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Old Jan 18, 2015, 05:48 PM
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Joined Jan 2015
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People who have many boats

What do you guys do about your many boats concerning transmitters? Do you have many receivers and a frequency programmable transmitter to cut down on expense? I'm getting back into the hobby and I have several boats. I don't want to buy anymore transmitters for any new ones.
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Old Jan 18, 2015, 06:26 PM
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Joined May 2012
467 Posts
Most radios these days have a model memory, some will hold the info for 100 models or more.
The better quality ones will not allow you to select and use the wrong model.
A little more complex than this but this is basically it.
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Old Jan 18, 2015, 07:34 PM
Big Boats Rule!
boater_dave's Avatar
Wisconsin
Joined Jun 2007
2,070 Posts
A bunch of my boats have their own systems so I can let friends run with me. This works well with sailboats. I also picked up several 2 channel trigger systems that I put in the simple power boats. I do have a few boats that share tx's, but I try to make sure they aren't boats I would be running at the same time. I don't have any boats (yet) that require the complex mixing of the super tx's, so the systems are nota lot of money.

Dave
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Old Jan 18, 2015, 10:12 PM
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NW NW Washington
Joined Aug 2007
735 Posts
I own one TX (mine is a Spektrum DX6, 2.4 gHz). It has memory for up to 10 models, which allows you to program throttle, rudder, lights, bow thruster, etc. specific to each boat. Being the older (7 years) model, it does not warn when I try to run the wrong boat for a given setup-some mental programming is still necessary.

I run 4 boats with mine, only one at a time of course. Each boat has its own RX and ESC, so no pulling parts out of one boat and going into the next to run.
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Old Jan 18, 2015, 11:35 PM
KC8WPF
CG Bob's Avatar
Euclid, Ohio, United States
Joined Sep 2004
3,849 Posts
45 boats and 15 radios. Six are RTR with their own radio. The remaining 39 are controlled with 10 transmitters. Only 4 of my transmitters have multiple model memory.

Six subs on one transmitter with 6 model memory. I'm only using 5 models as two of the subs have similar control functions (rudder and stern plane servos on the same side).

I have a 2 channel radio with 10 model memory, running 19 models. Unfortunately, this tx only provides for a 3 character model name. Model 1 = 12 boats; Model 2 =2 boats; Model 3 = 1 boat; Model 4 = 2 Boats; Model 5 = 1 boat; Model 6 = 1 boat. Near the receiver power switch or on the receiver, I install a label with the model number so I know which memory to select on the tx.

I have 3 other radios with no model memory, that I use on 8 other boats. The boats on each radio have identical motor/esc combos, so this system works well.

My recommendation for radios with multiple model memory is to write down each models settings as you program the model. A little memo note book is fine and can be stowed in your gear box when you go to the lake or a regatta. I've had to reprogram a radio twice.

First time - I sent the radio back to the authorized repair center for service. During the repair process, they erased 5 of my models and programed 5 test models into the radio. After the radio passed their test (flights), it was returned to me. Because I had programming written down, it only took about 5 minutes per model to reset my radio.

Second time - I was at a regatta, and another person had the same make and model radio as mine - even on the same frequency. The radio impound crew gave the other guy my radio and he went to prep his boat. He returned my radio to impound and picked up his radio. Later in the day, when I got my radio, the impound crew informed me of the error. When I got my radio back to my boat, I checked the radio settings against my note book, and found some had been changed. A few minutes to reprogram, and I was ready for the water.
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 12:00 AM
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United States, CA, Orange County
Joined Aug 2011
2,250 Posts
I have been running r/c boats for approx 38 years, my choice, and that of several of my friends is, each boat has its own TX & RX. This way, IF, and sooner or later it probably will, something happens to a RADIO, you just grab another boat, and keep on going. Especially important, if you have driven 400 to 1500 miles, to attend that event!!! I had radio failure in my YTL, at Tug Fest 2012, that left me down to one boat. If, I had been using the same radio for both boats, it could have been zero. Plus, each radio is custom set-up, just for that boat. NOW, IF you only "play," and are close to your house, then it really does not matter. I also, let friends run my boats, and, let some of the locals at San Francisco, run them. Impossible to do, with only one TX.
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 04:28 AM
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Blackpool, Lancs
Joined Feb 2006
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I always try to set my boats up to work with my transmitter, rather than the other way round. At one time, if fitting a new boat out, it was cheaper to buy a complete set of RX, TX, servos, crystals, battery box and loom than to just get the separate bits, effectively giving a "free" TX.
Having said that, I have one transmitter dedicated to sailboats with a proportional winch (no left stick spring) one with (nearly everything else) and the new kid on the block, a 5 channel 2G4 set for the ones that need it.
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 09:00 AM
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Joined May 2012
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I have one buddy that does what a number of you guys do, a radio for every boat. What a massive pain in the butt!
Unless you have a lot of older equipment running this way makes no sense to me what so ever, with what modern radios are capable of why not take advantage of it.
I would never go back to the days of making sure my frequency is clear, that crap went the way of the bag cell phone!
Maybe I should dig into the junk bin and sell you guys a bunch of antique radio gear, have txs and rxs going back to about 1980, might be able to fund another new computer radio! This one with 150 model memory!
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 10:39 AM
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United States, CA, Orange County
Joined Aug 2011
2,250 Posts
Sibe......

