Update on replica Spitfire controls for sims

Topsy’s replica Spitfire controls update…

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In the past few weeks I have been looking at the electrical component aspect so as to determine how to set up the controls. Because I now have several pre-orders, I have decided to look for a more durable solution for components than simply cannibalising old joysticks or gamepads and have decided to use an Arduino Leonardi circuit board which will allow me to configure up to 8 potentiometers and around 24 switch buttons.

The current set up plan is as follows :

Function Component
Pitch control column Potentiometer
Roll control column Potentiometer
Rudder (existing pedal set) n/a
Pitch trim wheel Potentiometer
Rudder trim wheel Potentiometer
Throttle lever Potentiometer
WEP Button activated by lever in gate
Propeller Pitch lever Potentiometer
Mixture lever Button activated by lever in gate
Spade grip « fire 1 » Button (programmable by user)
Spade grip « fire 2 » Button (programmable by user)
Spade grip « camera » Button (programmable by user)
Spade grip brake lever Potentiometer (even if this function is on pedal set)
Radio remote control « off » Button (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « A » Button (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « B » Button (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « C » Button (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « D » Button (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « top 2-way » On/off switch (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « bottom 2-way » On/off switch (programmable by user)
Radio remote control « 3 way » 3 way switch (programmable by user)
Throttle grip « comms » Button (programmable by user)

This gives a total of 7 pre-assigned potentiometers and 11 buttons of which 9 are user programmable plus 3 switches which are also user programmable.

The Arduino Leonardi circuit can also include a POV and there is the option to place this on the spade grip in place of the single « camera » button. The POV would also be programmable for those who have TrackIR or VR headsets.

In the list above you will note the Radio Remote Controller unit which will be used to house the  electronic circuitry as well as those extra buttons and switches that we all need. It will be close at hand just above the throttle quadrant.

3D design of the unit exterior is now completed as you will see from the enclosed image:

23B355376A6E45D5B41D58AD3ACD0F0F

Next step in the design process is to create the inside of the box to fit the buttons, switches and electronics. This should be quite straightforward. Once completed I will start on the elevator and rudder trim wheels assembled on a small section of cockpit sidewall that will fit on a bracket together with the throttle quadrant and the radio remote control unit. The bracket will be designed to be attached to a desk or worktop.

So still a few more things to design before we get to the 3D printing and assembly of the prototype. If there are no major hitches I expect to build and test the prototype in early May.

If any of are interested in acquiring these replica Spitfire MkIX simulator flying controls, it would be helpful if you could let me know so that I can ensure that I obtain and make up the necessary  materials : contact@spitfirehistories.com.

Author: EAF79_Topsy

Topsy is new to multiplayer on-line flight simulation and only earned his "wings" in mid 2016. Like many new pilots he still gets shot down too easily, but is slowly getting better. He is a budding aviation artist and creates digital art prints of Spitfires which are accompanied by own researched and recorded videos.

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