Aimed at construction and other demanding off-road applications, the ITT Industries, Cannon MFGS3 multifunction control grip incorporates up to five momentary switches and twin optional rockers. A tough Nylon-based housing encloses connecting cables, within an internal protective tube, and a conformally coated printed circuit board. A rubber skirt membrane between the switch actuators and the handle body seals out dust and water to IP65 standards.
"The challenge in developing control grips is always ergonomics," says Product Manager Pete Leuty. "Specifically the head design and location of different buttons and their force/deflection characteristics. Also, mechanical strength must be high because operators use the fixed grips to pull themselves in and out of equipment and brace themselves during hard maneuvers."
Engineers also improved grip ergonomics by using soft-touch, over-molded rubber and designing in an adjustable palm rest. A lever on the back side of the handle opens internal "sawteeth" to allow operators to adjust the angle of the stem with respect to the flange of the palm rest. The lever then locks the position when it is closed. The designers also made the grip symmetrical so it can be easily used by both left- and right-handed operators. In addition, the grip can be mounted to a joystick base, allowing it to pivot for additional control functions.
ITT Cannon's K12 series momentary switches provide positive tactile feedback. Optional rockers can be momentary, maintained (positive on/off action), or analog types. The analog switches' Hall-effect position sensors provide a proportional output of 0.5-4.5V dc—useful for manipulating an implement, such as a bucket loader. ITT Industries, Cannon, www.ittcannon.com Enter 588