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paulh1

FSX ATC

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As we all know FSX ATC is very basic and out dated.

 

However early arrival information is helpful in determining runway selection for landing.

 

FSX ATC will not give you access to tower or ATIS until you are very close ie  20-30 miles at best.

 

I believe that when you can select your airport from the ATC (nearest airport menu) you probably cannot contact ATIS or Tower by radio frequency.

 

Why FSX stops radio contact up until this final position I have no idea.

 

Does anyone know how I can contact atis or tower at an earlier time (say 60 miles out) or obtain rwy info so that earlier preparation and FMC set up is possible.

 

Regards  Paul

 

 

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Paul,

 

Do you use active sky? If so, you can load a flight plan and then tune 122.02 and gain ATIS for the arrival airport.

 

Joe

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Paul,

 

Do you use active sky? If so, you can load a flight plan and then tune 122.02 and gain ATIS for the arrival airport.

 

Joe

This isn't always helpful because FSX will often give a wrong runway despite the winds. Especially when the airport has multiple crossing runways. It's not always straight forward. It is nice to have the weather info though. Personally I use an app that gives the real world weather which is the same as what ASN gives you. And aside from active sky, FSX usually gives default ATIS about 60 miles out, so I'm unsure why you aren't getting it sooner. I think real world is sometimes more like 90 miles. Still makes planning arrivals tough since knowing the active runway determines how soon to start the descent.

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This isn't always helpful because FSX will often give a wrong runway despite the winds.

 

I can only speak from my experience, which is I find the method I use to work 99% of the time. But then I also have Topcat and PFPX which also gives me an idea on the arrival, as well as real world flying experience.

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FSX doesn't stop you contacting ATIS before you are close to the destination. If you check the airport chart you should be able to see the ATIS frequency. You can always manually tune it. The only problem comes if the FSX ATIS frequency is not current, which is more than a possibility. I don't tune ATIS and use ASN current conditions to get the weather conditions. Any weather program should be able to give that information in some form or other..

 

As for having to wait until the nearest airport list shows your destination, if you file an IFR flight you will be handed over to the destination airport well before that. If the runway FSX ATC assigns isn't appropriate then just ignore it and land where you feel is best.

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I use the ASN Flight Watch feature too. If you load a flightplan into ASN you can also get the forecast weather info for the destination at any time during the flight based on TAFs (Terminal Area Forecasts) .  TAFs are important because they will tell you what the winds are forecast to be at the time of your arrival unlike METARs which are only a current snapshot. In some cases (like a frontal passage) the wind can vary up to 180 degrees between METARs so knowing the forecast can also help your runway planning.  

 

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If FSX ATC is confused about the runways it might not have received the proper information at the right time when the flight starts, check the weather engine documentation. Or maybe something to do with the airport maybe the AI package. Overall, I'd say FSX ATC is 99% ultra precise about the runways in use.

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Another consideration is that the sim works with a radius of around 70 miles about the user aircraft, called the reality bubble. Anything outside that may not be considered. Depending on the weather engine type, the weather "effect" can extend up to 300 Nm if using the metar injection. Weather engines using the legacy weather themes engine may not have that range and ATC not updated. Then come into range with slightly later weather. Very small changes can alter the ATC runway selection.

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Very small changes can alter the ATC runway selection.
Like 2 degrees. Consider a runway heading of 360/180 degrees. If the wind is 276/8, FSX uses 36. If the wind is 274/8, FSX uses 18. No airport is going to changes runways like FSX does. Like Kevin Hall wrote "If the runway FSX ATC assigns isn't appropriate then just ignore it and land where you feel is best."

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I can only speak from my experience, which is I find the method I use to work 99% of the time. But then I also have Topcat and PFPX which also gives me an idea on the arrival, as well as real world flying experience.

 

 

I'd agree, however, a while back I did a flight to KEWR and winds favored runways 4 the whole time.  Then when I got to the airport I find out that 22 is in use.  Kinda annoying.  This was with ASN and forced winds checked

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Like 2 degrees.

