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Sep 19, 2019, 06:14 PM
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RC Receiver Inside Metal vs Plastic Case?

Thought I would post here as tanks come about as close to what I am building—an RC lawn mower.

I am using a Spektrum DX6e and a AR620 Sport Receiver (no external antenna). As I progress in my build I am wondering what kind of case to use to house the electronics? These consist of a Sabertooth 2x60 Amp Regenerative Motor Controller, several RC Relay Boards, a LAC (Linear Actuator Control) board—used to control an actuator for deck height/grass cut length, a BUCK converter, an Arduino for some failsafe circuits, as well as various switches, terminal strips, breaker/fuses block, etc.

My question is with respect to the receiver. Considering that I will be no more than 30 feet away from the receiver when operating the mower, will I be OK to house the receiver inside a housing, and if so, should I avoid metal and opt for plastic? Or, should I move the receiver outside the case and mount it there?

Obviously, there will be a lot of dirt and grass clippings involved, so protecting the electronics seems to be a good idea.

Any suggestions appreciated....thanks.

- Peter
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Sep 20, 2019, 10:40 AM
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I've been running 2.4gh Spektrum equipment in my RC tanks (many of which are metal hull) since 2005 (the ORIGINAL DX-6). The rxs are buried deep in the electronics right on the bottom of the hull (aluminum tub). Never had any issues with interference, and I've driven them out to 150 meters. I used to fuss with routing the stubby little antennas, but don't any longer. They just work. I don't think you have any issues to worry about. Water is about the worst thing for 2.4 ghz (the submarine guys still use the 75mhz equipment, as it penetrates the water better), but fortunately, you aren't going there with the lawnmower.

As to electronics protection, I'd recommend you put it in an aluminum or steel project box (available from your local electronics store). You might want to put a small fan in for ventilation, if temp is an issue. While the electronics will interfere a bit with the 2.4ghz, it shouldn't be anything that causes an issue....especially at the short ranges you are talking.
Sep 20, 2019, 10:46 AM
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Thanks Jeff489. That's really helpful. Just what I needed to know.

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