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Suncom SFS and Talon restoration and mods


debolestis
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hey all,

 

I've been working on a Suncom SFS USB conversion using a Teensy 2.0 and some modifications of gerryk's Arduino code.

 

I totally rewired the buttons/pots and added new diodes (8x3 matrix) just for good measure and to be in a more sensible arrangement. (all right side switches are one column, hats are one column, and all left side buttons are a separate column) I replaced the left side pinkie switch as the original was broken on the one I bought. I also added another row line to the pinkie switch, which the original lacked, so it will function as 2 buttons.

 

I finally managed to figure out the necessary modifications to gerryk's code to get all the buttons working, once I finish hooking up the pots (and possibly wire the buttons & switch on the base to a 4th column) I'll upload the Arduino sketch.

 

The 4 screws securing the plastic enclosure and PCB for the left hat switch were corroded so the heads stripped when I tried to unscrew them. So, unable to get the screws out, I ended up just breaking apart the PCB until I could get the 2 switch sections out without damaging the buttons. I managed to do so without damaging the traces that connect the solder pads for the button wires to the button terminals, so I reused those and just wired new diodes directly to the terminals. Once I had the 2 switches back in place, there wasn't enough remaining of the PCB to screw them in place, so I secured them to the handle interior with some hot glue.

 

While the hat switch buttons all read fine, I'm having some trouble getting the spring-loaded metal lever on the left hat to activate the left/right buttons when the button cap is one (the concave one), though I can do so fine by moving the lever itself with a screwdriver. It seems like the lever either doesn't come up high enough or the cap is sunken too far into the enclosure. I confirmed with a multimeter that all 4 hat buttons are reading around the same voltage to rule out a weak/intermittent button connection.

 

Anyone know if there is something like a tiny washer or plastic connector/spacer between the hat cap and the metal lever so that the cap sits a bit higher? My cap also doesn't fit snugly on the lever anymore (though it did while I got it) so I'm wondering if I lost something while I was disassembling it. (taken a look around, haven't seen anything) Trying to figure out some way to jury-rig, but right now all I could think of was some sticky tack inside the button cap shaft but it's not working all that well.

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Anyone know if there is something like a tiny washer or plastic connector/spacer between the hat cap and the metal lever so that the cap sits a bit higher? My cap also doesn't fit snugly on the lever anymore (though it did while I got it) so I'm wondering if I lost something while I was disassembling it. (taken a look around, haven't seen anything) Trying to figure out some way to jury-rig, but right now all I could think of was some sticky tack inside the button cap shaft but it's not working all that well.

 

I don't think you lost anything, That cap is just push on style. There is nothing in it. I also have some problems with same switch. Sometimes it works normally but sometimes I must apply more force to activate it.

 

I didn't have time before but I'll replace it with thumb stick. If you don't want to do that you can change it with this:

 

500-526.jpg

 

It costs 34,60 on Digikey. Or you can buy one CH Flightstick Pro or Combatstick, gameport versions. You can take switches from them. I think it is the same switch. It is cheapest solution, there are many of those 2 types on eBay and you can find them for 1US$.

 

This is one that I have and it is from CH Flightstick Pro.

 

ghJx1IQ.jpg

 

I don't know if you read whole post you also can use gimbals from those sticks.


Edited by debolestis
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While the hat switch buttons all read fine, I'm having some trouble getting the spring-loaded metal lever on the left hat to activate the left/right buttons when the button cap is one (the concave one), though I can do so fine by moving the lever itself with a screwdriver.

 

I find similar problem in a old CH Combatstick HAT, with the use the (plastic) pole wear slight and don't make more the necessary pressure to click the micro-switch for one HAT direction.

 

I solve this gluing with CA a sheet of school notebook paper over the pole, the CA make the paper rigid and add the little diameter needed to restore the click ability. :thumbup:

 

Instead paper you can use a soda can aluminium sheet and later if need sand to proper diameter.

