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Air Unit - MMCX Connector Broke Off
1849 29 1-14 06:50
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RGMGFitness
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United States
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Hi Guys,

Recently I crashed my quad and a small piece of the DJI Air Units antenna (ie. MMCX Antenna Port) broke off inside of the Air Unit.  It's a really small piece and hard to get a grip on with tweezers.  Anyone ever run into this and find a fix.  Trying to not buy an entirely new Air Unit if I don't have to.

It's the MMCX Antenna Port on the RIGHT Side that has the piece broke off in it.  I also included pictures below from the antenna's below so you can see the piece that actually snapped off during the impact of the crash.  Any thoughts???


image0.jpeg


Thanks in Advance,
Ron



image1.jpeg
1-14 06:50
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RGMGFitness
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You can see the antenna on the LEFT is the one that snapped off inside the Air Unit.  






1-14 06:51
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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Austria
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With a  hot airgun its quite easy to solder a new mmcx plug to it. I did that myself and it works perfectly

Something like this:
https://www.amazon.com/female-straight-coaxial-adapter-connector/dp/B00WQ4O37O
1-14 07:12
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RGMGFitness
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm Posted at 1-14 07:12
With a  hot airgun its quite easy to solder a new mmcx plug to it. I did that myself and it works perfectly

Something like this:
Hmm...not sure if that will resolve me issue.  I still have a piece of the MMCX connector stuck inside the Air Unit.  Also, it's a very tight fit because the back of the MMCX connectors butt up against the posts of my FPV frame.  Its a Rotor Riot HD1 build.  


Ideally, I'd like to remove the piece stuck inside the Air Unit.  I appreciate the input though...maybe I'm not following exactly either.  

1-14 08:07
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RGMGFitness
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Found this video.  I might be able to open up the Air Unit and replace those MMCX connectors.  I'm assuming their a standard size but will know more once I open it up.



1-14 08:40
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RGMGFitness
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We'll, I've got DJI Support looking into seeing if they can get me a replacement 'MMCX Female' connector instead of shipping the entire DJI FPV Air Unit for repair..crossing my fingers.  I called around to a few hobby shops and you can't buy these MMCX Female connectors specific to the DJI FPV Air Unit.  These are very small and made specifically for the Air Unit.  But, if anyone knows otherwise...please let me know!




DJI FPV Air Unit OPENED UP (A Look Inside)
Air Unt.jpg
1-14 10:39
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DJI Stephen
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Hello and good day Ron. I am sorry the trouble and thank you for reaching out. Since this unfortunate issue happened. Kindly please contact out DJI Support Team for further assistance at https://www.dji.com/support?site=brandsite&from=nav. We would do their best to fix the said issue and then the corresponding resolution would be provided. Again I am sorry for the trouble and thank you for your understanding.
1-14 13:56
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RGMGFitness
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Pulled apart the DJI Air Unit and was able to remove the faulty MMCX Female Connector.  Felt like it was secured pretty well to board.  Can anyone confirm if this is just a solder connection to board?  Here's a picture from the Air Unit I'm working on....

p.s.  I did reach out to DJI Support and their looking into weather or not they even carry MMCX connectors for replacement.  Waiting to hear back.

1-14 18:09
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RGMGFitness
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RGMGFitness Posted at 1-14 18:09
Pulled apart the DJI Air Unit and was able to remove the faulty MMCX Female Connector.  Felt like it was secured pretty well to board.  Can anyone confirm if this is just a solder connection to board?  Here's a picture from the Air Unit I'm working on....

p.s.  I did reach out to DJI Support and their looking into weather or not they even carry MMCX connectors for replacement.  Waiting to hear back.

After some more troubleshooting.  It appears these MMCX Female connectors are not just soldered onto the board.   They appear to have been solder dipped.  It doesn't seem possible to replace just the MMCX Female Connectors at this time.  

When you attempt to remove them you'll also take with it some of the metal on the board which is your main lead (center pin) to the board and antenna (when plugged in).  So, at this point it appears I'll need a new DJI FPV Air Unit.  

