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Building your own joystick/flight panel? Check this out...


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#81 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 13:03

Big vote for mr Bodnar - I ordered my 836X last week and it arrived today. In Japan. Very impressive!!

Is there any way to use transistors (or something) to latch the LED on or off? I reckon I would need a separate power supply for the LED's then something to detect 5V from the switch which will lock the LED on or off. I may straying into the realms of PLC's I fear…

As I said, electronics is not my forte but I'll have a bash at anything! At least EVERYTHING I would need is available from a multitude of shops a short walk away.

You could use a flip flop circuit but it's a lot of hassle you'd be better off using the switch layout I illustrated and a pulse controller discussed earlier in the thread. You can get latching buttons too this would work with lights and a pulse controller.


Thanks for that link - looks great - with all the needed stuff listed at the bottom.

No problem Peter happy to help.

Tom I thought you were still hanging round outside the post office? :mrgreen:
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#82 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 13:54

Finally the LED

Right nothing fancy about this it's simply an LED that tells Tom his controllers plugged in.
The output on Bodnar controller is 5v. LED's are not 5v and won't last very long at all with this voltage/current so we need to add a resistor to reduce the current/voltage. There are hundreds of LED resistor calculators all over the net but make sure you know the specification of your LED when you buy it or you won't be able to use one.

http://led.linear1.org/1led.wiz" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://led.linear1.org/1led.wiz

Myself I don't use these calculators. I have something called a decade resistance box. It's basically just a huge variable resistor. I start with a very high resistance and reduce it until I get the brightness I feel is right. Then I read off the number I have and add a resistor of that value in series. I found the best value for this LED to be 220R. You can do this too by buying a resistor selection pack. Start with a 500R resistor and work your way down to a brightness you're happy with. If you use a calculator it will give you the brightest figure which is more often than not too bright and can be annoying in low lighting conditions. One thing to note here LED's are diodes therefore it is important you connect them the right way round.

Scroll down about half way on this page:

http://www.antsnest....Garage/LEDs.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.antsnest....Garage/LEDs.php

OK here we go

Image

Image

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There are two dedicated 5v pins on the BU0836 but no dedicated ground so since we had a spare potentiometer channel it was easier to use the 5v and ground from that.

Image

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LED's finished.
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#83 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 14:10

Finally (phew)

The finished controller:

Image

Image

Next to its now updated and more neatly wired brother:

Image

I hope some of you found that interesting and helpful.

Cheers :-)
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#84 ImPeRaToR

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 14:11

Peter you and Ben (Honeymonster) should go into business making these! You'd clean up- use your contacts in China to manufacture them en-masse! :)

Yes please do, and be sure to send me evaluation examples :lol:
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#85 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 14:20

Yes please do, and be sure to send me evaluation examples :lol:

No problem Imp but you'll have to turn thenm upside down no? :?

:mrgreen:
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#86 ImPeRaToR

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 14:21

:? :| Well played :S!:
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#87 O_Ghost

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 14:59

I went shopping yesterday and came back poorer but with everything I need to get my box built (Japan is great for electronic bits).

I even got some JK flip flip IC's for about 40p each! I'll post some pics if anyone is interested when I get back after a work trip this week, but the plan is to run 10 seperate latched led's from the flip flops, the IC's going onto project board. The circuit is quite straightforward with only the addition of 2 x 1k resistors per latch needed - everything else being bridging or switch inputs and led outputs. I'll attach the resistor (for the led) directly to the led leg.

I've proven the circuit on breadboard so I know it works :)

My next challenge is working out a nice method of labelling everything.. And buy a drill. And a heat gun.
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#88 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 15:15

Sounds excellent post as many pictures as possible. :D

This thread is all about sharing and raising the bar. Lets give those joystick manufacturers a run for their money. :mrgreen:
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#89 Tom-Cundall

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 15:32

Just given the controller Ben made for me a spin. Awesome.

Great quality and the Xbox stick means it's a piece of piss to track planes around the sky!

Nice having mixture and radiator sliders and a solid flick switch to fire up the engine.

Cheers mate awesome work! :)
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#90 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 17:52

Pleasure Anthony glad your enjoying it. Hopefully this thread will inspire some interesting new ideas and creations.

:D
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#91 O_Ghost

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 10:34

Ok so here is where I've got to..

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A lot of bits

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Latched LED prove out

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Layout - still have to place some more switches, but I'm going with this

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Bodnar module mounted and LED control board in position

More to follow tomorrow I hope!
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#92 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 11:05

Ghost that looks truly excellent chap. The quality of the parts you are using look outstanding. I cant wait to see this come together. :D
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#93 O_Ghost

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Posted 19 June 2011 - 10:24

Today's progress:

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Panel drilled

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Populated, pity about the paint disaster for the weapon release switches.

