I love my Jumper. Yes, I said it, even though the younger sibling has been dominating the market. Back in 2019, I was in need of a new radio and bought into the craze of the 4in1 multi-protocol that can bind to almost anything. No more being awkwardly positioned in the middle between a DX6 and a Taranis QX7s. 5000mAh battery mod from rcbatterykit, check. TBS external module, check. Switched out all the ribbon cables, check. Since then, it has commanded from tiny whoops, to 7" long range quads, fixed wing airplanes, and a small toyish helicopter.
However, I felt like it was missing something. To be fairly honest, the DX6 had a tad bit better gimbal feel and the QX7s felt more rugged in build quality. Yet, it did what I wanted it to do and it was good at it.
So this is where we ended up, attempting to transplant the M9 gimbals into the Jumper T16.
Doing a quick web search landed me with Romushok and self proclaimed, "first M9 gimbal transplant to the T16". I have already ordered a set of M9 and had my radio opened to figure out how to fit the gimbals in.
After doing my own measurements, I went ahead and hacked the plastic off one end to give it clearance.
However, what Mr. Romushok didn't have was a set of RadioMaster aluminum plates. He ended up hacking away at the original M9 plates to make them fit but the RadioMaster's plate fell right into the slot like a glove.
I wanted to make it look as clean as possible so I took it over to a buddy of mine, which conveniently runs a machine shop, and asked him nicely to make some clearance hole / taper to the plate. Shout out to KT Tech Inc.
So, the aluminum plate will be attached to the rest of the gimbal housing by those 3 newly drilled holes while using the existing non-magnetic screws supplied by the M9. (Not sure what type of metal the screws are, but they are definitely not magnetic)
Due to the design of the M9, I dremeled out some holes using the existing holes on the plate as a guide for clearance of the screws that will hold everything to the radio.
Now the gimbal and the plate are attached via 3x non magnetic screws and have the clearance for the 4x screws that will keep the gimbal attached to the rest of the radio. (The open notches on the top and bottom is where the screws will go in to attach gimbal to the radio)
If you look close, you can see the 4x screws on the corners of each gimbal. To keep it from fall out, I added M2 washers to push against the screws.
Doing a few slightly aggressive pulls for testing, it still remained in place. Also, the circular plastic pieces that the screws go into actually holds on to the aluminum plate so it worked out extremely well. (Hence why they fit like a glove)
Another modification is to flip the gimbal sensors upside down as OpenTX does not allow a permanent inversion for the flight surfaces. You can go ahead and invert all signals in the "output" page but have to do it for all the models you bind to or if your quad uses Betaflight, you can do that by changing rxrange.
However, this is just too much of a hassle for me so went ahead and thoroughly tested the upside down configuration and no issues so far.
The Jumper T16 has a 5 pin while the M9 uses 6 wires. Looking at Romushok's diagram and also double check with a multi-meter, the required wires are only 4x; 1-power, 1-ground, 1-signal, 1-signal.
Giving into my semi perfectionism, I went ahead and sliced and crimped. I merged the 2x power and 2x ground and crimped to pin and the 2x signal wires independently. So, it is a total of 4x wires and placed it into a 4 pin housing.
I forgot to take a picture but the pins are in this order that goes in the existing Jumper T16 gimbal pin slot:
Top: Signal (blue wire)
2nd: Signal (yellow wire)
3rd: 3.3v Power (red wire)
4th: Ground (black wire)
5th: *leave unpinned*
Also, if you ever get a gimbal looking like this, (see picture to the left) most likely the gimbal is not getting power and check your + and - wires.
The final product looks like this... Perfect and buttery smooth. Stay tuned for this bad boy to be featured in our future videos.