tarzanboy
Topic Author
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2003 8:18 am

Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sat Aug 07, 2010 8:51 pm

Are there any airline pilots who are proficient in the real cockpit and real simulators but suck at flight simulators such as Microsoft flight simulators?

I ask because sometimes I can't seem to land proper and landing short of the runway and on the side of the runway etc. and this is lowering my esteem because I think if I suck at this level maybe one day I would suck at the real thing.

I know the home computer flight sim and the real sim and the real cockpit are three different ball games but I thought I would ask you pro guys to see if you suck at the home computer sim too - so this could boost my morale a bit, knowing that I am not alone!!

Please reply.
 
HaveBlue
Posts: 2104
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2004 3:01 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sat Aug 07, 2010 10:15 pm

I can't answer your question completely because I'm not an airline pilot, just a private pilot, and I don't use MSFS but I can tell you this... don't let that stop you or get you down no matter what the answer ends up being from the pros. It is, for certain, a different ball game. MSFS is a great tool but is not real flying and I would not let any perceived deficencies in MS from making you worry about stepping into flight training. Even after you get a pilots license, and you will if you want one bad enough, you will make less than perfect landings and not always be on your mark. That applies to all of us for the most part. You'll have your greasers and you'll have your bouncers but hopefully and probably you'll be safe... its your instructors job to make sure of that.

And that's one thing you may be forgetting about. When your MSFS'ing I assume its on your own. You're going to have a trained professional leading you along the way, working on your weaknesses and lauding your strengths until you ARE a safe pilot. Nobody (with a few exceptions I'm sure) starts flight training and right out of the box nails everything perfectly. Some will be great at radios but weak on landings, or great at landings but not so hot on dead reckoning and navigation, others may have trouble remembering some of the book stuff... its the flight schools job and your instructors duty to work on the weaknesses until they aren't there anymore. And if you're not worried about soloing in 15 hours and getting a PPL in 40 but just learning to fly and to fly right.... you WILL get there.

So, don't be so hard on yourself. Enjoy MSFS and keep honing your skills, and when you have the funds and the time available research your local flight schools and find one that suits you and is reputable. And find an instructor who genuinely cares about your flight path and isn't just going thru the motions. And keep us updated and good luck.  
Here Here for Severe Clear!
 
Fly2HMO
Posts: 7207
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2004 12:14 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sat Aug 07, 2010 10:38 pm

Might I add MSFS is a great tool for learning instrument stuff HOWEVER it can also create very bad habits. Such as instrument fixation.

When you're flying the real thing in VFR you rarely ever look at the instruments. You're supposed to have your eyes looking out as much as possible. In fact, when training for your PPL your CFI will cover up the instruments to prevent you from staring at them. You really have no business staring at your instrument panel when its clear-in-a-million-miles outside. It's dangerous, specially in crowded airspace.

[Edited 2010-08-07 15:39:32]
 
contrails15
Posts: 371
Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2008 9:46 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sat Aug 07, 2010 11:13 pm

I've asked a couple pilots that fly for my airline what they think of MSFS and they can't believe how real the software has gotten. Some say it rivals the sims that they use for training minus the motion senors of course.

Interesting question btw, I've thought about asking this myself.
Giants football!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
Fly2HMO
Posts: 7207
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2004 12:14 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sat Aug 07, 2010 11:19 pm

Quoting contrails15 (Reply 6):
Some say it rivals the sims that they use for training minus the motion senors of course.

I have 28 hours logged in 737NG/Classic Level D sims. And yes MSFS definitely has them beat in terms of graphics. The one sim I flew was months old and the latest and greatest model from CAE but the graphics were crap. Reminded me of FS2000.

In reality airlines don't need fancy graphics for training as all the training is done in IFR so all you're going to see is a white screen anyways right up until you land.
 
PGNCS
Posts: 2249
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2007 5:07 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:26 am

I can't say definitively because I don't own and have never used a home computer-based (PC or Mac) flight simulation program of any type. While I am sure these programs are graphically very good, I doubt that the feedback and sensory saturation are anywhere comparable to a real aircraft (or even a real simulator,) so, in a nutshell, just because you struggle with certain tasks in a PC flight simulation program does not mean that you would necessarily have difficulties as a real pilot. I'm sorry that I can't be of more help, but I personally wouldn't be bothered by it if I were you.
 
cerretaman
Posts: 73
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2005 3:08 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:31 am

Lowering your self esteem over a video game?

Try landing without any wind and see if that helps with drifting from the runway centerline.
u mad cause i'm stylin' on you?
 
tarzanboy
Topic Author
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2003 8:18 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:43 am

Quoting Fly2HMO: However, you lost any right to an apology from me for giving such a condescending and ridiculous and down right laughable psycho-analysis of myself.

Well put it this way, a long time ago I was blessed with the power to foretell someone's future, so my prediction could well be true! You never know!