 

Is not difficult, but laborious and tedious do these things in this reduced space. :D

 

The micro switch can't be pressed less or more, need the exact movement to "click".

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I found this:

 

EbtExcD.jpg

 

I plan to make my stick fully compatible with Warthog, Cougar or future hegykc stuff. Top part is unfortunately broken. I'll try to find somebody who can weld it, I know that aluminum is tricky to weld. I just hope that this is aluminum, to me it looks like alloy of zinc, but I am not an expert. Top part fits to FLCS grip. In the end I'll have plastic Cougar grip.

 

 

Bottom part will also need some modification. Gardena screw fits just fine on it.

 

N0T4A4N.jpg


Edited by debolestis
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If this part is from Cougar is done in Zamac metal.

 

A way to fix, find a aluminium, steel or carbon fiber tube (better due low wall thickness) to fit inside this broken part - don't need fit exactly - and use J.B. Weld (Epoxi reinforced with steel) to glue the parts in the tube.

 

The result will be more strong that a new original piece.

 

Maybe this guys that make repair in car alloy wheels can sold this with MIG or TIG weld... or destroy the parts. :D

 

http://rick.sparber.org/zrp.pdf


Edited by Sokol1_br
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I don't think you lost anything, That cap is just push on style. There is nothing in it. I also have some problems with same switch. Sometimes it works normally but sometimes I must apply more force to activate it.

 

I didn't have time before but I'll replace it with thumb stick. If you don't want to do that you can change it with this:

 

500-526.jpg

 

It costs 34,60 on Digikey. Or you can buy one CH Flightstick Pro or Combatstick, gameport versions. You can take switches from them. I think it is the same switch. It is cheapest solution, there are many of those 2 types on eBay and you can find them for 1US$.

 

This is one that I have and it is from CH Flightstick Pro.

 

20151014_094101_zps5fjfc2vg.jpg

 

I don't know if you read whole post you also can use gimbals from those sticks.

 

I find similar problem in a old CH Combatstick HAT, with the use the (plastic) pole wear slight and don't make more the necessary pressure to click the micro-switch for one HAT direction.

 

I solve this gluing with CA a sheet of school notebook paper over the pole, the CA make the paper rigid and add the little diameter needed to restore the click ability. :thumbup:

 

Instead paper you can use a soda can aluminium sheet and later if need sand to proper diameter.

 

Is not difficult, but laborious and tedious do these things in this reduced space. :D

 

The micro switch can't be pressed less or more, need the exact movement to "click".

 

 

I found that the problem was that the hat buttons weren't all the way pushed into the housing. Might not be a problem if you were able to unscrew it from the outside and keep the PCB (unlike me), but it did take a bit of force (and hot glue) to get it seated in there.

 

I also sanded down the side wall of the button cap about half a cm so it isn't bumping up against the plastic wall as much. I like the concave hat though, helps prevent accidental bumping when using the throttle.

 

I got my pots hooked up and everything running, unfortunately one of the slide pots was spiking terribly and I found the cause to be a crack clean through the PCB with the resistor strip. Anyone have a recommendation for decent slide pots that will fit? Not sure if I want to mess with Hall sensors yet.

 

Here's the Teensy/Arduino sketch though:

 

/* USB Suncom SFS Conversion
  for Teensy 2.0
  Original author: 'gerryk' (gerryk.com), modified by forums.eagle.ru member 'goodpoints'
  You must select Joystick from the "Tools > USB Type" menu
  

  Throttle Buttons are muxed into rows and columns
  SEL1, 2, 3 (columns) on Pins 21,20,19
  Rows on pins 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7- all one register
  Buttons read LOW on activation, so initial state is HIGH


  Wiring from Pots according to the number labels near the terminals: 
  1:          +5V
  2: (wiper)  Analog Inputs 9 (pin 12) and 10 (pin 11) 
  3:          GND

