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Attila

FSX Instrument Checkride

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Hello all --Question on the holding procedure in the second part of the FSX Instrument Checkride.Just to set the scene...after completing the VOR approach and missed approach, I get the instruction "Turn left heading 160 and climb/maintain 3000." Easy enough. Then "Proceed direct to the SEA VOR and hold on the 140 degree radial." That usually puts me heading towards SEA on about a 150 or so heading.So I'm approaching the holding fix (SEA) on a 150 heading to hold on the 140 degree radial. Absolutely everything I have read indicates that this should be a parallel entry to the hold but everytime I try it the extraordinarily friendly and helpful examiner fails me with the ever-so-enlightening comment "You failed to enter the hold correctly." No kidding! Care to tell me what you had in mind? LOL. Anyway I have tried flying a teardrop entry just to see if that would work (failed) and just for kicks tried a direct entry and hold on the 320 radial just to see if the programming was wacko! (that failed too, of course)So...I'm out of ideas. Can someone kindly enlighten me as to what I might be doing wrong? I'm not violating any of the other parameters (altitude, airspeed, etc) so those aren't at issue.All responses are welcome, but I'd especially like to hear from someone who has made it past this part of the ride.Thanks!!

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Hi Manny - Great info on your webpage -- very informative and easy to understand. And it confirms what I've been thinking all along. =)When I tried the teardrop entry, I fail the ride for the same reason (did not enter the hold correctly). There is no mention of non-standard turns and in fact, the standards in the pre-flight briefing specifically state "makes right-hand standard rate turn in holding."About the only question I have regarding the parallel entry is how far past the holding fix do you fly before making the turn to the parallel outbound heading? I wouldn't think it would be too far.Thanks!Scott

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Then 1 minute and a left turn to intercept the inbound under a 45 deg angle.

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This part of the checkride is tricky and I had to look into the script to see what the instructor wanted when I passed this ride a few months back.I found some of my notes on this and it seems that in some previous version of FS, there was a requirement to approach the VOR on the 160 radial, which was later changed to ANY radial. So, people assume they can set course to 140 and all will be well.Not so. The key is that you must enter the hold such that after you cross the VOR on your ANY radial, you must set course to 320 and perform a parallel or teardrop entry. The 320 course must be set by the time you get to within 0.4 miles of passing the VOR the second time.The easiest way to perform this part is to set course to your ANY radial as you approach the VOR. When you cross the VOR as indicated by the TO/FROM flag, set course to 320 and change heading to 140 and fly for 1 minute or so and then make a U-turn and intercept the already set 320 radial. Cross the VOR and make a standard right turn and fly a complete hold pattern.You have 5 minutes to cross the VOR on the 320 course after you crossed the VOR on your ANY course approach. You must fly the outbound leg for at least 55 seconds, but not more than 90 seconds.Have fun.

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Anyone else pass the instrument check ride lately that would have some more insight on entering the hold? I have tried everything Atila posted above and yet I still get failed for not entering the hold correctly. Enroute to the VOR I have the 320 course set on NAV1, and the direct course to the VOR on NAV2 (Usually around a 150). As soon as I pass over the VOR, I make a left turn to 140 for a parallel entry and fly outbound for 1 minute. It is at this point when I am about to make a left turn back inbound and complete the entry that the examiner fails me.I would love to hear from someone else who has made their way thru this maddening experience that might be able to give me some guidance. Oh, and BTW, thanks for nothing developers for not allowing us to save a flight during a check ride...nothing more frustrating than having to fly the initial 20 minutes of this ride over and over! Even on a real FAA check ride if you fail a manuever, you only have to do that one again and not the whole ride...

