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Old Apr 27, 2010, 08:45 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Mini-HowTo
Polk's Tracker III 2.4G Hack Job

I've been thinking about adding 2.4G functionality to my Polk's Tracker III for quite some time. I've scanned over the various hack threads here with out a lot of luck on existing examples done with a Tracker III. So after some in depth research and some questioning on another thread I decided to try it.

I used a module from a Fly Sky T6 radio I had that was not working properly and had defied my modest attempts at repairing it. Most of the information I needed for this was found in the "FlySky 2.4GHz Hack Idiot's Guide", that can be found on post 934 in the link below.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...3#post12420518

The other forum members reading that thread were also of great help with identifying the correct places to tie into to make this work.

Now a little about the Tracker III TX. Some people love them and some seem to hate them. I'm one of the people who think their great! They have been selling them new for $99 + shipping for a couple of years now and that's a great price for an eight channel radio with 99 model memory, built-in FM channel select-ability (no crystals required) and built-in FM scanner. So the only thing it doesn't have is 2.4GHz compatibility. So that's what I wanted to correct.

I'm starting this thread to help out anyone else who might like to hack a 2.4GHz module into there Tracker III. If your using a hack module from Corona or Assan or making your own from one of the modules out there please read up on the several other threads here about your specific module type. They all should be able to work in this radio and the modules that are made for hacking will be even easier to do then what I have done, because they don't need the extra circuitry that the FlySky module does.

Now for the photo's:
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Last edited by BlueFFF; Apr 27, 2010 at 09:34 PM.
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Old Apr 27, 2010, 09:01 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Some Programing required!

The Tracker III is a programmable radio and this actually helped me out with this, because it allowed me to make my connections at the trainer plug and not have to get into any of the other wiring. To use 2.4GHz instead of FM all you have to do is make a model program for your plane with the following settings.

Simulator Mode must be "ON". (This will disable the FM transmitter signal)

Trainer Mode must be "ON".

And you must enter "Student Mode" when you switch-on the TX by pressing down on "B" Mode key while turning on the TX.

Now once you have the TX set-up and on, you turn on the 2.4GHz power switch on the back of the radio and you should be up and running.

Binding: To bind to your receiver "hold down the green bind button when you turn on the 2.4GHz power switch on the back of the radio.

Well I hope this will be helpful to others who might want to do this. Please feel free to ask questions here and I will try to help with my limited knowledge.
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Last edited by BlueFFF; May 11, 2010 at 12:06 AM.
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Old Apr 27, 2010, 09:05 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
The way I have done this Hack job allows me all of the original functionality of my Tracker TX including the use of the simulator on my PC and Student Trainer abilities by just leaving the 2.4GHz power switch in the off position. The only thing I can't do with it is use it as a trainer in 2.4GHz mode, that would have to be done using FM only.
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 12:57 AM
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crazy8s's Avatar
Pennsylvania, USA
Joined Sep 2008
361 Posts
WOW!!!! What a great job! I have 2 of the Tracker III's and I have always thought that they were the coolest radio around. It has great functionality and programming abilities and for the price there is nothing around to come close to it. I had been thinking recently of hacking one of my old Futaba T6XAs's to 2.4 using the Assan DIY kit but now after seeing yours I just may do one of the Trackers instead.
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 01:47 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
crazy8s,

I have 2 of these radios too. I did not want to void the warranty on my original (5 years), so I bought a spare and did the hack job on that since the warranty is only for the original owner.

BlueFFF
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 02:04 PM
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Yablonsky's Avatar
Aliso Viejo, CA
Joined Sep 2009
575 Posts
Ah...now I see what you did with my Transmitter....

Very cool!!!

Wish I had thought of that rather than buying a new Spektrum DX7. I like the DX7, but I have an all new learning curve on all the programming and had to switch out all my Receivers.

Ken
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 08:11 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Yes Ken it's your transmitter. I was not even sure I could do this when I bought it from you, but it worked out fine. The main reason for doing this was because I have a lot of FM receivers and switching them out would not be cost effective and I wanted to enter the 2.4GHz world.

