My radio mods / Programming tips and ideas.

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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:17 pm

Hi. Quite often I talk about my wonderfull radio, how proud I am of it and how usefull is for our hobby, but now I wanted to begin to show you what is it all about, and also to answer the possible questions Mr wibblywobbly and others may have.

First of all, I bought this radio:
https://www.banggood.com/es/Wholesale-F ... rehouse=CN Which is the original version of the turnigy 9x that can be found at hobbyking: https://hobbyking.com/es_es/turnigy-9x- ... tore=es_es
EDIT 3: Now hobbyking is producing this radio with a newer module, it can only bind to one receiver at a time, and also comes with a weaker processor. I dont recommend it!


The differences among them, is the Flysky looks cooler (I preffer the black over the grey) and the module at the back is removable, which is very important.

Both radios as stock, have a very primitive and almost unusable software, and a screen where you can not see anything with or without light, lol. But for about 3 euros you can install a backlight inside.

In my radio I installed a 9xtreme board, which I am afraid is no longer produced http://smartieparts.com/shop/index.php? ... cts_id=378 it lets me modify the radio to a extreme you cant imagine, being the most important flashing new software. Nowadays, you can buy this small board instead http://smartieparts.com/shop/index.php? ... cts_id=383, which will let you change the sofware (which in my opinion is still a must)

So, what else did I do in my radio?
The most important, I flashed the er9xsky software.
I installed that 9xtreme board.
I plugged a SD card and a small battery for the internal clock.
A speaker (so the radio plays music, play voices and all kind of custom sounds)
I am using a 3S lipo battery https://hobbyking.com/es_es/turnigy-265 ... ba-jr.html that lets me drive my tanks for I think something about 30 hours or so.
I installed a reverse polarity diode. In case I plug a battery the wrong way, the radio wont suffer.
I installed an USB port for connecting it to the computer for updating firmware (that updates every 3-4 days or to play with simulators on the computer)
I installed a PPM resistor, that protects the radio and the 9xtreme board in case the module is unplugged when the radio is on.
My backlight is RGB, which means that I can change the color of the screen with the software... Red, blue, pink... Whatever me or my children want.

And the coolest part, I replaced four 2-position switches with 3 position ones.
I replaced one potentiometer with a 6 position switch.
I installed 4 buttons (momentary switches) at the back of the radio.
So it lets me trigger not less than 41 positions in my switches... And those let me trigger any function I want in my tank. Even when it sounds an overkill, sometimes I even need more, no kidding.
And lastly I installed an internal multiprotocol module with telemetry inside the tank. This module makes my radio compatible with all the brands... Spektrum, frsky, turnigy, flysky, futaba and about 150 more, with telemetry capability (So I see how much battery is left in the tank, the speed, the temperature, or even the GPS coordinates) So my radio has two modules at the same time, the internal and the external, giving me 24 channels, and I could upgrade to 32 if needed. Also it lets me drive two tanks at the same time.
I replaced the gimbals with the taranis ones. (Just because I wanted to experiment something new) and the sticks with something more comfortable for me. I am a thumber, not a pitcher, so I needed another kind of sticks.
Bluetooth connection, so I can connect the radio to my computer, mobile phone or other radio.
Haptic. My radio vibrates when shooting the cannon, machine gun, starting the motors, running out of battery....


Some people will say "Yeah, you are talking about something we cannot buy (9xtreme), like you do with your damn ASP 2" well, there are more options like the AR9x board (I have not tested it) or you have the posibility of taking the easy and cheap route... BUY A TURNIGY 9XR PRO wich already comes with sounds, speaker, sd card, USB port, already flashed with ersky 9x and some more functions.
EDIT: The 9XR Pro has been discontinnued. Grab one ASAP if you can!
It comes basically most of the mods you want to install, unless you are a very advanced user. And also lets you, at least, install 4 position switches and the 6 position switch too. (Already done by me, so I tan testify it works) But I think I can install many things more.

