Where's the trim control in Arma???

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wmetcalf
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January 21st, 2020, 12:09 pm

Hey guys, Recently replaced my worn 25 year old CH CombatStick with a CH FlightStick. Reviews complained newer versions - the FighterStick - now had less reliable components. The simpler FlightStick supposedly doesn't. Have been using it without issues for heli flying the last few days. Seems to be the same ole' CH quality. In case this one didn't pan out I also ordered a backup which I accidentally came across while looking for my CH replacement. It's the VKB Sims Gladiator 2 out of Europe. It's a really high quality unit that houses a self-contained throttle slider, which I prefer instead of having a second device taking up the left side of my desk space. Since it's supposedly an accurate copy of a WW2 stick that was used in the BF109 and other aircraft of that time, it doesn't have the proliferation of up-top buttons as seen on more current consumer-level sticks. It has something like 18 possible button assignments, but these buttons are all clustered around the base as opposed to being up on the stick itself (there is a button and an 8-way hat).

I have become accustomed to having 2 roll wheels for trim adjustment on the CH units. I noted before purchasing the Gladiator, that it's only slider was the throttle, but I assumed I could just assign trim functions to one of the many buttons at the base of the Gladiator. WRONG! I tried all sorts of button and combo assignments in Arma - I even tried assigning adjustment to the hat switch - a seemingly logical choice. None of this gave me any manual control of trim. Then it got worse. I decide to try the default Arma keyboard assignments as a cross check, and quickly discovered that there seems to be no manual trim adjustments at all in Arma, unless you have a stick with additional sliders, which basically just physically modify the X and Y axis' inside the stick housing. I assumed that assigning trims to buttons would simply require taps to adjust, but as far as I can tell there is no trim effect at all in Arma, even using Arma's own default [left control+NUM 2 or NUM 8].

I next experimented a bit with the "set trim" keys, which I don't really understand the function of. I thought maybe you held your stick at the desired angle and then hit this switch to hold trim at that position. Uh-uh...That seemed to have no effect either. So OK - I'm at a loss here. Did I just spend an extra hundred bucks on a stick has no possibility for trim implementation in Arma? Have any of you been able to implement trim control in Arma without having trim wheels on your stick? Arma's own keyboard controls don't seem to do anything. Without trim controls in Arma you can never remove your hand from the stick, as changes in speed change the degree of lift and thus the aircraft's attitude. That makes a long flight across Altis a lot of work, and doesn't give you much of a chance to make any keyboard selections that require two hands.
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TuXeDo
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January 21st, 2020, 12:43 pm

So I did some testing. The arma trim settings are only used while in advanced flight model. Now once you have your trim set key binded, and your respective trim directions set (which the hat would work well however it requires repetitive input, you can't hold the input) it will work but it has a very slow incremental change. So it becomes difficult to trim the helo in a quick manner.
Edit: I also was able to get the trim set to work by holding the position on my joy stick and using the manual set bind as you mentioned. For the testing I used keyboard, joystick, and a mix of both key binds to confirm it would work across the board.
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wmetcalf
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January 21st, 2020, 4:40 pm

Bummer! I use only the standard flight model in-game. The stick-and-rudder input and the flight model feels satisfying enough for me (30-year private pilot with both rotorcraft and tail-dragger experience), and with the chaos and multitasking often required while in play I don't want to introduce the additional unforgiving risk the advanced model demands. It's more important to me to get my trusting passengers to the AO in one piece, than to kill everybody because I made a minor miscalculation upon landing (Arma Heli's are pretty easily damaged). I could see having the challenge of the Advanced model if I were in a hard core sim and operation of the aircraft was the main point.

Too bad about the Gladiator 2, It's really an excellent piece of gear - far better than the mediocre crop of consumer-level products now available. I've spent enough time in real cockpits that pushing a hundred buttons and manipulating a HOTAS has no appeal for me. Like the CH products, the throttle wheel on the Gladiator stick is enough for me. I just want the feeling that I'm having a believable low-n-slow stick-and-rudder flying experience, and I haven't seen any flight sim that does it better than the simple flight model used with a Heli on Arma's incredible maps. Guess I'll have to put the Gladiator aside and wait for Microsoft flight sim 2020. Maybe I can find use for it there. Thanks for the feedback. Will spare me from pulling out any more hair!
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January 21st, 2020, 7:02 pm

