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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Will document my journey to a functional steering wheel that simplifies common button actuations while maintaining control of the car and avoiding distractions.
As a disclaimer, this will be focused on a fixed wheel rather than a removable one, but obviously can be applied to other configurations.
As will soon be clear, I have 13 circuits to work with:grin2:
Initial thoughts on functionality include:
1.Horn
2.High beam flash
3.Momentary wiper
4.Windshield washer squirt
5.Shift light
6. Turn signals
7. Active aero :shifty: (I'm thinking high downforce/higher drag base configuration...low downforce/lower drag configuration triggered by button on a straightaway, also switchable for highway cruising)

I am very much open to suggestions! Many more open circuits..what am I missing?

I'm thinking aluminum plate, between the Momo hub and steering wheel.

My basic goal, as noted in another thread, looks something like this:



But I am also pursuing options for wheel mounted shift light(s). Obviously, the shift light is ideally at the highest point on the wheel...If you look at the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid, I'm surprised at how the control panel basically touches the upper rim of the steering wheel... Does this come into play while driving???

 

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Discussion Starter #2
So here is the key. I snagged this off ebay for like $12. 2002 Cadillac DeVille, others may work. So...newer clocksprings use a variety of resistors at each steering wheel button which allows many functions over a single circuit. i.e. all of your cruise control buttons, radio buttons on a current car can use one circuit for all the functionalities. Each button alters the resistance in the circuit which is interpreted by a "brain" and that function is performed. But in '02, the DeVille had an "old school" system - 1 circuit for each function. 9 functions (maybe a ground here or there) on the wheel plus 4 for the airbag- 13 total circuits available! Quite a bit more than the anemic Corvette clockspring. And GM, God bless them, likes to use similar parts on all of their cars. So it *almost* perfectly fits the C5.
Remember that clocksprings are fragile. They cannot by spun round and round by your 5-yer-old. To find the approximate centerpoint prior to mounting, GENTLY rotate as far as it will easily spin in one direction, then repeat in the other direction, then split the difference.
Without further ado:



Separate the wheat from the chaff



Among the crap pulled off the clockspring is a nice 4-way fuse box that may come in handy down the road.



Notice, the clockspring *almost* fits the C5, but with all the circuits the plastic channel is a little wider. This holds the outer rim of the clockspring stationary while the inner part rotates with the steering wheel. Just widen the metal opening on the rack to accommodate.



That's better.

 

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Discussion Starter #3
Get rid of the connectors and airbag sheaths, the airbag wires slide easily into the main sheath giving you all 13 wires in the one sheath. Momo was kind enough to provide a perfectly sized channel for the bundle.





The yellow rectangular plastic on the clockspring at the base of the bundle has 3 tiny tabs that need to be shaved off so it can fully seat in the channel on the Momo hub, no big deal.



Voila! Time to start on a button plate. Anyone have one laying around??:grin2:



 

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Button 8: Missile launcher?

:grin2:

you would be hard pressed to find additional, 'essential' functions over and above what's
listed in your first post.

Maybe use extra circuits for feedback LED's (turn indicators, MIL, high engine temp.)?
 

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Button 8: Missile launcher?

:grin2:

you would be hard pressed to find additional, 'essential' functions over and above what's
listed in your first post.

Maybe use extra circuits for feedback LED's (turn indicators, MIL, high engine temp.)?
Yea, definitely need a missile launcher. But dont forget the flame thrower also. You will need one for the front and one for the rear.

So that takes care of buttons 8-10, so the remaining 2 could be for garage door opener and for passenger eject. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Designing around FFR wheel. I actually really like the feel of this wheel! Ignore my (and my 2 year old's) scribbles.



Locate buttons. 7mm pilot holes for button switches.


Build plate around buttons


Add MOMO bolt pattern. I was perplexed by this...then realized that it is simply a 70mm diameter circle with six evenly spaced holes, ie every 60 degrees.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Ready to print and see how it feels



Off to bed while this thing grows. I remember seeing this technology not too long ago at a huge biomed company, I'm pretty sure they paid $300k. Amazing how "cheap" they are now...
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Not bad for v1.0! Will get some buttons ordered.


A main goal is to be able to use and grip the wheel naturally and not even know they are there. And to be able to reach them with my hand on the wheel rim. And not interfere with seeing the gauges.


I can already see that v1.1 will have both the upper and lower buttons follow the arc of the wheel, like where my thumb is here, rather than having to reach over another button:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Left myself about 1mm too little space for the center upper button, will address that for v1.1b :). I really like how this feels. Low profile, does not at all interfere with comfortable driving grip...yet easily accessible without taking hand off wheel.





 

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Discussion Starter #14
Somewhat serendipitous that I didn't leave enough room for a matching upper/center button. I like having this style button in between so I can quickly identify which button I'm on without looking. Calling this done for now...



 
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