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Old May 13, 2016, 05:00 AM
kestrel0222 is offline
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Question
Radio?

Hi everyone,

It’s been a while since I’ve posted here. I am re-entering the hobby of R/C flying.

I started flying back in 1974 and flew until 1987. My aircraft of choice was what is now called “classic pattern” and scale aircraft. Now that my children have grown and left the nest, I find myself wanting to re-enter this great hobby. However, this time, I will be flying sailplanes.

Obviously, a lot has changed since the late ‘80s, especially with radio technology. As I start to research which radio to purchase, there seems to be a lot more options.

Sorry in advance for the “simplistic” question, but what type of radio should I be looking at? I am looking for a radio system that has at least 4 channels (possibly 6 channels – for future use). Any advice/suggestions would be a great help.

Thank you,
Tom
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Old May 13, 2016, 06:31 AM
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Any radio you buy today will have way more features than what you're use to. Also, it will be on 2.4GHz rather than the 72MHz you were using in the '80s.

But you need to give a little more info to get a good recommendation. How much do you want to spend and what type of models do you intend on flying in the future? Do you want to have to figure out how to program models from scratch or do you want the radio to be pretty much pre-programmed for a glider?
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Old May 13, 2016, 08:05 AM
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Planning for 6 channels is a good idea for sailplanes. Most flown today have an electric motor in the nose, something not even though of back in the day.

You will also find that not many hobby shops will have glider kits... or can or will even get them for you. And what they can get cost more than a new car cost back when some of us started flying. What is available today are arfs, and very, very few are Gentle Ladies.

I just got a new model Spektrum DX8 Generation 2 transmitter. It was listed at $299 retail. It talks. And has alarms. Or will vibrate/buzz the warnings. And comes with a battery that's about four times the storage we had early on.

It also has special functions specifically for sailplanes, acro, helicopter and multi-rotor. The sailplanes sold are ARFs and often have 3 or more position flaps and a "crow" setting that trims both ailerons up (or down) when the flaps go down (or up). A bunch of the things we did back in the day to gliders to do those things were done with mechanics. Heck, the Oly II spoilers were pulled open by strings. Turns out all that stuff is easily done in the new transmitters by setting some switches. Of course, ailerons now need 2 channels instead of one, and we might have 4 servos in the wings. But the radio and it's special settings are what gets it all to work.

To see what's available take a look at an example. http://www.horizonhobby.com/product/...mode-2-spm8000 Amazing compared to yesteryear....
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Old May 13, 2016, 08:07 AM
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Look at a Graupner MZ-12. Great 6 channel transmitter and a good value. uses the HOTT system which have telemetry. Not only does the transmitter have the usual programmability but so do all of the receivers and servos. This means that if there is a feature that you can't program within the transmitter you can probably do it in the receiver. About $150.00 with a 6 channel full range receiver.
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Old May 13, 2016, 08:52 AM
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Spectrum DX6 has alot of features and priced well. there are many options on RX's. clone stuff also on DSM-2/ DMS-X.
You need to read some as many good radios out there. Horizon hobbies has great customer service and support.
Futaba has good sets. Airtronics name is gone but Sanwa is maker of them still around. Hi-Tech makes good radios. You most likely get alot of other input here.
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Old May 13, 2016, 09:07 AM
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Thanks for all your replies!!!! You all have given me much to think about and have given me a direction to go in.

As for "kits".... I plan on purchasing a kit like the SIG "Riser", or :Gentle Lady" as mentioned above to get acclimated again to flying. .

As far as future planes, I am a scratch builder... I have designed and built many model aircraft back in the 80's, this included scale and pattern aircraft. So, going forward, my plan is to build future models from existing plans that are widely available on the "web" today.

I flew a lot of scale models in the past, so I am leaning toward scale sailplanes.

As far as budget is concerned, I'm looking around $300 -$400 range.

