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Hello!  I am primarily a P3D simmer, but I am aware of the superiority of X-Plane when it comes to helicopter simulator.  I am wondering what the best training helicopters are for X-Plane 11.  I am open to both Freeware and Payware.  Also some nice sceneries would be a good addition.

 

Thanks,

Andrew

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I think the Vskylabs Guimbal Cabri G2 here is pretty simple to fly and not complex at all. The flight characteristics seem right. I say seems right because I've never flown a rotowing.

As for scenery, the default is pretty good. See other posts for suggestions for making X-plane 'just right'.

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Posted (edited)

There are two schools of thought here, I think. One says you should train on a small, lightweight helicopter with twitchy handling, because once you learn to cope with that, you can fly anything. This is how most real-world helicopter pilots train (except in the military), although that's mainly for cost reasons. The payware Cabri G2 would be good for this.

The other school of thought is train on something larger and heavier because it will be more inherently stable. I tend to lean this way, because our PC flight controls don't have the motion range or feedback that you get in the real thing (i.e. we need all the help we can get).

The free Bell 429 is a good way to get started in a medium-weight twin that's easy to fly. Like many helicopters in this size, the 429 includes stability augmentation which helps a little, and you can adjust it for more or less help (and realism). Make sure you turn X-Plane's own internal stability slider off for this model. The 429 also includes some advanced features you can try after learning the basics, like force trim release for the cyclic, auto-hover and autopilot modes.

Two other excellent helicopters in the mid-range for weight would be the X-Trident Bell 412 and the Dreamfoil Bell 407 XP11, both payware. My personal view is that the Bell 412 is currently the best-modeled helicopter in X-Plane, I love flying it.

If you're serious about flying helicopters in the sim, you'll need a good joystick, preferably a separate throttle quadrant you can map to the collective, and rudder pedals for the anti-torque tail rotor. It's difficult to master flying helicopters in any sim without pedals.

Edited by Paraffin
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I have not tried helicopters in X-Plane so I cant say. I will say that the helicopter flight model in DCS is way above anything FSX/P3D engine can offer.

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I'd say the Dream Foil Bell 407 is your best choice.  It also supports RXP GTN integration through a freeware mod

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Posted (edited)

By all means and if you want the REAL DEAL !!!! : DreamFoil AS350 B3+

Screen%20%20(7)-24dee7db11.pngScreen%20%20(1)-e5e135ec36.jpgScreen%20%20(1)-419ecf61bb.pngScreen%20%20(8)-07fab32de9.pngScreen%20%20(9)-29455d018e.pngScreen%20%20(22)-9968094d1d.png

 

For me, this modul is just PURE JOY !!!!   It can give you soooo much, for the novice as for the advanced users as well; because you can fly it in two different modes.  First one is the Arcade Mode; and if you are an advanced user or more adventurous, just leave the arcade mode off.

But be careful: without any stabilization (how it works in reality) the " squirrel" (nick name of the AS350) can become a real beast :rolleyes:.

Quote

 

Arcade Mode
Exclusive mode allow beginners to get help while training, this feature will auto correct flight attitude, just center your joystick while flying in this mode and helicopter will automatically fly stabilized. It is not limited to beginners, can be also used in other situations like:

  1. In forward flight as help to keep flying while you change any instrument like radio frequency or GPS.
  2. During hover as PANIC button, to recover from bad situations induced by pilot.
  3.  For people who don't really want to worry so much about flying, just like an arcade mode from videogames, it allow you to takeoff without big corrections from cyclic, and forward speed is achieved by only moving cyclic forward.
  4. the second for adventurous and advanced users

 

And there are some remarkable freeware-additions for this payware bird out there.

For example Swisscreations has done a superb expansion pack (for free), which I can really recommend.  Just have a look here:  Swisscreations AS350B3 Expansion Pack 2.0

This modul really needs a lot of training and practise, it just depends on yourself  But if you start to master the AS350 in advanced mode, you probably will fly every helicopter in the simulated world.

If you want to read more about it's features, you can read - and purchase - it here :  Eurocopter AS350 B3 Plus

Well, it's not low priced tagged.  But in reward you would a get lots and lots of hours of challenging flights.  And if you get bored about it after some time "maybe", then it's your own fault and you are doing something wrong most likely, just my last two cents :wink:

 

 

All the very best,

Konrad.

 

Edited by KBUR
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@KBUR does this work in XP11?  I bought it for XP10 and dont remember it working.

 

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1 hour ago, ryanbatcund said:

@KBUR does this work in XP11?  I bought it for XP10 and dont remember it working.

