indyrocks

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    Indianapolis, IN USA

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About Me

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    Retired teacher (physics, math, computer programming)
  1. indyrocks

    Speedbrakes on the default 737

    The same structures perform two different functions. When they're used in the air to slow down (usually during descent), they are acting as speedbrakes. When they extend after landing to help dump lift, they are spoilers. There's nothing wrong with using either term since we all know what is being discussed.
  2. indyrocks

    Flight Deck Question

    Even the "No Electronics" sign is soon to be obsolete since the FAA, CAA, and most other regulatory agencies have relaxed the restrictions on the use of electronics during all phases of the flight. I flew on B777's from 3 different airlines in the last few weeks, and all of them permitted the use of approved electronics from gate to gate. I was able to keep my IPhone and Nook e-reader on during the entire flight, although the phone was in airplane mode. The only non-approved electronics are those that transmit a voice signal (e.g. cell phones that are not in airplane mode). If they haven't changed their policies yet, all airlines are likely to adopt the new policy soon. An example of that new policy can be found here for American Airlines, and here for British Airways.
  3. indyrocks

    Old habits die hard

    Patrico: One of the best gifts that I've received recently was a copy of a book called "Microsoft Flight Simulator for Pilots: Real World Training". It is very well written, with a 4 1/2 star average based on 138 reviews. It is well worth the $12 - $15 that it costs on Amazon. I have a private pilot's license, so that part of the book was more of a review. (If you've never taken any flight instruction, or if you're in the middle of that instruction, you'll find that it is very useful in that regard. The title says it all.) I was most interested in the sections on Instrument and Commercial flying. The book clearly explains the various phases of an instrument flight, from Clearance Delivery to Ground Control to Tower to Departure Control to Center to Approach to Tower to Ground. My only complaint is that the graphics are all in gray-scale. Some color here and there would have been good, but it would also have increased the price. Anyway, perhaps a late request to Santa? Or a visit to a used book store, which is where my 'Santa' found my copy.
  4. indyrocks

    Getting the 777 next week...

    I use Dropbox to load up any documentation that I want to read through. Than I can use WiFi on my Nook (or even my IPOD) whenever I get a chance to read it. With Dropbox, I can keep everything stored in the cloud, or I can choose to download it to my device if I'm not going to be near a reliable WiFi connection. That way I took all the T7 (and Majestic Q400) documentation with me to Europe a few weeks ago to pore through on the long train rides or the quiet evenings. It was especially interesting reading about the 777 while actually on a 777!
  5. indyrocks

    777-300ER Air Force One

    Since the current colors were selected by Jacqueline Kennedy when the 707's were being used, there is a lot of sentiment regarding them. Even generations later, there is a powerful mystique surrounding the Kennedy name. It would be very unpopular to change it just for the sake of change. Besides, when you see either of the 2 aircraft up close, it's a beautiful classic livery. It certainly doesn't look 50+ years old!
  6. indyrocks

    Taxi Cam

    Necroposting. I love the new term (new for me, anyway). Thanks Kyle.
  7. indyrocks

    Service Pack 1C

    You might try checking the PMDG Operations Center. Even after I installed SP1c, there were still updates there for the -200 and -300.
  8. indyrocks

    747-400X external view issue

    I don't have any drooping panels, as shown in these screenshots ...
  9. I use both PFPX and SimBrief interchangeably and both work very well, including the creation of an FMS-specific .rte file. However, there is a significant difference between them in one respect ... cost. PFPX costs $60 (on the Aerosoft website), while SimBrief is free.
  10. indyrocks

    QNH to STD PRESSURE

    This thread has wandered so far off topic that the OP has started another thread in his search for a solution. Normally I wouldn't recommend that, but in this case it's perfectly understandable.
  11. indyrocks

    747V2

    The aircraft shown on the screen is the 747-8i. Go to ~1:20 and you'll hear him explain. Apparently those old cows don't know everything.
  12. indyrocks

