Simple (and cheap) fix for Logitech Wheel Optical Encoder Issue

Discussion in 'Sim Racing Hardware' started by Sick Lenny, Jan 29, 2014.

  1. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    I know that this known problem has been talked about in many threads here, but instead of reviving one from the dead and in the interest getting this info visible to others searching for help I decided to post a new thread here.

    I myself had the dreaded optical encoder wheel split happen to my DFGT early last year. I came to this site to find out what was causing the symptoms I was experiencing (mainly wheel center alignment issues). So after digging the optical encoder part out and taking a look at it (and making a failed glue-it-back together attempt), I tried something else.

    A washer.

    If you look at the encoder it is basically a shaft piece with a wheel on the end. The wheel is solid plastic on the inner part and spokes (encoder) on the outer part. All you need to do to fix it (mine was a complete split down one side) is take it with you to a hardware store and find a washer whose inner diameter is the same size as the shaft, and whose outer diameter is no wider than the solid part of the wheel. I was lucky in that I had one the perfect size in my garage.

    Slide it on, add a (VERY SMALL) dab of glue on the back to hold it against the solid part of the wheel and you are done. (Just make sure the split parts of the spokes/encoder wheel are lined back up evenly when you do though.)

    I know the popular solution on here is to order the custom brass one from overseas, and not to take anything away from that guy, but for those of you who are in a hurry or don't have the cash to spare, this works like a charm. My wheel has not had a problem since.

    Sorry I didn't have the presence of mind to take pics when I had it apart, but if anyone has questions (I know pictures/diagrams are much easier to read than words) I would be glad to help.

    Hope this is helpful.

    Update: Added photos below. You can see if you find the right size washer it will hold the split encoder wheel together and then you don't need any glue in the spokes area, just make sure the sides line up. I used a dab of glue on the back of the washer to hold it in place.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2014
    MarcoM, super_gt, Mortadela and 5 others like this.
  2. MSTER232

    MSTER232

    Messages:
    6,596
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    You sir deserve a medal. I carelessly lost my encoder disc while I was modding my DFGT but I never knew something as simple as a washer would work. Thank you very much :tup: :tup: :tup: !
     
  3. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    Did you have to buy a replacement?
     
  4. MSTER232

    MSTER232

    Messages:
    6,596
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    I still might buy a replacement, I went though the washers I had and all of them were a bit big to fit inside the sensor. Do you know the specific size of washer you used?
     
  5. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    I will try to update my OP with a clarification as I seem to have misled you on the details of the fix.
    The washer is needed in addition to the original (broken) encoder wheel as a reinforcement to hold the original together with a dab of glue. My apologies.

    Edit: lol, I just Re read your reply and think I have misunderstood you. Basically I am still unclear if you still have the original encoder to work with/fix

    Edit: I will see if I can get the dimensions for you
     
    MSTER232 likes this.
  6. MSTER232

    MSTER232

    Messages:
    6,596
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    :lol:

    I've lost my encoder and I thought a washer on its own would have worked; instead it just fixes a broken one. My encoder has disappeared :banghead: . I've seen where you can get a brass one but I don't want to spend 30$ on it for what it is. Do you know where I could get an encoder compatible with the logitech wheels?
     
  7. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    I don't know for sure.
    :confused:
    The brass one is usually the go to as far as I have seen around here. Some have mentioned looking for busted/used rigs and then you have other spare parts as well but that has got to be more than 30. I guess if it were me I would keep an eye around here for someone who may just buy the brass one and would be willing to give you their broken original.

    Best of luck my friend.

    Lenny
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2014
  8. grog

    grog

    Messages:
    1,238
    Location:
    United States

    Try opening up an old computer mouse, they use similar encoder wheels. Without the old one to compare to, it may be hard to tell if it will work.

    I just snagged one from an old mouse for my g27 (so it has a better resolution), i just had to cut it down and put a hole in the center, (it had a shaft attached to it like this )
     
  9. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    Updated original post with pics (finally). Hope this is helpful.
     
  10. RacerXX

    RacerXX

    Messages:
    577
    Location:
    United States
    I've very often found it much better to TRY things out, experiment rather than doing "research" by reading forums. Found all sorts of cool things over the years.

    I love forums but they have a marked tendency to get insular / provincial / forum-correct. Don't be afraid to try out new things!
     
    Ian_83 likes this.
  11. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    I have always been this way myself, but I also grew up in the pre-internet era, so self-reliance and discovery were more critical (didn't have good traditional info resources where I lived). As an adult with limited time to fiddle, the internet can be a huge time saver.
     
  12. Alfa_Avanti44

    Alfa_Avanti44

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Mexico
    I do have my optical encoder of my G27, but I don't understand how you put the washer in front or behind the optical encoder, and how it will fit in the sensor when you put it back again?

    My optical encoder is broken, but gluing with enamel could fix it?
     
  13. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    How is yours broken? Is it the typical split down the side?

    If so, glue alone will not work because as soon as you try to put it back on it will split again. Also, with glue you run the risk of getting it in the encoder wheel itself and that is a problem.

