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Anyone flying sailplanes using a Turnigy 9X radio?

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Ed Anderson04/03/2012 03:54:48
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247 forum posts
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Turnigy 9X - for sailplanes?

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No, I am not looking for a new radio, but this radio is so inexpensive
and has such a feature rich offering, on paper, that I was wondering if it was
good enough to recommend to new glider pilots who can not afford a
more expensive sailplane radio.

The Turnigy 9X costs costs $60 US including an 8 channel receiver. It
says it has sailplane SW, but what a manual tells me is not what a
pilot on the sticks can tell me about using it for full house
sailplanes.

The radios I most often recommend are the Futaba 8FG, JR 9503, Hitec
Aurora 9 or Artronics SD-10G. But not all new pilots can afford them.
If this 9X is reliable it might make a good alternative to a Spektrum
DX6i, which is what many start with who are on limited budgets.

Does the Turnigy 9X cut it? Is it reliable? Does it have the mixes a
sport or entry level competition pilot might want?

Please don't tell me about other radios. I am not interested in
hearing about them. I am interested in hearing about this one from an
actual owner/user who has some experience with it. The report can be
negative or positive, I don't care. I just want to know what you
think.

Thanks for any input you can provide.

Ed Anderson
Eternally in Research Mode

Edited By David Ashby on 04/03/2012 06:20:03

David Ashby - Moderator04/03/2012 06:18:33
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Can you check out the linky process please Ed, many thanks smile

Edited By David Ashby on 04/03/2012 06:19:10

Devon Flyer04/03/2012 08:11:18
622 forum posts

No doubt Steve W-O will be along shortly to give you all the info you need on this one.wink

In the meantime, there is a lot of info HERE

Seamus O'Leprosy04/03/2012 09:00:38
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842 forum posts
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I have one as a set that I can leave in the car when doing my calls and wouldn't be too upset at its loss.

Anyway it works fine no problems with it the sticks have a nice feel. The downside for me is the clunky programming and buttons. They work ok buts it's hard work setting it up for mixes, rates, expo, etc.

I haven't heard of anyone loosing a signal with one.

Paul Marsh04/03/2012 09:09:09
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Will this radio be legal in the UK? Is there a UK distributor?
Rob04/03/2012 09:15:38
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235 forum posts

Looking at the pictures it has a CE mark so does that make it legal in the UK?

EZ-Hawk04/03/2012 09:39:56
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32 forum posts

Its perfect with my Blaze mate and despite the brand snobs, its a fantastic radio! Ditched my "named" 6 channel and this is my primary radio, never lost signal to nearly out of sight!! Go for it! and yes its fully legal both here and in France Dave

Seamus O'Leprosy04/03/2012 09:42:31
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Let's not drive Ed mad here by going off topic it is LEGAL as it's on sale in the German warehouse also.

Devon Flyer04/03/2012 09:57:54
622 forum posts
Posted by Seamus O'Leprosy on 04/03/2012 09:42:31:

Let's not drive Ed mad here by going off topic it is LEGAL as it's on sale in the German warehouse also.

Not sure about that availability Seamus; I've just scrolled through the 14 pages of stuff available from the German warehouse and couldn't see it listed.question

Seamus O'Leprosy04/03/2012 10:13:14
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Posted by Devon Flyer on 04/03/2012 09:57:54:
Posted by Seamus O'Leprosy on 04/03/2012 09:42:31:

Let's not drive Ed mad here by going off topic it is LEGAL as it's on sale in the German warehouse also.

Not sure about that availability Seamus; I've just scrolled through the 14 pages of stuff available from the German warehouse and couldn't see it listed.question

Let's not drive Ed mad by going off topic

Devon Flyer04/03/2012 13:08:09
622 forum posts

wink 2

Edited By Devon Flyer on 04/03/2012 13:34:44

Ed Anderson04/03/2012 13:30:49
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247 forum posts
10 photos

David, thanks for reminding me about the link process. This is the only forum I visit that doesn't allow standard links to be posted.

EZ-Hawk, thanks for the report. What RF module are you using? How long have you had it? Have you done firmware updates? Have you added any hardware to the unit?

When it first came out there were all kinds of problems. Sounds like yours has been reliable. Before I put a $2000 glider up 1/2 mile and out 1/2 mile with something like this I am going to want to be confident it is reliable in HW, SW and RF link.

Personally I am a committed Futaba FASST pilot for my high end thermal duration gliders. I fly Spektrum or 72 MHz for my small electrics and slope gliders. So this radio is not for me ... yet.

My real goal is to see if I can recommend it as a low cost platform for new pilots.

Steve W-O04/03/2012 13:45:29
2775 forum posts
310 photos

I have been using them for more than 2 years now, without any problem.

The V2 is as good as anything else, it is CE marked, and the build quality (a let down on the earlier ones) is as good as any major brand I have opened.

I have updated my firmware, and use the ER9X firmware, it gives it more mixes and flexibility than anything else around.

I don't see any problem recommending it, after all if you believe the reports, there are other makes that seem to have a lot of problems, which I might hesitate in suggesting.

I have tested the range at well over 1/2 mile.

The only current limtation is the number of model memories.

