12.7. CP helicopter swashplate setup part 1 - servo setup


This setup only applies for CP helicopters. Skip this section for FP helicopters.


For this step, disconnect the motor wires from the ESC. This will prevent the motor from accidentally spinning. Do not rely on the Throttle Hold function.

Turn on the transmitter then power up the helicopter.

Remove any transmitter trim from the cyclic controls.

12.7.1. Servo reversing

Move the throttle stick up and down. When you move the throttle stick up, all servos should push the swashplate up. When you move the throttle stick down, all servos should pull the swashplate down.

Some helicopters may be designed so the swashplate moves in the opposite direction. If your helicopter's directions say this is correct, please use this instead.

If some servos are not moving in the correct direction, then reverse the servo direction in the transmitter until all servos move correctly.

12.7.2. Servo centering

Move the swashplate to the middle of its servo range using the throttle stick. Check to make sure the cyclic servos are also in the middle of their travel range. For most helicopters this means the servo arm should be perpendicular to the servo body. If the servo arm is not centered (perpendicular to the servo body) then you may need to remove the servo arm from the servo and recenter it and/or adjust the lengths of the linkages from the servo to the swashplate.

12.7.3. Swashplate leveling

Once the servo centering has been set, the swashplate should be:

  • In the middle of its travel range

  • Perfectly perpendicular to the main shaft.

There should be no tilt to the left/right or forwards/backwards.

If the swashplate is not perfectly level, then remove and adjust the length of the linkages from the servos to the swashplate until the swashplate is perfectly level when the cyclic servos are centered.

12.7.4. Swashplate travel

Set the servo travel on the cyclic servos so the swashplate is all the way down at zero throttle and all the way up at full throttle. Make sure the cyclic servos do not bind at the zero throttle and full throttle positions.

You will limit the travel range later when setting the blade pitch range but for now set full travel.

On some machine and servo combinations (such as the ECO 8/16 and the HS-85) you may need to increase the servo ATV or increase the swashplate pitch mixing to ensure the swashplate travels fully up and down the shaft.

Make sure the swashplate stays level as you increase the throttle stick. If this does not occur, then check your swashplate servo endpoints and make sure they are all the same.