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cavaricooper

Cross the Pond 2007

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Well, I just finished my first transatlantic crossing- and what a format to do it in! Never having flown "across the pond" I saw the announcement 2 weeks ago and I signed up for a 1350z slot time. Spent the past couple of weeks pouring over NATS info, playing with Dan Down's fuel calculator, trying to make heads and tails of FSBuild and picking my mate (Steve B's) brain as he's a long haul pro. Got up early this morning and the NATS tracks were up. I looked them over and decided on track C. FMS fed (manually no less) and fuel calculated 3 times (just to be sure) I was ready. Logged in and SquawkBox promptly kicked me off- arrrggggh! Kept at it and KEWR was a sea of red- a/c labels everywhere!Got my clearance and push and there I was turning 4, with airplanes wingtip to wingtip. Never had I seen so many Concordes in one place!Taxi was a long line of heavy metal, and just as I turned on to B, freeze! I don't remember who the poor guy behind me was, but eventually he asked if I was going to move on up the line- nope- disconnect and total restart.Re-program the FMS by hand, 1 wpt at a time (yes, I know you can upload- but it seemed like a good idea to practice- initally). I rejoined at the holding area at the threshold, and thank God the controller was feeling generous. He held up the Conga line, and squeezed me in #1!She was heavy today, and with the derate- asphalt rolled inexorably until VR and then we were off! Climbing to 5000 I was held there for what seemed forever (separation). Eventually I was cleared to 17000 with frequent level-offs in between. Boston saw me to 200 and then FL250. Moncton was trying for adequate separation for Gander, and Gander was a first- radio reporting at waypoints- wow- hadn't really given that much thought until a 767 passed overhead with 2000 feet of separation- in non controlled airspace. Suddenly standard altimeter settings and ltitude control seemed less trivial.He was kind enough to take a screenshot of the passing, so I will have a momento of my first Atlantic passage- thanks UAL907! Gander handed off to Shanwick and then all of a sudden we were in Shannon and under radar control again. Never was I so glad to get a squak code!Handed off to London North and I was home! Superb controlling all around- but London is just something special (ok, Wien too. Step descents, with airspeed coming back and suddenly I was on home turf- after all how many times had I flown G-CIVA on the BOVA4A arrival- but this time there was a twist- hold at Bovingdon- yikes! A spiral descent in the hold and then cleared to London South- speed coming back- then up to 220kts for spacing, back again to 160 (spacing) and there we were sliding down the ILS for 27L. A puff of smoke and we were down, high speed exit S6 and a left on S to Tango and chocked at Stand 407. Super.The point in all this is I never would have done it without Dan's program and Steve B's SIDSSTARS and Steve B. From pre-flight to chocks he was with me all the way- chatting on my blackberry- watching on ServInfo- we had a lot of fun- I learned a lot and it was almost like he was there with me working the flaps and gear andgiving advice and encouragement.Thanks PMDG for a glorious aircraft- and thanks to this forum, for collecting a fine group of enthusiasts, ready and willing to help- its a great pastime isn't it?How many other PMDG drivers were sharing those crowded skies.....??Best- Carl F. Avari-Cooper BAW0225http://online.vatsimindicators.net/980091/523.png


Best-

Carl Avari-Cooper

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>Never was I so glad to get a squak code!I've flown my fair share of North Atlantic flights but never online. I'm guessing that this also happens in real life too so my question is, why didn't you have a squak code in NATs?That it was a fascinating story. Although I've crossed the Atlantic many times and used NATs, I've never looked up the exact procedures. Maybe Radar Contact 5 will have NAT features added! It's also nice to hear that at least in 'our world', Concorde is still alive and strong!Ryan GamurotLucky to live Hawai'ihttp://www.virtualpilots.org/signatures/vpa296.png


Ryan Gamurot
 

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>I'm guessing that this also happens in real life too>so my question is, why didn't you have a squak code in NATs?There are no squawk codes on a NAT because there is no radar available to see you in the middle of the pond. NAT control is basically a very large non-radar environment (similar to a Flight Information Service as it's known in the UK) relying totally on the position reports from aircraft.Sorry I wasn't in my PMDG for CTP yesterday but was having a great time anyway as BAW113 out of Philly. My first transatlantic :)


Bill Casey

wpigeon.jpg

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As far as i know one have to set squawk to 2000 when in the NAT's (correct me if i'm wrong!).So once at the other side and in radar contact they will give you a new Squawk code for the remainder of the flight!


Regards,

William Vrielynck

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I never did reset the transponder to 2000 or anything- same initial squak all through the NATS track until re-establishing positive control in Shannon where they gave me another. I wonder if they dispensed with the 2000 code because of all the traffic- or if they don't do that anymore? Perhaps one of our RW 744 pilots can advise?BTW- I failed to mention a big thank-you to all the fine folks at VATSIM who made this possible. From clearance at KEWR to ground at EGLL- it was great to have controllers throughout. Each was professional and courteous- well done!Don't know about the rest of you, but when simming, the first thing I look at is ServInfo. Its almost no fun without atc at the other end anymore. If you haven't tried it I'd encourage you to give it a go- good people- and turning off the IGS Rwy 13 to land is so much more fun, knowing you need to make it or else cause havoc with the traffic at Chep Lok;).Best-Carl F. Avari-Cooper BAW0225http://online.vatsimindicators.net/980091/523.png


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Carl Avari-Cooper

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Personally, I never fly unless I'm logged onto VATSIM. So, ServInfo is the first thing I start too. =)In all my years on VATSIM, have never run into a controller that was a bad egg - a real professional group. And highly trained too!- Bill


- William Ruppel, CYKF, VATSIM 816871

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I flew KEWR-EGLL in the Queen and I think I made my presence noticed too... I used the internal push-back function of the queen and it wouldn't stop pushing back, so I went through two concourses and several airplanes before I disconnected! :) My wife decided to leave the room with hear hands covering the ears of my baby girl! ;)Anyway it was a TOTAL BLAST the whole event. I did lose connection to VATSIM several times and MSFS froze also, eg during Take off from KEWR. And arriving at EGLL I noticed that the DEP/ARR page in FMC was totally empty for EGLL so I had to fly the approach manually which was great fun. After being in a hold over BIG for about 30 min and getting bingo on fuel! ;) I guess I should have kept to the MACH 0.84 speed over the Atlantic and not Mach 0.90...Anyway, a WONDERFUL event!


Krister Lindén
EFMA, Finland
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