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Introducing the DFDT Cockpit Project


Joe Kurr
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As several people within our team were building a cockpit, or planning to build one,

we decided it would be cool to combine the efforts and build a completely interactive cockpit

instead of several 'standard' pits.

This new cockpit will be modelled after the basic Su-27 found in Lockon: Flaming Cliffs.

 

At this moment we're still in the very early stadium of designing and testing.

The plan is to make most of the instruments to work using the export features in Lockon.

We could of course use the SimMeters solution for a quick start, but we decided to design and build everything ourself.

 

Some key features planned for our cockpit are:

- Analog mechanical gauges, such as AoA meter, G-meter, engine management, oil pressure, etc

- Working buttons and switches

- A remodelled stick resembling the one found in the real Su-27

- A dual sliding throttle, as found in the Su-27

- Easy to build and disassemble, using the same system as found in the Akers-Barnes pit.

 

Currently there are four people involved in this project:

- LigerZero: Overall cockpit assembly

- Wasserfall: Instrument panels

- HPO: Stick design

- Joe Kurr: Software and electronics

 

Here are some early pics of our progress so far (I'll include more images later today when I get home):

 

The front panel:

paneelweblz6.jpg

 

3D preview of the new stick:

flanker-stick.jpg

 

We plan to do a small presentation of this project at the upcoming Lowland Tiger Meet in Ahaus,

where we will also be demonstrating prototypes of some parts we've already made.

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Dutch Flanker Display Team | LLTM 2010 Tiger Spirit Award
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Wow, guys, that is soooooo cool!:thumbup:

Pity I mostly fly the US buckets...

Looking forward to seeing you all again on LLTM.

 

When JaBoG32_Laud sees this post, he will marry you all once he regains his conciousness...:)

"For aviators like us, the sky is not the limit - it's our home!"

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I use a keyboard controller from an old PS/2 keyboard to connect to the PC.

The controller will be connected to an interface I'm still working on, which in turn will be connected to ten pulse generators which will be triggered by the switches.

The buttons will be connected directly to their corresponding pins in the keyboard matrix.

This way, when I flick a switch or press a button, Lock On receives a normal keystroke as if I were using the keyboard :)

 

Here are some pics showing what I'm working on:

 

1. Mapping out the keyboard matrix (this has to be done for every type of keyboard we use)

keyboard-mapping.jpg

 

2. Three hours have passed, mapping is finally complete

keyboard-mapping-2.jpg

 

3. I have connected a floppy cable to the keyboard controller (quite difficult in fact, because the connector pads have a carbon layer over them)

controller.jpg

 

4. Testing the pulse generator. This will give a 0.1 second pulse to the main interface, which will then trigger the keyboard controller

The LED is there to see if it works.

pulse-generator.jpg

 

5. PCB design for the pulse generator is complete. I couldn't get it any smaller than this using standard components :)

pulse-PCB.jpg

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Dutch Flanker Display Team | LLTM 2010 Tiger Spirit Award
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Did you consider a card like the Hagstrom Ke72?:

http://www.hagstromelectronics.com/products/ke72.html

 

Or, if you want something cheaper, you might like the Ultimarc A-PAC:

http://www.ultimarc.com/a-pac1.html

 

You obviously know what you're doing with electronics, but these might save some time and effort.

 

Cheers,

LP

LP

 

modules:

F5-E / A4-E / A-10A / AJS-37 / SA-342 / UH-1H / Ka-50 / Mi-8 / CA

 

would buy:

OH-58 /AH-64A / AH-1 / Sepecat Jaguar / F-111

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Did you consider a card like the Hagstrom Ke72?:

http://www.hagstromelectronics.com/products/ke72.html

 

Or, if you want something cheaper, you might like the Ultimarc A-PAC:

http://www.ultimarc.com/a-pac1.html

 

You obviously know what you're doing with electronics, but these might save some time and effort.

 

Cheers,

LP

 

The Ultimarc solution looks interesting.

Problem is, I don't have a lot of money to spend at the moment, so I'm using stuff I find lying around here in my home :)

But this one is bookmarked.

Thanks for the tip.

Dutch Flanker Display Team | LLTM 2010 Tiger Spirit Award
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Keep us updated. That pit looks awesome! and it's so sweet that it's going to be interactive!

DCS Wishlist: 1) FIX THE DAMN RIVERS!!! 2) Spherical or cylindrical panorama view projection. 3) Enhanced input options (action upon button release, etc). 4) Aircraft flight parameter dump upon exit (stick posn, attitude, rates, accel, control volume, control-surface positions, SAS bias, etc). 5) ADS-33 maneuver courses as static objects. 6) Exposed API or exports of trim position and stick force for custom controllers. 7) Select auto multiple audio devices

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Problem is, I don't have a lot of money to spend at the moment, so I'm using stuff I find lying around here in my home :)

Understood - looks like you're doing a great job already.

 

The Ultimarc solution looks interesting.

