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FS2004 Flight Planner

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When constructing flight plans to Transatlantic or Transpacific flights, or almost any long-range flight from the UK (where I am), the flight planner constructs a plan which when following airways deviates to a position hundreds of miles from the eventual destination.For example, a flight plan from London Heathrow to JFK will be routed to a point in Western Canada or Alaska before returning towards New York.Of course this doesn't happen when a point-to-point great circle plan is used, but this doesn't take into account that an aircraft has to follow airways at either end of the flight - it's unrealistic to expect that a flight will commence and end on a direct great circle, it just doesn't happen.Can anyone suggest a fix for this, or is it something which is irreversibly coded into the system, and can't be changed ??

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Ooooooold fs8/9 story - no fix, default planner is just plain busted that way. Most just use a third party planner, fsbuild, fsnavigator.Free online alternatives: get your route off Flightaware or Routefinder, then stick em into Simroutes or fsroute to create an fs9 formatted plan.regards,Markhttp://www.dreamfleet2000.com/a320/custbanner2.jpgPC Power Silencer 470/3.2HT/2048mb/ATI X1950pro/SB Audigy

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"Can anyone suggest a fix for this?"May I suggest using GPS Direct to have FS9 build a perfect great circle route for Tans-Antlantic flights. By dragging and dropping the red course line in the Edit screen, one can add any ancillary waypoints along the projected route.[/font size=3]

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Hi,My thoughts exactly, but in a smaller typeface! I think the FS9 planner is pretty good for simpletons like me to use and if you don't like the pink line everywhere just print out your plan and fly to that; you have all your heights and bearings etc.Brilliant.Andy.

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Actually, what I've been doing for most FS9 flightplans is creating them in FSX (with its superior flightplanner) and using Gerhard's converter to FS9.PLN. My apologies if I've mixed my metaphors here[/font size] :-)

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Well, I use FS Navigator and RouteFinder, but I can't find a suitable route between northern South America (Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador and maybe Panama) and Europe. If I use RouteFinder, it will take me to Brazil or Boston before "crossing the pond". FS Navigator will produce me some good results, but they are VOR to VOR, so it will be painfully long to program the route on my aircraft's FMC. Does anybody know of a flight planner that doesn't have that problem? Or does any real-world pilot know how is the route?

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Bill - please can you tell me where I can find GPS Direct? It is just the kind of tool I have been looking for!Thanx :)

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You can use it right as you make the FP in FS9. In stead of low/high altitude airways select direct to.It's already part of FS9.And on the GPS just hit the direct to arrow button (it's a D with an arrow through it). Then type in your waypoint and hit enter, viola! Your now track "direct to" your desired waypoint.

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Hi,Is GPS Direct freeware? If it's free I might try it, but if it's payware I'll leave it. It just makes straight lines you fly along, right? Sounds coool. I mean, that's gotta be a lot easier than looking for VORs or those little triangles when you're way up in the sky,in the clouds or the rain.Andy.

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Ack! Pricey software! But yea...Im sure it works really well, custom-waypoints is something I REALLY want in FS2004!

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Just a thought. I wonder if there might be another way round this. I downloaded the CIVA INS package some time ago. Has this package been updated to increase the number of waypoints which can be input (currently limited to 9). It might be possible to contact someone (a pilot or ex-pilot) to find out the lat and long coordinates of the various Atlantic tracks, input these to the INS and save the resultant flight plan for future use by any aircraft. Also, for transatlantic flights, from the UK to North America for example, would it be possible to do the following:Using the in-built flight planner, construct a flight plan for the UK end from the origin to the last airways waypoint, and for the North American end, create another flight from the first airways waypoint to the eventual destination, and yet another flight using the GPS or INS across the Atlantic. Could I "stitch" each of the above plans together , again using the planner built into FS2004, to produce a complete plan for the entire flight ??

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Hi,yet another way is go to Tom Gibson's wonderful site....www.calclassic.com....and download the Ocean Stations package which will place ships at their respective locations in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and enable safe passage across these vast spaces without the aid of a glass cockpit or a GPS!!Andy.

