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Progression to bigger aircraft?


Kirk

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Happy New Year to everyone!

 

So I've been flying Cessnas 172 and 182 for a couple of months now as a new flight simmer. I'm not quite ready to move on to something bigger (I still can't fly a circuit without it looking like a toddler's crayon drawing) but I want to eventually move on. I wonder if you experienced pilots, simmers or IRL, can suggest a progression I might take to eventually end up in a commercial jumbo jet. Should I move on to twin prop aircraft next? Or maybe small jets. I'm just looking for some guidance.

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Personally, I'd switch to a Mooney, Bonanza or Baron (or similar) next, then once comfortable with the airplane, learn to fly by instruments (the built in lessons can help, as can the FAA's Instrument Flying Handbook). This will help you a lot when moving on to larger, faster, more complex aircraft.

 

Then perhaps a twin turboprop such as an Aero Commander, Navajo or maybe as big as a King Air. The aim is to get used to things happening faster and to more complex cockpits a little at a time, then get comfortable with that before moving to the next step. And be sure you can easily use pretty much anything in the cockpit before moving to the next step.

 

Next probably would be a small bizjet, such as a Citation or Lear. You'll probably want to repeat a lot of the exercises you used in the Cessnas in order to get more comfortable with things.

 

Remember that in the sim it's tougher to look around and to see what's out there than it is in real life (which is why I went to the TrackIR), but you can work out a combination of cockpit and spot views to (at least partially) compensate for that, though there's not really a way to compensate for feel.

 

Larry N.

As Skylab would say:

Remember: Aviation is NOT an exact Science!

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Kirk - When I was doing my Private Pilot training, I had two ex-WWII flight instructors, very good instructors, well versed in just about anything with wings! At the time, my grandfather had a Cessna 180 and I wanted so badly to be able to fly that aircraft while he still owned it. I asked my one instructor Charlie G what was the major thing I had to master in order to be able to fly this 180. And his reply was, "Rick, flying a taildragger, especially a Cessna 180, is just like dancing to faster music, you just have to move your feet a little faster" and pay attention to your steps!" Well, it was a little more than that! The mere sound and the power this airplane had, was very intimidating, but, I kept what Charlie said, and the plane really wasn't as bad as it presented itself. One thing that helped me, I had a friend that had a local "Jump Center" and he needed a pilot to fly his Cessna 170B! I flew that plane many hours, and come to find out, my grandfather, previous to his owning the 180, had owned both a 170A and then the 170B, and finally settling with the 180!

 

Kirk, you are making a wise move in your flight simming by wanting to progress thru the available aircraft that FSX affords us! Get comfortable with each one, but not too comfortable! You still always want to "stay one step ahead of the aircraft" you are flying, AND remember, you have to "be able to dance to faster music!" This is only one saying that I have heard over the years, but it is one that always stuck with me. You may hear another from someone else in the field, maybe a fellow flight simmer or an instructor, should you ever decide the fly the "real thing!"

 

Only 1 more thing for me to add, get in the habit of using checklists! The bigger the aircraft get, the more complex they get and the checklists will keep you out of trouble!

 

Enjoy, Kirk, and keep us posted as to how you are progressing. This flight simming is a wonderful thing! It allows you, me and others to fly aircraft we could otherwise not afford to fly in real life and also educate you in the process!

 

Rick :cool:

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Thanks so much for the suggestions! It probably doesn't matter, but I'm using P3D now. I'm really looking forward to when I'm ready to learn to fly by instruments. That sounds like a fun challenge.

 

I'm definitely looking towards flying lessons in the future. I'd love to get a PPL at some point. It'll take a lot of years, I'm sure, since it's so expensive. But I'm seriously considering making it a goal.

 

Anyway, thanks again!

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I hopped into a Mooney Bravo and Acclaim last night just to get a feel. I got way too excited with the new aircraft. LOL. The different feel, the different power, it was like when I first took off in the C172... all new, and fun! I think that will be my next step. I've tried the G1000 a couple of times, which is what the Acclaim has, but I think I'll stick with the Bravo and her regular instruments.

 

I've been flying a "four corners" of the U.S. trip for quite sometime now, a hundred miles or so at a time. I started just North of the Mexican border, flew up the coast to Seattle, then took a right and am just now leaving North Dakota for Minnesota. I may try and get enough education and practice in to hopefully move into the Mooney by the time I get to Maine. I'm going to read about her history, then study her start-up procedures and checklists today.

 

Fun stuff!!

