16. March 2014 by Peter
So – along with all My other projects – I am working on the top part of the MIP where the autopilot and EFIS are located. Actually I am trying to work my way towards making glare wings. But there are some things that I need to finish before I can do that. First thing on that list is backlighting my autopilot unit.
My autopilot-unit is from OpenCockpits and backlighting it was pretty easy.
All other backlight in the cockpit is done with 12v LED-strips. So of course I also use LED strips here. They are easy to work with; and when wired up I can dim it together with the rest of the panel.
So, taking the unit apart was pretty easy. My only problem was the disengage switch. I have a saying: “If it can come on; it can come off”. It is just a matter of figuring out how to without breaking anything. But in this case I had no idea how to get off!
So I ended up soldering the entire switch off the circuit board!
Once taken apart it was quite easy cutting the LED strips, wire them and glue them on the PCB.
Only problem I encountered was shine through where the digits are placed. Apparently OpenCockpits has allowed a large margin/window on this model. This however was solved fairly easy with some black tape.
Another place that need some black tape is the edges of the entire unit. On this picture you can see the LED-strip light but this light must be kept inside the unit, so just cover it with some tape.
I am quite happy with the final result. Next project is covering the plates on top of the autopilot with (fake) leather.