Homebuilt Heli-Chair Helicopter Hover Training

heli-chair training

Radio Control Helicopter Hover Training

From the designer: I’m selling plans only and that’s about all I do anymore. I no longer actively offer builders support or parts. The Heli-Chair plans are $45 USD for three PDF downloads, lots of color photos, engineering CAD drawings, notes, etc and a YouTube video (which is my old DVD). I don’t really have any reviews but there are a couple good customer videos on YouTube.

VISIT: Heli-Chair


This guy did a bang up job and has a couple videos:

Direct From The Heli-Chair Website…

The Heli-Chair helicopter flight training device is a proven helicopter flight emulator, not a simulator. Emulation of the flight dynamics of a helicopter is very difficult for a computer flight simulation to accomplish, therefore the Heli-Chair utilizes a real helicopter to give you hands-on training.

You will be flying from a mock-up cockpit that has all the same controls as a full size helicopter; a cyclic, collective and throttle, and anti-torque pedals which fixed-wing pilots often refer to as rudder pedals. The helicopter is remotely controlled from the helicopter cockpit mock-up.

All of the physics, fluid dynamics, and other aerodynamics of rotary wing flight apply. Nothing is left out because it is real, not simulated. Wind gusts, ground effect, settling with power…every last detail. The Heli-Chair is a very high fidelity flight training system.


Another I just discovered by search:

Common misconceptions:

  • myth 1) the Heli-Chair is a toy, you can’t learn to fly a helicopter with it

  • myth 2) you don’t have that seat of the pants feedback, it won’t work

  • myth 3) model helicopters have gyros, big helicopters don’t

  • myth 4) if it’s facing you, the controls are reversed

  • myth 5) you can’t run away when it comes at you


And “Willy”, who I remember helping by email over the years: his project ended up kind of badly, he crashed, had problems getting the RC side of things up and running, and moved on:

And the very simple explanations:

  • The Heli-Chair is deceptively simple, but it can definitely teach you how to fly a helicopter.

  • You don’t need the feedback, you need to learn muscle memory first!

  • There is nothing over-stable about the model, it can be tuned to fly exactly like a real one.

  • Any good pilot learns that the key is in footwork, learn to maintain heading and go from there.

  • You should be maintaining a safe distance regardless. There is no added risk with being seated.


I updated my plans page, generally directing people to contact me on facebook or by email if they want to purchase a set of plans.

VISIT: Heli-Chair


EDITOR: The Heli-Chair has and certainly “does” offer some helicopter hover and flight experience while also offering excellent hand-eye-multi-control training which is essential for helicopter flight.

While the Heli-Chair does not make any promises of training and ability to create a ready-made pilot, I remember reviews from both pilots and non-pilots who all agreed it did offer the helicopter pilot another training tool.

Quite simply the Heli-Chair replicates as close as possible, the controls of a helicopter played out through a radio controlled helicopter. This offers a real consequence should things go wrong, as opposed to video training situations.

heli-chair combo

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