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Service, Parts and Discontinued Products - FAQ

I did not find the answer to my question here. How do I get further assistance?


I need to have my Futaba product serviced and I live within the U.S. or Canada. Where do I send it and what information do I need to include?

Please refer to the Futaba Service Center page for detailed information.


How do I change the frequency of my transmitter?

For a module unit: to change the frequency you simply remove the module and replace it with a module on the new channel. You can even change 'bands' (IE 72MHz to 75MHz). All radio frequency circuitry is in the module so there is no need to 'retune' after a module change. (However, the receiver cannot be similarly changed to change bands. If you go to a new band you MUST buy a new receiver on that band. Please see the note below regarding crystal changes, which is valid for ANY receiver where you are changing within one frequency band.) DO NOT attempt to change transmitter frequency by changing the crystal within the module. You must use a module which is properly tuned to the frequency desired.

For a unit with crystals: We CANNOT recommend changing crystals to a different frequency. Changing the crystal on your transmitter is illegal unless you have the proper license. The FCC has established guidelines for the modeler's safety and for the safety of spectators. For safety and FCC reasons we must request that both TX and RX be sent to the service center to ensure proper crystal change and retuning to the new frequency. Crystal based radios cannot be converted to another band without parts replacement, and may not be able to be converted at all. Certain radios can be converted, for example, from 72 to 75MHz. Please contact the service center for any other conversions.

The applicable Federal Regulation is as follows:

TITLE 47—TELECOMMUNICATION COMMISSION (CONTINUED)
PART 95—PERSONAL RADIO SERVICES

         Subpart E—Technical Regulations
Sec. 95.645  Control accessibility.
  (a) No control, switch or other type of adjustment which, when
manipulated, can result in a violation of the rules shall be accessible
from the transmitter operating panel or from exterior of the transmitter
enclosure.
(b) An R/C transmitter which incorporates plug-in frequency determining modules which are changed by the user must be certificated with the modules. Each module must contain all of the frequency determining circuitry including the oscillator. Plug-in crystals are not considered modules and must not be accessible to the user.

What does it mean to have my TX and RX 'matched'?

When you have your transmitter and receiver 'matched' both are carefully tuned to the best possible signal input and output. This helps ensure that you receive full safe transmitting range with your equipment because the RX is receiving and the TX is broadcasting the cleanest possible signal. It is a good idea to have your TX retuned occasionally. And for safety, you should always have an RX retuned after a crystal/frequency change.


My airplane is on PCM. Can I use a trainer cord with it?

Yes, for all radios EXCEPT 6X and 7U (additional info about these two systems). The master radio, the one that the instructor is using, can be either FM or PCM. The student radio, however, MUST be set to FM.


I need to replace a crystal. How can I buy one?

The easiest way to purchase replacement crystals will be to purchase a replacement crystal set from your favorite Futaba retailer. The manual for your radio will list the Futaba stock number for your crystals or you may refer to the crystal sets page. Your hobby shop or our support staff can also help you find this information.


I want to purchase parts such as servo gear sets, servo case, extensions, Y harnesses. How can I buy these?

The easiest way to purchase replacement parts which are not service parts (like gimbals, switches, etc) is to ask your favorite Futaba retailer. If they don't have them in stock, they usually can order them for you. If you need true service parts, please ask your hobby shop to contact our Futaba Service Center regarding purchasing these special order items on your behalf.


Can I have my radio worked on anywhere other than the Futaba Service Center?

Yes, but all warranty service must be done by the Futaba Service Center in Champaign IL.


I've lost my manual. How can I get a new one?

Some manuals are now available as downloads; others are available through your favorite hobby shop. Please visit our manuals page for more information.


I would like to get Futaba decals. How can I get those?

Please visit your favorite Futaba retailer or our Company Store. We are proud that you want other modelers to know you fly the very best!


Can I use 6v (5 cell) receiver packs with my Futaba receiver/servos?

All Futaba systems are designed to operate on either 4.8 volts (NiCD 4 cells) or 6 volts (Alkaline 4 cells OR NiCD 5 cells). Some manufacturer's systems are not designed for and do not operate well on 6 volt, but Futaba equipment handles the increased power input and provides increased performance, speed and torque (but decreased run time) on 5-cell NiCD packs.


