• Announcing Millennium Aviation Company

    Millennium Aviation Company

    New Virtual Airline Announcement

    The Millennium Aviation Company

    This article gives comprehensive reference to a new idea in Virtual Airlines. For those who would like to skip the detail, you can go directly to www.macairvirtual.com which launched its new site on July 4th 2017.

    For those with more energy and time? Read on!

    There may be many who think that everything has been done in the Virtual Airline World, and mostly? You will be completely correct. There are many unique features that exist within each and every Virtual Airline, that do not easily co-exist in one stand-alone Virtual Airline.

    From the puddle jumpers, who just enjoy moseying around the little airfields, enjoying the scenery and picking up a passenger or two on the way. Then there are those who wish to graduate to something more adventurous. Perhaps heading for a Commercial Pilots License, through building up experience hours with the Cessna Caravan type of craft, out in Africa, or maybe some other exotic place out in the darker regions of Indonesia.

    Then there are the big hitters, whose enjoyment fits within the more rigorous pursuit of a career in the world of the bigger jets. Those who like to cut out the smaller aircraft, and just gun up those big engines and get down to big-iron activities.

    Whatever your interest or your need to either take the simple or the more complex route to flight enjoyment - there will be a Virtual Airline out there to suit your needs.

    The breadth and depth available out there is enormous. But how often, if you have even begun to try it out, have you found that you almost find your niche, where you hit upon an outfit that provides some of your requirements? And yet there is often something missing.

    For an example, many Virtual Airlines require that you follow a strict career path. Working from the lower end of the market flights, ranking up as you go along. If hours building is your thing? That's fine. But how often can you get totally out of puff, when you think "Another 35 hours to go before I can fly a larger aircraft. And then another 100 on top of that before I get into the fast jets?" Going crazy is not a good profile for what should be a satisfying and rewarding hobby.

    "Phew." Exhaustion can come upon you long before the oxygen has run out on the Flight Deck.

    Then there are the other strictures that are placed upon you. Such as the tightness of having to work within a rostered framework. Where you are required to begin your flight at the last airport that you landed at. And from where you must take off again. No leverage there, to go where you want, when you want. If this is your cup-of-tea, then that's just fine and dandy. If on the other hand, you like variety, and the ability to just jump on in any old aircraft from any old airfield, and do any old flight that comes to mind? Then the frustrations can really become evident quite quickly. Where you are totally strait jacketed into the roster 'Merry Go-Around.' There are enough 'goings around' going on without this sort of narrow band of activities.

    We mustn't leave the veterans out the mix. Those for whom the 'History of Flight and Aviation' combines a love of the past, and a wish to fly the 'old-birds' that hung up their propellers many years ago, but still come out and take a bow for high days and holidays. But how many Simmers can find a site where you can also dip in and out of this area of flight?

    To be sure, there are many opportunities to experience all of this, but in one place, under one Virtual Airline Roof, and with no set restrictions? A fluid experience, with so many options, that anyone is able to find the right mix for their needs?

    Well, at this juncture you obviously really won't have had the opportunity to look far enough into what is only now becoming available.

    For this 4th July, a new kid has entered the Virtual Airline world, in the guise of www.macairvirtual.com. Or for an easier ride, Mac Air Virtual has just hit the skies, and boasts being able to provide all the above for your enjoyment; plus a unique chance for you to totally immerse yourself in whatever genre of flight launches your boat. Or in this case, flies your aeroplane.

    This enterprise has been the brain-child of two long standing veterans and good friends of the virtual skies. 'Captain Mac,' and equal side-kick Eric 'Easy' Grindstaff. Otherwise referred to as 'Cowl Flaps' Grindstaff. It is appropriate, as when it comes to developing the structure of this new and innovative site, he certainly has done the work of two Donkeys.

    If you have never heard of Captain Mac before, then we can only say that you need to hot-foot it across to his You Tube site, and get a fill of his own special formula of sharing the varied experience of flight. Where he provides advice on how to do stuff, and invites you to share in his love and experience of all things Flight Simulation.

    He will take you through enough tutorials to fill your Encyclopaedia of Flight, and some of the information is even as accurate as Wikipedia! You can find him here.

