Very little to report this weekend, I’ve had other stuff to do so I only managed a couple of hours building. Thanks to the Great British non-Summer, it is at least pleasant working conditions in the build room rather than the sauna that July usually is. Read More
The shell is dead. Long live the new shell.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been hard at work building my new shell. I decided to hold off on posting progress here until there was something substantial to report, and because of the slow pace of work, it’s been a while. But I’m now ready to tell all.
Are you sitting comfortably?
Having cleared the decks, so to speak, I wanted to make sure I got the proportions for the new shell correct. To do this, I need to be able to sit in the approximate right place, at the right height, and be able to measure to the various places I can move, as well as the outer dimensions of the shell itself. So, first thing, I decided to fix up one of my recently-acquired Ford Galaxy seats with a base to bring it to the right height. Read More
More MIP fun
Build progress goes very slowly at the moment, as it has been for some time. I’m not finding much time to get any work done. But this weekend I have managed to do a little bit more on the MIP frame; specifically on the glareshield. Short update and photos follow… Read More
At the Easter weekend, with my ear back to something resembling normal and my will to live renewed, I set about building the new base for the sim. This was before my weight concerns reared their ugly head and hence I was building with MDF as originally planned.
A weighty decision
Today I have made a very important, and significant, decision on the project. I am, basically, going to throw out everything I’ve built so far and start again from scratch.
Lest you think I am mad, there is method to my madness. It all stems from the change in focus of the project to add an enclosure. Having planned it out, it became obvious that the existing console I have built is not ideally constructed to fit into the enclosure I am planning. So I got to thinking about replacing it or at least heavily modifying it. This started me off on a course of thinking, but what really got me was when I worked out how much the enclosure (plus equipment plus people) would weigh. Which is to say, a lot.
State of play
My last post brings us more or less up to date with progress on the project. From here on in it’ll be real-time updates, probably a lot shorter and easier to digest, and a lot more building tips rather than grand rants on the state of the world. Read More
As part of my initial build some months back, I put together the shell of the pedestal. This is the bit of any cockpit that sits on the floor between the seats and is usually integrated into the MIP. It’s roughly analagous to the corresponding bit on a car where the gear lever is (on a European-style, rather than US stick-shift style, vehicle). Controls you’ll usually find there include the thottle quadrant, flaps, speedbrake, CDU and radio stack. Other stuff can go there too depending on whether this is a Boeing or an Airbus or Some Other Kind Of Plane. Indeed, the pedestal on a big Boeing or Airbus is a very large thing with many switches and buttons. Just ripe for the sim nut to have all kinds of fun with.
It’s a material world
So, when last I left you, I was threatening to talk about materials and tools. And so I shall.
If you’re truly going to make your cockpit project realistic and professional, you’re going to need to use sheet metal and a variety of cast metal parts. If you have a lathe, forge, milling machine and properly-equipped workshop, then go to it. If you’re like most of us, and have access to some power tools and an overly optimistic assessment of your DIY prowess, your main material is going to be wood. Or more specifically, MDF. Read More