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Motion sickness in your living room with Dreamflyer

by Nick Haywood on 16 January 2008, 10:31

Tags: Dream Flyer, Simulation

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qak7g

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Motor-free tilty action in your flights sims!

CES 2008 We’ve all seen loads of shots of the weird and wonderful set-ups flight sim fans have installed in their rooms… everything from masses of monitors up to full cockpit enclosures recreating their favourite aircraft. But one thing they all lack is any sort of motion… you can bank, side slip, roll and do all that stuff but everything stays where it is unless you want to fork out some serious bucks for a motorised cage.

But now there’s an answer to your flight sim-motion desires that won’t break the bank, the lightweight, non-powered Dreamflyer. It’s actually pretty simple and a wonder that no-one has thought of it before. All you do is assemble the few parts and then tune the whole system to your bodyweight and position. Once that’s done, your inputs on the modified X52 flight-stick are translated into roll and pitch giving you up to 15⁰ of movement either way from neutral.

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The real beauty of the Dreamflyer is that once you’re properly balanced even though the motion is a reaction of your inputs, it doesn’t feel like you’re cranking the cage around. Sure, there is a certain amount of increased resistance the further you go from neutral but it feels smoother and more effortless than some commercial rides I’ve been on that use the same principal.

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The base unit costs $2800USD with another $199USD for the tri-monitor mounting. You get the modified X52 throttle and stick system from Saitek included in the rig along with a set of Saitek rudder pedals. The whole thing, not including monitors, weighs in at around 100lbs and can take a pilot of up to 250lbs (so that’s me covered with a bit of leeway).

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All you do is hook mount your monitor(s), hook up the Dreamflyer to your PC with the USB 2.0 connections and you’re away in your favourite flight sim. For the real hardcore enthusiast who loves nothing more than a 9 hour flight in a 727, the Dreamflyer is limited as there’s only a single throttle and flight stick rather than a yoke and throttle quadrant, but for the single seat pilot and fighter enthusiasts, the Dreamflyer looks like a load of fun and, with the short go I had, it’s got some potential, even if it is going for a tad more than it costs to build a high end PC…

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HEXUS Forums :: 6 Comments

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* * * Biggles flies undone! * * *

Seriously, though, it's a shedload of money for what is, effectively, just a few bits of bent tubing and a chair - and it's not even powered. More realistic price would be $300, any more and it's a rip-off, even allowing for the generous load limit - presumably designed for the ‘average’ american gamer…
I reckon Zak33 would love this for his IL-2 session :)
You can't even buy the controls for $300. It's all allum tubing and with the price of metal these days. Of course there is the cost of manufacturing too. So if you think that you can make it for $300. I'll buy one.
It's all allum tubing and with the price of metal these days. Of course there is the cost of manufacturing too. So if you think that you can make it for $300. I'll buy one.

I don't think that the metal is that expensive - for example, check out the prices for alloy tubing here :
The Aluminium Shop Alloy 6082T6 - General Purpose Engineering Grade
and that's without any bulk discount. You can get odd lengths even cheaper from a decent scrap yard. If I wanted something like this, I probably would build one. But I don't - so I won't - I'd rather spend the money on time in a real aircraft!
Thanks for the info on the tubing. I had no idea just how much it cost. 1 3/4 is 34.84 a foot, that's Euro's. Roughly $50. There is approx 29 foot on the Dreamflyer. $1400. or so. Even with a discount. I would much rather spend my time in a plane too, but just can't get out as much as I would like. Next best thing I guess.