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Aircraft recommendation for a learner?

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I am only a few months into this hobby and, apart from a few sample flights in other aircraft, I've been learning in the default Cessna 172 and 182 craft. I now have the urge to step-up to something bigger like a small jet and learn that. I'm not a purist and fly with FS aircraft easy settings - I'm happy just to get off the ground fly VFR taking in the scenery and then land without too much bumping! Last night I tried the default Learjet which was the right kind of thing but it has only a 2D cockpit and I prefer 3D with smooth panning views. I have FS2002 standard (not Pro) so no Beech. Any recommendations for a freeware jet suitable for a learner and not too big a step-up from the Cessna prop planes? The Embraers with Bill Grabowski's panel caught my eye but there are so many good looking add-ons on the AVSIM library I'd appreciate some guidance from more experienced folks.Thanks, John.4m NW of EGHI (Southampton UK)FS2002 Standard on Intel PIII 733 MHz, 256MB with 32M GeForce2MX graphics and Windows ME.

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Johno,Welcome to the club !!!Lots of room for 'subjective' opinion here, but you probably would like to start with something fairly forgiving and with some predictability in the handling. The really small jets, generally are probably not the best place to start. I would recommend say, a 737-300 from Project Freeware. The biggest difference in all the jets is response time. 737's (new generation) and 757's sorta fly like they're on rails (nice). After you get comfortable with them, then move to the more squirrely stuff. This sim is great fun, lots of stuff to learn and do. Seems like most folks that really like it and get over the initial learning curve become addicted to it. Don't know about the 3-D cockpits, I have always been satisfied with the 2-d and use my own concoctions.Smooth flights and happy landings...Bob

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>I would >recommend say, a 737-300 from Project Freeware. The biggest >difference in all the jets is response time. 737's (new >generation) and 757's sorta fly like they're on rails >(nice). After you get comfortable with them, then move to >the more squirrely stuff.Have to agree with you there, Bob. Way back, I thought it would be a good idea to start with a smaller jet and work my way up... I found that I should have started with a heavier aircraft and work my way down. The little ones are just twitchy as heck when compared to the 737s and 757s.OTOH, Yannick Lavigne's Falcon 50 is a great little airplane which isn't too squirrelly. It's a rather big download, but well worth it.

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Right on,The Falcon 50 (CAEA) would probably be the next step. A good handling small jet (a little 'slippery', but controllable). The only problem I had with it was a slight pull to the right on takeoff roll. Easily correctible, not a serious drawback. The great part is all those incredible interior views. What an aircraft !! Thanks again Yannick.Cheers, Bob

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Bob and Bill: Many thanks for the advice. I simplistically thought it best to start small and go progressively larger. I had already downloaded the Falcon based on the rave reviews here on AVSIM so will give that a try.Cheers, John.4m NW of EGHI (Southampton UK)FS2002 Standard on Intel PIII 733 MHz, 256MB with 32M GeForce2MX graphics and Windows ME.

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Howdy JohnSmaller isn't necessarily easier. :-)I found navigating from point A to B in smaller aircraft that use analog VOR gauges can be more difficult than many of the latest airliners using Glass Cockpits and FMC's.IMHO the best aircraft package if your interested in large jets, is the Phoenix Airbus A320. It's not overwelming, yet highly accurate. The manuals are excellent and most important, there are several step by step tutorial flights that make learning to fly this aircraft a joy. I know this is not a freeware package and your computer specs might not be adiquite but for others that might be asking themselves a similar question I thought I would suggest it.SteveCYYZ

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I'm right there with you, Steve...If you're flying with the analog dials and a small aircraft you do have to suffer through the "What the heck does that thing say, anyhow???" and problems with how twitchy the aircraft is. Looking back, I wish I'd made the transition to jets not with the Lear 35 and such but with a 737 or A320.Simply put, the mid-sized airliners are easier to handle. They're not as twitchy as the smaller jets and not nearly as ponderous and difficult as the heavies. Besides, all of the smaller Airbus and more modern 737 series aircraft are just about the easiest aircraft in the world to handle. Point it in the right direction and it handles itself.

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Well, my personal recommendation for a mid-sized "learner's jet" would be (no kidding) the de Havilland Comet by David Maltby. Yes, she is a veteran, but one of the most forgiving jets that I can think of. Takeoffs can be made at 130 knots and landings at 120, but she doesn't particularly mind steep climbouts either, and has a fairly good cruise speed - around M 0.81. Get her here: http://www.maltbyd.fsnet.co.uk/ .Just my

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My suggestion is to stay with the 172 and learn all it can do...try planning flights into busy airspace, calculating time and fuel , etc...explore IFR such as learn to fly an NDB approach to your favorite airport... this is harder than anything you'll do in a 737 in the sim.just a thought.. you can spend 300 hours in this sim doing different things with a 172

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Last night I got to try (only briefly) the Falcon 50, default 737-400 and the new Project Airbus A320 and, as predicted in this thread, I found them all easier than the Learjet. I've not yet decided which one to go forward with. but the choosing will keep me amused... :-)Thanks to all for your suggestions and recommendations.Cheers, John.4m NW of EGHI (Southampton UK)FS2002 Standard on Intel PIII 733 MHz, 256MB with 32M GeForce2MX graphics and Windows ME.

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Thanks rlogue.I agree there's plenty more I can learn and do with the 172 and I intend to do that but I also fancy a bit of longer-haul stuff with a jet as well - I like a bit of variety in my play.Cheers, John.4m NW of EGHI (Southampton UK)FS2002 Standard on Intel PIII 733 MHz, 256MB with 32M GeForce2MX graphics and Windows ME.

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