Rudder Pedals Effectiveness

  1. Connect Saitek Rudder Pedals to USB
  2. Start FSX-SE in default flight @ KLFI with a stock aircraft
  3. Check if you don’t have any assignments for this aircraft in FSUIPC4; if so, clear them.
  4. Open Options-Setting-Controls and select in Controller Type: Saitek Pro Flight Rudder Pedalsrudderpedals01
  5. This is what you get: [Sensitivity 127;127;64-Null Zone 1;1;36].
    rudderpedals02 If you have other values, press Reset Defaults.
  6. First to calibrate the hardware:
    press Calibrate and select in the popup Game Controllers the Properties of your Pedals. if you don’t touch the merchandise…this is what you see:
  7. When moving the left toe, the plus sign moves from the upper left corner to the upper right corner; the right toe moves from upper left towards lower left corner.
    Move the rudder, full left and right.
  8. rudderpedals03Now to calibrate press the button Calibrate in the Settings tab and press Next in the Game Device Calibration popup screen.
  9. Next again, because there is no button to push…
  10. Press your left toe and the right toe in full and press Next – Next.
  11. Move the rudder from the center towards fully left and right;
    press Next and Finish.
  12. You get back to the Test tab; press Apply and OK + OK.
  13. Y’re back at the  Settings-Controls page and select the Axis tab where you check the reverse checkboxes from both toe brakes.
  14. When you have a joystick attached, delete the rudder assignment (by preference).
  15. SAVE the flight ! Otherwise the next time it restores the default values. You may want to export (and later import) the settings via the Axes tab > Export Controls.
  16. Now do the test ride. This is about the rudder effectiveness.
  17. Load the flight. ..Slowly move your aircraft taxiing on the runway an “feel” how it reacts. Takeoff.
  18. Since the effectiveness is directly linked to the aircraf, you wil find the statements in the section [flight_tuning] from the aircraft involved.
  19. Rudder Pedals need best to be optimized for each type of aircraft where you can store the setings in a aircraft specific xml file.
  20. Sample aircraft used: ../SimObjects/Airplanes/Carenado A36 BONANZA /
  21. Aircraft.cfg like:
cruise_lift_scalar =1.0
pitch_stability =1.0 
roll_stability =1.0
yaw_stability =1.0
parasite_drag_scalar =1.0
induced_drag_scalar =1.0
elevator_effectiveness =1.0
aileron_effectiveness =1.0
rudder_effectiveness =1.0
elevator_trim_effectiveness =1.0
aileron_trim_effectiveness =1.0 
rudder_trim_effectiveness =1.0 
hi_alpha_on_yaw = 1.0 
p_factor_on_yaw = 0.5 
torque_on_roll = 0.5 
gyro_precession_on_yaw = 0.5 
gyro_precession_on_pitch = 0.5 
gyro_precession_on_roll = 0.5

!! Before you make any changes to this aircraft.cfg, 
make a copy before you go and register the changes !!

Spoiler Axes: How To Configure

Hello Captains,

in the category FAQ this week a sample of How To Configure Spoiler Axes. There are 2 possibilities: (a) with the Controller in FSX-SE and (b) with the Add-on FSUIPC4.

(a) How To Configure Spoiler Axes with the Controller in FSX-SE.

This sample is the simplest configuration. Will always work and shows also the %-levels of the extended spoilers. Assuming you have a Saitek Throttle Quadrant…

  1. Start FSX-Se in Free flight with aircraft Learjet45
  1. Go to Options-Settings-Controls and tab CONTROL AXES
  2. Select Controller type: Saitek Pro Flight Throttle Quadrant
  3. Select in the Assignment list the line Engine 1 throttle axis
  4. Press the button Change Assignment… and move the middle slider on the TQ
  5. You will see the Y-axis assigned
  6. Repeat for the line Engine 2 throttle axis for the right slider to get the Z-axis
  7. Scroll down to the line Spoiler Axis and assign the left slider AND check-mark Reverse.

    (Depending on the chosen aircraft uncheck Reverse)
  8. If you see any other line assigned in the Axis list, just press Delete Joystick Assignment.
  9. Close with OK
  10. Get in the plane @ Cockpit view and watch the position on your TQ vs the position of the spoilers in the EICAS

Done! This is the most simple way to configure the spoilers.

Preparations for assignment of a spoiler axis with FSUIPC4.

You can visualize the values of the axis position with FSUIPC by showing them on the Tile bar. This is how it works.

