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Reading a "dummy axis" with XML gauge

The name of the game today:

I am writing a XML gauge to simulate the unusual nose wheel steering on Twin Commanders, which is operated by the toe brakes as opposed to rudder. The first part of toe pedal travel (e.g. 30%) is dedicated to steering; beyond that, the pedal applies brake as normal. This makes use of the aircraft.cfg flag "inhibit_rudder_on_steer = 1" (under [contact_points] - available since P3D v4.5) to decouple the rudder from nose wheel steering.

In the ideal solution, the user's toe brakes could be assigned to dummy axes in order to allow the gauge to set the proper values. I have working code tested with the CowlFlaps 1/2 axes assigned to my toe brakes. Of course this is a placeholder, and it doesn't work with a Turbo Commander, as cowl flaps are not available for a turbine engine type (likewise, things like "Throttle3" would not be available in 2-engine airplane). There are many assignable axes in P3D (more in FSUIPC) but most are not described as A:vars in the SDK, so I am unsure how to proceed.

I see that FSUIPC has a limited capability to assign an axis to something it sees in a LUA script. Is there a way I could read one of these values in an XML gauge?