In this section is information on various suppliers fabricating
throttle quadrants for the 737. I want my flight
simulator to be as realistic as possible and I am
presently reviewing a number of suppliers to obtain the
right throttle quadrant. Below are pictures of those
reviewed to date along with links to their websites with
information and pictures of their throttle quadrants. In
addition to reviewing replicas I am also considering an
actual throttle quadrant from the 737. In addition to
those suppliers with links below it is my understanding
that Flight Deck Solutions is working on a throttle
quadrant for the 737 that will be available by the end
of this year (2005). Also, please click on the link
below to Project Magenta's website and view the video of
their test of their throttle quadrant. It is my hope
that Flight Deck Solution's throttle quadrant for the
737 will incorporate the features shown in Project
Magenta's video. When a replica of the 737 is available
that encompasses these features I will look seriously at
purchasing it. If not I will probably look to buying and
actual throttle quadrant of the 737 and try to make it
Progress to Date 03/10/07
After over 5 months of hard work I have finished the
first phase of refurbishing my 737-200 throttle quadrant
and converting it to a 737NG quadrant. The next phase
will be to add the necessary stepper motors, clutches
and cabling to make the quadrant fully functional. Below
are a few photos of the converted quadrant. For details
about how I did the conversion review the pictures
After a great deal of
research I have decided to purchase an actual 737-200
throttle quadrant pictured below.
I will be posting
additional information in the future concerning
refurbishing my throttle quadrant to make it look like
the throttle quadrant in the 737 NG.
On September 30, 2006 I
finally received my 737-200 throttle quadrant. Below are
a few pictures as well as some preliminary steps I have
taken to begin restoring my quadrant.
Check out the 40 years of
dust dirt and grime that has accumulated inside of the
quadrant. It is going to take me as long to clean it as
it will to take it apart.
I worked for about 6
hours figuring out how best to remove the pedestal from
the quadrant. I removed the pedestal by drilling out
some of the rivets in the pedestal adjacent to the
quadrant. Finally after one side of the pedestal was
removed I used a sabre saw to make 4 cuts, two on each
side, and the throttle quadrant was free of the
pedestal. Below are pictures of the cuts that I made.
In the photo below the
throttle quadrant is separated from the remains of the
pedestal pictured at the right.
My throttle quadrant is
finally free of its 2 bay pedestal. Now the real work
begins. Be sure to check back often as I will post
additional information and photos on my progress as I
restore this quadrant and convert it to a 737NG throttle
After a lot of hard work
and a lot of advice from other simbuilders I was finally
able to take apart the throttle quadrant.
Here are a few photos I
have taken to show just how filthy these parts were. I
was able to find a cleaner that worked very well in
cleaning up these parts.
Below are all of the
internal parts after they were cleaned.
It took a few days to
clean up the throttle quadrant, but then I was ready to
start on the new Stab Trim panel. Before I can build the
new Stab Trim panel I have to remove the old one.
I removed part of the
throttle quadrant that needs to be trimmed to make space
for the new Stab Trim faceplate.
Then I made a few cuts to
remove the old one.
Here I have cut a piece
of metal to make a template to check for final
Satisfied with my
template measurements I cut the final version out of a
heavier piece of metal.
After that completed
I spent all day trying to put my throttle quadrant back
together. I would strongly recommend that anyone who
wants to attempt to take a quadrant apart take pictures
along the way to aid in re-assembling. It will save you
a lot of time.
Before I finish the area
for the Stab Trim panel I wanted to test fit with the
pattern for the panel along with the toggle switches and
Satisfied with the fit I
started to finish the area with Bondo, then sanded it,
painted it, and then attached the toggle switches.
I am now designing all
of the faceplates that I will need for the quadrant. I
am presently working with a company to supply faceplates
made out of Lexan that are engraved from the rear and
then paint is applied from the back. This gives the look
you want and makes them very durable. I will post
updated pictures once I have received them.
