Hi. My name is David Theunissen. I make miniature 2.4GHz receivers. Dan has drawn your attention to them and I thought I should introduce myself.
I live in the UK. I have worked in IT and my main hobby has been RC planes. I converted from internal combustion to electric powered models many years ago and have made many of my own brushless motors. I used nicads and lithium cells from laptops before lipos become common for hobby use.
When 2.4GHz hobby radios first appeared I was a fairly early adopter and found them so much nicer than the FM systems we were using. One thing led to another and I made a couple of miniature 2.4GHz receivers for my own use.
Surface vehicles and trains in particular are new for me. So I will be happy to explain how I approach radio control if anyone wants to know. I also welcome inquiries and suggestions.
Last edited on Mon Oct 1st, 2012 05:22 pm by DavidT
'Rx41d-v5' has an on-board forward/reverse brushed ESC suitable for most trains. The standard configuration is to use 'full stick' travel for motor control. The motor is off when the Tx stick is pulled fully back. Mid-stick is half throttle and you get full speed with the stick fully forward. The stick with a ratchet is normally used (Ch1) so the throttle stays where you leave it. A separate channel on the Tx is used to toggle direction (forward/reverse).
'Rx43d-1-v5' and 'Rx43d-2-v5' also have on-board forward/reverse brushed ESCs. Their default setup uses one stick for forward and reverse. The throttle is off at mid-stick. It is usually used with a spring-loaded stick (Ch2).
The ESCs on my 'servo' receivers are 1-way. You would need an external ESC for 2-way control.
For trains the most obvious constraint is that my integrated 2-way ESCs can only be used with 3-6v. So 1S lipo and 4 Nicads/NiMHs are the most obvious power sources. An external ESC can be used with a higher voltage rating.
Those look great for smaller trains, David. Any plans to make some that are more suitable for larger trains? I think 2 cell lipo power seems to be good for up to O scale and I think the G scalers would like to run 3 cell.
I would like to cater for higher voltages such as you mention but I need more feedback from folk. I think DCC has taken trains down an integrated ESC route. This makes them easier to install but may take up more space and probaby limits choice.
I think 'traditional RC' (planes, cars, boats) will take people down the path of separate ESCs and Rx's. I expect this to be true especially in the larger scales. This is because an 'Orange 6ch' type receiver is the cheapest on the planet and having a separate ESC allows people to chose whatever voltage/current/efficiency/PWM/BEMF etc stuff they want.
I have loads of small receivers, China has loads of cheap ones and Spektrum/Futaba/Hitec etc have loads of high quality gear. I think brushed ESCs have become quite rare. So is that the gap to fill or does it have to be receivers with integrated ESCs?
Most 2.4 receivers will only work with one brand. Only a few manufacturers make receivers that are compatible with other brands. This will normally be made obvious. If they do not claim compatibility it is not.
It's probably worth mentioning 'binding'. Receivers will only work with one brand of transmitter and they will only work with the one to which they are bound. This is very different from FM and AM receivers which will try to obey anything they pick up on their frequency. 2.4 systems normally have strong validation which gives them their strong locked on feel.
I think if you offered an ESC that was compatible with your gear in three favors, micro (1s), mid (2s) and large (3s) you'd have it covered pretty well.
Of course, these would need to be for brushed motors and have a reverse to be useful for train guys. The tiny RX that you offer are great. The little TX you were using was cool too. If people want more elaborate stuff that controls DCC sound or cabs that can control more than one engine, those systems are available but what you are doing is excellent for a small and simple option that seems to have been overlooked by most of the bigger outfits.
Last edited on Mon Oct 1st, 2012 07:04 pm by mwiz64
Thanks. I also wondered if people might want track power. I suspect that gets trickier due to poor pickup. Also, the cheap system I have has gives off much higher voltages than its nominal 12v (more like 20v when not under load).