DIY Pilots Chair

So you're done with flying for the time being and you want to unwind. For general chatter and to discuss non-Elite subjects, this is the place.
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Dayrth
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DIY Pilots Chair

Postby Dayrth » Fri Mar 11, 2016 8:14 am

I have recently discovered a substance known as Polymorph Plastic. Being a bit of a Red Dwarf fan I was a bit wary of it to start with ;) but it turns out to be one of the most useful things ever for DIY. Basically it is a plastic that becomes moldable at 67oC, so pour over some boiling water, fish it out with a fork and make whatever you need.

My immediate thought was 'I can use this to make a pilot's chair', so I grabbed 3 offcuts of OSB and a kettle and that's what I did.

The reason I had not attached my controls to the chair before was that there was no convenient way to fix anything to the arms. The underside is uneven and rounded. With the polymorph though, all I had to do was put a couple of screws through the wood and drill 2 corresponding holes in the underside on the chair arm, then mold a block of polymorph around the screws and screw the wood on to the arm then let the plastic set in position. The resulting join is completely solid and there is no movement at all.
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As you can see, I was not too worried about how it looks, so just left it sort of blobby, but if you want smooth sides and straight edges it is quite easy to shape as it sets.

Next I rolled out two more bits and squashed them between the edges of two bits of wood. This gave me two 'channels' to slide in a cross piece after sitting down.

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Once assembled it looks like this:
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I did find that the cables got in the way when getting in or out of the chair, so the stick is screwed down, but I used a bit more plastic to make two pegs for the throttle to sit on. Now I can lift the throttle off for easy access.
A 1Kg bag of polymorph cost me less than £20 and I have not used more than 250g on this.

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1 - HOTAS stick.
2 - HOTAS throttle.
3 - Headset with ED Tracker.
4 - USB hub.
5 - Trackball. Needs a lot less room than a mouse. I use this for the UI and SRV turret control.
6 - Numeric keypad. Programmed to handle wing commands, docking request, launching and power management.
7 - The most important part. Mug holder for my tea :)
[Remember Wheatons Law]
User avatar
Dayrth
Site Admin
Posts: 797
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:26 am
Location: Somerset or Hampshire depending
Ships Owned: Sidewinder, Imperial Eagle, Viper mk4, Asp Explorer, Vulture, Fer de Lance, Python

Re: DIY Pilots Chair

Postby Dayrth » Mon Mar 14, 2016 7:55 am

Came across this today:

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Homemade analog joystick for the BBC B. My first ever Elite DIY project circa 1984

I still have the BBC B and the original Elite floppy disc. I must set it up and see if it still works one day.
[Remember Wheatons Law]

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