VR Simpit Build

Discussion about VR

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k6chris
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2017 10:34 am

VR Simpit Build

Post by k6chris » Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:24 am

Just thought I would share a few pictures of a VR Simpit we have built for our gliding club. Very much a first attempt and built from 'bits upwards' rather than 'CAD downwards'... The aim was to create a Simpit where the control imovements matched the travel / feel of a real glider and the positioning mapped as closely as possible to the virtual cockpit. To keep costs down we used a rudder pedal unit and joystick from eBay and used the 'spare' throttle / steering potentiometers and switches to drive the airbrakes / switches on the Simpit. We have not implemented flaps / trim / wheel retract yet as we are need to see what benefit such features would have for training purposes (and we want to keep it simple to start with).

The entire build, including PC, Oculus Rift headset, Condor licence and assorted bit and pieces came to just less than £1,000. For those interested the PC is running a 3Gb GTX 1060 graphics card which very comfortable drives 90FPS on the highest settings. For a dedicated Condor 2 VR build you don't need an overspecced VR PC. The office chair, monitor, wood, paint and screws were all begged, stolen or borrowed!

Happy to answer any questions.

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Gunth3r
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2019 10:17 pm
Location: North of the 49th

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by Gunth3r » Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:12 pm

Looks like a very nice, functional VR setup! Wondering what the device is between the center view button and the armrest?

Looks like you really nailed the angles between seat and pedals! When you slip into VR you are going to be IN the sailplane.

Congrats!
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janjansen
Posts: 1068
Joined: Wed Feb 24, 2016 9:26 pm

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by janjansen » Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:57 am

That looks brilliant!
Id be interested in learning a bit more how you modded the pedals and your mechanism for adjusting them (I use the same pedals in my simpit)
I love the elastic band stick centering :)
Is that stick any good?

I do think you will need to add some more controls at some point, particularly for flaps, gear, etc. A simple and fairly cheap way to do that is using one of these:
http://www.leobodnar.com/shop/index.php ... cts_id=204

Should allow you to add as many levers and buttons as you would ever need. You can buy nice big buttons on banggood and the like.

k6chris
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2017 10:34 am

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by k6chris » Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:41 am

janjansen wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:57 am
That looks brilliant!
Id be interested in learning a bit more how you modded the pedals and your mechanism for adjusting them (I use the same pedals in my simpit)

It turned out to be a very simple mod! Unscrew the screws in the rudder pedal faces and all will be revealed. You strip out the toe / heel pots and plastic gearing and then runa simple copper pipe up from the resuting gap. We were originally going to make 2 x metal "T" shapes for the pedals, but the pedals we had taken off fitted nicely. The whole pedal unti now slides between two runners and has a row of holes at about 3cm intervals where 2 x pegs slot into to stop the unit pushing back. Seems to work OK.

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k6chris
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2017 10:34 am

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by k6chris » Fri Mar 08, 2019 11:29 am

Gunth3r wrote:
Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:12 pm
Looks like a very nice, functional VR setup! Wondering what the device is between the center view button and the armrest?

The black device is a track pad (mouse) so the user can drive the PC and the rather odd mouse requirement for exiting a VR flight. Hopefully we will get an update to get 'exit' and even 'refly' functionality from a single button press, like we have for 'start'. Pretty Please Devs......

Gunth3r
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2019 10:17 pm
Location: North of the 49th

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by Gunth3r » Fri Mar 08, 2019 5:24 pm

k6chris wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 11:29 am
Gunth3r wrote:
Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:12 pm
Looks like a very nice, functional VR setup! Wondering what the device is between the center view button and the armrest?

The black device is a track pad (mouse) so the user can drive the PC and the rather odd mouse requirement for exiting a VR flight. Hopefully we will get an update to get 'exit' and even 'refly' functionality from a single button press, like we have for 'start'. Pretty Please Devs......
:oops: Of course. I was thinking it was some sort of exotic pda device...

Cheers
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gromm
Posts: 21
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2018 8:20 pm

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by gromm » Wed Mar 27, 2019 6:07 pm

This is a pretty trivial suggestion, but do you already use a USB hub to connect all this hardware ultimately to your computer? It would cut down on the number of cables that need to go into the computer for sure.

If it works at least. I've had issues just connecting a mouse and keyboard through some of those.
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Al_B
Posts: 43
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2019 4:23 am

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by Al_B » Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:42 pm

Here are some pics of a simple, cheap release mechanism I put together. Cost me nothing as I scrounged all the bits. Simple, sturdy, cheap. Works great. Adds realism. (kids are now missing an unused usb gamepad and golf ball).

The bits used were:

Gamepad usb controller
Scrap piece of 1/2" pine board
Scrap hardwood (pivoting button pusher). You could use a dowel... Bolt in the middle allowing piece to pivot.
1 Spring
Cord
Clear tubing
Kids golf ball
Some assorted bolts, screws, eye hook, zip tie and staples
Felt pad (cushions gamepad button)

You pull the release, which works against the spring, pivoting the hardwood, which pushes one of the top buttons on the controller. This button is assigned to "release" in Condor. There is a screw act as a stopper if you pull too hard. The controller is fixed with screws and zip tie to the pine board. The pine board is screwed to the bottom of desk.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Gravity never loses. The best you can hope for is a draw.

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benkog
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu May 12, 2016 12:02 pm
Location: LHSY
Contact:

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by benkog » Mon May 06, 2019 8:40 pm

Hello Chris!

Please, give any info about airbrakes, how did You solve it? It's looks very interesting.

BenkoG
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k6chris
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2017 10:34 am

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by k6chris » Tue May 07, 2019 8:53 am

Hi there - the airbrake handle is pivoted at the base with a rotary pot & extention spindle place parallel to it. There is then a horizontal linkage mirrors the airbrake handle movement with the rotary pot.

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The pot was one of the ones take from the 'heel brake' in the original rudder pedal unit, so it only requires about 1/2 turn to make a full movement.

Hope this helps

melcrose
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2011 11:56 pm

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by melcrose » Tue May 28, 2019 9:22 pm

I've built a simpit as well - I used a "zero gravity" lawn chair. Very comfortable. I have rudder pedals on a plastic tub that are connected via ripties to the end of the chair - very sturdy. For a joystick, a MS FFB2 between my legs. I have a throttle only slider for the flaps, the throttle for a hotas as dive breaks beside that, and on the other side a throttle for a hotas as gear. Release is handled via a string on a ball that leads down to one of the joysticks on the hotas. .. as simple pull and it works every time. (joyToKey handles the axis to kb input for gear and things)
Bonus! Using "buttkicker" pads cheaply bought on amazon and controlled via a cheap sub amp. One on the joystick, one on the rudder pedals, one on the dive breaks / flaps, one on my back and one under my seat. Sound is "mirrored" via steam VR and customized using "peace" (free software) so I can tweak every tiny response of how the buttkickers behave. (landing / takeoff is a blast!) and during flight just the slightest buzz.. but drop the dive breaks or gear (or both) and you know it.

All for VR via and windows mixed reality setup using a samsung odyssey. It's.. incredible. :)

philster57
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Feb 27, 2019 3:43 pm
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Re: VR Simpit Build

Post by philster57 » Thu Dec 12, 2019 4:32 pm

This is fantastic! Seeing how things can be built simply and cheaply with a bit of ingenuity and know how is very helpful.

Chris, What is the purpose of the white elastic straps at the bottom of the joystick. It appears that it is to help re-center it. I can see how it re-centers after roll but not pitch.

Al_B, I see that your pedals are more vertical than out of the box. Can you provide more info and ideally photos as well?

melcrose, Can you provide a couple of photos?

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