PGNCS - thanks buddy.
 
etherealsky
Posts: 211
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:13 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 1:48 am

Quoting tarzanboy (Thread starter):
I ask because sometimes I can't seem to land proper and landing short of the runway and on the side of the runway etc. and this is lowering my esteem because I think if I suck at this level maybe one day I would suck at the real thing

Just a hunch, but I assume you probably haven't had formal flight training either, so don't sweat it. Since you mention airline pilots I assume you're trying to fly airliners in the simulator, and one thing you should know is that a big portion of airline flying (well.. all flying, really - but especially with the big metal) is procedures, procedures, procedures, and if you have never been trained in using those procedures, don't expect to be very good   (When I say 'procedures' I also mean things like V-speeds, climb/descent/approach profiles, power settings, flap & gear configurations, etc.)

[Edited 2010-08-08 09:07:03 by ManuCH]
"And that's why you always leave a note..."
 
rolypolyman
Posts: 85
Joined: Thu Mar 12, 2009 10:53 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 1:50 am

Quoting contrails15 (Reply 6):
I've asked a couple pilots that fly for my airline what they think of MSFS and they can't believe how real the software has gotten. Some say it rivals the sims that they use for training minus the motion sensors of course.

On the other hand, there's a pretty fair number of MSFS airplanes which have very poor flight models. Granted, some of the airplanes are purposely designed to be accurate representations, but there's also some very sloppy ones out there, and what's not helping this is the widespread emphasis on paint kits and moving external parts. I think this is partly why MSFS gets mixed reviews from those who actually fly the heavy metal, and the specifics of variability in flight model accuracy really doesn't get much attention. But this is arguably an important part of a simulated IFR approach -- having a model that doesn't get erratic once the flaps come out.

[Edited 2010-08-07 18:52:14]
 
26point2
Posts: 809
Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2010 6:01 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 2:23 am

I only remember MSFS from the early 80s (v1.0?) Something about an SR-71 and landing at SMO?

I've flown jets with a few young bucks who might be good at FSMS but are bad pilots in the real world.
 
User avatar
Moose135
Posts: 2554
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 11:27 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 2:34 am

I'm not an airline pilot, but I do have about 1,000 hours in the KC-135 and other jets, plus some light single/twin time. I can't land MSFS to save my life (so to speak) Not that I play with it that much, but I just can't land the silly thing - there's no peripheral vision, no feel for what is happening, just that little screen in front of you...I mostly just fly around for a bit, then if I can plant it somewhere on the airfield, I consider it a good day.
KC-135 - Passing gas and taking names!
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17049
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 2:47 am

I'm not a pilot, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

Seriously though, I have done some MSFS and also been in a full motion sim. While the graphics in MSFS beat the 1980s vintage 767 sim hands down, that didn't matter one bit. The full range of vision and the motion made the full motion far more intuitive. MSFS has no feedback. All you have is a 2D representation of a 3D space on a screen that only takes up a very small part of your vision.

The following tips are for MSFS. Whether they are applicable for real flying I don't know:
- Practice practice practice.
- Learn to keep track of speed and altitude. Start by practicing in the Cessna trying to keep altitude within +/- 50 feet and speed within +/- 5 knots. Then keep speed even in a descent at a fixed rate. It is not as easy as it sounds in MSFS, but once you have mastered those skills you will notice that your accuracy increases dramatically.
- Keep corrections small and smooth.
- Keep your eyes way down the runway, not at the touchdown point.
- On approach, use power to control descent rate (altitude) and pitch to control speed.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
 
AKviator
Posts: 88
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 8:19 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 4:32 am

Quoting tarzanboy (Thread starter):
I ask because sometimes I can't seem to land proper and landing short of the runway and on the side of the runway etc.

I got my PPL in a Cessna 172, and I've flown quite a bit on FSX in a 172, and I have to say landing the real thing is easier (after tons of practice, of course). I cant split the centerline or grease one in on FSX to save my life.

Quoting tarzanboy (Thread starter):
this is lowering my esteem because I think if I suck at this level maybe one day I would suck at the real thing.

Not true at all bro. Despite Microsoft's best efforts, there is still quite a difference between the game and the real thing. FSX is good for a few things, such as radio procedure familiarization and cockpit familiarization, navigation practice (sans GPS), or instrument procedures. However I dont think landing is something you can really prepare for in MSFS.

And what types of planes are these botched landings in?
 
tu204
Posts: 1409
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 12:36 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:15 pm

Personally I find it easier to pilot an aircraft in real life vs. MS Flight sim. Unless you have one of those "home cocpits" set up, you do not see the full cocpit. Plus you feel the controls much better.
I do not dream about movie stars, they must dream about me for I am real and they are not. - Alexander Popov
 
Delta2058
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 1:23 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 3:58 pm

As a former real world pilot and current FSX enthusiast, I think the biggest challenge in simulation is the limited view of your surroundings. In a real aircraft, looking at the runway line up while turning base to final is natural while trying to change your point of view in the sim is kind of disorienting.

