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This is an incredible break through in technology which will allow you to never need to pull a pin before flying, never shoot someone down by accident, or have some shoot you down by accident. Also, testing has proven that there is less interference with SPEKTRUM than the normal 72 MHz radios!

We offer 3 different JR Radios. The JR DX7 radio is the least expensive radio which will work well for aerobatic models. With all 3 of these radios you can set up your aerobatic plane very easily and have enough computer functions to mix out most of the odd tendencies that your airplane has. Your plane will probably pitch to the belly when you apply rudder. These radios can "mix" that out by using the rudder stick as the master and the elevator as the slave. As you move the rudder to the left or the right, the elevator will come up a little to compensate. Your plane probably will roll with the rudder, usually it rolls right with right rudder and rolls left with left rudder. The computer radio can fix that.

 

The main differences between the radios:
1) How easily you can program in a fix
2) How well the fix works
3) How many channels can be operated.
4) How easily you can change from one set of flight conditions (dual rate, expo, flaperons) to another
5) Cost (you knew that!)

Of most importance:
Is how many channels you need. If you need 9 channels, if you need no other functions, you need a 9 channel radio. You have to ask yourself - how long am I going to keep this radio, and in that time, what is the most channels I will ever use.

JR RADIO IMPORTANT DIFFERENCES IN A NUTSHELL:

FEATURE 7202 9303 10X
Flight modes 2 3 5
Gyro control 2 3 3
Points on throttle curve 5 set 7 set adjustable (I use only 2 points)
Independent Expo no yes yes
Countdown Timer no yes yes

 

We replaced the JR 10X on my 35% Extra 260 and replaced it with a DX7. I have to say, it was great!

I am always so conscious about my radio being off so that I don't interfere with others, replacing the pin so others on the same frequency can use the frequency, having the pin when I'm flying, being shot down, extending my transmitter antenna, electrical interference from engine ignitions or smoke pumps or servo extensions, and routing the Rx antenna. No longer do I have any worries!! It is totally awesome. It's like having a ball and chain removed from both arms and both ankles. This is the only way to go!! Once you experience the freedom that this technology offers, you won't believe that you waited so long to make the switch! This is one of the biggest technology breakthroughs ever! Better than the change to FM from AM radios, or digital from analog servos.

TBM battery testing of the JR Spektrum Radio
We found that your transmitter battery will last 2 1/2 times longer with the new Spektrum module! We performed a series of tests and found that the standard rate of battery drain using a 72MHz module is 2 1/2 times higher than when a Spektrum module is installed. The current used by a JR 10X using a 72 MHz module is 170 MAh, while the same radio with a Spektrum transmitter module installed is just 70 MAh. Therefore the standard 1100 MAh battery pack in the JR 10X will last an incredible 15+ hours using Spektrum technology! Compared to the 6 hours of the 72 MHz modules, this is really great! I use a 2800 MAh LiIon battery in my 10X, so I can charge up just once a year or so! :)

TBM Range Testing of Spektrum - During testing using the JR Flight Log, I found that it is impossible to get the receiver to not receive any signal at all unless I turned off the transmitter at the switch. Line of sight testing by others shows that the range is way farther than necessary. It is impossible to see even the largest glider at a mile, so anything beyond that is superfluous. This is a given. Spektrum has a range way beyond a mile. So I decided to do some tougher testing. I put the transmitter in the house and put the plane in a detached garage 100 feet away. Both buildings are hurricane resistant. They have concrete walls reinforced with steel. Cell phones and portable phones do not work well in the house or garage and portable phones don't work at all from one building to the next. There is virtually no signal. However, the Spektrum still worked perfectly! It was unbelievable.

The JR Spektrum Flight Log was used to determine the signal quality and the Flight Log worked extremely well. Only with the JR system can you not only see but you can also record any hits. I am very impressed! JR has even raised the bar by categorizing "hits" into 3 levels! I the past we have only known about "hits" which is where the Rx loses signal and either the servos go crazy (PPM/FM) or they lockup/hold (PCM). Since going into hold is virtually impossible to have happen with Spektrum, JR devised a system to see when one of the antenna's loses signal, this is called a "Fade". If all antenna's (2 to 4) fade simultaneously but not long enough to put the Rx into "Hold", this is called a "Frame Loss". Finally if the signal is lost for about a second, the Rx goes into the familiar "Hold". Those are the three levels - Fades, Frame Loss, Hold.

With the transmitter and Rx in two different buildings, the signal was reduced to the point that the JR Flight Log was showing some fades, about one every 20 seconds. Keep in mind that there are 3 independent antennas (you can add a fourth if you desire), and each antenna is monitored not only by the JR Flight Log, but also by the amber light which is next to the antenna. I discovered that when the JR Flight Log shows a hit that the amber light blinks off. By putting up the interference of the two buildings, the light blinked occasionally, and the JR Flight Log recorded an antenna fade. What's really neat is that the Flight Log keeps track of the fades independently on the 3 antennas. For instance the Flight Log would tell me that I got 47 fades on antenna A, 84 fades on antenna B, 18 fades on the left remote antenna, and 15 on the right remote antenna. This is great stuff for geeks!

