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Old 02-07-2016, 08:56 AM   #1
romeokilo
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Default RomeoKilo's Pit

Hi all,

For the last couple of years I have been intermittently working on the pit in this thread- Obutto Console Project

During that build I bought a cheap Chinese K40 laser cutter and the build slowly turned away from the Obutto consoles and all my funds and time went into the tools rather than the pit.

After many hours (and dollars) I am now pretty happy with what I can turn out with the laser.
Still not 100% perfect and I'm still learning- but acceptable to me.

With all the time (and dollars) I've invested into tools I decided to bin the Obutto consoles idea and build a full A-10 pit.

I am still using some artistic licence here and there on the panels and changing a few things (mostly cosmetic) to fit, but its going to be much more of an A-10 style cockpit than the Obutto ever could be.

The three monitors are gone.
For now its one projector thrown on the wall, but a triple projector curved screen build is planned for when I'm in my new home toward the end of this year.

Until then its into the pit.

I bought Flims front console plans (I got the side consoles aswell but I haven't even looked at them yet) and modified them to fit my panels and monitor. I also added a whole bunch of slots and tabs, basically so it would fit together like a big jigsaw puzzle.
I then had them CNC cut from 6mm and 12mm MDF.

Here it is slotted together after I had just picked it up. No glue or screws-




This is how I intend to build up the gauges. Not a replica of an A-10 but it gets the job done. I am not sure how its going to look with some of the bezels over 30mm from the monitor though. Middle one is 12mm thick, the other two are 6mm.



Today I started gluing and bolting it all together. I was worried about how the MDF would hold up, but first impressions are good. The external skin is all MDF, but I've since bolstered up it structure with 4x2 in the corners and two aluminium brackets running behind the monitor. Its very sturdy.







Trial fitting the monitor-






This is my (6th...) prototype Landing Gear Panel and Handle. It has come a long way since the hand drilled acrylic, ink jet printouts and a castor wheel in the first thread!

Handle before gluing. Still working on where to position the LEDs for best lighting.
This one is based on a Gadroc's measurements, but because my AHCP will be lifted out of the MIP by 18mm (to clear the monitor) I'll probably have to do one with less of a bend.


Panel broken down. I added a 4th panel mounting screw and moved them around to secure the front better and minimize back light bleed, as well as adding an eBay Switch Guard.

I simplified my flaps gauge to make it much less complicated. The needle connects direct to the servo which is controlled by a Phidgets board. Ill move to Arduino and DCS bios later on once I learn it...



And trial fitting it into the MIP.



The lever mechanism. I still need to tweak it a bit- the final mechanism will be black Acrylic to minimize back light bleed around the handle. I'm also still tweaking the movement path of the handle and the spring tension.



And everything else I am working on-


Note I left the MFDs holes full size. Ill do up a bracket to fit the thrustmasters for now- but I do plan to make my own full size ones down the track.

Once I iron out all the bugs on the Landing Gear Panel I plan to do a limited run of them if anyone is keen. Ill fire up a new thread once/if that is in the works.

Last edited by romeokilo; 02-09-2016 at 08:31 AM.
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Old 02-07-2016, 10:14 AM   #2
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Awesome built! Subscribed to the thread. Looking forward to learn a bit more as I prepare myself to build one as well.
Where did you buy the panels from? Or you did them yourself?
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Old 02-07-2016, 10:25 AM   #3
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Great build your doing.
What k40 machine are you using, would you have a link.
The ones I've found seem to have very small cutting beds of 300mm x 200mm.
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Old 02-07-2016, 06:00 PM   #4
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Nice work. I do like seeing people's personal builds... particularly if they give a good explanation as to why they made certain design decisions.
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Old 02-07-2016, 08:15 PM   #5
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Looking good! I love how once you have a laser cutter everything can be built out of stacks of acrylic . I'd be willing to bet that was my drawing of the landing gear handle.

