SOLVED - Newbie looking to un-brick a pair of 3DR 915MHz radios - assistance wanted

As the title suggests, I am a relative newbie looking to un-brick a pair of telemetry radios that QGroundControl broke on me by trying to do a firmware update when I didn’t ask it to. I have no experience here, and therefore am turning to you guys for help. I didn’t have access to Windows to run MissionPlanner 8 months ago when this happened, but I now have said access, and am running MissionPlanner. Any ideas on how to get my radios up and running again? I am using a BeagleBoneBlue for my Ardupilot install, so I can mess with that if necessary to flash the air radio. I also have numerous Arduinos to make software FTDIs out of.

Thanks in advance for your help! This issue has been bugging me since it happened, and I finally have the time to fix it after being ill for a while.

If the radios had V1.9 firmware and QGC updated the ground radio to V2.0 then the air radio has to be updated to V2.0. Or flash the ground radio back to V1.9

First thing I would try is to connect each radio individually to mission planner and make sure all the parameters are exactly the same. Turn off the AES security right now if it’s on. (If you need that turn it back on once you get everything running) If the radios will connect to Mission Planner then I’d use the “restore defaults” on each. Then try to connect normally, one to Mission Planner and the other to the drone.

The air one has no USB though, only a JST connector. How do I wire it up? FTDI from an arduino?

I mean, updates are good, so I’'d go to 2.x for both, but I do believe the air one is on 1.7. Is there a way to check?

They need to be on the same. For now if you think the air unit is on 1.7 then maybe move the ground unit back to 1.7 to get them connected.

Alright, I’m in on the ground unit. Where do I get the firmware package(s) to put on it? I’m just gonna walk back down the versions until I get a link.

From the wiki

  • Connect one of the radios to your computer using the micro USB cable.
  • Power the radio attached to the vehicle by plugging in the vehicle’s battery.
  • Open the Mission Planner and go to the Initial Setup | Optional Hardware | SiK Radio page.
  • Select the correct COM port and set the baud rate to 57600. Ensure the “Connect” button is in a disconnected state as shown in the image below…
  • Press the Load Settings button and both the Local and Remote areas should fill in with values including the firmware Version

I have that down, but now I need a file to upload to the ground unit. Where do I find that? Is there a GitHub to download it from?

Arduino or use this configurator. (532.5 KB)

I’ve got that tool going, but it doesn’t seem to let me pick the version either. Is there a file somewhere for the prior versions? I’m looking at and not seeing it.

All I have is V1.9 I don’t know where you find 1.7. (64.9 KB)

Why don’t you flash both radios to V2.0?

I will, but they have to talk to each other first, because there’s no USB on my air unit.

That’s what the FTDI adapter is for.

Oh. Can I also get them talking by downgrading the ground radio and then do it without FTDI? I’d have to make my own adapter from an Arduino, which will take a while.

Yes, you can do that.

You don’t need an Arduino. Connect the FTDI adapter to the PC running the 3dr configurator.

Here’s the thing: I don’t have an FTDI adapter. That’s what I’d make in software on the Arduino.

Ah, sorry I misunderstood.

No problem! I probably wasn’t clear when I said it originally. 1.9 is verifying on the ground radio now, then we’ll see if it works to talk to the air unit.

BTW-V1.7 and V1.9 are compatible. But neither with V2.0

1 Like