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I've been building a Zenith 750 Cruzer for a couple years now. I'm in what's commonly referred to among home builders as the 80% done, 80% to go stage.

I've had this idea to put a 6502 in the plane panel SOMEWHERE. Maybe not doing anything terribly important, just for fun. I've been thinking a 5 inch screen that does a cool startup animation, and displays a couple non critical readouts like outside air temperature and flight time.

My dilemma is what to use. I'm not gutting a REAL C64 for this, although that's what I have the most Assembly experience in.

My current ideas are:

  • A 64 Clone
  • Emulator on a Raspberry Pi
  • Commander X16
  • Custom 6502 board with an LED matrix

I'm also currently very distracted by my Color Maximite 2 which is FANTASTIC.

If I could just wave a wand, I'd probably just go with the Commander X16. I think it maintains the spirit of what I want here while giving me the flexibility to do a lot more with it. It might depend on the timing. The plane will likely be finished in late winter and I'll need to allocate the space for something by then.

I'd also love to hear any crazy ideas for software that might be cool to see. The screen will be on the passenger(co pilot) side. It could be just for fun, or maybe something a little more serious.

As an experimental aircraft, I can put anything I want in the panel. I'll do something conservative and well tested for primary displays like Dynon or Garmin, but anything else is an open book.

If you're interested, I have a somewhat updated build log of the plane. https://myzenith750.com

My "other" airplane is the somewhat famous "Tiger Baron". That's a certified airplane, so can't do custom panel additions there. The story behind the Baron is here (along with pictures, it's a pretty nutso paint job)

Michael

 

 

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Edited by mrdoornbos
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6 hours ago, John Chow Seymour said:

Pick a system that can run a flight simulator.

If my old CoCo 2 could run a flight simulator, the X16 certainly can.

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Well, the first 90% of the job takes 90% of the time,  the last 10% takes the remaining 90%.

So awfully tempting to start with a Pi0 running an LED board then build the custom 6502 to take over its job.

 

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On 11/9/2020 at 5:34 AM, BruceMcF said:

Well, the first 90% of the job takes 90% of the time,  the last 10% takes the remaining 90%.

So awfully tempting to start with a Pi0 running an LED board then build the custom 6502 to take over its job.

 

I'll use modern avionics as primary displays. Probably Dynon. The idea of the 6502 in an Experimental is really for the fun of it. It'll be a "secondary" display and functionality. Just for fun really

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On 11/12/2020 at 12:12 AM, mrdoornbos said:

I'll use modern avionics as primary displays. Probably Dynon. The idea of the 6502 in an Experimental is really for the fun of it. It'll be a "secondary" display and functionality. Just for fun really

Yes, I was referring to the secondary display you described.

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Just think, if you install something that can run a flight simulator, you can:

  • in weather too poor to fly, sit in your actual plane and pretend you're flying
  • try taking off and landing the real plane and the simulated one simultaneously (Note: if you try this, I am not responsible for any accidents)
  • tell your friends your ride got pimped ("Yo Dawg, I hear you like planes, so...")
  • post "aerial photographs" that are just screen grabs of the simulator. "But they were taken from a real plane in flight!", etc.

I'm sure someone will make a flight sim for the X16; I think that's your best bet.

That plane looks awesome, by the way.  Best of luck with this whole project.  Keep us posted.

 

 

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12 minutes ago, John Chow Seymour said:

Just think, if you install something that can run a flight simulator, you can:

  • in weather too poor to fly, sit in your actual plane and pretend you're flying
  • try taking off and landing the real plane and the simulated one simultaneously (Note: if you try this, I am not responsible for any accidents)
  • tell your friends your ride got pimped ("Yo Dawg, I hear you like planes, so...")
  • post "aerial photographs" that are just screen grabs of the simulator. "But they were taken from a real plane in flight!", etc.

I'm sure someone will make a flight sim for the X16; I think that's your best bet.

That plane looks awesome, by the way.  Best of luck with this whole project.  Keep us posted.

 

 

These are excellent ideas!  I fly the Baron about 250 hours a year, so I'm looking forward to having this Zenith to just play around with.

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