The control resolution of the servos is finer in FM then with the FlySky hack, but I'm sure that has to do with the module and receivers and not the TX. When I compare it to my other FlySky T6 it's the same. What can you expect from such inexpensive components. If after awhile I find I really don't like using them I will switch the TX over to a Corona hack module instead.

BlueFFF
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 09:15 PM
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DownInFlames's Avatar
Port Orchard, WA
Joined Feb 2002
670 Posts
I'm not up to date on this stuff. Is the Corona a better 2.4 system than the fly sky? Do you have a link to the Corona module that would be easier to do?
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 09:39 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Well I have not tried it myself so I really can't say which is the better module, but here are some links, so you can read about them and decide for yourself. Corona and Assan are the only two brands that I know of that make a module specifically for hacking other radios. A lot of people have also done it though using regular modules designed to fit in Futaba or JR radios.

Links to Corona and Assan Hack modules at HK:

http://www.hobbycity.com/hobbycity/s...RX_%28DSSS%29_

http://www.hobbycity.com/hobbycity/s...%28PPM_Only%29

DIY Hacking threads:

Corona
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1098611
Assan
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=994433
Here is one with info on FrSKY Hack module (I did not know they had one till now)
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1231927
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 10:26 PM
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Joined Mar 2007
484 Posts
Don't forget the FlyDream Modules at RC-MODULES.COM. Least expensive of the DIY modules @ $39.00 with your choice of 4, 6, or 8 channel receivers.

Jim
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Old Apr 29, 2010, 09:03 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Guess I missed FlyDream. Thanks JimnAz

HK has the Corona modules on sale for $29 with 8 ch receiver, that's why they were first on my list. I read they had some problems with there 2.4G stuff in the beginning, but I hear they work great now.
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Old May 01, 2010, 04:11 PM
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BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Well I just discovered a deal on the FLyDream hack modules and receivers on bidproduct.com. They are selling the hack module for only $20 and they have receivers from 4ch, 6ch and 8ch at $19-$22 each. I know there shipping is a little high, but it may be worthwhile to comparison shop before you buy anywhere else for this brand.

I have bought most of my cheap FM receivers from this same site and never had any problem with them. I just buy two or three receivers at a time since shipping seems to go up with the amount of money you spend instead of just weight. Not sure if this is always the case, but I always check the shipping cost before finalizing my order.

http://www.bidproduct.com/part/Produ...STAL_210b.html

BlueFFF
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Last edited by BlueFFF; May 01, 2010 at 07:04 PM. Reason: added link
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Old May 02, 2010, 10:00 AM
Registered User
United States, IA, Grinnell
Joined Mar 2005
560 Posts
Very good BlueFFF!!!!

I have two TIII's myself, but don't have the courage or the skill to do a 2.4 hack on one of mine. Besides, I've already bought a DX7 for the DSM2 BnF ultra micros. I have too many 72 RX's to chuck them all and replace them with 2.4 Rxs. I've had no problem with 72 other the years.

Very good hack BlueFFF. And thanks for posting your findings and directions.

S
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Old May 04, 2010, 10:39 PM
Up in smoke!
BlueFFF's Avatar
Greenville, TX
Joined Jun 2007
627 Posts
Your welcome swede,

Just trying to do my part and give back to this great resource. Besides I don't think most people realize what a great radio the Tracker III is. I think a lot of people get put off by the sort of basic black color scheme, it's not all glitzy like a lot of the more popular radios, but it does have a good feel to it if you ask me and when I fly I don't have time to look down. Kind of an ugly duckling.

BlueFFF
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Old May 05, 2010, 12:26 AM
Registered User
Las Vegas
Joined Dec 2003
281 Posts
Blue, I finally finished my tracker per your instructions and it works great, I haven't had a chance to fly much latlely, work is keeping me away from the field and that's a shame because we've had some really nice weather lately. I hope to keep testing the Tracker III for the next month or so before I go on vacation. The summers in LV are sometimes too hot for me so I leave for 9 weeks every year. I like the Tracker so much I have decided to get another one and leaving it stock. I converted the one that I have to FD 2.4 exclusively. It works out perfect since the TX is 8 channels and the receivers that I got from FD are mostly 8 channels I can use them on most of the stuff that I fly. Now if I could light up the display on the Tracker it would be the perfect radio for me.
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