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  1. #1
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    Generic/737/whatever Panel - Input please :)

    Ok so... I took the plunge and i guess, in retrospect i could have done this differently because as i was going along I added a lights panel and "engine" panel. Now i know the purists will cringe but hey, I have limited funds and SOME skill BUT - i could have bought a couple of OC kits for maybe a little more. But that's ok!!

    So I basically went with toggles and push buttons in place of rotaries. I used the idea of relays and capacitors to give a momentary key press with a toggle moved up or down. They are DPDT toggles which one side will switch an LED on or off and the other giving a pulse via the relay and capacitor setup. I am also using a power supply from a PC to power all of this.

    I have stripped a Dell keyboard and mapped, using a multimeter, all the letter keys and a few others. But anyways, the idea was primarily a basic MCP. Now I also have a light and engine start and shutdown panel with Gear switch.

    Now, my question is, I have black and clear perspex cut to size. I just need to drill for LEDs etc. I need some advice.

    I have 2x clear and 1x black perspex for each panel. SO the question is, how reflective would an LED be placed in clear perspex - in terms of "bleed" - would it illuminate an area (in the way fiber optics would) larger than wanted? I was thinking of printing the panels and sandwiching between 2 clear pieces OR on black only pasting the panel face on it and spraying clear lacquer over to protect it... any ideas? Thanks in advance.

    I have added in the pic of the panel layout. If anyone wants the visio files give me a shout.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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  3. #2
    300+ Forum Addict Rodney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shearder View Post
    Now, my question is, I have black and clear perspex cut to size. I just need to drill for LEDs etc. I need some advice.

    I have 2x clear and 1x black perspex for each panel. SO the question is, how reflective would an LED be placed in clear perspex - in terms of "bleed" - would it illuminate an area (in the way fiber optics would) larger than wanted? I was thinking of printing the panels and sandwiching between 2 clear pieces OR on black only pasting the panel face on it and spraying clear lacquer over to protect it... any ideas? Thanks in advance.
    There are allot of builders whom have made their own backlit panels. If you are fortunate enough to get a peek of a real one you would understand it well. Search this site for backlighting, panels, or any other keywords associated with it. But the best advice I would offer is to take a 2"X2" or so piece and experiment. Drill a hole for an led, throw some power to it and try to find what suits you best. That is what others have done to start.
    Rodney -
    Real 727-200 pit
    Last Flown as N392PA
    FS9

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  5. #3
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    Thanks Rodney, i shall do that and see what goes best but before doing that i will check for backlighting.

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    OK here is an idea i have - not my own but slightly different - i will take a sheet of perspex and sand it lightly (thanks Fritz) then get some transparency sheets and print my panel mirrored so that the ink is on the inside then flip it over and back it with some dark card then place that onto the front of the "misty" perspex and back light.

    I unfortunately couldn't find descent small lights i.e. from xmas tree lights. Wrong time of the year and it isn't financially feasible to go and buy a whole bunch of little globes. However, what i did find was a set of 50 LED xmas tree lights which are clear or a very slight zenon colour. They are concaved instead of round or flat topped so gives a slight diffusion but i will see what i can do to use them. I am sure it will work OK... not perfect. But hey, for R10 or $1.20+/- i won't moan.

    [EDIT to add:]
    Oh i forgot. I will also print the panel out in draft so that i can use it as a template to cut the dark card where necessary.

  7. #5
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    OK I changed my mind on the transparency sheets purely because, and this is personal, i think the LEDs will be too bright and require a lot more defusing.

    So, I will try the LEDs through the paper medium masked with heavy paper board to only let light through where it is required and see how that pans out.

  8. #6
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    Does anyone have a proper RBG colour code for the 737 panels? I wouldlike to print it as close as possible.

    Thanks in advance.

  9. #7
    2000+ Poster - Never Leaves the Sim Michael Carter's Avatar
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    Any color gray that's close is close enough. Panels seldom match colors except in brand new aircraft that have not had any maintenance performed.
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  10. #8
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    Thanks a stacl Michael. I will leave it then in the colour i attached. Much appreciated.

  11. #9
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    OK so i have done most of the wiring from the board. I just need to wire up the keyboard I chopped up so i can connect the wires from the relays to it. I have attached what i have done so far. Doesn't seem like much but MAN does it take time!!
    Attached Files Attached Files

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