suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

Help and techniques for creating Air Manager Instrument Graphics

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Roxus
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2020 7:30 pm

suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#1 Post by Roxus » Mon Jun 07, 2021 2:12 pm

Hi all, does anyone have any suggestions for creating a UH-60A Engine Control Quadrant in pure AM (I'm not building physical instruments, only using touchscreens)

My first thought will be using sliders, and might have to try my hand and some sort of shadow/lighting on the knobs, coz otherwise just circles and rectangles seems very "simplistic"

Appreciate any input
A Saitek mod I would use if I would doing 3D. I might even have to do this and just place it at the bottom of my overhead touchscreen
A Saitek mod I would use if I would doing 3D. I might even have to do this and just place it at the bottom of my overhead touchscreen
Actual photo from inside an UH60
Actual photo from inside an UH60
quadrant.png (67.54 KiB) Viewed 674 times
quadrant.pdf
The excerpt from the UH60 Operators Manual
(22.03 KiB) Downloaded 23 times
Upper Console from the XP11 Aircraft manual (BFGD UH60 2.5)
Upper Console from the XP11 Aircraft manual (BFGD UH60 2.5)
My panel so far, backgrounds all ready for adding switches and knobs, and the quadrant in the lower section. How ugly is that Rotor Brake slider in the lower right !?!?! <shudder/>
My panel so far, backgrounds all ready for adding switches and knobs, and the quadrant in the lower section. How ugly is that Rotor Brake slider in the lower right !?!?! <shudder/>

JackZ
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#2 Post by JackZ » Mon Jun 07, 2021 2:55 pm

You can always use canvas functions to add shadows and effects to achieve some 3D effects out of 2D images, but it's gonna be tricky.
For still objects I would suggest you use images done in an imaging software such as Photoshop or Skinman, the later being vector based, so easier to fine tune.
The image can then be used in a slider.

Skinman is free and some very neat effects can be achieved quite easily.
image.png
Jacques
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

JackZ
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#3 Post by JackZ » Mon Jun 07, 2021 5:11 pm

image.png
You got the idea.
image.png
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

Roxus
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2020 7:30 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#4 Post by Roxus » Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:30 pm

Thanks guys, thats exactly what I'm loking for (though I will struggle to make them graphically as nice as these I think, art is not my forte)

JackZ, was that SkinMan as well ?

JackZ
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#5 Post by JackZ » Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:45 pm

Yep, roughly one hour of work. You'll have to create the background and the Dial thumb itself separately. My advice is to use nil for the background, as it is easier to adjust the slat of the lever as an image behind the lever.
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

JackZ
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#6 Post by JackZ » Mon Jun 07, 2021 9:29 pm

My suggestion is also to play with the slider position in your code to emulate the different lever notches.
As the lever slider position is varying between 0 and 1.0, one has to include some test to make the image of the lever jump to the three positions allowed as follow:

Code: Select all

-- Background and text
img_add("slider.png",-10, -12, 200,342)
txt_add("OFF", "font: arimo_bold.ttf; size:20; color: white; halign:left;", 140, 30, 100, 200)
txt_add("DIR", "font: arimo_bold.ttf; size:20; color: white; halign:left;", 140, 128, 100, 200)
txt_add("XFD", "font: arimo_bold.ttf; size:20; color: white; halign:left;", 140, 225, 100, 200)
-- Digital value of the slider position for debugging purposes
value=txt_add("0.00", "font:digital-7-mono.ttf; size:30; color: white; halign:left;", 100, 280, 100, 200)

-- Called when user drags slider to certain position
function callback(position)
   txt_set(value,string.format("%0.02f",position))
   if position>=0.75 then  -- Set the slider position to the very end
       slider_set_position(slider_id, 1)
   elseif position >=0.25 then -- between 0.75 and 0.25 we consider that the center notch is reached
       slider_set_position(slider_id, 0.5)
    elseif position>=0 then -- below 0.25 we consider that the first notch is reached
       slider_set_position(slider_id, 0)
    end
end

-- Create a new slider
slider_id = slider_add_ver(nil, 0, 0, 200,320, "thumb.png", 137, 143, callback)
image.png
The same technique can be used for a Flaps lever for example.
But animation wise, if you want to emulate a real lever that rotates around a center axis, that will be a different story.

Jacques
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

Roxus
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2020 7:30 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#7 Post by Roxus » Tue Jun 08, 2021 5:12 pm

Yep, I did similar thing with my Rotor Brake, only doing something with dataref when it was within a certain range.

One thing I'm trying to think about tho, since I've never been a IRL pilot, do these controls FORCE you (in some way) to do the motion in 2 distinct steps, and if so, how might you do that in AM.
Prolly some sort of "time of last activity > 2000ms" to force a paused as you clunk these instruments from one notch to the next.

Might be overthinking way too much, and prolly wandering OT for "Instrument Graphics Help"

JackZ
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#8 Post by JackZ » Tue Jun 08, 2021 6:27 pm

In fact this is not needed in that case, as here you’ll physically move the mouse quite a bit until the lever jumps to the next notch.

If you intend to use a touchscreen the feedback loop might be different, though.

Jacques
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

Roxus
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2020 7:30 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#9 Post by Roxus » Tue Jun 08, 2021 6:59 pm

Yes, doing touchscreen, and I do expect to use the code to make it "jump" to the middle notch. I was more thinking about how I stop myself from just keeping on sliding passed the notch, and having to do it in 2 phases, like I imagine RL is with these controls. But IDK

JackZ
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: suggestions for engine control quadrant in pure AM

#10 Post by JackZ » Tue Jun 08, 2021 10:43 pm

Maybe by using the pressed and released properties of the dial.
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

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