EDIT 2: Now the 9XR PRO is discontinnued, I recommend you getting a Taranis 9XD


So, here the photos begin:
Four momentary switches:
1.jpg


The switches from inside. Also the blob of hot glue in the PCB is securing the PPM resistor I installed
2.jpg


Reverse polarity protection diode, with more hot glue.
3.jpg


Multiprotocol internal module. The speaker is behind the sponge, and also that potentiometer is the 6 position switch.
4.jpg


Radio overview showing the 9xtreme, the taranis gimballs and so on.
5.jpg



But most important than all of this: I learnt everything from Charly, from lacadenaherrumbrosa, Kevin, from rc tanks Australia, and all the crazy guys at openrcforums. I cant thank you enough.
Last edited by Rad_Schuhart on Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:21 am, edited 6 times in total.
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Postby mcovalsk » Sat Dec 08, 2018 1:43 am

Hi Rad it's me Mario
Fantastic what you did with the radio, I will take some ideas like the several point switch replacing some pot.
All the best!

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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Sat Feb 16, 2019 4:04 pm

Today I added something else to my radio!

First of all, metal standoffs, so I can open and close the radio infinite times without any damage. I installed 6,
52071521_328195974467747_6455366821192138752_n.jpg


Second a bluetooth module:
I can connect the radio to the computer with it, so I can programm the radio from the computer without wires, or to connect to other radios. It is very usefull.
52097255_260731741489940_4364137185956331520_n.jpg


And lastly, another multiprotocol module, so now I have 32channels, with SBUS and telemetry. Now I can control all the things I need.
https://www.banggood.com/IRangeX-IRX4-2 ... mds=search

I LOVE my radio, guys.

I am very close to install all the possible mods, the next will be a FPV mount, and haptic (vibration) so for example, when I shoot the cannon or machine gun, the radio vibrates in my hands. Cool, isnt it?

The last mod will be to install a 7 position encoder where the front buttons are, but that will be more in the future... The part needed seems to be impossible to find in Europe.
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Wed Feb 20, 2019 6:34 pm

Well, meanwhile all the parts needed for installing double Haptic (Vibration, one motor on each side of the radio, interrally) arrive from china, I realized my Turnigy 9xr Pro has already it! And due to my beloved radio and the 9XR Pro share the same software, I started to thinker about it. One quick question to our friends in the open rc forum, and voilá!

Now as you will see in the forum, when I press the trigger that shoots the main cannon, the radio vibrates for a second. I think this is something pretty cool, makes tanking more inmersive.
For those who IR battle, you can put a timer so the radio will tell you when your cannon has been reloaded after shooting.

Also due to the radios have a speaker, I thought I could tie some sounds with the tank functions, so I did it too, also showed in the video.

Of course I can change the sounds to whatever I want, is just a matter of conecting the radio to the computer and to swap the sounds with my own voice or so. Limit is your imagination.

I hope somebody will find it interesting.

phpBB [video]


Hopefully you can heard the vibration sound (similar to a mobile phone) when I press the trigger.
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Feb 21, 2019 9:41 am

I will continue my monologue here, lol.

Meanwhile I receive the parts I am waiting for, I thought this video tutorial from Kevin, the Rc tanks Australia guy, might be interesting for some of you.

It explains how to set up a realistic recoil just with your radio. I think it is very interesting:

phpBB [video]


You can do it with any 9x radio with er9x software.
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Postby jimbo_wa » Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:15 am

Great idea on the Tx setup, there’s always more than one way to skin a cat!

I’m using a FrSky X-Lite, so am slightly limited on the switches compared to yours - need to look out the specs as I cannot recall it having haptic feedback...


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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:23 am

jimbo_wa wrote:Great idea on the Tx setup, there’s always more than one way to skin a cat!

I’m using a FrSky X-Lite, so am slightly limited on the switches compared to yours - need to look out the specs as I cannot recall it having haptic feedback...


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


Hi, the X-Lite is indeed more limited by the lack of switches and the mods that can be done, but it does have Haptic.
Also uses OpenTX software, which is a very good software too, so you will be able to have tons of programming capabilities.
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Postby 43rdRecceReg » Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:30 am

Do continue, Rad! :thumbup: Your stream-of-consciousness threads, always produce stuff worth knowing :thumbup: :clap:
But, if you keep adding buttons and gizmos to your beloved TX, won't you need to grow an extra pair of arms? :D
Roy.
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:38 am

43rdRecceReg wrote:Do continue, Rad! :thumbup: Your stream-of-consciousness threads, always produce stuff worth knowing :thumbup: :clap:
But, if you keep adding buttons and gizmos to your beloved TX, won't you need to grow an extra pair of arms? :D
Roy.


