MAVLink data displayed on OpenTX (9X/9XR/etc) radio screen via OpenLRS, plus telemetry pass-thru to PC

FYI, it is very easy to display convenient live MAVLink data on your (9X/9XR/etc) radio screen using OpenTx and OpenLRSng. You can also simultaneously pass the data to Mission Planner running on your PC via a USB FTDI cable (3v3).

I use a 9XR radio running OpenTX compiled with EXT=MAVLINK (or installed automatically using the Companion9X app by ticking MAVLINK extension), and the latest version of OpenLRSng (Gitsly branch). I use a cheap OrangeRX Tx module ($29) in the 9XR, and OrangeRx Rx module ($19) in the plane. This gives me 433MHz RC control over the plane, as well as a MAVLink-compatible serial link (57600 baud, 19200 datarate). No need for extra XBee/3DR/RFD radios.

With this cost-saving combination, I get MAVLink data displayed on my 9XR screen (mode, nav, link, batt, GPS, etc), and by plugging a FTDI cable between my Tx module and laptop, Mission Planner also gets live flight data - normal display of flight data, maps, etc.

The upside is low cost and only the 433MHz RF channel used (no extra modem transmitting other frequencies), which also gives power consumption, weight reduction, and possible range benefits (less RF near antennas as opposed to using a separate telemetry radio).

I just thought it was a setup worth mentioning for new and budget conscious DIY-ers, or those wanting a second, less hard-core setup, such as on a slope soarer.

The original setup discussions (parts out of date now) and procedure summary is here: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1913501

Devices are here:
- OrangeRX LRS UHF Tx module 100mW (~$15): http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...095&aff=913237

- OrangeRX LRS UHF Tx module 1W (~$30): http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewitem.asp?idproduct=...

- OrangeRX LRS UHF Rx (~$15): http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...096&aff=913237
- Turnigy 9XR radio (~$50): http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...544&aff=913237

NOTE: for 9X/9XR you will need to make a few small mods to the module connector pins on the 9XR/Tx to enable bi-directional serial I/O.

Special thanks to Kha (OpenLRSng), Martin (Gitsly/OpenLRSng) and Rienk (OpenTX/MAVLink) to get this operational.

Rienk's dev thread: http://diydrones.com/forum/topics/mavlink-ardupilot-opentx-extension

Companion9X for radio firmware: http://www.open-tx.org/downloads.html

Martin's Gitsly/OpenLRSng firmware for Rx/Tx modules: https://github.com/gitsly/openLRSng

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Glad you found free hosting. For the next time, this is something you can host for free on Google Plus, or Blogger, or I've even seen some people use a Google Doc (WYSIWYG, no html and syncing required), and post the link to the doc. Either of them will be free forever from a provider that won't disappear tomorrow :)

I did that once, see the Google Doc here: http://marc.merlins.org/perso/rc/2015-05.html#Cularis-7-Channel-Gli...

and yes, I write such docs myself too, I know how long they take, so thanks again :)

Does anyone have this working with a 9x radio... 

Hi All,

I am a first timer in UHF and Open LRS. My hardware is Taranis+, Pixhawk (APM copter 3.3.3 Y6), Deluxe JR HawkEye TX and HawkEye 1W RX following these instructions I successfully achieved:

  • Flashed both TX and RX with Gitsly code
  • TX and RX are bind and fail-safe is working
    (even at this point I consider this a big success so thank you everyone)
  • Serial Protocol in APM is set to Mavlink
  • Serial Baud in APM is set to 19200
  • Using FTDI cable connected directly to flight controller I can connect to Mission Planner (to test Serial settings)

Here is where I would appreciate any help:

  • Connected flight controller Serial pins to 1W Receiver TX, RX and GND pins
  • Connected FTDI cable to Transmitter RX, TX and GND pins
  • Mission Planner can't pass "Getting parameters" dialogue

Looks like Mavlink data is not passed through or most likely I screwed up somewhere.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Hi LTMNO,

I am not at the point where I am ready to display Mavlink on the radio but was reading this thread and it seems to work for somebody else.

Hope this helps you too.

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