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Starting out in RC again

Old 06-02-2013, 05:48 PM
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mmabc
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Default Starting out in RC again

I've been thinking about getting back into RC planes and pattern flying again. I haven't done it since the early 90s when frequency changes and babies ended my hobby for quite a while. I have a .40 trainer, a .60 size ugly stick, and a Dalotel from the mid-80s. It's been so long, I'm going back to square one starting with the trainer, playing around on the stick, and hopefully working on getting the Dalotel back to top shape. Mainly, I need new engines and radios.

The top of the line .60 OS pump engine I have was under powered for the Dalotel. It never really flew like it should have. It would be nice if I could get it running for the stick. It's all gummed up, and I bet the bearings are all rusted up. Anyone think that might be a possibility? Otherwise, what engine would be really impressive in the Dalotel?

For radios, I want two. One to train my grandson on and possibly later move into the stick. For the other, I want something that will take me as far as I want to go. What would you guys recommend?
Old 06-02-2013, 06:49 PM
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Jim Johns
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

Welcome back! I just got back into RC a year ago after a 13 year hiatus myself so Iknow exactly what you're facing.

Here's the drill for reviving the OS. Do NOT turn it over! Remove the backplate, head and carb and submerge the entire engine in fuel. Denatured alcohol is also acceptable. Cover the container tightly or the alcohol will evaporate. Let it sit overnight and it should start loosening Up. You may have to repeat this step a couple times to free it up completely. I'd also recommend completely disassembling and cleaning the carb as well. Oil everything up liberally when you're done. That's what I did with my OS 61 FSR and it's now powering my RCM Trainer 60 without a bearing change. If you need bearings, try http://rcbearings.com.

Radios - If you had decent radios, I'd just replace the batteries and use them. That's what I did. Check out NoBS Batteries for your battery needs.
http://www.hangtimes.com/index.html

I'm afraid I can't be much help on the engine for the Dalotel. A lot will depend on the size and weight of the plane.

Jim
Old 06-02-2013, 10:03 PM
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again



This forum and the Classic Pattern forum at RC groups are the places to start.

As far as reviving the OS+1 on what Jim said. Some will suggest a green antifreeze soak but for gummed up not run in a long time engines I think soaking them in fuel is best to get started.

I would add that you should dismantle as much of the engnie as possible before you soak it so you can check if its dammaged in some way. If it's still not loosened up after an over night soak in fuel, get out a heat gun for monkote or a hair dryer and heat it up to where you can't touch it with out gloves on. Then see if it will loosen up. If not back in for another 24 hr soak and repeat the heat.

As far as bearings may I suggest that if they need to be replaced that you go with with sheilded stainless with the highspeed retainer. IMO the front bearing should have double rubber sheilds and the rear a metal sheild on the crankshaft side.

I would stay away from anything with ceramic balls. Think of it this way, what happens if you drop a ceramic plate on the ground while standing? When I got back into the flying rc and heard about ceramic bearings I was awed by the idea of them. Balls harder then steal , higher temp rating, won't corrode, etc.

Too make a long story short I replaced all my engines with the new-fangled bearings just to find out that with a mild prop strike on the runway, during a hard landing, they can fracture and destroy the engine just like the dropped ceramic plate. After spending all that money on the ceramic type of bearings it's my opinion that they really aren't needed. The ducted fan and boat engines back in the 80's did just fine without ceramic bearings so I can't really see the benefit of the extra expense other than bragging rights about how much you spent on your bearings and of course the awe factor.

What I think is more important is having a steal sheild on the rear bearing next the crankshaft and double sealed on the front They'll get plenty of oil from the pistons down stroke as that pressurizes the crankcase and forces the oil into the bearings. Also the steal sheild on the rear will hopefully keep the retainer and balls in the the bearing races if they fail for some reason.

For the Dalotel engine how about one an 90 2stroke or a 120 4stroke. Magnum, Evolution, ASP(hobby king), OS, YS all have reliable engines nowadays from what I have read hear. It's just how much you want to spend.

As far as a radio There's Hitec's Aurora 9 channel, Spectum, JR, and Futaba. I'm partial to Futaba but then again I was able to get a brand new Futaba 9c off ebay for $125plus shipping. If I had seen a 9 channel JR for that price when I first started looking I might be a JR nut.

