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Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Old 04-15-2009, 11:21 PM
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Albatross1
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Default Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Hi All,

I am thinking of picking up a used 9CAP for a number of reasons and I am wondering if you could give me the benefit of your advice?

- This would be an upgrade from my 72 MHz 7c with the various programming benefits etc.

- I am thinking that a used one may be a good, economical entry to the 2.4GHz world because of the modules available; and I don't think I need what the 10C or 9303 would give me.

- Question is would it be overkill for a sailplane with REAF and an elec motor?

- Are the Tx module options good ones or do they have shortcomings (other than the latency one which seems to be not such a big thing for fixed wing)

- Are there issues with the non-Futaba modules?

- would it be a big mistake to look at a 7ch Fasst module since they are less costly than an 8ch? 7ch is enough for me for now.

- Never bought a used Tx before, do you have any advice to help me check out what I'll be getting? eg. questions to ask etc?

- where can I get a box and the packing for a used tx, eg. for shipping to factory?

Thanks for your thoughts,
Dave
Old 04-16-2009, 12:49 AM
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Campgems
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Dave, if you can lay hands on a good 9C, it is a good TX. I've got both the 9c and 9C super. There is a slight difference between them, in the area of Mixes.

I would not use another manufactures 2.4 module. They may work and work well, but I'm inclined to stick to one brand for known compatability. Especially if you have a problem. With one brand, the finger pointing goes away. The great thing about the 9C is that it doesn't obsoleate the 72 stuff. Just a module swap and you can use everything you have with it.

Don

Old 04-16-2009, 05:44 AM
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nedyob
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Hello Albratros 1,
Like Campgens stated above if you can find a good used 9C radio you will be getting a great radio.
Things to look for or ask the prev. owner.
(1) ask the seller to produce a service record on the radio,and what was serviced.
(2) It would be a good I idea to purchase a new TX battery after you buy the radio (added insuranse)
(3) check to make sure your RX and TX match, if its a 2.4 make sure the RX binds with the TX easily, and same thing with the 72 type.
(4) Check the condition of the radio face plate or front of the radio, if its a dull gold finish then its probbobly never been service by a rep. service center.
(5) Check all the switches, TX stick srings, check the condition of the screen,If it is dull looking when its powered up there could be something wrong.
Just some things to look for.
NEDYOB
Old 04-16-2009, 06:34 AM
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Albatross1
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Hi Guys thanks for the encouragement. Nedyob, what does the faceplate colour have to do with servicing? Did the factory start switching them out to silver ones? I've been wondering why some in pics are silver and others are not.

Thanks,
Dave
Old 04-16-2009, 09:00 AM
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

There is an advantage to using a Futaba FASST Module with a Futaba Tx as far as warranty and servoce. The 9CAP is reduced to 8 channels when you us any mfg's 2.4 module because the 9th channel, on the 9CAP, only works in PCM Mode, and the 2.4 Modules only work in PPM Mode.

There is nothing wrong with having a radio that has more capabilities than your present aircraft requires. I would assume that at some point, you will want to move on to more advanced aircraft and you will want a radio with more programming capabilities. There are many uses for extra channels when it comes to Programmable Mixing.

One thing to keep in mind is that as many pilots move to 2.4, there is less attention paid to the use of the Frequency Pin because you do not need one with 2.4. This puts Non-2.4 radios at more risk. Also, some people who run RC Boats, Cars, and Park Fliers are buying up the 72Mhz radios that are being sold for less as part of an upgrade to 2.4. This means that there is more opportunity for interference from the guy down the block from your flying field.

I have flown on 72Mhz since 1978. Buying a 2.4 module gave me the opportunity to gradually switch over to 2.4 and still fly on 72Mhz. After I replace all my 72Mhz Rx's with 2.4 Rx's I will abandon 72Mhz. The sooner the better.

