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Guest krom0025

Understanding Intersections

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I am looking for some help understanding how to identify intersections on enroute charts. How do I know which two VORs and radials make up a given intersection? It doesn't show anything on the chart except for the name of the intersection and coordinates of the fix. The chart does include all of the VOR stations and there frequencies but I don't know which ones a given intersection consists of. I am trying to do some VOR nagivation without any gps. Thanks in advance for your help.-BrianEdit: I have one other question too. I usually use FSbuild to set up my flight plans. Somtimes the the flight plan will contain multiple intersections in a row. I could just fly to an intersection and then turn to the heading of the next one and fly the distance, but that doesn't seem very accurate. What is the best way to navigate between intersections using only radio navigation?

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When I had FSNav it was easy, because you could get bearings. Now, when I look at an enroute chart I have the same question. For intersections I want to nail by radio navigation, I create an FS flight plan tht includes the intersection, then drag the course line to a nearby VOR to get the radial. Very cumbersome, but it works fine if you have just a few, such as in a SID.I'll be looking for a good answer to this question, too.

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I am looking for some help understanding how to identify intersections on enroute charts. How do I know which two VORs and radials make up a given intersection? It doesn't show anything on the chart except for the name of the intersection and coordinates of the fix. The chart does include all of the VOR stations and there frequencies but I don't know which ones a given intersection consists of. I am trying to do some VOR nagivation without any gps. Thanks in advance for your help.-Brian
You don't have the correct charts. I'm not sure what you are using, but they sound worthless for radio navigation. If you had a plotter you might be able to use them, but it would be easier to have the correct charts.If you want to get away from the FMC and GPS you need hi- or low-altitude navigation charts that depicts airways as well as nav-aids, intersections, frequencies, airports, milage, etc.JepChart1.jpg

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I'm not sure which enroute chart you are using, but NOAA charts show the radials from the VOR. Just follow the line back to the VOR and the radial is listed inside the 'rose' or close to it. Set NAV 1 and 2 to the radials shown, and when they both center you are there. They also show the DME in a square block if there is more than one 'leg' to that radial, or a number under the airway ID.If you go to www.airnav.com you can get every type of US chart you need, free. When you click on a Sectional chart, in the upper right corner there are links to the enroute charts.

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You don't have the correct charts. I'm not sure what you are using, but they sound worthless for radio navigation. If you had a plotter you might be able to use them, but it would be easier to have the correct charts.If you want to get away from the FMC and GPS you need hi- or low-altitude navigation charts that depicts airways as well as nav-aids, intersections, frequencies, airports, milage, etc.JepChart1.jpg
I use the enroute charts from navigraph. They have all the airways, intersections, frequencies, etc. I'm fairly new to reading these, so I am interested in figuring out just how to know which two VORs define an intersection. Some intersections are not on an airway for example.

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Then you need a plotter for the scale of chart you are using.It's much easier to just stay on an airway. Why make it more difficult than it is?If you are flying bug smashers VFR, then I can see you doing that. I had to learn it too. But we didn't use intersections often, if ever. It was VOR to VOR, or NDB. You might get vectored to an intersection for sequencing, but if VFR you'd probably never know it.

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Then you need a plotter for the scale of chart you are using.It's much easier to just stay on an airway. Why make it more difficult than it is?If you are flying bug smashers VFR, then I can see you doing that. I had to learn it too. But we didn't use intersections often, if ever. It was VOR to VOR, or NDB. You might get vectored to an intersection for sequencing, but if VFR you'd probably never know it.
Thanks, I appreciate your response. That helps a lot. I guess i will just try to stay on airways and that will be as easy as flying between VORs.

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And as the Skunk said, just go VOR to VOR, I've yet to have FS ATC vector me to an intersection :-) Better yet, go GPS direct, saves fuel :-)

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I'm not sure which enroute chart you are using, but NOAA charts show the radials from the VOR. Just follow the line back to the VOR and the radial is listed inside the 'rose' or close to it. Set NAV 1 and 2 to the radials shown, and when they both center you are there. They also show the DME in a square block if there is more than one 'leg' to that radial, or a number under the airway ID.If you go to www.airnav.com you can get every type of US chart you need, free. When you click on a Sectional chart, in the upper right corner there are links to the enroute charts.
I went to skyvector.com but didn't see any charts like that. That looks fantastic. How do you get it?I still think being able to find intersections by radio navigation is useful, and fun. If you are flying classic airliners without FMCs it is pretty important.