Futaba does have the 8FG which has 14 channels which I think is good radio for you to start with. With S-Bus technology theres no need for having a gazillion channels anymore as S-bus allows you daisy chain as many servos as you want per channel. you'll have to check it yourself. The S-Bus rx's allow you to use analog, digital, or S-Bus servos. If I were starting right now I would give that technology as very serious look as it's the future for RC IMO.

For your grandson a 6EX or 7C 2.4 ghz can be had for a reasonalbe price off ebay. I also think their Fasst 2.4Ghz technology is very solid. They recently came out with less expensive 2.4Ghz technology called FHSS. I'd definitly check out their website cause S-Bus is really a cool technology which just came out a little over a year ago. Check it out. http://www.futaba-rc.com/

Another plus for Futaba is the Hobbyking has fasst compatable 8channel rx's for $32. I have 4 of them and they have worked flawless so far. They also have them for Spectrum priced similarly.

Make sure u check then out and the other following websites

http://www.hobbyking.com/
http://www.nitroplanes.com/
http://www.hobbypartz.com/

Regards
Old 06-03-2013, 10:07 AM
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mmabc
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

Thanks guys. Very good advice. I'm definitely going to try and recover both the .40 and .60 engines if I can. Anything I can do to keep my startup costs down is a good thing.

My old radios and receivers are no good because of the frequency changes. Too bad too because I paid over $500 for mine when they came out with PCM. Good thing the prices have come down. What about the servos? Any chance these old servos would work with a new receiver? Even if yes, would that be a good idea?

I was also worried about the Tx modes.I learned on mode 4, and our club had a little cottage industry of re-wiring radios to get it that way. I was afraid I'd either have to tackle that or re-learn on mode 2, which I really didn't want to do that. I had a radio for my trainer that was mode 2. I hated it that way.I could keep it in the air, but not much more.

I see all the radios now let you select that, but I see, for example, the 8FG radio says it comes mode 2. Any other impact in functionality from changing it to mode 4?


Old 06-03-2013, 11:33 AM
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

Flying mode 4 today only requires plugging in your rudder servo into the aileron Rx channel and vice versa. Programming of switches on Futaba (although I'm not a user) should allow you to set things like dual rate switches, mixing and so forth. The only hassle may be that you have to think rudder everywhere it says aileron and vice versa.

It should be a simple fix for Futaba to supply you with an M4 Tx. It's a software variable swap, recompile and firmware zap.

I learned on M1 and made the switch to M2. M4 for an M1 flyer is akin to flying standing on your head... [&:] Can't quite fathom it...

David

PS Welcome back!
Old 06-03-2013, 07:54 PM
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eness76-RCU
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

I had a good friend that could fly the wings off a pattership in mode 4. He once told me the hitec aurora 9 had the mode 4 programming built right in.
Old 06-04-2013, 02:56 AM
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WEDJ
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

One word: Simulator!
Old 06-05-2013, 11:05 AM
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mmabc
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

BTW, I contacted Futaba about the mode 2 vs mode 4 bit.I got an automated response that reminded me there could be mechanical differences. For example, mode 1 swaps elevator and throttle compared to mode 2. One stick of course has a spring and one has a rachet that have to be swapped. I can't think of any mechanical differences between 2 and 4. Rudder and aileron are swapped. Still though they say mode 2 is stocked, modes 1, 3, and 4 have to be special ordered.

I followed up to ask exactly what has to be changed. Doesn't make much sense to advertise a software selectable mode, but only if you special order from the factory in the fine print! That's what we used to do, and when we didn't want to do that, we swapped and re-soldered the wires from the sticks.

I'm curious how this impacts a trainer slave setup? I learned on mode 4, but I don't want to teach anyone mode 4. I'll want the slave radio set to mode 2, and the master set to mode 4. Anyone know if I can do that?

One other question. I was looking on craigslist yesterday. It might intersting to buy out someone with an upgraded trainer, plus a radio and other accessories I need. I saw a bunch of folks with 72Mhz radios. What's the story on that? I see the new ones are 2.4Ghz. That was one of the final straws that took me out of RC when they changed the frequencies and I would have to replace my $500 radio. Are the 72Mhz radios still in use legitimately?
Old 06-05-2013, 12:10 PM
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mmabc
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

This is what I got back:

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"All the transmitters sld in the US are mode 2. They do not stock other modes. If you want a different mode they can be requested through some retailers and they will be modified. Depending on the transmitter and the mode wanted it may be required to send the transmitter to the service center so the potentiometers/encoders can be re-calibrated.

