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Old 08-30-2011, 06:11 PM
  #1
luciuswillson
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Default Radio

I have a question regarding Tx's. I currently am learning to fly on a second hand trainer but am getting ready to build my first plane a four star 60. My only experience with radios is futaba as I have the real flight sim and my trainer radio is an old futaba skyport 6ch.

I am considering getting a spectrum dx6i from my local hobby shop. My question is do the spektrum's throttle stay put when I move it to where I want it to. I know on the futaba has a ratchet type of throttle. I don't care if the spektrum does not ratchet but I do not want to go back if I let go of the throttle stick. Can I do that with this radio?

also is this radio a decent radio to start my flying career with. My plan is in the next four years to build and fly the four star, a p51, f4u corsair, and a p40. I think most of those plane need six max except the f4u which could use 7 if I wanted to do retract rear wheel as well.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:15 PM
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Default RE: Radio

Regardless of brand, RC radio's throttles stay put, they are not spring loaded.
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:17 PM
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luciuswillson
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Default RE: Radio

Thanks.
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:25 PM
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Default RE: Radio

Given your four year plan I would not consider a radio with less than 7 channels.

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Old 08-30-2011, 06:33 PM
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luciuswillson
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Default RE: Radio

I thought about that but the only of those planes that requires a 4-7 channel is the f4u but the 7th channel is just for a rear wheel retract. I still don't know yet.
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ORIGINAL: Redback

Given your four year plan I would not consider a radio with less than 7 channels.

Terry
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:14 PM
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Default RE: Radio

Just my opinion but I just upgraded from a dx61 to a dx8, I would suggest going with the dx8 off the start, there are so many more programing abllities and mixing, I wish i would have bought the dx8 first as it has an sd card to allow you to load setups easyer. again just my 2 cents.
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Old 08-30-2011, 09:33 PM
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Quote:
ORIGINAL: luciuswillson

I thought about that but the only of those planes that requires a 4-7 channel is the f4u but the 7th channel is just for a rear wheel retract. I still don't know yet.

For what its worth the channel count of any radio system is not the prime consideration in many cases. The higher channel count systems typically will include more functionality and features even if you never use all the channels chances are good you are going to want more of those features later.

The problem is no one at your stage ever really knows what they will be wanting four years from now and its unlikely you will understand what they are if listed on a brochure for example.

If you truly expect to still be using the same Tx and only the same Tx four years from now especially considering the aircraft you listed then anything less than the typical modern 7 channel should be considered a minimum.

John
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:58 AM
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Default RE: Radio

The other thing to consider is that it's not always a case of one function per channel. I often use one channel for each flap to give me the extra flexibility for trimming. Same deal with dual elevator servos. Sure you can use a JR Multibox or similar but its just another piece of kit to worry about.

After 4 years with a DX7 (which replaced a JR388 8 channel) I just upgraded to a JR 9 channel 2.4Ghz and I love it!

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Old 08-31-2011, 04:55 AM
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Default RE: Radio

And just for the record, you can put the tail wheel retract on the same channel as the main gear retract, so you still only need 6
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:20 AM
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Default RE: Radio

When I got back into R/C 10 years ago I bought a 6DA.  You can do a LOT with a six (and companies like Smart Fly have servo combiners that do what mixing does on the "big" transmitters).

It is surprising how fast you can use up channels with mixing and things like split elevator halves and split ailerons/flaps.  My HotStik is a .40 size sport model with no retracts and it uses 8 channels for just control surfaces and throttle: four wing servos and two elevator servos.

When you're looking at radios figure the cost per channel of a 6 vs. a 7 or 8.  Sometimes they get overly complicated (you don't have to use all the balls and whistles)  but it is nice to have upward mobility.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:28 AM
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Default RE: Radio

Well, Charlie, you can always go with pull-pull elevators and eliminate one servo and radio channel... I have an Excelleron 90 with way to many chords going back to the rear. Both the elevator and rudder are on a pull-pull system. It looks like a sail boat back there.