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I went to skyvector.com but didn't see any charts like that. That looks fantastic. How do you get it?I still think being able to find intersections by radio navigation is useful, and fun. If you are flying classic airliners without FMCs it is pretty important.
Go to www.airnav.com, it links to skyvector....Click the Airports tab and type in a ICAO code or name then ENTERScroll down until you see a small Sectional chart on the right side and open thatWhen it opens, look in the upper right corner, you will see additional chart optionsYou can 'grab' any chart by holding down your mouse button and drag them or you can also zoom in and out.All US approach plates are in Airnav as well. It has every single thing you need for flying in the US and its all current and free, an amazing resourse.

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Wow. I've used airnav a lot, but never found this before. This is amazing. Thanks.

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This is good stuff :( The most realistic side of MSFS, is instrument navigation. It's replicated so well, that if you can do it in the sim.. you can do it for real.... AND (with proper hardware and a CFII looking over your shoulder), you can log up to 10 hours toward earning your instrument rating.For VFR navigation (like you're doing).. just do it like you would for real. Flying VOR-to-VOR works well enough... but it can be an inefficient course, at best. Half the fun of virtual flying; is virtual flight-planning. Aside from deciding what your mission will be (destination, people and baggage to be carried).. figuring out how you'll get there is fun (and educational), too.Of course, run real weather (with winds aloft), so that real-world weather briefings are applicable. Have a good mental image of how your heading and ground-speed will be affected, so that you can plan potential fuel stops, based on how much fuel, your passenger/baggage load will allow. If visibility looks "iffy" anywhere along the route, be sure to have those approach-plates at the ready.Then.. make your own VOR radial intersections. It can be as simple as the airport itself (even just a DME reading along a single radial), or it can be a series of custom way-points, that will give you a more direct route.The narrative for this simple flight could be:Take off; fly a wind-corrected heading toward the destination, waiting to intercept EITHER the 090 radial from VOR2 OR the 200 radial from VOR1; make a heading adjustment until both CDIs are near center; continue on the wind-corrected heading; wait to intercept EITHER the 280 radial from VOR1 OR the 030 radial from VOR2; make a heading adjustment until both CDIs near center; continue on the wind-corrected heading to the destination; intercept EITHER the 300 radial from VOR1 OR the 350 radial from VOR2; make a heading adjustments... and as the two CDIs center.. TA DA.. you should see the airport. OR Use VORs for enroute, airspace avoidance... Pick a radial that's tangent to the airspace.. use it as reference until you're safely past the big airport..The GPS is invaluable during real flight. But using it in MSFS cheats you out of a great learning (and practice) experience. Finding your way to unfamiliar airports by radio navigation skill, is fun and satisfying. ANYbody can follow a little line on a GPS moving map :(

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Having a constant mental picture of where you are based on instrument interpretation is the number one key to succesfully learning instrument navigation. If you lose your SA, it's very disorienting and can be extremely dangerous in some situations.This is the key to learnig to use VOR's and NDB's. You have to know where you are in your head and on the chart at all times.Nice tutorial there.

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This is good stuff :( The most realistic side of MSFS, is instrument navigation. It's replicated so well, that if you can do it in the sim.. you can do it for real.... AND (with proper hardware and a CFII looking over your shoulder), you can log up to 10 hours toward earning your instrument rating.
Sorry but I have to take exception to that. While FS is great for learning, you cannot log any time with it, it is not an FAA certified and approved sim.

