• Review: Just Flight DC-8 Jetliner Series 50 To 70

    Cruise: Cruise is one of the phases of flight whereby the lack of an auto-throttle is really felt. I found myself constantly adjusting the throttle to keep the aircraft cruising at an acceptable speed. While I have not tried a long-haul flight in this aircraft, I do wish those who attempt such a feat the best of luck managing their speed.

    Descent: Once again, there is no automation to aid with your descent planning. In the absence of any aid, I reverted to simply initiating my descent based on my flight level, taking the first 2 digits of my flight level and multiplying by 3, giving me a rough idea when to initiate my descent. During descent though, the V/S mode on the autopilot was more than sufficient to get the aircraft down in a controlled fashion and even brought back memories of flying freeware airliners.

    Approach And Landing: Soon enough, I was on the most exciting part of the flight: landing. Instead of using any ILS system, I opted to fly the approach manually as the weather conditions were perfect. I noted that on approach, quite a bit of throttle input is required to keep the aircraft on the glidepath. If left to its own device, the aircraft has a tendency to sink rather quickly below the glidepath. Otherwise, the DC-8 is no different from any other airliner when it comes to landing.

    Just Flight - DC-8 Series 50 To 70     Just Flight - DC-8 Series 50 To 70

    Just Flight - DC-8 Series 50 To 70     Just Flight - DC-8 Series 50 To 70

    Tools And Utilities

    One major area of complaint from me regarding this product is the lack of any tools or utilities for the operation of the aircraft. Whilst an animation control panel may be a luxury, for an add-on of this price, I did expect at least a fuel and payload utility. Instead, we are forced to use FSX's default fuel and payload utility to configure our aircraft. While it's certainly not the end of the world, it gives the feeling that Just Flight may have rushed this product to market.

    Additionally, the lack of a panel-state utility is yet another complaint I have for Just Flight. Sure, it is not a tremendous hassle to first load the default Cessna 172, then turn off the switches before loading the DC-8 or perhaps even save a flight with the cold and dark panel state, but for the price of the add-on, I feel that it is not completely unreasonable to ask for something as commonplace nowadays as a panel-state utility for the aircraft.

    Final Thoughts - Series 10 To 40 Or 50 To 70?

    In the end, despite some of the complaints I have, I believe that the Just Flight DC-8 Series 50 to 70 is an excellent package for any lover of the Douglas DC-8. Compared to other add-ons, I believe that Just Flight's biggest advantage is their comprehensiveness in covering the entire DC-8 lineup, from the first ever aircraft to the latest the great Super 70s.

    Having said that, though, I do have several complaints regarding the aircraft as outlined above. Whilst functional, the aircraft itself doesn't seem to exude quality from the get-go. Whilst I've learnt to appreciate the work that's been put into the aircraft, that appreciation didn't come easily. For users who are on the fence about the aircraft, a sale would most certainly resolve your worries.

    At this point, I'm sure many users have a pertinent question on their minds: Whether to choose the Series 10 to 40 package or this one.

    Having flown both the Series 10 to 40 and Series 50 to 70, I do feel that the latter has a slight edge over the former. Whilst I personally found no additional complaints for the Series 10 to 40 package, I do feel that the availability of the Super 70s in this package gives the user a very different experience flying this aircraft compared to the variants contained in the Series 10 to 40. Hence, should you have no preference for which variants of the DC-8 you're interested in, it is my personal belief that the Series 50 to 70 will yield a more varied experience for you.

    Just Flight DC-8 Jetliner Series 50 To 70

    Meng Yu

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    1 Comment
    1. oldcrusty's Avatar
      oldcrusty -
      I think it is excellent value for money and a very good sim model now. I got this when it first came out and it was riddled with bugs and problems but and I say but - they appear to have all been fixed with several service packs. You get a great selection of types and good graphics and performance. I think the night lighting is amazingly well done. As for flying it well it was a DC-8 and it had its idiosyncrasies like the reversers, start etc and the hydraulics but it was not a Boeing and for simmer who like Douglas aircraft well it is actually a logical progression and step up from the pistons. I like it a lot, just do not do much flying with it now - not enough hours in the day alas.
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