Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 53

Thread: Project: Foldable SimPit

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227

    Project: Foldable SimPit

    The guys flying with me know this was an ongoing project that started just under a year ago. The idea behind it was to hard mount TM Hog and its throttle, if possible not on the pilots right side, but center mounted. Like in the real A-10 and like what most WW2 birds and prop planes have.

    Since I am using my desk and gaming PC for many things other than flying (at the time this project started I was working at home for one period), plus I did not want to lose a room to my hobby (possibly even my wife if had I gone with that solution lol), the only other option was to have it foldable so that it can be stored away when I'm done flying.

    The original concept selected for production (CAD drawing):






    I've been playing around with the idea of properly mounting the Hog for as long as I own it (roughly 2 years now), and appetites only grew over time after watching other pilots solutions to the problem. Dust covers and stick extension were one of them.

    After experimenting with different ergonomics and doing a couple of revisions to the pit, this is what I ended up with:







    A couple of add ons had to be done. The most urgent were the handle on the right side and the wheels on the other for easier maneuvering. After carrying it around for a couple times, and realizing the need to add another foldable arm to the right side for the mouse - it became apparent this would be too heavy and possibly loosen the joints to much.

    Stored away position:




    The unfolded or "business" position, with chair (also foldable) in place:






    One of the revisions involved strengthening the base column. Originally I put one L connector at each side. Even though it wasn't going any place, it was flexing too much to my liking. So I added 4 more, 2 on each side.




    The extension has its own story. After asking around a bit, I used my engineering connections and asked a fellow colleague from my student days for a favor. I drew it up, and he machined it at work from scrap metal after work hours. He even did it from stainless steel. Saying I owe him isn't enough.




    The extension was one part of the problem. I didn't want to experiment with cannibalizing the PS/2 Y cable, instead I bought male/female MINI DIN 5 PIN connectors, got myself a 5 wire cable and a soldering iron. With the extension being relatively short (7cm) when compared to what other guys are doing, I had very little room to maneuver. The connectors had to be shortened to fit inside the steel extension. A shot of the bare connecting cable inside the thing:




    And finally, the comparison between my pit and DCS A-10C:



    The relative axial (plane length) distances between the throttle and the stick are similar to what I ended up with when testing which position suits me best. The stick in the DCS is positioned slightly higher than how I have it. Few other pilots recommended that I lower it and this is as low as it goes with this kind of base column design. There really isn't any need to lower it further IMO.
    Last edited by T}{OR; 24-03-2014 at 08:35.
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  2. #2
    Scruffy is offline Sergeant Major More Posts Than Postman Pat
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    591
    I envy you! Excellent work mate, everything looks so neat and tidy! The little details are great too, the tags on the dust covers and the hangers for the cables. I can see that a lot of planing and careful thinking was involved. The only thing missing is a beer holder! I wish you nice flights on it.

    P.S. How much does it aprox. weigh without the stick & throttle?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227
    The beer/whiskey stand is separate. Thank you for nice comments.

    The Hog alone weighs about 6~6.5 kg, and this doubles the weight if not more. I would estimate it weighing roughly as much as the Hog.
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Tharg, just of bleeem nebula
    Posts
    22,043
    links broken for me
    Never trust a man who when left alone in a room with a tea cosey, doesn't put it on his head
    If you are going to buy online why not do it and help B-F keep going at the same time!

    Follow this Link to our Amazon Store

    DONATE TO KEEP B-F SERVERS GOING

  5. #5
    Tx_Tip is offline Captain More Posts Than Postman Pat
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    1,314
    Now that's a hog pen if I've ever seen one...

    Possible brownie points with the Mrs. as it folds up nicely too.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227
    You're not off on the brownie point there Tips.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bone Head View Post
    links broken for me
    This was uploaded onto our FTP, just like the rest of the DBS material. Anyone else having problems with images not showing up?
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Tharg, just of bleeem nebula
    Posts
    22,043
    I can see it now ... strange

    I mean strange why I couldnt see it before not it looks strange. It looks very neat! Lots of attention to detail.
    Last edited by Bone Head; 24-03-2014 at 09:32.
    Never trust a man who when left alone in a room with a tea cosey, doesn't put it on his head
    If you are going to buy online why not do it and help B-F keep going at the same time!

    Follow this Link to our Amazon Store

    DONATE TO KEEP B-F SERVERS GOING

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    55
    Very good looking.