Fortunately, you can purchase just the Air Unit (without Camera attached) which can save you a few $$.  
1-16 06:12
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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RGMGFitness Posted at 1-14 08:07
Hmm...not sure if that will resolve me issue.  I still have a piece of the MMCX connector stuck inside the Air Unit.  Also, it's a very tight fit because the back of the MMCX connectors butt up against the posts of my FPV frame.  Its a Rotor Riot HD1 build.  

sure it does. i replaced this broken one
1-16 08:45
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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RGMGFitness Posted at 1-14 18:09
Pulled apart the DJI Air Unit and was able to remove the faulty MMCX Female Connector.  Felt like it was secured pretty well to board.  Can anyone confirm if this is just a solder connection to board?  Here's a picture from the Air Unit I'm working on....

p.s.  I did reach out to DJI Support and their looking into weather or not they even carry MMCX connectors for replacement.  Waiting to hear back.

have to cut it out? you should have done it with a reworkstation. you just destroyed the traces xD
1-16 08:50
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RGMGFitness
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm Posted at 1-16 08:50
have to cut it out? you should have done it with a reworkstation. you just destroyed the traces xD

Is there a video or a post anywhere that walks me through how to do that.  Because I couldn't figure out how to remove the MMCX Female Connector from the Air Unit without destroying the board?

Even took it to a FPV shop and the guy couldn't do it?  Sorry, I'm new to working on these types of components.  Any additional information you can point me too is appreciated.....
1-16 08:55
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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RGMGFitness Posted at 1-16 08:55
Is there a video or a post anywhere that walks me through how to do that.  Because I couldn't figure out how to remove the MMCX Female Connector from the Air Unit without destroying the board?

Even took it to a FPV shop and the guy couldn't do it?  Sorry, I'm new to working on these types of components.  Any additional information you can point me too is appreciated.....

it was quite easy. It needs a lot of heat. with 450 C on my reworksstation. Without it its impossible
1-16 14:51
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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157921543600926750492.jpg
IMG-20191025-WA0080.jpeg
IMG-20191026-WA0005.jpeg
1-16 15:02
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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I also added additional solder to keep it in place
1-16 15:06
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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You ripped the antenna trace put you could try to Work on IT with a knife , this requires a Lot of Skill to get IT to Work again, but IT could be done.
1-16 15:09
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RGMGFitness
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm Posted at 1-16 15:09
You ripped the antenna trace put you could try to Work on IT with a knife , this requires a Lot of Skill to get IT to Work again, but IT could be done.

Thanks for the pics and additional information.  It's appreciated...Yeah, with ripping out the trace I think that's a bit above my skill set at this time..but I do appreciate it.   
1-19 08:11
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fansf1a3923d
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm Posted at 1-16 15:02
[Image]

Can you explain how you did this? I’m trying to heat up and replace females mmcx but not sure how
4-11 16:14
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SpaceCow
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It's hard too tell the state of your air unit from the pictures. Your connectors are slightly out of focus. From what you wrote a small piece of the antenna connector is stuck inside the air unit's female connector.

I used to work at a phone repair store. A similar situation would happen with iPhones all the time. The headphone would break off inside the headphone jack of the phone. We couldn't get the broken piece out with tweezers like you are saying as well. Our solution was this. The headphone connection that would break off would leave two pieces inside. One was the metal connection. The second piece was the plastic insolation. We would take a sharp screwdriver or a sewing pin. Something sharp and very small but strong. Stab it into the broken off plastic. Then pull out at a very slight angle. This would create a griping force in the plastic part that was stick inside. and it would all come out.

