Pico Throttle

By Rob Zwetsloot. Posted

Leo emailed us early in April to show off his throttle lever that he’d made out of Easter egg boxes (and a lot of hot glue). It’s an ingeniously simple construction – a Raspberry Pi Pico measures a potentiometer, which is attached to a cardboard handle on a little rod so it can turn. Using HID code with CircuitPython, he can then send an analogue signal to his PC as a control axis – perfect for flight sims or Elite Dangerous. It also features a digital button on the back of the throttle to set maximum reverse thrust for when you move the lever beyond the idle position.

“I’ve often had the occasional flight on my grandad’s copy of Flight Simulator X when I visit him, but I purchased X-Plane 12 after Christmas, so I’ve been using it regularly for about three months.” Leo tells us about what inspired him. “[The throttle is] reasonably rigid. There’s some flex in the lever side-to-side, so the plate that pushes the reverser button has to be a bit wider, but the box and paper-tube pivot is solid enough. It is, however, very light and likes to move around the desk.”

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