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Glider radio decision help

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Old 06-01-2003, 09:43 PM
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Psssniper
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Default Glider radio decision help

Help, which radio for sailplanes??
I am getting back into gliders after a 15 year layoff, needless to say, things sure have changed. I need one or two radios that will allow me to fly multiple planes. Here are the planes I have so far.

Original Hobie that was nib and built by me. rud, elev
McLean Extreme, a full house racer, rud, elev, aile, flaps, 6 servos
McLean Vector, rudd, elev, ailerons, 4 servos (Might add flaps)
Boomerang wing ughhhh (not a big epp fan)
flying scale seagull, elevons, 2 servos
CR Turbo, wingeron, elev
SOS 60" ail, elev
SOS 50"
SOS 42'
Pod and Boom homemade, rudder elev

Radios under consideration are the Futabe 8UAFS and the Futaba 9C Will one of these be better in the long run or are they both pretty good sailplane radios. Good, bad, ugly features??? any opinions out there? thanks
Paul
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Old 06-02-2003, 12:56 AM
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strato911
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Default Glider radio decision help

I'm not a sailplane pilot, but there's a newcomer on the market you might want to consider - Tracker II from Polk's Hobbies.

It may not look as fancy as the competitors, but the "brains" inside are packed with features comparable to the 8U and the 9C for alot less ($275). www.polkshobby.com

Just a few of the features include:
  • Fully synthesized system (Tx & Rx). No crystals ever
  • Scanner integrated into Tx prevents power to RF circuit if interference is detected on your channel
  • Only $275 for more features than a similarly priced competitor
  • Tracker Tx compatible with any competitor's FM-PPM Rx
  • Seeker Rx compatible with any competitor's FM-PPM Tx
  • 99 model memory - more than enough for most RC pilots
  • 1024 resolution on all 8 channels
  • many, many more features.
For a detailed, in depth discussion of it's capabilities, I suggest you read the thread there is a tracker II where owners like me are answering any questions, and the manufacturer is even accepting suggestions from the users (us). When's the last time you've seen that??
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Old 06-02-2003, 02:30 AM
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Peter Khor
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Default Glider radio decision help

Take a look at the Stylus w/Glider card or the JR 8103, others to consider is Multiplex 3030 or 4000.
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Old 06-03-2003, 11:18 AM
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Default Glider radio decision help

I don't know how you like to set up you sailplanes , but I like to have flaps on the throttle stick.
Because of that , I think it's important to be able to mix flaps (on the throttle) with elevator to prevent ballooning
when flaps are applied. With a lot of radios, this is not possible. ejbjh
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Old 06-03-2003, 02:07 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Serious glider guiders use Multiplex or Graupner. Here's the list of radios from the 2001 world championship, play "spot the Futaba"! Or even harder, play spot the JR!! Even the American and Japanese fliers do not choose Futaba. The list is overwhelmingly dominated by either the Multiplex MC4000 or Graupner MC24. Well, they do have 50% more channels and 900% more memories than Futaba.

http://w1.192.telia.com/~u19207069/resultat/wc.htm

Harry
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Old 06-03-2003, 02:33 PM
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strato911
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Default Glider radio decision help

Originally posted by HarryC
Serious glider guiders use Multiplex or Graupner.

Well, they do have 50% more channels and 900% more memories than Futaba.
And in North America they cost double to triple as much as their competitor's similar product.
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Old 06-03-2003, 02:44 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

There is NO SIMILAR PRODUCT !!! They have no competitor at that level

Mpx/graupner 12 channels. Futaba 8 channels
Mpx up to 99 memories. Futaba 10ish

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Old 06-03-2003, 02:59 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Originally posted by strato911
And in North America they cost double to triple
Then buy it from www.modelspot.com who now have Mpx approval to sell to USA customers.

H
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:09 PM
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strato911
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Default Glider radio decision help

I was referring to Multiplex's products which ARE similar. Like say the Royal Evo (as an example). I am not "up-and-up" on which systems have which features, but when I briefly looked at them as an option a few months ago, I found that EQUIVILANT Multiplex products are priced WAY MORE than the North American counterparts.

Personally I bought a Tracker II from Polk's: 99 model memory, 8 channel, synth Tx & Rx, $275
http://www.polkshobby.com

Royal Evo 9 non-synth Tx, Tx bat, non-synth Rx (no Rx bat): $649
Royal Evo synth Tx, Tx bat, non-synth Rx (no Rx bat): $850 (not yet available)
http://royalhobby.com/royalevoradio.htm

I think it's fair to say these two radios are SIMILAR enough in features to compare them
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:13 PM
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strato911
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Default Glider radio decision help

I just checked them out - am I right in understanding that's 345 British pounds?

