Final dissertation on rc for subs...please! - RC Groups
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Nov 22, 2013, 01:08 PM
Registered User

Final dissertation on rc for subs...please!

Please be gentle with me, Im new to all of this.
Ok, I dont know what to do in regards to radio control fior subs.
From what I understand...AM 75 Mhz is SUPPOSED TO BE BEST for North American Submarine control (!!??!!).
Ok, soooo where the hell do you find such equipment????...especially the 7-9 channels that most subs need. I can find the 2-4 channel Futaba Attack units, but the most channels that are available seem to be 4...but good luck finding ANY receivers that have mote than 2 channel (although 3 ch SOMETIMES pop up).
Even Futaba cant give me a straight answer on this...initially I was told"use a 7 cap pcm 72Mhz unit that we will retune to 75Mhz, and a R168DF receiver. YAY!!!!..FINALLY an answer to all my problems...and straight from the horses mouth less.
Well, a quick internet check shows me that there are no versions of the R168DF receiver available in am or PCM...just good ol-fashion FM
A quick call back to Futaba , and THIS rep says "there is no way nows-adays to get more than 2 channels on 75mhz, AM (unless a elderly 4 channel Attack units shiows its ugly head on EPay), so yah might as well give up, there is NO interest in submarines in North America, except for a small handful of people" it true, have I unknowing joined a band of technology-disabled freaks!!!!???
Ok, now we know thats not true, as the submarine communities in USA, and Canada are thriving, and as soon as a sub comes up for sale, it is sold practically immediatley...and usually for a goodly amount of cash
Ok, in Europe Robbe has several beautiful units made especially for sub and boat use...
so to wrap up my rant, I am simply asking, here in North America what is a fresh-faced,virginal boy to do, that needs to control a submarine underwater..
...what is currently used???...
...what is the easiest way to go ??? there some sort of conversion of a unit that I have been missing????
Thanks so much guys for any help you can give.
I eagerly, and humbly await your response
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Nov 22, 2013, 02:56 PM
Michigan, USA
Roedj's Avatar
#1) Both PPM and PCM are FM. The difference is in how the data is encoded. Generally, PCM (pulse coded modulation) doesn't play well with a lot of the fail-safes used in RC subs. You want good ol' FM PPM (pulse position modulation) as the fail-safes work just fine.

#2) The Futaba R168DF (8 channel PPM FM) is an excellent receiver if you can it retuned for 75MHz.

#3) The harder part may be to find a transmitter. The Futaba 9CAPs occasionally turn up on evil-bay. But there are other brands available. Do a search for WFly brand among others.

Keep on persevering. The real gonad-check is the first time you take several hundred $'s out to some pond and intentionally sink it hoping it'll come back up.

Nov 22, 2013, 04:19 PM
Registered User
tchalfant's Avatar
Welcome to your adventure with submarines!

I have one of the Wfly transmitters and it is my primary transmitter,

What else do you need to get you on your way?
Nov 23, 2013, 07:56 AM
Registered User
OHHH..sooo many hours on the internet and EBay shot to hell with these answers...thank god

tchalfant-What do you use for a receiver??

Thanks for the Flysky info...I never tripped across that model. Since I have 3 subs in Drydock requiring a endless amount of servos, motors esc's etc etc, Im hoping to get a used TX/RX combo a bit cheaper...this is obviously the top of the line for me to strive for in the future

__________________________________________________ _______________

Roedj-Thanks so much for finally straightening me out on the frequency and modulation. I now have a large notation above my workbench
75mhz FM-PPM!!!.

It has also been added to the waistband of my underwear...just in case I forget.

I was also contacted by a gentleman in the states that can retune futaba transmitters and receivers into the 75mhz realm.

What can I 7 and 9 channel used units are now available for a $50.00 conversion charge ...the SKYS THE LIMIT!...err.... I mean THE UNDERWATER REALMS THE LIMIT!!.
Older, used 7 and 9 channel Transmitting/Receiving units are cheap as chips..even on EPay

Thanks guys
Nov 23, 2013, 02:36 PM
Registered User
tchalfant's Avatar
Yes getting your radio converted is an option and a good one at that. I have several friends that have done that.
As for receivers, I have used Wfly's RX and Sombra Labs RX. But, like much of the 75MHz vendors SombraLabs decided not to pursue our 75MHz niche anymore, something to do with profit....whatever that is :-)
Futaba is an excellent brand and their RXs are really good too.
Bottom line is you have many choices out there.
Sometimes the discussions get into the classic Ford/Chevrolet argument and I have seen people dislike one brand or another for personal reasons and not because of the quality of the product.
Since you have choices and you do not need to make that choice yet to get started, what sub do you want to build? Or are you retrofitting what you have?
Nov 25, 2013, 09:52 AM
Registered User
Since you have choices and you do not need to make that choice yet to get started, what sub do you want to build? Or are you retrofitting what you have?[/QUOTE]

I have actually been quite lucky in the Sub department, and have been given 2 used subs. Unfortunately both subs came stripped of all electronics. One is a smaller 2 foot sub, that is obviously meant to be a surface runner. ballasts
The other sub is about 5 feet 6 long, very heavy, and was made for a movie. It is absolutely beautifully crafted, made up of wood, and was carved out inside, and several water-tight compartments added. It uses 2 large juice cans as ballast tanks...gut electronics, or mechanics.
I have another surface running revell that was smashed up by the postal service on its way to me, that I am just waiting to purchase another Revell kit, to steal parts from.
I currently have 2 planes, and 2 airboats that got me initially started in all of this.

As a widowed disabled father of 2, the only thing that slows me down in my drydocks is the typical lack of the almighty $$$$.
Nov 27, 2013, 03:56 PM
Registered User**&P=ML

There are still Futaba 4 Channel radios on 75 MHz available. They plan on producing them as long as the demand is steady. So far, so good....
Nov 28, 2013, 12:24 PM
Registered User
tchalfant's Avatar
Thanks Thor! There you go another vendor with a new radio.
A sa side note, Thor is an expert in our hobby and I believe he uses Futaba exclusively. So, that is a pretty good endorsement.

I would recommend building a sub before retrofitting another persons sub, not even knowing if fixing up a studio sub will even be doable (wood unless really sealed well will cause issues). The Moebius Skipjack or Revell Skipjack in 1/72 scale (both the same model) is an excellent first sub. Tim Senecal has a great discussion about his. Here it is:
I understand about not having a lot of money, so it is a project that you can take your time on.

I am finishing up on my Skipjack build, doing pool tests to work out any issues, here is a video:
Revell Moebius Skipjack Pool Run 2 (3 min 33 sec)

I really hope you pursue this hobby, for me, it has been the most challenging, yet rewarding hobby I have done.
Dec 03, 2013, 05:47 AM
Registered User
profesorul's Avatar

Beautiful sub came out from Your hands.
Can You tell me what Camera did You used for underwater filming?

Dec 03, 2013, 06:06 PM
Registered User
tchalfant's Avatar
I made a case for the low cost 808 #16 keychain camera. I'll try to post pictures later.
Old Jul 15, 2014, 05:03 AM
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