The Pro Shift Board

Visit the Youtube channel!

This is Pro Shift
by SymProjects

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What it does…

You can connect LEDS to it, any size and shape, and it will make them flash when a car is revving, when a car is out of fuel or when damage is present. There are lots of possibilities here

It can command up to 16 leds and 8 push buttons. The dimensions are 66mm x 33mm, it powers itself by USB so it doesn’t require any external power supply.


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Connecting LEDs and Push Buttons

In the picture can be seen the numbers “1” – “3” – “5”…”15″ : That´s the positive row for Leds and where the longer pin/ leg of the leds are connected.

The numbers “2” – “4” -“6″…”16” are the negative pins, where the short leg from the LED connects.

The “B1” to “B8” are the inputs for the push buttons.

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 LEDs and their Types

Type 5050 LEDS below, RGB ones

Some common LED sizes and types are; 3mm, 5mm, 10mm, hat type and rounds. The characteristic for all of these to work properly with this board is that they should be up to 4V.

There is the possibility this board can work with other voltages but with the one´s i have tested with 3,2V everything worked as it should/ as expected.

Options for the use of the leds

For Traction Control, Pit request, Hand brake, Turn lights or Fuel level,  Engine temperature, Neutral gear, Rev. Counter, Water temperature or Oil pressure.

Also, through the software the LEDs when connected to this board can be used as blue, red and yellow flags.

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The Software

http://www.symprojects.com/downloads

Software is easy to set up. The device is automatically detected by Windows as an USB Game Controller, so no extra steps needed.

This is the Pro Shift available at www.SymProjects.com

If you want to connect 8 push buttons the firmware of the board should be updated. Please read.

Bits of handy information: When the brightness is set to 100% the LEDs receive a 15mA current. Each LED can be configured to blink at three different speeds when switched on. More than one Pro Shift controllers can be connected at the same time. This board works on a large number of titles, here is a list of games and available functions: Docs

Logitech G27 with Momo Prototipo – Custom built

This customization took a wide loop once i got the hand on a Momo Prototipo my father had on his Renault 5; “Perfect combination for my wheel”, i thought.

We have here a stock  G27, with a chilicoke style adapter for 70mm pcd wheels, a Momo Prototipo  with 310mm and NKK push buttons.

The MOMO: This one is from month 1 ( January), 1980.

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Logitech G27 Base

To some it might as well be a misuse of a wheel on such base ( Logitech) and it is, in a sense, to me at least… .  Found one on eBay from late 70´s that was sold for above 800€, and to me this is a base bottleneck.

Like having a bottleneck on your computer due to differences in hardware parts (performance wise).

..and this indeed is the perfect analogy; you can game on a 300$ computer, but is not the same as gaming on a 1000$ computer… . The same with the wheels: you can drive in a game with a 300$ wheel, but it is not the same as driving the same game with a 1000$ wheel… .

So is the question; “what i am looking for?”

• I want to push and pull as hard as i can from a wheel, i want it to go through 60 laps at Nurburgring  and maintain the same exact force feedback from the start lane,

• I want to turn it and not be worried about braking something,

• I want to feel the bumps on the road and be able to prevent and predict where the car will be,

I want a direct force feedback wheel!

The force feedback output, from having a larger wheel, could be one of the factors to take into acccount but even so, this Momo is not much heavier then the stock logitech wheel.

It is 270mm vs 310mm.

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I will make the topic of a direct drive wheel arouse on another time but for now this is my feeling when using a 300$ wheel.

I can elaborate a  G27 review and can even say : “Sure you can race with a Logitech G27, sure you can have results, but are you liking it? If you are, keep it up!”

Ok,

Moving ON…

NKK Push buttons are high quality push buttons, with a precise feel when one triggers them. I had several available choices regarding buttons and from 2 brands (Knitter & NKK) i stood with the NKK for a simple reason; i eventually found a supplier that could sell them. These push buttons are not easy to get in Portugal and i could not find them at all. The big European suppliers do not sell  small quantities or for domiciliary use, but i could find one; Mouser Electronics.

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NKK push button with  caps, shrouds and conical nuts. #1

To give an idea:

1 NKK Push button: 4€. (Image above)

1 Knitter Push button: 7€ ( Credits to Leo Bodnar for the Photo)

1 OTTO pushbutton : 15€

KNITTER Leo

Knitter push button

These OTTO buttons are a must and surely will use them in a future project. Anyway, they will stay amazing on a decent wheel.

OTTO

OTTO push button

A good part of GT3 cars in the “real world” make use of such push buttons and switches on the wheel´s car and interior.

I need to make a distinction regarding the push buttons;

Although NKK have a precise feel they are not for everyone. They require a bit of force to actuate ( MB2011) and this is where the Knitter push buttons go strong. They seem much smoother, with a not so strong click, but with a precise, high quality feel.

NKK modular push buttons:

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G13B Guard (Aluminum / black)

The wheel was fitted with a NKK G13B Guard and yellow caps. There is a whole array of caps,  guards and nuts for the push buttons. Bellow is the G12B guard, in aluminum too, fitted with a 8mm yellow cap.

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All these extra parts are paid, so the caps, the nuts and so on.

What is seen on image #1 is something like 20-25€..but it is worth it. The buttons are almost all in metal and there is the possibility of connect them in “normally open” or “normally closed” way.

In a nutshell:

“open” or “closed” refers to a circuit that electricity goes by.

“normally open” is when electricity cannot go through because the circuit is open, hence the button is not connected. When the button is pressed electricity can go because pressing physically the button closes the circuit.

“normally closed” is when electricity is always going through, so the button is connected and giving an input. If you press it it stops that input. It is the contrary of the function above.

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G12B Guard

The caps are “screw down” caps, and they are interchangeable. Can be used on different buttons or on the same buttons, different sizes.

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I have opted for just 3 buttons on the wheel itself. Two of them to look to the sides and one for radio. This was a rational option, to make the wheel with less “gadgetry” possible but having 2 or 3 basic functions.

In the tone of summing up…

It is wise to be said that i enjoy the experience of driving with this custom logitech g27 and that i have learned two or three things;

• The Logitech G27 base is a decent base (highly customizable).

• The Momo Prototipo is rare, with decent size and very nice spongy feel to it, when you really grab it!

• NKK push buttons feel is great. High quality click, modular and robust.

In the world of tomorrow, i will certainly fit this wheel on a more reliable and manly base, something that can provide me a good  experience .  I mind the quality of my experience, when driving; if i do not mind it is because i can´t afford it!

Ultimately we just need to go and get the pieces to allow ourselves the experience, a good quality experience.

See ya soon.