Some weeks ago I (and three others at my day job) purchased a ESky Lama V3 Helicopter, if you are thinking about trying remote control helicopters then this one is just so much fun you should go for it!
This is one strong and fun helicopter, you are best off flying indoors, in an area with some reasonable space and nothing valuable around. The battery charge lasts about 10 minutes but that seams like a long time and whilst you are learning to fly most of the time you will be picking the heli off its side and placing it back in a position you can fly it from.
I have repeatedly crashed the Lama and its incredibly strong, so far Im on my second set of blades (both A and B !), fortunately it comes with a spare set in the box and Im also on my second tail, this didnt come as a spare but only cost about £8.
BuzzFlyer do a great range of spare parts for the V3 Lama and with their being 4 of us at work I just see what every body else needs and do a big-ish order which helps with the postage.
Various connectors for the blades, balance thingy and what not take some serious grief but these just pop back into place without to many problems, I expected these to be the first things to break but they have done amazingly well. Just moments ago I hit the ceiling with the heli, which landed badly on the sofa, the balance hammer on the top came out and was actually bent, but all connectors are in one piece and I was back flying again 20 seconds latter.
The Tail broke some time ago and was a similar crash, I was trying to back away from the window when I got it all wrong and the heli came down backwards from the ceiling and hit the rowing machine on its way, so no great surprise the plastic tail broke! This was easy to replace, just 4 small screws.
If you are looking for a fun present for someone this x-mas then look seriously at the LAMA, I put some serious thought into the purchase and wasnt sure if Id done the right thing, until I started flying it, then it instantly became my favourite toy!
Unfortunately the manuals not to hot for getting started, but its quite simple. Switch on the remote control handset, set the throttle (left hand lever + trim) all the way down, place the Lama on a flat surface, plug in the battery, dont touch it until you see the red flashing led go solid green. Pick up the controls and start flying. You will need to adjust the trims and these change with battery charge, I find getting it a few inches from the ground to get the coarse adjustment then fly it properly and you can then get an idea of the fine adjustment.
One big tip I was given and I would suggest the same, keep it pointing away from you, it gets very confusing working back to front and the Lama reaches the scene of the accident very quickly normally but if you have the controls back to front you end up making it even quicker!
There are some good RC forums around with more tips on flying the Lama.