Head assembly

Ahhh, the head assembly... So scary to people not used to get their hands dirty, yet it is so simple.

This whole assembly is designed like this:

The main shaft has the following components from top to bottom:

- Aluminum head (which has the flybar and blade grips on it)
- Washout base
- Swash plate
- Top frame bearing
- Middle frame bearing
- 2x Bearing shim (Pending confirmation from Blade)
- One way bearing and hub (OWB)
- Main gear
- One way bearing shaft shim
- Tail gear
- One way bearing shaft (BLH1649)
- Bottom frame bearing

We'll assume that the complete head assembly is dismantled before you put it together.

Here's the step by step in putting it together.

First thing we want to do is assemble the gears. It consists of 3 main parts. The tail gear, the one way bearing and the main gear.

maingears

Before putting this together, we need to do a little trick to the main gear (info from ror1, helifreak)

Put the screws for the one way bearing in the main gear tight and then remove them. By hand, clear the chipped white plastic material away from screw holes using a drill bit to counter bore the holes. Just turn drill bit by hand.

Put the one way bearing tube through the tail gear (the one with no screw holes) like the picture. Install the spacer on the tube. Insert the main gear on top of the tail gear. Insert the one way bearing and hub on top of the main gear. Secure the screws.

Make sure the bearings are in place and well lubricated in the frame. I use silicon grease on them (I use what i had for my RC car, Traxxas silicon grease, works great). The middle bearing has 2 small washers on top of it (between bearing and frame). This information is pending confirmation from Blade.

Make sure the tail gear has the nut inserted in it's placeholder. (nylon facing outside) Slide the main gear assembly in the frame from the side, with the tail gear on bottom. Align it so the hole in the gear is lined up with the bearings.

Then we need to install the main shaft. Lubricate the main shaft using the same silicon grease. The main shaft gets inserted in the middle of the main frame, inside the bearings. The main shaft has a "lip" which is off center, separating it in 2 sections, a short and a longer one. the longer one goes down, short on top. Slowly insert the main shaft in the bearing, all the way down. Align the screw on the main shaft with the hole in the main gear. Insert the shaft screw in the hole and secure it. Be careful not tu push the screw too far as it will cause the nut to come out of the placeholder and it's rather tricky to put back in it's spot without taking the gear out. Make sure the screw is tight, but don't over tighten. Make sure the screw is past the nylon nut on the other side.

Next to go on is the swash plate. Lubricate the whole center part of the swash with silicon grease (I use Traxxas silicon grease TRA1647 or Traxxas White lithium grease TRA5148, these are leftovers from my RC car days). Insert it from the top of the main shaft. Gently push away the anti-rotation bracket enough to put the swash plate pin in it.

Take the washout base, and install the control arms (BLH1631). There's a small brass washer that goes between the control arms and the washout base. If you look at the washout base, the ball link on the control arm goes on the opposite side of the hole on the base, with the link going down. (refer to picture for detail). Lubricate the washout base center (where the shaft goes). Insert the washout base on the main shaft, and connect the links to the swash plate.

You can then insert the head on the main shaft. Be careful to put the head pins in the washout base's grooves. Align the head hole with the shaft hole. Insert the screw and secure nut on the other side. Make them tight, but again, don't over tighten. Make sure the screw is past the nylon nut.

Next to go on would be the flybar unit.

Start by inserting the flybar links (#4) on the balls (metal part with a ball in the center). Then take one of the flybar cage end and insert a bearing in it. Lubricate it. Put some thread lock on the screws and secure the flybar cage balls to one of the ends. Insert the flybar itself (very long rod with threaded ends) in the bearing. Take one of the very small brass washer and insert it on the flybar, with the extruded side towards the bearing. Set this unit aside for now, we need to assemble the seesaw on the head before we continue.

 

Take the seesaw (Plastic or aluminum tube with 2 ball link joints on it) and insert it inside the head. It goes perpendicular to the blade grips. Once centered, line up the holes, insert the bearings in the head and secure the screws. If you have the aluminum seesaw, put some thread lock on it. No need if you have the plastic one. Install the balls on the seesaw ball holders. Take the flybar cage unit we assembled earlier and insert the flybar in the seesaw (make sure the brass washer is still there. It goes between the seesaw and the bearing). Make sure the flybar cage end is placed so the middle is high, and the ends are lower. Push it all the way till the cage is against the seesaw. On the other side, where the flybar is sticking out, insert a brass washer on the flybar with the extrusion facing away from the head Insert the other bearing on the other flybar cage end, lubricate it, and insert it on the flybar. Push it all the way and line it up with the flybar balls. Put some thread lock on the bolts, and secure them on the end.Insert the small screws that secure the flybar in place, but only screw them enough so they don't fall (flybar free to move).

We need to adjust the flybar. pull it out just a bit on one side so you can see the notch in it. turn the flybar so the notch is facing up and push it back in the cage just enough so you can't see it anymore, but not too much to see it on the other side! Start tightening the securing screw, but not all the way. only enough so the flybar won't come out. Then make sure the flybar is equidistant on both sides. A trick i use is to push the flybar in on one side so i can see the notch, then push it back in just to the edge of the notch, then turn it around and make sure you can't see the notch. If you're not certain, use a ruler and mesure both distance. When certain of it's mesurements, secure the locking screws. WARNING! don't over tighten these screws. The plastic on the seesaw is very easy to strip.

Insert the weights on the flybar, then screw on the paddles. If you've not done so yet, i HIGHLY recommend the KBDD paddles. Much more stable than stock, and look indefinitely cooler! If using KBDD, screw them in the front (off center) hole. Screw the paddles all the way till you start to feel they are snug, then back off a bit till they are in the right direction. Looking from top, the blades spins clockwise, so the long side of the paddle (or back) should be on the right if you're looking from it's end. Adjust the weights to your liking afterwards. In 75% of the cases, just slide them all the way to the paddles, put some threadlock on their screws, and secure them.

Insert the flybar cage links (#4) in the washout control arms balls.

Next is the blade grips assembly!

To assemble the blade grips assembly, just follow the drawing i made of it. Start with putting the dampeners in the head, then insert the feathering shaft, then put item by item in the head. Put some thread lock on the jesus bolt and secure the blade grips. Tu get them tight, get 2x 1.5mm hex drivers and screw both grips at the same time. Get them fairly tight, but don't over tighten them as the bolt will snap, thus costing you a feathering shaft.. (happened to me)

All you need to do now is install the main blades. Make sure they are properly balanced, then install them on the blade grips. Again, the head turns clockwise when looking at it from the top, so the front of the blades must be facing left if you look at them from their end. Insert them in the grips (with a shim on top and bottom if using aftermarket blades) and secure the main blade bolt and nut. Get the blades tight enough so the blades don't fall when you put the heli sideways, but still loose enough to be able to move them by just tapping at them by hand softly. On aftermarket blades, with the shim, the blades might be a bit tighter. Just make sure the bolt goes through the nylon nut completely and at least 1/32" (~1mm) sticks out of the nut.

Voilà!!

 

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