• Interview: Keith Walton

    Keith Walton Interview

    Conducted by Dominic Smith

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    Keith, thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to talk to FlightSim.Com.

    No problem Dominic I am more than pleased to do so.

    Could I begin by asking you about when and why you chose to model the Grob Tutor?

    Back in 2010 I picked up PC Pilot magazine for the first time one day while shopping. I had never looked at flight simulation in detail before. What impressed me was how realistic the add-on aircraft were. Laminar were advertising X-Plane 9 and I liked the look because it had Plane-maker included and that allowed you to make your own aircraft. So right from the start it was the ability to make your own aircraft that got me into X-Plane. In a short while I made some simple models that actually flew! Then one day I came across the RAF 2011 yearbook and discovered the Grob Tutor was featured in one of the articles. It seemed to me it was a great little training plane and I liked the fact that young people were learning to fly in it. Unfortunately not everyone gets the chance to reach their full potential in life and the Tutor was inspiring them and that was a good thing. I wanted to model something worthwhile so I chose the Tutor, not knowing later that it would evolve into a real world training aid for the cadets.

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    Have you had any hands on experience in the real aircraft?

    I have a disability that prevents me from flying but I get feedback from others that do fly them. The flight model of the Tutor has been refined by their input and I must say they are very demanding in terms of accuracy.

    What have you found to be the biggest challenge of the project?

    The biggest challenge was learning by trial and error. When I bought X-Plane 9 the manual for Plane-maker consisted of just a few pages. Thankfully X-Plane is very well documented now and if anyone wants to make their own aircraft the information is there for them. But in the early days my models were very crude and I was not happy with them. I just kept on working and refining things until finally it started to come together and I was getting the results I wanted. Eventually I reached the stage where people started asking if they could use my models in their simulators to train people to fly. When I accepted the invitation I started to get positive feedback, particularly with the flight dynamics and this was very valuable data.

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    How do the flight dynamics compare to the real aircraft?

    I am told they are pretty near the mark and that was by a Tutor instructor that flew Concorde!


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