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Old 07-26-2008, 07:15 AM   #1
Markdude
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Default Label Maker for Joystick

Hey guys, I believe soon I am going to be upgrading to a CH Fighterstick and Pro Throttle, and to spiff up the look a little bit, I am thinking about getting a cheap label maker and labeling the buttons on the stick. I've been looking on Amazon but I really have no idea which one to use. So far, the smallest tape size I've come across is 3/8" in width, and I don't have any way to measure it on hand, but that seems like it might be a bit too big since some of the labels on the throttle controls will be pretty close together.

I was wondering if anyone could recommend me a label maker that would suit this purpose. Basically, I would like one that can print very small and fine/neat labels, that either have white text on clear tape or white text on black tape. Any suggestions?

Last edited by Markdude; 07-26-2008 at 11:43 PM.
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Old 07-26-2008, 07:22 AM   #2
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By the way, I'm at Davis-Monthan AFB in Tucson, AZ (A-10 training base!) for a PDT (I'm in ROTC and this is basically an incentive trip to show us what the 'real' AF is like and how a base operates; it's basically a paid vacation and it kicks ass), and after doing tons of other cool stuff (like watching A-10's launch rockets and strafe targets at less than a mile away at the range, touring C-130's, C-17's, and HH-60's, and watching them test restored F-4s from the control tower), today we got some time in the A-10 simulators. Well, actually they have two sets. There are the full cockpit A-10A simulators with the 150 degree field of view, but they weren't available because some pilots were doing checkrides in them. But they have more simplified A-10C simulators that are designed basically just to teach the differences in weapon employment from the A to C model (active joystick, throttle, HUD, ICP, and MFD controls), and we got to spend some time in them. They were a ton of fun, and after using that sim's HOTAS and feeling the precision and tension, I am definitely spoiled and my X-52 just won't do any more. I don't expect the CH to be up to par with these sims obviously, but I think it's closer to what I'm looking for since the X-52 kind of feels like a toy.

I'm also getting a KC-135 ride next Wednesday.
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Old 07-26-2008, 11:44 AM   #3
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Hi MarkDude,

I honestly wouldn't bother with labels for your controls. CH controllers come with a fantastic utility called CM Print which will take a controller map file and produce a high resolution image of each of your controls overlaid with the assignments you created.

If you're anything like me, you'll also spend a lot of time tweaking your settings and have multiple profiles depending on which aircraft you're flying at the time which would definitely negate a lot of the benefits on on-stick labels.

I'll upload a couple of images for reference in a few minutes.

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Last edited by Murphyd; 07-26-2008 at 12:23 PM.
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Old 07-26-2008, 08:00 PM   #4
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Hey, thanks for the reply.

I actually found an image online kind of like that and I am already mapping out some controls, lol.

The labels are pretty much for aesthetic purposes only. I am going to be purchasing a set of X-Keys soon which will have most of my non-HOTAS controls (engines, ICP, master modes, etc.), so I am going to be keeping my HOTAS controls pretty simple and relatively similar from game to game/ac-to-ac, so I don't think that it will be a problem. I'll have the controls memorized before too long anyway, so it's not really for reference, just to look cool basically. It also won't be intricately detailed labels, just simple stuff like "Trim" "TMS" "Airbrake" "Rdr Slew" etc.
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Old 07-26-2008, 08:27 PM   #5
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I also had a quick question about the programming controls for CH. Is it possible to program a certain button so that the first time it is pressed it does a certain command, and then the second time it is pressed it does a different command? For instance, I would like to have a button pressed the first time designate a target, and undesignate it the next time I press it. Is that possible?
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Old 07-26-2008, 09:08 PM   #6
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Yes. That is simply a single keypress as the "tab" key toggles a lock/ unlock. No special script required.
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Old 07-26-2008, 09:22 PM   #7
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Cool, got it.

Btw, is there any chance someone could upload their key command chart? I don't have Lock On installed on my laptop but I'd like to start mapping some things out.

EDIT: Never mind, I found them in Kon's starter pack. Thanks!

Last edited by Markdude; 07-26-2008 at 10:36 PM.
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Old 07-27-2008, 10:02 PM   #8
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I downloaded the CH software and programmed everything already.

I also made a really ghetto layout with an image I found on the web.

Here is my LOMAC setup:





And here is my RedViper setup:





As you can see, I'm to keep as many of the commands the same or very similar on both sims. Right now, for LOMAC, I can't really think of anything to put on the hat that is used for Display Management in RedViper (toggling SOI, HSD distance, etc.), so some of those commands are blank. But that hat is actually going to be used for POV in both games until I get TrackIR. If anyone has any ideas, I'd appreciate it. Keep in mind I'm trying to keep the commands similar (ie: trying to avoid stuff like button A controls airbrake in one sim and controls jettison weapons in another sim). Also wondering what to do about the throttle hat used for radar gain/bar scan in RedViper. I've got it set up to change the radar azimuth scan in LOMAC, but I can't think of anything similar enough to radar gain in LOMAC since you don't need it for AA and the A-10 doesn't have a radar (I don't fly Russian planes). Any ideas are welcome.

On the topic at hand, I've decided the labels aren't really a big deal, but once again, keeping all the commands the same in different games is a major plus.

I'm also going to be purchasing a set of X-Keys to use as an upfront control panel:



Hopefully with this, I'll barely ever have to use my keyboard at all. Obviously, some of these commands will be used in one sim but not another (ie: no 2nd engine commands in RedViper), but I think I've got most of my bases covered. The numbered ICP commands in the center are going to be directly mapped to the actual ICP commands in RedViper, but in LOMAC they will just be mapped to numbers so I can use this for radio and such (the COMM button is going to be mapped to bring up the radio command list). Meanwhile, there's some other numbered buttons on the right. For LOMAC, these buttons will be mapped to the respective function above the number (extra radar modes, dump fuel, single/pair bombs, salvo mode, etc). For RedViper, these will be used as regular numbers, once again for radio communication. Because of all the commands at my fingers here, I think I also won't need to use multiple modes on the Fighterstick and Throttle.

Anyway, I'm pretty excited now and just wanted to share that. Any feedback is welcome.

My list of stuff to buy: CH Fighterstick, CH Pro Throttle, CH Pro Pedals, ButtKicker Gamer, TrackIR 4

I can't wait to have a pimped out flight sim rig.

Last edited by Markdude; 07-27-2008 at 10:16 PM.
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