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Old 08-31-2011, 05:29 AM
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Default RE: Radio

Well, Charlie, you can always go with pull-pull elevators and eliminate one servo and radio channel... I have an Excelleron 90 with way to many chords going back to the rear. Both the elevator and rudder are on a pull-pull system. It looks like a sail boat back there.

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Old 08-31-2011, 05:29 AM
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Default RE: Radio

Well, Charlie, you can always go with pull-pull elevators and eliminate one servo and radio channel... I have an Excelleron 90 with way to many chords going back to the rear. Both the elevator and rudder are on a pull-pull system. It looks like a sail boat back there.

CGr.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:38 AM
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Default RE: Radio

I generally recommend starting with no more than 6 channels for some very good reasons. First, you need to learn how to FLY. Some people pick it up quickly, and others may take a few years. Either way, once you've learned the basics, you will need to get in a lot of stick time before you start getting good.

Now some people may say that they PREFER to use two channels for ailerons and two for elevator, etc. but the fact of the matter is, you don't NEED them -And it can take years to advance to the point of needing advanced mixing options.

Now let's fast forward a year or two... or three or four. Now you're a good flier. Do you NEED more channels? Do you WANT more channels? If the answer is "Yes", then you can go out and buy a bigger radio - BUT - You have several things going for you:

1. THEN you will have the advantage of knowing what you want, and understanding advanced features better than you do now.

2. You can keep your 6-channel radio as a backup in case your new one needs repair (it's ALWAYS good to have a backup Tx!)

3. (This is one of the most overlooked) Just think of how many new features will be available in two or three years from now. So when the next super-duper feature comes out, you didn't get stuck buying last year's model!
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:46 AM
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Default RE: Radio

As for number three, Mike, something that relates to that is with computers and USB 1 vs USB 2. I bought a computer, a Dell Laptop in fact, that cost me a pretty penny. At the time I bought it, USB 2 was just coming out so I thought that with this new Dell, I'd get USB 2. Well, upon delivery, I found that it had USB 1, and I was stuck with it.

With radios, you never know when that will happen, so you could buy one today that is top of the line, then find that, tomorrow, they came out with one that has more bells and whistles.

Luck of the draw. But, generally, I agree with you. Heck, I don't know how to use all the stuff my radios have now, so why would I want to upgrade to something more fancy other than to just do it.

CGr.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:54 AM
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Default RE: Radio

I find when I go to the field that two radios and two or more models works very well.

With today's transmitters I'd lean very heavily towards a less-expensive bind-n-fly (not a park fly short range unit) with six channels and then save up for a more complex one of 8 or 10 channels for a few years down the road.  That would give a good back-up and a second radio to fly while the other charges at fun-flys or long days at the field. 
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:27 AM
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luciuswillson
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Default RE: Radio

Thanks for all of your help. I have decided to go with a spektrum dx6i that will get me through the next few years and then upgrad as needed. This helps me out a lot as I am now able to stay at the bottom of my budget.

Thnaks
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:29 AM
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Default RE: Radio

I've seen plenty of pilots crash airplanes over the years by inadvertently activating something or messing something up with regard to the programming of their computer radio. I have never seen a pilot have issues while flying, however, due to his radio system being too straightforward or too easy to use.

My advice is to continue enjoying the quality and reliability of your Futaba Sky Sport 6 for a while longer.
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
ORIGINAL: luciuswillson

Thanks for all of your help. I have decided to go with a spektrum dx6i that will get me through the next few years and then upgrad as needed. This helps me out a lot as I am now able to stay at the bottom of my budget.

Thnaks
Until recently, I flew competitive aerobatics with a Futaba 6EX, which hasless features than the DX6i. I used the same radio to fly a 50cc Pitts biplane with nine servos. More features can be nice, but you would be surprised at what you can get away with. I guarantee that 6i will last you a long time.

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Old 08-31-2011, 06:38 AM
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Quote:
ORIGINAL: bigedmustafa

I've seen plenty of pilots crash airplanes over the years by inadvertently activating something or messing something up with regard to the programming of their computer radio. I have never seen a pilot have issues while flying, however, due to his radio system being too straightforward or too easy to use.