Please explain your warranty coverage.

As with any company's warranty, the warranty period starts from the date of original purchase. Strictly speaking, an item sent for warranty service must include a proof of purchase date. This eliminates any questions about the warranty period and its expiration. Unfortunately, this includes items received as gifts. If an item is purchased by another individual, hopefully you will have no problems in obtaining a receipt to validate a warranty claim, or that individual can send it to us for warranty coverage. Items that are purchased used will have no warranty, neither will an unused item sold to a second owner, unless the original purchase date can be proved. A warranty is only to the original purchaser. A bill of sale between individuals is not considered a valid purchase receipt.

If you believe you have an item which warrants a warranty claim and you are in the U.S. (if you are outside the U.S. please contact the international contact in your region), please refer to our Service Center page for the shipping address and instructions.

If you have any questions regarding warranty coverage, please do not hesitate to contact our warranty center.


I emailed a question to your product support address. How soon will I get an answer?

If you emailed our support teams, you should receive an automated response immediately or nearly immediately. (This automated response will inform you our normal response time is by the end of the next business day and provide you other important details to assist you.) If you did not receive a computer generated response within 24 hours, then something was wrong and your email was not received properly or there is something wrong with your reply to address set up in your email account. Please resend the email to us with a note that this is a second copy and please be SURE to provide us your full email address as well as at least one other means of daytime contact (phone, message #, fax, alternate email address).


I am looking for further information on a discontinued product, but I couldn't find anything on your web site. Where can I find the information I need?

We will be happy to assist you. Please be advised, however, that depending upon how old your discontinued item is, we may only have limited information available to provide you. Please contact product support, being sure to provide full detailed information on your model, your full email address and at least 1 other means of daytime contact in your email.


I have a question (or comment) about my YS engine. Who do I contact?

Please direct all questions and comments about YS Engines to:

Performance Specialties
1851 Pinto Circle
Gardnerville, Nevada 89410
Tel: 775-265-7523
Fax: 775-265-7522


I need to have my Futaba product serviced and I live OUTSIDE U.S. and Canada. Where do I send it and what information do I need to include?

For assistance outside of the U.S. and Canada, please contact the international distributor in your area.


Please explain narrow band to me. How do I know if my transmitter is legal to use? Can I get it upgraded if it is not? Is my receiver safe to use?

Note: The information below applies to Futaba transmitters only.

The FCC requirements for the width of the signal output by RC radio equipment on 72 and 75 MHz was narrowed effective 3/1/91. MOST radios made before 1991 did not meet these new standards. MOST radios that did not meet the new standards could be 'narrowed' by authorized service centers from 3/1/91 to 3/1/98, thus making them legal to use. Canadian standards were changed effective 6/1/02 to comply with the same narrowband standards as the US.

How do I know if my transmitter is legal?

The easiest way to answer this is through a series of questions. If you answer YES to any of questions 1 through 6, you do not need to continue. Your radio is legal to use in the U.S. You may use a printout of this FAQ to show your club officials to avoid any confusion or concerns.

  1. Is your TX on 27MHz? If so, it is legal, no matter what model or brand. ALL TXs on 27MHz are exempt from this rule. Note: Please check the actual frequency on YOUR transmitter. (For example: 72.590 is on the 72MHz band.) Many models of transmitter are produced on multiple bands, so just looking in your instructions to see what band it was produced on will probably not answer this question.

  2. Is your TX either FM (PPM) or PCM or both? If so, it is legal, no matter what Futaba model it is. ALL Futaba FM and PCM transmitters met the standard.

  3. If your TX is AM, does it have a label listing it as "Narrow Band", "1991" or similar? If so, it is legal because it either was legal at time of production or was upgraded to make it legal.

  4. If your TX is AM, and it was manufactured on an odd numbered channel? Then it is definitely narrow band and legal. (Simply changing a crystal does not make the radio safe, narrow band, or legal.)

  5. If your TX is AM, and it was manufactured on a channel below 38? Then it is definitely narrow band and legal.

  6. If your radio is AM and is in the list below, it was narrow band and legal at time of production and is legal to use:
    • 2NBL
    • 2NCS
    • 2NBR
    • 2V
    • 2VR
    • 2CR
    • 2DR
    • 2PB
    • 2PBKA
    • 2PC
    • 2PCKA
    • 2PD-AM
    • 4NBL


  7. Is your TX on any of these frequencies: 72.080, 72.160, 72.320, 72.400, 72.960 or 75.640? If so, it is a very old 80 kHz unit and is not legal and cannot be made legal.

