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Gunner controllers


japetus
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  • 10 months later...

Still came across this thread, since I also wanted to build a gunner control handle.  As I looked at the photos of them, I remembered the old CH Products Virtual Pilot Pro. Ok it is far away from an exact replica, but with some modding (additional buttons, rework some of the shapes) and a conversion to USB it could be a nice gunner handle.

 

I also own a 3D Printer (Creality Ender 3 Pro - cheap but really good), so some new Parts could be also made. I think this is a nice part to start with. I will search for a used one at ebay. There is no need that the yoke is working, only the body and the mechanics must be intact, the rest will be replaced with new electronics. I also did this with all of my HOTAS replicas for my homepit.

 

 

CH Virtual Pilot Pro.jpg

Edited by Viper1970
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36 minutes ago, Galileo said:

There is some control handles on ebay.

You just have to figure the connections.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/TANK-LEOPARD-FIRING-GUN-COTROLLER-GUNNERS-STICK-HANDLE-CONTROL-HYDRAULIC-REXROTH-/172976831998

 

Note the word "Hydraulic" in the description!

 

You need to convert a device based on a hydraulic mechanism into one that uses electrical impulses.

 

Edited by Gibsonm
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2 hours ago, Galileo said:

There is some control handles on ebay.

You just have to figure the connections.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/TANK-LEOPARD-FIRING-GUN-COTROLLER-GUNNERS-STICK-HANDLE-CONTROL-HYDRAULIC-REXROTH-/172976831998

 

Yes, these are hydraulic controls and are actually from a Marder, not a Leopard. We have a set in our 'Control Handle Museum' 😊 

 

The same ebay seller has a set of control handles from a Leopard 1A5 

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/TANK-LEOPARD-COTROLLER-STICK-HANDLE-CONTROL-HYDRAULIC-BUNDESWEHR-BW-GERMAN-ARMY/173552667258?_trkparms=aid%3D333200%26algo%3DCOMP.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20190129125700%26meid%3D38f8128c774c45f390fcbf5266e578a8%26pid%3D100752%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D12%26sd%3D172976831998%26itm%3D173552667258&_trksid=p2047675.c100752.m1982

 

These are much easier to convert to a USB device for Steel Beasts as they use standard potentiometers and switches. We've converted a few of these ourselves.

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13 hours ago, hawes said:

 

Yes, these are hydraulic controls and are actually from a Marder, not a Leopard. We have a set in our 'Control Handle Museum' 😊 

 

The same ebay seller has a set of control handles from a Leopard 1A5 

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/TANK-LEOPARD-COTROLLER-STICK-HANDLE-CONTROL-HYDRAULIC-BUNDESWEHR-BW-GERMAN-ARMY/173552667258?_trkparms=aid%3D333200%26algo%3DCOMP.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20190129125700%26meid%3D38f8128c774c45f390fcbf5266e578a8%26pid%3D100752%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D12%26sd%3D172976831998%26itm%3D173552667258&_trksid=p2047675.c100752.m1982

 

These are much easier to convert to a USB device for Steel Beasts as they use standard potentiometers and switches. We've converted a few of these ourselves.

Spot on! When someone tries to sell you a Marder gunners set as a Leopadr1's...it gets hard to trust them 😉

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I wanted to keep things cost-efficient, that's the reason I thought about converting an old flight yoke to a gunner control.

 

I also could do that thing from scratch, but the dimensions of the handle are to big for my 3D printer to make it relatively solid. I have to split it in more seperate parts, which makes the thing more complex and harder to built. The mechanics are also much more durable, if you use a factory built control.

 

So I thought about getting an old yoke which has a likewise shape and only change some things or add some printed parts and buttons to it, to make a "universal" gunner control, no exact replica. I think even a not exact replica of the control would improve the immersion to sit in a real tank much more.

Edited by Viper1970
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  • 1 year later...

I have been thinking of control handles a lot last few years as well. Well... Until the point when I actually accuired some from AFV sim. Love the quality on those. But back to original topic.

 

I used to play Steelbeast a lot with my  old and rugged logitech 3d extreme pro joystick and using SB controls set for control handle.  As it makes in my opinion big difference of how you use some vehicles (Leopards & cv). Difference i did to be able to do this I changed palmswich to be activated by trigger instead.. and firing to be from usual Lase button on side. It was bit awkward at times but worked mostly... (To a point when it didn't) because some vehicles have very specific control handles and trying some functions caused bizarre unexpected effects at the time. This is because of existing keybinds for control handles. 

 

Anyways... I think that key difference in normal gaming joystick and control handle is palmswich. So I think... If you have a 3D printer. Why not to just build a sort of lever  to add to side of existing old.. (sacrifiable) joystick and somehow relocate one of buttons to be connected to that? Wouldn't that be most easy? 

Edited by Lumituisku
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  • 1 year later...

my son got it for 500 bucks for all 3 items ( the control handle the left panel and the central control panel plate). from the tag when i received the package says m2a2. but maybe m3. my son says it came from a decomissioned M2 simulator. i managed to make the handle work using bodnar board. next work will be to wire the left panel.

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  • 4 months later...

Maybe I will do gunner controls for tank-sims also at a later time 😄.

 

The grips aren't so complex to model. I have made a lot of HOTAS/HOCAS as 3D-models the last year for use with DCS. Buying them was not possible for me, and many grips aren't even available, so I made them on my own.

I already made the cyclic and the collective of the AH-64D Apache and many other helicopters and aircraft. After the print there is for sure also a lot of work to do like spray-filler and paint them, but it's possible.

AH-64D.jpg

F-14-F-18.jpg

OH-58D.jpg

HOTAS-Overview.jpg

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Thank's!

 

This is very interesting, but first I have to finish my universal cockpit project first. Although I have already built a second simulation place, my "command unit", which is meant to play tank and naval sims only, there is still so much work to do at the pit.

 

But if needed, there is a place for gunner controls also, somewhere in the future 😄.

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If anyone want's it, here is the best of my first tries at Photo scanning a Danish Leopard 1A5DK Gunner's grip. 

I made a mistake and used a white background for the pictures, thus making it more difficult for Metashape to do it's magic. 

 

It is rough, but can still be used as a base for grip stl files. One is really what is needed as it is mirrored on the other side. 

 

Since it will be a long while before I can rephoto the grip, I have decided to upload the blend file to Sketchfab.

 

1226038471_Leopard1A5DKGunnerGripScan.png.ff86f312eca42db29b95c6496ab799cf.png

 

It can be downloaded here:

https://skfb.ly/o9FNP

 

Happy Simming

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On 4/23/2022 at 10:11 AM, Froggy said:

Darklabor made Leclerc gunner/TC handles with 3D print.

Very effective20220423_101110.thumb.jpg.f49ebcf07b821e93e41e12db8c1fae11.jpg

Wow, that's looking amazing! 😍

I think I will start with it as soon as my whole HOTAS parts are done. I'm a controller-junkie since I started to built my own. 😅

 

It's really amazing what is possible with 3D printers. It opens up whole new possibilities that you could only dream of in the past.

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