Welcome to Cockpitbuilders.com. Please login or sign up.

May 15, 2021, 03:57:11 PM

Login with username, password and session length

PROUDLY ENDORSING


Fly Elise-ng
23 Guests, 1 User
Members
  • Total Members: 4032
  • Latest: vasekg
Stats
  • Total Posts: 57065
  • Total Topics: 7599
  • Online Today: 27
  • Online Ever: 582
  • (January 22, 2020, 08:44:01 AM)
Users Online
Users: 1
Guests: 23
Total: 24

COUNTDOWN TO WF2021


WORLDFLIGHT TEAM USA

Will Depart in...

Recent

Welcome

Concerning Trend...or Not?

Started by FredK, January 19, 2021, 03:47:23 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

FredK

January 19, 2021, 03:47:23 PM Last Edit: January 19, 2021, 03:55:55 PM by FredK
I have been contemplating this post for some time now...

I have been involved with this hobby for a bit short of two decades now....started with Project Magenta when it was in its infancy stage coupled with a single seat generic jet setup. Then twelve years ago embarked on a full scale 737NG  replica cockpit featuring a home-crafted shell. It has taken me that long to recently finish it...a real accomplishment I think since more builders than not never seem to get to the finish line.

Over that period I have seen cockpit builders come and go.  Many have stayed the course. Companies servicing cockpit builders have also come and gone. Some companies like FDS that originated with hobbyists have morphed more towards commercial endeavors.

The point of this thread though is that I sense there is a waning interest in cockpit building. For example, it seems to me there is less activity and participation in this forum which unquestionably is the flight sim bellwether of all things cockpit.

It is certainly a lot easier to build a cockpit today than it was years ago given all the fancy hardware that is available...but it is also much more expensive.  Perhaps that is a factor.  Or perhaps people simply do not have the time available given the complexities of life nowadays.  Or perhaps people are more attracted to the "game" side of flight simming ala MSFS2020. Or perhaps building a cockpit is just too much of a challenge given the "instant gratification" scheme of things nowadays.

So please tell me that I am very wrong on this notion.

Let the comments roll....

Fred K
Boeing 737NG-800, Prepar3D v4.5, Sim-Avionics 1.964, SimSync multi-channel (curved screen), Optoma 1080GTDarbee projectors (3), Fly Elise warping, FSGRW weather, FDS OH panels and CDUs, SimParts MIP, FDS SysBoards (OH), CPFlight MCPPro and pedestal panels, FI Gauges, PFC controls, converted motorized TQ (SIOC), Weber seats

blueskydriver

Hey Fred,

I agree with you 100%, but this is just another down trend period for the hobby that has happened before. It's a cycle that occurs based on many outside factors in people's lives from time to time. It can be current events, financial expenditures, or even as simple as the allure of being a pilot is not there so much because the skies are empty(ier).

Knowingly, when we do get new members, I try to push for the "Newbie" factor; by helping them more, answer the same questions because too them it's the first time they asked it, offer to email or call them if they need help, and let them visit my sim to get more involved.

However, with less new people joining there is not much for me too do in that area. So, I generally post about things that may or may not relate to the hobby. I just wish others would do the same a little more, because they might post something unrelating to the sim world, yet it could be something that leads back to it.

For example, discussing 3D printers and how to use them leads to printing sim parts. Or, if someone is really good at programming an Arduino why not make a very basic step by step post or video on how to do it; maybe, do a whole series.

The only person currently doing something like that is Mickey's Flight Deck. His methodology is great, as he keeps it simple and IMHO never assumes ones abilities, he just explains things and keeps it positive.

Lastly, like in the past, things will pick back up, we just gotta give it time. Albeit, that doesn't mean members should post less; instead, you should post more. Talk about whatever...there is a "Jokes" forum here, along with many other forums of interest....