*/

// 2-dimensional array of row pin numbers:
const int row[8] = { 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 };

// 2-dimensional array of column pin numbers:
const int col[3] = { 21, 20, 19 };

int buttonstate[24];
int buttonprevstate[24];

void setup() {
 for (int x = 0; x < 24; x++)  {
   buttonstate[x] = 1;
   buttonprevstate[x] = 1;
 }
 for (int x = 0; x < 3; x++) {
   pinMode(col[x], OUTPUT);
 }
 for (int x = 0; x < 8; x++) {
   pinMode(row[x], INPUT_PULLUP);
 }
 Joystick.useManualSend(true);
}


void loop() {
 digitalWrite(col[0], 0);
 digitalWrite(col[1], 1);
 digitalWrite(col[2], 1);
 for (int y = 0; y < 8; y++) {
   if (digitalRead(row[y]) == 0)  {
     buttonstate[y] = 0;
     if (buttonstate[y] != buttonprevstate[y])
       Joystick.button(1 + y, 1);
   } else  {
     buttonstate[y] = 1;
     if (buttonstate[y] != buttonprevstate[y])
       Joystick.button(1 + y, 0);
   }
   buttonprevstate[y] = buttonstate[y];
 }

 digitalWrite(col[0], 1);
 digitalWrite(col[1], 0);
 digitalWrite(col[2], 1);
 for (int y = 0; y < 8; y++) {
   if (digitalRead(row[y]) == 0)  {
     buttonstate[8 + y] = 0;
     if (buttonstate[8 + y] != buttonprevstate[8 + y])
       Joystick.button(9 + y, 1);
   } else  {
     buttonstate[8 + y] = 1;
     if (buttonstate[8 + y] != buttonprevstate[8 + y])
       Joystick.button(9 + y, 0);
   }
   buttonprevstate[8 + y] = buttonstate[8 + y];
 }

 digitalWrite(col[0], 1);
 digitalWrite(col[1], 1);
 digitalWrite(col[2], 0);
 for (int y = 0; y < 5; y++) {       //only 5 rows here (pins 0 thru 4)
   if (digitalRead(row[y]) == 0)  {
     buttonstate[16 + y] = 0;
     if (buttonstate[16 + y] != buttonprevstate[16 + y])
       Joystick.button(17 + y, 1);
   } else  {
     buttonstate[16 + y] = 1;
     if (buttonstate[16 + y] != buttonprevstate[16 + y])
       Joystick.button(17 + y, 0);
   }
   buttonprevstate[16 + y] = buttonstate[16 + y];
 }


 Joystick.sliderLeft(analogRead(9));
 Joystick.sliderLeft(analogRead(10));
 
 Joystick.send_now();
}

 

For reference, I rewired to the following matrix scheme: the four switches on right handle are Column A (col[0]) , the combined eight buttons on the two hat switches are Column B (col[1]), and everything in the left handle is Column C (col[2]) and are on Rows 0 thru 4 . A wire was added to the pinkie switch so it functions as a two way switch (unlike original), so the wiring is the same as the two way switches on the right handle.


Edited by goodpoints
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I got my pots hooked up and everything running, unfortunately one of the slide pots was spiking terribly and I found the cause to be a crack clean through the PCB with the resistor strip. Anyone have a recommendation for decent slide pots that will fit? Not sure if I want to mess with Hall sensors yet.

 

Mmm, I think you have problem, I already look at Digikey slider pot's spec's and never find one that match with the size used in Suncom...

 

Anyway try contact Real Simulator, they send replacement pots for Suncom with this TUSBA adapter, maybe indicate the right way to get that pot's.

 

http://realsimulator.com/html/fusba.html

 

As last resource make one "Doc'Flyer HALL pot" with this broken pot. ;)

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Mmm, I think you have problem, I already look at Digikey slider pot's spec's and never find one that match with the size used in Suncom...

