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Paul12

For what should I use Topcat ?

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I only use PMG-737 and was surprised to hear the following comment from a Topcat member:

 

NOTE: PMDG do NOT recommend the use of Topcat for loading purposes on the NGX and 777, they use there own system.

 

Do you agree with this claim and if so,why do I ned Topcat ? I use PFPX to create my flightplans..

 

I am anxious to hear your comments.

 

Hubert Werni

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With 737NGX I use TOPCAT only for takeoffs. I get Derates, Assumed Temperature and Flap Settings. I don't use it for landings or any weights that might be transferred to the 737NGX.

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I've noticed that TOPCAT always gives me flaps 1 for takeoff not 5? I imagine they go off gross weight and runway length? but is this normal as i've seen 


RW pilots always use F5 on videos etc


suppose topcat is right i just found this -

 

 

F5 gets you airborne quicker, but with a worse climb angle. If you look at the Take-Off Performance tables for runways, very often the runway is Obstacle Clearance limited, and it is this that limits take-off weight. So the F5 take-off is more limited. With F1, the take-off run is slightly longer, but once airborne, the climb is steeper, so the take-off weight is usually much higher. It can make quite a difference. The improved climb table gives you higher weight, and I think more reduced power take-off saving engine wear.

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Use PFPX or topcoat to generate the loads. But don't use the feature that sends that to the sim. Instead look at the weights and balances page and see how topcat thinks the passenger and bags should be dispatched. You can then use the CDU to load the plane using topcat numbers as a guide.

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I've noticed that TOPCAT always gives me flaps 1 for takeoff not 5? I imagine they go off gross weight and runway length? but is this normal as i've seen 

 

A typical runway most anywhere where 737 flies is plenty long enough for the airplane. General idea is to use the smallest flap angle that gets you out, usually that is F1 or F5. Some airlines do not permit F1 departure for different reasons, these will almost always see F5.

 

Mentioning that - flaps do go off gross weight and runway length, except that there is usually too much length to see high flap settings.

Look around for an airport with shortish runway, something like maybe 2000m/6000ft region. If you run calculations there, you might see F10, F15 even F25 on some occasions. 

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Next time someone says "always" when discussing real world operations in an aviation forum, they should be considered for a ban... *

 

No, not always.

Never always.

 

There wouldn't be different pages in the performance pages for different flaps settings if it were "always."

 

*This sentence is intentionally hyperbolic to joke about a pretty serious situation.  Misinformation is rampant in sim forums, and it only serves to paint an improper picture of aviation.  Be careful how you relay "real world" information in forums where the sim crowd congregates.  After all, we've all seen the 250/10 rule misunderstanding, and if anyone's been on VATSIM, we've all heard the "...request clearance, as filed" (this last one, thanks to Microsoft).

 

 

 


surprised to hear the following comment from a Topcat member:

As far as the use of TOPCAT, it's in the name:

TakeOff Performance CAlculation Tool

 

Nowhere in that name does it say load manager, flight planner, or otherwise, so I'm not sure why you were surprised to see what you saw...

 

The tool calculates takeoff and landing performance.  The part that relates to aircraft loading is so that the program can determine CG for trim values, and weight for takeoff performance.  Since it does that, the developer offered to push the values to the plane via .CFG updates or FSUIPC.  It's just an extra feature, useful in certain cases (PMDG aircraft not being one of them).

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RW pilots always use F5 on videos etc

 

The majority of our takeoffs are done with flaps 1. 

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I made  many successful flights with TopCat, Takeoff and Landing performance were on the numbers.

Vapp speed stabilize  your approach and transit you to  Vref+5 landing speed.

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ok thats cool i had vref 149 knots earlier with vapp speed at 161 as i was just over the threshold at 30 feet i managed to have my speed about 155 knots which is not bad for a rookie lol so i managed to bleed off 6 knots woohoo

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That is good...

Next flight, give a time to your self stabilize the vaap. Before you start to descent from FAF (Final App Fix) you should already established  VREF+5 speed. If you are experiencing wind gust. Take half value of wind gust and add on to  your VREF speed .

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Topcat is good for Vapp as long as you remember it works off of pre-departure estimate - unless you feed it with new numbers.

 

Handy for figuring out if flying into a small airport in bad weather is a good idea, or if you should divert to that island airport with a heavy plane, or carry on 20 minutes further to a bigger place.

Also handy for failures.

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who here uses TOPCAT vapp speed? is it accurate or acceptable to use?

 

The only time you would need to look up a vApp speed would be if both of your FMCs had failed in flight.  Use the FMC computed approach speeds.

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