Introduction: Thrustmaster Ebrake

In this instructable I am going to be showing you how to make an affordable yet stylish Ebrake for a racing sim rig.

Step 1: Required Materials

  1. Philips Screwdriver
  2. Craft knife
  3. PVC Ducting Pipe
  4. A cheap usb joystick... I used Thrustmaster USB Joystick to match the wheel.
  5. A set of motorbike handlebar grips
  6. Some thermoplastic (hand moulding plastic) or sugru (expensive option)

Step 2: Dissassembling the Joystick

Remove the four screws on the side of the joystick and the casing should come away from the shaft.

To remove the casing completely you will have to remove the two screws holding the circuit board for button 4 in place.

Remove the bottom plate off the joystick so you can get to the circuit board.

Desolder/cut the wires that go through the shaft so they are no longer connected to the main circuit board and remove the wires by pulling them through the shaft of the joystick.

You should now be left with just the housing, the shaft and the zaxis throttle control.

Step 3: Blanking Plate

Cut a circle out of the PVC with a 50mm diameter, this is going to be used to only allow the stick to move along half of one axis.

To cut the circle out I recommend using a craft knife that has been heat on the stove for a about half a minute. If, like me, you have a metal handled craft knife; I recommend wearing a pair of gloves to protect your hands.

Drill four holes about 2.5mm from the edge these will be used to screw the PVC plate to the joystick.

Next, using a hot knife again, cut a space that is a couple of millimeters wider than the shaft of the joystick, but long enough to allow enough space for the joystick to be pulled fully towards you.

My cut was not the prettiest but it works.... Also if you have access to it I would use aluminium sheet as it will look better.

Place the plate over the shaft so that it fits against the base of the joystick nicely.

Use the four holes you drilled earlier as a guide to now drill four holes in the base of the joystick.

This plate can be left as is or can be painted... I used black enamel paint to paint the top side and allowed it to dry before placing it on the joystick.

Step 4: Fitting the Grip to the Shaft

The motorbike grips are squishy in the rubbery area and therefore you will want to pack them with thermoplastic or sugru... I used thermoplastic as it is a hell of a lot cheaper.

The first thing you will want to do is remove the little knobly bits of the side of the shaft with a hacksaw or a pliers.

Boil some water and pour it into a bowl.

Leave it for a minute to cool.

pour in some pellets into the water... they should turn clear and clump together (use more than you think you will need)

remove the plastic from the water and shake of any excess water as to not scald your hand when molding.

roll the plastic out into a long sausage shape.

push the plastic inside the handlebar grip (use the motorbike grip that has the narrower hole inside.

leave about an inch of the sausage sticking out of the end of the shaft after pushing it in all of the way (this well help the joystick shaft fix more securely.

push the handlebar grip down onto the shaft so there is about a centimeter gap from the handlebar to the joystick housing (this will allow for more movement.)

Leave the plastic to cool for ten minutes, then plug and play.