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Using small RC hobby servos can be a quick and easy way to create most of mechanical instruments/gauges for your home cockpit. The only drawback can be that servos have some noise and quite small range of shaft rotation (typical 180°) which can be easily increased by adding a step-up gear. As for noise, you can find the servos with minimal noise, besides, if the gauge is intended to show some slow-changing value the noise will be negligible.

How to Connect

In current versions of SimVimCockpit you can control servos using additional SimVimServo controller board. One Uno or Nano Arduino board is used, with special SimVimServo control firmware onboard (that you can upload from the SimVim plugin menu).

This "slave" board is connected with the Master controller board, getting data intendent for the steppers. The internal code of the slave board generates correct control pulses width for positioning multiple servos.

  • Every servo in SimVimCockpit is connected to one of the output pin available on the slave board starting from #2.
  • You can connect up to 18 servos to the slave Servo board:

The "slave" controller board (Uno, Nano) is linked with the Master controller board using serial interface, when Tx output signal of one board is connected to the Rx iput of another board.

For the slave output control the Tx1,Rx1 port are used in SimVim. So, you should always connect the Tx pin (#1) of the slave board with Rx1 pin (#19) of the master board, and "slave" Rx (pin 0) - with the "master" Tx1 (pin #18).

Note 1. Never forget to connect the GNDs of each board ( and other devices as well) to the common GND wire.

Note 2: When you need to upload Servo control firmware to the slave board you need to disconnect the Rx,Tx wires before uploading! To simplify this you simply can add a "shut-off" switch breaking this two wires.

Another option - you can leave the Rx/Tx connected, but press the Reset button on the master board and hold it while uploading stepper firmware to the slave board.

The slave board receives all data from the master controller board only. So, don't keep it connected to USB port after the SimVimStepper firmware upload. You can use any +5V source connected to the slave board using USB connector, or +5V pin.

Servo powering

Servo gauges Configuration

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