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Personally, I'd move onto a payware full fledged King Air for a while. After that get a payware B1900 C or D variant. PMDG has the BAe JS4100 turboprop which would be a good step up. Once you familiarize yourself with the King Air and a BAe or BC1900D, move onto the PMDG 737NGX. You'll love it! Go to YouTube and search for tutorial videos on the PMDG 737NGX. There's also a real world pilot of the 737NG on YouTube that has tutorials. His channel is FlightDeck2Sim.

 

Once you have that, check out the App PMDGSim (I think it's called) for your smartphone for a checklist. And look into the Top Cat add-on for performance characteristics settings. http://www.flightsimsoft.com/topcat/

 

You can make this all as real or as fake as you want. When I first started simming I started out in FS2004 and just took off out of Seattle with the default Lear 45. And I just learned, learned and learned some more. I never even knew you could slave your GPS to the Nav. At that time I was manually flying a GPS route by making constant and subtle course corrections based on the cross track error indicator in the GPS. When I saw a YT video on slaving the GPS to Nav I was impressed, and then I thought how easy is that. Now I'm not even flying.

 

Then I slowly learned how to use an ILS. I kept wondering just what those needles near the PFD were, and I eventually figured it out by myself.

 

When I got the PMDG 737 for FS2004 I just took off and learned how to use the FMC and all that myself with the aid of some YT channels.

 

The great thing about a Sim is that you can dick around all you want, but you'll live to see another day should you biff. LOL

 

If I got a King Air or BC1900D, I'd retrofit it with the RealityXP GTN 750. The TAWS (Terrain Alert Warning System) ability is well worth it. In real life the GTN has weather radar, but for some reason RealityXP's version doesn't have that incorporated into their gauge. Though, they do sell weather gauge add-ons. I never really found much use for a weather gauge. But it's there. The PMDG 737NGX has a weather gauge in the ND, but you need Active Sky Evolution at a minimum for proper cloud depiction. I'd just buy Active Sky 2016 with Cloud Art. I own both products and they've been pretty decent. The PMDG 737NGX also has the 737 TAWS ability on the ND which is flipping awesome. The HUD is also modeled in such a way that it looks real.

 

http://www.reality-xp.com/

 

https://hifisimtech.com/as16/

OOM errors? Read this.

"The great thing about flight simulation is that in real life there are no do-overs." - Abraham Lincoln c. 1865

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Once you familiarize yourself with big iron, take a dive into VATSIM. This is where your ATC and FMC, etc abilities will be put to use in a as real as it gets environment.

OOM errors? Read this.

"The great thing about flight simulation is that in real life there are no do-overs." - Abraham Lincoln c. 1865

An awesome weather website with oodles of Info. and options.

Wile E. Coyote would be impressed.

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Personally, I'd move onto a payware full fledged King Air for a while.

While that is kind of doable, Kirk indicated he wanted to do things right, progressing a bit at a time to learn things well. And that move wouldn't be very good in real life -- too many potential problems -- so my advice was predicated on the rate and quality of learning found in real aircraft, actually learning the systems in a building-block manner, which is basically at the root of most of the effective teaching techniques.

 

Of course being in the sim he can certainly do as he wishes. And as for VATSIM or similar, that perhaps should wait for a better understanding of instrument flight and ATC interaction, if it appeals to him at all (we're not ALL entranced by airlines, big jets and such and jumping in beyond our capabilities). There are actual reasons why real world training is laid out as it is, and to many folks doing something similar in the sim will have benefits.

 

To each his own...

 

Larry N.

As Skylab would say:

Remember: Aviation is NOT an exact Science!

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While that is kind of doable, Kirk indicated he wanted to do things right, progressing a bit at a time to learn things well. And that move wouldn't be very good in real life -- too many potential problems -- so my advice was predicated on the rate and quality of learning found in real aircraft, actually learning the systems in a building-block manner, which is basically at the root of most of the effective teaching techniques.

 

Of course being in the sim he can certainly do as he wishes. And as for VATSIM or similar, that perhaps should wait for a better understanding of instrument flight and ATC interaction, if it appeals to him at all (we're not ALL entranced by airlines, big jets and such and jumping in beyond our capabilities). There are actual reasons why real world training is laid out as it is, and to many folks doing something similar in the sim will have benefits.

 

To each his own...

 

Well said Larry!

 

 

On a RW note, I live in an area full of UPS, DFW, & a few Fed Ex pilots. So of course I have a chance for conversation with several at the swim club or wherever. If there's one thing they mostly seem to have in common, it's the fact they feel they're aren't allowed to fly at work!

 

Several pilots I know have small GA aircraft which they love! In fact some intentionally live far enough away so they can fly to and from KCVG in their own plane. I've heard more than once, that commute is often the only time they get to "Fly!" Otherwise they feel they're mainly computer programmers while their commercial aircraft fly them.