    Every time I fly, I think about doing something like that. Wife would kill me, but even so, I would love to do it.
    My main reason being the use of pedals. I have them but just can't use them with the desk I have.
    Did you forget that detail? You have the perfect situation to expand the kit forward, maybe using a separate foldable part easily connectable by pins, consisting in screen, keyboard, pedals, etc.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227
    Thanks & exactly my thoughts. From the moment I got the Warthog out of the box it was just screaming for something like this. This makes the wife happy as well. And no, I did not forget the detail about the pedals. Just decided to leave that part out.

    Currently the pedals sit below the desk, on a square wooden piece. Before I unfold/deploy the SimPit I just move them out of the position. The pedals push against the wooden piece which then acts as a stand in between the wall behind the desk. With the carpet preventing them from moving sideways, there is no need to fix the pedals.

    For this pit to be truly functional I need to do some kind of a keyboard stand, and to accommodate for the throttle quadrant which works wonders in combination with the Hog throttle. More screens will follow over time...
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    55
    This is promising...

  11. #11
    Skinny's Avatar
    Skinny is offline General More Posts Than Postman Pat
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Belgium
    Posts
    4,124
    Very impressive Thor! Excellent design and finish, really nice job.

    My only minor criticism would be that wooden garden chair, which looks out of place, and I assume isnt exactly the kind of thing you'd want to sit on for 8 hour missions ? At least consider painting it, if its not "dual use"' .

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227
    Thank you!

    The chair is a stand-in. I borrowed it until I can find a suitable one. The main requirement was for it to be foldable, and this one had an "angled" seat which in combination with the pedals puts your feet in more perpendicular position when using them, thus resulting in a higher pedal angle without the need to elevate the pedals (using MFG rudder pedals).

    Chair isn't at all comfortable for prolonged use, even with the blanket that is visible on the screenshots.

    The available chair seat height also played a role when building this. The lowest I found / measured was 45cm. This is the distance from the floor to the lowest position of the L shaped base column (below the joystick).

    It is likely that the one I get will not be foldable. They are just not comfortable.
    Last edited by T}{OR; 25-03-2014 at 10:26.
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  13. #13
    Scruffy is offline Sergeant Major More Posts Than Postman Pat
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    591
    I forgot to ask what software you used for your CAD design.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227
    Solidworks. Out of the 3 I have experience working with, this one has the nicest graphics when you select material type.
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  15. #15
    Scruffy is offline Sergeant Major More Posts Than Postman Pat
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    591
    Thanks!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Al Ain. UAE
    Posts
    140
    I just completed a diploma in engineering and solidworks was the one that college forced us to use to complete all or drawings and Im glad they did, as it is by far the most user friendly and as you said the nicest graphics. Unfortunately for me most industries outside of architecture seem to prefer to use Catia software which I am now having to learn. Still prefer Solidworks.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227
    Congratulations.

    It could have been worse, the switch to lets say PRO Engineer, now known as Creo Elements is more difficult than to CATIA (in my experience). Solidworks started as a derivative of CATIA IIRC.
    Last edited by T}{OR; 25-03-2014 at 14:08.
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    7,227

    Update #1

    Last weekend I finally mounted my monitor onto a wall behind my desk. Very happy how it all turned out. Now I can transform my desktop into a flight sim in just a minute or two. Here is how the final product looks like in action...

    Normal setup vs. flight sim setup:



    Another angle:



    VESA mount extendable arm 40cm:



    - cannot recommend this enough, with the bulky monitor stand out of the way I now have ~50% more space on my desk

    Rudder pedals mounted on a new base, stored vs. deployed:





    Quote Originally Posted by CRO_Luso View Post
    Did you forget that detail? You have the perfect situation to expand the kit forward, maybe using a separate foldable part easily connectable by pins, consisting in screen, keyboard, pedals, etc.
    That part is something I am still planning on doing, in the mean time this is easier to set up than move everything over in front of my TV. Which btw. is being used by the mrs. while I am flying.
    Last edited by T}{OR; 06-06-2015 at 09:27.
    ... my foldable "Hog Pen"

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    55
    That extendable arm was a great idea.

  20. #20
    Scruffy is offline Sergeant Major More Posts Than Postman Pat
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    591
    Looking pretty sweet, you even have a white board and everything!

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •