Posts Tagged ‘Radio Control’

Sneak Peak at a new N-Tech Jets Model

December 23, 2011

It’s a prototype Hawk. Retracts and struts are included and installed. This one will be flown first with a JHH fan and then will be flown with some top secret Larry-Special fan equipment. More to come soon. Enjoy the pics!


Airtronics and Global at AMA Expo 2009

January 16, 2009


The AMA Expo (formerly AMA Convention, formerly IMS/Pasadena Show) wrapped up another great event last weekend in Ontario California. There were LOTS of attendees, many standing in very long lines to get in as soon as the show opened both on Friday and Saturday.  It is always great to have so many hobbyists at one place. There really are a lot of modelers in So. CA!


At Airtronics, we showed off the latest prototype of the SD-10G 10 channel 2.4GHz radio from Airtronics. This radio, now planned for an April release, attracted a HUGE amount of interest. Pilots collected as I walked through the features and as we discussed the radio’s features. As we get closer to April, we will be able to distribute more and more information, but here are the basics:

10 channels, 2.4GHz (full range of course!), backwards compatible with the RDS8000 receiver (as well as the 3 other 2.4GHz receivers in development for the RDS radio), and has advanced programming for Sailplanes, Aero, and Helicopters.

The initial negative feedback was that it is too shiny! This is not the final finish! The final finish will be more like the matte/textured chrome look on the Stylus. So, don’t worry, it will not blind you in the sun. So, while it might look a little bit like a Cylon from Battlestar Gallactica now, in production, it will be more “refined”.

What we like most about it is the ease of programming. The menu structure is easy to follow, the concepts behind how to setup the model are simple, yet powerful, and the list of features is LONG. From tons of curves, to triple rates, to assignable switches, to 5 flight modes, there’s a Lot to be happy about with this radio. 6 servo wings, twin engine aircraft, dual elevator servos, 4 servo ccpm swash plates, JR HELI 140 degree swash plates, 9 point throttle curves in all modes, name-able flight modes, etc will be no challenge for this radio as these things are all built in. And, you’ll even have the ability to share setups with other SD-10G users both at the field and even online at home!

I know I’m a tease because I’m not telling you more. I simply can’t just yet.  But truly, this porcupine with extra switches in places no other radio has, I think has the ability to satisify Many Many Many modelers in just about every facet of the hobby.

At the show over the weekend, we had Jack Albrecht, Craig Kaplan, Russ Greaves, and I all working our shifts at different times throughout the weekend. We all agree that this show was surprisingly well attended and that the overall excitement about the new 10channel was motivating and re-assuring. We’ve all put a lot of work into Airtronics and we’re glad to see the pilots respond so positively to our new “baby”! Truly we hope to have it out for Toledo and we’re looking forward to seeing you there!


Global Hobby Distributors (the whole-sale division of Hobby Shack) distributes 10’s of thousands of products to dealers throughout the country including of course our star: “Airtronics”. Of course, we had many other items that we exhibited as well.

From Ultrafly we showed of the Cirrus SR-22 and the Speark. Both are truly beautiful aircraft, the detail work is amazing, especially for aircraft in this more affordable electric category!

From Phase 3 we showed the Little Spitfire ParkFlyer and the new (on their way, we’ll have them by the end of the month!) P-40. The P-40 is the latest aircraft and it features some awesome accessories already built into the plane! It has mechanical retracts installed, a brushless motor, and a 3 cell lipo. All of the electronics are installed and ready to use. All the pilot ads is his transmitter and receiver. If you have an RDs8000 or plane on getting the new 10 channel, note that planes like this will be perfect for our new, very affordable 6 channel park flyer receiver or 7 channel economy receiver. You will soon  have more options for Airtronics which will be perfect for applications like these!

From Wattage we showed off the new Sea Vixen Ready to Fly. This plane is a nice stand-off-scale version of the British Sea Vixen Jet. This version is a pusher jet with a brushless motor and 3 cell lipo. It even includes a balancing DC charger. The plane bolts together in just a few hours and flies quite well with its brushless power system.

Kinda hidden in this picture, we also had on display a selection of KMS from the BIG motors that can replace a 45cc gas engine to the tiny little guys for the park flyers along with Impulse batteries. From EF Heli, we has the Cypher and the MASH. Both great helicopters in their class, the Cypher is simply the best 450 heli out of the box (I know, I’m opinionated).  Cyclic and pitch response is outstanding.

The show really blew some air up my skirt, I must say! I’m motivated in my job by the positive effects our products have on Modelers. And when I talk to so many who are so excited about the hobby, it simply spurs us on to work harder and to give you new, great products.

There’s a Ton of great stuff coming this year, I’m glad we were able to show some of it at AMA. But mostly, I was simply glad to see all of you there. Thank you all for coming by!


F3J Worlds 08

June 7, 2008

Saillplanes are an amazing discipline within our hobby. These high-end, high-performance, seemingly endlessly complicated aircraft require the latest techniques for design and construction to have an even remote chance of being competitive. The skill to set one up and fly it properly is amazing as well.

The F3J Catagory for World-Competition is an interesting part of the competition sailplane world. This is where sailplanes are hand-towed and then compete for a set time and then end the flight with a precision spot landing. Cool stuff.. really.

