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notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #76 

I haven't updated this thread for awhile, even though I haven't stopped working on it. Here is a video that was taken after last weeks game.

Shows the front console painted, slider controls integrated into helm station, DMX lighting and simple walls.



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William

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Reply with quote  #77 
Your bridges looking fantastic you've overcome a lot of hurdles. I watch the video three or four times just so I could get a close-up look at your consuls. 

So this is the video guy side of things just so I can see better images. I'd love to see angles of the your bridge shot from a tripod. unfortunately the low light and the movement create noise and compression amplifies that noise. Movement and low-level light is not your friend so if you eliminate the bumps the image will remain clear. 


Highlighted close-ups would also be appreciated along with a verbal description of that element,  parts what it took to build, basically a tour. Example the Chase lights on the mainstream. 




notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #78 

Quote:
Originally Posted by William
Your bridges looking fantastic you've overcome a lot of hurdles. I watch the video three or four times just so I could get a close-up look at your consuls. 

So this is the video guy side of things just so I can see better images. I'd love to see angles of the your bridge shot from a tripod. unfortunately the low light and the movement create noise and compression amplifies that noise. Movement and low-level light is not your friend so if you eliminate the bumps the image will remain clear. 


Highlighted close-ups would also be appreciated along with a verbal description of that element,  parts what it took to build, basically a tour. Example the Chase lights on the mainstream. 


Thank you! It has been a labor of love for sure. I am fortunate to have a group of players that enjoy playing the game as well to keep me motivated.

All of that is true, though there are reasons for it.  One of the reasons I have been updating this thread much is, honestly, I haven't been very happy with my progress up until this point. At Armada 1 the build just seemed to come together and be where I wanted it to be by the time the con happened. This year at Armada 2, nothing seemed to come together and I was pretty disappointed by how it all looked when I got to the con.

(behind the guys in blue)

Bridge image.jpg 

This is really the only photo that was taken of it at Armada 2. It was somewhat underwhelming considering the effort that I put in to get it to that point. I ran out of time to finish all the custom controls I wanted to make, my DMX controller burned out on me, the controls I did have were buggy, the paint didn't come out right and the walls were just meh. We had fun and it did its job, put it just wasn't were I wanted it to be.

Since then I have (finally) gotten the DMX lighting in a good place, the controls are working correctly, the paint on the console looks good and I have some temporary walls that I like (I really like the light color over the dark). This basically all came together last week and this was me going "we have to record this!" and then plastering the video everywhere because I finally have something to show off [biggrin]

There also hasn't really been any real physical changes to the consoles. The Engineering console has had some minor structural fixes done to it, but none that are really noticeable externally. The platform the Engineering console and captains chair sit on is the same and the two side stations are pretty much the same except that the laptops have been replaced with monitors.
The front consoles have been updated, but the design hasn't changed from the images on the previous page, its just been painted the same grey as the rest of the console and the tops have been sprayed with Plastidip to give it a flat black appearance.

The walls I have are made with a wooden frame made of 1x1" boards with some white fabric drop cloths I bought from Home Depot for <$8 staple gunned to them.


Since you weren't the first to ask about the lights, I went ahead a put a thread up about it here:

 https://artemis.forumchitchat.com/post/cheap-and-easy-diffused-light-for-dmx-8183337?pid=1292881592#post1292881592

You can read about how I built my USB interface here:
https://artemis.forumchitchat.com/post/cheap-usb-interface-and-dmx-led-strip-build-7833577?&trail=15

You can read about making your DMX setup modular here:
https://artemis.forumchitchat.com/post/howto-modular-smartdumb-dmx-using-cat5-cable-8116278?pid=1292310758

 



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ryleyra

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Reply with quote  #79 
The Snackbar Mark II looks like a definite improvement. [biggrin] I love the black color scheme, but to quote Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy, "Every time you try and operate these weird black controls that are labeled in black on a black background, a little black light lights up in black to let you know you’ve done it."

In other words, while I'm sure the controls look awesome, they didn't show up very well in the video. And I was looking forward to seeing the sliders. [biggrin] The running lights on the mainscreen looked amazingly cool.

Still a great job, though, and I'm sorry it wasn't done in time for Armada II.
notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #80 


Quote:
Originally Posted by ryleyra
In other words, while I'm sure the controls look awesome, they didn't show up very well in the video. And I was looking forward to seeing the sliders. [biggrin] The running lights on the mainscreen looked amazingly cool.

