Arrow Background Options

These are some of the options that have been suggested for the Arrow “Background”.  I need to decide which one I like the most, but also which one is within my artistic capabilities!  There is the option of getting vinyl printed for a photo background, but that would be more costly (unless I try China…)

Stripes on the Arrow

More paint work on the Arrow sim tonight.  Stripes, 3mm and 1.5mm supplied by Nigel (once again)

Next I need to decide what the background is going to be…. There have been a few options suggested:
– Black.
– Green Below, Sky Blue above the fuselage.
– Green up to the ‘horizon’, then sky blue above.
– A static scene, maybe a Wigram ramp view.
– A blurred background, suggesting motion.

I don’t know which one I like most, probably do some Photoshop mock ups to see what they would look like….

More S-3 Goodness….

Ok, so after adding the AI S-3 to the tanker fleet I went hunting for a flyable model for use on the “Drone PC” acting as the S-3 Tanker….  and I found the IRIS Classics S-3, with animated drogue…  I’ll be test flying tonight to see if the animations work in iBNet… if so, I’ll have a really cool tanker setup to use, giving me options for a Drone tanker, using the IRIS model, or an AI tanker using Menno’s model.  Today is a tanking good day!

Expect to hear the callsign “Texaco” a lot more in the sim!


More paint work

Some more details, and a second coat on the Arrow, and some more grey paint on the wall.  It’s amazing the difference a coat of paint makes to the old MDF walls.  Got me all motivated to paint the whole room!

After sitting back, admiring my work  I thought I could paint a propeller on the door, give the Arrow a bit more 3D

After my random thoughts about some stencils on the door… A quick sketch to show Nathan what I meant…..

Maybe with a bright Yellow door knob?  🙂   Maybe even some sort of warning about the real world on the other side of the door….

3D Printed CDU

Quick design and 3D print job for the 737

With a bit of a clean-up and some filling and sanding it’ll do just fine.  The next stage is to design the buttons, then the mounts for switches and the LCD screen.  The plan is to interface it with an X-Keys to output key-presses which Easy FMC will read.

Coloring-in time

Quiet evening in the man cave…   something about idle hands…

First coat on the white, and blocked in the windows.  The grey is lighter than I was going to use, but I had the tin open anyway… It may get some dark added later, depending on how it looks.  I really need to make the access panel cover now!
What I also did, but didn’t take a photo of, was paint the rear bulkhead and centre window frame grey.

Next up, since I had the grey paint out, was to splash some on the man cave door and see how it looked.  Well, that was the plan, but it seems I may have gotten quite carried away!

Doesn’t look much in the photo, but it sure looks better than bare MDF!  I will be investing in some more paint, and continuing all the way along the wall, and onto the printer cabinet.  This has highlighted the fact that the window in the door is pretty ugly.  I’m thinking of some sort of frame, and maybe some sort of slatted blind or something.

Sitting back admiring my handiwork I started thinking that some sort of sarcastic/humorous exit sign was needed by the handle.  Something about “Caution Real World”…
Incidentally, I also fixed the door handle, which has been bothering me for the past 8 years, as the knob was held on by a bent nail…

737 Software confirmed

After much testing, weighing the pros and cons, thoughts of interfacing operability and much wringing of hands I think I have come to a conclusion on the software combination I will use for the 737 Glass cockpit and FMS.  There were 3 or 4 contenders, each with their own strong points, but in the end I decided that the best ‘fit’ for my purposes was to go for Eric Marciano’s Easy FMS, and Paul Scarratt’s 737 Classic panel for the XML gauges and EFIS control logic.  The AFDS I have ended up with a modified version of the default 737-400, and some of my own logic through LUA scripts.

The main driver which lead me to this solution was when I actually defined what I wanted to be able to do in the sim.  My main purpose of the 737 is to allow me to fly air transport flights, focusing on the ‘flying’ part, rather than systems.  This approach also allows me to fly in my retro FS world, without the worry of AIRAC data or navaids being up to date.
There are compromises of course; my chosen solution doesn’t allow me to select SID’s and STAR’s through the FMS, nor does it allow for VNAV.

One important part of the simulation is the use of X-Pause.  When I first heard of it I couldn’t see the point of it….   One of our favorite customers requested it in his sim, and explained his reasons but i just didn’t understand… now I do.  I have enjoyed flying the sim (albeit in it’s current basic state) through takeoff and departure, then leaving it to complete the climb and cruise on it’s own.  Then once it arrives at a pre-defined point it pauses and waits for me to do the arrival and landing.  Basically it lets me do even long-haul flights, but miss all the boring bits in the cruise.  It also lets me do my flights in bite-sized pieces that fit in with my hectic lifestyle!

So… decision is made, plans are afoot, now I need a drink 😉

TA-4 Intercom

I scored a headset mixer/amp from the recent ATR sim tear-down, which I earmarked for the Skyhawk.  Tonight I did a bit of planning on how best to implement it, and what I wanted it to do.   After a quick sketch of what I wanted to achieve I poked around in my box of audio ‘stuff’ and came up with a couple of candidates for MIC mixers.

My plan is to have;
– A Headset for the instructor
– 2 headset connectors in the cockpit, one for the U-174 plug of a headset or helmet and mask, and the other with two 3.5mm jacks for the ‘replica’ helmet I normally use in the sim)
– An ‘Observer’ Headset with option of ‘listen only’

Mixers from my ‘Audio stash’….  Both have history;  The top one is out of Russell’s 767 and Macchi sims, and the lower is one I used when I first played around with audio/video editing back in the 80’s!

As the plan develops I may end up using the 8 channel mixer Andy kindly donated to the cause, which up till now has been running the entertainment system in the man cave….