The classic CH Yoke
(This post is from my older, pre-2009 unfinished sim project. For an article about the yoke build for my new project, which supercedes this one in all respects, go here.)
Depending on exactly what kind of sim you’re going for, you’re going to need one or another sort of main control stick or yoke. If you’re doing a fighter aircraft or a dedicated airbus sim, you’ll be using a centre- or side-stick. The latter of these can be replicated easily enough with any number of after-market joysticks designed for sim nuts, and depending on how far you’re willing to go it’s not that hard to convert one of these to look like the real thing. If you’re going for a light aircraft or non-Airbus airliners, you’ll be using a control yoke. Again, depending on exactly your requirements, these can be easier or harder to do – replicating a bolted-to-the-floor Boeing-style yoke system is a large ask compared to the simpler systems you’ll find on light aircraft.
One of the yokes most frequently used by sim buffs is from CH Products. The classic version gives you a yoke with a nice feel, good motion in two axes, and three levers on the top to use for throttle / prop / feather operations. The yoke is designed to clip to a desktop firmly and is used by many sim fans who will never go to the lengths of building a cockpit environment, but who nonetheless want a bit more realism than a keyboard-and-joystick combo will supply. Read More