Still a great job, though, and I'm sorry it wasn't done in time for Armada II.



Im really happy to have gotten something solid with the DMX. I will continue to add more lights in the future as I develop the walls.

there really isn't much to see with the controls yet. No fancy customs going on, just basic stuff to make the ship easier to control.

Here are the sliders:


sliders.jpg 
Just two slits cut into the wood so they can move up and down. On the right is the joystick, numberpad and a trackball. None of it is supposed to look cool really, just little things so we don't have to use a keyboard.

All the weapons console has is a mouse and a keypad in the top right corner. I put a lot of blank space in there for controls later, just haven't done much with it yet.

If you guys want specific pictures, let me know and Ill do what I can.




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janx

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Reply with quote  #81 
those sliders are really hard to see, but I think you basically just got them installed.

I would paint the slider knobs something contrasting with the black.  Maybe a metallic color.  I'd also draw a bright rectangle border around the slider mechanism (like a primary color), that highlights the control and it's span of movement.  This may also give you context to then put a label (same color) above/below the rectangle to indicate what the control does (like "Thrust")

I think framing each physical control you added with a rectangle outline will give the eye something to snap to.
davekp

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Reply with quote  #82 
Hey notsabbat, I have a question if you don't mind.  I'm making a tube type light, as you did a while back in this thread.  I'm using a florescent light protector for the tube, using was paper on the inside to diffuse the light.

The problem I'm facing is that even with the wax paper you can easily see the individual LEDs...so the light isn't really all that diffused.

I'm going to try putting crinkled up aluminum foil inside the tube to make multiple reflections of the LEDs and maybe make it more diffuse.  Not sure that'll work, but I'll give it a try.

Meanwhile, I was hoping that you might have some suggestions that might work.  Thoughts?


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notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #83 
yup, just use multiple layers of wax paper. I folded the wax paper width into thirds and then used it. the led lights that I used in the small lights were spaced further apart than in the long ones, so I ended up using about 6 layers to diffuse it to the point where I could no longer see the leds. the long tubes I used (florescent light protectors) had led strips where the leds were much closer together, so I only needed to use three layers. just keep adding layers till you like the level of difusement.

there are actual diffuser sheets that you can purchase, but using wax paper was a cheap way for me to get the job done.


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davekp

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Reply with quote  #84 
I'll give that a try.  My tube is about a yard long and I have a 12 foot LED strip.  So the strip is folded back and forth 4 times.  That helps a bit.  I'll add more layers of was paper as you suggest.

Thanks!


... You know, aside from playing Artemis, this stuff is kind of fun! 

--- edit ---

Tried the crumpled up foil.  Nope.  Next is more wax paper.  After that I'll try putting some kind of rod in the center and wrapping the LED strip around that to get a more even distribution.



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notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #85 

wanted to do a small update.
I recently added eight eight foot long ceiling lights to the bridge arranged like spokes of a wheel. They are made from fluorescent light tubes with wax paper diffuser, just like the wall lights I did a write up on in the past, just longer. The write up is here.

http:// https://artemis.forumchitchat.com/post/cheap-and-easy-diffused-light-for-dmx-8183337?pid=1292881592#post1292881592

Here is a quick video that shows the effect the lights have on the bridge. It also shows the fighter console I have been working on.

Since I have been asked for something that shows my bridge set up in a little more detail, I made this video as well. Sorry if some of the stuff doesn't make sense, I was pretty tired when I made it. Specifically there is a part at 2:15 where I am talking about the keypad on the Helm console; for some reason I say that the keypad if for using a touchscreen, it is used for flying jump ships, the only touchscreen I have on my ship is the Engineering console. I will also apologize for the excessive use of "kind of"...



I also wanted to do a write up on using Arduino Leonardo for custom buttons and controls, but I never got enough into it to really have much to say, however the sliders have been very popular with the people doing helm and so I thought I would throw up a mini post about what I did to make them.