Lol, thanks. One of the best things of the 9x transmitters, is that are very ergonomic, so all the switches and triggers are in a very logical and reachable position. I really love the extra push buttons added in the back of the radio, and they are very practical too. (I use them for changing the gears/speeds of the tank) Anyway I think I have reached the point that no more switches/pots are phisically possible to add (except the control encoder that will be added later on) But after about 42 positions in the switches I am sure I dont need to add anything else.

But yeah, I will keep updating the thread with more gadjets and programming ideas to make the tank feel like a tank.
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Postby 43rdRecceReg » Thu Feb 21, 2019 12:38 pm

Rad_Schuhart wrote:
43rdRecceReg wrote:Do continue, Rad! :thumbup: Your stream-of-consciousness threads, always produce stuff worth knowing :thumbup: :clap:
But, if you keep adding buttons and gizmos to your beloved TX, won't you need to grow an extra pair of arms? :D
Roy.


Lol, thanks. One of the best things of the 9x transmitters, is that are very ergonomic, so all the switches and triggers are in a very logical and reachable position. I really love the extra push buttons added in the back of the radio, and they are very practical too. (I use them for changing the gears/speeds of the tank) Anyway I think I have reached the point that no more switches/pots are phisically possible to add (except the control encoder that will be added later on) But after about 42 positions in the switches I am sure I dont need to add anything else.

But yeah, I will keep updating the thread with more gadjets and programming ideas to make the tank feel like a tank.


You are very welcome, Rad. I always appreciate your input and drive. :thumbup:
It just occurred to me that with buttons on the back and front, along with toggles, an experienced squeezebox player, or pianist would have an advantage in terms of co-ordination. :D :think:
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:18 pm

Small update... Still waiting for the parts to install the vibration in my radio, but while messing with it, I discovered while I could make it work with the cannon (momentary switch, press once and the radio vibrates) I could not make it work with the machine gun (on-off switch, the radio keeps vibrating non stop until you flick the switch off) So I asked the open rc guys if I was missing something, and they answered me that option was not implemented in the software... Yet. But big thanks to Mike B, he was kind enough to make a new revision of the software that included that new feature. This guy is able to make all our dreams come true.

For those who have interest, the file can be downloaded here.
https://openrcforums.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4676 it is the ersky9xProvR222d4 inside the zip choose the file that suits your radio.

If you want that feature or not, it might be well worth to update your radio firmware. The firmware updates Id say about 6 times a month, so maybe there are a lot of new features you are missing.
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:26 am

Mini update.
Not my cleanest job, not my best photos, but the driver board is ready.

70174b16-fe59-4a3c-a649-82bf82ec4db9.jpg
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This little board I made will connect to the radio internals, and from it, it will split in two small boards that will control the two vibration motors.

I only need the rest of the parts to arrive from china..
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:51 am

There are very few things left for considering my radio definitive and complete... One is the FPV-Mobile phone mount, that I already have and I will show you soon, and another is a 7 Position encoder for replacing the front buttons, making the programming much faster and nicer.

The encoder needed is a discontinnued piece, so if somebody has interest on it, better to grab one before they run out. Two months ago there were about 800, now 98. A friend of mine from the US grabbed a couple for me, but it will take long time until he sends them to me.
https://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/CK ... JoVWOZow==
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Postby 43rdRecceReg » Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:45 pm

Hi Rad,
Here's an informative piece on TX/RX protocols, that could be of interest to you. It helps unpack some of the terminology used to describe Radio communication formats (SBUS/IBUS/; PWM; PPM and so on :thumbup:
For someone as much in love with his radio, and radio tech potential, as you are, this could be of real interest. :D What surprised me, is that there's no one overall standard shared by RX makers for serial protocols.
(SBUS/IBUS etc..) :think:
https://oscarliang.com/pwm-ppm-sbus-dsm ... ifference/
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:57 pm

