Maximum Functionality in Minimal Space

Electro-mechanical controls are critical for top flight performance.  Each control must react quickly and precisely to every action.  In the vital are where man interfaces with machine, our controls are technically superior and user friendly.  We have been designing control wheels for over 50 years. They have flown on the U-2 and TR-1, the C-141, the Beech 400A the Saab 340 and all models of C-130. Design materials have included magnesium, aluminum and powder-coated wheels. Each design has been customized to the application. We have integrated many functions on the C130J control wheel that were previously located elsewhere in the cockpit (HOTAS). This allows the pilots to keep their hands on the control wheel and eyes where they need to be focused.

The Adams Rite Advantage
Depending on customer requirements, we offer “plug and play” products that reduce or eliminate rigging and calibration time during aircraft assembly.  Each design combines quality, reliability and ergonomics to provide a smooth transition between man and machine.

Proven Pedigree

Max Strength Minimum Weight

World Class Quality

Superior Ergonomics

Key Considerations for Adams Rite Designs


  • Switch type/size
  • Switch location
  • Wheel shape
  • Wheel size (large enough for loads but not blocking view of instruments)
  • HOTAS (how many operations to be put on the wheel?)
  • Finish (paint, powder coat)

Mechanical/Structural Features

  • Material
  • Broach/no broach
  • Sand or investment cast
  • 100% X-ray?
  • Chart holder
  • Wire harness termination, length
  • Column?


  • Past design experience used to meet customer specification.
  • MTBF


  • Optimize on previous design experience
  • Minimize need for special tools
  • On aircraft repair?
  • Bench repair only?


  • Always a balance between operational requirements, functional requirements and environmental requirements
  • Goal is maximum strength, minimum weight
  • Some flexibility with castings (style, wall-thickness) and materials

Environmental Considerations

  • Military (stringent for operational exposure)
  • Commercial (stringent for dispatch rate)
  • General Aviation (stringent for dispatch rate)
  • Helicopter (vibration)
    • Installation location
    • Protected cockpit
    • Will not be used as a step?


Adams Rite Hardware & Controls Brochure