John
| FSX | FDS-MIP OVRHD SYS CARDS FC1| PM | PMDG 737-700 | UTX | GEX | UT7 | ASE | REX2 | AES | TSR | IS | TOPCAT | AvilaSoft EFB | OC CARDS & OVRHD GAUGES| SIMKITS | SW 3D Lights | FS2CREW2010 | FSXPassengers | Flight1 AE | MATROX TH2GO-D | NTHUSIM | 3-Mits EW230Ust Proj |

KyleH

I don't this this is necessarily to do with cockpit building but more with the changing technology preference with online communities. People just aren't posting here as much as they are in other communities. I see almost daily posts in a Facebook group, and a lot of the discussions that used to take place in the forums here are now happening on the Cockpitbuilders Discord server.
I personally do not like this trend as useful information gets lost in the noise of other discussions, where as forums or blogs' allow  discussion to remain on a topic, and searching for information is easier.
Also a lot of discussion is happening in the voice channel where if you weren't there....no information for you. It's great for quickly working through a problem with someone, but no real sharing of information happens with the community at large.

For me this seems to be a trend of the internet in general, or maybe it's just Google forcing us to go to YouTube to watch adds rather than showing forums or blogs in search results.
It used to be you searched for information online and you'd find a forum discussion, blogs or company websites that you could read through and find information you were looking for. Now all you seem to find is a YouTube video that's 20 minutes long and you listen to the host talk about their channel for 10 minutes before even starting to discuss the topic at hand and then the 5 second nugget of information you need is hidden somewhere at 18:45 in. I used to be able to search and find a connection or diagram for my car in about 5 minutes, now I can spend an hour trying to find similar information.
Kyle

Chief Pilot
Worldflight Team USA
http://www.worldflightusa.com

Nat Crea

Fred,
Things have definitely (worse or better?) changed since I ordered my first MIP from FDS...16 years ago!
There was almost no "plug&Play"...hand soldering and wiring every damn switch and annunciator, building CDU's out of old PSOne handsets...LOL.
It was hard, but you LEARNT a lot of basic electronics, engineering, computing YOURSELF.
Now every second post on Facebook forums is "I WANT this diagram, I WANT this information, I WANT I WANT I WANT..."
The new kids on the block are just lazy and need instant gratification.
Because of my humble visual business, I don't post a lot here anymore or other forums, I don't think its respectful appropriate. My pet hate is businesses "spruiking" for business on Forums and Facebook...
I'm currently rebuilding my 737 from the ground up, but again, I don't post much for fear of being "stoned and hung"  ;D

Cheers,

Nat

ame

I think one of the biggest problems is that there still is no "best solution" that everyone wants to use. Everything is bespoke and complex, or closed source, and no-one wants to post the details.

I don't want to build a cockpit, but I do enjoy designing and building things. I have a long-term project to build a control system using simple interface chips, simple communications, and simple hardware.

So far I have built a wet compass, a circuit breaker, a couple of switch panels, 60mm gauges, Collins radio panels, and I am currently working on a Collins FMC for Challenger 300 and a KT-76C.

In general, what bothers me most is the lack of accurate dimensions. And the lack of interest in accurate dimensions. But, that's independent of actually building something and making it work.

Anyway, because the 'controller' space is so fragmented, there is not one solution that is getting traction and getting support, and therefore becoming widespread and popular.

Fundamentally, it is extremely easy to link a switch to a simulator function, or attach an instrument or LED to a simulator output.  Once I have finished enough elements I can demonstrate them working and show how I did it. I don't care if it takes a while, but I'm pretty sure it's going to work well.

The other aspect is itself quite a conundrum. We have so many versatile and inexpensive tools such as 3D printers, desktop CNC, and laser cutters, that physically making stuff should be easy. Even if you don't own something like this they are so cheap and ubiquitous that you ought to know someone who has one. Coupled with cheap electronic modules that are easy to acquire it surprises me that there is not a huge explosion in this hobby.

I think the biggest problem is that cockpit builders just want to fly. I don't have a problem with that, it's just an observation, but it leads to building something as quickly as possible without necessarily learning anything, or taking the time to describe it for others to learn from.

