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Old May 06, 2014, 06:05 PM
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Spektrum recall

I started flying rc planes back in 2004. My first radio was a JR. I changed to Spektrum when the first 2.4 came out. I loved the idea of 2.4 and getting rid of the frequency board. I had no problems with my JRs or my first Spektrum or my first 6i. Problems began with my second 6i. I was losing airplanes due to what was apparently radio lockout. I found out that there might be a problem with "backwards compatibility". Still, I bought another 6i, the DSMX version. Again, problems with radio lockout and a recall for backwards compatbility problems. I sold that radio and bought a DX8 and I love it so far. Now, again, I hear about backwards compatibility problems with some current spektrum radios. Mine is not on the recall list and it has worked fine but. I am a little tired of having this hanging around in the back of my mind every time I fly. I am also tired of this Spektrum, Futaba, Hitec loyalty stuff. I just want the facts. How many radios are involved, what percentage of radio's sold is it, are there recalls with other brands and why does it keep happening (backwards compatibility). I can't afford to dump all my DSM2 receivers. Sorry this is a little long.
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Old May 06, 2014, 06:14 PM
AndyKunz's Avatar
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There have been 0 recalls of DX8's.

There was a Service Bulletin which you can still see on the website when you pull the product up. A handful (referenced online as "the lucky 400") had to have an update in order to enable DSMX.

We don't have problems with backwards compatibility. I really don't understand why anyone would say that. It's simply not true.

My DX8 is an original, pre-production unit. I was one of the "lucky 400" - so that means there were 399 others in my same situation. I can't tell you the number, but it's a tiny fraction of one percent of just DX8's. By the time you roll in all the similar radios, it's not even noise in the data.

If you check dates on the complaints, you will find that they predate the DX7S release which was just a few months after the initial DX8. If you look for DX7S problems, you will find they simply don't exist, even though it's a super popular radio too. The early DX8 problems had been fixed in the DX8 before the DX7s was released.

Andy
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Old May 06, 2014, 06:14 PM
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As a suggestion, you might want to break up your post into one or more distinct questions.
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Old May 06, 2014, 06:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyKunz View Post
There have been 0 recalls of DX8's.

There was a Service Bulletin which you can still see on the website when you pull the product up. A handful (referenced online as "the lucky 400") had to have an update in order to enable DSMX.

We don't have problems with backwards compatibility. I really don't understand why anyone would say that. It's simply not true.

My DX8 is an original, pre-production unit. I was one of the "lucky 400" - so that means there were 399 others in my same situation. I can't tell you the number, but it's a tiny fraction of one percent of just DX8's. By the time you roll in all the similar radios, it's not even noise in the data.

If you check dates on the complaints, you will find that they predate the DX7S release which was just a few months after the initial DX8. If you look for DX7S problems, you will find they simply don't exist, even though it's a super popular radio too. The early DX8 problems had been fixed in the DX8 before the DX7s was released.

Andy
Thanks for your help. My problems with two 6i's were very real. There were possible issues with older DSM and DSM2 receivers and at least one person at HH confirmed that when we spoke (sorry I don't remember who that was). The problems with the 6i's were on radios I purchased last year and the year before. I would like to add that everyone I spoke with at HH was very helpful and they are the main reason I continue to use the Spektrum radio. A fellow RC buddy mentioned the current recall and i thought I found something about that on line yesterday. It is certainly possible that I am responding to gossip and rumor, just trying to get the facts. Thanks again.
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Old May 06, 2014, 06:47 PM
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I haven't heard about a recall on the DX6i or DX8 either. I'm in Engineering; we'd be front and center if there were one.

The AR6000 DSM receiver is not at all compatible with any DSMX transmitter including pre-DSMX DX8's. We discontinued support for the original DSM products several years ago after offering a trade-up program to help consumers.

I still fly models with AR6100's (v1.6) using my DX8, DX9, and DX18 radios. There isn't a compatibility problem.

Andy
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Old May 06, 2014, 06:53 PM
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There was a problem with the first DSMX 9503's working with certain DSM2 receivers (I had problems with the 6200 receivers). I'm pretty sure the DX8 had the same issue at the time. No, it wasn't called a recall. Semantics.
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Old May 06, 2014, 06:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan D View Post
No, it wasn't called a recall. Semantics.
When it's a recall the CPS boys are involved, it's a big thing with lots of qualifications and lawyerese.

That's very different from a bulletin which covers a very small percentage of a product.

Andy
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Old May 06, 2014, 11:03 PM
Gary
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United States, MD, Salisbury
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There have been 0 recalls of DX8's????
Pure semantics! Hundreds of DX-8's were "recalled", they had major problems. My Gaui, with a AR6100 crashed if flew it longer than about 2 min. Everytime. My first Gaui 330 was a total wreak, after multiple crashes it was in shambles. My second 330 took major damage to motors and frame . It was actually Gaui that told me Spektrum was having problems with the DX-8, , as they were able to duplicate my problem. They suggested I replace my AR6100 with a AR6115, and that fixed it.

