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Jeff Goin

 
 

Communications Troubleshooting

How to get radios to work with PPG gear, Thanks to Robin Rumbolt, Nick Scholtes and others

It's rarely plug and play, especially when mixing and matching radios and helmets. Robin Rumbolt is an electronics engineer who has done extensive helmet mods and created a noise reduction kit that many pilots have added with success. He's also been kind enough to contribute to our efforts at informing pilots of solutions that us communicate.

See also reviews on various radio types used for PPG communications.

See also Robin's article on mating various aviation radio types with helmets.

Problem

Possible solution or link.

Plug Problems

My helmet has a two prong plug and my radio has a one prong hole.

Buy an adaptor that goes from the two prong to one prong plug. Oh if it were that easy. The most standard two prong helmet plugs have a 3.5mm plug for audio and a 2.5 mm plug for mic. But  most radios now use a single vary

My helmet has a one prong plug and my radio has a two prong hole.

This could be more of a problem than a mere adapter can solve. See the problem below about prong lengths.

My helmet has a small plug (2.5mm) and it fits into my radio but I can't transmit.

If your radio is a single hole motorola, these require slightly longer plugs. Carve away 1/32" inch of the radio body around the hole and it should work fine.

Noise

I hear a lot of noise and other static when people transmit.

The engine's ignition system, from coil to spark, creates a lot of energy in the radio frequency band (RF). Braided shielded cable can be used where the braided portion acts to redirect this energy away from the wires inside.

1. Get a Resister spark plug. This puts a resistor across the spark plug and reduces the RF noise generated. You can also get a resistor spark plug cap but never combine the two--it robs too much power from the spark.


Remember, If there's air there, it should be flown in!