That's $561.79 USD for the non-synth version.
Synth version not availavle, no price given.

$561.798 is more than double $275. I stand by my statement.
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Old 06-03-2003, 04:13 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Originally posted by Peter Khor
Take a look at the Stylus w/Glider card or the JR 8103, others to consider is Multiplex 3030 or 4000.
I sold my 8103 a few years ago and replaced it with a Stylus w/ glider & memory cards. I regret that decision.

I'd hold off on making new MPX purchases (here in the US anyway) at least until the supply-chain issues have been sorted out.
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Old 06-03-2003, 04:39 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Strato, I was referring to the MC4000 and MC24 that have no other competitors.

One does wonder how Polks make that radio at that price. I have not followed any of its threads in detail but have noticed little bits like it does not have names for models, just memory numbers. How many people will put up with that in this day and age will be interesting to see, however it is indicative of the way that they have cut the costs by reducing memory and development programming. I do know how incredibly open the Mpx 3030 and Royal Evo software architecture is compared to all the Far Eastern radios. I have no knowledge, and probably never will have, of the Polks radio to compare it to Mpx but that sort of cost cutting would not inspire me to expect that it is as powerful and flexible as the Mpx radios. Of course, not everyone wants or needs that ultimate edge and for many people the extra edge that Mpx may or may not have over Polks will not be worth the extra price of the Mpx.

Harry
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Old 06-03-2003, 10:05 PM
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Default Tracker II

Harry - I'll admit the MC4000 and MC24 have no equal. If Futaba or Airtonics, or Hitec did make an equal, it would probably be cheaper though.

If you're interested in reading more on the Tracker II, check out the thread There is a Tracker II where owners (like me) are answering any questions, and we have even gotten Mr. Polk to make programming changes based upon our suggestions. How many RC manufacturers do you know willing to do that?

Anyhow, we've digressed a bit from the original topic. If you have any questions about the Tracker II, feel free to post them in the above thread, or send me a PM.

We now return this thread to it's original discussion..
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Old 06-03-2003, 10:12 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Between the two radios mentioned in the original post, in my opinion it would be better to go with the 9C over the 8U because of its easier programming, assignable switches, extra on/off channel, and some mixing functions that come in very handy (for example, not having to use a mix to 'neutralize' one of the knobs). For a little extra money you are getting a better radio that will last you for years. Not that the 8U is bad in any way, but the 9C has benefitted from experience gained by the 8U.
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Old 06-04-2003, 06:07 AM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Thanks to all who have replied! I appreciate all your ideas and suggestions.
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Old 06-04-2003, 11:38 AM
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Default Glider radio decision help

visioneer_one, I guess it depends what type of glider you're putting it in, but care to feedback on your regrets wrt to the Stylus? Been also deciding btwn waiting out for MPX to get sorted out in the US, or go with the Stylus (coming from 8103, LMR planes)
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Old 06-04-2003, 01:04 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

Let's see.

I (used to) fly lots of slope planes, some TD, some XC. No scale stuff.

I never had anything with more than six servos in the wing.

I really liked the 8103. I liked the placement of most of its controls - the top-mounted screen is a particular plus. It was very easy to program without being too limiting. Once I got the hang of it I rarely had to refer back to the manual.

I also liked the fact that I could keep ten different model setups stored in the radio at all times.

The only thing I didn't like was the way that flaps & spoilers are handled when using the GLID template for a plane with a throttleable electric motor. It can be done, but you have to put the flaps onto a rotary pot instead of the 'throttle' stick.

For LMR sailplanes this isn't an issue, as you'd put the motor on a switched channel.

My Stylus has flap & spoiler sliders with center detents on the rear of the case, which is ideal for that model type.

It has serious shortcomings in the user friendlieness department, though.

It has a tiny 2-line LCD buried at the bottom of the case. I won't even discuss its hunger for battery power... 2 hours is *not* adequate when fllying XC!

It is difficult to program. The menu system employed is archaic, and makes extensive use of crypric abbreviations. I find myself needing to refer back to the manual too frequently - I keep a copy in my sailplane flight box.

The memory system SUCKS. You can only store one type of model in the radio at a time, and only four configurations at any one time. Switching model types or loading in new models is unnecessarily tedious.

My issue is this: the Stylus is more flexible and (in some ways) more suited for sailplane flying than the 8103. OTOH its lack of user friendliness and amount of difficulty necessary to make simple programming changes is a high price to pay for that flexibility.

Just my opinion.
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Old 06-04-2003, 03:36 PM
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Default Glider radio decision help

visioneer_one, thanks much for the info! I've only started getting "in" to sailplanes and have to deal with no more than 4 servo wings for now; been thinking of scale in the near future and possibly all that F3/F5 wannabe mentality in the long run
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