Daithi O Buitigh04/03/2012 15:49:45
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1377 forum posts
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It was available in the German warehouse at the beginning of the year (but backorder only). I eventually got mine a week ago. It was also listed on the Hong Kong site (but isn't there either) at a lower price

The only 'problem' I can see is the battery container which, when it gets loaded up with 8 AA cells doesn't quite fit (but I have seen that in other transmitters and things). At a guess the guy designining the plastic casee was just handed an empty battery container and didn't realise that the batteries actually sit proud of the edges. You can fith a lot of fighting, get it squeezed on (but then you charge via the charging port on the side and don't need to worry about opening it again)

I've also (again on back order) the add-on programming board fot flashing the EEPROM from Smartieparts which will let you flash the ER9X firmware (and add a backlight, etc)

Steve W-O04/03/2012 16:31:48
2775 forum posts
310 photos
Posted by Daithi O Buitigh on 04/03/2012 15:49:45:

It was available in the German warehouse at the beginning of the year (but backorder only). I eventually got mine a week ago. It was also listed on the Hong Kong site (but isn't there either) at a lower price

The only 'problem' I can see is the battery container which, when it gets loaded up with 8 AA cells doesn't quite fit (but I have seen that in other transmitters and things). At a guess the guy designining the plastic casee was just handed an empty battery container and didn't realise that the batteries actually sit proud of the edges. You can fith a lot of fighting, get it squeezed on (but then you charge via the charging port on the side and don't need to worry about opening it again)

I've also (again on back order) the add-on programming board fot flashing the EEPROM from Smartieparts which will let you flash the ER9X firmware (and add a backlight, etc)

 

 

 

The Smartiparts board saves a little work, but it is very easy to do without, and a lot cheaper.

 

 

I put my programming socket behind the battery, a lot neater (can't see it) and protected from dirt and water.

 

And a lipo fits in fine, and lasts for ages.

 

HK sell very nice backlights in various colours, and inexpensive.

The blue

 

Edited By Steve W-O on 04/03/2012 16:40:09

EZ-Hawk06/03/2012 00:08:18
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32 forum posts

Hi Ed

I just use it standard! The module that came with it and bought a few extra RX's to go in my planes and VERY happy with it, had it quite a while now! No back light mods for me and I use NIMIH batts in the standard battery holder (yep it is a bit tight but you get used to it and it "gives" after a while! Loads of info available online on how to programme / mix! I have even sussed out the programming for my F16 vectored jet to do all kinds of stuff!! Good luck mate....Dave

Ed Anderson06/03/2012 03:31:48
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247 forum posts
10 photos

Thanks EZ-Hawk.

Ed Anderson26/03/2012 14:23:47
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247 forum posts
10 photos

I have continued my research on this radio system across a number of forums and have accumulated a lot of information. I have become convinced that, with the flashed SW and the FrSky module this radio is reliable enough that it can be used for full house TD sailplanes. Now let me get your opinions. Based on what I have read, I should be able to replicate the set-up that I am using on my Futaba 9C Super.

Here is my typical mix and switch set for my full house pure gliders, such as my Supra. These are all predefined mixes in my 9C Super. All servos are on their own channels using 7 channel receiver. In the Futaba 9C these mixes are predefined so I just select them and fill in the percentages. In the 9X I imagine we have to build them.

The 9C has 8 switches (2 3X) 3 dials and two sliders. In this set-up I don't use the silders or the dials.


Basic stuff = end point, sub trim, servo reverse

[B]Always on[/B]

Aileron differential of about 60%
Flap to elevator on left stick for landing control.
On some I use crow/butterfly rather than just flaps.


[B]Flight modes - The following are on switches so I can go to presets[/B].

Launch, cruise and reflex are one a single 3 way switch.

Launch - full trailing edge (flaps and ailerons) down 20%
cruise - normal flight
reflex- trailing edge up about 2 mm with elevator trim change
thermal - trailing edge down about 4mm with elevator trim change


[B]On switches so I can add or remove the mix in flight[/B]

aileron to rudder - Like to fly rudder manually in thermals.
Expo on a single switch that changes expor for ailerons, and elevator to about about 50%, when in thermals.
Aileron to flaps so flaps follow at about 50% down and 10% up - used mostly in wind
Timer so I can time my flight - beeps every minute and beeps every second from 9:50 to 10 minutes, but keeps going if I don't stop it.

For an e-glider I would put throttle on a switch, 3 way if, possible.


Would these all be possible? Or am I asking too much of this software? I think there are enough switches but I think I am short one 3 way if I want throttle on a 3 way.

Some of our club contest pilots have more advanced radios and much more complex set-ups than this, with variable expo and trim changes in each flight mode. Some have flap to elevator on the first 50% on the left stick, then crow starts to come in for remaining 50% of stick travel.

However, if the 9X can do what my 9C is doing that would be quite sufficient in my opinion. I would then move forward with a recommendation to the club that we get one and start working with it to create a lower cost sailplane radio option for our new pilots.

Daithi O Buitigh26/03/2012 17:13:40
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1377 forum posts
54 photos

Regarding the flashed (ER9x) firmware - if you download the programmer from here, it does include the manual in the 'help' segment and you can read it before deciding

Tony Smith 710/04/2012 20:07:46
812 forum posts
28 photos

I think all that's possible with the ER9X software. Did you know there's a PC emulator, so you can try the mixes and test the operation on the PC without even owning the transmitter?

Regarding throttle, I put the motor on the top 3/8 of the throttle travel, and brakes on the bottom 1/2, with a centre beep to remind me. A second 3 way switch would be very handy, and I keep meaning to fit one in place of one of the three pots which I can't imagine ever wanting to us inflight.

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