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Author Topic: Servo amps, force GT - electric power steering unit from a car  (Read 2763 times)

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Servo amps, force GT - electric power steering unit from a car
« on: January 13, 2013, 03:40:29 pm »
This is for another of my projects.... i have already got a working mame machine in a golden tee cab,

and now i am building a driving simulator, but a pretty specific one, a bus driving sim for Omsi, basically i am building a replica of the cab of a German MAN D92 double decker bus,

i have the dashboard mocked up, and for now i have mounted a bus steering wheel to the shaft of my force GT wheel, it works but is slow due to the weight of the real wheel, and size, and i can feel i'm wearing the plastic gears out.

So i picked up an electric power steering column out of a Vauxhaul corsa, and the plan is to interface the logic board from the force GT wheel to the motor on the steering column.... wires reversed so it opposes turning rather than helping as it is set up for now.

I have never played with something like this before, i believe i need a servo amplifier, but i am not sure....
The motor i have runs on 12 volts, and apparently it is rated for something like 60 to 80 amps!!!! this thing is designed to drag the wheels around under about a ton of engine, car and lardy driver :)

Obviously i don't fancy having 60 amps of force feedback, nor having to buy a servo amp capable of handling that current,

Are the servo amplifiers outputs current limited? so i can keep the max power to my motor down low, and not have it try and draw more current than the amp can handle,  i.e say a 10 amp amplifier, and be sure it will not be dammaged by the motor being stalled and trying to draw 6 times that current.

There's also a torque sensor in the shaft of the column, but i doubt i will be able to utilise it,


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Re: Servo amps, force GT - electric power steering unit from a car
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2013, 03:59:43 pm »
You're probably in uncharted territory with the electric power steering motor.
My biggest concern would be what effect the gearing and motor speed will have on the ffb.
Best way to find out though is to try it!  ;D

You could stick a fuse inline with the motor or the power supply to prevent it from pulling more than the servo amp is rated for,
then adjust the ffb strength in logitech profiler or on the servo amp to a low level.

There are a few links to builds using servo amps in the driving cab thread linked in my sig including wiring diagrams in my MOMO hack thread.