View Full Version : Boeing engine instruments conversion

Leo Bodnar
03-24-2011, 10:04 AM
Here is a quick video of Boeing engine gauges converted to work on a CANbus. There will be 16 or more gauges all sitting on a single link that carries control data and +24V power. They will be used in Jim's BAe 146 project.

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03-24-2011, 10:21 AM
Simply Amazing work!

03-24-2011, 03:22 PM
WOW I love it !

Are you going to put that on the market ?

Loads of people that want this ! including me !


03-25-2011, 03:24 AM
i wouldn't have expected anything less than pure genius from you matey :o
very, very clever stuff.


03-25-2011, 07:13 AM
I have to agree with all posters!....

for me, this is a distinct turning point in my flight simulator advancement!

I can tell you first hand that it is an extremely clean set up from a connection point of view, and to watch real mechanical gauges come alive and work perfectly and smoothly as you run the thrust levers up and down is a joy I cannot put into words....(there is just something missing using computer screens behind MDF cutouts).

I think that if Leo offers this in kit forum...he is going to be a very busy man.


04-24-2011, 01:21 PM
Wow! CAN bus? That is a great system and really efficient way to do this. I would love to see how you did this. I work on CAN bus systems for a living but have never thought of a way to put them to use for me. How did you program it?
In an unrelated question, do you know how to make a can bus simulator? I have a radio that needs a can bus signal to turn on that I want to install in a non-can bus vehicle. If you know how that would be a BIG help!

04-24-2011, 02:15 PM
This is amazing to say it the least! I had no idea you could convert real gauges to interface with FlightSimulator! I would love to see a video when this get's installed in a home cockpit.

Best regards!

04-25-2011, 10:13 AM
This looks really astonishing, its so nice to see and here all this working! I was once flying in a Level D Do228 simulator with all this mechanical gauges and your results in the video are really great!

Are you only changing the interface of the gauges, or do you really change the way in which they are working? In my understanding a lot of these gauges need special voltages/frequencies/signals to work correctly, how did you overcome that?

05-31-2011, 08:48 PM
Mach 7... I am very impressed. But when do we get to see the final productinstalled and running?

06-01-2011, 03:31 PM
Hello Newbie0.

Thank you for your interest. Leo is still in the process of fine tuning the engine gauges. (I think one of the gauges had a sticky needle)...but rest assured we will post a video of the installed instruments when all the adjustments have been made.


06-02-2011, 07:01 PM
Why has no one thought of CANbus before. Super idea.
Looking forward to seeing the final result.

06-02-2011, 08:06 PM
Can anyone tell me what exactly is 'canbus' is? Does Leo Bodnar offer this product at present, or is this still in the development stage?

06-03-2011, 05:36 AM
Can anyone tell me what exactly is 'canbus' is? Does Leo Bodnar offer this product at present, or is this still in the development stage?

Very brief.
Canbus is a system where you use only 3-wire (supply and a data signal). You connect all components with each other using only three wires. Using digital codes you can give messages to each individual component.

06-03-2011, 06:58 AM
Thank for the explanation Verticalimt. Just looking at the video it seems to be a very nice way to make things clean and tidy begind the gauges. I wonder if anyone else is doing this arrangement.

I was going to use computer screens for my instruments, but afte seeing this I know I won't be satisfied with that.

06-04-2011, 07:53 AM
Here are some video's. Some have already been posted throughout this forum...note that the overhead caution lamps look fuzzy because they are superbright LED's.....they look nice and crisp in person. Also note that the two engine gauges are not positioned in there correct panel holes...(in other words these are not engines 2 and 3).

Most all of my connections with the PC are throught Leo Bodnars joystick controller board..of which I highly recommend! The panel lamps anD sequencing operate from separate IC boards of which I have constructed using microprocessors. (Items such as gear lamps, engine ignition ON and starter operating lights).

Note also the Nav heads (fully operational) that Leo modified are plug and play...and they work great!

I will post more vids when I fill the remaining engine panel holes with gauges.

until then enjoy







06-05-2011, 12:46 PM
This is truely amazing work. It just goes to show there are some very brilliant people out there in this world. I am going to check out Mr. Bodnars site for more information on how these joystick controllers work (I am new at all of this stuff).

Can anyone tell me if Mr. Bodnar offer these engine gauge modifications on his site? and if not, does anyone know when he will ? ((Leo??)

06-05-2011, 04:53 PM
It looks really nice.
I also use Leo Bodnars joystick controller board to my throttle, and the next Leo Bodnars joystick controller board will be used for the "flight guidance Control Panel"

07-28-2011, 07:42 PM
Hello Mike7

Any completed pics or vids yet (all gauges in stack??)


11-03-2012, 01:05 PM
For all of those who keep PM'ing me regarding the Boeing engine gauge conversion using Leo Bodnars Canbus system.....hopefully this email will alleviate me having to constantly reply with the same 'cut and paste' message(s) (not that I don't appreciate your emails...just want to save you some time and money if you decide to go this route).

The bottom line is....this project was started over 2 years ago and to date I have, in my possesion, two gauges and the canbus controller only.

I am not hear to make judgement, or to comment on anything but this project...however, after losing contact with Leo over 2 years ago, I have long since shelved this project and moved forward the 'Open Cockpit" set up (with which you can review on other posts). Although I had originally bought all the gauges I needed and sent them to the UK for modification, in order to complete my project I had to buy everything over again....so yes...it has been a very expensive endeavour for me.

Please feel free to contact me regarding my OC gauges...but I am sorry to say I would rather keep that Canbus wound closed for now.


02-09-2016, 03:27 PM
I have all the gauges of mi 17 and instead of the soft gauges appearing on the LCD i want to get the real gauges to work with the fsx. I know the scope is quite large and i am not asking to the point but i am real excited to fly with real gauges and want your help to get a start up in the sense how can i extract instrument data from the fsx and make it available on the computer USB and secondly kindly tell that it is possible that data can be used by different microcontroller to run different gauges?.