Next up is the wiring - I haven't got a lot of room so it's going to be interesting!
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#94 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 19 June 2011 - 11:44

You'll be able to tidy that painted edge up with a bit of thinners and if neccesary, then put a small black border around it. Touch in the missing bits and it will be perfect. Looking good so far. :mrgreen:
There's 15 cables there for your pots alone so I reckon you'll have some fun squeezing it all in. It will be worth it when it's done though for sure. :)

Keep us updated. :mrgreen:
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#95 Maico

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 07:17

Go Ghost! Great read you guys. Honeymonster, your posts are most excellent. I am very appreciative of how you explain everything. It really motivates me to try to tackle a project like this.

Thanks Guys

Maico
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#96 O_Ghost

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 15:14

Unfornately I'm away on business this week so no more progress until Thursday at the earliest :(

I did get the pot wiring sorted last night and have also started putting the LED controller together - once that's complete I can test it and drill the case for the standoffs. Pictures will follow!

The one problem with being stuck in a hotel is one gets ideas. I'm now wondering if I can do a bomb counter :) It's like a Dirty Harry thing when I'm flying with a 16 bomb loadout - did I drop 14 or 16 bombs, but in the heat of the moment I kinda lost count. With the deadly flak at low level on the Oceanic server "Do you feel lucky punk?" applies to me as I take just one more run…
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#97 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 15:19

The one problem with being stuck in a hotel is one gets ideas. I'm now wondering if I can do a bomb counter :) It's like a Dirty Harry thing when I'm flying with a 16 bomb loadout - did I drop 14 or 16 bombs, but in the heat of the moment I kinda lost count. With the deadly flak at low level on the Oceanic server "Do you feel lucky punk?" applies to me as I take just one more run…

This circuit will do nine and would just need a few modifications to do 20…

http://elektroniksfo...ingle-Digit.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://elektroniksfo...s.com/projects/ … -Digit.php

:mrgreen:

EDIT:

2 digit

http://www.elektroni...r-Two-Digit.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.elektroni...rkids.com/proje … -Digit.php

Just use a double pole bomb button and job done. Of course this will only work if you drop bombs individualy. It would be better to have one that counts down and up. You could use one button to set the number of bombs then as you press the bomb button it would go down until it reached zero.

You can buy off the shelf counters too depends how far you want to go. Still it looks like you're enjoying building your own circuits. :)
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#98 O_Ghost

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 15:37

You bad bad man. I read somewhere that the clock can be double pulsed with only one input signal so maybe that will do the job for 2 bombs. Shopping again Saturday!!

I'm gonna need a bigger box.
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#99 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 17:11

Sounds like a plan! Of course you won't need the 555 timer bit so it should be pretty simple to construct. There's sure gonna be a few cables in your box though. :)

Also thanks for the heads up Maico if you do decide to have a go at building something please share it with us. :)
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#100 brando

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 11:32

Aah, I finally made it into this thread - and how it's grown since I first dropped the OP a pm in the Ubi-zoo. :S!: Ben.

I've been collecting bits since you kindly replied to me and I'm stuck now, waiting for the delivery of 14 chunky buttons of the momentary kind, lost somewhere betwixt Wales and Devon. I wish all suppliers could be as conscientious as Mr Bodnar, with his next day response.

So I've now acquired a BU0836X, 3xP260 pots, & 1 3-turn pot for pitch trimming, from LB and a nice collection of knobs and switches from a couple of Ebay suppliers. I'm especially pleased with the large and heavy, 58mm Marconi tuning knob destined for the pitch trimming, as well as the winged 27mm radio knobs (x3) and chicken-head switch knobs that are all rather old-fashioned in their way. The missing buttons are fairly large too, requiring a 16mm mounting hole - so I don't expect to be missing any important pushes in the heat of combat.

I'm planning to use some of the pots and switches directly on or around the deck of the CH Force stick that I'm busy converting. The rest will be going into the control panel area that will be running around the left side of my desk. I'll be building that from timber noggins supporting small rectangles of wood-veneered flooring in a concave arc. The panels will slope back about twenty degrees from the vertical and I'll use thin section beading to separate them (and hide all the mis-cut edges!) The whole idea is to put everything within easy reach of my left hand, which is very, er, handy if you are, like me, missing a right hand!

