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downscc

Any Over The Hump Adventurers?

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I just finished an article in Smithsonian's Air and Space magazine about a new memorial and park the Chinese and others have created in memory of the AAF and CNAC. The story included the restoration of a C-47 and it's flight over the route Dinjan-Kunming.  This got my imagination flowing and a spark of an idea:  Why not try this in the PMDG DC6?

I'm looking for the route and about all I have so far is something in Wikipedia from the Army's history books:

The official history of the Army Air Forces states:

The Brahmaputra valley floor lies 90 feet (27 m) above sea level at Chabua. From this level the mountain wall surrounding the valley rises quickly to 10,000 feet (3,000 m) and higher. Flying eastward out of the valley, the pilot first topped the Patkai Range, then passed over the upper Chindwin River valley, bounded on the east by a 14,000-foot (4,300 m) ridge, the Kumon Mountains. He then crossed a series of 14,000–16,000-foot (4,300–4,900m) ridges separated by the valleys of the West Irrawaddy, East Irrawaddy, Salween, and Mekong Rivers. The main "Hump", which gave its name to the whole awesome mountainous mass and to the air route which crossed it, was the Santsung Range, often 15,000 feet (4,600 m) high, between the Salween and Mekong Rivers. East of the Mekong the terrain became decidedly less rugged, and the elevations more moderate as one approached the Kunming airfield, itself 6,200 feet (1,900 m) above sea level.

Unfavorable weather conditions along the route were a major contributing factor to its difficulty:

The Assam-Kunming route...(was situated)...in the middle of...three Eurasian air masses that were stirred and conflated by the presence of the Himalayas themselves. Moist warm air from the Indian Ocean to the south produced high pressure that swept north, while cold dry air from Siberia moved south. These lows and highs were extreme, producing violent winds...and when those winds hit the immovable mass that was the world's tallest mountain range, they shot upward at startling speeds until they cooled and then rushed downward in terrifying drafts that hurled airplanes...earthward at stupefying rates of descent...Turbulence inside the cloud mass was severe; pilots reported being flipped upside down by gusts, while many others were unable to report anything because they went missing. Hail, sleet, and torrential rains lashed the aircraft. Thunderstorms built suddenly...(into)...a whirling opaque world that not only meant no visibility but also frequently meant icing. The peaks of the Hump were waiting; the pilots called them "cumulo-granite"...

The point of view of a veteran crewman who flew the Hump was described in a feature story for a local newspaper years after:

... Let there be no question about it! Flying the Hump was risky business. The air route led first over the Himalayan foothills and finally to the mountains, between north Burma and west China, airspace where turbulence and abominable weather was the norm. Judge for yourself: one of the peaks they flew over translated into English as "Elephant Head Gouge Mountain," because "when elephants use a game trail on its side, at one place they have to turn such a sharp corner that their tusks scrape grooves into the rock." .

Anybody plotted this route yet have a flight plan?  If not, time to spend some time with SkyVector and try to recreate this.... sounds like fun.

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Seems to me that using a DC-6 is kind of cheating.  If you want to realistic  and challenging, you need to use a C-46 or a C-47 or maybe even the cargo version of the B-24.  That should be even more fun. 

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18 hours ago, Chuck Nance said:

Seems to me that using a DC-6 is kind of cheating.  If you want to realistic  and challenging, you need to use a C-46 or a C-47 or maybe even the cargo version of the B-24.  That should be even more fun. 

I don't have a C-47, agree.... if I had one I probably would have already done this.  A friend pointed me to a freeware one but I stay away from low quality... not saying the free one is low quality but it is free.

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Dan,

My fixed wing basic IP in T-41s flew the hump in C-47s.  He had lots of stories and it did not sound like he was having a whole lot of fun. :smile:

CG was always a concern in the C-47.

blaustern

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18 hours ago, downscc said:

I don't have a C-47, agree.... if I had one I probably would have already done this.  A friend pointed me to a freeware one but I stay away from low quality... not saying the free one is low quality but it is free.

 

The free C47 if it is the free one I think it is is

as good as if not better than the PMDG DC6.

 

Why? 'cos it too is a labour of love but this one is absolutely free.

 

JP.

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On 10/6/2017 at 0:44 PM, downscc said:

I don't have a C-47, agree.... if I had one I probably would have already done this.  A friend pointed me to a freeware one but I stay away from low quality... not saying the free one is low quality but it is free.

Just chiming in to register the strongest possible endorsement for the free C-47 (v3) by Manfred Jahn and team.  One of the best aircraft - payware included - ever developed for any flightsim.  Flight dynamics are by a fellow goes by the name of Alexander Metzger, which should tell you something about its overall quality.  If you miss out, then you really miss out.  Try it!  

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On ‎10‎/‎7‎/‎2017 at 7:51 AM, JP_Visser said:

 

The free C47 if it is the free one I think it is is

as good as if not better than the PMDG DC6.

 

Why? 'cos it too is a labour of love but this one is absolutely free.

 

JP.

I agree 100% with you. I suppose you're one of the authors of that work of art (and love). So I'd like to say a huge THANK YOU! The DC-3 is extremely realistic, and it helped me A LOT to fly the real DC-3 last year. The flight model is very good, and I was surprised to verify that if flies very close to the real one. Besides that, my DC-3 instructor was amazed by how I felt "at home" in the DC-3 cockpit. Thanks to the realistic rendition of the Virtual Cockpit. 