The 8FG Super from mode 2 to mode 4 would not be required to be sent in. You could do it yourself electronically through the transmitter."

Even more so, what nonsense to advertise mode 1-4 software selectable!



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Old 06-05-2013, 02:36 PM
  #10  
doxilia
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again


ORIGINAL: mmabc

I'm curious how this impacts a trainer slave setup? I learned on mode 4, but I don't want to teach anyone mode 4. I'll want the slave radio set to mode 2, and the master set to mode 4. Anyone know if I can do that?
It shouldn't. What pot is used to control what channel is encoded is simply a mechanical issue. In the old days as you say you needed to swap pot solder points because the channels were hard coded to a conduit. Nowadays the "swapping" is done electronically. As you remap the aileron to the left horizontal pot from the right (and vice versa for rudder), the encoder knows where to receive the input from on a specific channel. So if aileron is assigned channel 1 by your manufacturer, channel 1 is encoded to the Tx from the preset stick and sent over RF to the Rx.

In a trainer setup, it is simply a matter of which encoder is used to control the channels. If encoder A (the instructor) is used, the instructor's channel encoding is sent to the transmitting RF. If the student's encoder is used, that encoders mapping is sent over to the instructors RF deck. What sticks happen to be used on each transmitter is strictly a local thing. The Rx knows nothing about that nor does it care. It just reads "Ch 1, +2.3V - go"... so to speak.

One other question. I was looking on craigslist yesterday. It might interesting to buy out someone with an upgraded trainer, plus a radio and other accessories I need. I saw a bunch of folks with 72Mhz radios. What's the story on that? I see the new ones are 2.4Ghz. That was one of the final straws that took me out of RC when they changed the frequencies and I would have to replace my $500 radio. Are the 72Mhz radios still in use legitimately?
It might just be me but I wouldn't buy someone else's trainer unless I'd seen it fly and probably knew the person selling it. I also wouldn't recommend buying used 72 MHz equipment today (unless there is a specific reason like wanting to convert old well build joy stick radios to modern encoders and 2.4 decks). New 2.4 radio equipment is just so reasonably priced today that buying used 72 is not only a no warrantee proposition but it also is investing in deprecated equipment. You can spend as little as $50 on a new 4-5 channel 2.4 Tx. Receivers and servos are typically bought separately in any case so there is no huge added benefit from buying a complete radio system today. With ~$250-350, a new 7 or 8 channel Tx can be bought. While it is not necessary at first, it quickly becomes useful to have a few extra channels and the associated programming ability of those radios. For a lower start up cost, a 5-6 channel Tx is the way to go.

That said, 72 MHz is a legal band today but the frequency separation is narrower than before the days of PCM (which was typically also 72 just encoded in a "digital" way). In order for any Tx and Rx to be AMA or MAAC legal on the 72 MHz band, they have to be "narrow band" compliant. In most cases, it is easier to use a modern inexpensive 2.4 band RF deck even if one wants to continue using older encoder and stick/switch Transmitters (e..g, Kraft, ProLine and the like).

David
Old 06-05-2013, 04:06 PM
  #11  
Jim_Purcha
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

Off topic here is a discussion for Mode 4. I fly mode 2 though.

Jim
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Old 06-05-2013, 04:37 PM
  #12  
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again


ORIGINAL: mmabc

I've been thinking about getting back into RC planes and pattern flying again. I haven't done it since the early 90s when frequency changes and babies ended my hobby for quite a while. I have a .40 trainer, a .60 size ugly stick, and a Dalotel from the mid-80s. It's been so long, I'm going back to square one starting with the trainer, playing around on the stick, and hopefully working on getting the Dalotel back to top shape. Mainly, I need new engines and radios.

The top of the line .60 OS pump engine I have was under powered for the Dalotel. It never really flew like it should have. It would be nice if I could get it running for the stick. It's all gummed up, and I bet the bearings are all rusted up. Anyone think that might be a possibility? Otherwise, what engine would be really impressive in the Dalotel?