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I've been trying to get through the hold pattern, too. Here's some help:1) Look for "Inside the Microsoft FLight Simulator 2004 Instrument Rating Checkride" by Gordon Wood. It's here on AVSIM. Do a search.2) You can see the code that controls it in LessonsinstrRating Checkride.abl (you have to be fluent in computer code, though) Comparing this to Gordon's document it looks like they didn't change a thing between FS9 and FSX.3) There are two useful cheats in the code (well, maybe only one is useful). Find "kDebug = FALSE" and change it to TRUE (warning: save the file first, I take no responsibility for mucking about with your file.) This causes the examiner to fly the plane herself! Guess what? She flunks! And her hold entry is a complete mess. :-lol Made my day! Find "bCheat = FALSE" and change that to TRUE. That will enable you to do the complete checkride even if you flunk at an early stage. So now you can practice the whole thing. Useful. (No fair printing out the certificate, even if it lets you.)4) As for the hold pattern itself, here's what she's watching for: -You must CROSS OVER SEA EXACTLY. Fly direct to SEA on a course between 149 and 169 (don't ever go outside those headings), and keep on it until TO changes to FROM. Do not intercept the 140 radial! -Any entry will do, and forget the "racetrack". Go as far outside of it as you like. -Immediately set the OBS to 320 after crossing SEA or you flunk. -Try a backwards teardrop entry (outside the racetrack rather than inside). This would flunk you in real life but probably has the best chance here. Fly 170 for about 1 minute, then turn left and EXACTLY intercept the inbound course (heading 320 on radial 140). The reason being: -Once you start a turn, keep your bank between 5 and 35 or guess what? -As soon as your bank goes below 5, you'd better be between 310 and 330 or.... -You have to cross SEA with an accuracy of 0.4nm, so CENTRE the CDI -And don't use a bank more than 5, or a heading outside of 310-330 to do it. -In other words, if you don't roll out fairly accurately onto 320 the first time, forget it. -Your airspeed can be anything. At least that's one less thing to worry about. -Then fly a standard lap with right turns. The turns have to be as above. I think that's about it. Caveat: I haven't passed it myself yet. I may have missed something.Sorry about the length. Get a prof talking and you get a 50 minute lecture.Good luck.-theProf

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Thanks Prof...that is what I have been missing. Whoever programmed this must still be having a laugh over this one. Trying to pass this checkride has brought me back to the late nights of DOOM years ago trying again and again to beat the giant monster at the end of a level (only that was a fair fight:-lol).Armed with this knowledge I'll have to give it another try. I'm just thankful that a real instrument check ride is easier than this...I would have quit real flying years ago if I had failed an instrument check ride 30 times in a row!