 

Anyway try contact Real Simulator, they send replacement pots for Suncom with this TUSBA adapter, maybe indicate the right way to get that pot's.

 

http://realsimulator.com/html/fusba.html

 

As last resource make one "Doc'Flyer HALL pot" with this broken pot. ;)

 

 

Didn't know they were so rare. Fortunately it seems I should be able to get debolestis' old pots. Though I'm sure it would be possible to figure out some way to mount a different size pot by removed some of the mounting tabs or something.

 

So how are the hall sensors working with the throttle? I think I remember seeing that either or both of you guys did that with yours.

 

For the time being though, it works fine as a non-split throttle. Though the two handles wiggle a bit when they're locked together and I notice that the plastic devider is wiggling as well. Though I think it's mostly that the slot on the left handle is a bit wider than the tab that locks in. Eventually I'd like to replace that plastic divider with a metal one like I saw debolestis did, does that improve the wiggling?

 

It's also a bit annoying that the switches wiggle about as well, anyone figured out a way to stop that short of putting in different switches? But overall I'm very pleased with it. Together with my TM F-16 grip mounted on a Sidewinder FF2 (which by the way sokol, I did end up cutting down the shaft extension by about half from what I posted in that Il-2 thread, much better now) , I got about the closest thing to a TM Warthog for less than $100. :thumbup:

 

I'm also thinking about swapping out the push-pull radio switch (top one on right throttle handle) for the higher versatility of a hat switch like the A-10 has and I'll probably mount a few more switches in the throttle base. I'm also thinking about possibly trying to mount a small track ball and 2 buttons somewhere on the throttle for easily reachable mouse control, though I'm not sure if there's really room anywhere. Anyone tried something like that?


Edited by goodpoints
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I forget that you are talking about Suncom SFS throttle, the pot that I search and dot find are for the joystick. :doh:

 

In the throttle I think that a similar pot - even with different size can be adapted - as the last resource in other position, moved with R/C ball joint linkage, so the throttle levers preserve his original course movement playing with lever angle.

 

Just get a ~10-50k ( linear &B type) slide pot' that you find suitable. Look t Digikey, Mouser for good brands like Alps, Bourns, TT (Bi Tech).

 

I think that have 1 or 2 these pot there, removed from a SFS in what I install DIY HALL sensor (and Bu0836), but unfortunately shipping cost from my "corneroftheworld" is prohibitive. :(

 

You can replace this (ON)-OFF-(ON) (momentarily) switches with better ones, even replacing some with ON-OF-ON if want (and you Arduino code support).

 

To install a trackball you need confirm if the Arduino code support - or will add mouse support in the code.


Edited by Sokol1_br
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  • 2 weeks later...

Some updates:

 

I finished this:

 

QBDAVJb.jpg

 

It works fine.

 

As Sokol1 advised, I bought JB Weld and glued the broken part. I also put a plastic piece inside for support.

 

Immediately after mixing and applying glue:

 

5ZGWn76.jpg

 

There was a lot of excess glue, but I left it like that. After 12 hours it was dry but still a little bit sticky. Then I left it for total of 40 hours to dry.

 

Then I took dremel and sanded excess glue:

 

arw7ohH.jpg

 

3Ddu9lP.jpg

 

 

The bond is very strong. It looks like it never broke. I tried to break it with my hands, but I couldn't do it. It is probably OK now, time will tell.

 

Sokol1 thank you for your advice!!!

 

This part I cleaned and polished a little. I cut the top part and widened the hole to 11mm so that it can fit on CH shaft.

 

ZPokhxf.jpg

 

LWeMxm1.jpg

 

And when I put it on CH:

 

lpWXcl8.jpg

 

Aec4QEF.jpg


Edited by debolestis
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And offtopic, but I was for a week in Berlin and I visited Luftwaffenmuseum on Gatow. And among all crazy things I saw this:

 

1YQ5iVR.jpg

 

rRukJUq.jpg

 

And here is L39 HOTAS:

 

ctsoRvn.jpg

 

azG9zBB.jpg

 

I recomend to everybody to visit this museum.


