Topics

ergonomic design of front panel

Tim Gorman
 

All,

Having looked at multiple pictures of front panel design for a ubitx it
appears many people put the tuning control on the far right of the
front panel and the audio i/o on the left side of the panel.

This is exactly opposite to what I laid out for my design (I haven't
drilled any holes yet!).

I like to use my left hand to tune while using my right hand on my CW
key so I thought it best to put the lcd in the middle of panel, the
tuning control on the left side, with the volume control/mic/speaker/key
on the right side of the panel.

I would welcome any suggestions concerning the ergonomics of various
layouts.

Oh, btw, it appears that tuning left/audio right would lessen the
distances for running cabling from the main circuit board to the front
panel - less chance of rfi among the various components.

Thanks,

tim ab0wr

Dennis Zabawa
 

I put the knob right in the middle of the panel with my function buttons arrayed around it.

Tim Gorman
 

Dennis,

I suspect you have a far more complicated setup than the basic ubitx -
perhaps the I2C Radiuno which frees up digital lines for other uses?

Doesn't your hand on the tuning dial get in the way of the display
however? My case is only about 2.5in high which doesn't leave much room
for your hand to access the tuning dial from below.

I'm not sure where you put your volume control?

tim ab0wr

On Tue, 27 Feb 2018 12:50:05 -0800
"Dennis Zabawa" <kg4rul@...> wrote:

I put the knob right in the middle of the panel with my function
buttons arrayed around it.

RCC WB5YYM
 

Middle
Bitx40 in background. uBITX build in front.

Tim Gorman
 

Curtis,

Nice job on lcd rectangle. How did you cut it out? Nibbling tool?
Dremel cutter?

tim ab0wr


On Tue, 27 Feb 2018 13:03:16 -0800
"RCC WB5YYM" <curtis03@...> wrote:

Middle
Bitx40 in background. uBITX build in front.

Nick VK4PP
 

HI Tim.
I really like your thinking here. I have mine the conventional way. But when I think about operation, I would be using my right hand for Mic/Key and left to tune/vol...
I might have to re-make my front panel.

It is an ALU case. But I figure I can just epoxy a new sheet of ALU or PCB over the front and start again...

73 NIck.

Tim Gorman
 

Nick,

I've never glued a piece of ALU over an ALU panel but I have done it
with a piece of single sided PCB.

tim ab0wr

On Tue, 27 Feb 2018 16:36:15 -0800
"Nik VK4PLN" <nickpullen@...> wrote:

HI Tim.
I really like your thinking here. I have mine the conventional way.
But when I think about operation, I would be using my right hand for
Mic/Key and left to tune/vol... I might have to re-make my front
panel.

It is an ALU case. But I figure I can just epoxy a new sheet of ALU
or PCB over the front and start again...

73 NIck.

 

Tim : 

I did something similar with the BITX40.

If you tune with your left hand and don't put the tuning Knob on the left that you will likely find that you obscure the display
when you are tuning. I use a Computer headset with my Bitx40 and it has long leads so I opted to put mic/phones/ptt and
key jack all on the back panel. IMHO the front panel is already busy enough with the display, tuning and volume etc. 
Attached is a photo of my BITX40 front panel. I intend to do something similar with my uBITX when I get around to it.

Cheers

Michael VE3WMB  

RCC WB5YYM
 

Tim, it was done with a drill, dremel, and finished with a file. Drilled a 1/4 inch hole at each corner inside the measured lines. Cut the straight parts with a dremel, and finished with a file. It is not perfect, but not hard once the measurements are done. 

Vic WA4THR
 

I put my display on the right primarily to avoid blocking the USB port on the Raduino with another control. I can quickly lift the lid on my BitX40 and plug in to adjust the sketch without having to move any components, and I have not had any issue with a hand blocking the display while I am tuning.

=Vic=
WA4THR

Michael Monteith
 

I totally agree with you Michael.  I think some realized it after they got things together.  I've seen them put the large 4 or 8 pin mic jacks next to the tuning knob.  That would drive me nuts.   Yours looks clean and smooth.   Ne mess cables in the front.  Even the side would be a better option than the front in my opinion. 

73, Michael
KM4OLT

Tim Gorman
 

Michael,

I like your layout. I am considering putting the on/off switch on the
back as well in order to keep it close to the power connector.

I have a bit larger case than yours. I have a four pin mic connector
that will mate with most of my older ham and cb microphones (mic +
ptt) so it probably needs to go up front. The cw key can easily be on
the back panel, that's a good idea.

Thanks,

tim ab0wr

On Tue, 27 Feb 2018 17:37:32 -0800
"Michael Babineau" <@ve3wmb> wrote:

Tim : 

I did something similar with the BITX40.

If you tune with your left hand and don't put the tuning Knob on
the left that you will likely find that you obscure the display when
you are tuning. I use a Computer headset with my Bitx40 and it has
long leads so I opted to put mic/phones/ptt and key jack all on the
back panel. IMHO the front panel is already busy enough with the
display, tuning and volume etc. Attached is a photo of my BITX40
front panel. I intend to do something similar with my uBITX when I
get around to it.

Cheers

Michael VE3WMB