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I finally passed the darn thing. Besides being extremely accurate throughout, which just takes practice, there's one more bug in the code that you have to work around. See section 5 below. Here's the rather lengthy (but hopefully useful to others)...The Prof's Checklist for Passing the Instrument Rating Checkride================================================================General: -Altidude: Maintain within +100/-50 (NOT +/- 100) -Airspeed: Maintain 100 +/-10 to first SEA crossing After that airspeed is not checked -Vertical speed: Keep within 300-1000 fpm on climb/descend -Heading: Keep within +/- 10 at all times Do not exceed even to correct your course -Course: When tracking VOR radial, localizer, glideslope +/- 2 or 3 degrees is needed. Keep that CDI vertical! -Bank: When turning, bank must be 20 +/- 15. Don't let it fall below 5 until heading reached +/- 10Specific stages:0) Setup -Adjust throttle to 2400 rpm -Get a nice big set of instruments (I like virt cockpit at 1.50)1) When asked to tune NAV1 -Pause -Set NAV1 to 116.80. (Standby to 110.90 is handy, too) -Set OBS to 338 (mandatory - you fail if you don't)2) Getting on course -Maintain 5000 ft, 100 kt, heading 065 -Intercept 338 TO SEA within 120 seconds -Don't turn too soon - you're a long way out. CDI not sensitive.3) Descent to SEA -When descending use 5 degrees down and 1900-2000 rpm -Enroute altitudes must be hit exactly - they're not minimums -Maintain 100 kt, fpm 300-1000 in descents -Heading 340-341 will maintain course 338 -Maintain 5000 to DME 17.0 3000 to DME 11.0 1600 to DME 4.3 840 to DME 0.04) On "go around" message -Airspeed no longer matters (for the rest of the ride) -Climb and maintain 2100 -CENTRE CDI VERY QUICKLY AND KEEP IT ACCURATE -At DME 5.8 be just a tiny bit right of course 339 (you must simultaneously be on a course no more than 341 FROM SEA and within 0.8 nm of PARKK, which is off to the right of course 339 - despite what the chart says - really a bug)5) After "climb to 3000 and turn to 160" message -Climb and maintain 3000. Hold until further notice. -Aggressive left turn in the climb with bank 25-30 (NOT ABOVE 35!) -***WHILE IN THIS CLIMBING TURN AND BEFORE HEADING HITS 170*** -Pause -Set OBS to 155. -Reason: If you hit heading 170 with a FROM flag you will always fail (improper hold entry) due to a bug in the code -Roll out on course 145-150 -Intercept course 155 as set on CDI and KEEP IT CENTRED -HIT SEA EXACTLY AND STAY ON COURSE UNTIL 5 SECS AFTER "FROM" FLAG -DON'T TRY TO INTERCEPT 140 RADIAL for a normal parallel entry6) Entry to the hold -IMMEDIATELY SET OBS to 320 and leave it there throughout the hold -Set the heading bug to 320, too, for reference -A parallel entry would be proper, but forget it - too much error -Use this improper (and backwards) teardrop entry: -Fly 170 for 60 seconds -Standard rate (20 degree) LEFT turn -Modify the bank BUT WITHIN 5-35 to INTERCEPT INBOUND COURSE EXACTLY -(The instant your bank drops below 5 degrees you must be on a course between 310 and 330 and within 3 degrees of the radial.) -CROSS SEA EXACTLY. Must be within 0.4nm, on course and on heading.7) Holding pattern -The INSTANT you lose the TO flag, standard 20 degree RIGHT turn -Fly 140 for 60 seconds (a bit more is OK, less is NOT) -Standard 20 degree RIGHT turn -Intercept inbound course exactly again (same as above) -Cross SEA exactly again (same as above)8) When you pass SEA and get the "descend to 2200" message -Pause -NAV1 to 110.90 (on standby if you set it earlier) -ADF to 362 -OBS to 130 -HDG bug to 326 -Descend and maintain 2200. Keep it there until on final. -Fly keeping ADF centred and heading 326 +/- 109) When you get the "clear to land" message at DME 7.7 -Use a bank LESS THAN 10 to chage course to 310 -HOLD IT THERE FOR 10 SECS MINIMUM10) Procedure turn -Standard rate L turn to 265. Must hit it within 30 seconds -Stay on 265 for 60 seconds (a bit more is OK, less is NOT) -Standard rate R turn to 085 -Intercept localizer accurately. Heading is 130. -Must be on localizer +/- 3 degrees within 30 seconds11) Final approach -Maintain heading 130 +/- 10 and localizer +/- 3 degrees -Intercept glideslope within 90 seconds -Maintain glideslope +/- 3 degrees, too12) Land -Checking is turned off at 300 feet AGL -Land within 60 seconds -Stop within 30 seconds of touchdownCELEBRATE!!Hope that helps somebody pass.-theProf

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Strong work Prof! I really have to believe that very few people have actually passed this ride...it takes a lot of patience to go through this over and over doing trial and error to figure out what exactly they are looking for. Things like having to maintain +/-10 on the heading while tracking a course line and the flawed holding procedure make this a tough nut to crack. MS might have done well to take a look at the FAA instrument practical test standards and made those the requirements to pass the ride instead of the gauntlet they have created. Or at least let you save the flight so you can pick up from where the last point you were successful. Really appreciate your efforts in sharing the "standards" with us. I might actually have to go give it another try now that I know what is required. And keep telling myself it's only a game...:-roll

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>Or at least let you save the flight so you can>pick up from where the last point you were successful.Thet would be very useful. I had a good long look through the code, including all the secondary source files that get loaded when the main .abl file is run, and couldn't find any obvious place where Save was disabled. It must be buried within the code for FS9/X itself. (Maybe if the code was moved out of lessons and into missions? Have to try that.)-theProf

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that was nostalgic, indeed.I also remember that checkride back in FS9, or was it actually FS2000?Also checked the script to get to see where I was failing. Remember so well of doing all the approach more than within A/H/S limits, after countless hours of repeating it. It was really self-fulfilling when finished. Never trusted on briefings alone since then, and made my comprehension of flight procedures much more acute.Following the script just aim for provided A/H/S windows. Some of them are framed, others are not.Hope you're not on Vista, otherwise you're always framed! :(pedro

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