Then I put it to the real test. With the Rx and Tx still in the two different buildings, I covered Rx's with bricks, wood, steel plate, chicken wire, five hundred 4' servo extensions and more in hopes of blocking the signal. While I was able to increase the amount of antenna fades a little, I was never able to get even one frame loss (all antennas losing signal momentarily), and of course it never went into hold either. I spent a lot of time trying to get a frame loss. In the hours I tested it, I had hundreds of fades on each antenna, but there was nothing that I could do to block the signal to all the antennas at once, or even block the signal to one antenna repeatably. And believe me, I tried!

With all the benefits of the Spektrum system I will never use 72MHz again!

Important features to have (and use):
One feature which is important to have which lesser radios don't offer is "dual elevator". This function allows you to have the two elevator servos work together on separate channels. The reason that this is important is that it is much easier to set up the elevator if you use two separate channels. Using the end point adjustments and the trim function, you can easily get the elevators to move together. With the DX7, you must use mix 5 or 6 so that the trim will work. If you do not use mix 5 or 6, or if you have a lesser radio, when you use the trim button on the front of the transmitter to give a little up or down elevator, only one of the two elevators will move with the trim. This forces you to use a Y-harness, most likely a reversing Y-harness. This makes matching the elevators more time consuming.

Throttle curve: All 3 radios also offer throttle curves. The carburetors on gas engines are not linear at all. At 1/2 open, they are at 85% power, and little happens between 1/2 open and fully open. Some people brag about hovering a 1/2 throttle, well, that's really almost full throttle! I have the throttle stick move the carburetor quicker at the beginning and at the end. This makes the throttle more linear. The DX7 has limitations as to how the curve is set while the 10X does not, so the 10X can give you the best fix.

Exponential: is available on lesser radios, but the 10X allows the exponential to be set independently in both directions which I call "independent expo". The most important use for this is with the elevator. I use 30% expo for up elevator (on low rate) but use no expo for down elevator. This makes the plane "feel" the same whether I am upright or inverted. When I'm upright I pull a little on the stick and the plane goes up a little, when I'm inverted and I push the same on the stick the plane goes up about the same. I also have more down elevator travel than up elevator travel, like 12 degrees down and 10 degrees up, but that's available with all radios. You also need to set up the expo so that the feel of the controls is the same at center when on low rates or high rates so that you can fly the plane somewhat like "normal" when you are in 3D rates. I talk about that in "How to set up your radio".

Flight Modes: Dual Rate and Exponential are important to have. The BIG and I mean BIG advantage of the 10X is the ability to have the ailerons, elevators and rudder all go from high to low rate (and in between) at the same time by flipping just one switch, not three switches. This is a BIG advantage (did I say that already?). The ability to control all the rates at once is called "Flight Modes". To see how to set up your radio for 3D, snaps, spins, normal flying, etc. and the importance of flight modes, see the "How to set up your radio page".

Flaperons: All 3 radios also offer "flaperons" so that you can mix the elevator to the ailerons to use the ailerons as flaps for extreme aerobatics. Some lesser radios offer this as well.

Stick Adjustments: my preference is to adjust the spring tension to as high as possible and make the sticks as long as possible and use a transmitter tray. I suggest that you do the same. This will give you the most precise control.

PCM vs FM: There are arguments both ways about which is best. People who say FM is better are idiots. Use PCM. If someone sees you using PCM and says you should be using FM, tell him I said he is an idiot. Just to clarify - it is OK to use FM, it is acceptable for many planes, but it is not better than PCM. Both systems will get radio hits. When an FM receiver gets hit it reacts wildly and ALWAYS does a violent death dance straight to the ground, tree or worse. Hopefully the hit is short and you can save it before the plane impales itself into your car. PCM simply ignores short hits and uses the last good signal to operate the plane so it does not do the death dance. If the hit is a second or two, it uses the last good signal, so if you were flying straight and level, you still fly straight and level. This is what you want it to do! See below in setting up your failsafe. If it never gets a good signal again, try to sell the plane immediately, don't wait for it to hit the ground. Yelling FORE is also acceptable, but no matter what, yell something so that people can avoid being hit and can shout out a bid before it hits. Believe me, FM would not have helped in this case, it just would have done the herky jerky before impact. If your idiot friend says "I told you so", then calmly go over to his plane, jump on it several times, and then say "Gene told me to do that because you are not only an idiot but also a complete ass".

Gyro: I find using a gyro to be very helpful in learning how to hover. Connecting the gyro to the rudder is easiest if you have just one rudder servo. If you connect the gyro to the elevators, then you must Y-harness the elevators together out of the gyro, and thus you have a problem getting the elevators to move together. You must set the gain as high as possible on the gyro to get it to help during low speed maneuvers. The problem is that you cannot fly with the gyro on. The high gain will cause the rudder to go crazy in normal flight. You must switch the gyro on just after you start to hover and must turn it off when you exit from the hover. Therefore you must be able to access the gyro from the transmitter.

