Downsizing the Overhead Panel

By any measure, this is the "Mother Of All Panels" - a cockpit builder's dream! It contains more switches, more anunciator lights and more gauges with obsure functions than any other panel in a modern airplane's cockpit. Without it there would be no authentic engine startup procedure, no representation of the plane's electric, hydraulic and pneumatic systems (and certainly no attendant call button). All this does not mean you couldn't life - and fly your sim - without it. But isn't that completely besides the point? Once the team at Project Magenta had programed the sophisticated logic behind this panel, I simply could not resist building it...

Space in my cockpit comes at a premium, so I had no chance to recreate the complete B-737 overhead panel. I decided that I could do without some of it's components, like for example cabin pressure and temperature settings. The following two images (Project Magenta artwork) show the result of my downsizing effort.

But even the new panel, much smaller than the original, would not fit "overhead" in my cockpit. The only solution was to divide the stripped down OHP into three separate sub-panels, two of them strategically placed left and right of the pilot, and the third - paying homage to it's ancestor - above his head.

Below are Corel Draw images of these three subpanels. Click on them to go to their individual pages:


OHP - Left

  • Fuel management panel and Fuel Temp Gauge
  • Engine Start Switches
  • Electric Bus and Generators panel
  • APU panel with EGT gauge
  • Probe Heat panel
  • Wing anti ice panel
  • A and B Hydraulic System panel

OHP - Overhead

  • Standby Hydraulics
  • Navigation and Displays Selectors
  • Volt / Amps / Freq Display
  • Standby Power

OHP - Right

  • Pneumatic Systems Panel
  • L + R duct pressure gauge