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How to fit a T-Rex 450 Pro into a scale fuselage


So, After crashing, digging holes in parks and fields, repairing, spending days on the sim trying to perform some 3D...well I decided that it is not for me. Or for my wallet. I enjoy hovering upside down and buzzing around that way, but that is as far as I go with being aerobatic. And my heart can't really take more than that!

For this simple reason, and for the fact that I really enjoy choppers anyway, I wanted to understand why so many people are into scale helis, they look awesome, that is for sure, but..what else?

So I purchased this fuse from hobbyking, not because it is my favourite, but because it transforms the 450 into a 500 in terms of visual impact. The thing is BIG! Well, for a 450 that is.

My heli is a 450 pro though, so some mods were necessary, so here we go:



The box which the fuse comes in. It is pretty big considering that we are talking about a 450 size heli here!
Even if I heard some horror stories about fuses being crushed during shipping I was very happy with mine: not a single scratch or dent whatsoever
The content of the box, from top left: main body, front body, tail, screws, skids, landing gear, windows, an instruction cd, the mounts for the mechanics and the tail push rod
The donor: my beloved 450 Pro, what a machine!
Mod number one was to adapt the mounts to the 450 pro frame: they are designed for all the other versions of the 450, which have two screws on each side of the frame to mount the landing gear. The Pro only has one central screw at the front and one on the back, so I had to drill a little hole in the center of the ply mounts to allow for a screw to fit in. I used the same screws I was using originally.

People find it difficult to fix the rear mount into the fuse. It is pretty easy really, you need a long screw driver (hex drive to be precise) and access the screws through the top windows next to the rotor.

Remember what the wise man once said: measure twice, cut once!
Both the mounts attached to the frame
In the meantime I glued the landing gear to the fuselage. I used CA glue, and I don't see it going anywhere unless the heli comes down pretty, pretty hard!
The frame is in the fuse! Just place it where it fits best and screw it in place. To access the rear screws you need to get in from the top windows, on the sides of the rotor
Mod number two was to enlarge the rotor housing a tad in order to have enough space for the swash and linkages to fit properly. First I made the cut longer towards the tail, so that the anti-rotation bracket has some room, and then I made the whole cut away area larger, for the links to move freely.

To do that I used two files, a flat one and a rounded one, to precisely model the edges.

Second modification I needed: file the rotor housing to enlarge it a tiny bit
Here is the final result: it is overall wider, with a nice slot for the pitch servo to move freely
Mod number three was to work on the tail: for some reason it appeared that the fuselage was too long, and that my boom was not coming out enough, hiding the tail block. With mod number 2 I solved part of the problem, but still I could not access the screws to fix the tail fin.

What I did was to cut the front part of the fin making it shorter, in order to make it fit perfectly. I see that almost everyone mounts the fin using the two provided spacers, and then they complain that the two screws are not long enough to reach the tail block anymore. Well, doing so I was able to use the two original screws and the price to pay is that the tail is not 100% scale anymore. Well, was it before?

Mod number 3 was to cut a slice of the tail fin in order to make it fit properly.
And this is how it looks
Now I have to take her to the park and try her out. So far I was able to spin it up to see if everything moves freely..and yes, everything is good. Hopefully, if this weekend the weather collaborates I should be able to check her out properly!

Until then, happy landings everyone!