    Eric and Captain Mac have had a good deal of involvement in Virtual Airlines, but have always felt that there is something missing.

    That being the opportunity to experience the virtual world through either an Open Career Path, a Professional Career Path or even through enjoying flying historical aircraft from bygone times. All in the same place. Mix and match to your hearts content, and fly what, where and when you want. Without the hindrance of restrictions and being over burdened with unnecessary rules and regulations.

    Although if you decide to follow the Professional Career Path? Be very ready for some really, really tough rules and regulations - for there is something for everyone at Mac Air Virtual. Officially known as the #Millennium Aviation Company.'

    As we have said above, all of this is available if you look around. But to have it all under one roof is a new departure from a very old idea.

    Down to the detail then?

    Having read the preamble, you will be pleased to know that there are many ways to access further information on the arrival of Mac Air Virtual. There is the You Tube offering from Captain Mac, supported by an Instagram, Twitter and Facebook account. If you cannot find what you are looking for, there are plenty of avenues to follow to find an answer to your questions.

    Although you will only need to sign up for one Pilot Profile Account, you will have the opportunity to involve yourself in three uniquely separate divisions within the structure of Mac Virtual.

    An unrestricted Open Division, an Historic Division with routes based on real world schedules from the 1950's era, and a highly realistic and interactive Professional Division to test your knowledge and skill with real world styled exams and Practical Checkrides...many VA's do boast a 'realistic' experience for those who wish to emulate real-world flight. But beware of this term at Mac Air! As one example, if you have no idea what a fixed prop setting is? Then this division will not be for you. This will solely be for those who are ready to immerse themselves in study, scrutiny and rigorous examination, based upon what does go on when working through the vagaries of seeking the ultimate realism of the cockpit.

    You will never run out of options for the aircraft that you fly, or the routes that you choose to take. Mac Air Virtual has over 350,000 routes, (this is not a misprint!), and an extremely generous 3,000 airline frames to pick and choose from.

    The tone of this VA is centered on Community, where you can enjoy the company of like-minded enthusiasts. Co-operatively involved and totally none confrontational. It is designed to promote camaraderie and personable interaction. Staffing is provided to support and advise you as you progress through the labyrinth - allowing you to identify what is right for you. Tailor made to your needs, and to your overall expectations. All staff are chosen from experienced 'Flight Simmers' who have already enjoyed being involved in VA's. Their positions will be based upon their own strengths, and abilities to help you through the various stages that you will experience over your time with Mac Air Virtual.

    Everything has been designed around 'freedom of choice.' No limits, and the only limitations and expectations are those that you place upon yourself.

    A quick summary of the divisions will give you a feel for where you might find a fit for your own flight experience. The Open Division is exactly that. Open to all and the place that you will begin your Career at Mac Air Virtual. Once signed up, you will be offered the choice of flying what, where and when you like. Using the vast array of routes and aircraft available. There are no restrictions to your operation, and you can pretty well do as you please, without the onerous expectations placed upon you as you step up to the Professional Division. For the Historical Division, you will need to apply for acceptance, but apart from that there will be no bar upon your involvement in flying not only the older aircraft, but once more and uniquely, you will be able to fly the routes that they flew all of those years ago.

    For those of you wishing to make the giant leap into the Professional Division, then the tasks and demands move up several gears - the demands will not be for all, but will provide options for those that really do want to get to the next level of realism.

    There is one caveat to applying for the Professional Division; that being a requirement for you to have completed at least 25 hours at Mac Air in either the Open or Historical Divisions, or a combination of the two. Then you can place your application to move on in to the Professional Division.

    Before jumping on into Mac Air, information on the machinations of applying and involving yourself in the Professional Division is provided through Captain Macs' You Tube Announcement here. It begins a way into the introduction - for the full video, just spool back to the beginning, and Captain Mac will fully introduce you to the VA.

    This brings us neatly around to the depth of your dive into the Professional Division, which will also very much depend upon the depth of your pockets!

    In the Open Division, everything is possible and all types of aircraft can be used. For those of you new to Flight Simulation, it is more than probable that you are using either the default aircraft that came with your Simulator, or freeware that you have picked up along the way. The buzz word with freeware, is mostly based around realism.

