Panel Backlighting coming together

It has been a while since my last post.  I haven’t been idle, just busy working out a plan of attack.

Today I finally completed the initial prototype of my backlighting.  Initial fielding will be in my pedestal, then I will redo the MIP.  The first attempt seems promising, and as you can see, I’ve learned how to create PCB’s and solder SMD LEDs to them.

I tried two different type of SMD LEDs.  The larger ones are 3528’s in warm white (ACTIVE and STANDBY), while the smaller ones are 0603’s in white.  I think I prefer the 0603’s and while they are much smaller, they are easier to solder then the 3528s as they have protruding contacts that you can get to much easier with a soldering iron.

I hope to knock out the VHF and NAV panels this week, and I’ll post video as I get through them.

Here’s a video of the prototype

I just bought a CNC Router…

Stock photo of the Probotix Fireball V90 CNC

Like most cockpit builders, I have spent countless hours scouring the posts at and  I have read, and re-read posts looking for the best way to go about it.   I’ve spent long nights compiling spreadsheets of costs and shipping and parts and vendors…  so much data that I’ve lost track of the spreadsheets.  I’ve come to the conclusion that building everything out of kits is the cheapest way in the long run.  Still…  it takes me out of my budget in the short run.  After some reading I think I have decided that if I’m going to go out of my budget, I will benefit in other ways.  Thus…  I just bought a CNC router!  I hope to make my own parts for the sim.  After it’s all said and done, not counting the materials I’ll waste learning how to use the CNC, I will actually be able to outfit my sim with all the panels, and then some, for about $500 cheaper.  That includes cost of the CNC router!  More to follow on this once I get home from Iraq.

I ended up ordering a Probotix Fireball V90 CNC.  it comes in a kit, and I have to assemble it myself.


Here is the link to the Probotix V90 website: