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Logitech Wingman to Tempest2K paddle controller?

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I recently acquired a Logitech Wingman from a local thrift store and am trying to convert it for use as a Tempest2K paddle controller. The Wingman is a PC joystick with a paddle knob on the left side. My guess is that the paddle allowed you to whip around 180 degrees in a first-person multiplayer game.


The first picture attachment, Wingman1.jpg, shows the Wingman in a hacked-up state. The joystick has been removed but I was unable to disassemble the knob unit from the case.


The second picture attachment, Wingman2.jpg, is a close-up of the paddle knob along with how much I paid for it (about $10). The knob is a flywheel based paddle that allows for precise fingertip control. Very nice and damn near perfect for Tempest2K.


The third picture attachment, Wingman3.jpg, shows the optical sensor unit underneath the flywheel. The rough hole near the bottom was an attempt to get at the shaft for future application of WD-40. Unfortunately, the shaft is encased in plastic. For application of WD-40 I will have to stick the tube between the knob and the case and let the WD-40 seep into the shaft.


The fourth picture, GenButton.jpg, shows a Sega Genesis joypad. I plan to try to graft the button section into where the joystick was on the Wingman and use those as the fire buttons for Tempest2K.


This all leads to my big question: Is there any way to use the knob for Tempest2K using a Jaguar joypad as an interface? I figured where ground goes (on the sensor device by the flywheel) and maybe where +5VDC goes but I can't seem to figure out the rest. Is there any schematics for the Wingman? Is there anybody who has successfully converted a "wagon wheel" based device for use for Tempest2K?


Any help would be appreciated. It would make for one extremely cool controller hack project if I can solve this problem.





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(Fixed the picture order reversal. Starting to get the hang of things here.....)

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Not sure how much research you've done on the Net, but here's the info from the Jaguar FAQ on how to wire up a rotary controller to the Jaguar controller:


Q. What's this about a rotary controller? What games use it? How do I make

one for myself?


A. TEMPEST 2000 has hidden in it an option for a rotary controller (at the

"Game Options" menu, press Pause on both controllers to activate the

"Controller Type"). No plans for an official Atari rotary controller were

announced, but many TEMPEST fans have been trying to build such a

controller, to give the game a feel that's close to its arcade original.


Andy Light has written instructions for taking a Jaguar joypad and an

Atari 2600 Driving Controller and building a rotary controller with the

parts. His instructions are condensed below. READ THE INSTRUCTIONS

THOROUGHLY BEFORE ASSEMBLY -- there are some areas that are left to the

whim of the builder, and advance planning is highly recommended.


* * *



Parts needed: Atari Jaguar controller

Atari 2600 Driving Controller (NOT the paddles)

13 wires, preferably of separate colors


A board or box or shell to mount everything on/in


1. Open the driving controller by removing the two underside screws.

Inside is a top-like device or a grey box with three wires coming out of

it. This is the encoder. Pull the driving controller's knob off the

encoder's shaft, then remove the encoder by unscrewing the nut that holds

it in place. Disconnect the wires from the encoder.


2. Open the Jaguar controller. There are four screws on the bottom

holding it together, behind the round rubber pads. Inside the controller

are two circuit boards connected by a ribbon of wires. The bottom board

is for the numeric keypad and is held by two screws. Remove the screws

and take out the keypad.


3. Disconnect the wire ribbon from the keypad by melting the solder.

CAREFUL! This is delicate work -- get help if you need it. Solder the

thirteen wires where the ribbon connection was; do not confuse them.


4. From the left side of the board (the side that says "P2"), I've

numbered the wires as follows:

1) Common 5) Button A 9) Button C 13) Down

2) Right 6) Button B 10) Pause

3) Option 7) Button B 11) Up

4) Option 8) Button C 12) Left


5. On the encoder, connect wire #1 to the center terminal, #2 to the right

terminal, and #12 to the left terminal. The rotary part of the controller

is now finished.


6. How to connect the other controls is up to you. I'm using arcade

buttons, a thumbpad, and a switch (to toggle joypad or rotary control)

mounted in an Atari 5200 trak-ball controller case. You can mount a

joystick, extra buttons, or other features for your own controller.

Buttons and empty control boxes are available at stores such as Radio



Wiring for the other signals are as follows:

Up - wires #1 and #11 Button A - wires #1 and #5

Down - wires #1 and #13 Button B - wires #6 and #7

Pause - wires #1 and #10 Button C - wires #8 and #9

Option - wires #3 and #4

Because wire #1 has multiple uses, you will either need to string it or

split it for each destination.


7. Reassemble and mount everything according to your design. For better

spin, you can glue lead fishing sinkers to the inside of the knob, and

lubricate the shaft of the encoder with light oil or silicone lubricant.


That's it! Please forgive me for any mistakes in my grammer, terminology,

spelling, etc. If you encounter any problems, feel free to e-mail me at

[email protected] Good luck!


I've done the 2600 driving controller hack and it works OK, but the encoder on that Warrior looks pretty sweet. If you get it up and working let us know, it might be worth tracking one of those down to hack up :)


Also, rather than try to hack up a Genesis controller, it would probably be easier to try and adapt that rotary encoder to a Jaguar controller.

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Before you do anything else, you want to check if the output from that encoder is the same style as the encoders in the 2600 controllers - to me that looks like a mouse-style one with its own built-in decoder (spinning slotted wheel interrupts an IR beam).


The kind you want outputs as following:
















Personally I'd be very surprised if you could easily hack that into a working rotary if it doesn't follow the above standard - you'd do better buying a mechanical encoder from somewhere like Jameco or Digi-Key and installing it into the existing knob structure on that stick rather than attempting to convert an incompatible encoder format, IMHO.