 

Be Careful What You Wish For! ;)

 

Michael

Being an old chopper guy I usually fly low and slow.
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While that is kind of doable, Kirk indicated he wanted to do things right, progressing a bit at a time to learn things well. And that move wouldn't be very good in real life -- too many potential problems -- so my advice was predicated on the rate and quality of learning found in real aircraft, actually learning the systems in a building-block manner, which is basically at the root of most of the effective teaching techniques.

 

Of course being in the sim he can certainly do as he wishes. And as for VATSIM or similar, that perhaps should wait for a better understanding of instrument flight and ATC interaction, if it appeals to him at all (we're not ALL entranced by airlines, big jets and such and jumping in beyond our capabilities). There are actual reasons why real world training is laid out as it is, and to many folks doing something similar in the sim will have benefits.

 

To each his own...

 

Well, I'm referring more to the Sim environment over the real world. In the Sim I can only imagine things are vastly different, and in fact I could tech a 9 year old how to fly a King Air in the Sim I'm sure.

 

I mentioned the King Air to B1900 C/D transition due to similarities in the cockpit with the difference of a larger plane. From there you could migrate to a 737 easily. Well, at least for me.

 

The Sim and real world flying are two very distinct things. The training in both are vastly different. IMO.

OOM errors? Read this.

"The great thing about flight simulation is that in real life there are no do-overs." - Abraham Lincoln c. 1865

An awesome weather website with oodles of Info. and options.

Wile E. Coyote would be impressed.

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The Sim and real world flying are two very distinct things. The training in both are vastly different. IMO.

They are two different things, but real world things generally apply to the sim -- the converse isn't necessarily so. The training in the sim doesn't have to be different from that in the real world, except to accommodate certain limitations in the sim. But you can't take most sim training that isn't real world compatible into the real world -- in the sim you can't get hurt and you won't destroy equipment or bother neighbors or scare wildlife; it's just "visible electrons" in a sense.

 

and in fact I could tech a 9 year old how to fly a King Air in the Sim I'm sure.

Yes, so could I -- in fact many 9 year olds could teach themselves in the sim (would take a while, though).

 

But the real reason I took issue with your comments above is that Kirk was wanting things to apply in the real world, to do things that way, and to learn a lot. He has ambition to fly in the real world sometime, so anything he can learn properly in the sim will benefit him later. So though he can't learn everything for the real world in the sim, he CAN learn more than he would taking shortcuts. And he can learn an attitude this way which will serve him well in the real thing -- extremely important.

 

In the end it's his choice, and since he specifically asked for something, that's what we gave him.

 

Larry N.

As Skylab would say:

Remember: Aviation is NOT an exact Science!

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They are two different things, but real world things generally apply to the sim -- the converse isn't necessarily so. The training in the sim doesn't have to be different from that in the real world, except to accommodate certain limitations in the sim. But you can't take most sim training that isn't real world compatible into the real world -- in the sim you can't get hurt and you won't destroy equipment or bother neighbors or scare wildlife; it's just "visible electrons" in a sense.

 

 

Yes, so could I -- in fact many 9 year olds could teach themselves in the sim (would take a while, though).

 

But the real reason I took issue with your comments above is that Kirk was wanting things to apply in the real world, to do things that way, and to learn a lot. He has ambition to fly in the real world sometime, so anything he can learn properly in the sim will benefit him later. So though he can't learn everything for the real world in the sim, he CAN learn more than he would taking shortcuts. And he can learn an attitude this way which will serve him well in the real thing -- extremely important.

 

In the end it's his choice, and since he specifically asked for something, that's what we gave him.

 

While I agree, I think the OP FIRST and FOREMOST needs to learn to fly - quite clearly from his post about `toddlers crayon drawing` he hasn't yet learned that. Moving on is a matter of mastery not boredom, so I would advise our OP to garner the skills needed to fly the 172 or 182 because they include the basic skills to enable proper flying.

 

Have you mastered trim? Power and trim changes? Using power for altitude and pitch for speed on approach? Mastered ILS and Glideslope?

 

Then no way are you ready to move on. P3D contains a logical step to cater for progression with `Learning Center` and tests. Have you tried and passed all those?

 

As others have said there is a structured, progressive path to development - both in the real world and in the sim.

 

The fact that you believe you are ready when you don't yet possess the flying skills shows that not only are you physically not ready you are mentally unprepared for anything that comes next.

 

Come back when you have completed all the Learning Center lessons with a clear pass and then it will be worthwhile discussing next steps... If you want to see how far you've got, go for a trial lesson in a real plane of a type you are familiar with (e.g, the 172). If you stay in complete control and the instructor allows you to manage the landing until the last few feet THEN you are ready AND will have demonstrated it so, in the manner you require.

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