Placement of controls then is a matter of having the most important ones very close by. Less used ones can go to the periphery of the interface, perhaps those used on the ground or from a well trimmed level position in flight. Time and experience will tell. The use of wood will give a feeling of early flying machines even if none of it will resemble any aircraft ever flown. It'll be a wooden panel, possibly with a bit of leather along the top and some bits of brass and steel tacked on, and I'll be happy to let my imagination do the rest ;)

I'll be coming back for some tips on how to wire up this beast; until then, adieu, brave aviators! :)

Brando

Attached File  switches 002.jpg   958.92KB   291 downloads
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#101 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 23:17

Welcome Ross nice to see you here, you'll find the chaps and chapets here a most helpful and friendly bunch. :)

I look forward to seeing your wonderful creation come together.

Ben
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#102 O_Ghost

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 00:16

Ok, quick update.


Image

Basically, the LED controller board is finished, tested (disappointingly I may need a "debouncing" circuit, as the LED's latch unreliably due to the mechanical contacting of the switches - space will be an issue though!!) and fitted to the box.

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The Pots are wired and I've started to put the common grounding circuit in.


Next up will be the switch wires and then I can connect everything up and test it. If I can get a good run at it, the Ghost Mk1 controller will be live in the next few days!

I see this as a work in progress so if anybody thinks of features that would be useful (I'm already designing a bomb counter - I lose count after the first 3 or 4 ::)) or other functions that would be good fun let me know!.

One feature is already redundant after a "D'oh!" moment at the weekend when someone on the RoF forums suggested using the toe brake axis of my rudder pedals for FOV zoom. Brilliant, works for me!
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#103 J5_Rumey

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 05:30

Guys have been following this thread and finally got the clot to order my own stuff. Honeymonster and others thanks a lot for the tips, will prove invaluable. Will take 1 potentiometer out of the box and attach it to my Alb dva control coulumn I am building. This will be fun.
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#104 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 09:34

Sound interesting Rumey make sure you post some pics. It will be nice to see a custom stick too. :)
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#105 Vertigo72

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 09:53

Very interesting and inspiring thread guys. Awesome work.
Im tempted to try something myself, but the problem is I need a keyboard (if for no other reason as chat), need a mouse (to operate the UI), a joystick and then this device.

I think it would make sense to make a bigger box, but integrate a compact netbook like keyboard and a touchpad. Just a thought.
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#106 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 10:47

I have one of these cordless things for my media PC in the lounge:

http://cgi.ebay.co.u...=item19c0e88f91" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://cgi.ebay.co.u...ni-Wireless-Han … 19c0e88f91

The keyboard would be way to hard to use but the touchpad is excellent.

I can't say I've had issues as you describe as my desk is staggered on 2 levels so the keyboard is below and slightly closer. Having said that I rarely use chat while flying as it's too much of a distraction especially when you're mumbling away on comms already. The built in mouse pad would be useful I guess, but again my mouse is on the same lower level as my keyboard within easy reach.

I guess it's a possibility but the box would be crazy huge.
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#107 Vertigo72

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 12:03

Think I found something:
Image
http://www.google.co...ved=0CGMQ8wIwBQ" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.google.com/products/catalog? … CGMQ8wIwBQ

Perhaps thats too small to type on though, but there are several similar keyboards for ipads and the like.
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#108 O_Ghost

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 09:51

Deleted (double post)
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#109 O_Ghost

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 09:52

Finished - it works and I've already thought of some more switches! I might label it up but no real need.

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All wired up

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OMG

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Done
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#110 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 02 July 2011 - 14:17

Looks excellent Ghost, well done chap. Glad you got the bounce sorted out. :D
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#111 brando

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 11:15

Hi! I thought I'd check in with a sitrep and a tip that will help panel builders.

After getting let down by an uncommunicative and un-businesslike seller on Ebay to the tune of all the push-buttons I'd ordered :roll: I dipped back in and found a really super marketplace. Electronics heaven, in fact, and the owner is a splendid chap.
brimalcomponents is the place, and the seller's name is Andrew Duckworth. I recommend him highly.

Back at the beginning of the thread, Ben mentioned those little push-buttons which were poor quality and had to be stripped out… This guy has the same-size buttons,but with a Nickel Chrome Case - Industrial Standard. At less than £3 for a pack of 5, and with 4 colours to pick 'n mix, these look like serious contenders. Inland postage is exceptionally quick and he also does international.

I had already picked up a few pieces from this source - Ten normal-sized momentary push buttons in nickel-chrome - as well as a splendid starter button, 15mm in a 27mm bezel :) The quality and finish are very good, so I opted for 20 of the mini pb's too.

