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Rafal

A simmer in a full motion sim

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Peter Hager is a guy making addon aircraft for X-Plane. Working on an A380 he was wondering how good his simulation can be.

And of course, like most of us, he was haunted with the question: can a non-real-world pilot land a 40 million euro full sim of a heavy jet?

Peter's exact question was: Would a desk top pilot, like me, without having even a PPL, be able to fly the real 560 tons monster?

 

I found this great article browsing the web, and would like to share it with you. Have a great reading and maybe tell us what your thoughts are.

http://petersuv.vs12...im_session.html


Rafal Haczek

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I've always maintained that most reasonably experience flight simmers would probably be able to get a real aeroplane up around and down in one piece providing they were not overwhelmed by it all and knew where to find the switches and stuff in a real cockpit, which with the advent of VCs, is fairly likely these days.

 

I daresay it wouldn't be the prettiest circuit ever flown, but so long as they were gentle on the controls, watched the airspeed and were able to anticipate things properly if trying it in a big lumbering jetliner, then there wouldn't be much of a problem. Personally, if I knew someone was a competent flight simmer and had watched them make a few decent landings in FS or X-Plane or whatever, I happily let them take the controls from me and give it a go, because that's really not much different from when an instructor gives you your first shot at doing it after a few lessons.

 

Where things would differ in the A380 for real as opposed to a sim, is that you'd almost certainly need a co-pilot to assist you purely from a physical standpoint, because the flight deck on an A380 is massive, so you'd have a very hard time stretching across the centre pedestal to do all the stuff on the co-pilot's side of the cockpit overhead when strapped in. Made that mistake once when trying out a single seater type that I'd never flown before - being a bit apprehensive, I strapped myself in really tight and then right after take off I realised I was strapped in so tight that I was unable to lean forward far enough to reach the radio LOL. Just one of the little real-life things which a desktop PC is unable to simulate.

 

Al


Alan Bradbury

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right after take off I realised I was strapped in so tight that I was unable to lean forward far enough to reach the radio

 

Lol, I've never thought of that!

And yes, our home sim environments are so comfortable. Especially for the big ones.

I am 190 cm tall and remember that the worst thing in my sailplane training was the annoying tightness of the cabin. And I was 20 years younger than now (read: could stand a lot).

 

I admit I was shocked reading of those 200 loudspeakers in the A380 sim.

And we believe the 5.1 or 7.1 set gives us some immersion!

 

On the other hand that sim is 2000 times more expensive than mine but I am sure it is not 2000 times better (well, maybe just 100 times)! Big%20Grin.gif

 

One thing I would add from my point of view is the motion itself. I miss it very much in my home sim.

I know there are home motion platforms for sale but they are too expensive for me.

On the other hand my office armchair is a bit worn out, so it will sometimes drop a few centimetres down on its own.

When it happens during BOD or, even better, cloud turbulence, I can taste this breeze of the (almost)full motion...


Rafal Haczek

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I've always maintained that most reasonably experience flight simmers would probably be able to get a real aeroplane up around and down in one piece providing they were not overwhelmed by it all and knew where to find the switches and stuff in a real cockpit, which with the advent of VCs, is fairly likely these days.

Al

 

+1


Chris Howard
 

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Are we talking hand flying here?

 

A light aircraft maybe but no way in a commercial airliner....two different bags of bones.


Al Stiff

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I'm pretty sure if everything was setup and all the sim pilot had to do was move the throttles and flight controls they could do it. It is surprising how easy it is to fly planes.


Chris Miller

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Are we talking hand flying here? A light aircraft maybe but no way in a commercial airliner....

 

Well, Al, during his hour Peter had a good amount of hand flying, including landings.

And the instuctor found his landings 'not bad'. Peter does not even have a PPL.

 

Of course it is still a sim (though a 100% exact one), but I don't think any simmer would get a chance to fly the airliner itself. :pardon:


Rafal Haczek

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Great post Rafal!


Gavin Barbara

 

Over 10 years here and AVSIM is still my favourite FS site :-)

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Well, Al, during his hour Peter had a good amount of hand flying, including landings.

And the instuctor found his landings 'not bad'. Peter does not even have a PPL.

 

Of course it is still a sim (though a 100% exact one), but I don't think any simmer would get a chance to fly the airliner itself. :pardon:

 

Now I ask this, is "not bad" the same as "we didn't crash"? :Big Grin:

 

First things first. This is a great discussion Rafal (and great post too, thanks for sharing that link).

 

Friends who come in my office, see my yoke and after trying a few patterns ask the same question again and again . "Could you land a big jet if the pilots got sick?" And I always say, "I know how to tell the airplanes computer to land but I would never try to hand fly the landing if in that situation".

 

Don't get me wrong. I think desktop simming is a great tool for flying, learning systems and so on. Heck the real airlines use CBT for systems and such. Former Zoom airlines head pilot Mike Simmons told me they issued a copy of the same LVD we use for guys to learn the FMC. Desktop flying has made me very savy (my airline pilot friends are blown away by what computer flying has taught me about airliners). I also think desktop flying is a great tool for IFR flying as you are relying 100% on the instruments and 0% on outside forces and that pesky wind screen.

 

But for hand flying it is my personal opinion you need time in the real deal.

 

I have a mere +20hrs dual and while the sim is great for technique it is nothing like the feel of real flying (to me). Not to mention FSX has terrible physics compared to some other flight sims I have played (for example ROF and IL-2 have much better physics in IMO).

 

I also used to be an avid computer racer (Grand Prix Legends) and we used to see this same topic (could you drive a real race car). While great for learning the track layouts and technique it doesn't mean I would be a great race car driver.

 

And one last thing just for the record (and it beefs up the YES gang argument). I ask Mike Simmons how real the CAE LVD sims are and he said they are 99.9% as good as the real deal.


Al Stiff

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You would have to get the Saitek adrenaline pump to simulate the "my life in my hands" feeling of real flying. I fly a little RV-9a and when the winds is beating the plane and your hand is on the stick the wind oscillations contribute to pilot induced oscillations and it all goes bonkers. It gets crazy when trying to hold a glideslope!

 

I have never had that feeling in FSX or XPX.

 

Now imagine being at the controls of a complex heavy jet with 100s of switches and 100s of people counting on you.

 

I don't think it could happen, fear is defeated only with experience.

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Personally, if I knew someone was a competent flight simmer and had watched them make a few decent landings in FS or X-Plane or whatever, I happily let them take the controls from me and give it a go, because that's really not much different from when an instructor gives you your first shot at doing it after a few lessons.

 

I'm no flight instructor, but I wouldn't want to be in the back seat of that flight. Landing in FSX or X-Plane does not compare nicely to real world landings. I've seen students during my training making great landings in a flight sim while my head would have hit the roof each landing when I flew along in the backseat during one of their training flights, if it weren't for the seatbelts .

 

I would at the very least show them how to do it in a real plane several times, while along the way perhaps asking questions to check if they picked stuff up from it, and than let them have a go. It wil depend on the person basically. Do they have an eye and a feeling for it or not? But again, that's just me.

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