The worlds are at the end of this month in TURKEY! Talk about a long jet-flight to then fly in highly intense competition for a week!

First, if you haven’t done so, Visit the Official Team USA F3J site! Airtronics is a sponsor of the team and sponsors several of the pilots. Remington, Perkins, and Mc Gowen for example. They need your support and have a raffle as well as T-shirts and hats for sale to raise funds.

There is also a website with more information about the F3J Worlds. Check it out!

Also note that several Canadian Team pilots are sponsored by Airtronics as well. You have to wish our friends from the North good luck as well!!! We want a good showing for all of North America! Don’t let the Western Europeans keep the glory for themselves!

So, please support the USA F3J Team and check out this amazing aspect of competition flying!

Good Luck to All the Pilots!!!

2.4GHz Band Saturation

December 31, 2007

It seems possibly the most misunderstood aspect of 2.4GHz radios is how many can be used at one time and if that saturation point is met, what happens?

1. The number of radios that can be used at 1 time is LIMITED. This exact number of radios that can be used at 1 time varies according to several factors, but indeed it needs to be know that the band can only handle a limited number of radios in-use at 1 time. (more on that a little further down…)

2. IF that saturation point is reached, generally “more” radios will not be able to be “turned on”. They will search for an open frequency, will not be able to find one, and will simply wait until one is available. In “some” conditions, the FHSS systems might turn on, but will be slow (It’s OBVIOUS)…

 Some companies have talked more about this than others, but here’s the scoop…

The high-output portion of the band we use in 2.4GHz (as regulated by the FCC) is split up, somewhat arbitrarily by our systems (each company has their own way of dividing up the frequency band).

 FHSS radios bounce around the band, Spektrum and other DSSS or DSM systems simply chop it up into about 80 frequencies (in the aircraft side of things, they use 2 of those frequencies…)

So, indeed only about 39 DSM/DSSS aircraft systems can be in use at 1 time if Spektrum is the only radio in use. (see a link to Spektrum and a quote from their website at the bottom).

 If you mix all the different brands and their proprietary type of signal/system, generally, the total number of radios that can be on and function 100% reliable without slow down, etc. is about 36 for aircraft (surface gets more because when only surface systems are in use, Spektrum is only using 1 frequency at a time instead of 2).

Now, that 36 number can vary, but in our practical testing, we’ve found it’s right around 36-39.

At that point, the DSSS and DSM systems will no longer find a clear signal and the other brands start to slow down a little.

 What it means: EXCERSIZE frequency control at major events or busy flying fields!

Is 2.4GHz better? SURE, OF COURSE!!!. If too many radios turn on, either they will not find a frequency and will not transmit or they will work but just with a little delay (thus you’ll see it and probably just turn off anyway) unlike 72MHz where if some one just “turns on” without concern, he can knock you out of the sky!

So, 2.4GHz is GREAT but there are still limitations and you and your club/flying field might want to consider those limitations.

I hope this helps.


Note these quotes from Spektrum brand: 

Quote from Spektrum:

What happens if the band is full (80 users for surface or 40 users for aircraft) and I turn on my transmitter?

In the unlikely event that all channels are occupied, the next transmitter will scan the band indefinitely until open channels are available. The transmitter will then acquire the channel(s) and begin transmitting. Only then will the system connect.

Spektrum, DSM, Horizon, are all products copyrighted by Horizon Hobby.

 I’m only mentioning them here to help create wider understanding of the hobby.

DSSS, Airtronics, Sanwa, are all copyrighted by Sanwa Japana and used by Global Hobby with permission.

(I’m not trying to step on anyone’s toes here!)

ModelTech Mini Mach Racer

December 26, 2007

Mini Mach RacerRuss Greaves and I took out the new Model Tech Mini Mach Racer and put it up for its maiden voyage.

OK, it’s REALLY important that the CG be right on a little plane like this:) Yep, REALLY important… (EDIT: Customer says I’m idiotic because I didn’t post the CG here.  So, here’s the CG: 145mm.. )

When we get prototypes we usually get ZERO documentation from the factory. So, we guessed on this one and got it wrong. The good news is, when it went totally out of control on launch, it was no where near anyone (we always launch well away from ANYONE, pilots included) so there was no danger.

The other bit of good news is that this plane and the prototype motor we flew it with was very durable. We launched, it did the tail low, nose up, wing-tip-stalling dance, before it simply pin-wheeled into the ground, nose first…

NO damage! Got lucky there. So, we moved the battery forward and this time, it flew right out of Russ’s hand, PERFECTO!

Wee the fun we have with prototypes! Anyway, it was AWESOME. 80-90 MPH (based on the speed of the other planes and the speed of which other ‘known’ entities fly at) is my guess.

Lands easy, launches easy, flies very fast, is stable in the entire speed range, and was simply a blast! This is a fun plane to fly.

Now we’re waiting on a new sample with some creature comforts to make it easier to use for the pilot (removable fins and magnet attached canopy hatch so that the plane will easily go back into it’s box and the battery will be easily accessable).

Anyway, cool plane, due in probably May.

Whaddaya all think?