    QNH to STD PRESSURE

    To get some answers from people who have some real-world experience, I posted the following in the ATC Issues forum at PPRuNe: I've noticed that the SIDs out of most of the London airports restrict departing aircraft to a relatively low altitude and a low airspeed for quite some time/distance. For example, all of the EGLL SIDs top out at 5000 ft or 6000 ft despite the fact that they cover up to 60 or 70 miles of lateral distance. I know there must be airspace limits to allow the traffic from all these airports to mix safely, but it seems a bit excessive to keep an airliner departing EGLL or EGKK to still be flying at 6000 ft/250 KIAS as they pass over the DVR VOR. Are these SIDs usually flown in their entirety, or is it common for ATC to approve an early release to enroute altitudes and speeds? Here are some of the responses so far... "Heathrow Director may come along and explain it better, but all departures are designed so traffic procedurally ie non radar remains below arriving traffic. On a DVR departure for instance, traffic crosses below arrivals routing to OCK VOR which normally descends to FL70 depending on the altimeter setting. The 250 kt speed limit is normally cancelled by the departures controller as early as possible and the aircraft is climbed above the SID altitude as soon as it is clear of the arrival pattern. It's even more complicated with Heathrow landing on 09L as BCN departures are vectored parallel to arrivals from OCK and BIG and climbed above the arrivals by the Heathrow Director so you get two tracks of aircraft parallel, one descending and the other climbing." ... posted by chevron (6th Aug 2014, 20:45) "I've never seen a LL or KK departure still at the SID levels overhead Dover. They are usually above FL240 by this point and being transferred to Maastricht for higher. The worst affected SIDS are SS departures via Dover as they get stuck underneath the LL arrivals from the east and then are usually climbed underneath LL and KK departures routeing the same way. So are frequently still at FL80 passing Detling. However, this is all set to change when LAMP comes in supposedly late next year (I think)." ... posted by Juggler25 (27th Aug 2014, 02:03) "I fly out of London City and stop altitude is 3000'. We normally do stop at 3000' on the BPK departures but soon get climbed and would expect to be at 6000' at BPK where the SID ends. On DVR and LYD departures we soon get to 6000' and might still be there at DET, but would expect to be about FL200 by DVR or LYD. When we fly the ALKIN3F arrival, we have to be FL100 at WAFFU, about 100nm track miles from touchdown....(It is very busy airspace)" ... posted by renard (27th Aug 2014, 05:24) "I was a Heathrow controller for most of my life and never saw an outbound from Heathrow cross DVR at 6000ft!! The TMA controllers do their utmost to climb outbounds ASAP and they do a remarkable job in very congested airspace." ... posted by HEATHROW DIRECTOR (28th Aug 2014, 05:15) "It is all worst case senario, and also for RTF failure procedures to ensure the departing aircraft are well clear of the stacks/inbound flows before commencing climb as per the failure procedure. As mentioned above, LAMP will begin to be introduced (3 or 4 stage implementation) to improve this. At present, all aircraft have to fuel up for the worst case senario, a heavy going longhaul on a DVR SID burns ridiculous amounts of fuel during the departure - carrying extra fuel just to be able to carry the worst case senario fuel. I've seen the figures but cannot remember exactly so not going to guess, but it will be millions saved in fuel cost PER ROUTE each year (based on a full B747 to Singapore departing on the DVR SID every day off 27L/R). Stage 1a of LAMP introduces point merge approaches to Gatwick and London City & will improve departure routes from London City, Southend, Biggin Hill, Standsted & Luton. The knock on effect is more possibility for earlier climb departing Heathrow & Gatwick. I believe the SIDs off LL & KK will be shortened to end at DET too so the fuel carry will be slightly improved. It's a long & gradual process but eventually (2019??) all the changes will have been made & the much better profiles introduced." ... posted by zonoma (28th Aug 2014, 05:27) It's refreshing to read through the PPRuNe forums in which questions can be asked and answered/discussed without suffering the inane comments of people who don't have anything substantial to add to the discussion.
  13. indyrocks