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Hi,I don't have FSX so don't know about this, but an improved flight planner with height references was all I wanted from the new sim! Apart from al the other things as well.Andy.

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I have this same problem, but using a 3rd party planner doesn't solve it. I use super flight planner, probably not as advanced as some payware planners. I create the plans and export them to FS9. They simply won't load. I don't have this problem with most flights...only transatlantic ones. Any thoughts as to why this might be happening? Could I (or the default FS9) be missing navaids...esp in Canada?

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If you would like to be as realistic as possible, get nat_v.4.0.zip from the avsim library. That adds data to FS9 which allows you to plan and operate your flights in North Atlantic airspace as close to the real world as possible.Everyone has a preference, but GPS direct across the Atlantic isn't acceptable in the real world and doesn't hack it on VATSIM either :).Jim Harnes

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>If you would like to be as realistic as possible, get>nat_v.4.0.zip from the avsim library. That adds data to FS9>which allows you to plan and operate your flights in North>Atlantic airspace as close to the real world as possible.>>Everyone has a preference, but GPS direct across the Atlantic>isn't acceptable in the real world and doesn't hack it on>VATSIM either :).>>Jim HarnesJim is exactly correct. GPS direct is really a lack of flight planning.That is a cool link, to add NAT points to the FS9 planner!* Orest

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Very practical discussion (for me at least). One thing that I'm always fuzzy on when flight-planning for RC4 or VOX ATC is the altitudes choice enroute. Any comments please? Also in the FS9.pln the last entries in the wpt strings are 0.000000. Are those altitudes? Does anyone edit them manually?Thanks.

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Just a question that your thread has brought to mind regarding:...."Everyone has a preference,but GPS direct across the Atlantic isn't acceptable in the real world........How many out there actualy sit in front of their PC for the 7 to 10 hrs it takes to cross "the pond" in FS? Personnaly, if I load a long flight,I'll use GPS direct and let the PC fly the majority of the flight all by itself. Then as the flight comes to within 400 nm, or so, of my destination I'll re-file an IFR flight plan using the present position as my starting point and let FS build the proper airway routes to the destination. I either do this, or speed up the flight by 2 or 3x, but that isn't realistic either. I don't mind playing FS for 7 hrs straight, but I don't like looking at simulated water and clouds fot that long and the faster I can get to my destination the better.John M

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Hi Ken,Firstly, CIVA INS is designed for Concorde - hence why the number of waypoints is limited to 9, just like the real aircraft.However, your suggestion about piecing a flight plan together for both sides of the pond isn't too far from a solution. The waypoints for the middle bit (the pond) can be determined each day from this website which shows the daily North Atlantic tracks. https://www.notams.jcs.mil/common/nat.htmlYou'll get a warning about the sites validity but entering it doesn't appear to be a problem. Just find the most suitable entry and exit point for your flight and you should be able to zoom in on the FS9 flight planner and drag the line to each lat/lon. Normally a new waypoint is added for each 10 degrees of longitude.As for flight levels try using the ones for the relevant track.If you need a quick translation...C DOGAL 54/20 53/30 52/40 51/50 DENDU CYMONEAST LVLS NILWEST LVLS 310 320 330 340 350 360 370 380 390This is Track Charlie. Entry point is DOGAL with waypoints at 54N 20W, 53N 30W, 52N 40W, 51N 50W, DEDNU and CYMON. It's a westerly track and suitable flight levels are FL310-390.Hope that helps.

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John,You want to fly long flights but don't want to spend hours in front of the screen. Fair enough but there is an alternative.Radar Contact has a autopilot who will take over the comms leaving you to do other things whilst it flies the aircraft. If can't change heading on 3rd party aircraft with their own autopilots / FMCs etc but in all other respects it has far more realism than the default ATC. And in all probability you wouldn't need to amend your filed plan.I've flown the pond several times and with Concorde the flight is less than 4 hours. Just enough time to get through a couple of sections of the Sunday heavies :-)No refiling flight plans, no time acceleration. Just pure realism :-)Cheers,

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