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When do real airliner pilots activate the automatic pil

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Hi there,I would like to know when do real airliner pilots activate the automatic pilot after taking off. Also, is there any predefined sequence they activate heading, altitude and speed option until established on course.Thanks in advance.Gig

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Well, I'm not a real pilot (just a wannabe pilot ;-) ), but this is the procedure I use: As soon as I lift off with a positive rate of climb, I retract the landing gear, flaps, and hit the autopilot (Alt, Hdg, IAS). Oh, I only do this when flying the heavy metal. Usually when flying the regional aircraft (Dash 8, King Air, etc), I fly them manually. More fun!Anyhow, it would be interesting to hear the "correct" procedure from a real pilot I'm sure.Gord NoseworthyNewfoundland, Canada (CYYT)

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That's exactly what I do, but would like to know if it that's how it is done in the real life. In other words, is there some general rule or this is done at pilots discretion.Thanks Flash.

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Im a real pilot for Delta flying the 757 and 767. It varies a lot between pilots on when you turn on the autopilot really. There is no set procedure for it either. Personally I like to get the aircraft above 10,000 and accelerating to planned climb speed then i usually turn on the autopilot. I turn it off again as soon as we get somewhere around 8-10 miles on final. At large hi volume airports your under close control with speed and altitude so its more like your a robot then a pilot:) When at outlying and smaller airports you do a lot more handflying. As to how we turn things on....mostly we have the modes already set up shortly after takeoff and have flight director guidance and autothrottles already on. All we do is flip on the autopilot and it takes over. No real button pushing other than that. Its not quite like that in the sim though but its a limitation of the simulation. Once the autopilots on its pretty realistic in the sim, especially with the nicer designed panels.Hornit

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Hi,I'm not a real pilot, but once I was in the cockpit of a 757-200 during take off. The pilots flew to FL100 manually, and then turned on the A/P. I don't know if there's a 'rule', I guess it's pilots decretion.Egbert

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I can tell you from talking to several of my friends who fly for UAL. Allot of the older pilots who flew the old iron like the 727, DC-10, ect. Still like to hand fly up to cruise altitude. When I flew on July 4th our flight from LAX-LAS the first officer hand flew up to cruise altitude.John

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I really appreciate your responses. Thank you very much.Gig

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I'm not a real life pilot,but I'd like to add that in Europe it mostly depends on SOP's.it also depends on what type of aircraft:obviously a 727 doesn't have the same capabilities in terms of automatisation than an A320.

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