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Cheap PPM adapter for simulators

Epitaph

Ebil Filleh Pega-Bat ^.^
Mentor
#1
Hi there everyone, hope those at FTFF are having a good time!

I didn't know if to post this in this section or in the flight simulator one, as it concerns both... if his monkeyfullness deems this better in the other section, so be it heheheh

I was getting fed up of having the simulator cable hanging from my transmitter every time I wanted to use it with the simulator. My transmitter has the option of connecting for a simulator via the trainer port or via USB, both of which are not very comfortable to have for a pincher, and in general I'm not a lover of having wires everywhere anyway. The trainer port dongle I have is one of those cheap $5 ones you can get off the internet from almost anywhere, and eventhough the computer just detects it as a generic joystick, it works well with PhoenixRC 4.0 with a joystick patch I have.

So there i was, thinking "if this dongle connects to the trainer port, the trainer port outputs PPM, and I even have to set it up as PPM out in the protocol menu of my transmitter (Deviation on Devo 7E), then I see no reason it shouldn't work with a PPM out receiver...". So I opened up the dongle and removed the original 2 wire cable from it which is PPM in and GND, then took a servo pigtail and connected the central red wire to the +5V pin directly on the USB port, the brown (on a Futaba cable it would be black) GND wire to the direct USB GND pin, and the yellow (on a Futaba cable it would be white) signal wire to the PPM in point on the circuit where the original cable of the dongle used to be. Then just close up the dongle with the pigtail hanging out.

DSCN2283.JPG

Then came the receiver part... I had the insides of a broken Orange R615X DSMX 6 channel receiver, which had the traces of a couple of the channels damaged. The PPM out of this receiver is the bind port, so I just fixed that trace, removed one of the 2 antennas as I didn't need range at all (not when sitting a couple of feet away), bound the receiver to the transmitter on a previously created model (for this I had to make a cable that fed battery positive to the middle pin, and negative to both the negative and signal pins at the same time, as I didn't have anywhere else to plug the battery into whilst the bind plug was being used... basically an all in one battery feed and bind plug), then once it was bound, just test it out on the dongle.

DSCN2284.JPG

I set all the switches on the model I created on the transmitter to have all 6 channels available, then just set dual rates separately within the model so as not to use a channel on the simulator just for this, set the transmitting power nice and low as I don't need range, 3mW so as to not use much battery, then plugged the dongle into the computer, and the receiver lit up to show it was both receiving power and was connected with the transmitter. Then just open up the joystick configuration window in Windows and I saw how all 6 channels were working perfectly. So it was just a case of calibrating in that window, then starting up the simulator, to find everything working absolutely perfect!!

Once I saw everything was working great, just make a couple of slits in the dongle case to put a ziptie through so brace the receiver directly to the dongle so as to leave it nice and clean and compact.

DSCN2286.JPG

This seems to work with any receiver that has PPM out, so if you use it with a receiver with more than 6 channels you should get all of them available. Total cost of the build, well that was $5 for a cheap dongle, and the OrangeRX receiver I got when it was on offer for $5, so it cost me $10 in total, but receivers are nice and cheap even when not on offer, so it's a nice cheap alternative to having a wired simulator.
 
#2
Very cool, I'm very tempted to try this myself, I too hate cables,
I mean you have this wireless transmitter in your hands why do you need a cable!
The dongle I have is one of the ones with a switch on it so you can use it
on different simulators, but I cant see why it wont work.
How can you tell if you receiver has PPM out?
 

Epitaph

Ebil Filleh Pega-Bat ^.^
Mentor
#3
Usually it will come on the specs of the receiver. If you tell me what receiver it is you have in mind of trying I can have a quick look
 
#6
I have a Flysky i6, with bothe flysky and turnigy ai6 receivers, I was fiddling with the transmitter
today and I noticed a setting on it to turn PPM output on on the receiver,
so hopefully that will work, unless that's only on the larger telemetry version
of receiver with i-bus, I have both types so will order another dongle and try it out :)
 

Epitaph

Ebil Filleh Pega-Bat ^.^
Mentor
#7
The PPM output on the transmitter doesn't have anything to do with output on the receiver as far as I know... I think it's just to activate the trainer port PPM output to use transmition modules via this port or for the USB dongle via cable. My internet is going really bad at the moment, once it comes back on alright, I'll have a look at which Flysky protocol receivers use PPM out.

To give you an idea, it is the receivers that you would use on multirotors and connect to the flight control board via a single pigtail, rather than one per channel.
 

Epitaph

Ebil Filleh Pega-Bat ^.^
Mentor
#8
From what I can see, the Flysky receivers don't have PPM output unfortunately. But Jhitesma seems to have made a project in the past to address this issue if you want to read up on it here

The only other thing I can think of is using a module to change the protocol to something like the FrSky one or the DSMX one which do have PPM receivers available
 

pressalltheknobs

Posted a thousand or more times
#9
I think some of the iA series Flysky receivers do have PPM. I've read things that claim the iA6B V2 Receiver supports it and you have to enable it through the transmitter. You have to have a recent firmware version on your i6 transmitter to see the PPM setting. I don't know what channel you use for PPM on the receiver. Certainly possible it is turned on remotely maybe as part of the binding process but information is hard to come by. I haven't found a manual or anything definitive.
 
#10
hi all...
flysky and turnigy ia6b and ia10 recievers support ppm output ,yes it needs to be enabled in the rx setup menu on the i6 transmitter .
on the ia6b ppm output is on channel 1,i presume the ia10 will be the same.
 
#11
I've got the ai6b is the ppm definitely on CH1 Daxian I thought it might have bee the I-bus socket,
I have Fs-i6 with recent firmware, so I've got the PPM receiver out option,
I'm defiantly going to try this mod but will order another ai6b and dongle first in case I ruin them :)
 
#12
Ignore that ive just got off my back side and looked at my receiver it clearly states PPM CH1 lol
I think I will modify my dongle by keeping the original cable as well as adding the futaba/jr socket.
best of both worlds, will post results hopefully it will work ok
 
Last edited:
#13
Couldn't wait, I've done it with a Flysky FS-iA6B receiver, set the transmitter to rx/ppm on,
you can even bind the receiver while plugged into the usb port.
I've basically follow the method devised here, I popped the dongle case open,
I have the one off eBay that you can switch to use different sims, I kept the standard jack in place,
Used a multimeter to make sure I was attaching wires to the correct places,
Ground went to the USB socket as did the positive wire, the signal wire I soldered
to the point on the circuit board where the jack plug signal attaches to.
Tested with RealFlight 7.5 works 100%
Thanks Epitaph for your inspiration :) No more cables!!
PpmMod.jpg
 

Epitaph

Ebil Filleh Pega-Bat ^.^
Mentor
#14
Great to hear you got it working good!! As for the binding with the USB, you could with that receiver, but I couldn't with my OrangeRX receiver because the PPM out port of the receiver IS the bind plug, so you can't plug a bind plug and the USB in at the same time. But I am very glad you managed to get it sorted out for your particular application, now just have fun!! :D