Ok, I know this is kind of a random question, but on a recent trip to Shenzhen I noticed a stall near Lowu that was selling lots of professional-looking remote-controlled helicopters. Although it's long been a secretly desired toy, I didn't bite. But on my last trip, the store was gone due to construction. I've heard that they're quite inexpensive there, but has anyone come across another shop selling them?
Sometimes on the mini-bus from Kennedy Town to Mongkok we would go down a street that was filled with R/C planes, trains and automobiles. It was near Mong Kok, but I was so turned around after the ten minutes of left right and what not that I wasn't sure where I was.
Though if you take a mini-bus from Kennedy Town to MongKok, you'll probably see it.
Just as an FYI, I recently was in Shenzhen and right in the train station itself was a shop selling lots of RC helis. As a beginner I wasn't looking for anything big, but the prices went up to RMB1300 for what appeared to be a top-of-the-line. I ended up buying a mid-size one for RMB600 which works very well.
Although I'm just getting started, I am amazed that it is so inexpensive to buy these toys. This hobby always seemed prohobitively expensive, but at 600RMB I can actually afford to crash a few times.
Having now done some extensive price comparison between hobby shops in and around Yau Ma Tei, the prices for RC helis in Shenzhen are drastically cheaper. Although I couldn't do an exact model-by-model comparison, the prices in HK seemed on average at least twice as expensive.
There are at least 3-4 RC shops near the Lo Wu train station with a lot to choose from. But since the shop owners speak little english, and thus would not be able to tell you if X model has collective pitch control for example, I suggest you do some reaserch online to know what features you want before heading up there. Once you know what you want, look at the actual heli and transmitter itself and ask to read the instruction manual. I'm quite happy with the one I got, (although I keep crashing....:-)
Octoruss - what model of helicopter did you buy and how much was it?
I have bought a couple of Lama2's recently from Mong Kok. I am told they are a good training helicopter and appear quite robust, although they crash if there is a slight breeze. Costs around $700 including controller.
I would like to upgrade but the shops in Mong Kok seem to suggest that the next level up, petrol engined choppers, cost around $7,000 all in and there isn't much in between. Is this the case?
NewBi, don't listen to them, that's a load of crap. Gas-powered machines are getting harder to come by, considering electric models are getting cheaper, more reliable and easier to fly. Purists still swear by the big $7000 gas-powered ones, but unless you're a professional, you can get a great hobby one that is sitll borderline "professional" for a tenth of that cost. I've since bought 3 helis in Shenzhen and the most I've ever paid was for a Walkera w/ collective pitch for RMB1000. The same model (as far as I could tell) was about US$400 in the states. Go to Shenzhen and buy up there.