Nitro engines are the number one choice among the many types of remote control helicopters. This is due to the fact that, for their size and weight, they produce a relatively high amount of power compared to the electric ones. A nitro engine is pretty tough and is also the cheapest cost choice for a toy bird that runs on fuel. It is powered by burning nitro methane and a little bit of oil. It of course comes in different engine sizes. The bigger the engine, the bigger the rotor blade it can power and thus a bigger and more superior lift.
The advantage of nitro remote control helicopters is that all they need is fuel and you’re ready to go. No time is wasted waiting around for your battery to charge or waiting for electric motors and speed controllers to cool down. If you take into account the expense of high capacity Lipo batteries used in the electric ones, you will see that a nitro one is generally less expensive. Flight times and speed are generally higher with nitro helicopters as opposed to electric helicopters. And some enthusiasts actually like the noise a nitro helicopter produces. The biggest advantage is that nitro engines are practically damage proof and thus the helicopters have a long life expectancy.
The problem with nitro remote control helicopters is that they are very noisy and can prove difficult to use within a residential setting. Nitro fuel gives off oil mist as a byproduct in the exhaust. This can flow almost everywhere and make things very messy. Unfortunately nitro remote controlled helicopters are difficult to tune and set up correctly especially for novices. This means it can stop running mid-flight if the fuel is contaminated, fuel tank gets blocked or glow plug fails. Glow fuel is also only available at certain stores and because it is a hazardous material, it is expensive and difficult to ship. Nitro helicopters have higher long term operating costs as glow fuel is more expensive than gasoline and glow plugs have to be replaced regularly. Before using a nitro helicopter one has to buy some special equipment in the beginning. These are things such as glow plug drivers. You may also have to get power panels and sometimes even electric starters depending on the manufacturer.
Nitro remote control helicopters can either come ready to fly (RTF), which means its ready for use straight out of the box or it could also come as a self-assembly kit. Nitro helicopters are difficult to use for someone who has never used a remote controlled helicopter before. A nitro helicopter in the wrong hands can be dangerous as it is easy to start a fire. It is best advised to first get lots of practice with an electric helicopter.
Before buying a nitro helicopter, shop around as there are plenty of options to choose from. You will find that prices will vary according to the manufacturer, size of the helicopter and its engine capacity. Be sure to only make purchases from reputable dealers. Nitro helicopters can be found at most hobby shops or online.
For the serious enthusiast, nitro powered remote control helicopters are the way to go as they guarantee more power, stability and control. Even though nitro helicopters are more labor intensive than other helicopters, their flying abilities are unparalleled.