My advice is to continue enjoying the quality and reliability of your Futaba Sky Sport 6 for a while longer.
Quote:
ORIGINAL: Nathan King

Until recently, I flew competitive aerobatics with a Futaba 6EX, which has less features than the DX6i. I used the same radio to fly a 50cc Pitts biplane with nine servos. More features can be nice, but you would be surprised at what you can get away with. I guarantee that 6i will last you a long time.
A big DITTO to both!
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:45 AM
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Quote:
ORIGINAL: MinnFlyer

I generally recommend starting with no more than 6 channels for some very good reasons. First, you need to learn how to FLY. Some people pick it up quickly, and others may take a few years. Either way, once you've learned the basics, you will need to get in a lot of stick time before you start getting good.

Now some people may say that they PREFER to use two channels for ailerons and two for elevator, etc. but the fact of the matter is, you don't NEED them -And it can take years to advance to the point of needing advanced mixing options.

Now let's fast forward a year or two... or three or four. Now you're a good flier. Do you NEED more channels? Do you WANT more channels? If the answer is ''Yes'', then you can go out and buy a bigger radio - BUT - You have several things going for you:

1. THEN you will have the advantage of knowing what you want, and understanding advanced features better than you do now.

2. You can keep your 6-channel radio as a backup in case your new one needs repair (it's ALWAYS good to have a backup Tx!)

3. (This is one of the most overlooked) Just think of how many new features will be available in two or three years from now. So when the next super-duper feature comes out, you didn't get stuck buying last year's model!

I'm a simple man and usually only fly WWI birds, so a 6 channel is plenty for me. Matter in fact I had one JR Sport 72 SX600 that I've been using for 8 years, and I bought another of the same radio as a backup brand new for $50 at my LHS 2 days ago. The radio sometimes came stock with the original RTF PTS Mustang. The guy bought the plane but never used the radio, receiver, battery or charger and used his equipment in it instead. When I saw it at the Hobby Shop, I snatched it up.

The reason why I like this radio so much is because it's very easy to use, very reliable and it's a 72! Plus I'm a big JR fan. Call me bias.


Pete
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:07 AM
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Default RE: Radio

The Dx series have two types of radio, the airplane and the helicopter. The rachet trottle is on the plane version, the heli is smooth 
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:53 AM
  #23
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Default RE: Radio

HAve you thought about a used Radio?...... I would recomend a pre-owned DX7, as you should be able to find one for 120-175 bucks and you will have lots of options and channels that should fulfill your needs for many years to come.
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:57 PM
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Default RE: Radio

I had been using a Futaba 6EX 6 channel for my first few models, and it worked just fine - up unil the point that I dropped it and smashed a gimbal.

I replaced it with a Tower Hobbies 6 channel computer radio, and this is what I have been using since. I don't think you really need a ten thousand dollar, 34 channel radio unless you fly a model worth more than a diamon planted Siberian tiger. Sure, the features they come with are nice (timers, touchscreens, cameras, memory for more models than you will ever have time to build, etc), but that is what you are really paying for, not the extra few channels. It's just not worth it to me or the average sport flyer.

Either way,

Happy flying!

Graeme
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Old 08-31-2011, 03:23 PM
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Default RE: Radio


Quote:
ORIGINAL: JohnBuckner


Quote:
ORIGINAL: luciuswillson

I thought about that but the only of those planes that requires a 4-7 channel is the f4u but the 7th channel is just for a rear wheel retract. I still don't know yet.

For what its worth the channel count of any radio system is not the prime consideration in many cases. The higher channel count systems typically will include more functionality and features even if you never use all the channels chances are good you are going to want more of those features later.

The problem is no one at your stage ever really knows what they will be wanting four years from now and its unlikely you will understand what they are if listed on a brochure for example.

If you truly expect to still be using the same Tx and only the same Tx four years from now especially considering the aircraft you listed then anything less than the typical modern 7 channel should be considered a minimum.

John

Im just starting out and have allready upgraded from a Futaba 6EX to a 7C so I can have complete adjustment over the dual aileron servo's
also the other extra's are nice.

I would get the absolute best radio you can afford.

Jimmy
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