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Landing Gear Free Fall Handle Discussion

(Original thread started on 06-22-10 by Ron Rollo)

The landing gear free fall handle was something that I have been thinking about from early on because it is one of those mechanical items within the TQ pedestal.  Better to come up with a solution early than to revisit it later on down the road.  Here is the best photo that we have to date:

Ron 1003


I just finished up my Landing Gear Free Fall Handle and it turned out better than I hoped for. It is a shame that we will hardly ever use this handle because it operates so well.  After looking at the few pictures that we have of this little guy, I discovered that there is a shift gate like those used for the flaps and spoiler! I could clearly see the lower lock and had to assume that there would be one at the top. So when it is in the up position, it is locked and will not fall unless one of the pilots pulls it aft and then pushes it down. Same thing for bringing it back up but you won't care because if you ever do have to drop it, your having an oh $&@# moment. Maintenance will more than likely be responsible for bring it back up.


The gate was cut with the CNC and I have the file if one of you guys who have a CNC would like to make this part. The lever is galvanized metal. I had to grind it down from one inch wide to 7/8th inch wide. I also had to pound a pin into the lever. The pin rides in the gate.  I put my switch at the top but really, it should be down at the bottom end. This way, the gear will not start to fall until the lever is locked in the down position:

Ron 1004


I used a moderate strength spring to pull the lever towards the nose. The pivot point in the lever is oval so that the bolt travels about 1/4 inch when the lever is pulled aft:

Ron 1005


"UP" position:

Ron 1006


"Something bad is happening" position:

Ron 1007


NOTE:  If you have not yet built your TQ Pedestal, check out this thread HERE


If anyone is interested in either a completed Landing Gear Free Fall Handle or one in kit form, just let me know. I can whip them up pretty quick!



I started some of the finishing work on the TQ pedestal and thought it would be a good idea to add this small final touch to the Free Fall Handle.  But first, I relocated the switch to the bottom of the gate. This only make sense because you would not expect anything to start happening until the free fall handle is moved and locked into the lower position:

Ron 1008


In my mind, the real cover plate that is attached to the inside of the TQ pedestal is a little more complicated than the one I made here. I used 1/64" thick aluminum sheeting to make this part. For my simulator, it serves two purposes. First off, when you look at it from the co pilot's seat, you see a plate inside instead of a bunch of wires and stuff. Second, I do not want any wires or cables to get caught in the moving parts of the free fall handle:

Ron 1009


It has a lower tab, an upper tab and a middle tab that is bent to make attachment points:

Ron 1010


As Eric would say, "The money shot!" It is just another small step to having things completed.


(Posted by Shane Barnes on 10-02-10)

Great looking addition Ron! I like that return spring idea and the gate is awesome. Really like that cover plate too. What did you use to cut the aluminum?


(Posted by Ron Rollo on 10-03-10)

Shane, I used a pair of heavy duty scissors. The aluminum is very thin and you would think that it is not going to be strong enough to do the job. But once you screw it to the TQ, it is solid!


Anyone know the offset for the free fall handle by chance?


(Posted by Ron Rollo on 06-01-12)

I have developed a free fall handle in kit form and I have two kits available. If you have the right side of your TQ built to spec, this will fit inside it perfectly.  This handle has a positive lock at the top and at the bottom of the gate which requires the pilot to pull the handle aft and then down.  This extra step keeps anyone (the copilot most likely) from accidentally activating the lever to the down position.


Outside view of the TQ pedestal:

Ron 1011


Inside view:

Ron 1012


One Landing Gear Free Fall kit pictured:

Ron 1013

Not that you will ever use this in normal flight conditions, but this is one of those little things that adds realism to the overall build.  Now to get it implemented properly using FSUIPC.  If you have yours working or would like some help getting yours programmed please post here.


(Posted by Shane Barnes on 01-21-13)

I know it is listed in FSX as Gear_Emergency_Handle_Toggle and the number is 66726 but I don't think that is the offset. If you are programming it thru FSUIPC search for the listing Gear_Emergency etc. If setting thru InterfaceIT . . not sure


I don 't remember if I used an FSUIPC offset, mouse macro, or the button control in FS for " landing gear (extend manually). You can find the landing gear - extend manually under settings, controls, buttons in FS. I am thinking there is also an offset in FSUIPC, look for something similar to gear freefall or landing gear freefall or gear.


Some additional info for you. A while back I was playing around with getting the fuel crossflow to work. I finally found a way to select the different tanks on the Lear and have fuel only draw from that tank thru FSUIPC offsets but the offsets were not listed under a name that you would think. Instead I found that the offsets for reciprocating engine fuel select would control the separate tanks. These are listed in a separate post under fuel x flow.


To get to my point, some of the controls that we thought were not modeled or did not work correctly may be due to the offsets used by the creator of the FS Lear, in the case of the X-flow, they had used offsets for a reciprocating engine instead of jet so in some instances, if you do some testing with different offsets, you might find that you can get some functionality out of them.