Open FSUIPC and select tab Logging. Fill the Offset 0BD0 Type 32, checkmark FS Title Bar and close with OK

This is what you get:

Axis values in FSUIPC4
Position Status           0bd0(S32) RAW   Value
100%     0=Retracted      0         0     +16383
75%      1=AUTOSPLR ARMED 4800      64    +8192
50%      2=               8520      128     0
25%      3=               12850     192   -8192
0%       4=Full           16322     255   -16383

(b) How To Configure A Spoiler Axes with FSUIPC4.

Method 1: without Reverse!

Method 2 with Reverse

Send the Spoilers direct to FSUIPC Calibration and dont forget to check-mark the Reverse.

Multi Panel


There’s not much to explain about autopilot section of the Multi Panel.
Select a position from ALT-VS-IAS-HDG-CRS using the Mode Selector.
Change the value of the selected function with the rotary knob.
Use the backlit buttons to engage/disengage the autopilot mode you need.

Acceleration value of the Rotary knob.
Best results are achieved fine tuning the rotary knob acceleration values. Each mode (ALT, VS, IAS, HDG and CRS) has its own acceleration value.
Try by yourself the best values that suite your needs. Consider, as a starting point, that ALT and IAS normally work better with a certain amount of acceleration.
VS works better without acceleration.

Pay attention to Auto Throttle. Multi Panel AT switch is not spring loaded, so it stays on the last position regardless the simulator has disengaged it.

Flaps steps are automatic and set by the aircraft is use. If you need you can reverse the flaps.

Note: since this is a wheel, it suggests that the function is like an axis. However it is a switch function, so whenever you start to experiment wit FSUIPC4 this will not work with the axes in FSUIPC.
The Pitch Trim wheel is the Multi Panel most valueable feature. With a good setup you can achieve a very realistic and comfortable pitch trim wheel.
Default Saitek driver lacks in sensitivity, so it’s impossible to set the trim very precisely.
SPAD let you set wheel sensitivity and acceleration, sensitivity is the single step trim value. The higher the sensitivity the smaller the single step.
Set trim sensitivity and acceleration to best suite your needs, consider that fast jet planes (like military fighters) work better with lower sensitivity and medium-high acceleration. Small single prop GA aircrafts like higher sensitivity and medium acceleration. Your mileage may vary.

Every switch, button or rotary knob is configurable. Every panel, even of the same type, has its own configuration, so it’s possible to setup different function to the same button of different panel.

Possible functions are:

  1. No Event: ‘No Event’ should be self explanatory. By default the panel functions selectors are set to ‘No Event’. 
  2. FSUIPC Offset Change: ‘FSUIPC Offset Change’ means that Spad internal logic is used to manage the given function. Spad writes directly into Flight Simulator using FSUIPC. 
  3. FSUIPC Virtual Button: ‘FSUIPC Virtual Button’ is a particular feature offered by FSUIPC. Basically it’s a virtual joystick buttons management. Pros of this function are the high number of buttons available (288) and the ability to work even if Flight Simulator application has not the focus on it. Cons is the speed. If you need to map rotary knobs functions the best way is to use keyboard emulation which is much faster. FSUIPC Virtual button requires the registered version of FSUIPC. 
  4. Keyboard Emulation: ‘Keyboard Emulation’ is all about sending keystrokes to Flight Simulator. Pay attention, if Flight Simulator is not the active application (in example if you are working with your charts) this function will not work.

FSUIPC Virtual Buttons and Keyboard Emulation require the proper setup into Flight Simulator.

One of the best ways to integrate function not mapped on short keys or FSUIPC action is to use Mouse Macros.
Please refer to FSUIPC documentation to learn how to use Mouse Macros.

To use a virtual button simply select the virtual joystick number and the related virtual button number.

These numbers coincide with the ones you can find in FSUIPC interface.

Use “Send button to Flight Sim” for quick data entry programming FSUIPC.

To program keyboard emulation key click get keys and follow the guide prompted in the popup window:


The Maddog has no customizable options. When Maddog Special Mode is active please use only your Multipanel to set Heading, Course, Altitude, IAS and Vertical Speed.

NAV1 and NAV2 Radio Panel mode is also tweaked when Special Mode is active to emulate MD-8x Nav radios (no active/standby switch).

Activating the Maddog Special Mode any setting applied to the Multipanel are overridden with exceptions for the flaps and the trim wheel.

