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Combat Flight Simulation Hardware and VR

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  • Combat Flight Simulation Hardware and VR

    Not as off topic as you might think. With COVID, people staying home, has created a huge demand for joysticks, thrust quadrants, rudder pedals, and even VR headgear. For instance, my Thrustmaster A10 Warthog HOTAS setup which I originally paid around $400 for, I can sell used for $1200. My cheap Logitech $30 joysticks, I could turn around and sell for many times that right now.
    Cottage industries are popping up, newcomers like Virpil make CNC machined joystick bases that accept their own grips which are compatible with Thrust Master. I have an FA18C stick coming that screws into my joystick base. Another person in England sells a 3D printed adapter to use a gamepad thumb stick in place of the original slewing stick on my thrust levers for the targeting pod.
    I think this is a perfect opportunity for myself and others to make some money on the side with your own product idea. Of course it helps to be in the hobby so you have an idea of what is needed. I'm going to design a nice set of rudder pedals since that's what I need. DCS World is a free download, but the addon aircraft which are highly detailed, study
    level simulations of the real thing including weapon systems cost some money, around $60 each.

    Going O/T now, I've been into VR gaming for the past few years and could never explain why it just wasn't catching on. I'm on my 3rd VR headset now and it is portable enough that I brought it to work. One of my coworkers / friends was here at the same hotel in Japan. Flew with him last month and talked about VR, seemed interested, but failed to purchase a VR headset. Well, DCS World supports VR, and let me tell you, when you play a flight sim in VR for the first time it is life changing. All of a sudden you are sitting inside an F/A 18C move your head to look around, line up the HUD, check your 6, lean forward and up to look over the nose a bit more. Full 6 degrees of movement freedom in STEREOSCOPIC 3D. I knew my friend was going to have a Jesus moment when I loaded up DCS world in the F/A 18 over the ocean to practice carrier landings. His mind was blown(and he's a 747 and 777 pilot just like me). I had instantly converted him to VR. We played other games like Beat Saber, Super Hot VR, Pavlov VR, Stand Out, etc. If you like guns and first person shooters, the same mind blowing occurs with Pavlov VR. I think VR is going to start increasing in popularity now. Only problem is that you must experience it personally to understand what it actually offers. I ordered custom prescription lens inserts for my headset that yet again is from a cottage industry. 3D printed mounts with the custom ground lenses. He has a 2 week lead time at least due to demand.

  • #2
    Now if they could only come up with a way for you to feel 9G's

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    • #3
      Originally posted by RB211 View Post
      . . .Full 6 degrees of movement freedom. . .
      Sounds pretty weak. Did you mean 60? The rest of it would be a kick. My son does VR gaming, but I don't think any of it is aviation related (I'm a retired pilot myself).
      Southwest Utah

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      • #4
        [QUOTE=RB211
        Going O/T now, I've been into VR gaming for the past few years
        [/QUOTE]

        I did not picture you as a gamer... Why? Have you spent too much time in the 777 flight sim? I thought tinkering CAD and NC machines that would be enough.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Tungsten dipper View Post

          I did not picture you as a gamer... Why? Have you spent too much time in the 777 flight sim? I thought tinkering CAD and NC machines that would be enough.
          Too many hobbies, most stay on the back burner until the itch comes back. I'm nearing the end of 777 CA upgrade training and can't wait to get back into some of the hobbies. CAD and NC luckily can be combined with every single one.

