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Guest sebastianmaguire

Circle to land

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Guest sebastianmaguire

Hi there all,"Circle to Land"...is still bugging me but i'm determined to get it right so can someone help me on this glitch... I'm trying to mirror a real world procedure used by Ryanair landing at Carcasonne.Right i'm in my 737NG 800 ready to approach LFMK in southern France. Runway 10 is my only precision approach and the reciprocal 28 has nothing. I'm at 3,500 at the IAF ready to start down the ILS (course 98 set and radios set) but having been cleared by the Tower for a circle to land on 28 (high terrain to the south) I engage LOC and use Vertical Speed to head down the glideslope. I slow down to Flap 15 circling speed and set my altitude window to the circling minima of 1500 ft in this case.Things then happen very quickly when I hit 1500ft. The runway is now ahead and I hit my heading select to around 45 degrees to give me a left turn. I turn my ND knob out of map and set it to "plan" so as to get a good distance view for my aiming point of around 2.5 miles abeam runway 28. All this while I'm checking out the window to keep sight of the runway. When i reach my abeam point i use heading select to direct me back on heading 98, I change my course knob to 279 (runway 28), I go into my fmc and change the runway arrival from 10 to 28. Since this give me a runway and no FAF i make my own by entering 2 miles in the "Ext" (Extended centerline) box beneath.I can delete any discontinuities and when I'm about 3 or 4 miles out hit execute followed by Nav...now this little trick should have me making a smooth as cream base turn followed by turn to 2 mile final all of which should leave me time to get to an approach flap 30 speed and a slow decent using vertical speed with the green arc right on 28.....In my dreams it seems. Hitting NAV does turn the plane but the plane doesn't seem to want to intercept my 2 mile extended centerline fix even with course intercept set to 279...Can any one helpSincerelySebastian Maguire

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Sebastian,In my humble opinion you are overdoing it. I may be wrong but no pilot would attempt to fiddle with FMS while performing a circle to land approach. Waste of time, waste of energy. Circle to lands are normally performed strictly with manual flying and looking out the window and not having heads down and punching FMC keys and worrying about discontinuities or runway selections. If you really want to use automation - just use the autopilot's heading select function. Forget about the NAV, it is too late for that. Ask Ryanair pilots if you know any - I bet you would hear similar things.Michael J.WinXP-Home SP2,AMD64 3500+,Abit AV8,Radeon X800Pro,36GB Raptor,1GB PC3200,Audigy 2http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/747400.jpg


Michael J.

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Guest EDCS

Michael,I agree with you. To many workload. I think this procedure performs much better with manual flying......and much more fun for the pilot. Automation is good, but not at all. GreetingsStefan

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I tend to agree with Michael and Stefan. When circling the pilot is too busy in a tight airspace to worry about programming the computer to do something easily done manually. Plus, it can be so fullfilling to fly the legs manually maintaining altitude and aligning the runway when turning final. Since we


Cheers,
Victor M. Lima
 

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>>Things then happen very quickly when I hit 1500ft. The runway>is now ahead and I hit my heading select to around 45 degrees>to give me a left turn. If I were the pilot flying and seated in the left seat I would rather perform the right turn in your example above since it would give me better visibility of the airport/runway through the left window for the rest of the pattern. Also, you can't stay at 1500 ft very long since it takes time and space to loose all this altitude. Flying circle approaches really tests your pilot's skills - I recomend you practice it until you get it right. And it is absolutely OK to use the autothrottle if you so desire. Michael J.WinXP-Home SP2,AMD64 3500+,Abit AV8,Radeon X800Pro,36GB Raptor,1GB PC3200,Audigy 2http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/747400.jpg


Michael J.

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Guest LahaskaFlyer

In all conditions landing I always go manual at plus or minus 3000 feet. Autopilots are great to give you a break from the repetitiveness (tedium) of a long flight but landings are what pilots are hired to do, not computer programs. jack wilson

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Guest sebastianmaguire

Michael and all,I did ask a Ryanair F/O the last time a flew to Carcasonne and following a "circle to land procedure". As F/O he had the better view of the airport on his right. The approach plate itself prohibits circling to the south because of high terrain. He gave me a very fast explanation which I did not have full time to digest since it envolved specific decent rates and timings. From what i gather, he had his captain punch in the runway 28 details on the FMC while he concentrated on keeping it visual but what got me perplexed is that he said he used "heading select". I've tried using heading select with differential bank angle select but its nearly impossible to line up with the runway...how do you get that turn to finals and how far out should you be when performing that base turn (2 miles abeam then another mile out?)..these are all question which demand a technical reply and its one that Ryanair F/O seemed to be giving.Flying manual of course from the point of reaching circling minima on the ILS is all very well but its that base turn followed by turn to approach which is so difficult to master on a PC even in virtual cockpit mode.PS If the non flying pilots sets it up, i can't see why intercept course to a quickly entered center line fix 2 miles from runway 28 can't have you flying in NAV which gives you time to concentrate on decent rates.Sebastian

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>minima on the ILS is all very well but its that base turn>followed by turn to approach which is so difficult to master>on a PC even in virtual cockpit mode.It is easy if you know how to use FMC to help you out. The trick is to program the FMC (using the FIX page) to extend the runway centerline (dashed lines). This way you will have a very good situational awareness looking at your ND and can plan your turns to align with the final approach course.Have you ever tried to do something what pilots call touch-and-goes? Takeoffs and landing on the same runway flying the typical circuit pattern around the airport? This could be an excellent practice for you how to judge distance from runway, height, direction, etc. This is ABC for every pilot. Oh, and try to do it at some airport where there is no ILS so you could not "cheat" (I recommend TNCM). If you are good at that then you can try circle approaches. Michael J.WinXP-Home SP2,AMD64 3500+,Abit AV8,Radeon X800Pro,36GB Raptor,1GB PC3200,Audigy 2http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/747400.jpghttp://www.hifisim.com/images/asv_beta_member.jpg


Michael J.

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Guest sebastianmaguire

Thanks Michael.. I will give these touch and goes a try. Will i need to re calculate v speeds each time i take off again? do I use the fmc or manually enter them? Do I press the Toga switch when wheels touch the surface? what should my speed/flap setting be on the downwind / base turn etc?ThanksSebastian

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HI Sebastian,Just to add to what has already been said regarding too much workload, don't forget that you find it difficult probably because you have NO F/O! You're doing the work of two people and besides, it's more fun doing a manual go-around or simply using the auto-pilot heading indicator to manually adjust your course for the turn and control the rest manually (e.g. throttle, flaps, altitude) or, use auto-pilot (again manually without programming the FMC) for heading and altitude and rest manual.John


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