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VKB/Airrow extension

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I've bought one of these cheaper joysticks with the intention of making an extension for it. Basically, I want the base on the floor and the grip just above my knees - about 80cm to the top of the grip, so we're talking 63cm extension (about 25"). Just for flying helicopters.


Anyone done this already? Be keen to hear of any experience.


I think aluminium or maybe hollow brass would be OK so it doesn't have too much weight against the centring.



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The only Gladiator with extension DIY I see around is this:




No details about "how to" (the focus of the topic is add buttons to Gladiator grip, not the extension) nor info why the guy use the base inverted.




The practice maybe show that 80 cm is not good idea...


Anyway for DIY nothing is impossible, eventually the job may don't result in an "improvement". :)

Edited by Sokol1_br
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Thanks for the links - that thread on the IL-2 forum looks very interesting (but it takes a long time to translate everything with Google Translate - but I'm getting there) - just a shame I can't look at the pictures without logging in. I'll try my log-in for the English forum tomorrow and see if that does it.


If I manage to get it to work, I'll post it on here. I can always start with 80cm and reduce it until it is okay, then put a support of the required height under the base.

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This has worked out very well - and it took just a couple of hours and I've got a fantastic helicopter cyclic!


It works really well in Black Shark - never experienced anything like it, even with my extended Warthog stick.


First extended by 27cm:




Then decided to try it heli-style and it worked very well:




So I plugged it in, moved my pedals and went for a couple of test flights in Black Shark 1.0.2 - it was pretty good as is, but once I'd tightened up the saturation a bit, it was even better.








I made some videos of the process, which I will upload tomorrow.


This is well worth doing - turns a pretty cheap stick into The Business! :thumbup:

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Okay, testing results are:


1: I had to remove the top part of the extension. It's a shame, as it was the perfect height, but unfortunately it needs a lot of room to move it in all directions. Yes, you can reduce the movement required by tuning the axes, but this can make it overly sensitive in some modules.


2: I tried it full length in Black Shark 1.0.2, using the axis tune to reduce the movement required in X and Y axes, and it worked very well indeed - this, in a central position, just in front of my chair.

When I tried the same in DCS World 2, it was quite good, but as mentioned, needed more room and got a bit over sensitive.


3: After reducing to the initial length of 27cm, I did a test with the Gazelle in 1.5.8 and found it very sensitive (with standard axis - no playing with tune or curves) and in fact, although it is accurate due to the hall sensors, the response was always delayed slightly.

Due to this, the Gazelle was very easy and smooth to control in flight, but landing and taking off were a nightmare.

I was using the stick like this on a chair, to my right side.


So it will take a lot of fiddling with axis tune and curves, for each module individually, to get a decent set-up. Although, once set-up, I can see it being very effective and a joy to use.

Edited by Brixmis
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  • 1 month later...

Impressive work. How is this holding up?


I was under the impression/told the base and gimbal weren't strong enough to withstand the forces - you find that is not the case with lighter materials?


Certainly a project I'd like to try.


Thanks for sharing.

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I have the puma helicopter controls and they turned the grip 8 degrees iirc to lesson stress from holding the grip since in helicopters your hand is constantly adjusting the cyclic

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