Question re: SPAD.Next

Hello, I am trying to determine if will solve a particular problem I have.
I love flying the Big Radials P-40B, but I would like to be able to use the flaps and gear the way they were deployed in real life. You can actually do this using the mouse, by clicking and moving either the flaps lever (in the virtual cockpit) or the landing gear lever into the “up” or “down” position, then pressing the button on the joystick to raise or lower the flaps or gear, again, using the mouse.

There are currently no keyboard key mappings that are analogous to these controls, one MUST use the mouse and click on these virtual controls.

Will SPAD.Next enable me to “map” these mouse-controlled features to my Thrustmaster Joystick, or some other controller, i.e., can I “create” key presses to emulate these mouse-controlled features?

Sorry for the wordy ask, but I don’t know how else to describe it-
Thanks in advance for any help-

I can’t see any reason why not. As long as SPAD can see your controller, you can assign a simvar to a button, rotary, two pole switch etc.

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Well, if true, I guess I have to teach myself how to do it. I hope it is an easy-to-learn endeavor…

Agree with Hobanagerik. Spad can do what you’re looking for, but be advised it does have somewhat of a learning curve. However, if an old guy like me can figure it out, anyone can! The people on the Spad Discord channel are very helpful and once you learn what it can do, you won’t fly without it!


Agreed!!! @Nazarene455 it is NOT an [quote=“Nazarene455, post:3, topic:600334”]
easy-to-learn endeavour [/quote]. However, there is plenty of help in their Discord channel (as long as you remain CIVIL). Spad is especially good if you’ve got some hardware controllers and/or panels.

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Yes SPAD Next is ideal for this. As indicated above there is a steep learning curve to become proficient with SPAD Next. Watch the introductory videos and take your time to learn to use it. The several experts on the SPAD Discord are more than happy to help answer any questions so long as they believe you are making an effort to learn but if you expect them to do the work for you they can become rather grumpy.


Take a look at the youtube tutorials from Les O’reilly.

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It’s not too hard to use. Assigning a function to a button is easy. Finding out what to assign is often the hard part, but there are a number of tools to assist with this, some built into SPAD, others in dev mode. Once you have that technique down, it will speed up the process for other planes.

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As others have said, SPAD has a steep learning curve and unfortunately does NOT have any active forum to seek help.

It DOES have a two week trial period wich should be enough for you to find out wether its for you or not.

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SPAD can do some pretty cool things. I’ve been using it for a few months, and still consider myself an intermediate beginner. I enjoy learning how to control things in ways the sim’s built-in control options can’t dream of.

For example: For my Bonanza I created an event to open/close the cowl flaps based on cylinder head temp. The flaps can be set to increment or decrement with each short press of the lever on my HC Bravo, or extend/retract fully with a long button press. You could create a conditional event that would prevent the gear from opening above a certain airspeed.

I still have much to learn, but as others have said, there are some real experts on the Discord who are willing to help, as long as you show them you are willing to learn and share the things you’ve learned. The hundreds of online snippets other users have created (not available to users of the free version) are also invaluable. The Discord itself can be a little confusing. You need to learn what each channel is to be used for, and you’ll get scolded if you ask a question in wrong one. But that’s more a function of how much Discord sucks in general.

I get a little frustrated at times when I run into roadblocks caused by certain code that isn’t exposed by the sim’s SDK. For example, I create a simple event to turn NAV lights on, and when I throw the switch on my HC Alpha the lights come on and the switch in the virtual cockpit moves. Then I create another event to turn the strobes on, and I see the strobes in external view, but the virtual switch doesn’t move. I’ve learned those are what are called ‘B-events’ and there’s nothing SPAD can do about. It’s a pretty minor (but to me, pretty irritating) detail. I wish the sim would expose everything to the developers, but I’m not sure that’ll ever happen.

And if you fly multiple aircraft, having your SPAD profiles load automatically when you switch to a new plane in the sim is pretty handy. In short, SPAD is worth the time and money if you want to learn it, and spend the time to learn to learn it. Don’t buy it to just do one thing. Buy it to do a lot of things. But recognize that it can also consume a lot of flight time as you sit in an airport parking spot figuring out how to eliminate mouse clicks in all your cockpits.


Other than their very much active Discord you mean?

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Activity is one thing, and SPAD’s is among the best.

I’m talking about the overall structure, ease of navigation, and thread tools available in Discord in general.

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Spad will enable you to map those functions to a joystick provided that the developer programmed the aircraft with variables that you can access via Spad. Most developers do some do not. If BVARs are used they are not accessible to Spad for instance.

There is a learning curve to anything. Spad is far easier to learn than RPN which is needed if you are going to go for AAO and Spad has a very easy to understand GUI once you become familiar with the program.

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Correct. No active forum, only Discord.

What exactly do you think the word forum means? Fora existed before there were computers, and websites.

From the Oxford dictionary:

a meeting or medium where ideas and views on a particular issue can be exchanged.

“we hope these pages act as a forum for debate”

Discord is a medium, where people discuss things and exhange ideas. It doesn’t have to be a website built with “forum” software. If you want to argue for the sake of it, be warned I’ll bring facts, and evidence. :wink:


Thanks for all the great answers, guys. I am trusting that most read my original post carefully and are responding with the knowledge that what I want to achieve first with SPAD does not have an existing key mapping in MSFS. It sounds like this is understood and that this should not stop me from being successful. After this trial endeavor I’m sure I will be using SPAD for lots of stuff (like mapping a key to open the d*** canopy on the planes without using the mouse).
Again, thanks!

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Yes, so long as the ‘event’ or data value/variable is visible to SPAD, you will be able to use SPAD to map/bind it to pretty much any key, switch or button on pretty much any external peripheral.

You are not limited to the actions listed in MSFS controls. With a good aircraft like the PMDG 737 or the HPG H145 it is possible to map every single button, dial or switch and even things like external aircraft states (chocks etc) or functions on an EFB (except not the PMDG 737 EFB…which presently has unicorn status).


Not only that, but you can set conditions like: “Only allow the canopy to open if airspeed < 80 knots AND altitude < 12,000 ft.”

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One of the biggest benefits of SPAD.neXt are access to L:VARs and H:Events in third party aircraft.

L:VARs and H:Events are additional Variables and Sim Control events that are not part of the “Standard” events in Sim connect. This requires an Additional Bridge be installed.

Read the above doc and watch the videos linked in it.