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Need help learning how to land PMDG 747?

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Hey guys. I bought the PMDG 747-400X a while ago. And I still can't land like nice enough, I do pretty good with the default aircraft. But I need help trying to land like those popular FS channels on youtube. My problem is that I can't exactly program the FMC ? Since it's too complicated. I'm not able to use autopilot like in the default planes. Can someone provide me a good youtube tutorial for me ? Thanks !

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Hi Nexuz28, welcome to the forums.


I would very strongly caution against using YouTube as a source for just about anything flying related, especially where it relates to the sim. Most of the videos on there are just downright wrong, or oversimplify things, which will end up causing issues down the line.


Your best bet for learning things related to PMDG's 747 is located here:



I believe #4 is the one where you end up doing a bunch of landings. They also give tips/tricks/pointers in there.



One more thing: it's a forum requirement to sign your (real) name to your posts.

See here if you have questions: http://forum.avsim.n...ill-be-deleted/

Kyle Rodgers

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Do not forget Chapter 5 (normal B747 procedures in list form), Chapter 9 (manual flight techniques), or Chapter 12 (FMC) as other resources. However, you should indeed get familiar with the aircraft by reading the type courses.


Regarding manual landings, I hear and observe that most people retard the throttles at approximately 20 or 30 feet instead of the manual-recommended 50 ft. Make sure your speeds and weights are accurate and realistic (and that you have corrected the speeds for wind). These can be determined manually through using the data tables in the manual, or, better, with the FMC once you learn how to use it through reading the recommended texts.


Owen Zhang

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Hey guys. I bought the PMDG 747-400X a while ago. And I still can't land like nice enough, I do pretty good with the default aircraft. But I need help trying to land like those popular FS channels on youtube. My problem is that I can't exactly program the FMC ? Since it's too complicated. I'm not able to use autopilot like in the default planes. Can someone provide me a good youtube tutorial for me ? Thanks !



try this one

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Peter kelberg

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A good landing starts way back up towards then end of the CRZ phase of the flight...ensure that you have given the FMS as much info as you can in the DESCENT FORECAST Page about wind direction & SPD during the descent. Make sure the STAR (if applicable) & Approach procedure (if applicable) have been loaded correctly into the LEGS Pages & there are no DISCOntinuities & the MAGENTA line traces the black line on the charts. Ensure that the Landing Flap Setting & corresponding VREF has been correcly 'downselected' in the APPROACH REF Page & that it is correctly displayed at the bottom of the SPD Tape on the PFDs in GREEN. Ensure that you have chosen an appropriate level of AUTOBRAKE & that it also has been selected on the centre pedestal & that the minima you have chosen (whether BARO or RADIO - not both) is correctly displayed on the PFDs.


Landing Flap Selection


Flap 25 - Some RL B744 operators use F25 as the normal landing flap selection unless the criteria for Flap 30 are present (see Flap 30 below). With Flap 25 set the final approach speed is increased although slightly lower thrust settings are required to maintain the approach profile. Flap 25 is therefore slightly more ecconomical & reduces wear & tear on the engines, it also reduces the stress on the flap beam assemblies & this also helps to reduce maintenance costs over the life of an aircraft. Flap 25, AUTOBRAKE 2 or 3 & Idle Reverse is a very effective combination in slowing the aircraft after touchdown under most conditions. Flap 25 is also an effective way of combatting gusty windy conditions as the higher approach speeds enable better penetration of the wind gusts & shears that occur. With practice Flap 25 will feel more 'slippery' than Flap 30 & it does require slightly more nose up pitch in the flare - we are talking only a degree or two but with practice it will become noticeable.


There are however plenty of occasions to use choose Flap 30 ....


Flap 30 - Most RL operators (including those that prefer Flap 25 landings as the norm) insist on Flap 30 for all AUTOLANDS. With F30 set the aircraft flies a degree or two lower in pitch attitude & this will improve the visual segment of the approach. With Flap 30 set the final approach speed is decreased although slightly higher thrust settings are required to maintain the approach profile as the final increment of Flap does create additional drag. Flap 30 is also normally used on short RWYs, especially if they are wet &/or contaminated with snow or slush.


A note on landing weight - ensure that the aircraft ZFW has been correctly set using the PMDG Load Manager & that the fuel has likewise been correctly loaded using the utility within the PMDG sub menu native to the FS Menu Bar. The B744 has an enormous weight range - an empty freighter carrying 10t of fuel at touchdown will weigh as little as 175t & with a full load of freight & approx 14t of fuel the freighter could weigh up to 302t on landing ... at each end of the weight range - whether empty or full the aircraft needs to be flown carefully & accurately as it is very near the edges of the performance envelope.


Reverse Thrust Selection


Most airlines have three types of reverse thrust selections for the B744:


Idle Reverse - The normal seting when RWY and/or conditions are not limiting


Partial Reverse - Used when it is appropriate to reduce the energey absorbtion by the brakes - e.g 'Hot and High ARPTs'


Full Reverse - Used when limiting conditions exist (Wet RWYs & RWYs contaminated with snow, slush or ice, very windy conditions....right down to 70 - 60kts or when a safe stop is assured)




If you have completed everything at the right time & in right sequence you should be approaching the 1000ft RA call with the Landing Checklist complete - the aircraft fully configured for the landing, gear down & locked, landing flap set, speedbrake armed, at the target speed with the engines spooled up to maintain the target speed with the missed aproach altitude set in the MCP ALT window. If you are conducting an ILS approach the ILS glidepath & localiser indications should be centred on the PFD.


These are the criteria that create a 'Stabilised Approach' - a 'Stabilised Approach' is the only way to achieve a succesful landing.