I used an Arduino Leonardo (which is an Arduino board specifically designed to emulate keyboards, mice and joysticks) that I bought off of Ebay for about $12

A000057_sml.jpg 

and two RoboTale Slide Potentiometers that I also got off of ebay for a few dollars.
sku_283648_4.jpg 

I connected them using these male/female "Dupont Wires" that I also got on ebay for a couple of dollars.
sku_146935_1.jpg 

Here is a wiring diagram to attack the Potentiometer to the Arduino, I used A0 and A1 as my inputs. You will also notice that there is only one 5V port, I solved this by making a Y adapter out of two dupont wires.
Robotale-Slide-Pot-Arduino-Tutorial.png 

And here is the code that I used (there may be better ways to do it, but the code works):

//Code starts here

#include "Joystick.h"
int lastPotentiometerOneValue = 0;
int lastPotentiometerTwoValue = 0;

void setup() {
  // initialize serial communication at 57600 bits per second:
  Serial.begin(9600);
  Joystick.begin();
}

void loop() {
  delay(10);
  readAndSendPotentiometerDataIfChanged();
}

void readAndSendPotentiometerDataIfChanged(void) {

  //Potentiometer One
  int newPotentiometerOneValue = analogRead(A0);   
  if (newPotentiometerOneValue != lastPotentiometerOneValue) {
      Serial.print("!pos1");
      Serial.print(newPotentiometerOneValue);
      Serial.print(";");
      lastPotentiometerOneValue = newPotentiometerOneValue;
  }

  //Potentiometer Two
  int newPotentiometerTwoValue = analogRead(A1);
  if (newPotentiometerTwoValue != lastPotentiometerTwoValue) {
      Serial.print("!pos2");
      Serial.print(newPotentiometerTwoValue);
      Serial.print(";");
      lastPotentiometerTwoValue = newPotentiometerTwoValue;
  }

 // WARP CONTROLS......................

// Warp 4 (presses button 4)
   if (newPotentiometerOneValue == 0 && newPotentiometerOneValue <=15) {
     Joystick.releaseButton(0);
     Joystick.releaseButton(1);
     Joystick.releaseButton(2);
     Joystick.pressButton(3);
   }

// Warp 3 (presses button 3)
   if (newPotentiometerOneValue > 15 && newPotentiometerOneValue < 200) {
   Joystick.releaseButton(0);
   Joystick.releaseButton(1);
  Joystick.releaseButton(3);
     Joystick.pressButton(2);
   }

// Warp 2 (presses button 2)
   if (newPotentiometerOneValue >= 200 && newPotentiometerOneValue < 900) {
    Joystick.releaseButton(0);
    Joystick.releaseButton(2);
    Joystick.releaseButton(3);
     Joystick.pressButton(1);
   }
   
  // Warp 1 (presses button 1)
   if (newPotentiometerOneValue >= 900 &&newPotentiometerOneValue < 1023) {
     Joystick.releaseButton(1);
     Joystick.releaseButton(2);
     Joystick.releaseButton(3);
     Joystick.pressButton(0);
   }
   
  if (newPotentiometerOneValue == 1023) {
     Joystick.releaseButton(0);
   Joystick.releaseButton(1);
   Joystick.releaseButton(2);
   Joystick.releaseButton(3);
   }

// Impulse controls.......................

Joystick.setThrottle(newPotentiometerTwoValue / 4);
}

//Code ends here


The knobs for the sliders come off easily, so I just cut slits into the board that I am using for a surface, hotglued the slider in, but the knobs back on and I was done. I may update this with pictures when I have them, but I never really documented anything with this part of the build. A note of warning: originally I had the Arduino connect through a USB hub. This caused problems with my PCs registering ghost commands (those from Armada II may remeber the problems we had with maintaining a dock) the issues went away when I instead connected it with a USB extension.




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notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #86 
Wanted to throw up some images of my fighter consoles that I am working on. Right now only one is fully functional, but when complete they will all have a joystick on one side and secondary controls on the other for speed and docking. The large screen on top will be used for the fighter screen and the smaller screen will be data for navigation if needed.

15036298_10208005112191224_3086459606473224382_n.jpg 



15032838_10208005018468881_1042230183248162912_n.jpg 

15095667_10208005018428880_2689969190668950324_n.jpg 
 


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El Phantasamo

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Reply with quote  #87 

I like the dual screens on the fighter consoles.

Do you think its possible to have 2 more monitors for left and right views?

notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #88 
Do you mean left and right views for the fighters? If so, then no. I don't know of any way to do that. Though there is a mode that allows you to put left and right views for the ship on a monitor.
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El Phantasamo

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Reply with quote  #89 

Yes, a 180 degree field of view for the fighter pilot.

I have had an idea for an immersion fighter cockpit in my head since armada II.

notsabbat

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Reply with quote  #90 
well, I suppose you could make a domed screen and then use a projector.


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