Airmanager via pico-projectors

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vangyver
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:30 am

Airmanager via pico-projectors

#1 Post by vangyver »

Two pico-projectors displaying Airmanager gauges, radio stack digits, moving map and vacuum gauge.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/628896667180635
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vangyver
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:30 am

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#2 Post by vangyver »

I would rather do display panels but mounting multiple displays behind the panel would be a real nightmare. There are a lot of support ribs behind the panel. I would end up destroying the original panel cutting up everything to make the panels fit and mounting rotary encoders would be a problem.
At one point in history the automotive manufactures looked into using a miniature projector to display gauges on the unusual shape of the automotive instrument cluster. That’s where I came up with the idea.
I would also rather use Flight Illusion instruments especially if I was running a flight school but would cost me somewhere around $12,000 for the whole panel. That is too much for my wallet. Thanks to Air Manager, it gave me a way to reduce my cost tenfold. Using two pico projectors ($379 ea) to display 95% of the panel was my best option. All I have to do is add the buttons, switches and rotary encoders. It is the most inexpensive solution that would fit my budget.
The projection images are extremely better than the group videos show. I am also able to change the instruments / digit colors, type and size easily with Air Manager. Too me it is as they say “The Cat`s Meow”
As always open to any comments and suggestion.

vangyver
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:30 am

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#3 Post by vangyver »

Testing the first pico-projector.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a6G9MO6W_0U

vangyver
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:30 am

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#4 Post by vangyver »

Both pico-projectors mounted.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SCzplbCrpJU

vangyver
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:30 am

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#5 Post by vangyver »

Updated video of my simulator build.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=At99wSYJIrs

Vangyver

JackZ
Posts: 2181
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#6 Post by JackZ »

vangyver wrote: Thu Jun 16, 2022 8:18 pm Updated video of my simulator build.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=At99wSYJIrs

Vangyver
Very nice work!

A few remarks if I may:
0- You mentioned having trouble with the gauges hardware dials that seem to be hooked on a LEoBodnar card.Mmain problem is that the Leo card does not handle the acceleration feature, while Air Manger can do that. I would suggest to try to wire at least one instrument on an arduino and run it from here with AM. Improvement guaranteed

1- The RPM gauge seem a bit small in diameter and it's location a bit weird when compared to the real location in the Cherokee. The small diameter hole in a panel is usually reserved for ancilliary instruments such as clock or vacuum pressure gauge. And FYI there exist an RPM gauge for the PA28 in the store that looks closer to the originla instead of the Cessna one
cherokee cockpit.jpg
Maybe you did that on purpose? I reckon that the location of the RPM gauge in the real aircraft (ie below the needle fuel/oil/temp gauges) is weird, but the beauty of your pico projetcor solution is that you probably can reach this exact location without being hindered by the yoke?

2-I noticed that you left the instruments bezel that are white/grey and that color appear through the panel holes, which is a bit annoying IMHO.
My advice would be to modify the instruments (either the code or the image itself) to replace the background with a black one.

A few years back I made a post on this forum on how to remove the bezel of an instrument using Skinman, that could help.
If you wish the forum is here to help

Jacques

[EDIT] a quick check on an instrument shows that some have already the capability to remove the background built in, such as the C172 DG that you are using.
Just make sure that the "background" property checkbox is left unchecked
image.png
You could even get rid of the software dials which in your case, are not needed.
That part would imply to modify slightly the Lua code of each gauge, but that's usually very easy:
GENERAL HOW TO
1- Create a clone of the instrument you will be working with, so your modifications will be saved

2- Simply comment out the lines that refer to the software dials

Code: Select all

---------------------------------------------
--   Controls Add                          --
---------------------------------------------
dial_knob = dial_add("gyroknob.png", 30, 406, 85, 85, 5, new_knob_gyro)
dial_click_rotate(dial_knob, 6)
hw_dial_add("Gyro drift dial", 5, new_knob_gyro)

dial_knob_hdg = dial_add("hdgknob.png", 390, 406, 85, 85, 5, new_knob_hdg)
dial_click_rotate(dial_knob_hdg, 6)
hw_dial_add("Autopilot heading dial", 5, new_knob_hdg)
becomes

Code: Select all

---------------------------------------------
--   Controls Add                          --
---------------------------------------------
-- dial_knob = dial_add("gyroknob.png", 30, 406, 85, 85, 5, new_knob_gyro) <----- just add two -- in front of the line, that's it
-- dial_click_rotate(dial_knob, 6)  <----- just add two -- in front of the line, that's it
hw_dial_add("Gyro drift dial", 5, new_knob_gyro)

-- dial_knob_hdg = dial_add("hdgknob.png", 390, 406, 85, 85, 5, new_knob_hdg)  <----- just add two -- in front of the line, that's it
-- dial_click_rotate(dial_knob_hdg, 6)  <----- just add two -- in front of the line, that's it
hw_dial_add("Autopilot heading dial", 5, new_knob_hdg)
3- Check for any additional images that could be added for aesthetic purposes
in our case, you should also comment out the lines 33 and 34 like this

Code: Select all

-- img_add("knobshadow.png", 30, 406, 85, 85)
-- img_add("knobshadow.png", 390, 406, 85, 85)
The end result:
image.png
Last edited by JackZ on Fri Jun 17, 2022 11:04 am, edited 2 times in total.
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

JackZ
Posts: 2181
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#7 Post by JackZ »

By the way, I liked you STEC-30 autopilot gauge, but couldn't find it in the store.
image.png
Where did you get It?
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

vangyver
Posts: 111
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:30 am

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#8 Post by vangyver »

JackZ,
Thank you for the information. Yes I put the RPM gauge there temporarily as the pico-projector display cannot reach the proper location. I will most likely use a USB RPM gauge later. The hole is suppose to have a digital VOR (Davtron DVOR 903) . I was lucky that AIrmanager had the STEC-30 Autopilot as I can do some programming but not very efficient at it yet. Images are no problem for me to modify.
Yes I need to modify the instruments bezels. Just have not had the time yet to do so but I will later. There is much editing I need to do yet to the gauges but it on my “to do list”. Yes I am familiar with the commenting out lua codes. I made all my gauges as clones and will edit them in the near future.
One thing I would like to do is add is a delay in each radio on function. With the A2A Cherokee they have each radio turn on in a sequenced delay when using the master switch. It would be a cool feature to add.
Vangyver

JackZ
Posts: 2181
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#9 Post by JackZ »

okay, thanks

Couldn't find the STEC autopilot anywhere in the store.

Which Am radios did you use in your setup? I could have a look at your timer delay problem when powered, just for the challenge of it!
My YouTube Chanel on the A320 (Real SOPs by an Airline Pilot IRL):
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0Q6SBASRqJ

User avatar
jph
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Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 12:50 pm
Location: Somewhere over the rainbow..

Re: Airmanager via pico-projectors

#10 Post by jph »

Just a thought Jacques,
There is already an Arduino on AM on the OMI indicator lights so that could be used for the encoder test.
Joe
“Everything in moderation, including moderation.”
“Experience is merely the name men gave to their mistakes.”
Joe (CISSP) -IT security consultant

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