Nobody in the commercial flying world is taught to 'do greasers'...'greasers' eat up a huge amount of RWY. A positive or firm touchdown in the TDZ gets the B744 into the stopping programme in the shortest distance possible...if holding the nose off was proven to be of benefit then Boeing would have had a comment as such in the FCOM.


Remember that IRL most 744 landings are conducted on busy RWYs with landing traffic in trail less than 90 seconds behind the landing aircraft so it is important to get the aircraft onto the RWY inside the TDZ & into the stopping programme quickly & accurately.


The landing manoeuvure is a visual manoeuvure.


The TARGET approach SPEED should be VREF+5, VREF+10 or VREF+15 dependent on weather conditions & exceptionally VREF+20 should be used if windshear conditions exist. The MCP SPEED BUG should be set to the TARGET SPEED.


So in normal conditions an MCP SPEED BUG set to VREF+5 kts should suffice. DO NOT make large or abrupt power changes as this will destabilise the approach.


If the speed on a limiting RWY is in excess of VREF+15kts over the threshold (White Stripes) then a GO-AROUND should be immediately initiated.


Maintain the correct approach path using the ILS information (if available) and note that any external visual aids other than the PAPI should be ignored below 300ft AAL.


DO NOT allow the SPD to decrease below VREF+5 kts as the drag induced at this stage will require a large increase in power, this will destabilise the approach.


The aircraft should be aligned with the RWY extended centreline by no later than 300ft AAL, if this is not possible a GO-AROUND should be immediately intitiated.


Only minor lateral corrections should be carried out below this height.




At 100ft RA the nose of the aircraft should be very near the threshold (White Stripes), if the threshold has been passed beneath the nose & out of sight to the pilot then the aircraft is high.


RA Call - "FIFTY!"


At 50ft RA the aircraft should be over the threshold, if the threshold is still in sight then the aircraft is low and a GO-AROUND should be immediately initiated.


RA Call - "FORTY!"


When the threshold passes under the aircraft nose and is out of sight the visual sighting point should be switched to the far end of the runway whilst maintaing a constant descent rate and airspeed. This will assist in maintaining a constant PITCH ATTITUDE during the flare...this is the key to a smooth touchdown. Passing 40ft RA you should be poised ready to make a number of gentle control inputs...the Radio Altimeter will be the cue if operational.


RA Call - "THIRTY!"


Increase the PITCH ATTITUDE by 2 degrees as 30ft RA is passed, this will slow the rate of descent - (That's an increase of 2 degrees on the current pitch attitude, not an increase to 5 degrees pitch or whatever.)


Slowly move the Thrust Levers back to the Idle Stop aiming to have them at the Idle Stop at touchdown adjusting pitch to maintain the desired descent rate.


RA Call - "TWENTY!"


Fly the aircraft onto the runway.


On landing, to ensure a touchdown not more than 300m past the threshold the pilots visual aiming point should be about 600m past the threshold.


RA Call - "TEN!"


Do not allow the aircraft to float and watch the pitch attitude...at 11.5 degrees nose up with the Body Gear on the RWY the rear of the fuselage WILL make contact with the runway in a wings level condition.


After touchdown the reversers should be selected to the interlock - i.e 'REV' in yellow is displayed above the engine tapes on the upper EICAS, then the briefed selection should be set.


Track the runway centreline with the rudder pedals and ensure the SPEED BRAKE has deployed automatically...if not manually deploy it, monitor the AUTOBRAKE performance & be ready to apply manual braking if necessary.


DO NOT attempt to hold the nosewheel off the runway as this will affect the braking capability of the aircraft...FLY the nosewheel on to the runway gently but without delay.


In cross-wind conditions maintain the into-wind aileron input during the deceleration.


Passing through 80kts start to gradually reduce the level of REV Thrust to Idle REV.


When you are assured of making your planned RWY exit lightly press on the toe brakes to disarm the Autobrake & continue manual braking down to a safe taxi speed, stow the Reversers passing 20kts.


FLY the aircraft onto the runway & practice with both Flap 25 & Flap 30 is the key!


Steve Bell


"Wise men talk because they have something to say.  Fools talk because they have to say something." - Plato (latterly attributed to Saul Bellow)


The most useful tool on the AVSIM Fora ... 'Mark forum as read'

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Dear nexuz28,


Please be mindful of what Kyle told you about YouTube videos! Just out of curiosity I watched a few of the videos suggested by pete_auau and I must say that there are a lot of bad and missing things there. I appreciate the effort that some people put in trying to create these videos but more often than not they do more harm than help. Take this as a kind advice coming from a RW pilot and a person who has gone through a lot of airline CBTs and original Boeing manuals.


The best source of information are the original manuals and tutotials, and if videos are what help you better, no videos are more complete and accurate than those from Angle of Attack - thank you again Chris for the great job you did with the 747-400 training DVDs!




Ionut G. Micu


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G-CIVA gives good advice :drinks: . Follow it. No "if's" or "buts". And practice, practice, practice. There is a lot of airplane to control and forget about the default aircraft. You will need to re-learn everything you thought you knew when flying the old lady as it should be done.

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Tony K.

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My problem is that I can't exactly program the FMC ? Since it's too complicated. I'm not able to use autopilot like in the default planes. Can someone provide me a good youtube tutorial for me ? Thanks !


Hi Nexus,


I knew I sent this in a another post.


To explain shortly how to use the FMC is rather difficult, but download here a tutorial:


It explains every step with a text and a picture. It takes an hour of your time, but after that you understand and can use every FMC easily, because you know what and why you are doing things.

It helped me a lot to understand.




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