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Guest Aviator_Frank

Steering big jets on ground?

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Probably a silly question but I have to believe big jets use the nose wheel not rudder to steer on the ground.Am I right ?If so there must be a way to assign a key to auto rudder?I think I have seen a joystick on the window side of some of the big jet cockpits?Thanks,Ron

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And so they do, up to a certain speed.In FS though this isn't quite possible. The nose wheel is in FS always linked to the rudder.

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So,I haven't used the auto rudder function since I got my pedals a long time ago,but would not using that option for ground taxiing be somewhat similar to using nosewheel?Just curious.Ron

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>And so they do, up to a certain speed.>In FS though this isn't quite possible. The nose wheel is in>FS always linked to the rudder.That depends on who build the model. I link the nosewheel to the ailerons so folks can "steer" with their joystick or yoke...

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Are real-life jets easier to steer than FSX models? I see real pilots able to hold course on the yellow taxi lines quite well, but in FSX I'm all over the place like a drunk driver.

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I can't comment specifically on jets, but I know that the light aircraft that I've flown are much more precise on the ground when using the rudder pedals the Cessna's and Piper's I've flown with nose wheel steering are very precise with rudder pedal and differential braking. Precise to the point that you can easily keep the nosewheel bumping over centerline lighting :)Clearly larger aircraft (jets using a nosewheel tiller at lower speeds) are just as precise.

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Rudder pedals are a sort of misnomer, they are rudder/brake and on most planes, nosegear steering as well. Pressing on the top works the brakes, the bottom the rudder/nosegear.Small planes usually have the nosegear coupled to the rudder for ground steering, so although you are using the 'rudder' pedal, you are actually turning the nosegear. The rudder isnt effected until you have airspeed.Another alternative for planes that dont have nosewheel steering is differential braking as well as differential thrust for multiengine planes.RE: airliners, they have a 'tiller' to steer with on the ground which controls the nosegear, and also use braking and thrust if needed. The tiller is used for slow speeds, generally under 60kts, and has a limited radius. On some aircraft it can be locked or unlocked for takeoffs.In FS, use the pedals/twist rudder for turning. I use CH since I found the twist rudder on a joystick way too sensitive. The pedals are also very sensitive so it doesnt take much to make a turn. Use either very sparingly and lead the turns, you will get smoother with practice.Hope this helps

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Thanks for all the info.Just trying to satisfy my curiosity.It just seemed to me that steering at very slow speed you would not get much control from rudder alone.Now I know in real life that it takes more than just the rudder.Ron

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I appreciate it, too! I thought because the rudder was far away from the landing gear's center, it would act as a fulcrum and any drag it caused would swing the tail of the aircraft out accordingly.

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in part, yes. In a far larger part it's due to the far improved situational awareness you get in a real aircraft as compared to staring at a flat screen.

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Yes indeed, plus not only the visual feedback but the sense of motion you get from the turn. Kinda like when you shift a manual transmission, your body naturally prepares for the momentary stoppage of acceleration by leaning in the seat a little.

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One thing I notice in FSX is that when you've got any kind of crosswind you seem to have to apply a certain amount of rudder/nosewheel just to keep going in a straight line. Presumably because the wind is blowing against the tail, applying a rotational force on the plane.Is this true in a real plane as well?Colin

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>One thing I notice in FSX is that when you've got any kind of>crosswind you seem to have to apply a certain amount of>rudder/nosewheel just to keep going in a straight line.>Presumably because the wind is blowing against the tail,>applying a rotational force on the plane.>>Is this true in a real plane as well?>>Colin>Yes, but no where near the way FS has it overmodeled.

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In small aircraft, it's possible in the real world to endure wing strikes against the tarmac if you don't account for crosswinds during taxi. In FSX, the wind can push your aircraft around a bit, but basically you taxi on rails.Sometimes the rails do get bent though, even in real life. As was mentioned above, the passenger jet pilots appear to have no difficulty keeping the vehicle on the centerline - usually. My last flight out, though, I was thinking about the same thing, and noticed that the pilot was drifting to the right a fair bit on taxi, and then pulling the aircraft back into line. What could I say? The pilots are very much more experienced than I am. "Stewardess? I think the pilot may need to re-calibrate his rudder pedals. Tell him to pull out the USB connector and plug it back in, and maybe reboot the system. I'm a Senior Staff Reviewer at AVSIM, so I know what I am talking about!". No, I didn't say that. I tightened my seatbelt, and in the air I said, "I'll have one of those vodka coolers, please." On the return flight, the pilot kicked the rudder very hard on the take-off roll. Again with the drifting off of the line. On the first flight, the windsock was flirting with 5 knots, on the return, there were substantial wind gusts. I suspect on my return flight, crosswinds required the heavy use of the rudder while on the take-off roll. On the flight out, with all of the drifting, who knows? I like to think the pilot was maybe thinking about baseball. After all, the pre-season is underway. Whatever the reason, it made me feel better that my own taxi skills are not so bad.If you are taxi-ing unsafely, be sure to slow down. Travel so slowly that you cannot possibly make a mistake. Anticipate your turns. A TrackIR will improve your taxi ability, if you an afford one, as will good rudder pedals. Abaove all, practise makes perfect!Jeff ShylukAssistant Managing EditorSenior Staff ReviewerAVSIM

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