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sd_flyer

Considering buying HOTAS Warthog for XP11

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Just want to hear impressions/recommendation of happy and perhaps not very happy owners. Thanks

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Are you looking to fly fixed wing or helis?  The Warthog has a bit of a center detent that I found threw off my fine control when flying helicopters, but it was fine for fixed wing.  There are some online tutorials on how to smooth out the center, but this involves disassembly and careful sanding, and lubrication of the ball at the base of the joystick - probably a warranty voider.

Cheers,
Phil

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It's what I use, and it's a great setup. Especially if you fly a mix of civilian and military planes, helicopters, or the occasional space sim.

The materials and craftsmanship is on a different level than other consumer joysticks. Very high quality, and very stable encoding (no "spiking" of input).

The only minor complaint I have, is that due to the throttle quadrant's modeling on a real A-10 throttle, there aren't as many analog rotary knobs as I'd like. I manage to work around it with the available switches, and there sure are a lot of them!

FWIW, I don't use the Thrustmaster T.A.R.G.E.T. software for programming, I find XP11's control settings work fine. But that's available if you want to use the more advanced features, like throwing the controls into different modes that alter the switch functions. As a basic set of controllers, XP11 will recognize all the switches and axes without that intermediate software.

Regarding the spring tension -- the Warthog joystick does have a stronger spring pressure when moving the stick very far from center, compared to other joysticks I've used like the CH Fighterstick. In a combat sim like Rise of Flight, that's useful for simulating the feel of control surface pressure. You learn to feel how far to go before stalling out in a turn, as a learned response since there is no actual force feedback. However, that spring tension is a bit heavy for civilian GA flying. It's also very tiring when flying helicopters in manual mode.

There is a good solution though, if you don't mind a DIY mod. You just remove the big mainspring. It's very easy to do, and completely reversible if you don't like it. After the mod, the stick has a loose and "floppy" feel, while still retaining a very slight self-centering action from the remaining smaller springs. This is perfect for flying helicopters, and feels good flying fixed wing with a high degree of precision.

Here's the YouTube clip for the mod. I'm sure this voids the warranty, try at your own risk, yada, yada... but it is reversible. Note: you don't have to remove the base plate like this video shows:

 

 

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I don't have XP11, but I do have the Warthog.  Unless you have the means to get into GoFlight or Yoko the Yoke territory it's the best value out there in my opinion.  I deliberated long and hard on this two years ago and decided I could either spend $200 for Saitek junk bound to wear out within months (read the Amazon reviews on the X55 and X56) or $400 for quality that will most likely outlive me.  I have not been disappointed with my decision.

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Thank you for replies.

Yes I know it's expensive, but since I'm not planning to do any upgrades to my airplane this year I figured I can spare some money for virtual flying. After all it only takes me 8 hours of flight instruction to afford it LOL 

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I for one love mine.. As for Heli's, only purchase the one's that have force trim.. Other than that, the unit seems to work with everything and no spiking..

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I have been using the Warthog combo for 18 months now. It has been excellent. I find that the feel/touch of the metal joystick adds a much greater sense of realism. The throttle quadrant is a thing of beauty to use (though as mentioned some more rotary switches would have been nice).

I did find the spring tension too much though to allow sensitive adjustment of the flight surfaces. Not only does it require a fair amount of force to move but this give it a really strong centre detent feeling that I found unrealistic. Removing the large spring as in the video solved this but then I found the artificial feeling too soft. Also due to the heavy weight of the grip it tends to sag forward under its own weight.

One solution to this is to find beefier replacement springs for the small ones as shown in the video. You have to be careful though as if you beef them up too much they don't compress as far and you will loose travel. In the end I cut down my main heavy spring and found a suitable level of resistance. Obviously doing this is definitely going to void the warranty and is totally not reversible.

Regards Michael

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