Technical Specifications

Joystick, Levers, & Switches

The standard FlyBox (BG-530) comes with a BG Systems' JF3 three-axis joystick which provides proportional analog outputs for pitch, roll, and yaw. A 2-axis version (BG-520) is also available.

The joystick generates electrical output from a Hall Effect sensor for each axis, which provides better performance and reliability than potentiometric systems. Two levers are mounted on the left side of the case, which are suitable for throttles, trim levers, etc. In the standard configuration the levers hold their position, but spring centered levers can be requested. The analog signals are all converted to digital with 12 bit resolution.

There are six latching and two momentary push buttons, which are backlit when depressed, and a trigger switch on the joystick. The configuration of latching and momentary push buttons can be customized for special orders.

Communications Protocol

RS-232 serial protocol without hardware handshaking, supported by most operating systems.

Software Interface

Source code, written in C, is provided on CD and includes all functions needed to configure and sample the FlyBox. The software is fully compatible with BG Systems CerealBox®, which allows actual vehicle controls to be connected to the CerealBox as a direct replacement for a FlyBox.

Platforms Supported

The FlyBox has been tested on several Unix workstations (SGI, Sun, DEC, Harris), Macintosh, Linux platforms, and "Wintel" computers. Consult BG Systems if you have a platform not listed.

Update Rates

Depending on the baud rate, update rates between 30-100 Hz can be achieved.

Baud Rate Supported

The FlyBox can run at baud rates between 2400 and 115200 bps.

Power Requirements

Power can be switched between 110 and 220 volts.

External Inputs

Three DB-9 connectors on the back of the case allow three additional analog inputs. A fourth DB-9 allows eight additional discrete inputs. Pin 8 on the analog connectors carries 5 vDC which can be used to power external devices. External input voltages must be between 0-5 volts.


The dimensions of the case are 14" x 11" x 5" (356 x 279x 127mm), and the joystick adds an additional 7.5" (190mm) to the height of the FlyBox.


Several optional configurations are available for the FlyBox. Options include a two-axis joystick (BG-520), and a variety of pushbuttons that are thumb actuated.

Cables and Connections

The FlyBox is connected to the computer with a 25 foot cable. The standard serial cable provided is a PC-DB-9 "null-modem" cablle. MiniDIN-8 and SGI Onyx DB-9 cables can be ordered. Cables up to 500 feet have been tested.


Twelve months