One of the great things about FS addons these days is you can get about as close to flying them like the real airplane as you care to - or don't care to - as the case may be. If you're a "firewall the throttles" and blast into the air type (and all of us are on occasion! ) there are probably more interesting shots in other threads to look at today. If you're in a realistic mood - read on. These are shots for all of you who like to diddle with realistic engine settings and instrument readings.
The shots show the Alphasim B24J WWII bomber "Cocktail Hour" in the first part of a ferry flight from Gander, Newfoundland to Prestwick Scotland sometime in early 1944. The B24 had the range to make this 2000 mile ocean crossing flight in one jump without having to make the intermediate refueling stops in Greenland and Iceland that other WWII planes - such as the B17 and P38 -heading to Europe from the U.S. had to make.
Here we are climbing above the clouds to our planned cruising altitude of 25,000. The setting sun shows we've planned a night flight so that the navigator can get the benefit of star sights - about the only way of getting a really accurate position over water in 1944. Good celestial fixes can be to within 1/4 mile accuracy - not GPS but not bad! "Close enough for government work" as the saying goes. Nav estimates the enroute flying time at 9+40
A closeup of the "Cocktail Hour" nose. Besides the great nose art the thing to notice about this shot is the nose turret - added to later models of both the B17 and B24 after headon attacks by Luftwaffe interceptor pilots downed large numbers of airplanes and crews
A shot of the instrument panel showing us climbing at the recommended best climb airspeed of 170 mph. Interestingly WWII airplane airspeed indicators read in miles per hour - not knots like modern airplanes. The vertical speed indicator was bouncing around in turbulence during this shot - the airplane climbs at about 500- 800 fpm at this climb speed - not the 200 fpm indicated in the shot
Engine management could be a full time job in this bird - check the 12 engine levers. This shot shows the climb power settings of 46" manifold pressure and 2600 RPM plus the mixture controls which need to be periodically adjusted for changing altitude. Also need to make cowl flap adjustments and keep a bunch of engine instrument readings inside acceptable limits.
Level at 25,000 with the sun down and a new moon
With stars visible thru the front windscreen it won't be long til the navigator's sextant appears in the astrodome we can see in front of the windshield strut for the first of his hourly star shots to keep us on course. Fortunately we're above the clouds with good visibility so seeing stars is no prob
An interesting aspect of the B24 is the flight manual recommendation for extending flaps at high cruise altitudes to counter a nose up tendency. Flaps are unusual for cruise flight. We've got ours extended to 10 degrees and - by George! - it does lower the cruise nose attitude
You can get a copy of about any real world flight manual you want these days. I used this B24 WWII pilots operating manual for this flight and found the Alphsim version flew real close to the book illustrating how accurate today's flightsim models are