Sidestick Solenoid Lock

Sidestick Solenoid Lock

When the autopilot (AP) is engaged the sidesticks are locked in placed by a solenoid. This prevents the Pilot Flying (PF), or Pilot Not Flying (PNF) from accidentally bumping or moving the sidestick when AP is on. However with a certain amount of force the pilots can still override the solenoid disengaging the solenoid and … Continue reading

Substituting Transducers 

Substituting Transducers 

Transducers are expensive. These are well refined potentiometers attached to your throttle lever, sidestick, flaps lever or spoiler/speedbrake. Transducers usually come with more than one potentiometer – this is for redundancy and to ensure the values in all the potentiometer read the same; any error would have severe catastrophic consequence. If you are lucky, when … Continue reading

Sidestick Pinouts

Sidestick Pinouts

Thank you to Simon and Volker for the help determining the solenoid pin outs. Polarity matters in this case. Axis pin-outs which map translation movement have not been notated (Volker has now provided the pinouts for elevator – pitch and aileron – roll input) as the sidesticks I am working with do not have transducers.Transducers convert … Continue reading

Anatomy of an Airbus Sidestick

Anatomy of an Airbus Sidestick

The Airbus sidestick is not a simple joystick. Each axis is connected to a transducer which relays electrical signals to the ailerons and elevators. In addition there is a solenoid which is activated when Autopilot is engaged preventing the sidestick from moving. However, apply enough force and the AP and solenoid will disengaged. Continue reading