This is the function mapping:


PMDG Boeing 737 NGX
The NGX is a much more sophisticated “Special Mode” offering room for many customizations.

It’s possible to assign any 737 MCP button to each Multipanel button, so you can choose the most useful MCP functions you need.

Using both Short and Long-Click it’s possible to map 16 MCP buttons to the Multipanel.
Buttons backlit is linked to the function bound with Short-Click, so take care to choose short-click for those function where backlit is needed.

Course 1 or 2 is also selectable; this is useful if you own more Multipanels.

Acceleration sliders has different effects using the NGX Special Mode, the NGX manage the increments by itself, so a kind of acceleration in already embedded and, as far as we know, it’s not customizable.

Finally, consider that when the NGX Special Mode is active all functions are still overridable!

So be sure that “FSUIPC Offset Change” is set for each Multipanel function (unless you’re searching some special setup).

For example: using a yoke quadrant lever for the flaps frees the Multipanel flap switch for other functions (may be the landing light bar ?).
Same consideration is valid for the trim wheel, which could be used for the V/S MCP wheel as well).

For other specific SPAD Multi Panel Configuration settings read one of the articles.


Connecting USB devices

You must connect the Saitek modules to on board USB.: Radio Panel(s), Switch Panel and Multi Panel. All other: TPM, TQ, Trim wheel can be connected to the USB positions of the Yoke.

Check in the device manager if the Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power checkbox is UNCHECKED ! …and check ALL the HID interfaces.



Using profiles you can bind specific settings for each aircraft you use. When Spad is running for the first time, only 1 profile is available called “Default”.
Profiles are managed directly from this main window:

Press the button Manage Profiles.
Here you can add the profiles you need and bind your aircraft to the correct profile double clicking the desired aircraft.

Aircraft cannot be added to the list since the list is populated automatically when a new aircraft is used in Flight Simulator.

If the option “When a new aircraft is detected …ask for a profile to bind” is selected, you’ll be prompted every time a new aircraft is loaded for the first time.
In this window you can select an existing profile or type in a brand new profile name.

If a new profile is selected it will be filled with default values. The next time this aircraft is used the profile will be selected automatically. You can set the current profile from the main SPAD window as well.

In the beginning…there is one -default- profile which is shown in the Profiles List. Next to the Profiles tab, you will find the detected aircraft with an overview in the Aircraft List. When you single left click subsequently on the aircraft, you can read the profile that is assigned to this aircraft.

When you double click an aircraft you can change the link to its profile. When there is only the default profile you must make a profile before you can attach an aircraft to it.

So, back to the previous window and select Add new Profile which profile name must be inserted in the pop-up window. Close with OK, the new profile will be listed. Now go back to the Aircraft tab, double click your Cessna and attach it to the profile as required.
Note: no spaces or special characters!


If you want to bind a PMDG NGX to a (new) profile, set the radio bullet to PMDG NGX and press Add new Profile in the SPAD Profile Configuration window. After that action you can address the functions in the Multi Panel Configuration window.



The BIP is the only panel that doesn’t work without configuration. There’s no default so you have to setup which “tiles” are installed on your BIP. Press the Setup button and you will enter the BIP Panel Configuration page.

First you have to select which “tile” you want to edit by clicking on it.

Currently selected tile is highlighted with a thicker border –> When a “tile” is selected the lower part ot the window shows detail about the currently selected tile.

Let’s explore in what happens selecting the FUEL LOW tile in the first tile.

“Tiles” functions are grouped by sections like: Engines, Fuel, Gear and so on.
When a function is clicked the description frame shows a brief description of what that function does.
If description starts with “Custom tile” means the selected tile is not included in the standard set. Meaning you have to build it by yourself.

“Standard mode supported “ means the function is read through FSUIPC so it should be available to standard aircrafts, this mode is used when no “Special mode” is active.

“NGX mode supported” means the function is read through the PMDG NGX SDK so it’s available when NGX “Special mode” is active in current profile.

If a function has a tunable threshold the range is described here.
The threshold slider is shown only if the selected function is threshold based.
The “Tile Color” buttons are shown only for standard (not combined ) tiles.
Combined tiles use more color for the same function: for example see: LEFT GEAR
In previous example we have set the first tile to turn on yellow light if the total fuel level drops below 15%.