The DX-8 cost me over $500 in repair and replacement costs for damaged helis. It was travesty, the way it was handled. I had to send my DX-8 in, and didn't get it back for 5 weeks.
They claimed it was a problem with backward compatibility with some older DSM2 receivers. I never actually did get a real explanation, or apology. I had no trouble with the AR8000, that came with the radio.
You can call it a "Service Bulletin" but I had to MAIL in my radio. It was not something that could be fixed with a firmware update. This just reminds me of the recent GM problem. Oh, it wasn't really important that everyone with DX-8 and a AR6100 know that the combo is totally unreliable. Lets not offer any explanation, recall, or apology.
They did repair my RECALLED DX-8 and it worked fine afterward, with the AR6100. It just took me an entire month of emails and phone calls, most unanswered, before they finally issued a "bulletin".
But wait, it gets better mine wasn't in the first "bulletin". I called and Spektrum wouldn't issue me an RMA, no kidding. I had to wait another week or two before my DX-8 was added to the "bulletin", and I got an RMA number.

Andy was around, he remembers. Shame on you for trying to sugar coat this!

A "small percentage", was every DX-8 that was initially manufactured. Just imagine, for a moment, all the new DX-8 users, how many had the 6 channel DSM2 (AR6100) receivers, and all of them crashing, every time they flew. My two AR6100e Rx were brand new too!

Both these crashes were the result of the problem, but obviously didn't video most of them. The one that ended up in the pond and the full speed crash into the fence were the best!! The only good news is they never took off straight UP, so I didn't lose them. I was so disgusted i got my wife to video a few flights. How do you like the way I'm leaning left as my Quad go right, and into the bushes?
Quad crash.wmv (1 min 33 sec)

Quad_crash_2.wmv (0 min 31 sec)

It was really fun, up on a ladder, trying to get the Quad unplugged, as the props continued to shred my Wisteria. Failsafe didn't work either, obviously.
Spektrum DID fix the problem, the DX-8 has been around long enough for the bugs to be worked out. Sorry for my Rant....again, but when Andy said there was no "recall", a was flabbergasted. I couldn't let that slide!

http://www.horizonhobby.co.uk/aeroon..._bulletin.html
"may have a backwards compatibility issue that could cause a "hold"
Included in this list: DX6i/DX5e/DX4e/DX8 and DX7

Andy: "We don't have problems with backwards compatibility." "you will find that they predate the DX7 release" "I haven't heard about a recall on the DX6i"

This guy crashed his trek 450 over and over with a DX6i >>
http://www.helifreak.com/archive/ind.../t-443272.html
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Old May 07, 2014, 02:19 AM
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There was definitely an issue with DSM2 and the early DX8 models. Someting was changed in the RF protocol which caused lockups with genuine 6100 and 6200. I lost a model due to that. This problem was fixed sometimes in Q2 2011. I got my DX8 replaced with a new one, and this replaced one also needed an upgrade to the RF deck.

It should have benn a recall, because this isue was severe. Spek decided to release a service bulletin. I can't remember if I got an e-mail notification on this issue.

But also one fact: Every radio shipped with Airware 2.02 and above was not affected, because it was produced after the issue was adressed.
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Old May 07, 2014, 12:32 PM
Former Futaba employee
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Why would it be so hard for reps or manufactures to list any faults/issues on their blog and/or on the vendors page here?
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Old May 07, 2014, 02:07 PM
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It was discussed here when it happened. Extensively. 3 Years ago.
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Old May 07, 2014, 05:15 PM
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Mr. SloBuddy

It appears that "Recall" was not my best choice of words. My friend mentioned recall but I am now sure he was speaking of a service bullentin. And I am speaking of potential problems now, not three years ago. I have friends who have had absolutely no problems with their Spektrum radios and friends who are convinced that their Spektrum radio cost them expensive airplanes. I had issues with the DSMX 6i that I purchased 6 or 8 months ago. I actually gave that radio away and that person sent it to HH. They sent him a new one, explaining there was a problem with the RF deck. I should have sent it back but I was fed up with it. I suspect that most Spektrum radios are good units. I just want to be sure I can trust my new 8. So, if anyone knows of new issues with certain receivers please let me know. I can assure you, if you are one of the folks that have lost an expensive airplane (or two) and you think it might be your transmitter, you would be more sympathatic to this issue.
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Old May 07, 2014, 06:23 PM
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Call it what you want but it really was a recall exactly as explained above only with me it was a JR product going through HH for repair update. Since my 9503 was one of the first with the issue they flat denied there was any possibility of an issue. I paid shipping and it was corrected after some weeks. Unlike the DX people I was not given a receiver or as some were compensation for crashed aircraft, I lost a $1k helo due to it. Obviously still a sore subject especially when it's downplayed by a HH employee here on the forum. Andy is a great guy and a resource but in the end still a company man.
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Old May 07, 2014, 06:26 PM
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And yes it affected every 9503x at the time. It was 100% at that time, not a small percentage.
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Old May 07, 2014, 09:29 PM
Gary
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daughtry50: Since I got got my DX-8 back from the "service Bulletin" three years ago I have had zero problems, zero.
I'm sure they worked all the kinks out of the DX-8 by now. I only fly cheaper smaller helis on this though. I wouldn't buy a recently released Spektrum transmitter, like a DX-9. Lesson learned.
Evan D: Sorry dude! I got a "free" Rx, sold it on ebay. Still in the hole after crashes, but not as much $$ as you. For me it was more about all the time wasted, trying to diagnose the problem. Spektrum blaming Gaui, Gaui blaming Spektrum and everyone blaming ME (the noob 3 yrs ago).
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