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First Career Jetliner

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Six months ago I endeavored to expand my flightsimming from nearly 15 years of piston AC to turboprops and jets. After those six months I am settling into routine flights with the Majestic Q400. It did not go nearly as smoothly as I had envisioned, but I’m starting to reach a good comfort level with originating and flying regional hops for the VA I joined. I tend to stick with an AC for a long period of time to really learn it. I have logged nearly 2000 hours with DC3 Airways. Once I reach that milestone, I am going to focus more on regular routine daily flights with the Q400, most notably learning the HUD and advance navigation. I’ll also crack open the manual and spend some time in the manual of the jetliner I need to choose.

Most of my Q400 hours are on Vatsim as I’m trying to learn proper procedure and ATC. I just completed the Vatstar P1 training and will proceed through P4. Always learning. My intent was to concentrate my flying on Vatsim through what I believe to be a great VA. Now I’m not so sure I want to go the Vatsim route totally. I have been following with interest the various threads the past few months discussing ATC programs and AI traffic programs. Not ready to make the plunge yet, but I think it’s getting closer.

Anyway… that was some background for the real reason I’m posting this. I’m trying to decide which jetliner to begin with, the Leonardo Maddog or the PMDG 737NGX. I have both. When I bought the 737 I also purchased Mike Ray’s books which I highly regard. I have watched countless hours of YouTube vids on both AC. Either will be a challenge, but that’s the whole point. This is for the long haul.

I’m going to buy a new 9th gen pc this next year along with a new yoke and throttle. Just installed my Crosswinds (nice!). I have 6 Go-Flight modules and am considering buying an EFIS and MPC over the next few months to go with them. I also just bought the X-Plane 11 DVD set. Looking over the Pollypot site to configure my Go-Flight gear I came to the realization that X-Plane was the way to go if I wanted to slowly learn Linda and LUA or even utilize some of the user contributed profile files. I have some programming experience, enough to be dangerous, but learning them will keep me off the streets and out of the pool halls.

Anyone venture an informed opinion on which to take up first? I like the idea of moving with history from the DC3 to the DC9 and then taking on the glass with the PMDG. I just want to make sure I’m not biting off more than I can chew. I’m hopeful the Maddog will give me a solid foundation before moving into Mr. Boeing’s world and eventually the Airbus series too. No sense being closed minded about it. Airbus makes some fine AC from what I can see.

Any informed thoughts and opinions from the commercial jetliner veterans out there? If you were to do it again, what decision would YOU make, and why? Support? Community? Other factors?

Retirement is drawing close. Flying heavy metal and working on my short game is beginning to become front and center. Hope to be able to spend more time learning and contributing to this FINE community.




Edited by Radial9
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HI Bob,

Well both the MadDog and the NG are top draw addon aircraft.

I would suggest you focus on the NG. Why? It doesn't matter where you want to fly IRL the NG is there. I only fly what you see in my sig and after 8 years of flying the NG, it's still one of the most popular aircraft we have. Streamers still fly it all the time. It's a true all time classic.

Because am from the UK I joined Ryanair virtual. One of the best things I've done. It can be found here https://vamsys.io/

Join as many as you like and all can be done on VATSIM it's great to have your flight count for something. If not try ProjectFly. You can use that for any flight in anything. https://stratus.projectfly.co.uk/

I did 2 flights today in the NG and still love it. It's a great base to learn a Boeing that can lead to you enjoying the 777 & 747.

Edited by Nyxx

David Murden.  P3D v5  FSL A321 / A320 / A319 : PMDG NGu / 748PMDG NG / 747-/ 777 : QW 787 :  Maddog MD-80 :Q400 :

DCS: A10C Warthog : AV-8B Harrier :  F-14B Tomcat  : F-16C Viper F/A-18C Hornet 

My FSL Walkthrough PDF From GPU to Parked.      My PMDG NGXu Light Mod      My PMDG NG SpotLight Profile/Mod.  

PC 4790k@4.6 : 1070 : 16GB DDR3 RAM : Thrustmaster Warthog HOTAS: Thrustmaster TPR.

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Between the Maddog and the 737NGX... Geez. That's like asking what's your favorite; a Porsche or a Lotus... The answer is whichever one I happen to be driving at the moment! 😄

The -9 is the jetliner equivalent of a sports car. It's quick to accelerate, slow down, and turn. The 737 is gonna feel heavier - nothing near as heavy as a 747, of course, but still more than the -9. 

On the other hand, glass cockpits are really nice, and the flip-down HUD is an especially pleasant toy to have on challenging landings in storms. 

Were I in your shoes, I'd learn a little about each, fly them both "around the pattern" a couple of times, and see which one made me want to spend more time with it.

I do not think, from what you said, that either of these airplanes would be biting off more than you could chew. You're already familiar with how to run a jet since you're flying a turboprop now. It's the same general principle for regular jets except you don't have to worry about prop controls. The main difference from your perspective will be that everything happens faster, and because of that you need more space than you think for critical phases - - i.e., generally no turning final a mile from the airport. 😉



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