Again not sure if that is useful information or not as your photo is out of focus on the connector itself so I cant see if there is any plastic insulation to grip on to. but I figured it's worth leaving the idea for you.
4-13 12:53
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djiuser_svTsi9rtdUUm
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fansf1a3923d Posted at 4-11 16:14
Can you explain how you did this? I’m trying to heat up and replace females mmcx but not sure how

you need a pair of tweezer hold the old broken connector. Than heat it up till it get loose by it self. It will get loose quit easy.
4-13 13:18
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RGMGFitness
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Thanks for all the feedback guys.  In short, I ended up buying a new Air Unit.   Some of the other tips were just a little to far above my skill set and I ruined the 'traces' earlier on trying to cut out the MMCX Female connector.  Perhaps my soldering gun just wasn't hot enough but the old connector just wouldn't come off when heat was applied.  
4-15 05:10
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pt0x
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I have the exact same problem. Can anyone post a place where you can buy these mmcx connectors? I will reach out to support first but just to be prepared. I will be able to fix this with a rework station probably.
Im in Europe, so preferably not a US store. that would cost me € 50 in shipping
4-19 14:04
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pt0x
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pt0x Posted at 4-19 14:04
I have the exact same problem. Can anyone post a place where you can buy these mmcx connectors? I will reach out to support first but just to be prepared. I will be able to fix this with a rework station probably.
Im in Europe, so preferably not a US store. that would cost me € 50 in shipping

Nevermind, found it.

For the european fixers

https://nl.rs-online.com/web/p/mmcx-connectors/7595306/
4-19 14:20
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SmooveG
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I have like four air units and experienced this issue as well.
Two times the front piece of the antenna connector remained in the socket of the air unit.
I managed to get one out of the socket using vibration. Put my quad on a hard surface and raised the throttle but not enough to take off, and the two remaining parts fell out. (gold ring and gold tube).
I did this because I know these connectors sometimes come loose in case of a crash, specially when you have the antennas mounted upright
This because the top lid of the air unit has a lip that presses against the antenna when your trying to secure it.
The second one, still have to figure out the best way to get it out without damaging the air unit.
MMCX would not have been my choice of connector for the air unit. They come loose and they break.
6-9 06:51
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mc54
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The MMCX connector design is the worst shortcoming of the entire DJI system (in my opinion).  The worst failures I have had have come directly from loose connectors, and it is something that I am always thinking about when flying, especially if I am getting a inconsistent signal.  I wish there was a less failure-prone method of antenna attachment.
6-9 07:57
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djiuser_ByPGFFvmI458
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I used a 1/8" drill bit, insert it just above the center post so not to damage it.  put a bind on the bit to where the side cuts into the broken off piece and pull out gently to not overcome the drillbits bite on the broken connector.  

It will slip a few times but with persistence I was able to get mine out without damage to the Air Unit.
6-9 07:59
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RGMGFitness
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mc54 Posted at 6-9 07:57
The MMCX connector design is the worst shortcoming of the entire DJI system (in my opinion).  The worst failures I have had have come directly from loose connectors, and it is something that I am always thinking about when flying, especially if I am getting a inconsistent signal.  I wish there was a less failure-prone method of antenna attachment.

Yeah, seems like the design here needs some work.  
6-9 08:03
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RGMGFitness
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djiuser_ByPGFFvmI458 Posted at 6-9 07:59
I used a 1/8" drill bit, insert it just above the center post so not to damage it.  put a bind on the bit to where the side cuts into the broken off piece and pull out gently to not overcome the drillbits bite on the broken connector.  

It will slip a few times but with persistence I was able to get mine out without damage to the Air Unit.

Nice!  Hadn't thought of that one...I'll keep that in the back of my mind in case I run into again.    Clearly, I'm not the only one who's had this issue.  
6-9 08:04
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djiuser_NI8Gidmw3drK
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I have the same issue, only I havent even had the chance to fly yet.  The connection is so fragile that it breaks of extremely easily and usually cannot be fixed without replacing the entire air unit.
7-24 22:35
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RGMGFitness
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djiuser_NI8Gidmw3drK Posted at 7-24 22:35
I have the same issue, only I havent even had the chance to fly yet.  The connection is so fragile that it breaks of extremely easily and usually cannot be fixed without replacing the entire air unit.

Yeah, from what I've been seeing in the comments. It's a pretty common problem.  Hopefully, they can make these connections more durable.  
7-28 07:43
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