WHAT, makes you assume, that those of us using multiple radios, that they ARE, OLD, FIXED CHANNEL, radios??? Almost ALL of my radios ARE 2.4, and 4, are high end, Computer Radios! Not $29.00 from HK.

In almost 40 years of running, I have only had: 2 radios fail (due to moisture and age), about 6 speed controls fail, AND, "wore-out", 2 rudder servos. AND, I run my boats, as my LCM-6 based tug, has well over 800 hours of use, in all types of weather.
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 12:36 PM
GILL
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United States, NJ, Hopatcong
Joined Aug 2005
2,697 Posts
As a person with 123 boats and 62 airplanes. I only use a total of 6 radios.
1 is a 1956 single channel on 27 MHz (my 1st purchased radio). All the others are 2.4 or have been modified for 2.4. You can see some at www.jsgill.net
I too set up models to use the same radio when possible.
1. 1 channel 27 MHz (1956) 1 model
2. Robbe Terra Top 8ch 24 function on 75/2.4 3 models
3. Polk Tracker III 8ch 75/2.4 23 function 99 model memory 99 models
4. Polk Tracker III 8ch 72/2.4 99 model memory 62 models
5. Hobby King 3ch wheel 2.4 15 models
6. Hobby King 2ch wheel 2.4 6 models
I do have spare radios
Robbe Terra top 8ch with 16 function
2 Tracker II a 75 and a 72
Hobby King 4ch
The Polk radios are channel programmable.
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 01:10 PM
r/c ships and workboats
bellingham, wa
Joined May 2006
4,697 Posts
It comes down to personal choices. I have different radios for different boats. but that is because I like to take multiple boats with me to an event and allow others to play as well. some are set up for the different style of boats as well since they need to be customize and do not translate working well for other applications. Some are simple older 2 channel radios , a couple older frequency style, and a couple newer ones. It really comes down to how much $$ you have invested and if you are a casual player or if you travel and compete as some of us do.
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 05:49 PM
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Joined May 2012
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Well I've been in the hobby as long as you, get over it.
Raced in two countries......
Raced in 100+ heat and raced with ice forming on the decks of the boats....
I can't count how many failed escs. More than 6, so what do I win? Don't believe me you can come over and smell the hulls!
Way more than 2 servos, so I must win that one again, ran nitro outboards for too many years. That eats servos for breakfast.
Had multiple boats fully destroyed, had brand new ones run over by other boats at 50+ mph.
I measure the life of my boats in 10s of hours not 100s, price of competition.
I do respect what you scale guys do in regards to building, some true brilliance and dedication, but man it looks boring as watching paint dry running them.
Unless it's sailing (yep to that to!) boating begins at 50.
Well I kind of guess I also do scale boats as I built a lobster boat to tow back stranded race boats.
I also fly helis and planes, spent years racing indoor 1/12 scale carpet cars and 1/10 buggies.
And all you seem to do Captcb is scale boats?
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Old Jan 19, 2015, 06:17 PM
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United States, CA, Orange County
Joined Aug 2011
2,250 Posts
Sibe,

You missed my point, which was: even if you buy the best equipment you can, stuff still FAILS! AND, that is why you don't want ALL you boats on one radio. I do way more hobby stuff than just Scale Boats. But Scale Boats, and Regatta Competition, IS, what I LIKE to do, and excel at. Almost every boat I own is scratch, or semi-scratch built. And, as far as "paint drying", I will gladly hand you the transmitter to a 24'' tug, tied up to an 8 ft., 350 lb. barge, in a 10 - 15 knot wind, and you can show me how to get a 100 point run, on a course, you had not even seen, till 20 min. earlier?
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 10:23 AM
GILL
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United States, NJ, Hopatcong
Joined Aug 2005
2,697 Posts
I agree with CAPTCB. In my over 60 years, I have traveled all over the world, I raced cars model and full, my trophy's date back to 1976. I raced boats models and full size, The planes I fly range from sport pylon to scale.
More then 80% of my over 200 RC (cars, trucks, heli's, planes, boats) models are scratch or modified kit. All are fully equipped and ready to run.
I gave up racing almost 20 years ago, I was tired of doing the same thing, spending 3-4 days setting up and a couple of hours going around in circles. I have always loved scale and I find it a real challenge to have a boat look like the full size and have as many functions, in some cases over 30.
The fun comes when you try and operate a multi function model in a life like manner. Towing is a real challenge. Can you operate a boat with 1 button, controlling forward- stop-reverse and right- straight- left steering, my 1956 F& M radio has 1 button and a off/on switch, I use a boat-a-matic actuator. For that matter I built my 1st radio (tube) transmitter and receiver.
I can say that I have had more then 100 radios, ESC, and servos fail. These would be from every manufacture starting with F&M electronics (1955), Kraft, Citizenship, Cox, Futaba, Airtronics, JR, Polks, and so many more. IT HAPPENS whether you spend 10 bucks or a thousand on a piece of equipment. I have had a $20 radio out preform a $900.
I don't even want to think about the money I spent on equipment over the last 60 years.
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 11:32 AM
"day ain't over yet-"
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Western N.Y. winemaking country
Joined Jun 2005
9,788 Posts
My radio gear dates back to nearly the stone age, and I think that I have over a dozen sets in a cabinet downstairs, mostly 2-channel units that I won in contests over the years. Most of them I've never used. Nothing really high-tech, but they work for what I want them to do---.
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