Some of the 2.4 radios designed from the ground up have twice the Resolution as the older radios (1024 vs 2048) and there is an improvement in Latency, but I have not found these differences to interfere with my aircraft's performance. I fly Gas powered Scale Warbirds, Turbine Jets, and Gas Powered 30% Aerobatic planes. I do not fly in Competition, where it might make more of a difference.
Old 04-16-2009, 09:11 AM
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Hi Dave,
The 9C is a very good radio, it has features that the JR crowd would love to have in the 9303.
I would probably hold out for a 9C super, for no other reason that it would be a newer unit.
The 9C will not be overkill with your glider, you can never have too much radio[8D]
Since you fly an electric powered glider (assumption[]), the 9C will first allow you to setup a p-mix to give you a throttle lock for any electric powered model, great safety feature. Then you can assign a timer to the same switch to keep track of the total flight duration. A second timer can then be assigned to the throttle control to keep track of total power on time used for climbing, to keep you from draining the battery too low, especially if you use lipos, better than flying to LVC
I have both the TM-8 module and a Spektrum DM8 that I use for small electrics and the Vapor BNF model, both work flawless.
The price differential between the 7 and 8 channel modules is only 10 bucks, the killer is that if you buy a combo pack you have to get the 8 channel receiver and that is a lot more money if you only need 7 channel. I opted to get a TM-8 and R617RF separately from the LHS. I may be needing an 8 channel receiver sooner than I thought, I'm glad I'm ready with the TM-8.
You brought up the latency issue[:-]. If you were seriously into heli's, then the swash mixing with the 9C would be a concern. for fixed wing and gliders, not so much. Now in theory a conversion module has to add to some latency in the analog to digital conversion process, but many fell that that their models have a more "locked in feeling" even when using a conversion model using the Tx's PPM stream. I have a friend using a Spektrum module in an XP9303 and he is a superb 3D guy, he feels that the 2.4 conversion feels more solid, my experience with the 9Cs and FASST is the same.
Best of luck.
Pete
Old 04-16-2009, 03:17 PM
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Albatross1
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Hi Guys,

Great comments, thanks for the guidance. I hadn't thought the car guys would buy up 72 MHz units, that is a concern. I also really like the idea that it would be a flex arrangement whereby I could use both systems just by changing modules. I also love the idea of not having to worry (much) about glitching or external interference.

Can you tell me a little about the practicalities of the 2.4 receivers. Could the 2 antenna be run in a fiberglass fuse for example (not carbon fiber though)? How long would the antennae be? The one that has me scratching my head is the one perpendicular to the plane's longitudinal axis (i.e. out towards the wings). sailplane wingspan isn't a problem but it there may not be enough room in that direction if the wings are solid foam or ribbed & sheeted construction (eg, more than a couple of inches would pose some issues?). Can you suggest any tricks to deal with this. If it ran outside, would it catch something as it skids along the ground for a landing (crash or otherwise!). I don't have that sailplane yet but it is on the radar.

I read in the Futaba support forum that there was a recall on the 2.4Ghz modules in the early days. What was that about?

Thanks again for your help and patience.
Dave
Old 04-16-2009, 03:37 PM
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Hi Dave,
As to the antennae. With the fasst receivers you have two antennae that are 30mm long as far as the actually active element goes, the rest is just coaxial feed. I have a 2 meter sailplane with a fiberglass fuse (see avatar) one antenna is routed into the original tube for the 72Mhz antenna, the other is held on the side of the fuse in a short piece of fuel tubing glued to the side, the 30mm tip is then turned 90dg across the fuse, right in front of the wing hold down bolts. Also with these type antennae, if you do use a C/F fuselage, you can route the antennae outside easily. Spektrum has just released the first of 2 new C/F friendly models using the same antenna arrangement as Futaba and Airtronics as this works very well in this application, satellite receivers can be a problem to mount in a glass slipper.
Pete
Old 04-16-2009, 04:10 PM
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nedyob
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

answer to your face plate question. Futaba never switched to silver or chrom face plates, I thought that too when I saw some of the photo's, on two occastions after sending my 9C in for it yearly service they replaced the face plate becaus the gold plateing sometimes gets flackie, and they replace it. Sometimes at an added cost.
Its a great radio, I will still use my 9C (witch is by back up RX since Ibought my 10CAP.
NEDYOB
Old 04-16-2009, 04:33 PM
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GarySS
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

The 9C Super is a much better choice for an electric motor sailplane if you are wanting the ability to run CROW. The throttle cannot be moved off the left stick and the CROW is variable off of the left stick with the plain old 9C which is what I have. [:@]

Now with the 9C Super, Futaba allows either function to be moved to another switch/ slider of your choice. If you don't have an electric motor on your sailplane this is not quite a concern. Or if you only are planning on running a motorized sailplane without ailerons/flaps, this is not a concern.
Old 04-16-2009, 05:01 PM
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Albatross1
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

Man you guys are full of good info. The Super also seems to have a lot more preprogrammed mixes etc.

Electric sailplane with ailerons and flaps is my intention as the next step so I can make use of crow. Right now I don't have one with flaps or spoilers.

So if I understand the antenna thing correctly, the one could run perpendicularly for 30 mm and then the wire could be 'bent' to run lengthwise down the fuse, parallel to the coax of the other antenna, but probably offset by whatever distance (I guess 30 mm). Correct?

Thanks,
Dave
Old 04-16-2009, 06:34 PM
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Default RE: Used Tx buying tips and 9c as entry to 2.4GHz

You could do that, but is best to have as much distance between the two 30mm elements as possible, though not a lot of space in a sailplane. In my setup, one is on the bottom of the fuse, the other at 90dg is right up under the wing.
Pete

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