# Poor Boy Airspeed Indicator

Discussion in 'Instruments / Avionics / Electrical System' started by Geek1945, Feb 23, 2014.

### Help Support HomeBuiltAirplanes Forum by donating:

Tags:
1. Feb 23, 2014

### Geek1945

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Aug 14, 2013
Messages:
144
34
Location:
Erath County TX 76462
cheapracer likes this.
2. Feb 23, 2014

### Doggzilla

#### Well-Known MemberHBA Supporter

Joined:
Jun 2, 2013
Messages:
1,963
413
Location:
Everywhere USA
Used one of these on a hang glider, I guess they work alright. Funny how they are in mph, but as far as I saw, they all are.

3. Feb 24, 2014

### Aerowerx

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Dec 1, 2011
Messages:
5,079
1,388
Location:
Marion, Ohio
The cheapest would be to have none at all.

IIRC, all the Wright brothers had on their early planes was a AoA (or was it slip?) indicator.

I remember reading in the AOPA magazine about a school in Wisconsin where they teach you to fly a J-3 Cub. For the final lesson they cover up all the instruments and you have to fly by sound and feel.

4. Feb 24, 2014

### cluttonfred

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Feb 13, 2010
Messages:
6,436
2,286
Location:
World traveler
You could make your own with some aluminum or steel sheet and piano wire, calibrated by holding it out the window on a stick while driving down the highway. This one is actually from a certified DH Tiger Moth.

Chlomo, dcstrng and cheapracer like this.
5. Feb 24, 2014

### cheapracer

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Sep 8, 2013
Messages:
5,475
3,831
Location:
Australian
Interesting, I not more than a few minutes ago posted this eleswhere ...

"There's a case for planes (or cars or especially boats) being so expensive that people justify going to further expense to maintain an equal level of fitment throughout and that if the base price is cheap then the fitout will also be cheaper, win win".

Could you imagine a new Sirrius/Lancair etc with these instruments!
:gig:

6. Feb 24, 2014

### Aviator168

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Sep 21, 2012
Messages:
2,205
249
Location:
Brookville, NY. USA
$25 ~$50 is all you have spend for sensors to send the info to a tablet or a smart for display. For that money. You will probably be able to get your six-pack.

7. Feb 24, 2014

### cluttonfred

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Feb 13, 2010
Messages:
6,436
2,286
Location:
World traveler
Really?!? Can you provide a source for this? I find that very, very hard to believe even if that's a price per sensor. Remember flight instrument six-pack is defined included airspeed indicator, attitude indicator, altimeter, turn coordinator, heading indicator and vertical speed indicator. Personally, I'd be happy if it were that simple and easy and inexpensive to get just a minimum VFR package like airspeed, altimeter, compass, tachometer, fuel gauge and oil pressure/temperature.

bmcj likes this.
8. Feb 24, 2014

### Pops

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Jan 1, 2013
Messages:
7,221
6,113
Location:
USA.
My flight instructor had been an instructor since 1937 and also a sailplane instructor. I had to fly with a sheet over the instrument panel and do spot landings. The only instrument you were allowed to see was the oil pressure gauge. Dan

ultralajt and bmcj like this.
9. Feb 25, 2014

### Aerowerx

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Dec 1, 2011
Messages:
5,079
1,388
Location:
Marion, Ohio
I remember seeing something about hacking a Gameboy (or was it a Nintendo?) for an airspeed indicator.

I know I saved the link in my favorites, and also posted something here about it, but I can't find either one.