Setting up Failsafe: You must set up for failsafe from your radio. Set all the servos to hold their last position except for the throttle which should go to idle, unless you are at Joe Nall where you set the engine to kill. Do not set the engine to kill unless you are instructed to by the field or event you are at. 99% of the time it will come back and you need the engine running to make that dramatic save!

1 or 2 receivers? Just use 1. There is an advantage to using 2 receivers in some failure modes, but it's not worth the other problems it causes. Use 2 battery packs on one receiver. This is about as safe as it gets. Be sure to glue or tape your Rx crystal in place, as they have been known to fall out and when that happens, you are in serious trouble.

Required
1) throttle
2) left aileron - can be 1,2 or 3 channels if you choose a separate channel for each servo

3) right aileron - can be 1,2 or 3 channels if you choose a separate channel for each servo
4) left elevator - can be 1 or 2 channels if you choose a separate channel for each servo
5) right elevator - can be 1 or 2 channels if you choose a separate channel for each servo
6) rudder - can be 1,2,3,4 or 5 channels if you choose a separate channel for each servo
Remember that you typically cannot use a 6 channel radio for the above because one of the outputs is an on/off switch for landing gear, smoke or a kill switch and cannot easily be used for the second elevator servo.

Optional
7) choke
8) smoke
9) engine kill switch

And if you plan on using this radio for a warbird
10) flaps
11) landing gear
12) bomb drop
13) tail wheel steering, etc

So an aerobatic plane requires ports for the: throttle, 2 ailerons, 2 elevators and rudder. Optional are choke, smoke, and kill switch. Larger planes are actually identical if a power expander or Y-harnesses are used to split the aileron, elevator and rudder servos. Therefore a 7 channel system allows only 1 of the 3 options available. The 9303 is an excellent radio and allows all the options to be used at once. The 10X has a few more features, the touch screen being an important one.


 

 
Hitec 5830 Full Telemetry Pack Telemetric AFHSS System, ss/2, rpm/4, temp/fuel/gps

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WARNING - Gasoline and Turbine powered R/C model aircraft are not manufactured to withstand unlimited G's. Any R/C model aircraft can fail, be it a wing folding up or a fuselage breaking in half under too high of a load. Just as any full size aircraft, model R/C aircraft have a maximum G rating. Because you are not in the plane flying it and experiencing the G's and reading the G-meter, it is more difficult to judge the G's on the aircraft, and it is very easy to exceed the limits of the aircraft. Understand that if you perform a snap roll, parachute, wall, blender, knife edge loop, or pull hard on the elevator at almost any speed, you can be putting in excess of 15 G's, even in excess of 30 G's, and most aircraft can only designed to take 10-12 G's. If you perform any violent maneuver, you can break your plane. When I perform hard maneuvers, especially for the first time on an airframe, I am prepared for a failure and am prepared for it as best I can be. This mainly includes performing the maneuver far enough away from spectators that in event of a failure that I am not endangering others. In addition, be prepared for the manufacturer to not pay for a new airframe which is broken during flight. It is common practice for any manufacturer to not replace an airframe which breaks in the air or upon landing. I have only seen manufacturers replace airframes when they have received many of the same failures and the manufacturer determines that there was a design or manufacturing error. If you break an airframe, and you are the only one to do so, then it is probably not the fault of the manufacturer. Please fly safely, and avoid full throttle operation other than at low airspeeds.

R/C model jets, warbirds, aerobatic planes, DJI S1000 Octocopter, and UAV Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to name a few are not a toy! If misused, it can cause serious bodily harm and property damage. Fly only in open areas, and AMA (Academy of Model Aeronautics) approved flying sites. Follow all manufacturer instructions included with your plane, radio, servo's, batteries and engine. Aircraft manufacturers guarantees each kit to be free from defects in both material and workmanship at the date of purchase. This warranty does not cover any component assembled by the customer. All parts of high stress must be inspected and reinforced if necessary by a competent builder. Some parts should be glued again. High stress areas such as firewalls, motor boxes, wing mounts, landing gear mounts, etc., are areas of high concern. Seek help if necessary. In not case shall TBM be liable for the cost of any product it offers which is not manufactured by TBM. The liability to the manufacturer cannot exceed the original cost of the purchased item. Further, TBM reserves the right to change or modify this warranty without notice. In that TBM has no control over the final assembly or materials used for final assembly, no liability shall be assumed nor accepted for any damage resulting from the use by the user of the final user-assembled product. By the act of using the user assembled product, the user accepts all resulting liability. The kit manufacturers have provided you with a top quality, thoroughly tested kit and instructions, but ultimately the quality and fly ability of your finished model depends on how you build it; therefore, we cannot in any way guarantee the performance of your completed model, and no representations are expressed or implied as to the performance or safety of your completed model. It is the user's responsibility to inspect each component for worthiness.