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Wilbert

Fly With ATC

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I know this has probably been asked a hundred or more times but perhaps someone can explain to me is how do you fly the 747/737's with ATC? I've always flown with flightplans made within FS9 and communicated with ATC following takeoff and approach instructions. What would be the procedure with ATC when using flightplans created with programs like FSBuild?Wilbert BrownMiami, FL

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possibly te same answer as everytime.. forget the FS9 ATC and fly online :) Once you try it it's addictive :D Luca

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There are payware programs simulating ATC that are supposedly light years ahead of FS9 ATC.

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However, if you do want to fly with the, default, built in, FS9 ATC it is possible, particularly if you have Fsbuild. The answer is to build a flight plan in Fsbuild and export it to both FS 2000,2002,2004 GPS, and PMDG 737/747. Then load the FS flight plan into the FS flight planner and load the PMDG flight plan into the FMC. Then the FS ATC will no the route your FMC is going to fly.I will agree with the others, though, that the build in ATC is pretty bad. Flying online on VATSIM is great when there are controllers on. And Radar Contact sound like a good alternative, but I can comment more since I don't have it.

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Wilbert, There is another way without using online or Radar Contact. Not that these methods aren't great, I've just not used them yet. The method I use is to create a flight plan in FS9, then convert it to an .rte file using pln2rte.exe (availble at AVSIM and on the web). With the FS9 flight plan loaded, load the converted flight plan (.rte) into the FMC. The routes will be the same, that is until FS9 vectors you off route near your destination. Using this method, it is almost certain your will not follow your FMC approach. You can of course use the ATC 'trick' of not contacting the center on a handoff, then you can probably follow the FMC approach all the way. I plan on trying online flying, since I've heard so much good about it, but until then I use this method. Steve

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Hi Wilbert,I've got Radar Contact 4 and can highly recommend it. Lots better than default ATC and enables you to actually use the full functionality of your PMDG aircraft's FMCs, SID,Stars etc.You can download the manual which will give you an idea of what it's capable of. Steve

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Performance wise, how have you guys found RC4 with the PMDG stuff?Looking to get it but don't want to sacrifice any FPS if I can help it.

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>Performance wise, how have you guys found RC4 with the PMDG>stuff?>>Looking to get it but don't want to sacrifice any FPS if I can>help it.I haven't noticed any penalty except when switching panels (particularily the first time a panel is loaded) or changing view. In those cases FS can stutter.The only problem I have running Radar Contact (would be the same with the default ATC) with the PMDG 747 is related to the waypoints: My flight planner (Super Flight Planner until I buy something like FSBuild) uses the same coordinates for the waypoints as FS does. PMDG uses the updated database. Sometimes that makes the ATC scream wildly at me for not staying on course ;-)/ Jesper

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Aside from the suggestions above, if you feel stuck with the MS ATC, and not sure about Radar Contact yet, you can get by with it in most cases.The best way in IFR conditions with MS ATC is to do the following:1. Make sure your route matches the FS9 plan as mentioned above.2. When given your descent and/or heading vectors, go ahead and follow the descent instructions, but tell the controller to standby while you select another approach.3. Use the runway you're assigned and scroll through the list of approaches. Pick the GPS/RNAV approach for that runway or a parallel one that also active. Select that approach and the IAF (Initial Approach Fix) you want. Then request it from the controller.4. You'll be told to fly to the IAF you selected and cleared for that approach.5. Select that approach and IAF in the FMC and fly directly to that IAF from that point on. The only instructions you'll get will be for descent and those you must follow, but they're usually within normal limits.So say I'm coming from KLAX and arriving at KPHX. I'm told I'm cleared to runway 26 but I'm flying the ARLIN THREE STAR. I tell the controller to standby but follow the descent instructions. I'm heading south of the airport as the ARLIN3 approach has me doing. So I need to land at 25L or maybe 25R, but 26 would be a north approach pattern. I scroll though and select the RNAV approach to 25L and pick IWA as my IAF. Then request it from the controller and select it in the FMC. Move the IWA IAF to the top on the legs page and hit EXEC. The plane will then fly the approach and ATC will only give me descent instructions.http://myairplane.com/databases/approach/pdfs/00322ARLIN.PDFhttp://myairplane.com/databases/approach/pdfs/00322R25L.PDF

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The one thing I do like about FS9 ATC is the warnings concerning crossing paths while taxi, takeoffs and landings of other aircraft. Does Radar Contact have this capability?

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Jesp,There is *always* a soloution for everything ;o) - After exporting the plan from Super Flight Planner, you can then convert that .pln to .rte to use in the PMDG aircraft. The PMDG guys will correct me, but when importing that .rte into the FMC, the co-ordinates of the waypoints contained are read directly from the .rte and not from PMDG's internal database. Since the .rte came from your orginal .pln (which you would import into RC) all waypoints are identical.Or, if you prefer to manually enter all the waypoints into PMDG's FMC, in which case you'll really want your PMDG and SFP database the same, you can go to www.navdata.at where you download the latest AIRIC cycle for PSS. Super Flight Planner has a utility to then convert these PSS navdata files to SFP format, which you can import and use in SFP (ie giving you the latest navdata database in SFP AND PMDG).Let me know if you need any more information with the above, I'll only be more than happy to help. You can also post at the RC forum here at Avsim and we can help you there too.Subin.

