Easy tactile controls and displays for your flight simulator

If you’ve been thinking of adding some tactile controls and readouts for your flight simulators this guide should give you the motivation to get started with the project. [Paul] explains how to build controls and connect them to the simulator data. He makes it look easy, and thanks the interface examples in his code it actually is.

Here he’s built the hardware using a Teensy controller board. The controller communicates via USB and the software is cross-platform. He’s controlling the heading information of the X-Plane simulator using the rotary encoder for fine adjustments and the buttons for increments of 100. But he doesn’t stop there. He’s working on an auto-throttle design that uses a servo motor to move the throttle lever. A potentiometer can be used to vary the throttle, with the servo mapped to the position of that knob. But it works both ways, dragging the virtual throttle on-screen will do the same.

This is one way to make flight simulators more interesting without devoting a whole room of your house to the cause. Don’t miss [Paul's] fantastic demo video after the break.

[Thanks Deadly Dad]


  1. Coligny says:

    Also, stop the Undu publicity for mycockpit website, the original thread is from the XPlane forums…

  2. Mr Name Required says:

    I reckon this idea could be used to build a real phyisical console for the Minimogue VA Moog-style synthesiser so it works just like the vintage instrument. I believe the sound generation component can be controlled via a DLL, so this arduino unit could drive that, and add a MIDI keyboard. Well that’s been a dream of mine, anyway :)

  3. mess_maker says:

    I like this project… please keep up posts like this. In fact, this is why I got into microcontrollers, specifically for a home cockpit, hardware interfacing and data output indication.

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