to fly,,but it is not,,have wacthed all the videos on it before buying and i think it is a good helicopter,,i am pretty good at the smaller 3 channel so i decided to go futher,,just need practice with a helicopter that is working as it should,,cheers on all the info on sites like this it helps alot eh,,,

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