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T-Rex 600 Torque Tube — Review 11Apr08

Posted by tanker in Advanced, Beginner, Products, TRex.
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Align’s Torque Tube for the T-Rex 600 is one of the first upgrades you should consider for your T-Rex. The Torque Tube replaces the entire belt assembly for the tail including the front and rear gearboxes. Instead of the belt a carbon fiber rod runs inside the tail boom and drives the tail rotor. This upgrade thus eliminates all issues with the tail belt including tightness issues, skipping, belt wear, noise, etc. The TT is virtually maintenance free once installed and all you will need to do is ensure the gears stay clear of debris. If you do have an accident there are of course replacement parts to get your TT back in action.

Besides eliminating some of the annoying belt issues the Torque Tube also helps with both run time and autorotations. The TT is more efficient in transferring power and this equates to less battery usage. This same efficiency also translates into smoother spinning rotors for better autorotations. Now neither area is going to increase dramatically but you will notice a difference in both over the belt driven tail.

If you are a veteran flier the Torque Tube upgrade is almost a no brainer. It is easy to install and there are almost no negatives. The one reason why you perhaps might not want to install the TT is if you fly from a particularly dusty field. Dirt flying into the TT gears could cause problems. Of course if this is an issue you will probably have problems with the main gear or belt drive as well but this is one issue to consider.

Unfortunately, upgrading to the Torque Tube is not quite as simple of a decision for the beginning flier. One negative to the TT is that it is considerably more fragile. If you strike your tail blades you will almost certainly strip a gear. This could just result in an annoying repair or if it happens when you have not managed to actually get the bird on the ground yet you could find yourself with a T-Rex spinning out of control. Tail strikes are a very likely result if you are practicing autorotations. With autos it is very easy to strike your tail especially when you are first learning to do them. So whether you upgrade to the TT or not when first learning to fly is a decision you will have to make. If you are using training gear tail strikes are probably unlikely. With fully committed autos at least the bird will be on the ground if it does happen. Lastly is the simple fact that repairing the TT will add to the costs of any crash you may have. If you are concerned about any of these issues you may wish to stick with the stock belt-driven tail until you gain more experience. Fortunately, upgrading to the TT later is an easy process.

One note, when installing the Torque Tube be sure to place the tube bearing off center as indicated in the instructions. Placing it in the middle of the boom can result in excessive vibrations. Another tip is to mark the boom where it enters the heli body and against the rear assembly. This will make it very easy to see if your tail boom or assembly are getting loose and moving.

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