Horizon Hobby Blade Fusion 270 BNF Basic

Written by Greg Gimlick A standout heli in price and performance Product Review As seen in the Fall 2018 issue of Park Pilot

Bonus Video

The Blade Fusion 270 is a capable heli, and with the bailout feature, you can feel comfortable pushing your skills.


Height: 7.48 inches Length: 22.04 inches Main rotor diameter: 24.21 inches Main rotor head type: Collective pitch flybarless Flying weight: 22.08 ounces Price: $349.99 Info: horizonhobby.com


SAFE technology with panic recovery Carbon-fiber and anodized-aluminum construction Spektrum high-speed metal geared servos Belt-driven tail I opened the box and was struck by the helicopter’s bright green canopy. The fiberglass work and paint are perfect, and the color will surely be visible in the sky. As I pulled everything out of the well-protected shipping box, the overall quality of the Horizon Hobby Blade Fusion 270 BNF Basic was evident. A carbon-fiber frame and skids add to its visual impression. The black anodized aluminum parts certainly enhance this helicopter’s appearance. Further inspection of the tail showed that the belt drive is fully enclosed in the gearbox. I loved seeing that it would be protected from the dusty part of the field that we use for helicopters. The main gear is a helical design and smooth as glass.
The tail rotor gearbox case is fully enclosed, offering better dirt protection for the belt. Anodized parts and smooth action add to the Fusion 270’s overall impression.

The Fusion 270 comes out of the box ready to fly, so there isn’t anything to do but charge the battery and program the radio. The manual is typical of most Blade offerings and includes a detailed chart that matches your transmitter.
Everything is ready to go with the addition of the 4S LiPo battery pack.

Follow the steps closely and you’ll be rewarded with a proven setup that ensures success. When you’ve mastered this aircraft, you can tweak things, but start with the manual’s recommended settings. There is an “advanced settings” section in the manual to guide you through troubleshooting and includes information about how to reset it after a crash/rebuild, should that be required. Looking at how the aircraft is constructed will give you confidence in its abilities and the care taken in its design. Unlike other smaller helicopters, the Fusion 270 employs a standard-driven head instead of a direct-flight control head. I further inspected all of the linkages and found them to be beautifully aligned and adjusted. The links were secure, yet free. Blade used its “optimized servo geometry,” which simply means the links were placed in the best position to align the control linkages. Something new for the AR636A receiver is the aluminum bottom half. The claim is that “improved dampening increases tolerance to vibration.” Time will tell, but it sounds like a good idea. The main shaft is supported by three bearings instead of two, and the shaft is an “oversized” 5 mm. Look over the aircraft while your batteries are charging. Familiarize yourself with the layout and check for any possible maintenance items that should be addressed before the first flight. Check the screws for security. Look at the wiring to ensure that nothing can come in contact with the moving parts. I found that mine was perfect, with everything beautifully channeled and secured. I removed the blades and checked them for balance—perfect again. While they were off, I attached a battery and checked all of the flight controls for proper movement. This also allowed me to confirm that my “hold” worked properly.
Anodized aluminum parts really dress up the Fusion 270 and it’s all stock. Note the antirotation bracket that is mounted on the front.

The Fusion 270 ESC uses governor mode. If you’re new to governors, they can make the throttle curves look different than what you’re used to. Be sure to program your radio to match the settings in the manual. If you run into difficulty, ensure that you have the latest firmware for your radio. My DX9 was a couple of versions behind, so one screen didn’t match the chart until I updated it.
From the left you can see the helical main gear, along with the tail-drive belt. Everything is easily accessible.

The moment of truth finally came on a steamy 90° day when my 3D guru and photo pilot, Daniel Lamb, met me at the field for some test flying. Everything checked out to his liking and he immediately popped it up to a hover and declared that it felt just fine. From experience, I know when Daniel decides that it’s no-holds-barred time, and he stayed true to form. After a few hovering photos, he began to feel it out for real. He told me that this put my last helicopter to shame. Power from the 4S LiPo battery system is noticeably different from the slightly smaller 3S LiPo battery-powered helis I’m used to. If you’re a 3D flier, you will likely be happy with this setup. Extreme pop-ups/pitch pumps showed that the tail held well and the flight controller was up to the task of staying with the maneuvers. A quick check of the bailout feature showed it worked well and reacted fast. What was obvious to me was how quiet the machine was, and that it appeared to be so steady. When it was my turn to fly, I found that my first impression was true. It seemed so solid. I could feel my confidence rising. One thing Daniel pointed out was that the gains on the flight controller might be slightly aggressive in normal mode. That’s something that can be tuned out in programming later, but for our initial flights, we left all of the factory programming as it was. During Daniel’s 3D flights, he mentioned that he would like to have the throttle setting slightly higher. The defaults are 65% in stunt 1 and 85% in stunt 2. He also found during extreme maneuvers that the tail held much better than he thought it might. He really put it through its paces with tic-tocs, inverted tic-tocs, inverted tail-first figure eights, pirouetting flips, rolls, reverse rolls, and maneuvers I didn’t even recognize. At the end of his flights, he said, “Now this is a machine you can grow into!” I know he meant that maybe I would transition to the next level by spending some time with the Fusion 270. This helicopter is a fun size because it’s fully aerobatic, transports easily, and both of my club fields are more than suitable for it. It has plenty of punch for aggressive flying and the bailout feature offers me a confidence level I have not found in other helicopters. Parts are inexpensive and available, but so far, I haven’t had to rebuild it! Having a 3D-capable machine with SAFE is helping me become a better helicopter pilot because I don’t fly in fear when I try a new maneuver. I think you’ll find that the Horizon Hobby Blade Fusion 270 is a great addition to your fleet! Greg Gimlick maelectrics@gimlick.com

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