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I'm really embarrassed....a simmer's confession.

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I know I'm going to be made to think I'm a dumb simmer here, but here goes.  I've been simming for over 16 years, and I'm embarrassed to bring this up again.  I wrote about it years ago, and vowed I would correct this inadequacy, but alas, I have not!   What am I embarrassed about?   I only use planes or buy planes that use the default GPS gauge.   I STILL do not know how to use an FMS.  Like you, I probably have thousands of dollars invested in this hobby over the years, and I fly every single day, and I enjoy it immensely.  But when a great plane becomes available with an FMS and no default navigation gauge, I don't get it.

 

What's the best way to get this monkey off my back and learn this navigation necessity.  Stars and Sids seem to have me a little confused, and I try to follow discussion here on AVSIM when some of you talk about it.

 

I vow that this time....perhaps this very weekend coming up, that I will try to start a simple flight with an FMS.  Please give me the best suggestions for getting started.  I am tired of being a simmer veteran and not using this realistic way to navigate.

 

Thanks.

 

Stan

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I know I'm going to be made to think I'm a dumb simmer here, but here goes.  I've been simming for over 16 years, and I'm embarrassed to bring this up again.  I wrote about it years ago, and vowed I would correct this inadequacy, but alas, I have not!   What am I embarrassed about?   I only use planes or buy planes that use the default GPS gauge.   I STILL do not know how to use an FMS.  Like you, I probably have thousands of dollars invested in this hobby over the years, and I fly every single day, and I enjoy it immensely.  But when a great plane becomes available with an FMS and no default navigation gauge, I don't get it.

 

What's the best way to get this monkey off my back and learn this navigation necessity.  Stars and Sids seem to have me a little confused, and I try to follow discussion here on AVSIM when some of you talk about it.

 

I vow that this time....perhaps this very weekend coming up, that I will try to start a simple flight with an FMS.  Please give me the best suggestions for getting started.  I am tired of being a simmer veteran and not using this realistic way to navigate.

 

Thanks.

 

Stan

 

No worries boss. Here are two people that taught me quite a bit:

 

https://www.youtube.com/user/frooglesim

 

https://www.youtube.com/user/BelynzHD

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I know I'm going to be made

 

With some practice you will be up and running first off need to know if you are thinking Boeing or airbus 

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Stan, what kind of airplane?

 

For an airliner, yes, FMS...

 

For a GA aircraft,  GTN750...

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I also would like to know more about the black magic boxes with buttons. 

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Airliners and BizJets.   Thanks for the suggestions.  You can bet I will follow up on those ideas.  Want to know Airbus AND Boeing.

 

Stan

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Airliners and BizJets.   Thanks for the suggestions.  You can bet I will follow up on those ideas.  Want to know Airbus AND Boeing.

 

Stan

 

I have cheat sheet screenshots to get you up and running pretty fast if interested for aerosoft airbuses - let me know

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I may never learn to use an FMS.  Used moving map GPS for real life navigation since 1993 (to 2011). I just don't fly airliners.  Never liked flying VOR to VOR, once those moving map GPSs became available.  GPS just works much better for mountain country, where VORs are line of sight.  

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Stan, what kind of airplane?
 
For an airliner, yes, FMS...
 
For a GA aircraft,  GTN750...

 

+2. But move forward to GPS technology even if it is default FSX. Do you use a GPS in your automobile?

I used to use roadmaps. Heck! As a summer and holiday-vacation worker I worked at Hoosier Motor Club, an American Auto Assoc affiliate, and marked routes on road maps and "Trip Tics" for thousands of members. But times have changed and its time to move on............

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Boeing, for me at least is much more intuitive.   I must admit, though, I'm not up to custom waypoints and offsets and things like that, yet.

 

I can use the airbus, but I still have a bit of trouble on descents and approaches.

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For biz jets get (I can't believe I am gonna say this) Carenado Hawker BUT ONLY with the Flight1 GTN750 and Berts mod. Super joy to fly and its intuitive touch control will get you up and running fast.

 

For airliners I say PMDG NGX or 777 (777 it's actually much easier to get rolling and has better FPS).

In 777 you can download flightplans and weather for the FMC (from Simbrief for example) so you just load it up and it's all set up including CG, takeoff speeds, cruise alt, step climb, TOD mark etc. Much easier to deconstruct and learn plus sooooo immersive. Can't praise the PMDG 777 enough.

Watch all 3 parts from Froogle 777 and you will fall in love. He is showing the 777-3 but the base 777-2 has all the same features minus the fps murdering camera.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MhjNac0vfq8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMY3a_zvcWg

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No need to be embarrassed about your preferred way of flying. It's the sim for a reason and it mainly serves an entertaining and relaxing purpose for most of us. Have to applaud to the folks giving tips and links, that's what a community is about. :smile:

 

Have fun flying, Stan. With or without the FMC's help, it will most likely be fun. And if you would ever get bored following the coloured lines, you can always pick an old school airliner and check how VORs and ADF work out.

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With engines running you can have the777  FMC done and and on your way half way accross the world in under 15 mins. Its only the first flight plan that's a bit tough.

 

Do the tutorials but take your time, maybe allow a few days and be persistent

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FMS can look intimidating at first but keep in mind that all they basically do is fly the plane along a list of waypoints just like the gps units. most of the extra complexity is specific to each plane and basically is entering useful data for the computer like making sure it knows your weights, intended cruise altitude, things like that. it's really an interesting challenge to learn but not nearly as complex as it looks at first glance!