 

Payware is not a guarantee that it will be better than freeware In fact, there are lots of payware whose quality level is way below most freeware... Going back to the topic. If you want a plane to cross "The Hump" the way it was done 75 years ago. There are four options. 

Jan Visser's C-47 - Arguably the best DC-3 ever made for flight simulators. Hands down the best choice. Ah! And it's FREE

Just Flight/Aeroplane Heaven Curtiss C-46 Commando - Released some weeks ago. Very nice visual model. Flight model is utterly flawed. Lots of bugs and after nearly 2 months, the service pack broke more items than it fixed. 

Curtiss C-46 Commando freeware package by Libardo Guzman, Greg Pepper, and Tom Gibson. It was developed for FS2004 but may work in FSX

Just Flight/Aeroplane Heaven DC-3 - Payware , but with a quality level that is below even the most amateur freeware. Below standards. 

 

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On ‎10‎/‎7‎/‎2017 at 5:51 AM, JP_Visser said:

Why? 'cos it too is a labour of love but this one is absolutely free.

Those are the best kind especially when a very talented developer is involved.  :smile:

Some of the best flight sim models came out of Project Open Sky back in the day.

blaustern

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1 hour ago, PMSoares said:

The flight model is very good, and I was surprised to verify that if flies very close to the real one.

I finally manged to try it. I'm using the v3.14 Beta with the latest fixes by the team.

Since you now have real DC-3/C-47 time, I noticed the aircraft felt very sensitive to inputs in all axis.. Is that the case in the real aircraft? It really is a beauty Jan! I will love it when you get the Sperry working (who am I kidding, I love it already).

The best part? It has an auto-mixture system similar to the DC-6, but I can still control it with the mixture lever on my throttle quadrant. :-)

 

Robert Toten

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The feeling of sensitivity on controls is very much dependent on hardware and settings. Fortunately I had the chance to fly a real one a bit and I have recorded roll rates depending on yoke turn angles. So at least with a good hardware yoke you get realistic response in the sim. 

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On 16-10-2017 at 0:17 AM, PMSoares said:

I agree 100% with you. I suppose you're one of the authors of that work of art (and love). So I'd like to say a huge THANK YOU! The DC-3 is extremely realistic, and it helped me A LOT to fly the real DC-3 last year. The flight model is very good, and I was surprised to verify that if flies very close to the real one. Besides that, my DC-3 instructor was amazed by how I felt "at home" in the DC-3 cockpit. Thanks to the realistic rendition of the Virtual Cockpit. 

 

Payware is not a guarantee that it will be better than freeware In fact, there are lots of payware whose quality level is way below most freeware... Going back to the topic. If you want a plane to cross "The Hump" the way it was done 75 years ago. There are four options. 

Jan Visser's C-47 - Arguably the best DC-3 ever made for flight simulators. Hands down the best choice. Ah! And it's FREE

Just Flight/Aeroplane Heaven Curtiss C-46 Commando - Released some weeks ago. Very nice visual model. Flight model is utterly flawed. Lots of bugs and after nearly 2 months, the service pack broke more items than it fixed. 

Curtiss C-46 Commando freeware package by Libardo Guzman, Greg Pepper, and Tom Gibson. It was developed for FS2004 but may work in FSX

Just Flight/Aeroplane Heaven DC-3 - Payware , but with a quality level that is below even the most amateur freeware. Below standards. 

 

Just to be clear, I have absolutely no hand in anything relating to the Jahn/Visser DC3,  I am in awe of people capable

of giving us simnuts an airplane that awesome, which is why I felt obliged to comment.

I echo your sentiments, though, while I love the DC6 I will always love th C47/DC3 as well and that is their accomplishment.

 

JP.

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On ‎10‎/‎15‎/‎2017 at 10:17 PM, randomTOTEN said:

Since you now have real DC-3/C-47 time, I noticed the aircraft felt very sensitive to inputs in all axis.. Is that the case in the real aircraft? 

Hello Robert. It's quite hard to "translate" the "feel" of the flight controls of a real aircraft to their flight simulator versions. I use a custom-built control column, which pivots in the pitch axis at the base, just like most airliners and the DC-3. This makes the pitch control way more precise (and less sensitive, because large yoke displacements equals to small potentiometer movements in the pitch axis) than the typical Saitek or CH yoke. The real DC-3 is very stable in all axis, but at the same time you can change it's pitch with very small movements in either the control column or trim wheel. Talking about roll sensitivity. The real plane has some kind of  "null zone" in roll. For very small command in the yoke, you barely feel a movement, but once the yoke is further deflected, the plane is responsive in roll. Of course, being a direct-cable flight control system, you will feel that increased forces at the controls are necessary at higher speeds, and a given wheel displacement will result in a higher roll rate as your speed increases, but since the required forces are higher, the overall "feel" of the plane is very natural. Obviously this can't be reproduced in our control devices, so it may be felt that the aircraft is too much sensitive at cruise speeds. But in general I found the DC-3 to be a good representation of its real-world counterpart. 

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