Ya, that's what I decided on. Problem is that it doesn't work with toggle (on/off) switches out of the box. It expects momentary buttons only.

But I've found a software solution, using the open source program called AutoHotKey (http://www.autohotkey.com). It can translate the on and off states into button presses.

 

Good luck with your pit project. If you want to chat about pit building, there is an excellent pit builder topic on SimHQ - EECH forums here:

http://www.simhq.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=320719&page=1&fpart=14

 

Cheers,

LP

LP

 

modules:

F5-E / A4-E / A-10A / AJS-37 / SA-342 / UH-1H / Ka-50 / Mi-8 / CA

 

would buy:

OH-58 /AH-64A / AH-1 / Sepecat Jaguar / F-111

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paneelweblz6.jpg

 

3D preview of the new stick:

flanker-stick.jpg

We plan to do a small presentation of this project at the upcoming Lowland Tiger Meet in Ahaus,

where we will also be demonstrating prototypes of some parts we've already made.

 

Joe;

Very nice detail there guy ... It would be interesting to see some detail (if available) on how you put together the gages, panel and buttons...

 

Also the controller looks very interesting as well..

 

I'm sure that your aware that the Cougar has a removable handle.. I would really find your idea even more desirable if I could screw a handle like you proposed onto my existing modded Cougar...

 

Keep us informed regarding your progress, this is one of the best modern pits that I've seen, and I think its the first Russian pit that's actually going somewhere !!!

 

 

~S~

 

 

William

intel Cor i7-6700K

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Joe Kurr,

 

Mind if I ask where did you get the blueprint for the stick and throttle from?

 

We don't have any :)

The only thing we're working with at the moment are photographs and some schematic drawings from the Su27SK cockpit.

 

Joe;

Very nice detail there guy ... It would be interesting to see some detail (if available) on how you put together the gages, panel and buttons...

 

Also the controller looks very interesting as well..

 

I'm sure that your aware that the Cougar has a removable handle.. I would really find your idea even more desirable if I could screw a handle like you proposed onto my existing modded Cougar...

 

Keep us informed regarding your progress, this is one of the best modern pits that I've seen, and I think its the first Russian pit that's actually going somewhere !!!

 

 

~S~

 

 

William

 

We are aware that the cougar has a removable handle, but as we only have a Suncom set to test with, the first grip will be made compatible with the Suncom F-15E Talon stick.

But HPO has already thought of this and is working on a small extension that can be custom-made for other sets, such as the Saitek X-45 and X-52, and later maybe even the Cougar.

Dutch Flanker Display Team | LLTM 2010 Tiger Spirit Award
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We don't have any :)

We are aware that the cougar has a removable handle, but as we only have a Suncom set to test with, the first grip will be made compatible with the Suncom F-15E Talon stick.

But HPO has already thought of this and is working on a small extension that can be custom-made for other sets, such as the Saitek X-45 and X-52, and later maybe even the Cougar.

 

I was amongst a group that looked at custom building joystick heads for the cougar base. It's far from a trivial project (in itself), but would be an awesome addition for die hard fans.

 

Here are some resources worth reading:

http://forums.frugalsworld.com/vbb/showthread.php?t=98112

 

HiRevSims used to have the full process documented and screenies, but they seem to have taken it down. (Bummer).

 

Good luck and hope it works out.

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Panels

 

Hello all

 

I like to explain how i made the Instrumentpanel in short,

After making the drawings, refering to photo's and some nice drawings i got

from Andrey chizh (Thanks again) i decided to make the panel in the following way: (At that stage there were no plans of working instruments yet)

 

In the first picture you can see the instrument roundels, they were

lasercut out of 3mm black acrylic sheet (some roundels still have the protective foil in place).

 

ringenbs5.jpg

 

The second picture shows the instrumentpanel, this is made of 5mm thick clear acrylic sheet, also lasered, (the greenish look is from the protective layer still in place).

The dark coloured foil is a paint mask for the instruments, the whole panel

then was sprayed in Flanker grey/blue

 

transparantke6.jpg

 

Next you see the painted panel without the mask, so you will have a clear(instrument) glass, still with the green protective sheet at the back.

 

gespotenzq4.jpg

 

This is the digital print i made (largeformat solvent printer) it is in mirror reflection, the idea is to apply it to the back of the panel so you can see the dials through the masked roundels.

 

printmt0.jpg

 

This picture shows the whole idea, panel with digitalprint and the acrylic roundels placed.

 

voorbeeldlinksringenpu1.jpg

 

 

Thank you for watching, in the next post you will see some more details.

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Intel Core i5-9600K, Gigabyte Z390 AORUS PRO, 16GB Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro, Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2080 WINDFORCE 8G

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Great, thanks for posting. Lets hope that there will be some plans available for the Kamov pit from BlackShark too..