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Wow. I've used airnav a lot, but never found this before. This is amazing. Thanks.
Glad to help

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Sorry but I have to take exception to that. While FS is great for learning, you cannot log any time with it, it is not an FAA certified and approved sim.
No apologies needed.. But I'll take re-exception. I've set up FAA approved PCATDs using both FS9 and FSX. There's one sitting in our club's training room as I type this. And, the other club at our airport (KOSU) uses this : http://www.flypfc.com/pcatds/cat%20iv/CAT%20IV.html(look at the bottom of that page for the approved software)Here's a link from their club:http://www.capitalcityaviation.com/aircraft.asp(You'll see that simulator listed among their "Aircraft")I logged 10 hours of my instrument training on both FS9 & FSX (with the approved hardware)

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Great thread. I remember the first time I learned about this was in Lago's original Maddog tutorial. I've been interested ever since, and recently got some navigraph charts, but they are not useful for this, as I don't see any with compass roses (and printing out, etc. would be impractical.)Love the mini-tutorial. Now make adjusting for wind as simple and I'll be really happy :-)

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No apologies needed.. But I'll take re-exception. I've set up FAA approved PCATDs using both FS9 and FSX. There's one sitting in our club's training room as I type this. And, the other club at our airport (KOSU) uses this : http://www.flypfc.com/pcatds/cat%20iv/CAT%20IV.html(look at the bottom of that page for the approved software)Here's a link from their club:http://www.capitalcityaviation.com/aircraft.asp(You'll see that simulator listed among their "Aircraft")I logged 10 hours of my instrument training on both FS9 & FSX (with the approved hardware)
FSX alone on a PC is of no use for legal logging as far as the FAA is concerned. The addition of appropriate hardware may change that.However, legalities aside, as far as just practice that is not intended to be loggable, FSX is perfect for instrument flight. Where it falls down is in the visual illusions that relate to VFR flight. If you have never flown, then the chances are that using FSX is introducing distortions that will be hard to overcome later if you ever attempted real flight. It's all to do with presenting a 3D world on a 2D screen that is only several feet away from your eye, there is no depth of field at all. This becomes an issue as new pilots learn by visualization, and it's hard to do that when your brain has been learning from a computer screen.But, if you already have your private VFR license and are practising IFR, it is perfect. One of the hardest things to do for a VFR pilot is to focus on instruments that are only several feet away from your eye. And of course if you never intend to fly, then none of this matters.Bruce.

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No apologies needed.. But I'll take re-exception. I've set up FAA approved PCATDs using both FS9 and FSX. There's one sitting in our club's training room as I type this. And, the other club at our airport (KOSU) uses this : http://www.flypfc.com/pcatds/cat%20iv/CAT%20IV.html(look at the bottom of that page for the approved software)Here's a link from their club:http://www.capitalcityaviation.com/aircraft.asp(You'll see that simulator listed among their "Aircraft")I logged 10 hours of my instrument training on both FS9 & FSX (with the approved hardware)
I'll have to take your word on that, last I knew only 'On Top' and now a version of X Plane were certified for use. I poked around the FAA site but I don't have the time to wade through all that stuff today. If it's true you can use FS to log time, thats great, and certainly is an eye opener.

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FSX alone on a PC is of no use for legal logging as far as the FAA is concerned. The addition of appropriate hardware may change that.However, legalities aside, as far as just practice that is not intended to be loggable, FSX is perfect for instrument flight. Where it falls down is in the visual illusions that relate to VFR flight. If you have never flown, then the chances are that using FSX is introducing distortions that will be hard to overcome later if you ever attempted real flight. It's all to do with presenting a 3D world on a 2D screen that is only several feet away from your eye, there is no depth of field at all. This becomes an issue as new pilots learn by visualization, and it's hard to do that when your brain has been learning from a computer screen.But, if you already have your private VFR license and are practising IFR, it is perfect. One of the hardest things to do for a VFR pilot is to focus on instruments that are only several feet away from your eye. And of course if you never intend to fly, then none of this matters.Bruce.
Exactly... In fact, in some ways, it's even better than real instrument flying (especially hood flying), because you usually DO have some sort of periferal reference (unless you fly in the clouds ..lol). It forces you to relyy soley on the instruments. Even the stubourn FAA finally gave in, admiting that PCATDs are very valuable instrument trainers. Not only can you limit visibility... there are no physical sensations at all. Just you, the controls and a set of instruments.Personally.. it helped me master compass turns. It replicates them perfectly.
I'll have to take your word on that, last I knew only 'On Top' and now a version of X Plane were certified for use. I poked around the FAA site but I don't have the time to wade through all that stuff today. If it's true you can use FS to log time, thats great, and certainly is an eye opener.
FSX (even FS9) are better than OnTop or X-Plane. Arguably they're "equal", for instrument replication.. so that leaves model-utility and what little, scenic emerssion there is. Popping out of the clouds with a runway in sight while running OnTop, is an ugly, clunky thing. ... especially transitioning into a flare, or executing a go-around. FSX is far superior there. I have no experience with X-Plane on a PCATD

