A couple of weeks ago, my son and I were just messing around the house, and CNN was on the TV. I was in the other room and heard “Mom, come here quick, you gotta see this!”. That usually means he wants something, and I’m going to spend the money.
CNN was running a feature on Drones, and specifically these 4 bladed helicopters called quadcopters. You’ve probably seen them on the news yourself or maybe even read about them. They’re becoming incredibly popular, if not somewhat controversial. I had to laugh, as they even mentioned some teen age kid that was flying his along the beach, and filmed some male nudist. Some lady got all upset about it and called the kid a pervert. The poor kid, he didn’t even know the guy was there, let alone knew it was a nudist beach.
Most of these remote controlled quadcopters are expensive, as in $500.00 or more. Remember, Single Mom here!
I explained to my son that I just could afford one of those, but that I would look into it. Turns out, they’re not all expensive, just the really nice ones. I found a number of these toy “quadcopters” available for sale online and at the local Frys. These are more “toy” versions, but still really sophisticated. I wanted to find the best quadcopter for the money, and didn’t want to spend more than about $50.00 or so. I ran across a site called DroneBuff while searching around, that shows all of the available drones for sale and offered reviews for many of them.
I found a few models that were in my price range, and ended up buying him a “Hubsan X4 quadcopter” as a surprise. It came the other day. I bought the Hubsan as the reviewers said it was very durable, easy to fly, and had lots of replacement parts available. I looked out on Amazon as well, and the thing had over 500 reviews, and almost all of them positive. That was enough for me, so I ordered it.
We opened the box together, charged it up and read the manual. Then he took is first flight! It lasted all of about 5 seconds and crashed. Turns out, these little quadcopters take a bit of practice to learn to fly. I still can’t do it, but he’s getting really good at it.
I think I made a really good purchase decision. He’s crashed that little bugger more times than I can count and it’s still flying like the first day we bought it. We did have to replace one of the propellers, as it broke running into the kitchen cabinets. But fortunately it came with a few replacements, and replacing them was easy to do.
I think we’ve set a new trend, as now all of his friends want one too. It really is a neat little toy, and keeps him busy. He’s already asking to get one of the other models available. Who knows, maybe this will turn out to be a really good hobby for him.