    QNH to STD PRESSURE

    There are a couple of other reasons for RC giving this "helpful reminder" about assigned altitude. If you don't maintain a climb/descent rate of +/–500 fpm, RC interprets this as leveling off. If you use VNAV to control the climb, some aircraft begin to struggle above FL300 or so. That's why I've made it a personal procedure to always use the VS mode for the last portion of the climb. If you fly a SID that requires leveling off at an intermediate altitude below the ATC-assigned altitude, make sure RC knows about it. Under Dep Procedures, select No Altitude Restr. That means ATC will not issue any intermediate altitude assignments, so it is up to you to climb when necessary. Even if you make the selection shown above, the RC controller may complain. I've encountered this mostly when departing London Heathrow. Almost all of EGLL's SIDs require you to maintain an altitude of 6000 ft for quite some time/distance. (The DVR SID requires you to maintain 6000 ft until passing DVR, almost 70 miles from EGLL!) This restriction is shown on the charts as 6000 ft, so you are expected to keep the local barometric pressure setting in the altimeters until you pass the final point in the SID, at which point you switch to the standard 1013 mb as you begin to climb. However, ATC may not like the fact that you're maintaining 6000 ft, even if you've selected the No Altitude Restr option described above. Possibly the confusion is because the Transition Altitude is also 6000 ft, so possibly RC hasn't been programmed to handle this situation properly. Note: A friend of mine has come up with an alternative procedure for flights out of EGLL in which he sets an initial cruise altitude of 6000 ft, and then requests climbs until he gets to his intended cruise level. ATC is happy, but it's a royal PITA. Unfortunately, RC isn't likely to be improved any time soon, since its creator has had some major upheavals in his personal life and has stepped away from RC to enjoy the other things in his life. Despite these problems, I use RC on most of my flights.
  14. indyrocks

    Do you use Active Sky Next?

    I don't think I've ever seen so many unanimous opinions on an avsim forum! I'll add my voice to everyone so far -- if you can only buy one of the two products, then I would recommend ASNext. I have been a REX user, and still use their textures, but the ability to use a fully-functioning radar was just too much for me to ignore. (The 737NG from another company :wink: actually used it first, so I get to enjoy the radar in two different aircraft. I'm surprised more aircraft developers aren't adding the ability to their products. It would breath some new life into older models.) ASNext is relatively expensive, but it enhances your flying experience so much. Without it, you're not using the -200LR and -200F to their fullest. At some point, you will want to buy the 777-300ER. It is different enough to almost qualify as a new product. But that can wait until you've flown the -200LR and -200F models so many times that you're becoming bored, although that's pretty hard to imagine.
  15. indyrocks

    Lost the 777-200LR after update

    Same here. After the update to SP1b, I noticed two things... All of my custom internal and external views had been replaced in the aircraft.cfg files with the default views. All of my -200LR airline repaints were gone from the FSX Free Flight list; only the PMDG house colors remained. Strangely, my -200F and -300ER repaints were fine. On a hunch, I opened the Operations Center to see if there were any messages. Lo and behold, there was just such a message waiting for me that said something like "we have detected that some liveries have been deleted". (I can't remember the specific wording.) When I ok'd the software to replace those missing liveries, they were all back within a few seconds. The custom views were not replaced, however. Since I've been down this road a few times before, I had my custom views saved to a separate, read-only file so it only took a couple of minutes to re-install them in all 3 aircraft. Lessons learned... If any changes have been made to the aircraft.cfg files (e.g. custom views, Shockwave lights, edited exits, etc.), keep backup, read-only copies in a separate folder. This is especially important before starting any upgrade because there might not be any warning about replacing edited version with a default version. (I learned this one with other aircraft.) Check the PMDG Ops Center every few days. You never know what might be waiting for you.