I have a problem. I am told that is step 1 in overcoming my addiction – admit the problem. While statistics are hard to come by, my guess is that many Dads suffer from my same addiction. I am of course talking about an addiction to – getting RC helicopters and planes for our kids so we can play with them.
Apparently there are forces working against me in overcoming this addiction. An enabler, named Santa Claus, got me my son the Syma S107 RC Helicopter for Christmas. Since Santa threw me a curve and I can’t go cold turkey, I have decided that Step 2 in my program should be to write an honest product review of the radio controlled helicopter and try to help other parents.
Why Most RC Helicopters Are Endlessly Frustrating
If you don’t suffer from my addiction, let me take you through the 10 stages of getting a Radio Controlled RC Helicopter for your kids…
- See A Super Cool Looking RC Helicopter In The Store
- Say to Wife “Yeah, They Look Cool, but they never really work“
- Read Shinny Box That Says “Super Gyro Stabilization – Easy To Fly…Really Easy and FUN“
- Ignore Wife Who Keeps Saying “Those Things Never Work, Remember The Last One That Broke“
- Fake Injury, When Wife Goes To Help You – Throw RC Helicopter in the Shopping Cart
- At Home, Give to Kid – Really Pretend It Is For Him
- Try to Get It Flying – Yell Duck As It Spins Out of Control And Nearly Kills The Cat
- Explain It Just Needs Some Trim Adjustment
- Show Your Son How To Fly It… Promptly Crash and Break It
- Fake Sudden Onset Deafness As Your Wife Says “I Told You So“
While there might be some variation in the steps, that has basically been my experience with RC helicopters. Let’s be clear, this is Dad Does, we are talking about toy level RC Helicopters, I am sure there are radio controlled helicopters that cost hundreds of dollars and work, but I am talking about toy RC helicopters that you can at least pretend are for the kids.
Yes, the toy RC helicopters do take off (most of the time), but trying to get them to stabilize and then turn and go in the directions you want – that has proved to be very elusive. Well, it looks like Santa might know more about helicopters than me, because the Syma S107 RC Helicopter actually works!
The Syma S107 RC Helicopter – A Helicopter You Can Control…AKA… A Miracle!
Here is some footage of my 9 year old son flying the 7.5 inch indoor Syma helicopter. He had only flown it about 5 times before we shot this footage (I wanted to capture something before I wrecked the plane)…
If you have never experienced the frustration of toy RC helicopters, the above video probably does not impress you. However, for the Dads that share my addiction, you can clearly see why I am so happy! He made the plane go up, down, stabilize, rotate and forward and back. He even buzzed the whole family without killing anyone!
Perhaps most impressive about that video is that my 6 year old could care less that his brother is flying an RC helicopter over his head. Normally if an RC helicopter is being flown in the house, everyone puts on a hard hat and ducks for cover!
The Syma S107 – An RC Helicopter That is Fun and Dare I Say It… Easy to Fly?
The Syma S107 really is fun and fairly easy to fly. You push one stick on the remote up and the helicopter goes up. Push the other stick left and it rotates left. Guess what happens when you push it right? It rotates right…well unless you are facing the opposite direction of the helicopter, then the controls are reversed. So, it does take a little finesse and orientation figuring to get it flying smoothly, perhaps that is why the age recommendation is 14 and up. My 9 year old son could fly it fine, but he is probably a better pilot at 9 than I was at 19.
An RC Helicopter That Does NOT Need Constant Trimming
Boy do I hate that word – trim! Every RC helicopter we had could never stay straight. It would always start to spin and then the directions said you had to adjust the trim. Turn the trim left if it is spinning clockwise, or was it the other way around? I never could get those damn things trimmed and it would lead to endless crashes.
Yes, the Sigma S107 does have a trim dial, but you hardly need to touch it. Out of the box, the helicopter stays pretty straight. The fact that the Syma S107 can stabilize and stay straight is what it makes it fun to fly instead of frustrating. Sure, you can play with the trim and get it perfect I guess – but it is not necessary. I firmly believe that having a helicopter that does not need constant trim adjustment is the first step in having a happy Dad.
Looking for Tech Specs on the Syma S107? Dad Does, Does NOT Do That!
This is the point where most product reviews start talking about frequency channels, motor capacities and plane weight to speed ratios – but not here! If you are into all the specs, cool – just go to Amazon.Com and search on Syma S107 and you can read all the specs. At Dad Does, we do product reviews differently – we focus on if the product works in the real world and if it makes your life easier or better. It is not that we don’t think the specs are important, but we just figure why restate what is available elsewhere online?
As a busy parent, here is what you need to know – the helicopter requires 6 AA batteries for the remote control. It does come with a USB cable so the helicopter can be charged from a computer, but you still need batteries for the remote. The other thing you need to know, it has a built in gyroscope – this is a good thing, just means it stays stable and does not crash instantly – a real marriage saver if your wife told you “Don’t Even Think About Buying Another RC Helicopter That Will Not Work!”
The Syma S107 Has A Metal Frame That Every Dad Will Love
The Syma S107 is made mostly of metal. Yes, there are plastic propellers and a few other parts, but most of the frame is metal. This is great news for parents and kids who are prone to crashing every now and then. We have crashed the helicopter a few times and to date it has not be damaged. Of course, I have to assume it can get damaged as there is a whole cottage industry of selling replacement parts for the Syma Helicopters.
The Other Thing Dads and Moms Will Love About the Syma S107 – The Price
If Santa did not bring your kids a Syma S107, you can pick one up at Amazon for only $29.95 . What is bizarre is that it has a list price of $129.95, but everyone sells them for about $30. At $30, it is firmly in a toy price range and actually cheaper than some of the toy RC helicopters they sell at Target that will drive you insane.
Conclusion on the Syma S107 RC Helicopter
At $30, the Syma S107 RC Helicopter is a toy your kids will love and your wife will not hate you for buying. It is fun to fly and relatively easy to control. It comes pre-assembled, you just need to charge the battery and start flying.
There are a few minor negatives with the Syma S107. It takes about 50 minutes to charge and you only get about 6-8 minutes of flying time. While the controls are better than most toy RC helicopters, it can still take a good deal of practice to really maneuver around obstacles with ease.
Overall, if you are looking for an RC helicopter that does not require a second mortgage on your home, but is fun and relatively easy to fly, I recommend the Syma S107. On the downside, it looks like the Syma S107 has made it harder for me to now kick my RC Helicopter addiction. I can hear my wife saying it now.. “Thanks a lot Santa!”
Syma S107 RC Helicopter Gets 4 D’s (scale of 1 to 5) -
FULL DISCLOSURE: Santa purchased the Sigma S107 RC Helicopter with his own money. We did NOT receive any free products from Syma. We were paid absolutely nothing for doing this review. We do not make any money if you decide to buy the Syma S107 RC Helicopter. If you do buy the helicopter and your son or daughter goes on to star in a Top Gun remake, we ask that you invite us to the premier. This is a real review, by a real Dad!
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