Newb question-How to build a simple remote control for basic ESC

Hello, Very new to this (and not really familiar with Arduino / coding), trying to make a simple remote control that just sends signals (initialize and fwd/rev) to the basic ESC so that we can test thrust / performance with a concept surface vehicle. Is there a simple “off the shelf” solution?

Tried a simple RF receiver key fob from Adafruit: Simple RF M4 Receiver - 315MHz Momentary Type : ID 1096 : $4.95 : Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics and kits

…But then realized I need to send specific signals to the ESC.

I’m sure this is very basic stuff! Any help would be appreciated-and willing to pay someone with the technical expertise to develop for us! If we find thrust is sufficient we want to develop a more sophisticated control possibly with dual thrusters- this is for a surface vehicle.



Here is how I would do it:

Connect a R/C receiver to an Arduino Uno and have it read the R/C receiver PWM output and convert to a Servo output value.

Attach the Thruster ESC input to an Uno output and send the Servo output PWM signal to the ESC.

At startup have the Uno send a PWM value of 1500 us (neutral) to the ESC to initialize it.

Then have the Uno read the R/C receiver PWM output, do the necessary conversion, then send the Servo PWM value out to the Thruster ESC. I believe that the Arduino code converts the range of 1000 us - 2000 us to 0 to 180 and then back again to a PWM value for the Servo output.

I would use the R/C transmitter Pitch Joystick for forward/reverse with stop (neutral) at the joystick center.



You can simply plug the ESC into an rc receiver. No microcontroller acting as a middleman is necessary. The easiest, simplest way to control the ESC (not remotely) would be a ‘servo tester,’ which can be found for a few dollars. This may be adequate to determine adequate thrust with a bench setup and a test tank.

For cheap rc/receiver combination look at hobby King hkt6a and hobby King receivers those will do the job.

Thanks! What about initialization for the ESC?

Simply center the stick or servo tester. The esc will be armed or ‘initialized’ once it receives a 1500us pulse, which is center stick on most RC transmitters.