Would love to see if you get it working though :)



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Umm... that board is probably just cleaning up the signals, converting the output of the LDR's into a nice clean pair of squarewaves, in which case it should be easy to hook up if the voltages are a suitable level, and if not, a simple matter to add some transistors so they are (not that Im an electronics geek, just had a little expierence with rotary encoding 8)). A mechanical one would be easier to integrate, but less sensitive... you might think however an optical one is too sensitive, most are very very sensitive and tempest has no calibration.

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I tried hooking it up the way it was stated in the FAQ just to see what would happen but had little success. Didn't surprise me. I will probably do a Google search on the Wingman and see if I can track down some technical info on it. I doubt there is any on the web but you never know.....


I plan to graft the Genesis buttons onto the Wingman and use a 9-pin cable which will hook up to a Jaguar joypad that will have a 9-pin plug hacked into it. This joypad will serve as an interface to the Jaguar unit itself and also allow me to use the keypad, pause, and option buttons.


The joypad would look very similar to my PlayStation interface like it is shown in Interface1.jpg attached in this reply.


InterJoy1.jpg and InterJoy2.jpg shows my hacked up single button joystick and a homebrew two button arcade joystick, respectively, hooked up to the PlayStation interface. I use this to play around with my Namco Museum discs (I have all five), Midway Arcade Classics, and Activision Anthology. The arcade stick is wired just like the Sega Master System joypad and will work on the Atari 2600, Commodore 64, and Amiga.




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(Did away with the double post to save loading time)

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How in the world did I manage to do a double post?.......


Anyway, I did a Google search for technical info on the Wingman but came up empty.


However, I did find one guy who managed to replace the analog stick with a arcade stick.....


But the biggest find was www.oscarcontrols.com. Here they make paddle controllers for MAME projects and recently released the Vortex Spinner which is a better version of the ORIGINAL Tempest paddle controller! Sadly, they did not list the price but hopefully it is not too expensive. They did also mention something about a interface board so this is one direction I am going to head in to try to make the Wingman into a Tempest controller.


By the way, is it possible to talk to the programmer of Tempest 2000 (Jeff Minter I believe)? He might be able to shed a little light here since he programmed the game.

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Made a mistake.


Oscar Controls does have a listing of prices for their parts. I just didn't dig far enough.


The spinner costs $59.00 and the knob (which is sold seperately) costs $16.00. This way you can use any knob you want (from several presented including the original Tempest version). Not too bad price wise.


But they do also sell a universal optic board that may be useful. I will try to go down to the local arcade parts place (where I got my arcade parts for my homebrew arcade stick) to see if they have one. Sells for less than $10. I will see if it can be used in conjunction with the Wingman.

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I think you're over-thinking things here...


Firstly, forget all about the interface boards from mame projects... the interface boards they use are for converting the raw data from the spinners used in arcade machines (similar to bus mice), into usb or ps2 mouse signals, so they can use arcade parts connected to a pc, which is not what you want to do at all.


The Jaguar wants and needs a simple two bit code, on the left and right direction bits. If you were using a manual encoder it would be a simple matter to connect them, center pin to the apropriate common leg (the jag controller has 4 commons with 6 output pins each), and the left and right legs of the encoder to the left and right output pins.


Since you're using an optical encoder, you've got a little more work to do... the sytem needs power, for the led's, and the signals that come from the ldr's need to be cleaned up... but the end result should be two signals which trace a pair of squarewaves as the shaft turns... their outputs are most likely constant (tied to 5v instead of the common pin) and so you probably want to use them (via some resistors) to switch some transistors connecting the commmon line to the output pins. None of this *should* be too dificult (since I suspect the cleanup code is on the little board with the detector). The first step is to work out what that little assembly actually outputs, and what the other lines are for... get out a multimeter (or better, a silly-scope) and have a look at its outputs.


Once you know what that assembly is doing, and once you understand what the jaguar expects it to do, you'll have a better understanding of how best to convert the signals from one to the other.


Or... you could just wait for me to produce another batch of my rotaries for sale 8)


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I'll try to gently pry the board from the holder and take a closer look at the traces and see what is what. Then I'll open one of my extra Jag joypads and hook up some wires and see what happens.


I probably got a little too excited about finding the Tempest paddle clone. Up until now I thought that the only way you could obtain one is to get one from a dead Tempest unit. The only reason someone has started making them again is because of MAME and classic games collections. The universal optic board can be used for both MAME and the original arcade game (if you have one sitting in your garage). I may still try to get one of the optic boards and examine it. At the very least it will give me an excuse to go down the the arcade parts shop and see what other goodies they have (it has been awhile since I have been there). If I can get the Wingman to work with Tempest 2K then maybe later I will try to get my hands on the Vortex Spinner and make a REAL arcade controller. :)


Interesting rotary joypad there Tyrant. Does it use the Indy 500 controller or is it a optical device?

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Did another double post. How is this happening?

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Interesting rotary joypad there Tyrant. Does it use the Indy 500 controller or is it a optical device?

Thanks :). It uses a manual encoder, but a 36 step one, which is much more precise than the 2600 driving controllers, which I think are only about 4 or 8 step. The knob has a slight detent effect, which makes it easy to use on the menus and bonus stages, and yet dosnt interfere with gameplay at all imvho. If you have a search on this forum, you'll find a lot of more detailed reviews and descriptions of my controllers. I havnt made any for quite a while, but I'll try to get some more made soon as a few people have been asking about them recently, but they take quite a while to do and I've been very busy recently.

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