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Old 02-07-2016, 10:57 PM   #6
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That's really nice job. I was thinking of using low powered Fresnel lenses for the more deeply recessed panel elements.
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Old 02-09-2016, 09:02 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AstroEma View Post
Awesome built! Subscribed to the thread. Looking forward to learn a bit more as I prepare myself to build one as well.
Where did you buy the panels from? Or you did them yourself?
Thanks! The cockpit was CNC cut for my by these guys- Branchflowers CNC. The control panels are done by me on the laser.

Quote:
Originally Posted by reaper7 View Post
Great build your doing.
What k40 machine are you using, would you have a link.
The ones I've found seem to have very small cutting beds of 300mm x 200mm.
All K40's are essentially the same design. I bought the cheapest one I could on eBay and modified/upgraded it. I'm working with that size bed- it's big enough to do all the A-10 panels one piece at a time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadroc View Post
Looking good! I love how once you have a laser cutter everything can be built out of stacks of acrylic . I'd be willing to bet that was my drawing of the landing gear handle.

Gadroc
It was yours! Updated the first post.
Plus- considering Helios is the whole basis of this pit- I wouldn't of even attempted a pit without your input! Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thick8 View Post
That's really nice job. I was thinking of using low powered Fresnel lenses for the more deeply recessed panel elements.
Interesting idea. I'll see if I can get a cheap one and experiment.


Trial fitting everything today-


The AHCP spacer is not fitted in the pic- Managed to squeeze a few more mm out of it by snapping off the solder tabs on each switch and soldering direct to them instead- so I am making another slightly thinner one.

Once everything is trial fitted I am going to route a path for the cables behind the MIP so it can be as flush to the monitor as possible. Also working on suitable brackets for the thrustmasters.

I also have realized I've made a mistake on the glare shield- the center spacers are not supposed to be as tall as the sides where the stores jettison button is (if that makes sense). Still deciding if I will re-do it or leave as is.

Here is my fuel panel broken down-


Trial fitted


It will be re-done because I'm not happy with the engraving. You can see the center dots in the 4's are not good at all. Its only a hole filler for now anyway- I don't plan on working on the actual mechanical gauge side of it until the side consoles are completed. I want to get it flyable!
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Old 02-11-2016, 04:12 AM   #8
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Finished the Thrustmaster MFD brackets.

I can not find a small 3 position rotary for the off, night, day switch anywhere! Anyone got any links? I'm hunting something reasonably priced- no need for mil-spec.
I decided to leave them off for now- I'll put normal size rotary's on my sim-specific panel which is going on the lower pedestal.





The AHCP spacer is on. You can see why I'm doing another LG Handle with less of a bend in it. I'm also not happy with the smoothness of the mechanism so back to the drawing board.






Version one of my fire handles. Still designing the pull mechanism so they are just jammed in the glare shield for the pic. Back-lit with two orange 3mm LEDs each.



HARS fast erect switch. AHCP spacer hides it completely from view, so I may make a spacer for it as well or move it completely. That and the fine engraving came out terrible- will be re done.


NMSP.


You can also see in that pic how I plan on putting red back-lit OFF labels in place of the flags- I got that idea of someone in the forum (cant remember who or where I saw that).
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Old 02-11-2016, 04:54 AM   #9
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That is a really nice pit you have got going there romeokilo Very nice indeed.

For the small 3-position rotary I have used these; http://www.mouser.dk/Search/ProductD...688-SRBV131803

Small observation which may just be my eyes cheating me. The toggle switch on your NMSP looks like the one installed is a 3 position. Unless I am mistaken it only a 2-position.

Looking forward for more pictures on your build

Cheers
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Old 02-13-2016, 08:33 AM   #10
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Please can I ask, and absolutely no disrespect to your fantastic work.

Folk are making panels but I havnt seen anyone making A-10 MFDs they just use the Thrustmaster ones?

You are all putting in heaps of effort, have the tools and capability to make them, but noone is?

Dont want to shift it off topic so will ask you direct, (with the greatest respect), Romeo, did you think of making your own MFDs and why didnt you?

Your pit is awesome btw.
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