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I'm in need of a radio....

Old 01-22-2003, 07:02 PM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

I'm in the market to buy a new radio and I need a little advice on picking out one. How many channels should I get? Can an airplane radio be used as a helicopter radio? I know I need at lease 6 channels......but if I'm going to be serious about this hobby....should I just splurge for the 8 or 9 channel? I'm confident with my trainer now so I plan to purchase a U-Can-Do 3D plane in the near future. I appreciate any advice given. Thanks!
Old 01-22-2003, 11:10 PM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

Well you do not say how much you are willing to spend so I will tell you my opinion. You will get YOU NEED TO BUY THIS RADIO OR THAT RADIO. I think that the best buy right now is the Airtronics RD6000 or the soon to bee RD8000. With these radios you can use ANY of the other brands of servos and recievers out there. Yes 6,8, and 9 channels radios are nice. If you can spend that much the Jr 8103 or even the 10x series is very good. Futaba radios are also good. I did have a ral problem with there service so I do not use them any more. I loved my Hitec Super 7 until it needed to be repaired. After the problems I had with the service I won't touch a Hitec radio.

Almost every one that repsponds will have there own opinion, so you will need to read and take all of the advice , even mine with a grain of salt.

Dru.

P.S. Most of the newer computer radios can do both helis and fixed wing. If you are thinking about flying helis go with the heli version first.

Old 01-23-2003, 01:50 AM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

Price and plans of what you want to do how soon?

Any heli radio can be used for a fixed wing aircraft... just turn off the computer mixes (or use aircraft mixes which the radio will have)

Prices for the radios capable of passably controlling a heli start at appx $250. Just about anything Futaba 6XAS-H or better is fine for a heli. Just about any 4 CH or better FM radio ($120 +/- $20) is fine for getting started in fixed wing flying.

Avoid the Futaba 6DA. Its a good radio... just overpriced for the features. $5 more and I coulda had a lot more bells and whistles.
Old 01-23-2003, 10:03 AM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

I plan to spend around $200-$400 for a radio. I'm leaning toward the Airtronics RD8000. I'm stationed in Iceland right now so I won't be purchasing one until I get back to the states. I'm just looking around to see what others opinions were before I went out and spent alot of money on something I won't be happy with. Are computer radios easy to learn........like programming and stuff like that? I'm new to the R/C world and I'm not to familiar with throw rates and stuff like that. I guess I have some reading to do! Thanks for all the advice and words of wisdom. [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif[/img]
Old 01-23-2003, 12:04 PM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

The computer radios typically have about 6 buttons to navigate menus for all the programming. Not hard to do at all. What takes practice (and a bit of self dicipline) is not over-using the computer to make up for a poor linkage setup.

When setting up a plane always start with all ATV's at 100% and digital trim at 0%. Get the linkages as close to centered as possible, and adjust the throws mechanically. (with the rods, not the computer) If you find later that you hav your HIGH RATE outside the 90% to 110% range... try to mechanically adjust to get the same deflections at 100% ATV. Also, check where the digital trims are, and try to get the linkages adjusted for neutral to be as close to 0 trim as possible. The low rate settings can be anywhere you want... typically 50% to 70% of high rate throw.

Exponential just makes the stick either hypersensitive (+ expo) or very "soft" (- expo) near center. If the expo is set up with the stick somewhat soft at center, small wiggles can be un-noticed by the aircraft. This really helps prevent accidentally adding a bit of aileron when doing a loop. How much expo? depends on how you like the plane to respond. "Play" with expo using "dual rates"... 100% throw on both rates, one with no expo, the other with the expo you are testing. The trows will be the same at full stick deflection so you can make a true comparison. 20% negative expo is a reasonable starting setting. (shows the expo effect and still has the controls move reasonably well before 50% stick throw)

You'll only try + expo on a fixed wing aircraft once. Its a mess because 1 click of trim (my radio has the mechanical trim and the digital trim) can act like moving the stick 50% of its FULL range.
Old 01-23-2003, 12:23 PM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

Thank you for the great tips and tricks......This web Forum rocks! [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif[/img]
Old 01-23-2003, 02:26 PM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

One more question........ What is the difference between "FM" and "PCM" radios? Thanks!!
Old 01-29-2003, 10:37 AM
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Default I'm in need of a radio....

boy i hope your ready for the ensueing conversation you just started.... i asked Fm vs Pcm about a year ago and it opened a 3 page discussion.

both "FM" and "PCM" operate on the FM modulation, it's how they use it that differs. Fm is actually PPM (pulse pulse modulation) PCM is pulse code modulation depending on how you look at it they both have ups and downs. using PPM you will see glitching when there is interference, PCM you won't see it because the reciever waits for a good signal and if it doesn't recieve it it goes into failsafe (preset servo positions). sufice it to say PCM outshines PPM at the fringes of reception but the receivers cost typically twice as much. most computer radios can transmit either mode.

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