Powering 23.11.2002  

Powering the simulator

Without powering the simulator would only be an expensive wooden box and metal. Only after establishing communication between the simulation and the switches, handles, sticks, the simulator awakes into life. Unfortunately this powering is the most difficult part when building a simulator. The different powering-areas are the following:
  1. Connection of stick, throttle and rudder pedals
  2. Electronics to power the switches, using the flight simulator's data
  3. Electronics to power the lights and displays using the flight sim data
  4. Wires and cables between the electronic components and the switches, lights and displays

Items 2 and 3 were the most difficult. I tried (as probably other sim-builders) using old keyboards, and home- made circuits. This worked quite well up to 10 to 20 switches. After that it started to become expensive and difficult. Fortunately there is an EPIC card, which allows to solve all these problems on an easy way. The EPIC might seem expensive at the beginning, (aprox. 400,- EURO) and is not easy to understand initially. To make your desition easier, I'll talk about EPIC and it advantages and disadvantages in a special chapter in this HP.

To make things of item 3 even easier, I offer my F4-Reader for download. This F4-Reader establishes connection between Falcon 4.0 (and SP3) and the EPIC, allowing to transmit data, altitude for example, to the Gauge-Module of the EPIC and show them on electric powered instruments. Also Status and Warning-Lights can be displayed and further more data. Getting curious? If so, just click on the link beneath.

For sure some of you will complain about the cost of a sim with epic and corresponding switches, etc. As an alternative I'll give you also information about other ways to power your sim.

The Rudder-Pedals
The EPIC card and his modules
F4-Reader, the interface between Falcon and EPIC
Alternatives to powering the simulator


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