Again, thanks for your replies,

Tom
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Old May 13, 2016, 10:06 AM
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check out www.scalesoaring.com for some great info on scale aero-towing. Neat stuff.
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Old May 13, 2016, 10:06 AM
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For scale models you probably want at least 12 channels. The Graupner mz-24 is on sale right now for under $400. Comes with a 6 and 12 channel RX, both with built in telemetry.

Tom
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Old May 13, 2016, 10:12 AM
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I would recommend a 7 ch radio at least. You would be covered for a motorized full house glider. One with mixes available would be good also.
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Old May 13, 2016, 10:16 AM
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The Riser is stronger then G/Lady. G/Lady is a good flyer but so is Riser. Riser is also cheaper. Main diff is wing. Either glider flys well.
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Old May 13, 2016, 12:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kestrel0222 View Post
Thanks for all your replies!!!! You all have given me much to think about and have given me a direction to go in.

As for "kits".... I plan on purchasing a kit like the SIG "Riser", or :Gentle Lady" as mentioned above to get acclimated again to flying. .

As far as future planes, I am a scratch builder... I have designed and built many model aircraft back in the 80's, this included scale and pattern aircraft. So, going forward, my plan is to build future models from existing plans that are widely available on the "web" today.

I flew a lot of scale models in the past, so I am leaning toward scale sailplanes.

As far as budget is concerned, I'm looking around $300 -$400 range.

Again, thanks for your replies,

Tom
If you are into scratch building, you might want to check out Outerzone.
http://www.outerzone.co.uk/index.asp if you don't know about it.

I have a very cheap, but a great little radio for my sailplane/glider. It is a FlySky FS-I6, it's a 6 channel. Mine came with a park flyer receiver. But you can get the full range rx also. I have had no trouble with.

But Turnigy has the same radio under their banner too. http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dproduct=74037 for 54.99. And the Turnigy TGY iA6B V2 full range receiver to enable all flight telemetry.
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Old May 13, 2016, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiesling View Post
For scale models you probably want at least 12 channels. The Graupner mz-24 is on sale right now for under $400. Comes with a 6 and 12 channel RX, both with built in telemetry.

Tom
Agreed.
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Old May 13, 2016, 03:03 PM
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Tom
You may want to ask yourself how comfortable your are with radio programming. We did not do that back in the day. There is a range of TX and programming features. I went with a simple setup 6 channel but 8 seems to be the new 6 and mine is not programmable beyond features for each aircraft. Other systems talk to you and appear to need the occasional software update.

It is just something to think about. I kinda miss metal TX and nicads.

JCW
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Old May 13, 2016, 04:02 PM
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Again, thanks to everyone that replied to my original post!!! Wow, so much great info!

JCW.... I think I will be going with a 6 or 8 channel system as you described above. I think this will be best for me at this time... And yes, I too miss the older systems with nicads and metal transmitters!

My last radio was a Futaba 6 channel that was all metal construction (transmitter). Before that one, I had a Kraft radio (showing my age).

Thanks for all your replies,

Tom
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Old May 13, 2016, 04:47 PM
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A builder? cool....

Take a look at the laser kits at http://www.skybench.com/index.html?h....com/home.html

Never had a Kraft but wanted one. Did have a galloping ghost that had an escapement on the other channel. Back then we didn't even dream of what todays TXs can do for $300.

As for how many channels.... My Avia2.5 was programmed into my DX8 to do crow and full wing camber changing and has a V tail. Ailerons took 2 channels. Motor, elevator, rudder and flaps needed 4. Truth is, it's a thrill to see all that working, but the sucker didn't get loaded in the car the last 5 flying sessions. I took a $115 Vista ARF to fly with the budding glider bunch since they think the Avia is cheating. And that (GentleLady clone) Vista broke 1000' again and again. It's just now gotten a Vario installed (since getting the DX8G2), but that's coming out tonight. They think that's cheating too.
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