Just got my faceplates
and I think they look great.
I also got the first half
of my order for the light plates for my quadrant. These
were very expensive as they are the actual light plates
used on the 737. I was able to locate the original
manufacturer from the old ones on my quadrant. The old
company was sold to a new company and they put me in
touch with a distributor who would sell me the
light plates. Below are the new trim light plates.
Below are pictures of my
trim wheels before I had them refinished.
I picked up my trim
wheels after they were powder-coated. I then painted
on the white stripe, touched up the handles with
semi-gloss black to match the trim wheels and then put
them back together. I am very happy with the end result.
After studying the
throttle levers as well as reviewing the design of the
737NG throttle levers I am going to attempt to convert
the existing throttle levers using a modification of
Pedro Bibiloni's CAD drawings. Note below I will be
removing the TOGA assemblies on the old levers.
Below are pictures taken
after removing the assembly from one of my levers. Now I
will begin the task of adapting Pedro's CAD
drawing to work with my existing levers.
After several days of
trial and error I have been able to craft some templates
of paper modifying Pedro's templates so they will fit my
old throttle levers.
I did a test fit with
these paper templates before my next step, which will be
to cut templates out of balsa wood. These will give me
accurate width dimensions as well as giving me a better
feel before I order the actual levers out of acrylic.
I used the paper
templates as patterns to cut some levers out of
basswood. These helped me to determine if I had the
right width for each piece. Below are a few pictures of
the throttle levers with the wooden pieces in place.
Based upon the look I
have achieved so far I have ordered the throttle levers
made out of acrylic. It is my hope that I will be able
to use acrylic as opposed to steel to finish my new
I received my acrylic
throttle levers that I ordered from Emachineshop.com. I
am very pleased with the results and believe I will be
able to use these as opposed to having to make them out
of metal. Click on the photo below for a link to
Here are a few photos of
the levers temporarily screwed together before I install
them on the actual throttle levers of my quadrant.
Below are photos of the
acrylic levers after applying them to the actual levers
and using Bondo to seal them to look like one unit.
After a lot of planning
and hard work I have almost finished my throttle
levers. Next I painted them and added the TOGO decals. All I have left to do
on the levers is to finish the throttle knobs and
Now it is time to tackle
the throttle knobs. I ordered replacement knobs that I
had planned on using, however I only used the knobs for
the reverse levers. I decided instead to use the old
knobs and refurbish them. The decision to use the old
ones was because of the simplicity of repainting them
and applying decals for the lettering. This also enabled
me to incorporate A/T disconnect switches easily in the
old throttle lever knobs as they are already hollow.
Here is one of the knobs
painted with plastic primer.
I used the product below
to prime the knobs.
I then applied the decals
to the knobs.
Here both knobs have
their decals applied and are ready for the next step.
I then was ready to apply
resin spray to the knobs to make them durable and
protect the decals from heavy use. At first I applied a
coat of resin spray before the decals, however the
decals did not adhere well to the resin and curled after
applying more resin. They did much better when applied
to the plastic primer. However, the resin spray at times
did not bond well to the plastic primer. So I applied a
coat of Polycrylic, pictured below, after applying the
I then applied multiple
coats of the resin spray, pictured below, to all of the
Here are the throttle
reverse knobs after multiple applications of the resin
And here the throttle
knobs have been attached to the levers.
Lastly, the A/T
disconnect switches were installed in the knobs,
completing the throttle levers. Then all of the knobs
were attached to the quadrant.
Next I tackled the speed
brake assembly. Thanks to the FDS forum I received a lot
of input on the function of this assembly. Special
thanks to Dave Allen for all of his help with the
details of the speed brake assembly. Below are photos of
the parts involved in fabricating the assembly.
I applied aluminum foil
to one side of the assembly in preparation of using
Bondo to attach the parts to make it a single unit. Then
I can remove the cover with the aluminum foil and trim
out the center. This will enable me to reattach the
cover and be able to access the wiring in the future if
With the parts now
assembled I am ready to Bondo.
