3D Printed Flight Simulator Panel V2

EDIT: You can find all the panels available on my Google Drive here.


Original Message
May I present my 3D printed Flight Simulator Panel, version 2.

Daniel Malloy’s Flight Simulator Panel V2

This was constructed using off-the-shelf components from Amazon, utilizing 3D printed face panels and enclosure. I’m sure you can modify the design instead of 3D printing the parts, but I have included all the files necessary. The main component for this build is a Teensy 4.1 development board that allows this panel to simulate a joystick. You can also update the code to your liking… it is currently set up to momentarily push a button when you flip a switch, but can be changed to continuously press a button instead (Use the Set option for the control you want to bind if you do this)

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Great job I like the modular dove tail design. Plans to make any other panels?

Very nice !

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Thanks! Yes, I was planning to make a scaled down replica of the X-Cub using a 7-inch touch screen next. Once Microsoft fixes the touch screen issues with the pop-outs, that’ll be in the works!

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Do you have a thingiverse profile we can follow?

Considering the ridiculous prices these panels sell for you have done a great job!

Nicely done, I’ve been looking at doing something similar for different aircraft. I’m exploring a technique to use debossed labeling filled with a white paint like material after printing to make the printed labels stand out more and easier to read (see here - https://markforged.com/blog/engraver-filler-labeling/).

Also curious why you chose a teensy rather than a leo bodnar card (http://www.leobodnar.com/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=94&products_id=205)

Don’t get me wrong, I love your work - i’m just interested in learning from your efforts!

I’ve fixed the touch screen issue on the panels. See my other post:

@TheBigBobo86, I do have a Thingiverse profile, but I haven’t put this up there… I guess I prolly should though so I’ll get to that soon! I originally released it on my Discord server for my Twitch followers… thought more people could benefit so here we are.

My Thingiverse Profile

@RogueSquare1024, thank you very much! Don’t forget, its an easy process with the Teensy board and even buying extra switches and everything, it only cost me approximately $80 USD. And if you don’t have access to a 3D printer for the face plates, you can use lexan or even wood just as easily.

@j9murphy, I did something similar for my personal 3D printed business cards with a resin printer where I filled in a QR code on a large coin-sized logo similar to my profile picture. I used nail polish for it actually! Also, had good experience with a simple sharpie and coloring raised lettering; both with a resin printer and FDM.

I think you may find FDM prints hard to get the lettering down to the desired size AND keep the part flat… You’ll most likely have to print vertical, or at least at an angle. An idea I may play with is print the bulk of the panel with the FDM for speed and size, then come back and print inserts using a resin printer where the text needs to go… That or resize the whole thing to be printed in resin instead… Feel free to PM me or something to go into more details!

As for why I chose Teensy versus Leo bodnar or another board… First, it’s extremely cheap! Even for the most expensive board like I bought, I only spend $30 USD on it. Second, I wanted the ability to program the buttons/switches in case Microsoft Flight Simulator couldn’t support multiple buttons on a “joystick” staying pressed. With Teensy, you program it as you would an Arduino and can use libraries to help accomplish what you’re wanting to do. In my case, my first version was set up to where all the toggle switches would “press a joystick button” for 50-ms when flipped from the off or on position. I knew this would allow me to use the panel regardless of game. The physical board is also smaller, which was a very minimal deciding factor, but still worth mentioning. I really am curious about their Low-Cost board I saw the other day for $15 USD… in the future will most likely have some more panels that center around that one!

@Virtuoso5014, that is awesome that you were able to get the touch screen working!!! I’m going to pull out my display again and try changing the code like you did! Thank you VERY much for letting me know.

@DanielMalloy thank you very much for your reply. I have a Teensy on order for another project I’m working on, but I’ve mostly used an Arduino to this point. Did you select the Teensy instead of the Arduino because of the number inputs or was there another reason? I assume for this purpose the faster processor in the teensy isnt really necessary?

It was for its simplicity to program… I had no experience in coding arduino or similar before this project, but found the teensy to be extremely easy to copy/paste code and expand it to fit my needs. Any help you need, just holler!

This is amazing. I was considering modding an old keyboard but this is way better. Will have a good look at this over tge weekend.

@ DanielMalloy
All I can say is: WoW, Great work.
Thanks for sharing.

@Lotharen7659, I really recommend giving it a go. This is the first time I’ve used a Teensy board and the programming is so simple. Also, you’re not limited to my faceplate setup… It is easy to build this by just drilling holes into a box or a sheet of anything. Heck, for a simple layout change, I’d be fine with making another panel layout that way it could be swapped out of the enclosure(s) I’ve designed.

@Everyone, If you are thinking about this build, or even one similar, just jump in and do it! I can help and I know there are others out here that are willing to help too! I dare you to find a better setup for right around $80 USD in hardware!

Great work. Are you able to share the code for the panels? Thx

*for programming the teensy board?

I sure have @thedingo67! You will find the code, and everything you may need, in the zip file I linked to in the first post. Also, it is really easy to edit that code to make the switches constant on if that is your preference instead of momentarily pressing a button.

If you run into any issues getting the code, just let me know and I’ll see if I can find a simpler way to make sure you find it / get it.

Thank you for those suggestions. I have a 3D printer and this is just another excuse for me to use it lol. I’ve been designing 3D printed terrain for D&D and it will be a nice break from that.

Great project.

If someone doesn’t has a 3d printer an alternative can be to make use of PCB manufacturers to get a nice looking front panel. Especially companies like jlcpb, pcbway or similar are not that expensive. Create a pcb with a black solder mask at the size of the front panel, insert the cutouts for the switches and encoders and add the text and holes for the screws.

It’s usually much cheaper than going for a CNC service while it’s still solid enough if you screw it into some sort of frame. .

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One of the best designs I’ve seen. Love that you made in modular and interlocking. Obviously you have a background in brilliance :heart_eyes:

Thank you for publishing to the community