I know its not the same as trim control, but if you are looking at a slightly hands off flight mode (auto-pilot), you can try this: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/ ... 1439605692
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wmetcalf
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January 22nd, 2020, 8:55 am

Good suggestion, but a bit overkill for me. I only take my hand off the stick momentarily, as when I would have to activate CTRL+B to initiate a lift. Yes, that can be done with just one hand if you're nimble enough. Effective trim allows one to do things like zip full-speed across the water at 5 meters above the surface without continuously having to nudge the stick to avoid crashing.Interestingly, after initiating this discussion I thought I would re-visit the AFM and see what I thought about it now that I have much more experience. It only took a couple minutes to realize that AFM is not suited to these sticks that have a throttle wheel. Both the Gladiator and my two CH sticks don't even register throttle input until the throttle is moved up somewhere near the middle of their travel span (calibration doesn't change this). The AFM requires very fine, full-range travel adjustment to work effectively. On my sticks there is virtually no smooth transition through the mid-range. It's essentially just full on, or low/off, making it impossible to get smooth transitions. It seems one would have to use the keyboard for throttle control, or use a separate dedicated HOTAS-style unit with a much larger rheostat. Oddly, there IS a feeling of a smooth (if short) transition through the throttle range when using the Standard flight model.
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WilliamTesla
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January 22nd, 2020, 10:56 am

I also noticed the same with my own stick when using the advanced flight model, it took me about a week to realize what was wrong, and why I was having so many issues keeping altitude when attaching a vehicle to perform a heavy lift.

The transitions are not as bad as in your case, but I do have to go at around 70-80% throttle to notice an increment from 50% to more. I also didn’t find a way to fix it either with any settings, and now usually tend to disable the advanced flight model despite the advantages which it offers.
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wmetcalf
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January 22nd, 2020, 1:12 pm

I have been playing with the new Gladiator 2 for the last couple days, experimenting with whether or not I could live without trim control. I must say that the Gladiator seems to wander in pitch less than my CH sticks and doesn’t require as much stick force and adjustment to maintain attitude. It’s such a pleasant handling controller I’m feeling it might be worth the sacrifice of trim just for the satisfaction of using it. I now appreciate why CH used physical adjustment of the gimbals for trim. It doesn’t need the function in software. I am going to substitute my CH FlightStick again when I have some time, and see how effective it’s throttle rheostat is with the AFM. Not very, I would suspect, as it reacts very much the same as the Gladiator. Both require throttle positions quite near the center of the throw range even to get an engine start.
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wmetcalf
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January 27th, 2020, 12:10 pm

As expected, I booted up with my CH FlightStick. Same result with the AFM, sadly. Throttle responds pretty much the same as with the Gladiator. Guess that leaves people who want to use the AFM stuck with either using the tap, tap, tap of the keyboard, or a pricey and cumbersome HOTAS.
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WilliamTesla
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January 27th, 2020, 12:56 pm

Sad to hear that you didn't come up with a solution, though I do think that this is a useful topic as it wouldn't be the first time that there have been people in TS asking about having issues with their sticks, unable to correctly configure them, so, appreciate the time you took to research and trying to solve this!
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TuXeDo
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January 27th, 2020, 1:31 pm

To fix the throttle for smooth transition based on actual placement of the joysticks throttle, you must remove the throttle key binds and place them on the analog throttle key binds.
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WilliamTesla
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January 27th, 2020, 3:07 pm

TuXeDo wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 1:31 pm
To fix the throttle for smooth transition based on actual placement of the joysticks throttle, you must remove the throttle key binds and place them on the analog throttle key binds.
I'll try the fix, but interestingly enough for me it only becomes an issue if I use the advanced flight model, with the default arma 3 model the throttle is quite responsive and smooth.
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TuXeDo
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January 27th, 2020, 4:17 pm

WilliamTesla wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 3:07 pm

I'll try the fix, but interestingly enough for me it only becomes an issue if I use the advanced flight model, with the default arma 3 model the throttle is quite responsive and smooth.
Sorry yes once again this is something that is most noticeable in advanced. The default throttle controls when in advanced treats the throttle on a joystick as up and down buttons rather then a smooth positional switch. Which is what the analog controls will do.
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