This very nearly did not happen! I soon realised that I could not make a replacement unit to replace the Saitek throttle unit. This was because I wanted to use high-quality pots. It meant a complete redesign and thought it was not worth my time as I want to move on and produce my own motorised throttle unit. Then one of my Patreons asked me to complete this. So the challenge was on.
For those that have a Saitek throttle unit, the first problem you will realize is that they feel flimsy and there is no adjustable friction to hold the throttle levers where you leave them. This is what i cam up with:
This worked surprising well holding the throttle in any position, but it felt a bit too slippery. I then had the idea to apply hot glue to the friction plate and reduce the size of the shoe. This nailed it. With very little pressure applied to the friction shoe adjustment screw, the throttles could be made to physically stop moving until a huge force was applied!
The next step was to remove all those little screws that had to be assembled in a certain order! Tie rods were the solution and I used qty 4, 6mm ones. This made assembly much easier, simpler and sturdier. The assembly now becomes in a logical order.
In the above image, you can also see that the wiring (in red) is now routed through the throttle handle into the throttle stem and out to the joystick card. A much tidier solution. The friction shoes can be easily adjusted by maintenance holes in the rear section. Each of the levers are attached to there own dedicated mounting brackets. These are now all labelled with 3d printed text to help identify the parts as they are all different!
Because we are longer restricted to the Saitek throttle unit, I have moved the speed brake to the side. It now has various detents that can be felt when moving the lever to make sure you can positively move it to the correct position.
This is the new solution. Personally, I love it! There was a lot of criticism over version 2. To address these issues, I have come up with the following:
A build list with part numbers will be included from the start! BUT NOT LINKS! they go out of date too quickly.
The design will not be included, but just STL files. I'm sorry for not completing this straight away. My idea was that you could then adjust the design to suit your needs. But I realised people just want to press print a go! Consider it done.
A print guide for each component will be included, showing the orientation of print and print settings.
I also wanted to point out that when printing, slower is better and a smaller nozzle has much better results. For printing text, nothing beats switching to a 0.2mm nozzle. Im now running two 3d printers 24hours a day for prototyping. Im trying to remove all the errors and mistake before you guys get your heavy hands on them! Making them indestructible isn't really an option, but stronger is better.
I am now printing the throttle body, be warned. It's a massive 27 hours! That sucks and I know it! But let's be honest, it will give you a dedicated 737 throttle unit produced by your own hands and much cheaper than buying a prebought solution.
On to costs, as always free to my Patreons and thank you, guys! This is not a modification like mod 1 & 2. This is a complete redesign removing the Saitek throttle unit. This will be a new item and will not be covered by those who purchased version 1 & 2 to which I apologise.
Here's a sneak peek of version 3 so far!
There may be one more modification before going to print lol. That will be the addition of trim wheels manually adjusted via a 10 turn pot. The problem here lies with the cost. We have used all the channels on the Leo Bodnar card at £24. To introduce the trim wheels would require another board at £24. What is the verdict? Would this be something you would like to see on this mod?
Take care guys,