Hjem 737 Cockpit project Cockpit related Overhead gauges and displays - Gauges mounted
Overhead gauges and displays - Gauges mounted Print E-mail
Written by Vidar Fagerjord   
Friday, 23 March 2012 00:08
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Gauges mounted!

Finally, all the gauges are mounted in the forward overhead. All gauge rings with lenses has been mounted as well, apart from fuel and duct temp. Those will get some special attention to detail soon. I had to fabricate lenses for the gauge rings in order to get "glass" in front of them. Tedious job! I made a sheet of paper into a big sticker (using a scrapbook laminating machine of all things!), then I used a compass to draw the 6 lenses on the paper. The big one for the diff press gauge came from a Simkits instrument kit I had "lying around". :)

After I made a big sticker with 6 rings on it, I applied it to a 2mm acrylic glass sheet. I then cut out each ring and sanded it to shape. I fine-tuned the fit to the rings with a file and some 180 grit sand paper, leaving the edges "frosted". I then glued the lenses into the rings with some plastic model glue, leaving .5mm of the lens protruding to create a nice, 3D effect - and in the same time leave extra space between the lens and the gauge pointers.


Here's the 6 gauge rings with lenses fitted. The 7th lens is for the oxy press gauge in the aft overhead.

The cabin diff press gauge ring and lens, showing the protruding lens.


And here's a few pictures of the gauges WITH rings and lenses fitted:

The EGT gauge for the APU.

The cabin diff press gauge and the cabin climb gauge. Nice reflection on the cabin climb gauge!


You might notice that the cabin diff press gauge looks different from the Opencockpit one. The outer ring was too wide for my FlyEngravity overhead - the numbers was partly hidden behind the back plate. I cut a piece of plexi glass to shape (and gained access to the four screws in the same time, as the OC gauge is too narrow for the FlyEngravity OH), routed a hole in the middle and painted the edges of the hole black. I then used the decal included with my overhead kit, and cut away the center portion. For that, I used the OC gauge as provided. And I am VERY happy with the result! The yellow / red colored part adds to realism. I might get hold of some blue transparent paint for the cabin climb gauge. Just because I can, and because I am a detail freak - to a certain degree, that is.

PS: I used the same method for creating the new faceplate as I did for the lenses. Made a sticker, applied to the acrylic piece, drew the diagonals between the holes to find the center. Using the compass, I then drew the required circles to aid the cutting of the hole. I used the Dremel with a straight router bit, all mounted in the drill press stand for the Dremel. Messy, but very accurate and effective.

The duct press gauge backlit by my desktop lamp. Not the best effect on the outer ring since the gauge consist of 2 white, opaque pieces. Acceptable, though!


The last two gauge rings will, as mentioned earlier, get some extra attention to detail. More on that later.

Update 08.04.12

The final gauges on the FWD overhead are now mounted and ready for use. The cabin temp and fuel temp gauges needed a little extra detailing. I cut out a detail from the decals provided with the overhead kit and mounted it on the gauges, then mounted the lens. Here's the result:

The fuel temp gauge

The cabin temp gauge

The lenses give a very nice effect with the reflection in the glass. Looks very real!

And here's an image of the overhead with almost all the gauges shown:

That concludes the gauge part for the overhead. I'll post an image of the oxy press gauge in the aft overhead when that one is mounted.

The next part will be to configure the gauges and the displays on the overhead using Opencockpits cards and SIOC software. I've also considered ordering simkits electronics cards for the gauges, as they are somewhat easier to work with. Haven't decided on that yet.

All in all, I am very happy with the Opencockpits gauges. The quality is decent, and you get a lot for your money. The Flight Illusion gauges would be far better, but they costs about twice what the OC gauges costs.

The dual opaque layering on some of the gauges causes the outermost lettering to be a lot dimmer than the innermost. This could be solved by cutting the innermost piece around the gauge face and replace the area around it with clear plexi glass. Another option would be to follow the solution I came up with for the cabin diff.pressure gauge: making a new faceplate (clear) for the outermost piece and use a sticker for the gauge face. The backlighting on my diff.press. gauge is very even because of this.

The OC gauges comes with "okay" servos. One of the gauges is acting up, and I think the servo might be defective or damaged. I'll consider swapping it, or leave the oxy press gauge as a dummy (swapping the servos from the oxy press to the defective one).



Last Updated on Sunday, 08 April 2012 16:58
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