I think the solution is to talk more about these things, in detail, and post useful and complete information (with accurate dimensions and their source, of course). I'm doing it as much as I can, and I plan to do more.

jackpilot

January 21, 2021, 04:59:12 AM #5 Last Edit: January 22, 2021, 05:13:47 AM by jackpilot
We live in a world of instant "gratification" as Nat said.
The new generations want fast solutions and video tools to implement them. No more paper manuals, no more text, ...images are the norm. Simple things like  FSUIPC are apparently too complex for "builders" because they have to dig info from a thick manual.
Besides, with the spectacular visual of 2020, top priority now goes to looking outside, (including from outside of the aircraft) shooting screen shots ad nauseam and uploading them on the net, with basically no interest in flying properly whatever new shiny aircraft is available.

The key words that say it all: Game and Gamers.
My 2 cents
Note: This is a reflection of what I see in other Forums, most notably Euro-forums. Not CockpitBuilders.com...lol


Jack

bernard S

January 21, 2021, 07:44:12 AM #6 Last Edit: January 21, 2021, 07:57:42 AM by bernard S Reason: rant
deleted was a rant

bernard S


AAnnillo

Wow...what a great post.

Being a newbie to home flight deck building, I check this website daily and had noticed it went a little quiet.  I assumed it was due to the holidays and/or very busy schedules, etc.

I enjoy reading the many different posts from some incredible builders here and hope to share the knowledge that I gain in my quest to build and complete my project before I leave this Earth.

Instant gratification...pretty much sums it up, in my opinion.  With so many different types of aircraft being built and so many different interfacing options as well as skill levels, there truly is no 'one-size-fits-all' type of solution.  I, like so many here, just want to build a quality product for myself and share that knowledge.  This takes time and devotion; I sit in complete awe and utter amazement at what builders have created over time and can't help but wonder 'Will I ever get there?' 

I'm still in the process of gutting engine instruments and fitting with automotive gauge stepper motors (X27.168s) as well as experimenting with Arduino.  I sit for hours, hunched over my desk with a soldering iron in one hand, solder in the other, wire coils at the ready...and eagerly anticipate the day when I can put these instruments in a flight deck and fire up my sim.  Long way off, to be sure, and I am enjoying the journey, regardless of the frustrations along the way.  I suspect that frustration levels often drive folks away from their dreams and I understand this.  I don't have the instant gratification gene and know its difficult to get to those successful levels. 

I'll stay with it as I'm not a quitter.

In the meantime, I truly appreciate the assistance and suggestions I've received thus far and look forward to returning the favor some day.

Anthony

Garys

January 21, 2021, 02:45:19 PM #9 Last Edit: January 21, 2021, 03:16:54 PM by Garys
I think its a knock on effect of the aviation industry in general. With the huge amount of low cost carriers in the world with people wanting to travel from one side of the continent to the other for less than the cost of taxi ride, it has taken away a lot the prestige of the industry that we all grew up with.  How many airlines even have a first class section anymore??

The new generation just isn't interested in spending +100,000k in flight training to earn minimums for years. The long term plan to fly left seat on 6 figure incomes just isn't a reality anymore. We were seeing this in the before times with the imminent pilot shortage that was coming. And its just not pilot training either, we are seeing it in maintenance as well.

With flying being just a cheap normal everyday thing, the instant gratification throw away society we now live in, the passion for aviation isn't being built like it was years ago and for the small number that it is, they are being turned away by the expense. I just saw the cost of a popular 737 software suite and damn, I even baulked at the price and with the advancement in VR headsets and technology, taking a spin in a 3d like cockpit is just as satisfying, if not more so in some situations than building a full cockpit.  .

FredK

January 21, 2021, 03:27:21 PM #10 Last Edit: January 21, 2021, 03:30:08 PM by FredK
QuoteI think its a knock on effect of the aviation industry in general. With the huge amount of low cost carriers in the world with people wanting to travel from one side of the continent to the other for less than the cost of taxi ride, it has taken away a lot the prestige of the industry that we all grew up with.

That is an interesting perspective.