Hi Ryan!  Yes, it works on my Xplane 11.32 without issues so far.  Even its superb FLIR is working and the Swisscreation Expansion Pack too.

My version is the AS350+ SP 2.1.

The only issue you will have in the beginning is no hearable sound.  But "conex" (developer from DreamFoil creations) thankfully posted a fix for this.  You can read the appropriate thread here:  No engine sound Xp11

Quote

Hello Guys,  (conex, from DreamFoil Creations)

Please try this one:

dreamfoil-creations.com/downloads/DreamEngine.xpl.zip

Instructions:
- Download the file and unzip it
- Go to your AS350/Plugins folder and remove the "DreamEngine.xpl" folder
- Copy the new folder "DreamEngine.xpl" from the unziped file to your AS350/Plugins

The link above shouldn't expire anymore.

 

 

Cheers and all the best.

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12 hours ago, jt8d9a said:

Thank you for the hint, Nils !

Wow, the 206 looks very promising, hopefully it doesn't fly too easy as is mostly the case with freeware-choppers.

Krabi Outback is a nice freeware-scenery indeed, but can be pretty demanding regarding on performance, depending on which objects are in the sight of your view (at least on my old rig :happy: )

 

Another freeware-recommendation (for FSX/P3D and Xplane11), including a huge area is:

https://hawaii-photoreal.com/Downloads-X-Plane11NWS_Hawaii_Photoreal_Big-Island-2_X-Plan

SLW1_Hawaii-Photoreal-Big-Island-4_FSX-P

NWS_Hawaii_Photoreal_Maui-4_X-Plane-11.j

NWS_Hawaii_Photoreal_Oahu-1_FSX-Prepar3D

 

Cheers, Konrad.

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Posted (edited)

Dreamfoil :

R22  Works fine for me in 11, had a low rpm issue but it seems to be fixed  , handle this one and i bet other helis would feel like toys.

AS350 B3 , XP10 model , did have sound issue but there is a fix to it. Awesome bladeslap, fantastic. 

Dreamfoil has one of the top quality helis for Xplane. 

Bell X-trident 412 fantastic , has SAS , this is the one i use the most now. What i really don't like about it is the audio , but Swisscreation is working on a mod for it.

Can't say anything about the 407 don't have it , but there are many who consider it the best for X-plane.

The new released heli is by X-rotors the AW139 , even this one i can't say much about as i don't own it, but it's more of an advanced one.

Fantastic freeware 429 as mentioned by Paraffin.

No idea about the Gabri but reviews are good.

I am a mountain flyer. Either use Andras UHD / HD Mesh for Europe / North America ,  Quatam River by Propstrike.  and quite a few other paywares and a good number of freewares that can be found on .org.  

Dolomites by Frank seems to be a great payware for helis. Has a number of helipads.

I use Orthos over South Africa which is just brilliant and for my country India.  

Find helicopters more complex than fixed wings my personal opinion , so if you really want to start helling and are ready spend some then Gabri could be a good option to start with , why i don't suggest that you purchase the R22 / AS350 B3  because they are XP10 models ,even though for me it works fine in 11. The 11 models are coming.

Depending on what controls you have you will need to adjust. Especially the collective. 

Edited by HumptyDumpty
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2 hours ago, HumptyDumpty said:

Depending on what controls you have you will need to adjust. Especially the collective. 

That's a good point. The Bell 412 and others like it use a plugin that basically replaces the default X-Plane calibration for whatever you're using for a collective. I had to set up a custom curve on that axis for the throttle quadrant of my TM Warhog HOTAS controls. Without it, I was reaching over-torque with only half the throttle range. Adjusting the curve in a custom controller file fixed that, and it also works on the free (and excellent) Bell 429 which uses the same plugins as the payware 412.

This is one of the very cool things about the current version of X-Plane 11 -- you can set up controller assignments and response curves, save them, and apply to individual aircraft They load up automatically when that aircraft is chosen for a flight..

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6 hours ago, Paraffin said:

That's a good point. The Bell 412 and others like it use a plugin that basically replaces the default X-Plane calibration for whatever you're using for a collective. I had to set up a custom curve on that axis for the throttle quadrant of my TM Warhog HOTAS controls. Without it, I was reaching over-torque with only half the throttle range. Adjusting the curve in a custom controller file fixed that, and it also works on the free (and excellent) Bell 429 which uses the same plugins as the payware 412.

This is one of the very cool things about the current version of X-Plane 11 -- you can set up controller assignments and response curves, save them, and apply to individual aircraft They load up automatically when that aircraft is chosen for a flight..