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RC has very little (not noticeable) impact with FPSs. I think the biggest degredation we have heard of is 1 FPS.If you have any more questions about RC, feel free to ask at the RC forum which is also here at Avsim.Subin

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RC prevents AI from interfereing with you while you're on final/landing (doesn't allow AI to overtake you, and speeds up AI in front so you don't overtake them).You'll only be given a take off clearance if the approach path to the runway is clear.While enroute, you'll be given traffic information about the AI around you, and likewise, they will recieve information about you.While RC may tell you 'follow the 777' to the runway in use, RC doesn't provide any seperation while on the ground. We have looked into this and discussed it at length, and it is just not possible at this time.As always, you're free to ask any questions you like at the RC forum here at Avsim. A very knowledgeable and friendly bunch, ready to help.Subin

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Hi Subin,Thanks for the help :-)>The PMDG guys will correct me, but when importing that .rte into>the FMC, the co-ordinates of the waypoints contained are read>directly from the .rte and not from PMDG's internal database. Great, I for some reason I got the impression that the PMDG FMC still would use its own coordinates. I already have the program to convert from pln to rte. I just never used it, since I don't find it a problem entering the waypoints directly into the FMC.>Or, if you prefer to manually enter all the waypoints into>PMDG's FMC, in which case you'll really want your PMDG and SFP>database the same, you can go to www.navdata.at where you>download the latest AIRIC cycle for PSS. Super Flight Planner>has a utility to then convert these PSS navdata files to SFP>format, which you can import and use in SFP (ie giving you the>latest navdata database in SFP AND PMDG).I wasn't aware of this either. Super, I'll take a look at it.

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If you want to test it out yourself, go to SFP and insert a random waypoint somewhere, called TEST. Create a flightplan that passes though TEST, and export that to default FS9 .pln. Convert that to .rte using the utility, and open the new .rte in notepad - it includes the new TEST waypoint (that is not in the PMDG internal database). Import it into the FMC - on the legs page it'll show you the TEST waypoint too.But if you are going to use current charts etc for planning and you want the current database to match, it's quite easy. What we're going to do is convert all the navaids, fixes, airways etc from PSS and convert it to a .sfd that SFP can import. This doesn't contain airports though, so we'll then make another .sfd which contains only the FS9 airports. We'll finally merge both the .sfd files to make a single .sfd for SFP that contains all navaids, fixes, airways, AND airports. Ok here we go:From www.navdata.at download the latest navdata for PSS. Once downloaded, install it - it should install to FS2004PSSNavData.In your main SFP folder, run the file "spftools.exe". Click "Convert Airic Cycle", make sure the path points to FS2004PSSNavData. Make sure all checkboxes are ticked, and then Convert. It'll ask you to save in SFP format, so call it something like "Converted_From_PSS.sfd". That'll go ahead make the .sfd with all navaids.Now to make the .sfd with only the airports. Run the file "sfpdbwiz.exe" also in your main SFP folder. Make sure all areas are ticked (top half), and in the bottom half tick all except VOR, NDB, Intersections, and Airways. (These navaids are the new ones from the PSS datbase). The remaining Airports, ILS, Markers, Aprons, Strip Duplicates, should be checked, and click Convert. That'll ask you to save a new .sfd - call it somethin glike "Converted Airports.sfd".Now run "spftools.exe" again, "Merge SFD Databases", click "Add", select both the .sfd files you just created, and "Open". They should appear in the box. Now click "Merge". It'll ask you again to save a new .sfd (call it "Converted_To_Use.sfd or something).Now when you go to SFP, all you have to do is open the "Converted_To_Use.sfd" and all your FS airports, as well as the latest AIRIC database (which will also be the same as your latest PMDG database) is available to use in flightpanning in SFP.Note that you don't have to convert the airports database all the time a new AIRIC cycle is out. I only included it here as a first-time-run only. You can always merge your old airports .sfd with each new converted AIRIC cycle.Also don't forget to download the PMDG database everytime you do this otherwise it defeats the purpose of 'staying current' ;o)Regardless of if you plan to download and convert each new AIRIC cycle as it becomes available, remember you can always just export to a .pln file, then convert that to .rte. This will ensure both ATC (RC) and 747 (PMDG) knows what you plan to do when you get in the air.And finally, I believe the entering of each induvidual waypoint into the FMC is unrealistic as normally a company route is entered into the ROUTE PAGE which then loads all the waypoints automatically. This is replicated nicely for us simmers, by exporting a .pln/.rte from your flightplanner (SFP) and inputting that into the FMC as if it were a company route :()Subin

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