Growing up in New York City I remember as a kid my dad taking me out to what was then Idlewild Airport (now JFK) to watch the planes coming and going. Back then you could simply walk into the terminal and go up on the roof where there was an observation deck. The engine roar of those old 707s was incredible.  When the 747 arrived on the scene I thought it was just so incredible that something that big with that many people on board could ever get off the ground....the thrill of watching it lumbar down the runway on takeoff. And of course the glamour of it all....international travel, people smartly dressed for the occasion, the prestige of being a pilot, etc.

So I guess I caught the aviation bug and it never left me.

But to your point...Today the glamour of air travel has diminished to that of riding on a Greyhound bus.....maybe lower actually.  So who can get excited about being a part of it.  My son is an example....he just cannot comprehend why it rings my bell.

Fred K
Boeing 737NG-800, Prepar3D v4.5, Sim-Avionics 1.964, SimSync multi-channel (curved screen), Optoma 1080GTDarbee projectors (3), Fly Elise warping, FSGRW weather, FDS OH panels and CDUs, SimParts MIP, FDS SysBoards (OH), CPFlight MCPPro and pedestal panels, FI Gauges, PFC controls, converted motorized TQ (SIOC), Weber seats

ame

Let me tell you about the glamour of international air travel...

BushPilotSimmer

Just think what these 'New Gens' will pay for your cast offs and first attempts.

Hugh

kattz

I feel bad now because I'm one of those people that say, "please help" or "does anyone have/know...?"...

But I don't use Facebook.

This is a "secret hobby".  The wow factor is over the top from my friends and peers, but the hobby is priced to oblivion.  and most people don't even realize that this hobby is out there.

I have over $35K in my sim.  And I still don't have a floor, no automation, no wiring, etc.  So the cost factor is "fuggeddaboudit". 

FredK

January 22, 2021, 03:13:23 PM #14 Last Edit: January 22, 2021, 03:22:21 PM by FredK
QuoteI feel bad now because I'm one of those people that say, "please help" or "does anyone have/know...?"...

No need to feel that way. I think you are misconstruing some of the messages here. The members here are all too willing to help others....that is proven without a doubt and they derive enjoyment in the process. I believe the issue raised is more directed at "laziness" in some cases (not your case of course) .  This hobby does require significant effort and you do need to do your homework.  Do not expect others to do that part for you.

So keep your questions flowing....

Fred K
Boeing 737NG-800, Prepar3D v4.5, Sim-Avionics 1.964, SimSync multi-channel (curved screen), Optoma 1080GTDarbee projectors (3), Fly Elise warping, FSGRW weather, FDS OH panels and CDUs, SimParts MIP, FDS SysBoards (OH), CPFlight MCPPro and pedestal panels, FI Gauges, PFC controls, converted motorized TQ (SIOC), Weber seats

ame

Gaah! I lost my post. Thanks "power low notification on Android"!

I'll write more on my laptop later because it's faster. What I wanted to say was DIY is much cheaper, but not many people are doing it and posting how.

kattz

Quote from: FredK on January 22, 2021, 03:13:23 PM
QuoteI feel bad now because I'm one of those people that say, "please help" or "does anyone have/know...?"...

No need to feel that way. I think you are misconstruing some of the messages here. The members here are all too willing to help others....that is proven without a doubt and they derive enjoyment in the process. I believe the issue raised is more directed at "laziness" in some cases (not your case of course) .  This hobby does require significant effort and you do need to do your homework.  Do not expect others to do that part for you.

So keep your questions flowing....

Fred K

Thanks, Fred.  But that's my dry wit.  You couldn't see my smirking...

We are starting on the floor this week.

But this is a good topic!

Mach7

My 2 cents worth...I don't think the interest is drying up, but rather the variety of sim builds, (IMO), may lead to a subtle air of boredom.

A high percentage of members on this site fly the B737, most have build there sims with a lot of plug and play devices...some not...but it is still a B737.

Most of the chit chat on here is about the visuals, and associated upgrades and systems related to...this is all exciting, but what peaks my interest...and some other individuals, is different types of simulators that are not supported by FDS or some other vendor.

As ame eluded to, there is a road less travelled when it comes to DIY and developing something that you cannot buy off the shelf.