Like 1 degree and 1NM Gust or 1NM winds, 1m in location of runway with respect to your ramp taxi distance, and so on. But these are for when initialising the ATC/AI and it won't swap runways around for little changes after that and with planes landing taking off. Must be some other issue...

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Wen you have AI working at fairly high rates, then pretty important to work out the active runway, otherwise, landing into departing traffic a bit disconcerting. I use ASN ATIS, which most times selects the active runway.

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If you file an IFR flightplan ATC will give you your initial clearance and expected landing runway (With the option to request another) about 70nm out.

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If you file an IFR flightplan ATC will give you your initial clearance and expected landing runway (With the option to request another) about 70nm out.

 

Yeah, except ATC won't let you descend on time.  Even requests for early descent are delayed, and selecting a transition waypoint (IAF), won't let you descend properly, unless you're ok heading 30 miles downwind.

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Yeah, except ATC won't let you descend on time. Even requests for early descent are delayed, and selecting a transition waypoint (IAF), won't let you descend properly, unless you're ok heading 30 miles downwind.

I always ignore FSX ATC during descent. I just acknowledge it. Once you start the approach it usually comes to its senses and gives you landing clearance.

 

It's worst of all for a go-around. You get vectors all over the place. Sometimes away from the airport and then it forgets you need to land. Just ignore it, vector yourself back to approach.

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I always ignore FSX ATC during descent. I just acknowledge it. Once you start the approach it usually comes to its senses and gives you landing clearance.

 

It's worst of all for a go-around. You get vectors all over the place. Sometimes away from the airport and then it forgets you need to land. Just ignore it, vector yourself back to approach.

 

Sounds like something interrupting the flow of it, maybe you get some kind of AI traffic foul up. Set up some AI to specifically cause a go around and it'll always come back and land eventually. Perhaps it needs more patience because it will vector you away, might be toward the north pole but you don't actually go all the way there, you'll be heading back to the airport eventually. Turn down AI or try other airports. Airports that have a single taxi on/off the runway can get blocked and then the ATC may take a while vectoring you around.

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I always ignore FSX ATC during descent. I just acknowledge it. Once you start the approach it usually comes to its senses and gives you landing clearance.

 

It's worst of all for a go-around. You get vectors all over the place. Sometimes away from the airport and then it forgets you need to land. Just ignore it, vector yourself back to approach.

 

 

I wish there was a way to kill the nagging from ATC.  Doesn't ATC cancel your IFR PF if you don't stay at the altitude they want you at?  I guess you can keep repeating the instruction, but it's ridiculous to have to go through all that.  I'm wondering if using EditVoicePack to remove those nagging messages would work? lol. 

 

I try not to go around, but yeah, it's dumb.  Especially since the approaches have the GA procedure in them.  You can pick the missed approach "published" but I've never done it.  If I go around I usually just enter a pattern.  Truth be told, the IFR handling is so bad that I almost always fly using a flight following only.  Then pick up ATIS on COM 2 and plan based on weather.  Most of my flights end up being VMC conditions, so it makes little difference.

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I've not been troubled with late descents, not sure what's happening there, unless going past the airport and turning back due to a runway direction, sometimes seems a long way but it's possibly being impatient. There's a lot of places the ATC can be improved, but it's useful the way it is.

 

 

I wish there was a way to kill the nagging from ATC.

You don't actually have to remain in contact along the way you can pick it up later as you desire.

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I've not been troubled with late descents, not sure what's happening there, unless going past the airport and turning back due to a runway direction, sometimes seems a long way but it's possibly being impatient. There's a lot of places the ATC can be improved, but it's useful the way it is.

 

 

 

You don't actually have to remain in contact along the way you can pick it up later as you desire.

