Night flying

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Night flying is a fun variation to normal flying, done (unsurprisingly) at night, and using a variety of different technologies to light up the helicopter and keep it visible.

Lighting methods include:

  • Night blades
Main blades containing light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and small batteries that allow the rotor disk to be seen.
  • Electric glow string
Special wire that glows when fed with a high frequency, high voltage, low current electricity from a glow string driver powered by 5-15V (depending on the driver).
  • Chemical glow string
Chemical glow strings contain a small glass phial that cause the entire string to glow for several hours once broken. Cheaply available from Ebay.
  • Luminescent items
Items made from luminescent plastic (such as K&B tail blades) and illuminated with ultraviolet (UV) LEDs.

Hints

  • Your helicopter will look substantially different at night. Make sure you recognize the different orientations well before flying.
  • Ensure that the flying area is free of obstructions, including trees and people.
  • Don't forget you will need some lighting at ground level in order to set up and start your helicopter.
  • Chemical glow string is very useful for indicating the landing area, and the flight line.

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