Edited by debolestis
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Nice "weld". :thumbup:

 

What you use for thumbstick in this TQS?

And, the used "HAT" are from?

 

It is some generic pot thumbstick.

 

Hat is from SFS throttle, my SFS is in pieces now so I used it just for testing.

 

RUvFzkd.jpg


Edited by debolestis
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Hi guys,

 

Thought id show you my latest restoration mods

 

Picked up an f22 tqs & elite rudders for £25 on ebay!

filled the f22s base with lead & mmjoyed it & the pedals!

 

working great!

 

sim.jpg

 

Good work, can you post some gut shots of F22 stick?

Is that model M keyboard in the back? I was thinking of modding on for myself, but it is difficult to find one with Croatian layout.

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Here might be good for any extra keycaps you need :)

 

http://www.clickykeyboards.com/index.cfm/fa/categories.main/parentcat/10191

 

Think there is also a place in Japan that does custom dye sublimation keycaps for the model m

 

 

Thank you, I'll have that in mind.

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I finished this stick at last. For now it is just with FLCS grip.

 

40mMY6I.jpg

 

Gardena screw fit fine, connection is great.

 

qtaUaMZ.jpg

 

I also found original connectors.

 

SMHQM91.jpg

 

 

 

c4x2bUE.jpg

 

 

 

j8YZE9u.jpg

 

 

 

fuaBtaf.jpg

 

I added a small switch, it is just for firmware updates.

 

I made small PCB with connectors and I needed to change from micro USB to USB B connector. I used PC fan connectors, cables are from old fans. They go only in one direction I didn't want to accidentally change polarity a destroy sensors.

 

I forgot to mention that I changed from Combatstick to Flightstick Pro enclosure because it is more symmetrical. Mechanism is identical, I just moved from one stick to another.

 

qZXKXZB.jpg

 

Stick feels great, 14 bit resolution, stick is now extended and it is more precise. I love it.


Edited by debolestis
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One thing that is only a little annoying is diagonal movements, I still feel when I cross the center. One day I removed the springs and tried it without them and that feeling was gone, joystick felt completely natural except there was no more centering. I saw following examples on google search, I'll try diagonal springs like in this X55 and see how it goes.

 

x55springmod_1.jpg

 

Or maybe something with RC dampers like in this great example:

 

2re645d.jpg

 

This my idea for now:

 

QjUQdRH.jpg

 

Any suggestions?


Edited by debolestis
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Looking good!

 

Flightstick pro was a great stick, agree that diagonal was a bit weird, but nowhere near as bad as the f16 flcs or the f22 (even worse! Because the springs are so tight!)

 

Never saw a black flightstick pro base though, mine was light grey, was the USB version black?

 

You should try to get an f22 for the grip, it feels much better than the f16, feels much more solid somehow...

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Looking good!

 

Flightstick pro was a great stick, agree that diagonal was a bit weird, but nowhere near as bad as the f16 flcs or the f22 (even worse! Because the springs are so tight!)

 

Never saw a black flightstick pro base though, mine was light grey, was the USB version black?

 

You should try to get an f22 for the grip, it feels much better than the f16, feels much more solid somehow...

 

Mine Flightstick Pro was gameport.

 

F22 is difficult to find and is usually expensive on eBay.

 

I found this:

 

ptAgHCD.jpg

 

It is Quickshot Skymaster QS-206. I bought it for 1 on eBay, it looks bigger on pictures but it is small. Gimbal is almost identical as in CH sticks, only 1/2 the size. But there was no that feeling in diagonals. Then I started to disassemble it and removed rubber boot and that feeling was back again. I think it is because rubber boot counteracts springs in gimbal. I am going to experiment more on this.


Edited by debolestis
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