13 April 2013


Past few months, work has been a little more hectic than usual.  What little free time (if any) was available, was spent with flying FSX. The pit build therefore has suffered since then. 

Starting mid-May, my work takes me to a different city. Shifting my house, and getting setup at new place, will now take priority over everything else. Till end-June, I don't see this project progressing any further.

In the meanwhile, I'm more than ever convinced that, while FSUINO and Arduino are good, but they won't work for me. In the meanwhile, I have done a bit of testing with 'Phidgets' and this looks like (for me) a better implementation of output scripts. These boards interface with FSX easily using FS2Phidget script by Alan. The script can be downloaded from mycockpit.org

Just ordered myself a Phidget LED-64 Advanced board and Phidget Interface Kit (0/16/16).

Phidget LED-64 Advanced

Phidget Interface Kit 0/16/16
While the LED board is a necessity, the interface kit is a bit of an overkill. For one, it provides with ability to add another 16 inputs, but the reason for my choice was its 16 digital outputs. Each output is rated for 200 milli-ohms and 2 Amps of current per channel and 30VDC voltage. While I can drive 64 LEDs with the LED board, each output channel on that board is only rated for a max of 10mA current.

Some indicators in the pit (like Master Caution, Fire Warning Lights, for example) are very big and bright annunciators. With the LED board, I didn't have enough current carrying capacity available to drive more powerful lights. With this interface kit, I will be able to overcome that limitation. Due to better current/voltage handling capacity of this board, eventually, if I ever decide to do that, I could also use these channels to drive servo's (a.k.a custom cockpit instruments like battery gauge, hydraulic pressure gauge e.t.c, or rudimentary motion control).

With this purchase, I have now collected about everything I will need for the build, with the exception of various cockpit knobs. Those will be a tough cookie to source. But, we will cross that bridge when we reach it. 

In case I get stuck, my teen daughter is doing a research of her own. She has been collecting anything that remotely looks like a knob (fan regulator switches, broken rotary knobs from old electrical appliances, knobs sealing plastic bottles, including toothpaste tubes, shaving cream tubes and the like). She is confident, with a little molding using dried paper paste, plastic glue and color, she will be able to mold shapes that will look like knobs for me. Gotta love daughters.  

1 comment:

  1. Good catch on the Phidgets. Was zeroing in on them for indicators. Glad to see your comments.

    Maybe a female pilot in the future?