Now the Bondo is applied
to the inside of the assembly.
It is then sanded.
Cover is then removed
exposing the aluminum foil.
Using various drill bits
the center is cut out.
Next the micro switch is
The assembly is now ready
for a coat of primer.
And then the final coat
I then focused on
painting the throttle quadrant. Here I have placed all
of the screws in a sheet of cardboard for easy painting.
First a coat of primer
Then the final coat of
Boeing gray was applied. There is really very little
difference in the color of the primer versus the final
coat, however with different lighting the final coat
looks gray at times and blue at others.
Here the quadrant is
ready to be reassembled.
Below is the pulley
assembly I made that I will install in the base of the
quadrant. It will be used to mount plates to hold the
pots for the flaps and the Stab trim. It will also guide
the cables from the throttle levers to the stepper
motors that will move the throttle levers during
Here the assembly is
installed and the throttle lever cables are visible.
Also not the lever to the right. This is the parking
brake lever. I reversed the arm at the base of the
quadrant and attached this to a threaded rod which is
then attached to a toggle switch. This will hold the
parking brake in place as well as turning on the parking
brake light when activated.
Pictured below are the
threaded rods that will be attached to pots for the
flaps (right) and Stab trim (left).
I used contact switches
from the original quadrant. Pictured below are those
that will be used for the fuel cutoff levers.
I also was able to use
the pulleys and some electrical components from the
original quadrant. Note the wiring harnesses to the
right in the photo below. These have been used to wire
the micro switches in the throttle levers.
Below is a photo showing
the cables from the throttle levers that will connect to
the stepper motors to be used to move the throttle
levers during autopilot operations.
Below are the pots
mounted to aluminum plates I added. These plates were
cut from scrap aluminum that I had from the old
pedestal. The pot the right is for the flaps, and the
one to the left is for the Stab trim. Special thanks to
Chuck from Project B737NG for his help. His website was
a tremendous help in setting up my quadrant. For a
direct link to his website click on the photo below.
In the photo below you
can see parking brake toggle switch used to activate the
parking brake light. The toggle switch is inside the
aluminum tube at the left which was filled with bondo.
This was then drilled to accept the threaded rod
attached to the parking brake lever.
Below is the pot for the
speed brake assembly.
In order to make my
quadrant appear to be a close as possible to the NG
version I decided to modify the quadrant side panels. I
did this by adding some depth to the side panels using
1/4 inch wood and bondo. In addition, I had to
fabricate new manual holders as one was missing from the
quadrant I purchased. Below are the quadrant side panels
as well as the manual holders I fabricated. I had
painted them before I decided to add some depth to them.
After applying some 1/4
inch plywood I then added bondo to smooth out the
surface and finish adding the depth (thickness) I
desired. Below is a photo of one of the manual holders
before the final sanding is complete.
Final sanding is
Holes drilled in manual
After sanding and
completed I applied a coat of primer.
In the photos below
note the depth or thickness of the side panel and manual
Below all of the side
panels are ready for the final coat of light gray.
Final coat of light gray
was applied with a paint gun. Now everything is ready
for final coat of Boeing gray to the tops of the side
panels as well as the speed brake assembly.
Final coat of Boeing gray
was applied with a paint gun as well.
In order to make the
speed brake function easier to accomplish upon an
aborted takeoff I filled in the notch in the speed brake
rail to avoid the lever having to raise upward before
deploying aft. This eliminates the need to utilize a
device to raise the lever before moving the lever aft.
I then attached a small
square piece of aluminum to the speed brake lever to
depress the speed brake micro switch when the speed
brake lever is in the full forward position.
With all of the
individual components completed the quadrant is then
reassembled to produce the final product pictured below.
Compare my quadrant above
to an actual 737NG quadrant picture below.