LifeOn2 Development – Force Feedback Wheel Controller Demonstration.
After a number of months of research, planning and implementation LifeOn2 Development is happy to present the results of his latest project: implementation of a FFB wheel controller.
The controller is built around an ARM 32 bit RISC processor, the Cortex M3. The M3 has a wealth of peripherals, including an USB 2.0 interface, which he has programmed to communicate with a PC host.
The LifeOn2 Development plan has been to use a high performance type servo motor also for this initial FFB controller prototype, but as sourcing of a servo motor with the specifications he wanted has been an issue, He decided to use a brushed DC motor instead. It will drive a proper servo motor going forward.
The status of the project now is that LifeOn2 Development has a FFB controller capable of driving a brushed DC motor (the FFB) and reading of a rotary encoder for steering wheel position.
LifeOn2 Development has furthermore implemented USB communication between the FFB controller and the PC, and the FFB controller presents itself to the PC as a FFB device.
The drawback of using the USB-IF specification is however that the specification and its communication protocol is quite complex and has too many features not used in an FFB simulator steering wheel.
Here is a screenshot of the FFB controller (wheel) attached in Windows 7:
The FFB controller is capable of receiving FFB commands at 1000 Hz, and it can report wheel position to the PC at 500 Hz. I plan to increase that to 1000 Hz too though.
On top of this article is a video of the FFB controller connected to the brushed DC motor and rotary encoder and used as a FFB wheel in iRacing.
As you can see, LifeOn2 Development has not bothered to attach any gearing and other devices (belts etc) to create a proper wheel, but the important stuff is all there. Gearing and other mechanical stuff are the easy parts.. So he says …
|Article submitted by LifeOn2 Development|