 

i would recommend the pmdg ones either 737 or 777 as they have very comprehensive tutorials included, and there are tons of other resources and tutorials, videos etc out there on the web, probably more than any other specific model. 

 

cheers

-andy crosby

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Get the Angle of Attack videos for the PMDG 737NGX and you can learn to fly a 737 realistically. Once you graduate from a 737 you can fly a 777 and 747 with ease because the systems are so similar.

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Perhaps you could try the Aerosoft Airbus, and fly it together with someone else thanks to the shared cockpit working feature

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The logic of the FMS is impeccable - program in everything relevant about the plane - weight etc, plug in everything about the route - start, end, points in-between to include departure and arrival, let it calculate fuel. Load fuel, file flightplan and go.

 

But that's logic, and FMS rarely follows logical or practical processes - it's like having a dumb co-pilot where the PIC has to dumb down her own skills to meet the requirements of the idiot in the second seat with his dayglo jacket on backwards. (see what I did there, Poppet ?).

 

The problem is that no two work alike, so what I suggest is choose one, learn one, and ONLY that one for the purposes of the learning experience. PMDG are probably the best in terms of support - both developer and user - although the MJC Dash-8 400 runs it close. I really wouldn't use Airshoves for the basics of automated flight. That's a whole different level of stupidity.

 

Then choose routes that allow all features to be used, but don't have huge leg lengths or six-hour waits between TOC and TOD. About an hour and a half flying time worked for me, but I was flying in Europe. 

 

The FMC is like the GPS was - a newfangled toy that old skool pilots avoided. However, it's increasingly a tool for saving money and making things safe, so if you want to know that "Disco" doesn't just mean a seventies dance party with flared trousers, take your time to get used to one. Once you do it is usually easy to adapt to the different types.

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How do you know which "waypoints" to put into an FMS program?   Is that a valid question?

 

Stan

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FMS in PMDG's 737 is pretty easy to use.. but it does depend on the model of plane.. i.e I have the Dash8 q400 and whilst it has an FMS it is very different from the 737 one but basics are the same.

 

Waypoints are given to you when you create the flight plan.. the use of the FMS does require an update to navigation to be accurate but you could probably get away with using the simple FSX flight planner to start with.

 

Navigation is actually the easy part to input the more technical aspect is working out fuel/distance/weights and measures etc.

 

you then input the codes (may look something like DEC or GOLUM for the waypoints (on ramps) or UL610 which are the airways (or motorways if you will)

 

The way I imagined it in very basic terms was motorways and of and on ramps...

 

whats my first on ramp to the motorway after I leave the runway.?. the SID to some extent does this, its the route to safely get away from the airport in a controlled manner and access your main route...

 

The STAR is your departure from your main route down to the runway (off ramp if you will)...

 

again very very basic explanation and others will perhaps provide better..

 

if you use Skype and PMDG737 I would be happy to help you out ... just PM me ...

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How do you know which "waypoints" to put into an FMS program?   Is that a valid question?

 

Hi Stan, I posted on a similar subject myself very recently. A guy in your situation also wanted to know the basics. Have a look at my post here - http://forum.avsim.net/topic/459680-gtn-750650/page-11#entry3270046 it's the very basic fundamentals. Hope it helps.

 

All the best,

Neil.

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I went through a similar experience--it was especially hard to understand what the route discontinuities were all about and why the FMC couldn't just figure it out on its own.

 

Aivlasoft EFB helped immensely with this as it allowed me to visualize how the SIDS, STARS and approaches connect to the rest of the flight plan and made the reason for the discontinuities self-evident. Once I had that visual understanding the traditional charts and approach plates made a lot more sense, as did programming the FMC.

 

I, too, would recommend starting with and sticking to the PMDG 737 until it all makes sense.  I think I'd still be trying to figure out the Q400's FMC if I hadn't started with the 737. 

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What great advice from you all!  I promise I will try some of these links to attempt my initiation into the FMS world.  Why it seems so complicated to me is not understandable.  I have 2 Masters degrees from Bucknell University and I'm a business owner.  Yet this FMS thing has been a real "bugaboo" for me for some unknown reason.  It has to be MENTAL!

 

Stan

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Hey Stan - Great topic bud.

 

All suggestions here are top class.

 

I would add to pick up a copy of PFPX (Flight Planning Tool).  It's a great program to assist with building your plans and the export feature is great.  It will simply export completed plans into almost any complex payware aircraft.

 

Just a thought.

 

Enjoy.

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i would recommend the pmdg ones either 737 or 777 as they have very comprehensive tutorials included, and there are tons of other resources and tutorials, videos etc out there on the web, probably more than any other specific model.

 

 

+1 on the above. I knew nothing on how to use an FMC before going through the PMDG 737 tutorial #1. In less than 30 minutes I knew 90%  of what I need to know to get me up and going from t/o to touchdown with the FMC. The other 10% I learned through more advanced youtube videos on the subject. From a very broad perspective the FMC manages routes, altitudes and A/C performance data, all designed to reduce workload and increase operation cost efficiency.

Good to understand a few key concepts ( SIDS, STARS and waypoint's in between) if you haven't already. The PMDG tutorials will give you a solid understanding from which you can build upon and make sense of the whole thing. Kyle from PMDG support has some great supplementary videos on the more advanced level when the time comes. Go for it. MUCH easier than you might think. And I only have a BS degree  in marketing from San Jose State University

 

Have fun.

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