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Great thread. I remember the first time I learned about this was in Lago's original Maddog tutorial. I've been interested ever since, and recently got some navigraph charts, but they are not useful for this, as I don't see any with compass roses (and printing out, etc. would be impractical.)Love the mini-tutorial. Now make adjusting for wind as simple and I'll be really happy :-)
Welll.. if you notice.. I allow for the fact that your best-estimate will not be good enough... The chances of you hitting your imaginary waypoints exaclty are slim. By the time you make the first correction (after intercepting just one radial, and seeing how far you must fly before both needles center), you'll get a good feel for the next leg.Remember.. winds aloft forecasts are never perfect; in neither direction nor velocity... So not only are these excersises fun.. they hone your skills. The drills that they put student pilots through, are mis-leading. They make you take your true heading, and then E6B it by the winds aloft forecast.. and then adjusting for true vs magnetic.. and then allowing for even the silly compass deviation (errors due to the airframe and compass itself).... and you end up with an "EXACT" heading to fly. That heading is of no more use than an experienced pilot's estimations. As mentioned.. the wind forecasts are never perfect.. and no pilot alive can hold a heading +/- 1 degree for more than a mile ... Those drills are to drill the concepts into heads that here-to-for have NO navigation experience. For that, they are invaluable. You can't make educated guesses, until the fundemental forces in play are understood.

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Exactly... In fact, in some ways, it's even better than real instrument flying (especially hood flying), because you usually DO have some sort of periferal reference (unless you fly in the clouds ..lol). It forces you to relyy soley on the instruments. Even the stubourn FAA finally gave in, admiting that PCATDs are very valuable instrument trainers. Not only can you limit visibility... there are no physical sensations at all. Just you, the controls and a set of instruments.Personally.. it helped me master compass turns. It replicates them perfectly.FSX (even FS9) are better than OnTop or X-Plane. Arguably they're "equal", for instrument replication.. so that leaves model-utility and what little, scenic emerssion there is. Popping out of the clouds with a runway in sight while running OnTop, is an ugly, clunky thing. ... especially transitioning into a flare, or executing a go-around. FSX is far superior there. I have no experience with X-Plane on a PCATD
I agree. I have owned many "serious" ifr sim platforms and fsx imho does the whole experience better. It isn't just about looking at instruments-it is also clouds/weather effects, sounds, terrain, and I always found if you are flying a "generic" aircraft that doesn't resemble the one you fly in terms of instruments and instrument location that the value is much less.Fsx allows this.Mastering complex instrument procedures-being able to push a pause button if needed so one can understand what is going on is very valuable.The new Real Air Duke has just as much smoothness in instruments in addition to more real "feel" than some of those "serious" ifr trainers. (If I recall-on top doesn't use rudder pedals-at least the version I had!). I have been zooming in on the Duke's panel like a virtual hood-and I don't think there is much closer to flying a complex twin on instruments than what you get here-and besides it really feels like a Beech!On the other hand-it is much easier for a layman like me to make a custom panel of their own aircraft and tweak the flight model to get it just right-and my case the multi engine/systems failures of xplane make it just as compelling-so I use both fsx and xplane.

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That zoomed in, "hood" effect is great.. done it many times.. But I prefer to to set the visibility to something less than a mile, and see how many times I can catch myself "cheating" a peek over the panel (and STILL not seeing anying but white !)That Duke looks amazing.. I'm gonna grab it tonight. I'd imagine that shooting a complicated, DME-arc, multi-step descent, VOR-A approach, with one dead engine can leave you soaked in sweat..LOL.. My cousin (5,000 hour, law enforcement helo-pilot) and I used to get together for on-line, shared-cockpit, instrument approaches. It can get pretty intense when there's someone there to keep you honest..

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