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Question Huge thanks and 2019 opinion request from those that have already fought the fight.

Discussion in 'DIY Motion Simulator Projects' started by Griff, Aug 15, 2019 at 20:36.

  1. Griff

    Griff New Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK, Motion platform, 6DOF
    Sorry, this may be a little LONG.....
    I tinker so like all of you I do more READING than anything. I have a fair number of hobbies, wife says too many, and it is rare to find a single forum that has as much knowledge in one place as I have found on this one!


    First off, thanks to @SilentChill , @SeatTime , @wannabeaflyer2 and many others for documenting all of your trials AND errors! That level of transparency from folks such as yourself saves SOOOO many hours of frustration for the rest of us!! (ie...MM boards) I just wanted to thank all of you for your time. I love to help others learn and grow and I know how much time can be spent helping others...so THANKS again!


    The one thing I have a difficult time with is after reading well over 100 pages of progress and updates from some very bright and dedicated folks, I wonder... If person "X" had it to do all over again, what would they most likely do given the challenges they have faced and learned along the way? On that note, I would like to propose my plan, and why, and I would appreciate any input or guidance you would be willing to provide. I will try to bold my actual questions.


    Me/my goals

    I got my pilot license when I was 12 and really miss flying. Flight sims are about all I have time for these days, and I spend a good chunk of my sleepless nights in DCS. I am also in the process of building a 1990 Mazda Miata with a turbocharged 2015 GM 3.6 to run a 3 stage race in Mexico next year. I get out on the track when I can, but have really enjoyed racing sims lately as a way to practice the basics from the comfort of my office.


    I would LOVE to build a 6DOF platform, but the reality is I just simply don't have the space for it in our current home. I have an AMAZING wife, but I'm pretty sure she would put her foot down on a properly engineered 6DOF in the livingroom. Due to my space constraints and desire for a flight/racing sim rig I plan to build a "compact" 4DOF rig using my Oculus Rift S for display. Hopefully, this will bring even more joy and realism to DCS and various racing sims.


    “X”DOF and overall design????

    I am still researching the options, but given this will be a DIY project I like what the FREX QUAD-Motion design can provide for a given floor space. I think the range of motion and yaw axis will be more than enough for my needs at this time. Any reason to not go this way?

    Actuators?
    I am thinking about getting a 3D Printer that can produce nylon parts for this project as well as various bits I need for the race car. Still looking into which printer would be best and any advice would be appreciated because I know ZERO about 3D printers. This leads me to the actuators… I have read so much I think I am 100% confused about what makes the most sense for my build. I would like to keep costs down, and I will only have basic shop tools, a TIG and eventually a 3D printer to work with. Should I build my own linear actuators or build a crank system? I’d like to keep the cost at ~$300 mark for each actuator if possible. For either design, is there a clear choice for motor and/or worm gear close to that price? Or, is there a setup that is more expensive but worth the additional cost due to simplicity and reduction in fabrication(time)?

    Controller(s)?
    I plan to use a pair of Sabertooth 2X60 controllers with appropriate power supplies unless there is a compelling argument to use something else and spend more than $350. If you feel I should use a different controller, which one and why?

    Interface
    Obviously, I will be using SimTools to interface with DCS, DirtX, Project Cars, ….. I have not gotten into the interface research yet so not sure how much of the existing code for a 3/6 DOF interface would apply to a 3 actuators with a yaw axis but I can’t imagine I would not be able to make it work. Will there be any undocumented issues with a 4DOF build that are already solved in a 6DOF build I will be challenged with?

    Final though?
    Would the cost benefit of such a build, other than the joy of doing it my way, outweigh a manufactured option like the DOFReality product?
    $2200 to my door.


    If you made it this far, thanks for your time and input! Soon there will be a Griff build thread to have a good laugh at... ;-)
  2. noorbeast

    noorbeast VR - The Next Generation Staff Member Moderator

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK
    A sketch would help but technically I think what you have in mind is a 3DOF with traction loss, which would be a fairly compact rig for flight and race.

