how to get raw radio components from RC car and hook up to arduino?

So, I found this old radio-controllled car when I was cleaning my room, and I hacked the heck out of it :stuck_out_tongue: I took out the main circuit board(s) for the transmitter and the reciever, and then tried some circuit-bending, and got to the point where I could press a button hooked up to the transmitter, and the reciever would then light up an LED. (no arduino involved)

Now, that was fairly straight-forward -- I just replaced the motor ports on the reciever with LEDs and resistors, and stuck some jumper wires in a button on the transmitter and hooked those up to a transistor circuit. However, what I want to do is transmit data from one arduino board to another using the radio module. Now, techically, I could do this by sending ticks in the normal way using the previously described circuit, but that would be ridiculously slow. Say I want to transmit 3 bytes from the arduino and the transmitter takes 10 milliseconds to transmit a signal. There are 8 bits in a byte, so 3 bytes * 8 bits = 24, 24 bits * 2 for on/off binary = 48, 48 signals * 10 ms = 480 ms total. That's almost half a second to transmit just three bytes.

To solve this, I want to harvest just the raw radio components from the transmitter and receiver so that it can be hooked up to the arduino and used basically like an IR LED and receiver. (I could just use IR, but I vastly prefer radio, because field of view isn't a problem, range is increased, and it's more reliable outdoors.)

So, long story short, what components should I look for and how should I attach them? That is, if this is even a good idea... if it would be next to impossible or something, please feel free to alert me of my idiocy :stuck_out_tongue: and as always, your help is much appreciated!

In almost all RC toys the radios are implemented in a chip that includes the receiver and decoder. The only outputs from the chip are decoded motor control signals. You can't tap into the raw RC signal. If you want to communicate data you might consider a pair of OOK (On/Off Keying) radios or a pair of 2.4 GHz transceivers. They generally cost under $5.

ahh ok. thanks; I'll look into that!