Attached File  new_buttons.jpg   668.73KB   494 downloads Attached File  80.jpg   1.49KB   494 downloads

This last batch should arrive Tuesday morning and then it's down to work.

CYL :S!:
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#112 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 13:55

That guy has an excellent selection of electrical bits, nice find Ross. He even has different coloured slider tops. I might change a few of mine to make them easier to identify in the heat of battle.

:D
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#113 brando

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 18:30

And I won a bid - 99pence on Ebay for…Attached File  nicenob.jpg   4.99KB   468 downloads
possibly good for a rotary encoder methinks

8-)
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#114 O_Ghost

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 05:34

A question for Mr HQ_Honeymonster (congrats on getting your tag by the way!):

How does the 6x6 switch matrix work? I understand that if I use momentry switches I don't need diodes either! Is it right that I run 2 wires to the switch and then connect between the nodes on the 6x6? I'm assuming that the rows and columns only connect through the switch.

The reason I'm asking is that others on Oceanic have expressed a desire to have a Ghost Mk1 Controller so in order to keep costs down I'm planning to use the basic 0836 not the X, but need a minimum of 18 button assignments. No LED's this time to keep it simple!
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#115 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 08:07

You got it Ghost just through the switches.

Column 1 - Row 1
Column 1 - Row 2
Column 1 - Row 3
Column 1 - Row 4
Column 1 - Row 5
Column 1 - Row 6

(Add a diode in between each connection for toggles)

Then the same with columns 2,3,4,5,6.

You will need to figure a way of connecting 6 wires to each pin unless you make some kind of breakout board like I did. You could just use a big piece of connector block or solder them all to a single cable like I did originally.
The diodes just go between each connection from the column to the row. Easy enough to solder inline or make a little board like the picture I posted further back. You don't need diodes with momentary buttons but if you press a few buttons at once you will get lots of buttons coming on if they share a row or column (back feed). In fact enough buttons pressed in certain combinations cause issues even with the diodes, luckily I only have 3 non-momentary toggles so managed to avoid this issue with my controller. Tom also has only one switch and doesn't seem to have any issues.

Cheers
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#116 Vertigo72

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 08:06

question: does RoF have a software interface to read out instrument data? Im currently writing my "hello world" app on my new android phone, and I was thinking of trying something more useful and challenging next, like a RoF instrument cluster or something.
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#117 O_Ghost

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 11:26

That would be cool Skinny.
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#118 J5_Rumey

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 22:40

Here is something for you gents to try: Speed contoled fans.

I just found this today. x-sim software Stareted tinkering with it, sould be able to interface it with rof. Havent gotten far yet. But seems that you would be able to get a lot of vaules out and then apply to intruments, fans, hydralics,gauges and so on. Ohh my when I tried to tell the wife she just shock her head, she know what this can do to me. :x

Anyone give it a go with rof?
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#119 hq_Honeymonster

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 08:19

The fans idea is cool and has been mentioned before but this is the best effort I've seen yet. It would give you and excellent idea of speed and energy but would also blow all your paperwork around the room and make you about as popular as crabs with the Mrs. Add a castor oil drip into the fan outlet and a pair of goggles, some tactile transducers, bit of carbon monoxide…

Nope modified R360 is where it's at, when my Camel spins I want to spin with it! :mrgreen:

As for interfacing gauges I like this idea but it gives you the same kind of advantage as simple/HUD gauges do. In fact if the simple/HUD gauges were made to look realistic and you could run them on a separate monitor you'd have a very similar setup. As soon as you make gauges easier to see you have gained an unfair advantage really (that's why most servers turn them off). This is the one thing that puts me off this idea, that is unless you make a realistic cockpit to go with them. :D
Ghosts bomb counter is one thing but having a huge rev counter positioned on top of your monitor…
I don't think others without similar equipment would appreciate it.

Still if someone can get information out the game with this software I'd be very interested to know about it.
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#120 J5_Rumey

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 13:55

The fans idea is cool and has been mentioned before but this is the best effort I've seen yet. It would give you and excellent idea of speed and energy but would also blow all your paperwork around the room and make you about as popular as crabs with the Mrs. Add a castor oil drip into the fan outlet and a pair of goggles, some tactile transducers, bit of carbon monoxide…


:lol: :lol: :lol:

Just what I thought. About the guages I gues it would, but would also add imersion. I am hopeing that at some point I will have enough money to realise my Alb Dva cocpit build includeing guages and parts of top and lower wing, whn and if that happens I think the x-sim will come in handy.
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