I am Mechanical engineer. One day I thought that I want a flight simulator seat, but also I want to be able to work, watch movies, play other games and just relax in it. I started to design it. My main focus was affordability, easy to build and to look good. I had a design and started to build it in the end had to redesign half of it but the end result was everything I wanted. I didn’t have any experience with furniture, leather or even PVC, but it was super easy and looked professional in the end. So YOU can do it too!
Flight Sim Seat Diy (do it yourself)
Do it yourself Flight simulator seat pictures
Fully explained step by step guide. With all measurements. Part list.
Project example of DIY Flight sim seat
Tools needed (Links to best for this application)
Materials (links with best prices)
My setup (best price and quality ratio)
Story of making DIY Flight sim seat
I bought a Thrustmaster 16000M FCS flight pack. I was so happy. Connected everything bought Sturmovik battle of Moscow hoped in bf 109 and started learning. After 2 hours I was pissed my joystick is wobbling thrust is moving, pedals can’t stay in place. That was it, I bought Flight pack and after 2 hours I know it won’t be fun if I don’t have proper seat.
Next time I hopped into the game again was when everything was ready. Boy, I was amazed what difference it made. Flight stick was not moving at all thrust was also fixed and in so comfortable place, pedals where right were they have to be. The crazy part was when I turned to look at my six USSR planes I saw corner of planes chair which was almost exact to this seat. Before the seat I could not feel like in the plane, but now having it when I put my VR I actually after 2 min forget I am in the seat not in the plane.
Designing the seat And putting everything in 3D cad the seat looked like it would take a lot of space. Then I thought it was stupid to have a 1 seat for flight simulator, 1 seat for work or watching movies or playing other games. But I did not like the option of playing sim on an office chair so I knew I have to make something that will fit all. And I was right. Now I do everything in it. I am writing this text in it right now. Well, when you will be reading this I already will be done with it. I hope.
Next big thing for me was to make it not expensive. I spent a lot of money the Flight pack and now I have to make a chair. I was thinking about wood first, but you need power tools. You need to have place where to make it. Then I thought PVC! It’s not that cheap, but it is not that messy and you do not need power.. tools and it’s faster to work with. And I made it in a small room it did not take much space to make it. First, I was thinking making from 1″ 1/2″ diameter PVC, but it is much more expensive and it is a bit overkill. 1 inch PVC worked like a charm and was much cheaper. Every pipe size and place is in the instructions.
First, I was thinking connecting fittings and pipes with PVC glue, but it is so messy and If you spill primer on your wooden floor you are screwed you will never be able to clean it. Also If you leave fittings and pipe glued for 5 minutes you will never be able to remove it. So in the stage I was when the final product is far far away it was not for me. Then I thought ok I will drill holes put a screw and from other side nut with washer. The proper way. Well, it seams that Home Depot would have charged me about 100$ for screws. That’s not cheap. I looked at drywall screws then. It was like 3-4$ for a box of something like 300 screws. It worked like a charm. Everything holds in place. But before screwing it, I recommend to drill a small hole it is much faster and easier.
I was done with frame It was not super cheap, but I was happy with the price and definitely happy with the result.The next thing was from what to cut panels. I was looking at hard wood and other, stuff but it was too expensive. So I chose simple plywood and it worked well. It was sturdy the one thing I did not like was the look. But I knew I would make it look good somehow and I did. I fixed the plywood with same screw and to my surprise it is holding really well. I was done with the frame and panels. First time I could try sitting in it. Well, that was hard and uncomfortable. Sitting position and angle was good though.
The next part was thinking how to make it soft and comfy and nice. I really wanted leather feel. So I bought 3 yards of PU leather and 2 inch thick foam. Which was just enough. I guess it’s the engineering degree paying off. I have never worked with furniture, fabric, leather or foam. But it was super easy, just follow my guide of folds and you will get it also. Or you can contact me, I will gladly help you. And do you remember the ugly plywood I told you? It was just enough leather to wrap it and it looks really cool right now.
Finally, I was done. And until this day I love flying or just chilling in this seat.