Thursday, April 19, 2012

Armchair aviator builds Boeing 737 simulator in his garage


 Most flight enthusiasts are content having the latest version of Microsoft Flight installed on their home computers, but not James Price of Pleasanton, California. An air traffic controller at Oakland International Airport, Price has spent the past 12 years building a fully functional Boeing 737 flight simulator in his garage, using the cockpit and nose section from an actual commercial jet.

What's more, Price designed and programmed his own simulation software, which not only produces the lifelike visuals projected onto a massive wrap-around screen in front of the simulator, but also interfaces with the working instruments, knobs, and switches. Price, a private pilot, says that 90% of the original instruments from the Lufthansa 737 his cockpit comes from are functional in the simulator, including a number of LCD screens.

The only thing missing is motion. Given Price's obvious level of commitment to his hobby, it wouldn't surprise us if putting his stunning sim on hydraulics — fluid-filled pistons that can tilt the cockpit, creating a sensation of movement — is his next decade-long project.

[via Geekosystem]

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