 

 

Yeah, I know you can stop switching frequencies but it kinda seems pointless.  I can't see how you haven't had late descents.  They're always way off.  You can't even slow down the NGX if you follow ATC's descent instruction.  As it is, FMC calculated TOD is often kinda late for slowing, so idk.  Unless you are ok with being placed 20 miles past the centerline, then it's highly unrealistic. 

 

I think it depends on how you are flying.  If I'm approaching abeam the airport, using KPHX as an example, I might be on the BUNTR TWO arrival.  FSX has no clue about a STAR.  So, lets say my FSX FP contains all waypoints for this STAR.  Around the PAYSO fix, ATC will expect me to start turning all over the place.  Now, you can go into the ATC menu and choose an IAF for a specific approach.  Default FSX contains the CERUN IAF for ILS runway 26.  What that does is bypass all the waypoints beyond PAYSO and requires you fly direct to CERUN.  Now the distance is good, 81 NM or so.  However, 75% of the time ATC will not have allowed you to descend from say FL300 down to glideslope capture altitude.  

 

It's rarely worked right, FS9, FSX, and prior.  Regardless of the aircraft.  Even something that slows easy like the Q400 or RA Duke.  I've been 2,000 to 4,000 feet too high more times that I can count.  Nothing like being 4,000 feet too high and speeding along at 260 knots because you can't slow down and descent at 2500 fpm, regardless of speedbrake deployment. 

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Weird, I was using the stock 747 recently in FSX for a few tests and the descents were perfect.

 

Need to be back in contact early enough prior to descent, and ATC may start vectoring you off your GPS plan. It tries to bring you in at 90, 60, 30 degrees, so the least turn last saves the stock AP from latency, and it's got to descend you in to the area of that 90 degree approach.

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Well with every add on I've used it's a mess.  As far back as I can remember.  I don't use default planes, and those I will use are basic GA.  I started out essentially on the Dreamfleet 737 and Level-D 767, so not much of a default jet user. 

 

In something like a PMDG or similar, it's impossible to get down in time without busting speed using default ATC.  I want to be at 240-250 below 10,000. 

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It's not a difficult calculation. But sounds like you expect too much from ATC. You say it doesn't handle SIDs and STARs so it would not be expected to refer to them. It's a fairly useful tool, misunderstood, but it's not going to keep anyone entertained.

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You have to file a .PLN with the cruise alt stated. ATC works off the navigation from the scenery files won't understand AIRACs and the plan doesn't want to be too far off what would be expected once it get's in range of the destination.

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I suspect FSX ATC was designed to give you something to do as much as for realism. Hence all the redundant switching from one controller to another in the same ATC center, levelling off during descent, extended approach and G/A vectoring, etc.

 

 

I wish there was a way to kill the nagging from ATC. Doesn't ATC cancel your IFR PF if you don't stay at the altitude they want you at? I guess you can keep repeating the instruction, but it's ridiculous to have to go through all that. I'm wondering if using EditVoicePack to remove those nagging messages would work? lol.

 

It won't cancel IFR as long as you acknowledge the directions. It might keep telling you to climb up to the last altitude but once you get near the approach path it usually switches to giving you clearance to approach and land. If it doesn't I land anyway.

 

 

Sounds like something interrupting the flow of it, maybe you get some kind of AI traffic foul up. Set up some AI to specifically cause a go around and it'll always come back and land eventually. Perhaps it needs more patience because it will vector you away, might be toward the north pole but you don't actually go all the way there, you'll be heading back to the airport eventually. Turn down AI or try other airports. Airports that have a single taxi on/off the runway can get blocked and then the ATC may take a while vectoring you around.

 

I don't think it was an AI problem. It vectored me away, out of the airport approach area then just stopped giving me instructions. I followed it the heading to see what it would do and I never heard another thing out of it. I'm used to it vectoring you miles away then turning you round but this was way further out. So I routinely ignore it on go-around now. Life's too short for pointless and unrealistic vectors.

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Can't think why you are dumped, maybe the sim was out of resources, try with less or no AI traffic.

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