All I remember is that it used some external pressure sensors with open source software on the 'game'. If you do it yourself (or know someone who knows electronics) you could easily do it for under $50, except maybe for the game itself. The only other thing I remember was that it was intended for use on a hang glider, but I don't know why it could not be used on an ultralight or small LSA. 10. Feb 25, 2014 ### Aviator168 ### Aviator168 #### Well-Known Member Joined: Sep 21, 2012 Messages: 2,205 Likes Received: 249 Location: Brookville, NY. USA Pressure sensor --- 2SMPP-02 - OMRON ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS 2SMPP-02 - PRESSURE SENSOR, 37KPA, 1, 2.6MM | Newark element14 US Digital Barometer --- MPL115A1T1 Freescale Semiconductor | Mouser 6 DOF digital gyro --- 6DOF MPU 6050 Module 3 Axis Gyroscope Accelerometer Module for Arduino MPU 6050 | eBay Aerowerx likes this. 11. Feb 25, 2014 ### Aerowerx ### Aerowerx #### Well-Known Member Joined: Dec 1, 2011 Messages: 5,079 Likes Received: 1,388 Location: Marion, Ohio [Sorry...For some reason it said that I had not 'saved' this, so I did it. Then found out that it had done it the first time.] I remember seeing something about hacking a Gameboy (or was it a Nintendo?) for an airspeed indicator. I know I saved the link in my favorites, and also posted something here about it, but I can't find either one. All I remember is that it used some external pressure sensors with open source software on the 'game'. If you do it yourself (or know someone who knows electronics) you could easily do it for under$50, except maybe for the game itself. The only other thing I remember was that it was intended for use on a hang glider, but I don't know why it could not be used on an ultralight or small LSA.

Last edited: Feb 25, 2014
12. Feb 25, 2014

### Aerowerx

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Dec 1, 2011
Messages:
5,079
1,388
Location:
Marion, Ohio
13. Feb 25, 2014

### Aviator168

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Sep 21, 2012
Messages:
2,205
249
Location:
Brookville, NY. USA
You don't even have to. Except for the IAS. You can get the rest (including ground speed) from an app on a smart phone. Some smart phones like the Samsung S3 even have gyroscope built in. The GPS will give you altitude, ground speed, v-speed and coordinates. The down accelerometer will give turn coordinator, and the builtin compass gives direction.

Note. Altitude, ground speed, v-speed from GPS are not instantaneous. It would be much better to use a pressure sensor to get those readings.

No need to buy that. That chip is in some smart phones. My Samsung S3 has it. Just need to write a simple android app to read and display.

14. Feb 25, 2014

### Geek1945

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Aug 14, 2013
Messages:
144
34
Location:
Erath County TX 76462
Thanks guys, I believe in using KISS technology rather than $200+ airspeed indicators. Why because most aircraft, boats, motorcycles, etc hardly ever met users usage expectations. 100 hrs of flight time is a lot more than new weekend warrior pilots think. Look at most GA airports, plenty of planes aging away in hangers or shading tarmac/grass. So why invest in expensive dashboards for leisure entertainment? As some have replied most instruments are rarely used especially for flying around on weekends. I compare it to having a similar instruments on a riding mower. Of course if they make you feel safer or confident mowing grass go for it! I often wonder why builders don't consider strain gauges on important structures, maybe because there all important. Ed 15. Feb 25, 2014 ### Aviator168 ### Aviator168 #### Well-Known Member Joined: Sep 21, 2012 Messages: 2,205 Likes Received: 249 Location: Brookville, NY. USA I do like to have a torque meter between the engine and the prop. It is expensive indeed. KISS technology is as good as those expensive ones. Have you look inside one of those glass panel instruments? You will find those exact same chips. The difference is their circuit boards are built better. However, you can get the same safety factors by using a few cheap controllers. Why spend a few thousands if you can get 3 cheap ones for a$500.

16. Feb 25, 2014

### cluttonfred

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Feb 13, 2010
Messages:
6,436
2,286
Location:
World traveler
Aviator168, do you have a link or another example to show someone actually using these types of sensors in an aircraft?

17. Feb 25, 2014

### SpainCub

#### Well-Known Member

Joined:
Nov 27, 2012
Messages:
374
56
Location:
Dynon Avionics - Home

18. Feb 25, 2014

Joined:
Feb 13, 2010
Messages:
6,436