This is a UH-1-style collective head. Its dimensions are based on the measurements and photos found on the Internet, it’s almost scale. Mode switch is installed in a place of a light bulb, as it’s much more useful in this case. In its default software configuration, it’s set up in a way so you can assign switches of the DCS Huey’s head to it. It can also start a DCS Huey (it will operate its throttle below idle stop detent). Note: if you’re starting a flight cold and dark, your throttle should be closed for this feature to work properly!
You will need:
1 x PLA plastic coil
1 x KY-023 joystick module
2 x KN3(B)-223A-A3 or similar switch
1 x MTS-103 A-2
2 x KN3(B)-203A-A3 or similar switch
1 x PBS-16B
1 x PBS-10B-2
5 x M3x50mm screws
1 x M3x35mm screws
1 x M3x30MM screws
4 x M3x12mm screws
4 x M3x10mm screws
1 x TJ8-8P8 Ethernet socket
1 x Arduino Pro Mini
- DCS Huey startup / shutdown support
- Collective hold (thumbstick click)
- hat switch supports 4-way or 8-way modes
- 4 switch operation modes for every possible use case scenario
- mode switch triples the number of switches / buttons configured as pushbuttons
- Carefully remove supports. Note that inside of the housing there are internal structures that, in theory, can be broken accidentally (though they have been strengthened to avoid that). Press-fit nuts into their sockets on the bottom of the head.
- Insert switches to the housing cover. Two switches in the bottom should be spring-loaded type ( (ON)-OFF(ON) ), two upper switches – toggle type ( ON-OFF-ON ).
- Break pin parts with screws off the switches.
- It’s time to heat up your soldering iron and a glue gun. Put some solder onto contact pads of the switches (don’t forget to use some flux). Be careful – do not overheat switches too much.
- Cut a wire off the ribbon cable, and connect ground (middle) pins of the switches and the button together, as shown on picture.
- Cut a 12-wire cable off the ribbon. Solder wires one by one, following numbers on the picture. The last wire will be the ground one. Use the same contact pads row where the ground wire is.
- Fix stuff with hot glue so it won’t move.
- Solder 5-wire cable, cut off the ribbon, to the pot board. Put it onto its frame, fix with 4x M3x10MM screws.
- Solder UART header to the Pro Mini.
- Starting from pin0, solder the 12-wire switches cable to Pro Mini’s digital pins. The wire of the button should go to pin10, and the last wire of the cable should go to the GND pin near it.
- Bend legs of PBS-10B2 button as shown on picture and solder long enough wires to it, then insert it into its socket in the lower part of the housing, fix with its nut (rotate it with pliers or a knife, tighten as possible). Use tiny drops of hot glue on both sides of the button to fix it in place.
- Solder 4-wire cable to 1st 4 pins of an Ethernet socket. Cut off unneeded pins. Bend remaining pins so they won’t protrude too far.
- Press-fit the socket into its slot and check that wires are still connected to the socket with a multimeter. If everything’s ok, pour a fair amount of hot glue to fix it in place.
- Solder one of starter button’s pins (PBS-10B2) to pin11, another one – to the ground. Use a spare GND pin of the UART header on the Pro Mini, or some switch’s central contact pad (the same row where wires are soldered!) at your discretion.
- Solder pot board wires as follows:
GND-> GND pin next to reset pin
+5V->ETHERNET SOCKET PIN 1 ->ARDUINO VCC pin
- Solder ethernet soket wires as follows:
SOCKET PIN1 -> VCC (should be soldered already after the previous step)
SOCKET PIN2 -> GND
SOCKET PIN3 -> SCL (A5)
SOCKET PIN4 -> SDA (A4)
- That’s it! Time to flash Pro Mini board! Uncomment “Serial.begin” line and lines under “\\DEBUG” line. When flashing, make sure that all switches are centered.
- Open serial port monitor in Arduino IDE. You should see something like this:
00000010 00100000 124 128
Something around 128 in two last numbers means your potentiometers are connected properly (0 or 255 means there’s a problem!). Flip all switches and press all buttons (including the thumbstick button!), you should see 1s popping up in the line. Note, that the left upper switch in its lower position will temporarily cut off serial port communication, that’s fine. Just flip it back to continue.
- When you have checked all switches and buttons, comment out “Serial.begin” line and lines under “\\DEBUG” line and re-flash the firmware.
- Put everything together! Use 4x M3x50mm screws for fastening the lid and 4x12mm screws for the pot board frame.
- Insert the starter trigger and fix it with an M3x30mm screw. Drill out its hole if needed to make it rotate freely. If its travel range is too short, file the lower edge of its slot just a bit.
Congratulations! Your Huey-style collective head is ready for a test flight!