When one thinks of getting into a flight simulator, one assumes that it’ll be from the pilot’s point of view. But this alternative flight simulator takes a different tack, by letting you live out your air travel fantasies from the passenger’s point of view.
Those of you looking for a full-motion simulation of the passenger cabin experience will be disappointed, as [Alex Shakespeare] — we assume no relation — has built a minimal airliner cabin for this simulator. That makes sense, though; ideally, an airline pilot aims to provide passengers with as dull a ride as possible. Where a flight is at its most exciting, and what [Alex] captures nicely here, is the final approach to your destination, when the airport and its surrounding environs finally come into view after a long time staring at clouds. This is done by mounting an LCD monitor outside the window of a reasonable facsimile of an airliner cabin, complete with a row of seats. A control panel that originally lived in an airliner cockpit serves to select video of approaches to airports in various exotic destinations, like Las Vegas. The video is played by a Pi Zero, while an ESP32 takes care of controlling the lights, fans, and attendant call buttons in the quite realistic-looking overhead panel. Extra points for the button that plays the Ryanair arrival jingle.
[Alex]’s simulator is impressively complete, if somewhat puzzling in conception. We don’t judge, though, and it looks like it might be fun for visitors, especially when the drinks cart comes by.
Continue reading “Flight Simulator Focuses On The Other Side Of The Cockpit Door”
Airless tires have been “a few years away” from production for decades now. They’re one of the automotive version of vaporware (at least those meant for passenger vehicles), always on the cusp of being produced but somehow never materializing. They have a number of perks over traditional air-filled tires in that they are immune to flats and punctures, and since there aren’t any airless tires available at the local tire shop, [Driven Media] decided to make and test their own.
The tires are surprisingly inexpensive to make. A few pieces of drainage tubing of varying diameters, cut to short lengths, and then bolted together with off-the-shelf hardware is all it takes, although they note that there was a tremendous amount of hardware needed to fasten all the pipe lengths together. With the structure in place they simply cut a tread off of a traditional tire and wrapped it around each of the four assemblies, then bolted them up to their Caterham street-legal race car for testing.
While the ride quality was notoriously (and unsurprisingly) rough and bumpy, the tires perform admirably under the circumstances and survive being driven fairly aggressively on a closed-circuit race course. For such a low price and simple parts list it’s shocking that a major tire manufacturer like Michelin hasn’t figured out how to successfully bring one to a light passenger car yet.
Thanks to [Itay] for the tip!
Continue reading “DIY Airless Tires Work Surprisingly Well”