# getting lined up with the runway?

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ok im a very new pilot.. to the fs2002 world and i I have all the basics down to flying and getting to my destination, but my problem is getting lined up.. with the runway they clear me to land. I still don't have a clue on how you do that... when u have the airport in site. Can anybody give me some basic information on what i need to do to get lined up with the active runway to make my landing? I know it sounds stupid.. but im just trying to learn. Thanks

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OK. You'll have to learn how to do this, won't you? :-)Are you flying VFR?If you are flying VFR then you need to be familiar with the airport first. Know what runways there are and what direction they point in. I don't know if you know this or not so I'll just say it. The numbers on a runway tell you what heading the runways point to. If the runway number is 18 then it points on a heading of 180 degrees. In other words if you land on runway 18 then you will be on a heading of 180 when you land on it. You know how to use the compass or the heading indicator right?If the tower tells you to enter a pattern for runway 18 then you fly directly over the airport and look which runway is 18, or if can't see the numbers then look for the one that points in the direction of 180 degrees according to your heading indicator or compass. Then after you cross the airport and know which runway you are using, turn so that you are flying parallel with the runway but in the opposite direction, so if the runnways heading is 180 you will fly paralel with the runways on a heading of 360. Once you are past the runway going on heading 360 you can slow down, start descending and turn around to heading 180 again to line up with the runway and land.Off-course this is just the basics to get you to land safely but there are more things to learn like circuits. There are web-sites that teach you about all this stuff and if someone knows one please point us to it.IFR is more complicated with vectors and ILS to land, so that comes later on.Let me know if I explained properly or if you need more help.BTW, I am not a real pilot so if I am doing things wrong, someone please correct me. I only have 4 hours in a C-152 :-)Take careMike

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At work, so I have to make it brief, but, start with a small, slow plane, not a 737. Second, check out the movie tutorials provided with Fs2002. Very helpful. Third, as someone who is likely going to be a CFI in about 3-4 months, I will try to pass on some helpful hints... everyone's will differ.First, let's disregard the traffic pattern for a moment b/c it's FS2k2, not real life. You won't run into any planes. 1st Get yourself stabilized at about 90 knots and at 1000 ft above the elevation of the airport. 1000 ft above ground level (agl)is the standard traffic pattern alt at most apts. 2nd fly around at that altitude and get oriented with regards to where you are and where the airport is in relation to you... As I said forget the traffic pattern for now... 3rd... put one notch of flaps in, watch the plane slow at your current power setting and add more power to maintain the same altitude (your plane will want to descend now that it has more drag and is slower). You should now be flying at 90 knots, with a higher power setting, and have the 1st notch of flaps in.... keep flying around get a feel for where you are and where the airport is...4th look at the runway numbers as you fly over (they are on either end of the rwy.) These are headings that correspond with the headings on your heading indicator (and compass if they are both aligned with each other) If the rwy is 32, then fly parallel to the rwy for about 2-3 minutes (assuming no wind) on a 320 heading.... see where you are. If the airport was to the right of you when you started, it should be to the right of you and behind you obviously... if it was on the left of you when you started to make your parallel track of 320, than it will be behind you and to the left... easy enough.... Then look back at the airport and see if you can the little white, white-red, or red lights to the left of the approach side of the rwy...just at the beginning..these tell you if you are high or low as you approach the airport... i.e. all white - too high, white and red beside each other - perfect, all red - too low... So, if you are still heading 320, the next thing to do is turn to the reciprocal, 160 while reducing your power to about 1500 rpm in the cessna. Also, put in a another notch of flaps. This will help to slow you down and let you descend without increasing your airspeed. Don't pull back on the yoke, just turn the plane with your rudders and yoke....You want to let the plane descend at about 500 fpm while you turn the plane. This descent will happen naturally b/c of the reduced speed and increased drag of the flaps. Visually, imagine a car leaving a parking garage on one of the descending spiral ramps down to the ground level....So keep a gradual turn, let the plane descend, and apply or reduce power to keep it at 70-80 knots as you descend... As you come around to the 320 heading, you should be looking at the little lights on the side of the rwy to see if you are descending too fast (too low of an approach angle), or descending too slowly as you approach the field (too high of an approach angle). If you are too high, reduce power and allow the plane to descend faster, (don't necessarily have to push the nose over with the yoke). If you are too low, add power, as you approach the field. Either way maintain a constant descent.. If you see white and red, you are perfect.... If you use a 500 ft descent usually you will make it perfect based on a standard traffic pattern. For the pro's out there just bear with the holes and imperfections of the story, b/c I am doing this in about 3-5 minutes on the fly.So, that is essentially the descent aspect, but there is the horizontal aspect of flying too. Unfortunately, your visual references come with experience, but in general pick a point just to the left of the center line of the top of your panel (maybe a 1/2 inch on your monitor or just to the left of the compass) and line it up with the center line of the rwy from a distance. You will find that if this stays lined up as you approach the rwy (even though it gets bigger visually as you approach it) your plane stays lined up with the center line. And as you touch down, the center line immediately in front of your plane (not the other end of the rwy) will be lined up with the same part of your dash... Hard to describe, it's a visual thing... anyway hope it helps..Good luck with the flying!! And my 2 cents worth...join AOPA, lots of great info, benefits, discounts, and a free 12 month subscription to Flight Training Magazine. Great magazine, even for more experienced pilots (we always learn).... I am not selling it, I am just a satisfied member...Christopher BraunP4 1.8768 ram 80 gig hardriveVisiontek Ti4 4600CH yoke/pedals19" inch monitor-Soundblaster PCI 512Win XPPrivate Pilot - 115 hours - IFR checkride 2 weeks.AOPALawyerPilots Bar Association"Men without dreams are never free, twas thus this way and thus will ever be."