43rdRecceReg wrote:Hi Rad,
Here's an informative piece on TX/RX protocols, that could be of interest to you. It helps unpack some of the terminology used to describe Radio communication formats (SBUS/IBUS/; PWM; PPM and so on :thumbup:
For someone as much in love with his radio, and radio tech potential, as you are, this could be of real interest. :D What surprised me, is that there's no one overall standard shared by RX makers for serial protocols.
(SBUS/IBUS etc..) :think:
https://oscarliang.com/pwm-ppm-sbus-dsm ... ifference/


Hi, thanks for the link, it is indeed interesting. That might help you to understand a bit better my radio and the modules I am using.
I have two multiprotocol modules, (one internal and one external, but just one is more than enough for most of the people) that brings 32 channels to my radio, and also makes it compatible with about 200 brands out there.

Flysky, Frsky, Spectum, Futaba, SBUS, IBUS and many more receiver brands and protocols are compatible with my radio, so that means I can use almost everything in the market with just one single radio.

It comes in handy because I can use very cheap receivers (You all know I am an extreme cheapskate) or ultra small (nail size) ones for tiny buildings, cars... (I could even fit a 16 channel receiver inside a 1/18 soldier!!!). It is one of the best upgrades in my radio, and it can be done in a some other brands out there.
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Mar 28, 2019 10:09 pm

Hi guys, today I managed to install the vibration motors and my own PCB in my radio. I installed two, one on each side. Now my radio vibrates in a determinated way to tell me that my tank or radio are running out of batteries... Also it vibrates when I shoot the main cannon, the machine gun, and when I start the motor on, giving a nice effect of "feeling" the tank.

I cant be happier...

photo_2019-03-28_21-59-28.jpg


photo_2019-03-28_22-00-48.jpg


The FPV mount is installed too, I just have to take some photos, and then, the last piece, the holy grial, the Encoder has to be installed, but it will take me some months...

Again, without the help of the Openrcguys, this would have not been possible. Cant thank them enough.
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:01 am

I almost forgot to show you another easy mod. It is one of those things you dont need, until you need it.

If you are like me, that have only a couple of good radios and a lot of receivers, from time to time you may have the need of binding them with one or the other radio. Also if you go to a tank meeting, you might need to bind some other`s guy tank with your own radio. And if you are not using modern receivers, you need a bind plug... That of course you left kilometers away at home.

This wont be a problem anymore! Now I have a bind plug hidden in an unused part in my radio, so I always carry it with me.

daec7d26-16ea-47f9-9030-2fd2bcf045fe.jpg
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04e6ede6-212a-414f-987a-62c329bba768.jpg
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It sounds like a stupid mod, but it saved me a couple of times. :D
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Postby lady.tigger » Thu Apr 04, 2019 9:33 am

This is mind bending stuff, fantastic I just wish I had that kind of knowledge, well done, loved reading this. :O :clap: :thumbup:

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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Apr 04, 2019 9:43 am

lady.tigger wrote:This is mind bending stuff, fantastic I just wish I had that kind of knowledge, well done, loved reading this. :O :clap: :thumbup:


Thanks! But id I did it, you can do it too!

I did not reinvent the wheel, most part of what I did here, has been done (and thanks to God reported) before. So I just kept compiling tons of info here and there, put something of my own style, added some of my own ideas too, and done :)
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Wed Apr 10, 2019 8:23 am

Hi guys, I did a couple of videos that some of you might find interesting.

With Tamiya and most of the aftermarket boards you have to use sticks and trims for triggering the extra functions. I find it extremely annoying, and also is like going to a friend's barbecue and asking for a salad, so I did a couple of small videos of how to short it out.

In the video I am using an Elmod fusion pro. For triggering the extra sounds, the manual expect you to flick one switch in one position, and then to move the turret stick to some other positions... IMHO this is plain stupid, so I programmed the radio for triggering all the functions with just push buttons or switches.

You can asign ANY switch of your radio to ANY fuction. And also this will work with any board. Now my stick is free, and it will be only used for moving the turret and elevating the cannon. No more unwanted shoots or silly ninja combinations.

phpBB [video]


phpBB [video]
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