Personally I have been contacted about various sim builds, most likely because I have access to the actual dimensions of certain airframes....however 98 percent of the people in question see the work ahead and decide to buy or build something generic.

ame also mentioned that most builders just want to "fly"...I agree with this statement, for myself the enjoyment is in the building and ensuring the switches and systems operate exactly or as close to the real aircraft.

This site and it's individuals have guided me and helped me through every step of my process....and without them I could never have attained the level I am at to this point..for this I am very grateful.

My information is always available to whomever asks, with no strings attached....but of course nobody ever asks because they are building generic off the shelf B737 sims...(lol)

(Please do not take this post personally if you have a 737 sim..)

Jim

bernard S

i just can not help myself   third time lucky...  here is my two cents I think when people start out there is confusion between simulatuon emulation and the bloody aircraft .. this is called levelditists .. all of the three mentioned require investment in time effort and money (lots of all) whichever one builds requires third party help is required mine as example has been a full international effort to get it to where it is    its a beast and i still do not fully understand it ( that is the real hurdle for some to get over) furthermore i dont think people realise what it takes to get some of the items required and the expectation is manuels etc should just be put out there i dont mind helping people out in fact if asked i will volunteer info   i just dont like being volentold .. lets be honest a lot of things happen outside of the forum with us grey headed old farts mainly because everyones backgrounds are not too disimilar and disposable income in sim building does not become a public topic etc .. to me the chit chat and bsing that goes with a build is half the fun bottom line reach out and find someone to bs with   !

ame

Well, based on the activity here in the last few days I think the OP has a point.

There seems to be a constant stream of posts at XPlane.org, but mostly about some software that is broken, not about building stuff.

kattz

There seems to be a lot of activity on building at the Pro-Sim forum.

If I had all of this to do over again, I wouldn't have went the B738 route.  Cessna Citation or Lear.

bernard S

if i could   i would do something like an attack helicopter or fighter like a10   .. 74 is not designed to blow s*&t up lol

blueskydriver

Hey Bernard,

Go look at Public Surplus right now, search for flight simulator, you might go for this big time!

There is an ad for it here, but awaiting approval from Trevor on it...

John
| FSX | FDS-MIP OVRHD SYS CARDS FC1| PM | PMDG 737-700 | UTX | GEX | UT7 | ASE | REX2 | AES | TSR | IS | TOPCAT | AvilaSoft EFB | OC CARDS & OVRHD GAUGES| SIMKITS | SW 3D Lights | FS2CREW2010 | FSXPassengers | Flight1 AE | MATROX TH2GO-D | NTHUSIM | 3-Mits EW230Ust Proj |

FredK

January 31, 2021, 01:16:31 PM #23 Last Edit: January 31, 2021, 01:18:50 PM by FredK
QuoteHey Bernard,

Go look at Public Surplus right now, search for flight simulator, you might go for this big time!

There is an ad for it here, but awaiting approval from Trevor on it...

John

Actually that's a pretty compelling offering!

All you need is some extra space which for Bernard is not an issue I believe.  Maybe even buy two for dogfights.

Fred K
Boeing 737NG-800, Prepar3D v4.5, Sim-Avionics 1.964, SimSync multi-channel (curved screen), Optoma 1080GTDarbee projectors (3), Fly Elise warping, FSGRW weather, FDS OH panels and CDUs, SimParts MIP, FDS SysBoards (OH), CPFlight MCPPro and pedestal panels, FI Gauges, PFC controls, converted motorized TQ (SIOC), Weber seats

blueskydriver

Right on Fred, it's even hard for me to look at them because I have the room and they're right next door in Minnesota! Any other time!!!

John
| FSX | FDS-MIP OVRHD SYS CARDS FC1| PM | PMDG 737-700 | UTX | GEX | UT7 | ASE | REX2 | AES | TSR | IS | TOPCAT | AvilaSoft EFB | OC CARDS & OVRHD GAUGES| SIMKITS | SW 3D Lights | FS2CREW2010 | FSXPassengers | Flight1 AE | MATROX TH2GO-D | NTHUSIM | 3-Mits EW230Ust Proj |

Like the Website ?
Support Cockpitbuilders.com and Click Below to Donate