  8. Gold stickerIf your radio is AM and is not on the list in step 4 AND does not already have a gold sticker on it (see photo), we cannot narrow band it for you. Unfortunately, under FCC regulation, we are no longer able to narrow band these old transmitters or otherwise provide any parts, information or service for these radios as of 3/1/98.

    For example, is your radio a 4NL, 6FN, 4L, 6FN, FG series AM, 2PKA, or a 5LK? These radios are not legal for use in the U.S. at this time and CANNOT be made narrow band.

Is my receiver safe to use?
You might assume that if your transmitter was narrow band at time of production, so is your receiver. This assumption seems logical, but is incorrect—all FM transmitters were built to narrow band standards from the beginning of Futaba FM transmitter generation; however, at that time there was no need or standard to narrow band the receivers, so many receivers were NOT narrow band. Wide band receivers are not illegal, but are potentially dangerous as they may pick up adjacent signals from pagers, cell phones, other channel transmitters, etc. Below is a list of narrow band receivers produced by Futaba up to 1/1/00. Any new receivers introduced in 1991 or later were all narrow band, so any new receiver not yet listed here is still legal for use:

Futaba Narrow Band Receivers
AMFMPCM1024PCM512
R102JER103FR1131PR128DP
R112JER113FR1131PWR1051P*
R122JER123FR127DP 
R114HR127DFR148DP 
MCR4AR128DFR129DP 
R117HR148DFR149DP 
  R309DPS 
  R124DPR124DP
  R127DPR127DP
  R138DP 
*(This RX worked only with the 5NLP TX.)
(R124DP & R127DP were switchable between 512 and 1024)

My receiver is not listed. Does that mean it is wide band? Is it legal to use? Is it bad to use?
If your Futaba receiver is not listed and is not made after 1991, then it is not narrow band. Because it is wide band, while it is legal, it is far more likely to receive interference and so it is definitely preferable to replace it.


I would like to get a schematic of my Futaba product. Can you please email that to me?

Unfortunately, schematics are not available. If your item requires service, please send it to the service center. If you are wishing to use the item in an industrial application, please use our Industrial Information form.


How do I change the frequency on my receiver?

Futaba 72MHz receivers are all center tuned within 1/2 or the other 1/2 of the frequency band. So, if you have a receiver on any channel within 11-35 (72.010 through 72.490), you can purchase a receiver crystal and change it to any other channel within 11-35. If you have a receiver on any channel within 36-60 (72.510 through 72.990), you can change the crystal and use it on any other channel within 38-60. However, ALWAYS perform a full range check prior to utilizing the equipment. If you have any doubts about its performance, it is always best to send it for service and let us match your transmitter (if your Tx has a module, only that needs to be sent) and receiver for maximum performance

Futaba 27MHz, 50MHz, and 75MHz are all center tuned to that particular band. Therefore, any 27MHz receiver on any channel can be changed to any other channel WITHIN THE 27MHz band, and same is true of 50 and 75 MHz bands.

For info on changing to another FREQUENCY BAND (ie. changing a 72MHz receiver to 75MHz), please click here.


My CAMPac seems to be behaving strangely. I can copy models within my transmitter's regular memory fine, but if I try to copy to the CAMPac, the model name carries over but some other functions do not. What's wrong?

There are two possible causes. First, the CAMPac itself may be bad. If you have access to another 8U or 9Z, please try using the CAMPac in that radio. If the behavior recurs in both radios, the CAMPac is likely the problem.

Second, if you know the CAMPac is good, then there may be a board problem in your transmitter itself which is causing problems reading the data down from the CAMPac. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO FLY off the CAMPac, even if a model seems to be operating properly but others are not. Please send the transmitter and CAMPac for service immediately.


Do Futaba batteries come charged or discharged?

All batteries are shipped discharged for safety reasons.


Part of my FM receiver antenna ripped off. Can I solder a new piece onto it?

