Control and joysticks

Electrical control of hydraulics

Nowadays it is more and more important to be able to operate machines in a controlled way. By using a switch or joystick an electric signal is turned into hydraulic movement. In this way a hydraulic cylinder or hydraulic motor can be operated, but it is also possible to activate a power pack. Electric control elements for hydraulic equipment can be categorised into on/off control and proportional control.  

On/off control

An on/off control unit is the conventional means of controlling a hydraulic valve. This has many advantages above a manually operated valve. One of these is that hydraulic functions can be operated from a distance and installation is relatively simple. An on/off control unit is used in simple hydraulic systems where accuracy regarding the oil flow is of lesser importance. When more accuracy is required it is better to use a proportional control unit or a combined system of on/off and proportional control.


  • Simple to operate
  • Dosing less accurate than with proportional control
  • Relatively cheap to buy


Proportional control and joysticks

A hydraulic system can be controlled better when using proportional control. Amongst others you can adjust the speed of the control unit which makes it possible for instance to control a crane in a dosed way instead of by abrupt adjustments, which can sometimes lead to dangerous situations.

Using proportional control by using a joystick or other control unit has become common practice in the world of hydraulics. A proportional control unit can be used for directional control valves, pressure control valves, speed control valves, flow control valves, etc.

Proportional control, for instance by using a joystick, makes sure that the oil flow is accurately regulated. When using a weak electric signal only a little oil is let through and when using a stronger signal the opening is enlarged. For a more accurate control, there are also hydraulic systems with a fixed position determination that measures how far a valve is opened for a more accurate control.


  • Different settings possible
  • Accurate control
  • Different electric charges possible in AC or DC

Findynamica has a wide range, with many options, available for operating your machine or installation.


Extensive product documentation

Joysticks Penny + Giles JC150

Joysticks Penny + Giles JC400