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Pre-purchase Question

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Hello all:I am the proud owner of every PMDG release except for the Queen. I would like to purchase her, but I have a question.I do all my flights using FS's native flight planner as I'm not sure how to make one up myself for the FMC to use. What I mean is I don't know what the SID's, STAR's, and enroute fixes would be for the flights I make, as I'm not sure how one obtains this information to compose a flight for a route they wish to fly.So generally I fly in heading mode and rely on ATC vectors. And therein is my question....normally on the 737's, as well as the Beeches, I just let FS compose the flight plans, fly them with heading vectors, and finally let ATC vector me to intercept the ILS at which time I manually tune the frequency and punch in the "APP" button to intercept the ILS. However, from what I've read so far, it appears I can't do this in the Queen, because she uses a FMC to control all aspects of flight, which would preclude all of the afore-mentioned method of flying. This is the only thing that has proved to be an impediment in the way of my purchase, as I have no experience with FMC's at all.Can anyone advise ? Also, can anyone advise the method used to come up with a real-world flight plan for punching into the FMC? (SIDs, STARS, Altitudes, Crossing Altitudes, and the like).I know real-world pilots use maps, charts, and experience, but as a simmer, I do not have any of those facilities.Thanks!Richard.

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Hi Richard.I have the Queen and use FSnav4.7 to do my flight planning on. If you do not want to enter all the fixes and sids/stars your self, it has an auto-generate feature, just tell it where your going from and where your going to and it will generate the route for you. You can then export it as an PMDG737NG file, you then load it into the 747 FMC, just enter it under CO ROUTE, the file name of what you called it when you exported it from FSnav, I use the dep and arr ICAO's. I also have FSBuild but cannot comment on that as I have not used it very much, but it does more or less the same thing, exepct its a free standing program, FSNav is a FS9 module. You can use FSNav free for 20 times before you have to pay.A Standard procedures guide can be found at http://smithplanet.com/fs2004/pmdg/index.htmThis guide will take you through standard startup, taxi, takeoff, climb, cruise, approach and landing procedures for the PMDG 747.FSNav is at http://www.fsnavigator.comATBIan

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There is good news and bad news for your situation. THe bad news (but not very bad) is that yes, you do have to use the FMC on this aircraft. The good news is that you can make your flight plan in the FMC as simple as you like. You can even simply enter the departure and destination points into the FMC and let it plot a direct course for you. In flight there is nothing stopping you from using the autopilot in simple heading hold mode and flying according to ATC instructions, if that is what you want.In fact, you can also use the native FS flight planner to plan your route. However, you will need to print out the navlog with all the waypoints. THen, when you program the FMC, it is a simple matter to type these waypoints into the FMCs legs page, and then the FS route will be displayed on the ND. SIDs and STARS are not mandatory if you don't want to use them. More good news is that PMDG does include a very well written guide to using the FMC, just as they did with the 737NG. Its just a matter of taking the time to read it. Finally, many of the old timers here at the forum are always happy to help you learn as long as you ask nicely.Hope this helps,Andrew

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Actually to use the FS9 flight plan, you can open the knee pad in FS and type the info into the FMC without printing. It works just fine that way.

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>Actually to use the FS9 flight plan, you can open the knee>pad in FS and type the info into the FMC without printing. It>works just fine that way.Good idea.

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Thank you gentlemen for your kind and gracious responses!You have given me much to chew on, and I will take it from here.You can be certain I will have more questions to bug you with when I take the FMC plunge, and I promise to ask them nicely! :-)Richard.

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Hi,I would definately say "Take the plunge" you won't regret it.After many years of doing simming the easy way(i thought i would never be able to learn those complicated planes),i decided to try that Level D 767 that everyone was talking about.It took some reading and experimenting(and many crashes...)but i managed to get the plane going where i wanted,and actually get it to land.From there i moved to the PMDG stuff,and now i would not return to planes without a functionning FMC.I think it's a lot easier than it seems.Don't let yourself get scared by the technology(as i did for a long time),it is very manageable.As others have pointed to,the tutorial is very helpful,and will get you going in no time.I hope you decide to give the (extremely)good people from PMDG a chance to prove to you that their product is incredible.I personally just finished a cargo flight from LFPG-HECA and everything went absolutely flawlessely,quite a thrill.Anyway,i'm sure you'll have a ball once you try it.Take careRichard

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