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          • #6
            Motion seats may be next. I used to support AH-64 Apache flight simulator, it had the 2 real apache cockpits, but they were on opposite sides of the room, running same video.
            you could get vertigo, and get vibes/motion in the seat even tho it was not a full motion simulator, it had motions in the seat itself
            Seat motion + good video gets you about 90% feeling of a full motion sim.
            Pretty cool, if you introduced rotor blade imbalance, you felt it in the seat, if you crashed it-you got a jolt, if you jerk the cyclic you got some jerky G's in the seat
            Quite impressive, and that was tech of circa 2001 and 2005. No doubt todays tech could compact all that into your den.
            oh, and if you parked it on a slope, without parking brake on, it would start rolling downhill until it crashed something.
            you could set up from instructors console, setup good guys/bad guys, enemy forces/tactics, deteriorating weather, run out of fuel, get shot-up, exceedances, all that stuff.
            And as a support tech, we had to of course do a complete 'operational-flight' pre-flight procedure each day.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Ringo View Post
              Motion seats may be next. I used to support AH-64 Apache flight simulator, it had the 2 real apache cockpits, but they were on opposite sides of the room, running same video.
              you could get vertigo, and get vibes/motion in the seat even tho it was not a full motion simulator, it had motions in the seat itself
              Seat motion + good video gets you about 90% feeling of a full motion sim.
              Pretty cool, if you introduced rotor blade imbalance, you felt it in the seat, if you crashed it-you got a jolt, if you jerk the cyclic you got some jerky G's in the seat
              Quite impressive, and that was tech of circa 2001 and 2005. No doubt todays tech could compact all that into your den.
              oh, and if you parked it on a slope, without parking brake on, it would start rolling downhill until it crashed something.
              you could set up from instructors console, setup good guys/bad guys, enemy forces/tactics, deteriorating weather, run out of fuel, get shot-up, exceedances, all that stuff.
              And as a support tech, we had to of course do a complete 'operational-flight' pre-flight procedure each day.
              That's very cool. The attractive thing to VR is that it saves you a ton of money. No need for an accurate cockpit with projected video that fails to be true 360 degree coverage.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by chipmaker4130 View Post

                Sounds pretty weak. Did you mean 60? The rest of it would be a kick. My son does VR gaming, but I don't think any of it is aviation related (I'm a retired pilot myself).
                not degrees of a circle....https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_de...freedom...like when you are constraining a geometry, it can move six ways
                in Toronto Ontario - where are you?

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                • #9
                  Oh! Thanks, Mcgyver
                  Southwest Utah

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by chipmaker4130 View Post

                    Sounds pretty weak. Did you mean 60? The rest of it would be a kick. My son does VR gaming, but I don't think any of it is aviation related (I'm a retired pilot myself).
                    Flight sims and racing sims are incredible in VR. There's even a new Star Wars X-wing sim/game in VR that is supposed to be amazing.

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                    • #11
                      Is it the headsets that you put your phone in or, does it have it's own display ? I have the phone one, and was always disappointed. After
                      riding on the roller coaster and exploring the haunted house that was about it. I haven't tried any games but may try some now.

                      Edit: the disappointment involved what was available software wise. The graphics are great.
                      Last edited by Mike Amick; 11-23-2020, 01:43 AM.
                      John Titor, when are you.

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                      • #12
                        We are building a sim for our museum but we have a way to got yet..

                        https://photos.app.goo.gl/waPVfHaL8nVGgjEq7

                        ...this link is to Google Photos. The aircraft is an ATR72 and the sim is showing a representation of the airstrip at Milford Sound. As you can see the graphics are pretty primitive.

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                        • #13
                          Our daughter Paula is going to driving school now. She is finished her theory and now has moved on to the actual driving part. Her first three lessons were in a driving simulator. She thought it was really cool. She has been driving all around the farm for years on all of the machinery we have so her driving instructor was really impressed with her skills. The driving simulator's seat did not move and it isn't VR. Just three screens in front. Not all that sophisticated but still probably saves the driving instructor a lot of close calls.
                          Location: The Black Forest in Germany

                          How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

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                          • #14
                            I have been playing with the new Microsoft Flight Simulator and it’s pretty amazing. I thought I had a parent powerful gaming PC until that, lol. It’s gives my RTX2080 a workout. The real time weather and traffic is pretty fun. One night I took my little Daher from PDX to SEA along I5. Pretty cool to see car light below and I managed to land without killing myself.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Sparky_NY View Post
                              Now if they could only come up with a way for you to feel 9G's
                              There might be but not for the home gamer.

                              Many years ago the RCAF was experimenting with a flight simulator based on a multi axis industrial robot that had a F-18 seat and controls mounted, instead of the usual actuator and a set of VR googles. the idea was to run it as a flight sim that actually had multi positional all axis movement and real G-forces. Never heard if anything ever develop, it was early days of VR so maybe it the tech wasn't up to it ??????
                              The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

                              Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

                              Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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