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Thread: Steering-Wheel Controller

  1. #1
    Newbie tyRion's Avatar
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    Steering-Wheel Controller

    For the Steering wheel control what do most ppl do?

    I was thinking about using this, but If Im not using WinAmp its prob not much use.

    It can however perform some Windows functions

    Volume up|down: increase|decrease master volume level of default sound card.
    Volume up|down [small step]: the same, but 4 times slower (for sensitive mixers).
    Wave volume up|down: increase|decrease wave volume level of default sound card.
    Wave volume up|down [small step]: the same, but 4 times slower.
    Shut down: shut down the computer.
    Force shut down: shut down the computer w/o waiting for processes to exit (fast).
    Reboot: restart the computer.
    Force reboot: reboot the computer w/o waiting for processes to exit.
    Here is a Page on making a Remote for anyone whos interested

    Also, I see the Zorro has made an app here for using your mouse wheel to simulate a keyboard.

    Would it be possible to hack up some old Wheel-mice and use the wheels on your steering wheel, somehow connecting them tru IR or serial, to adjust volume up/down, track scan, etc.

  2. #2
    See me in my wet t-shirt. stevieg's Avatar
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    I've used a gamepad, and written a directX which simulates keystrokes using the AutoItX library. Works flawlessly. More info and source code on my website in the 'Building' section in the installs section.
    Ford Focus MP3 : www.stevieg.org/carpc Blog Updated 29 January 2009!
    Car PC Status: Complete - Undergoing Software Redevelopment

  3. #3
    Constant Bitrate
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    I've just finished interfacing my CD changer stalk with my new car PC. I used a keyboard controller (the little PCB from a keyboard) and wired some microswitches to it.

    The microswiches are positioned around the stalk so that as you move the stalk it clicks the appropriate switch. The switches then emulate the arrow keys. I've also used the twist switch on the end of the stick for the "Return" key.

  4. #4
    Newbie tyRion's Avatar
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    I was in a car shop today and I saw this, a Blaupunkt RC-10 Thummer



    Is there any way one of these could be used with a IR reciever to change tracks on your PC?

    Has anyone tried this, or does anyone have one of these?

    You can get them on e-Bay here, and this shows the features of it.

    It can also be found on CarDomain

  5. #5
    See me in my wet t-shirt. stevieg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyRion
    I was in a car shop today and I saw this, a Blaupunkt RC-10 Thummer



    Is there any way one of these could be used with a IR reciever to change tracks on your PC?

    Has anyone tried this, or does anyone have one of these?

    You can get them on e-Bay here, and this shows the features of it.

    It can also be found on CarDomain

    Yep it's quite straight forward, though not 100% reliable with IR as you need the receiver in line-of-sight. You can get the reciever from www.irman.com and it comes with software to automate the IR functions.
    Ford Focus MP3 : www.stevieg.org/carpc Blog Updated 29 January 2009!
    Car PC Status: Complete - Undergoing Software Redevelopment

  6. #6
    Newbie tyRion's Avatar
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    Ok, I have another Idea, If you got 3 standard ball Inteli-Mice, and took the 3 scroll wheels. Left the first one connected to the controller as per normal, then the second is connected to the X-axis for scrolling up and down, and button1 for clicking, then the third scroll wheel was connected to the Y-axis of the mouse and the second button.

    If you integrated these 3 buttons in to your steering wheel, you could change volume/mute with one, input text with the next (a-la Zorros app) and change track/(your own function) with the third

    Would this work?

    I would have to find a ball mouse to use first

    But from a software end of things could you link the x-axis of a mouse to volume up/down?

  7. #7
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    At least on my car, the steering wheel buttons are a resistor divider network. with some pretty simple circuity, you should be able to feed this into a gameport on a computer.

  8. #8
    See me in my wet t-shirt. stevieg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rickertsen2
    At least on my car, the steering wheel buttons are a resistor divider network. with some pretty simple circuity, you should be able to feed this into a gameport on a computer.
    Mine were a resister network too. I figured it would be a lot simpler to take the circuit board out, remove the resisters and pop 5 wires in to each button.

    Easiest way to use the resister networks is one the the USB interface boards for around 20, simply hook it up to the analogue in.
    Ford Focus MP3 : www.stevieg.org/carpc Blog Updated 29 January 2009!
    Car PC Status: Complete - Undergoing Software Redevelopment

  9. #9
    FLAC PatO's Avatar
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    I got one of those RC-10's last week. Built an IR reciever and transmitter which works with WinLIRC. Then wrote software to handle the keypresses and cause it to perform functions in Windows (Frodoplayer) and also transmit back to the HU (volume, stations, etc).

    Because it has so few buttons, I used the big blue one as a "mode" button and put a glyph on the monitor to tell me which mode I'm in. So, instead of 9 buttons, there are 8 X number of modes.
    http://www.jeepmp3.com/
    CarPC Stolen. Starting over.
    Ne1 recognize the avatar?

  10. #10
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    Radio control project

    When i get some time (hopefully next weekend) I am going to figure out how to hack my factory controls to a computer. I am using the stock headunit and want to be able to reatain all the normal functionality. I did some probing with my trusty O-scope and finally found the wire that goes to the steering controls. It seems they form a resistor voltage divider network. When you press a button it inserts various resistors in the curcuit and changes the voltage on a wire. I am going to build some isolation circuity and route the input to a USB Joystick, which i will gut and use as a cheap USB A/D converter.

    I have seen a few programs and plugins for various programs to read a USB joystick but i don't know if any of them have the capability to behave the way i need them to. I need something that can read an axis off a joystick an decode it to 'buttons' based on the position of the axis. I think i am probably going ot end up writing something myself.

    I will post my progress and maybie write a tutorial when i am done.

    There is one thing i can't figure out which is how i will switch between "normal mode" and "control my carputer mode". I guess i could rig up a switch but i would really prefer not to have to mess with a switch everytime i want to switch. Ideally i would set my headunit to use the aux input and the steering wheel buttons would magically know to control the computer. Any ideas?


    Btw does anybody happen to know how to take the steering wheel apart on a 2004 impala? I'm starting to think i have to take the whole steering column out.

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