While we can not recommend that anyone change their receiver wire, as this can cause serious problems such as loss of reception and major interference issues, and also void any warranty that you may have on your radio system.

If you are very good with a soldering iron, and safety consideration (do a COMPLETE and thorough ground check, after for safety purposes) and the warranty are not a issue, you would want to look for 22 gauge wire, and the length will be:

approximately 19 1/2" for surface
approximately 39 1/2" for Air

BUT, our recommendation is to send the receiver into our Service Center to be repaired.


Can you convert my AM receiver to FM?

No. An AM receiver cannot be converted to FM or vice-versa. You will need to purchase an FM receiver for FM operation.


How can I clean/lubricate my antenna?

Clean your antenna only with isopropyl alcohol. Never use any petroleum based products, especially lubricants, as these will cause poor connection from the antenna contacts to the antenna itself.


I have an R129DP receiver. I understand there is an upgrade that can be made to these. What is it and how do I know if mine needs it?

The original R129DP receivers have difficulty talking to some 9-channel transmitters. They would not respond at all to certain types of transmitters used. This was corrected around 1999. If you are unsure if your receiver is updated, you can simply send it to us and we will check it. If you are comfortable doing so, you can take the receiver out of the case and check the letters on the large decoder I.C. On the updated receivers the I.C. letters will read FP6302B. On receivers that are not updated the letters are FP6302 no B designation. (Note that we cannot be responsible for the workmanship of the user. If you are unsure how to open your case and check, please send the receiver for service.)


I am looking for an item from this manufacturer. The hobby shop says you do not have stock of it here in the U.S. How can I get one?

Thank you for the interest in our product. Please contact your local dealer and provide them with the manufacturer number (or detailed description) of the item you desire. The dealer will contact Great Planes to find out the status of the item. If the item is no longer available from the manufacturer your dealer will inform you, otherwise he should be able to special order it for you. Ask the dealer to get a quote on the cost of the special order and you can decide at that time whether or not you want to order it.


I am a HAM operator. I want to check my FM transmitter/module to ensure it is transmitting properly. What do I need to look for?

When the frequency is greater than 1.5 kHz off center, it needs to be properly calibrated. If you wish for us to do it for you, just can send in just the module (if modular, or whole transmitter if not) and receiver (if you would like it checked as well). Assuming no other problems, check up and the retune cost should be about $15 plus shipping.


What is the maximum output of Futaba aircraft radios? Can I make it higher?

All R/C radios in the U.S. must not exceed .75 watts output power. Licensed HAM operators may utilize equipment up to 1 watt. Otherwise, it is against FCC regulation to increase the output beyond .75 watts.

Note that most systems have noticeably less than .75 watt and still offer range far beyond the range in which a person can see his/her model aircraft.


Can my older Futaba system be serviced?

If your Futaba transmitter, receiver, or servos have been out of production for more than five years, repair service may be difficult. The Futaba factory ceases support eight years after production of the item has ceased. All parts, whether electronic, mechanical, or hardware will be in very short supply, if at all.

Transmitters include all non-narrow-band units; all PCM 512 transmitters (5NLP, 8SS, 8SG); all AM Conquest units; FG/K series transmitters (all versions of the "gold" box); 9VAP/VHP, 7UA/UH, and others not listed.

Servos and receivers can be worse than transmitters because they have a much shorter service life.

If you have an older transmitter, please check our list of non-serviceable items to see if we are able to provide repair services for your equipment.


I sent my radio in for repair, and it needed a new battery. I got the new battery, but they didn't send my old one back to me, why?

We are required to recycle or dispose of all NiCd and NiMH batteries properly. When we replace or exchange your battery for you, as you received a new one, we sent the old batteries on to a recycling center. If you would like for us to return the old batteries to you, you would need to indicate this on your Service Request Form.


If I remove my transmitter battery will I lose all my data? Does my radio have a lithium battery to store all my programming, or how is this data stored? Do I need to service this memory in any way?

For memory storage your radio uses permanent EEPROM memory and does not have a lithium battery. Only the 9Z and 14MZ series radios have Lithium back up batteries. Your transmitter battery may be removed safely for storage, cycling, or other reasons without loss of data.


I did not find the answer to my question here. How do I get further assistance?

Back to main FAQ/Contact Info page


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