    The washer goes on the side with the shaft, and should be just the right size to keep the seam/split from opening when you put it back on the shaft, and it should be snug enough that it will stay in place without need for glue. It is acting like a clamp or a collar. It also has to be skinny enough not to obscure the holes in the encoder as well, so it doesn't get in the way of passing through the sensor. See below:

    [​IMG]
    Even though you should not need it, I recommend a tiny dab of glue on the back of the washer to hold it in place.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2015
    Mortadela likes this.
  14. Alfa_Avanti44

    Alfa_Avanti44

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Mexico
    Thanks, I was finding some washers in my house and I've just found a lot, but none of them was of the ideal size :banghead:. So when I was putting a washer on the optical encoder I broke the optical encoder because the hole of the washer didn't was big enough to enter smoothly the shaft, so when I wanted to remove it it was stuck in there and then I broke the optical encoder.:banghead:
     
  15. Alfa_Avanti44

    Alfa_Avanti44

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Mexico
    I've already ordered a new otical encoder made of brass from this page:

    http://cmlaserservice.com/

    But it will delay to arrive to Mexico a lot of time :(.

    But we'll wait, we don't have a choice.
     
  16. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    Sorry to hear that. At least the brass one won't break! :D
     
    Alfa_Avanti44 likes this.
  17. Alfa_Avanti44

    Alfa_Avanti44

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Mexico
    Yeah, that's what I tought, for the meantime I'll use a DFGT that my cousin will borrow me until the piece arrives. :bowdown:
     
  18. Kerstin

    Kerstin

    Messages:
    2
    Hi Grog,
    I have now such an encoder wheel. Could you please tell me, how do you place the hole in it. It is just a small piece and I don't know how to do this. Which tool do I have tu use? Thank you very much for an answer (sorry, for my english, I'm german...)
     
  19. Kerstin

    Kerstin

    Messages:
    2
    Oh, sorry, I just saw, taht sicklenny had that solution. Please, would you answer me?? Thank you very much!!
     
  20. grog

    grog

    Messages:
    1,238
    Location:
    United States
    Sorry for the late reply I haven't been on in a while. I just used a small drill bit to make the hole. I also used a razor knife (the tip) to make a divit or indentation in the center to start the drill. The hard part is getting it centered along with avoiding splitting the plastic although it's probably not that crucial if its off center a little bit.
     
  21. Gtownboy

    Gtownboy

    Messages:
    38
    Location:
    Canada
    What a good idea I resorted to melding it with a red hot paper clip
     
  22. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    How did that work out? It sounds like a good idea.
     
  23. Gtownboy

    Gtownboy

    Messages:
    38
    Location:
    Canada
    Worked alright but still a flimsy peice of plastic
    Broke again so I'm goin to try your idea cause it's so simple but it's perfect
     
    Sick Lenny likes this.
  24. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    Yeah, that's what I realized after trying to glue it with 3 different kinds of glue and it still breaking when I put it back on the shaft. :lol:
     
    VBR likes this.
  25. Gtownboy

    Gtownboy

    Messages:
    38
    Location:
    Canada
    Yea this is my 4th time fixing it. Frustrating
     
  26. VBR

    VBR Premium

    Messages:
    5,284
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    @Sick Lenny - Great idea! Will file this idea away under useful things.


    :tup:
     
    Sick Lenny likes this.
  27. Gtownboy

    Gtownboy

    Messages:
    38
    Location:
    Canada
    Worked beautifully found the washer in my garage filed it out a bit and its tight like prom night
     

    Attached Files:

    Ian_83 and Sick Lenny like this.
  28. Sick Lenny

    Sick Lenny

    Messages:
    157
    Location:
    United States
    :cheers:.
    :lol:
     
    Gtownboy likes this.
  29. alainsenna

    alainsenna

    Messages:
    148
    Location:
    Scotland
    Hey guys, I have just fixed mines and confirm the glue trick works, the washer solution above is genius and the next time mines needs doesn't i will be doing this, regarding the glue, make sure its the correct type, i.e plastics, don't apply straight to the encoder wheel, hold encoder up to a light put some pressure on it and the cracks will show up as light shining through, very important as mines had more slits than I original noticed, on the circle wheel but 2 also on the shaft itself which is the main culprit as this is what causes it to wobble when it spins, be very careful setting alignment back up, theirs a great video showing how to do this, as the first time i fixed it, tried the wheel and it wouldn't even calibrate fully so i had actually made the problem worse, apply the glue to a toothpick or similar small precise instrument, cotton wool bud will do, and then apply the glue, do not glue the inside of the encoders shaft as you will have problems fitting back onto the shaft, this fix works, not sure how long it will last, but from my experience, the washer trick will be a better longer lasting fix, good luck guys, and anyone with same problem, bare in mind if its in warranty don't open it up as Logitech will replace the unit no problems, ONLY DO THIS IF OUTSIDE WARRANTY, never through away a good wheel for a 10p/10cence part, good luck guys. and one last piece of advice once you get into the internal of the base unit, the encoder is covered by a little black box, this is very easy to broke, i did it, the you tube videos i watched also did but tried to cover up the fact he had just snapped it off, there's a way to get into it properly but it involves taking more parts from inside away to give more space, its no big deal its just to keep dust from blocking the sensors ability to read the spaces on the encoder wheel, you can simply place back on top and it will stay in place and keep dust out, but i wish i knew hoe to get it off properly before i did my repair, also one thing to note, may just be a placebo affect, but i feel my wheel is ten times better, more precise, more feedback strange could just me, PEACE GUYS, and happy racing. anyone wanting advice let me know, i have never tried to fix an electronic device before, so don't be sacred guys its a very easy thing to do, and very satisfying.
     
  30. Mortadela

    Mortadela

    Messages:
    2
    Your are my idol!! I will try as soon I get home and let you know! Regards