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Flight Simulator from Scrap

A flight simulator for gliders build from electronic waste and spare parts.

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Build from mostly scrap parts and garbage, this is the cheapest flight simulator you can find. Excluding the cost of the software, I've only spent a few dollars for a dev board to connect to USB so far. If you're willing to spend a little more time searching for parts and building, you can build a simulator that would normally cost a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.

I will be updating this project soon with the work I've done so far.

If you want to fly, gliders are the cheapest way to get in the air. The average cost to solo is around $2000, which is quite inexpensive compared to the cost of flying powered aircraft. Access to a simulator can help to bring these costs down as less time is spent learning basic control of the aircraft and can help to improve flight safety by allowing training for emergency situations in a zero-risk environment.

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  • Rudder Pedals v1 (Bluetooth Version)

    Nathan Pennie07/26/2022 at 18:18 0 comments

    Note: The USB-based version of this is quite a bit simpler, more reliable, and cheaper. I will be posting that soon.

    For my rudder pedals, I started with PlayStation InterAct v3 pedals:


    These pedals come with a wheel and are used for gas/brake in some kind of driving simulator. You can find them on eBay for ~$20 (pedals only) including shipping if you are unable to find any pedals at your local dump. The pedals are quite simple internally: They consist of two potentiometers connected to the pedal surface and there are no active components. This means that the ones on eBay listed as "untested" likely either work or are trivial to fix.

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    Since this is built from whatever scrap I had lying around or could find at the dump, it's difficult to give reproducible instructions. If you want to build your simulator out of whatever parts are available, you will likely have to improvise a bit more. This project is also made up of different parts that can be completed separately. For example, maybe you want rudder pedals but nothing else. Because of the nature of this project, I decided to put construction information in the project log.

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