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Old Aug 24, 2014, 08:29 AM
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Larry Dudeck's Avatar
Williamsville, NY, USA
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Flight sim for a 5 year old

Ben, my 5 yo grandson, is fascinated by air craft.

Are there any simple, easy to use, sims that he might be able to use?

I seem to remember a free sim (FS...perhaps?) that I downloaded from the web, used a regular 4 ch. FM radio for control. I did have to buy a cable that plugged into the trainer port on the back of the radio, the other end was a USB connection to the PC. Still have the cable but my current PC runs on WINDOWS 7
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Old Aug 24, 2014, 02:40 PM
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Staffs, UK
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You're probably thinking of FMS which is more than slightly out of date these days and can be tricky to get running on modern PCs.

A better bet is RCDeskPilot http://rcdeskpilot.com/ which will use the same cable and TX but is better looking, simple to use and easier to get running on Windows 7. There are a few others but I'd start there.

Steve
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Old Aug 24, 2014, 10:04 PM
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Slipstick,

Thank you for the link.

You are correct when you said this is better looking than the FMS sim.

I've downloaded the sim but can only "fly" the model using the numeric key pad. So far I have been unable to get my Futaba T6XA 6 ch 72 MHz radio to work. Obviously I would want Ben to use the same radio with the sim as he would with a real model

Any ideas on that? I'll contact the authors and see what they advise.

Thank you again.
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Old Aug 25, 2014, 03:50 AM
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The TX needs to have a battery in, be fully charged and switched on. It's also a good idea to remove the crystal which will prevent it from transmitting RF and makes the battery last a lot longer.

Is the USB cable recognised by the PC when you plug it in ? It's worth calibrating it in Windows/Control Panel/Game Controllers (under Devices and Printers). You should see a controller called "PPM" or something similar and the TX should work it. You also need to calibrate in RCDeskPilot using Menu/Controls, choose the controller (PPM again) and set the channels correctly.

Steve
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Old Aug 26, 2014, 08:53 AM
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Steve,

No joy on this. I get a message saying the device is not recognized.

The same radio and adaptor cable worked with Windows XP and FMS.

Maybe the thing for me to do is buy a "trainer cord" and connect my two Futaba radios. Then just take an old foamy I have lying around and let Ben try his luck with that.

I'm guessing the crystal should be removed from the slave radio. Any advise on flying this way?
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Old Aug 26, 2014, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Dudeck View Post
No joy on this. I get a message saying the device is not recognized.
When do you get that message ? I've never known a USB cable that won't work on Windows 7 if it has ever worked...but I suppose you may have the first.

But there's nothing wrong with getting out in the open air and trying some real flying with a trainer cord. Yes you can take the crystal out of the slave. The only trick I've found to flying that way it to try to keep an eye where the throttle is on the slave so you don't get a huge change when you have to take over (which with a 5-year old could be any time, generally their attention span isn't very long ).

Steve
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Old Aug 28, 2014, 11:13 AM
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Part of the problem was the USB ports on the front of the PC are a bit dodgey, sometimes working, other times not.

Using a USB port on the back of the PC did the trick. The PC found a driver and now says the device is working. But the device does not show up on the screen which shows the DVD drive, flash drives, etc.

Also, the flight sim in the control settings/controller does not show the radio either.

Could it be due to the age difference between the radio (10+ years) and the flight sim?
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Old Aug 28, 2014, 12:26 PM
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The USB controller isn't supposed to show up in the File Explorer where the hard drives, DVD drives etc. are because that only shows storage devices.

It should show up in Control Panel/Game Controllers as I said earlier (click on the Start button and enter Game Controller in the "Search programs...." box and select "Set up USB Game Controllers") . Both in there and in the sim you should see something called "PPM". You won't see anything happening until the TX is plugged in and switched on.

Any problem is unlikely to be age because RC Desk Pilot is fine with my USB interface and a Futaba Skysport 6 and JR Max 66, both of which are about 20 years old .

Steve
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Old Aug 29, 2014, 11:46 AM
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Steve,

The "installed game controller" field just has the word "controller" in it, nothing else and no options.

When I click on "advanced", the "preferred device" field indicates "none". No other options available.

From "control panel/devices and printers" I see a "MHW USB" controller. When I right click on the icon I get

Game controller settings
Create shortcut
Trouble shoot
Properties

"Game controller settings" same as above

"Properties" takes me through a series of steps, one of which indicates the device is working properly. Other steps identify the driver version, etc., etc

"Trouble shoot" says "can't identify problem" and finally suggests I contact "Steve" in the UK.
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Old Aug 29, 2014, 12:12 PM
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Larry, I think you've now defeated me. I've never seen a USB controller called MHW anything or one that doesn't show up in the Game Controller list and I've run out of ideas. Sorry for wasting your time.

Steve
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Old Aug 30, 2014, 08:43 AM
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Steve,

I don't think you wasted any of my time. If anyone is guilty of wasting another's time, it was me wasting yours.

I do thank you for all your assistance.

Kind regards
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Old Sep 09, 2014, 08:20 AM
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After an unsuccessful attempt at getting the RCDeskpilot sim to work with anything other than the numerical keypad and having my questions to them unanswered, I uninstalled the sim.

Still wanting a flight sim for 5 yo Ben, I downloaded the FMS sim to an old PC that is running Windows XP. Still no joy using a Futaba transmitter but it does work very well with an old joy stick type controller.

As it turns out, using the joy stick is far more intuitive than the transmitter is as Ben immediately understood how to use it.

I do limit him to only 15 minutes on the sim and then it's on to other activities.
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Old Sep 10, 2014, 10:53 AM
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You can also try PicaSim. It should work with the transmitter and joystick under Windows, and also under Android/iOS if you've got a smart phone/tablet...

It's more glider-orientated, which may or may not be a good thing!
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