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Ok so are you saying.. if Im cleared to land on runway.. 17.. find the airport and runway 17,then fly parallel to that runway for 2 to 3 minutes.. then turn around and make a heading of 170 and I should be pretty close to lined up with the runway and able to make my desecent for the landing?

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Yes, assuming a no wind environment... Which almost never happens in real life..except at night occasionally.... But, find a visual point on your glareshield, even professional pilots use a reference point... I forgot the other one...find a bug or mark on the windshield that is lined up with the runway, (even use a marker on a real plane)and line it up with the rwy. Then, if the mark descends away from the airport, add power. If the mark ascends, reduce power. The same applies for side to side movements... You essentially want the mark to appear motionless with the rwy as you descend toward the rwy... Obviously putting a mark on your monitor doesn't work unless you are using the 2d cockpit, or you are using the 3'd and you never move your head angle....kind of defeats the 3-d cockpit view..Good luck and by all means don't be afraid to ask, there is never a stupid question in aviation, except, "Can I see your I.D.?" (to the FAA inspector that comes to investigate that thing that you shouldn't have done in the first place)ChristopherP4 1.8768 ram 80 gig hardriveVisiontek Ti4 4600CH yoke/pedals19" inch monitor-Soundblaster PCI 512Win XPPrivate PilotAOPALawyerPilots Bar Association"Men without dreams are never free, twas thus this way and thus will ever be."

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Thanks, I will try this out, But what is the point of the vor/dme?

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Once you start training for your IFR, you can use a VOR and DME (if it is equipped to give such information) to track a radial inbound (or outbound if it is the Final Approach Fix FAF) and use the DME to tell your distance to certain stepdowns and point like the Missed approach point (MAP), etc. Essentially these have nothing to do with VFR approaches or traffic patterns.P4 1.8768 ram 80 gig hardriveVisiontek Ti4 4600CH yoke/pedals19" inch monitor-Soundblaster PCI 512Win XPPrivate PilotAOPALawyerPilots Bar Association"Men without dreams are never free, twas thus this way and thus will ever be."

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