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D.I.Y. Switch "Air-Surfer"

Adapting for switch use:

This guide explains how to adapt a Hasbro "Air-Surfer" radio controlled airplane for disability standard switch use.

If you're an absolute beginner, we strongly recommend that you follow "The Basic Soldering Guide" - by Alan Winstanley.

SAFETY: Adapting equipment voids the manufacturer's guarantee, and the attempt may cause irreparable damage. Always use adapted equipment under supervision, and disconnect any batteries when not in use. These adaptations are at your own risk.

You should be able to obtain an "Air-Surfer" via All other components are commonly available from Electronics stores such as Maplin Electronics.

1. What you will need:

1. What you will need.1.

  • 1x "Air-Surfer"; 2x 3.5mm mono headphone socket; thin wire (e.g 7strand 0.2mm); Shrink-wrap.
  • Soldering iron (15 to 30 Watt power); thin solder; soldering flux; desoldering braid.
  • Cordless drill with 1x 1/4 drill bit; knife or wire strippers; small screwdriver set.

2. Drill 2 holes:

2. Drill 2 holes.

Open up the casing. Make a small pilot hole where there is enough space to house your 3.5mm sockets. Drill two 1/4" holes as pictured, being careful to stop as soon as you're through.

3. Remove screw

3. Remove screw.

Remove the screw (encircled blue) to free up working on the PCB.

4. Test your sockets

4. Test your sockets.

As not all sockets are connected alike, you will need to find which 2 of the 3 contacts you need to solder to.

Attach a test lamp or multi-meter to any 2 contacts. Plug in your switch, then press it. If the lamp comes on when pressed you have the right connections, otherwise try a different combination. There's only 3 possibilities.

Solder two lengths of wire to the socket. Expose the ends, tinning them if you wish.

5. Solder Sockets

5. Solder sockets.

Connect each socket to the encircled points as pictured above. Use shrink wrap to insulate your soldering on the sockets.

6. Reassemble and Test

6. Reassemble and Test.

Put everything back together, being careful not to snag any wires. Test the unit with the plane. If there are any problems, study the quality of your soldering, and use a process of elimination to find the problem. Happy flying!

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Air-Surfer (c) Hasbro -