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Guest SkyDrift

Holy aircraft carrier landings Batman!

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First a question, where is the speed brake on the F-18????Next, that has to be the most difficult thing ever! Trying not to fall out of the sky while attempting to line up with a moving runway.. I managed one landing after about 1.5 hours of crashing into the edge of the ship. I think I just cost the gov't about $100 Billion.

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Take heart bub ... here's some carrier landings by actual US Air Force trained pilots:

Here's an F18 having a bad day:http://youtube.com/watch?v=_WmRi1CkD50You'd think it would be a cinch in a helicopter, but you'd be wrong (language warning on this video):
Here's a cockpit view of someone doing it right:
Landing on an aircraft carrier is the ultimate test of pilotage in my view. Doing it at night, in weather ... well, it's just crazy that anyone ever thought "Hey, I could do that."It ain't supposed to be easy, I guess ... but with enough practice you should be able to master this unique skill.

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some carrier landings by actual US Air Force trained pilotsNow that is a scary thought.I saw my first carrier landing from the right seat of an A-3 at night on the FDR in 1973.That is the hardest thing in real aviation in my opinion. Period.It's always been hard in flight simulation - but I think the Acceleration product has really stepped up the intensity for the Flight Sim fans.

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Use the force!Kidding.Carrier landings aren't really that tough. The part that throws most people is that your landing area is running away from you on a slightly different heading than you need it to be. Get your speed stabilized well out from the carrier when in landing config. Zoom in to stay lined up at a distance, and remember that carrier is booking along at 30 knots, so you have to aim well to the right of the landing area to compensate. You'll be on a 5-10 degree crab angle to the right on landing depending on winds. All the way down just pay close attention to your speed (125-140kts depending on weight) and make lots of fine throttle adjustments to keep your descent rate stable. The F-18's airbrake causes a very realistic pitch up motion when in use so best to avoid that on approaches, just use your throttle. This is one of those cases where power really does equal altitude and pitch equals airspeed. Good luck.And look on the bright side, nail that, and you're ready to join the LOMAC world for some true vertical learning curve action. :)

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Hal's right. If you need the speed brake, then you didn't plan correctly.When you turn final, you should be at 170kts and about 1,000 feet. At 2 miles out, you should be no faster than 140kts (preferably 135) and about 800 feet.At 3/4 mile out, when you call the ball drop, you should already be lined up and about 600-700 feet, descending very slowly. Push the nose just a hair, and inch off the throttle to compensate for the additional airspeed and it makes it easier to keep the runway in sight.Lastly, don't aim for the rear of the carrier. If you do, you'll probably hit it. Aim for 50-100 feet further down the runway. As you come in, you'll see the 4 wires. They're a lot further down the runway than you might first suspect.Don't flare the aircraft on landing (you're trying for all wheels to hit simultaneously) and as soon as you feel yourself hit, go full throttle in case you miss the arresting cables, or else you'll go right off the forward end of the carrier and get run over by about 600 million tons of steel.

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Yeah, I managed to do it several times. I didn't need the speedbrake to land, just to slow down after taking off. The carrier landings aren't that bad really compared to lets say...........Picking up a crate with a chopper and setting it on the back of the truck. I never laughed so hard in my life when ... well, let the picture do the talking. Oops!!... it only rolled about 25 feet after it flung off the cable!http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/gar...9-44-23-233.jpg

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Garret that's awesome. Anytime a game can make me laugh, especially when it's intended to be serious, it's a true joy.For anyone who wants to see what a carrier landing really should look like, I recommend buying a copy of the film Speed and Angels. It's a fantastic documentary on the training that goes into being a US navy pilot and all things considered is relatively unbiased on current events. The dogfight training scenes are pretty inaccurate, but mostly due to the limits of filming such things. The carrier ops portion of the film however is amazing, and could be quite helpful for those new to carrier ops with acceleration. Particularly impressive in the film is the calm "business as usual" demeanor of the Tomcat rio/instructor pilots when under obvious stress.

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Ya, that's a #### difficult mission to complete, and I've been flying choppers in FSX almost exclusively for the last 18 months.And there's about 5 of 'em!Gonna be a long, hard winter.

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As you know FSXMissionguy (since you helped me) that I just started with choppers, so that doesn't help much. That machine is a different beast as soon as you hook something on that cable but I won't give up but I'll make sure I save often so I don't have to start from the beginning ;)

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Uhm are there any carriers with the new features in free flight mode? The only carrier I know which has been there for the last ten thousand years of Flight Sim has been the one near SFO, but that one is still ole, does not have wires nor catapults. :-hmmmCheers, :-beerchugEtienne :-wave

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You land hot...you do not use speed-breaks... and as soon as you feel the main landing gear hit the deck..and you actually 'hit' the deck, you go to full thrust until you are retarded by the capture-cable via the tail hook. When you are obviously captured because your tonsils are hanging out of your mouth, only then do you go to full idle. BTW, you aim to have your hook grab the second (middle) capture/guy cable.You go to full thrust as you **always** assume that you have not in fact engaged the capture cable so you can get your butt off of the deck for a go around. :)Mitch

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>Hal's right. If you need the speed brake, then you didn't>plan correctly.>>When you turn final, you should be at 170kts and about 1,000>feet. At 2 miles out, you should be no faster than 140kts>(preferably 135) and about 800 feet.>>At 3/4 mile out, when you call the ball drop, you should>already be lined up and about 600-700 feet, descending very>slowly. Push the nose just a hair, and inch off the throttle>to compensate for the additional airspeed and it makes it>easier to keep the runway in sight.>>Lastly, don't aim for the rear of the carrier. If you do,>you'll probably hit it. Aim for 50-100 feet further down the>runway. As you come in, you'll see the 4 wires. They're a lot>further down the runway than you might first suspect.>>Don't flare the aircraft on landing (you're trying for all>wheels to hit simultaneously) and as soon as you feel yourself>hit, go full throttle in case you miss the arresting cables,>or else you'll go right off the forward end of the carrier and>get run over by about 600 million tons of steel.>fsxmissionguyThats good info. BTW, what do you mean when you say "when you call the ball drop"And how do I read/interpret that light signal?I got it on my 5th attempt..But I still don't know how to interpret that light/ball??

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>Uhm are there any carriers with the new features in free>flight mode? The only carrier I know which has been there for>the last ten thousand years of Flight Sim has been the one>near SFO, but that one is still ole, does not have wires nor>catapults. :-hmmm>>Cheers, :-beerchug>Etienne :-waveI also can't find this carrier in "free flight"I took off in New York and flew SE to where I thought it is, but couldn't find it (even with the radar turned on).The carrier missions don't let me do an instant replay, which must be soooo cool just to see an actual carrier landing from all angles.Ohh, and since nobody has answered the OP's question yet, the speed brake key is "/"

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Here's the best definition I found for "call the ball." Essentially, it's just the way the pilot tells the landing officer that he has the approach lights in sight._____Ball (The) - The glowing image projected by the FRESNEL LENS. This light gives glideslope reference. Short for

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