For radios, I want two. One to train my grandson on and possibly later move into the stick. For the other, I want something that will take me as far as I want to go. What would you guys recommend?
Don't know how large the Dalo is. If it has around a 70" span and maybe 800 squares, then I recommend one of the really fine 20cc class gas engines. Possibly the best of the bunch is the OS22cc. The DLE20cc is also a well mannered strong engine. These are a little heavier than the old 60s plus they have their CDI included which add another 3 ounces+. But from a reliability point of view and operation simplicity, they are hard to beat. They truly sip gas, so a 6 oz tank will fly them 20 minutes. Bearing issues, gumming up, etc. are all things that simply don't exist in gas world

Radios, take your pick of the new 2.4 gig equipment from the top four manufacturers. Any of themoffer the most reliable, RFI-free equipment we have ever had. JR, Futaba, Airtronics or Hitec all are superb. If price is an object, then Airtronics and Hitec offer better value. The newest kid on the block is Spektrum....many guys use them.

There's been an explosion of servo offerings too in the last 20 years. Look up on-line for comparisons between servos/prices. For a 70" Dalo, moderate tork and speed, all digital except maybe for engine, is what you want. There are many many servos that will work well and BTW, large, clunky monstrosities of servos are gone. Today's servos arerelatively small by comparison for moderate trok/speed..................It's a great time to fly RC.
Old 06-05-2013, 06:48 PM
  #13  
mmabc
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Thanks for the help guys. So, I bought a used Futaba 7C today and a couple of R617FS receivers. So, hopefully, I won't regret that. In any event, it's a big step towards getting back into it. I went out to look at my old old dusty models (sad state of affairs that it was!). I found a Futaba FP-131S servo I looked at. Probably the best one I had. Is that still usable? If I can spread out the costs, catch up on a few honey do's, I can keep my wife out of the picture for a while!

I looked at the Dalotel, and it was 70" on the wingspan. I like the gas engine idea for that. It's pretty heavy though, but Ithink I'm going to be flying the stick for a while, until I can get over the hurdle of some of the other expenses.

Looks like I'm going to have to recover at least the wings on the stick. The monokote is so brittle you can barely touch it without poking holes in it. That's another hurdle. I have to find a place to work. My wife supports me getting into a new hobby. Just wait until she finds out which room in the house I'm going to take over!



Old 06-06-2013, 06:28 AM
  #14  
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

You did fine getting the Futaba 7C and 617 receivers. I have two of the xmitters and a dozen such receivers in my little air force. They will take you far and knock on wood I have never had a glitch using them the last 5 or so years. Re engine, I have a Giles 202 that is 72" WS, just a little larger than your Dalotel, and it flies real good with an OS 160FX. I think that is more equivalent to a 30cc. My plane is 12#. If your Dalotel is around that weight, just keep an open mind towards a little more than 20cc. It might do fine, but like most, I rather err on the side of too much power than too little. Just another 2 cents. Jon
Old 06-06-2013, 11:36 AM
  #15  
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Default RE: Starting out in RC again

I switched from mode 2 to mode 4 years ago for fixed wing.
But I still fly helicopters mode 2.
That makes for some interesting radio problems when switching models.
As a general rule, though, even the simpler Futabas allow the flexibility of mode change by holding down a key while turning on the transmitter. The more complex Futabas allow you to assign the sticks and trims to any channel for a given model, and this suits me exactly. And it allows me to cross-train to Futaba transmitters of a different mode.
I also have an Airtronics SG10 I think a lot of, but it has to be re-calibrated every time you change it to a different mode. So I typically use the radio only for planks and not rotors.
JR seems to ignore the issue entirely, so I'm a lost customer. It's a shame, since their radios are such high quality.
Old 06-07-2013, 07:35 PM
  #16  
mmabc
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I said it was a sad state of affairs. I went up into the garage rafters and was looking at some of my old stuff. I was bummed out that the Dalotel had half the rear stabilizer broken off. I think I know where the other piece is. I don't remember how it happened. Probably broke it during a move or bad handling or something. I wonder how hard that would be to repair? Pretty disappointed!

The trainer is pretty messed up too. I think it crashed, but funny that I can't remember. The fuse near the tail is busted up all around near the last bulkhead.

I was also looking around and I have a Conquest IVInever finished. All the flight surfaces were built. I think I got a little overwhelmed about figuring out the engine and electronics installation, and then I started losing interest.

I guess I still have the stickI can get flying pretty quick! Now I'm wondering if I even want to mess with this old stuff. Maybe the Dalotel. That was a pretty cool plane.

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