Understanding thresholds
Some annunciator panel lights are related to discrete events like DOOR WARNING or PITOT HEAT. Other are related to changing values. Let’s take ENG OIL TEMP by example.
ENG OIL TEMP turns on if the engine oil is hot. But what does “hot” mean ? It depends on the aircraft specs, “hot” may have different values on a Cessna 172 or on a Boeing 737.
This is the reason for thresholds.

In this example we can see the ENG OIL TEMP case.
Description tells us than the threshold scales from 0°C to 200°C.
We set a 65% threshold, this means that the light is switched on (yellow) when oil temperature exceeds 130°C (65% of 200°C) which is correct for a Cessna C172.
Using a Boeing 737 the correct value would be 82% (164°C).


SPAD was initial developed by Massimo early 2010. Due to time constrains development of SPAD has come to an end. We like to thank Massimo for his excellent work and contribution to the flight sim community.
When you want to visit the old SPAD forum.

The source code is released; continous development is in place. Read the SPAD.neXt page

April 1st 2014
Souce code released.
Spad deserves a new maintainer, and; Yes ! I know it’s april the 1st… but the source code is seriously released 🙂

v0.5.1 July 22nd,2012
New Features:
– Profile import. Added ability to import setups from other profiles.

– Added “A/P P/RST”, “A/T P/RST” and “FMC P/RST” tiles (these tiles are PMDG NGX Specific).
– New fancy higher resolution icon. 🙂
– Moved BIP Setup color preview from main form to setup form.

Bug Fixes:
– Fixed NGX support for “FUEL LOW” BIP tile.
– Fixed the Virtual Button 7-15-23-31 bug. (OMG this was a very old one !).
– Fixed a Virtual Button bug in Switchpanel routines (….. another old one).


v0.5.0 July 14th, 2012
New Features:
– BIP Support.
– Multipanel Course selection: fixed CRS1 / CRS2 (for use with multiple panels) or selectable through Radiopanel.

– SpecialModes now are bound to a “Profile” instead of a “Multipanel”. ===>>> CHECK YOUR CONFIG <<<===
– Engine selection using Radiopanel selector extended to: magnetos selector, ALT, FUEL PUMP, DE-ICE and COWL.
– Added new ADF Active/Standby modes. Especially suitable for the NGX.
– Switchpanel support for NGX:  added Gear and Lights support.
– Multipanel support for NGX: added “A/P P/RST”, “A/T P/RST” and “FMC P/RST” buttons.
– User interface position check (no more invisible user interface when a screen is removed/repositioned).
– Improved Radiopanel knob smoothness.
– Huge USB performance improvement (much better responsiveness using many panels especially on slow 1.1 USB ports).
– SPAD now quits correctly during Windows shutdown.

Bug Fixes:
– Fixed Radiopanel barometric regulation when NGX Special Mode is active.
– Fixed a problem switching between profiles with and without SpecialMode.
– Fixed COWL switch orientation (previously inverted).
– Fixed a bug in engine selection. Now ony Radiopanel1 change the engine.
– Fixed a bug preventing rotary knob acceleration to work on lower Radiopanel knob.
– Fixed COM2 standby frequency rounding bug


v0.4.3 June 6th, 2012
New Features:
– Added PMDG NGX Special Mode for Multipanels ===>>> PLEASE !!!! READ THE MANUAL TO ENABLE THIS FEATURE <<<===

Bug Fixes:
– Fixed gear warning lights on Switchpanels using Prepar3D


v0.4.2 June 3rd, 2012
New Features:
– Added support for Lockeed Martin Prepar3D

Bug Fixes:
– Fixed panels detection routine. No more duplicated panels.


Bug Fixes:
– Fixed a silly bug breaking the engine starter selector on Switch Panels
– Added a link to the manual

New Features:
– Special Modes, a new way to manage the MultiPanel. Basically Spad controls Special Modes through specific aircraft SDK instead of FSUIPC.
Actually available only for the Leonardo Maddog, next release will include the LevelD 767. Other aircraft may be included if an SDK is available.
===>>>> PLEASE, read the manual for details about Special Modes <<<<<=========
– Added Long and short Click support for the Radio and Multi Panel. Click threshold is customizable in General Options window.
– Added support for ADF1 / ADF2
– Added engine selection for Switch Panel starter selector
– windows are no more centered on the screen, instead last position is stored in spad.ini (should fix a problem with extremely high resolution display)
– Added a check to avoid loading of multiple instances.
– Changed ACT/STBY button behaviour in XPDR mode ===>>>> PLEASE, read the manual for details <<<<<=======
– Altimeter regulation is now by 1 mBar step in mBar mode
– Improved manual