    My suggestion would be to use @Thanos AMC-1280 board: https://www.xsimulator.net/community/faq/amc1280usb-motion-simulator-controller.336/

    The AMC-1280 board lets you build actuators like the SFX-100 but use them with SimTools: https://github.com/SimFeedback/SimFeedback-AC-Servo/tree/master/STL

    Or consider using plug and play PT- Actuators with the AMC-1280: https://www.xsimulator.net/community/threads/pt-actuators-3dof-system.13568/page-3#post-182759

    Such a rig would have the benefit of heave and more precision compared to a DOFreality rig.

    As an aside some have also built compact 6DOF rigs:

    Grigory's 6DOF compact 220V servos: https://www.xsimulator.net/communit...ct-and-no-linear-actuators-220v-servos.11839/

    Compact 6dof, fully detailed drawings and construction details
    by zigzag49
    http://www.xsimulator.net/community/threads/6dof-dc-24v-smolka-zigzag49.7490/#post-89119

    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019 at 00:39
  3. SeatTime

    SeatTime Well-Known Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    DC motor, Motion platform, 6DOF
    So, if I was going to do it again - would likely look at AC servo motors, or even maybe a ODrive and brushless motors setup. Nowadays the final total cost is really not that much different. As for actuators Vs a worm drive crank system - you cannot beat the almost zero backlash of a ballscrew. A standard quality wormscrews backlash can cause all sorts of unwanted rig movement/shaking and feedback control issues. I can push hard on my rig and it does not move a mm. There are good quality gearboxes out there, but you will pay. 4DOF vs 6DOF - depends how important those other two DOFs are to you for simulation. There are other ways around this - although = more money. How far do you want to go down this rabbit hole :). 3D printer, I have a Original PRUSA i3 - not cheap, but just works beautifully, auto calibration - never had a issue.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019 at 01:14
  4. Griff

    Griff New Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK, Motion platform, 6DOF
    Thank you for the reply and all of the links! I'm sure I would have made it to a couple of them but one took me to here: https://www.racedepartment.com/thre...-simulator-thread.159524/page-98#post-2899157 which was a HUGE time saver!

    As in most everything I have built so far, my creation was slightly more expensive that a purchased option but far greater in quality and functionality. Pretty sure this one will be no different...

    Thanks again for all the input and advice.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Griff

    Griff New Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK, Motion platform, 6DOF
    Thanks for helping me make a final decision on servo/ballscrew! Just like my car build, I try to make a plan and then I force myself to stick to it otherwise I will end up with a warehouse and one of these!
  6. Griff

    Griff New Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK, Motion platform, 6DOF
    @noorbeast - Thanks again for the links and I have been doing a fair bit or reading. I think I have decided on the SFX-100 Actuators but based on the links the for the servo motors they are controlled via 25 pin connectors. You mentioned the AMC1280USB but would I not need the AMC-AASD15A for that type of motor? If so, is there a big advantage of using that controller over the Arduino Leonardo that they advise? Pretty big difference in price between the two but willing to pay the difference if I had a better idea of what the real benefit is.
  7. noorbeast

    noorbeast VR - The Next Generation Staff Member Moderator

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK
    The advantage of @Thanos AMC1280 is integration with SimTools, with all the motion plugins, additional functionality and modules that come with that integration, as well as huge community, who freely share our expertise and knowledge: https://motionsim.blogspot.com/2019/05/new-firmware-for-easy-aasd-15a.html
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. SilentChill

    SilentChill Problem Maker

    Joined:
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    My Motion Simulator:
    DC motor, Arduino, Motion platform, 6DOF
    I am going ODrive and Brushless motor for my new build which I will hopefully start toward the end of the year and this time try and make it look a bit more professional, I know mines been going now for over 2 years which for some pieces of wood screwed together is pretty good i think :D
    • Like Like x 2
  9. Griff

    Griff New Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    3DOF, DC motor, JRK, Motion platform, 6DOF
    For being made of wood and you testing everything at max settings I am REALLY surprised it is holding up!

    I have already ordered everything but the motors to build the SFX-100 actuators. I am trying to look for any stateside sellers and if there are any better options than 220v AC. Just trying to do as much homework as possible before I spend the money on the advised 15A - AASD motors and controllers.