    The less complex the aircraft? The less knowledge you initially need to know to get it into the air, and successfully complete a take-off, a circuit and a landing.

    This is the very basics of flight, and the least that you will need to know to give you some satisfaction, of the experience of flight. Default aircraft have the advantage, that they make few demands upon you, and allow you to 'get an initial feel' of what it means to take to the air.

    It won't be long before you begin to wonder about what all of those knobs, dials switches and controls can really do. And after a good long time of emersion in finding out? It is normally at this point you might begin to venture forth in the investment of payware; where you can find third party 'add-ons' that have more complex systems. They all require another level of knowledge, on which to base your next level of experience.

    Without protracting this further, when you apply for the Professional Division, your abilities and understanding of the dynamics of flight, route preparation and procedures will be by necessity, light years away from the first faltering steps that you take with the default aircraft. What the Professional Division will invite you to do, is progress through real world requirements, to a point where you can 'apply' for your Commercial Pilots License, in the same way that you would strive for in the real-world environment. It will not be a journey for the faint of heart. Be prepared to spend many hours on the Flight Deck of such aircraft as the CRJ and ERJ. No quick and dirty route to the bigger jets in this Division!

    Training Flights, written exams and checkrides required in single engine fixed pitch aircraft? Yes indeed. And it goes on from there, moving up a notch each time that you progress. When you get into Instrument flight, more flying hours to complete, more training flights, written exams and further checkrides.

    If you prefer to read rather than view, all of this is available on Captain Macs' Virtual site, where each step is covered in the same level of detail.

    What is set in stone is that you must follow the rules of the Professional Division to be successful. And should you deviate from the Professional path? Be prepared, as in the real-world, for sanctions.

    It should be noted that Captain Mac and Ol' Cowl Flaps Grindstaff are already working on increases to the realism of the Professional Division, including a plan for Aircraft specific type ratings and more in the future. So if the challenge seems too small at present, no doubt you will find it quite a bit more challenging in the future. As with all great ideas, some implementations take a little longer than others.

    If it is not for you? Then the Open Division and the Historical Division will provide you with more lightness and less heat!

    There are also plans already in the works to create even more divisions in the future. At present however, the founders of this unique and exquisite airline are keeping those plans under tight secrecy...but a little birdie told me that military aircraft may play a role in the future of MacAir.

    Before embarking on an application, or thinking that a Virtual Airline of any kind is for you, have a good talk to yourself. Are you prepared to have to do at least some reading, to understand the basic requirements and operations of a Virtual Airline? Even at the basic level of the Open Division, there will be a need to understand and follow instructions set out in the Pilots Operational Handbook and Aircraft Substitution Charts. You will also need to be able to set up and manage a separate program, called smartCARS, which is an ACARS, (Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System), program which is used to monitor your flight, and report on your overall performance.

    As this is a Community based organisation, there is also the provision of a Forum for the use of all members. As this is going to be a very diverse area for members to visit, there are inevitably rules to follow. For the health and good order of all members, these are non-negotiable and heed should be paid in not overstepping how things are done in here.

    It is hoped that you will involve yourself in Community life, and contribute to the quality and enrichment of the life of all members. Lone Wolves are not what Mac Air particularly wishes to see, and those who just use the Airline for their own enjoyment, just to access the schedules, forsaking all others? Well, then MacAir may not be the VA for you.

    That is about all that you need to consider in determining whether this VA format is for you. If it isn't? That will be quite amazing, as this is an opportunity to do almost whatever you want, go wherever you want to fly, using whichever aircraft suits your own particular requirements.

    The only limits being those that you impose upon yourself. And the very real opportunity to test your abilities to the maximum. In your own time and at your own speed.

    Take a look at Captain Macs' introduction to Mac Air Virtual here.

    And we invite you to check out the site at www.macairvirtual.com.

    We look forward to welcoming you as you become a part of this new and innovative venture.

    1. CAF_Jep's Avatar
      CAF_Jep -
      Very nicely done Nels
    1. EasyE's Avatar
      EasyE -
      Thank you Stuart for such a fantastic write-up! I'm going to fly right over and join....Oh wait....I'm already the VP....
      Nels, thank you for supporting MacAir and posting this review. It's been a great membership driving tool.
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