I had a chance to get out tonight to fly with the new "Spatial Clairvoyance Mark I" (SC MkI) headset I built at the kitchen table this week.
I am still working out the bugs with the Shure PG30 head mic, so I made my own headmic very much like the gentleman at the cozy1200 website. In fact everything I did is pretty much as he did. I'll still work on the other mic, but to be honest, this one works great, and is simple and cheap.
I took an old headset that I was given as a student pilot and stripped it for parts. You need the mic and mic cable from the head unit, and both cables that plug into the plane - Cost: $0 if you have an old headset.
I made a head piece out of some left over hinge pin material. This will ride over your ears and hold the mic in place. Just bend it to shape and use heat shrink to hold the wires in place Cost: $0
I bought a small project box and a 1/8" stereo jack at Rat Shack. This is the juction box for all the wires as they transition from headset to plane. The wiring is pretty straight forward if you wired the plane. Cost $6.89 - ouch
I found a Shure E2C in-the-ear headset and Shure in-line volume control on e-bay - the E2c came with no ear inserts, so it was cheap - I am using the rubber X-mas trees, so it was no big deal. Cost: $50 + $12 shipping
Spare wire, shrink wrap, and solder to make hook ups - Cost $0, Ok maybe 2 bucks.
Anyway, the whole thing is well under a hundred bucks. Here are some pics:
After work, I went to to the hangar and plugged in the SC MkI. I gave it a quick checkout on the ground and and all seemed to be well. I was able to dial in in the earphone volume and the mic sounded good on the intercom. I got cleared to taxi and the tower said it sounded just fine.
I did my runup and noticed the sound was different than my clairity aloft (CA)unit, but not necessarily louder. I took off and headed for downtown St.Paul to do some touch and gos. There was a temp inversion and it was quite a bit warmer (ok, it was flippin' hot) at 2000ft. I got the KSTP ATIS, called the tower, and was cleared straight in for RWY 14. Everything sounded good. The sidetone when transmitting was not as loud as the CA, but that can be cleared with an adjustment on the SL40. There was a 25kt wind out of the south per the Dynon, but it was very smooth - causing the approach and landing to have a slow motion feeling. Very nice.
I did 2 T&G and asked the STP tower how the radio sounded and got a positive response.
It was getting dark, so I bugged out back to KANE, I was flying right traffic for 14 which put me right over downtown St. Paul. It really is beautiful with the river and tall buildings - and you are right on top of them! Not many big cities where you can do that. I'll bring the camera next time.
Picked up KANE ATIS, called the tower, and was cleared to land. The 25kt push was nice on the way north. Landed, and taxied to the pump to fill up. Met a nice gentleman with a lovely C-180, and a RV-3 kit ready to start.
- It works
- It can be made for not many $$
- It sounds different than the CA - They must block different freq
- The Shure earphones have beefier cords than other units I looked at - I feel that will be an advantage in the cockpit - they don't tangle as easily
- The E2c units can't use the CA foam tips, but I prefer the rubber trees anyway
This unit is primarily for my daughter b/c our regular adult headset is too big and not very comfortable on her. I think the rubber trees might be too large for her ears, so I found some plugs at Target called "earplanes" they fit on the E2c's and are smaller in diameter, like smaller rubber trees.
Check out www.cozy1200.com
for more details. My unit ended up much like his. I'll keep you posted on the other head mic.