Have modded my Logitech attack 3 as a Gyro + Accelerometer using an Arduino for the cyclic with an extension of 1.5 ft. , had removed the centering spring but as i don't want to purchase an extra one just for fixed wings put the spring back and its fine and still has that looseness for helis as they usually don't have a centering spring.

It's highly precise for helis without needing any curves for X-plane / DCS. The R22 does need some curves and stability due to it's twitchy nature and an overdone axis effect of XP10.

For fixed wings XP / DCS / il2 i need to add curves depending on the aircraft e.g. for the DCS Mig21  around 24 for Pitch / Roll , for the il2 aircraft around 10-15 again it all depends on the aircraft, the Mig21 curve suggestion are 25 by the developer.

For the collective it's again the second Logitech attack 3 , the small two finger throttle is assigned as a collective. in the process of making a custom collective / pedals which is a long process. 

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Still no choppers in IL-2 😕

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, jcomm said:

Still no choppers in IL-2 😕

I don't think we'll see one in IL-2, as helicopters were just in their infancy during WW2. The first model with production line status were the German Flettner Fl 282 and the Focke-Achgelis Fa 223 in 1941, but helos weren't widely used in any of the forces until the 1950s.

Edited by Airboeing
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6 hours ago, jcomm said:

Still no choppers in IL-2 😕

il2 is only good for what it does. 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, HumptyDumpty said:

Have modded my Logitech attack 3 as a Gyro + Accelerometer using an Arduino for the cyclic with an extension of 1.5 ft. , had removed the centering spring but as i don't want to purchase an extra one just for fixed wings put the spring back and its fine and still has that looseness for helis as they usually don't have a centering spring.

It's highly precise for helis without needing any curves for X-plane / DCS. The R22 does need some curves and stability due to it's twitchy nature and an overdone axis effect of XP10 

I did something similar with a spring removal on my TM Warthog joystick (but without the extension). The stock joystick has a very heavy spring, which works fine for air combat (sort-of simulates dynamic forces), but it's too heavy for delicate stuff like helicopter hovering, which shouldn't really have a centering force anyway.

So I used a mod I saw on YouTube, removing the big main spring. There are still four tiny springs left that give a very loose centering, but it's so loose the stick will stay flopped over at the side if I leave it there. Works great for helicopters, and it still works fine for civilian fixed wing flying.

If I ever get back into air combat sims, I might have to buy another ($$$) Warthog joystick and swap them out! Although that would also be the perfect time to do an extension handle mod on the modded Warthog stick. 

Edited by Paraffin
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24 minutes ago, Paraffin said:

I did something similar with a spring removal on my TM Warthog joystick (but without the extension). The stock joystick has a very heavy spring, which works fine for air combat (sort-of simulates dynamic forces), but it's too heavy for delicate stuff like helicopter hovering, which shouldn't really have a centering force anyway.

So I used a mod I saw on YouTube, removing the big main spring. There are still four tiny springs left that give a very loose centering, but it's so loose the stick will stay flopped over at the side if I leave it there. Works great for helicopters, and it still works fine for civilian fixed wing flying.

If I ever get back into air combat sims, I might have to buy another ($$$) Warthog joystick and swap them out! Although that would also be the perfect time to do an extension handle mod on the modded Warthog stick. 

Yep , i get the same flopped over the side thing even with the centering spring, probably because the sticks extended , doubt it would flop to the side with it's original length , for fixed wingz for il2 combat works fine though.

You can get the T16000m stick instead of the warthog , it has great reviews. was considering it but then i had the idea of using the Arduino with the MPU 6050,

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10 hours ago, HumptyDumpty said:

.You can get the T16000m stick instead of the warthog , it has great reviews. was considering it but then i had the idea of using the Arduino with the MPU 6050,

 ...I can confirm this: I'm using the T16000 for most of my heli-flying since more than 3 years, no problems at all, very responsive.

My collective is a DIY lever, and it works fabulous.

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4 hours ago, KBUR said:

My collective is a DIY lever, and it works fabulous.

Would be interesting to know how it looks. 

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8 hours ago, HumptyDumpty said:

Would be interesting to know how it looks. 

...we will see :laugh:.  Currently I'm at work but maybe tomorrow.

Thank you for your interest.

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I have the VSkylabs Mini-500 if it has not already been mentioned.  Nice single place commuter helicopter also equipped with an autopilot, simple with altitude and heading hold.  Lots of fun to fly and it can hover well.  For a twist, the VSkylabs gyro copter is also fun, and can make zero roll landings.  It flies like a gyro should.

John

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On 3/30/2019 at 10:25 PM, KBUR said:

...we will see :laugh:.  Currently I'm at work but maybe tomorrow.

Thank you for your interest.

Whenever possible. I need to make one too. 

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