The left hand pilot panel of the beech baron 58 aircraft consists of the so-called six-pack. I extended this configuration by a Radar Altitude indicator (RA), so we finally have at pilot side eight gauges and I call it my 'eight-pack':
- Vertical Speed Indicator (VS)
- Air Speed Indicator (AS)
- Turn Coordinator
- Attitude Indicator
- Horizontal Situation Indicator (HSI)
- Radio Magnetic Indicator (RMI)
- Radar Altitude Indicator (RA)
In the virtual cockpit there is also an Instrument Air indicator, which shows the current vacuum pressure in the gyroscopic instuments, like the Attitude indicator and the Horizontal Situation Indicator. However it was not considered mandatory to implement this 'Instrument Air' indicator, because my implemented indicators are working with the standard environmental pressure.
The above mentioned gauges were built up by using step motors, servos, rotation encoders, micro-controllers, photo-interrupters, 3D printed parts, printed scales, thousands of lines of software code and of course some 'few' hours of spare time. If I remember correctly, it took about 1.5 years to complete these instruments. This is also because some instruments had to be built twice, one for the pilot panel and one for the co-pilot panel.
Some of the gauges are straight forward, because they only have one needle and hence only one step motor. The next more complex gauges are the ones with 2 or even 3 needles, which consequently require some additional mechanical parts like gears. But the most complex gauges were the Attitude indicator followed by the beast of the Horizontal Situation Indicator, which almost drove me crazy. Nevertheless, I finished all, sometimes twice, because the copilot also wants to fly sometimes. In the section 'Pilot Gauges' I give a short overview of the internal design and functionallity of these gauges. A more detailed description of the gauges can be found here.