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Interactive Toy - Micro Mosquito R/C Helicopter

The Interactive Toy iFLY VAMP described in the last post is an amazing creature -- a remote controlled bat with flapping wings that you can literally fly around and over a house.

But for more constrained indoor flying, the Interactive Toy Micro Mosquito Remote Control Helicopter is amazing also -- a tiny chopper in the ITC Bladerunner series that's self-stabling, and can hover by itself inches off the ground. The trick is that it has two co-axial rotors that keep it stable in the air.

The Micro Mosquito is tiny -- it fits in your palm, and weighs around 20 grams. But it's fully controllable -- hovering, and flying up / down, left / right, and forward / reverse, with radio control up to 10 meters. And it generates a lot of power -- sheets of paper fly away as it takes off from the surface. It's available at a variety of retailers in the U.S. and Canada for around $79.

You get an idea of the precision control possible (with practice) in this promo video...

    Find the Interactive Toy Micro Mosquito on Amazon.com

More on flying the Micro Mosquito ...

To fly the Micro Mosquito, set it on a horizontal surface and set up with the radio Controller. First, apply power with the Up/Down Throttle (left stick) to jump the Mosquito off the ground -- you don't want to pull off so slowly that the legs drag and catch on the surface. Ta-da! You're now hovering in the air, and can move higher and lower.

But use fine movements -- the Mosquito is very sensitive. It's a good idea at this point to practice landing by gradually reducing the throttle to come down to a gentle stop. Otherwise, you'll come down too quickly, and end up with the unit spinning on its side. Our Mosquito survived these learning experiences, but we still cringed a lot -- especially worrying about the small horizontal tail rotor.

The other thing you'll notice while hovering is that the Mosquito likes to spin around. The side effect of its stability and ability to hover is that it needs to be periodically trimmed to stay pointed in one direction. Turn the Left/Right Trim control (middle dial) clockwise or counter-clockwise to counter the spin and straighten out the craft. However, the trim can and will be disturbed again by changes in the flight or battery condition, so you'll need to continue tweaking this control -- or learn to compensate for a slight spin with the directional control.

The Directional control (right stick) moves the Mosquito left and right, forward and reverse -- relative to the front of the unit as you learn to compensate with the trim. This can be quite fun -- the Mosquito has glowing green LED eyes that can be quite intimidating as it flies directly at you. But don't get too close to walls or vertical furniture, or else it will lose its aerodynamic stability (ouch!).

You charge the Mosquito on the Charger / Display Station, which uses 6 C batteries. Pull out the small cable and plug it in to the tiny charge jack on front of the Mosquito, near the Off/On switch. A 30 minute charge will last for around 7 minutes of flight time. The separate radio Controller uses one 9V battery.

Manifest Tech Site