Flying-Model-Simulator (FMS)

Flying-Model-Simulator is a free radio control flight simulator for rotary and fixed wing aircraft. Using a COTS radio control, and this free flight simulator, one can develop flying skills without expensive accidents.

Hardware Used:
Spektrum DX7 Radio Control
USB cable, GWFSM002 from GWS
Host Computer: x86-64 machine (AMD Phenom x4 9950 Black (AMD64))

System:

  • Ubuntu 9.10 running Sun VirtualBox Version 3.1.2 r56127.
  • Virtual Machine running Windows XP SP2 32-bit.
  • Other SW: Firefox 3.5, Avast Antivirus Version 4, VirtualBox Guest Add Ons. The VirtualBox guest add ons are necessary for the video drivers.
  • Procedure:
    1. Obtain a desktop computer. Any desktop machine with a USB port, and internet connection should suffice. Install the host Operating System of Ubuntu 9.10, as well as the specified VirtualBox.
    2. (VirtualBox is used here, however, XP could of course be used as the machine’s primary operating system). In VirtualBox, create a new virtual machine. Specific options used are described in WindowsXP_SP2_32.xml
    3. Install Windows XP to the virtual machine, obtain all updates.
    4. We now have a fresh, updated operating system to begin the project.

Install Flying-Model-Simulator:
Go to the FMS homepage: http://n.ethz.ch/student/mmoeller/fms/index_e.html
Follow the ‘Downloads’ link, and download Flying-Model-Simulator Version 2.0 Beta 7.
The proper install file is: fmsdisk01.exe
Double click for a simple install.

Running Flying-Model-Simulator:
Start->Programs->Flying Model Simulator->FMS 2.0 Beta 7

Install and Configuring the radio with the USB cable:
To allow USB usage in VirtualBox, make sure to add the current Ubuntu user to ‘vboxusers’: System->Administration->Users and Groups.

Plug the USB cable into the computer, ‘pass through’ to the Windows XP virtual machine, you should see the cable installing itself in the bottom right corner of the screen.

Plug the other end of the cable into the DX7. Start FSM.

Controls->Analog control. Select ‘Joystick interface’, click ‘Mapping/Calibration’. Set the following values (Rudder:4, Elevator:3,Aileron:2,Throttle:1,Tail:4,Nick:3,Roll:2,Pitch:1). I invert the elevator. Click on ‘Calibrate’, move the sticks in cirles per instructions, click ‘Next’. Center all sticks, click ‘Finish’. Click ‘Ok’, and setup is complete.

Fly, YES. Land, NO.
Spend many hours practicing.

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