Bug Fixes:
– Fixed a frequency rounding bug on radio panels
– Fixed a bug in ADF mode not using acceleration for outer knob
– Fixed crash double-clicking tray icon when a modal window is open
– Fixed many minor user interface visualization bugs

– added retractable gear detection for FSX and a flag to disable gear warning lights on FS9 for aircraft without retractable gear
– added panels switch off when Avionics Master or Battery is off.
– changed the default data modified by de-ice switch (now the switch manages anti-ice or carb heater from engine 1 to engine 4)

– added ad option to set DME Time or DME Speed in Radio Panel DME Mode

– fixed a bug in automatic affinity setup. Now on 4 or more cores cpu affinity is set correctly.
– fixed a bug crashing spad on selector change when multiple Radio Panels are connected
– fixed a visualization bug when multiple panels of the same type are connected

– Added the TAB key as a qualifier for keystrokes emulation. Needed for compatibility with LevelD aircrafts.
New features:
– added full profiles support with automatic Aircraft detection (config file structure is changed)
– added a status bar to show FSUIPC status and version, FS version and aircraft currently in use
– added trim and flaps reverse
– added altimeter regulation scale customization (toggle, fixed hPa or fixed inHg)
– added setting to autostart spad when windows start and autoquit when Flight Simulator stops.
– added capability to manage process priority and affinity mask. (needed for smooth operation on certain systems)
– added DME multiple display modes: DME1 and DME2 – DME1 Distance and speed – DME2 Distance and speed
– added ADF frequency step setting

– completely rewritten acceleration algorithm, now the setting is more progressive and acceleration response more predictable
– FSUIPC virtual button speed greatly improved.
– added a button to send FSUIPC Virtual Buttons event to Flight Simulator. This feature is needed by FSUIPC Button learning function

Bug Fixes:
– fixed frequency stepping in radio panel, matching now real world radios (COM 25Khz, NAV 50Khz)
– Removed some exception traps to better address libraries problems
– added automatic installation tool
– Fixed bug crashing Spad when rotary are moved before fs start
v0.2 – 20100206
– Greatly improved rotary knob responsiveness
– Better tuned Trim responsiveness
– Fixed Multipanel missed keyboard event bug
– Fixed Trim orientation bug
v0.1 – 20100206
– First public release

Saitek Yoke – Internal wiring broken

Sometimes you think you have a bargain. But it turns out that the wiring is cut. With these images, we can help you on your way to a working yoke. Click on the image to enlarge the text inside.

You will find 3 little cable trees, marked I – II and III. In this case the cable tree III was cut and a white wire  in cable tree I was missing in the shaft. The left handle of the yoke (where the knob E is) has a cable tree with 8 wires. The middle one and the right cable tree have 10 wires. Pull slightly on the wire to observe which bundle is moving. Be careful moving the wiring.

After restoration you have 2 wires which are not connected: a purple from string I and an orange wire from string III. Put a wrap on the cable bundle to prevent breaking the wires from the printed board caused by moving the yoke.

The external power connection EN=yellow to TP3 VBUS EN     +5V=red     GND=blackColor codes used for wiring:
0=black 1=brown 2=red 3=orange 4=yellow 5=green 6=blue 7=purple 8=grey 9=white

Switch Panel

The Switch panel works simply like expected. Every switch controls the related function.
Pay attention to switch position when starting SPAD: Switch Panel can’t be interrogated about switch position, every switch state is passed to SPAD when the first switch changes, so after the first change every function is set according to switches positions.

The SPAD Switch Configuration settings are discussed in the articles.

Using Flight Simulator 2004 SPAD is not able to detect if an aircraft is equipped with retractable landing gear. To let SPAD manage correctly the landing gear warning lights you have to specify if the aircraft in use has retractable gear. Using profiles it’s possible to set the correct gear setup for every aircraft. Configuration is foreseen on the Gear Warning section of the SPAD Switch Configuration window.

Many engine related functions can be configured to control all engines or only the currently selected engine.
To select an engine SPAD uses the Upper Row function selector position of the first Radiopanel:
Com1 = Engine 1 – Com2 = Engine 2 – Nav1 = Engine 3 – Nav2 = Engine 4

If you don’t have a Radiopanel you are not able to select a specific engine, so the “Apply single engine selection to” options are grayed out.