 

Btw. I don't understand why you are not using some advanced key emulator platform, perhaps something like IOCP/SIOC and keycards from opencockpits.com

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best looking pit project i have ever seen, and i have seen a few :)

top effort to joe and team.:thumbup:

 

amazing detail on the gauges,

is the idea to eventually have them working, or remain static?

 

would be neat to incorperate touchbuddy, and virtual panel software.

 

please keep us informed of your progress, very impressive.

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Hello! Congrats to your famous project :thumbup:!!!!!!!!!!!

 

I am highly interested how you would realize the background light...

 

Could you spend some words please :)

 

 

 

 

greetings, sun

 

 

 

p.s. I just want to propose you this beauty http://www.simkits.com/product.php?prodid=605

 

but I now I think, that

 

http://www.ultimarc.com/a-pac1.html

 

is much more better solution....

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Great, thanks for posting. Lets hope that there will be some plans available for the Kamov pit from BlackShark too..

 

Btw. I don't understand why you are not using some advanced key emulator platform, perhaps something like IOCP/SIOC and keycards from opencockpits.com

 

There are a few reasons for that.

First, most people in our team use a Suncom HOTAS, which needs a keyboard to be connected to it via a PS/2 connector.

 

On this image you can see how it is connected at the moment:

 

hotas-kbd-controller.jpg

 

Of course this is just for testing purposes, the final kit will be neatly built into a small container behind Wasserfall's instrument panel :)

 

Second, I don't have enough money at the moment to go shopping for those parts, so I use whatever I have lying around here.

Being a developer and computer enthousiast, there is plenty to mess around with :)

 

I have been pointed to another interesting option though, which I am looking into now: an AVR or PIC microprocessor.

These things can be programmed to emulate a PS/2 keyboard, and do all kinds of stuff.

But here again the price is a problem, a complete kit costs between 100 and 200 Euros.

 

So there may be some very interesting things out there, but for me to be affordable, they have to cost less than 30 Euros (the estimated cost of the interface I'm working on now)

 

O yeah, and last but not least... It gives much more satisfaction when you get something to work that you have actually built yourself :)

 

Hello! Congrats to your famous project :thumbup:!!!!!!!!!!!

 

I am highly interested how you would realize the background light...

 

Could you spend some words please :)

 

greetings, sun

 

p.s. I just want to propose you this beauty http://www.simkits.com/product.php?prodid=605

 

but I now I think, that

 

http://www.ultimarc.com/a-pac1.html

 

is much more better solution....

 

 

I am aware of those kits, as a matter of fact I got a great (though maybe a bit mad) idea when I saw the possibilities of the A-Pac :)

I won't go into details about that yet, I'll let you guess what I was thinking about when I read that it supports 4 analog axis and 24 buttons ;)

 

best looking pit project i have ever seen, and i have seen a few :)

top effort to joe and team.:thumbup:

 

amazing detail on the gauges,

is the idea to eventually have them working, or remain static?

 

would be neat to incorperate touchbuddy, and virtual panel software.

 

please keep us informed of your progress, very impressive.

 

When I'm done with the instruments, we won't be needing touchbuddy or virtual panels anymore :)

I'm planning on building real mechanical analog gauges.

I have already gathered some info about them, and I have made a 'proof of concept' flight-data export application, but at the moment I'm concentrating on the input part of our interface, to get the switches to work.

Dutch Flanker Display Team | LLTM 2010 Tiger Spirit Award
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Thanks for getting back with details surrounding methods that you used to achieve the results of a very nice looking pit....

 

Do you have a shop bot or did you send out the parts to be laser cut..

 

All in all the pit looks very professionally done, and I know that you will have an outstanding pit when completed..

 

I really wish I could build one myself, but living in my area of the world were kind of limited in space... :smilewink:

 

I don't know if you've seen this one yet? Genes been working on his for several years, it might give you some additional ideas...

 

 

http://www.f15sim.com/

 

~S~

 

 

Blaze

intel Cor i7-6700K

ASUS ROG MAX VIII Extreme

G.Skill TridentZ Series 32 GB

Samsung 850 Pro 1TB SATA II

ASUS GTX 1080/DIRECTX 12

Windows 10 PRO

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Thanks for getting back with details surrounding methods that you used to achieve the results of a very nice looking pit....

 

Do you have a shop bot or did you send out the parts to be laser cut..

 

All in all the pit looks very professionally done, and I know that you will have an outstanding pit when completed..

 

I really wish I could build one myself, but living in my area of the world were kind of limited in space... :smilewink:

 

I don't know if you've seen this one yet? Genes been working on his for several years, it might give you some additional ideas...]

 

 

I wish we had a laser!! or router, but we had to send out the parts, it is sofar

the most costly part of our cockpit.

But we can replicate some parts e.a. the roundels, and the panels could be made with a cnc router, but it's to early at this stage to have something as

a "mass production" :)

Intel Core i5-9600K, Gigabyte Z390 AORUS PRO, 16GB Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro, Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2080 WINDFORCE 8G

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