I recommend joining a virtual airline. Lots of good training opportunities with realistic goals to work on. Keeps things from getting boring.

I think FSX is worth installing if you have a high end computer. I have 8MB RAM, dual video cards and it runs FSX smoothly without a hitch. I have heard horror stories trying to run it on a slow machine.
Smooth seas do not make skilled sailors.
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17049
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 4:05 pm

Quoting AirstairFear (Reply 23):

Is FSX any better in terms of aircraft _systems_? I was horrified when I bought FS2000 back in the day, selected the 734, then attempted to start the APU. _Nothing_ worked. Couldn't even SEE the overhead panels no matter what I did. And engine start, forget it. Ctrl+E or whatever was the only way. Certainly forget about isolation valves and busses and all the other goodies; they just weren't there to be operated.

Don't know about FSX but in general MSFS has never been one for nitpicky systems realism. The autopilot on the 734 was a disaster in FS8. If you want realism, pay for one of the excellent add-on packages, for example the aforementioned ones from PDMG. http://www.precisionmanuals.com/
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
 
Delta2058
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 1:23 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 4:12 pm

Yes, I second Starlionblue. PDMG sims are excellent. I also enjoy Just Flight sims. Both have many adjustments to vary realism versus fun flying. Of course, the more detail, the more computer power you will need.
Smooth seas do not make skilled sailors.
 
pilotpip
Posts: 2820
Joined: Fri Sep 19, 2003 3:26 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 6:10 pm

Of course the real thing is goign to be "easier" once you know what you're doing. You have far more visual cues from your peripheral vision as well as ground effect and the "seat of your pants" feel. You have none of that on flight simulator programs.

I could always tell when a new student had been using flight simulator to "practice" at home. Usually resulted in lots of time holding a checklist over the instruments and forcing them to look outside since it was VFR flight.
DMI
 
Arniepie
Posts: 1428
Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2005 11:00 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun Aug 08, 2010 8:59 pm

Quoting Delta2058 (Reply 15):
I think FSX is worth installing if you have a high end computer. I have 8MB RAM, dual video cards and it runs FSX smoothly without a hitch. I have heard horror stories trying to run it on a slow machine.

I think you slightly miscalculated your RAM there, 8MB isn't even enough for a cellphone these days , let alone MSFS,
I guess you meant Gigs, which is surely impressive.

BTW, pity WILCO doesn't comment anymore since he is both experienced on real Small and wide-body flying and an enthusiastic MSFS user, if my memory serves me right there have been some topics already on this issue and I believe he said it was mostly the lack of visual realism that could make it harder to land properly in the simulation vs the real world experience.

Also I've heard over and over again that people who use MSFS a lot before making a real first flight specifically have problems with flaring and have a tendency to push the yoke down at landing resulting in a nose-wheel first landing, all bad habits that have to be untrained.
[edit post]
 
User avatar
Jetlagged
Posts: 2562
Joined: Sun Jan 23, 2005 3:00 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 12:09 am

Quoting arniepie (Reply 19):
Also I've heard over and over again that people who use MSFS a lot before making a real first flight specifically have problems with flaring and have a tendency to push the yoke down at landing resulting in a nose-wheel first landing, all bad habits that have to be untrained.

That isn't a problem with MSFS per se, just bad habits developing due to being self taught.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
DashTrash
Posts: 1266
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2006 8:44 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:18 am

I know guys who suck at flying even full motion simulators, but fly the real airplane perfectly. There's a huge difference between any kind of simulated airplane, especially MSFS, and the real deal. Don't sweat it, and enjoy the Microsoft tool / toy. Just remember it has no bearing as to your potential performance in a real airplane.
 
Alias1024
Posts: 2223
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 11:13 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:33 am

Quoting DashTrash (Reply 21):
Just remember it has no bearing as to your potential performance in a real airplane.

  
I'm terrible at PC flight simulators. I'm lucky if I even get it on the runway during landing.

Microsoft flight simulator has no ability to predict how you will perform in an airplane. That's good for myself and my passengers.  
It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems with just potatoes.
 
m11stephen
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2008 12:16 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 2:32 am

My uncle, a DL captain, totally botches landings on MSFS but is a great pilot in real life. Don't let a video game discourage you.
My opinions, statements, etc. are my own and do not have any association with those of any employer.
 
Inbound
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2001 7:59 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:22 am

I have just over 3000 hours of real flying. dash8 and 738 rated. I've greased that jet in places like 13L canarsie JFK, and 10 at SXM......but I've never had a good landing in MSFS. I still use a MS sidewinder joystick and I flare too high, and usually off centre, even at my own base, POS.

Don't let it get to you. a real plane will always be, a real plane.
Maintain own separation with terrain!
 
iairallie
Posts: 2326
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 5:42 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:18 am

I'm only a ppl. I suck at microsoft flight sim but I am a decent pilot (I passed my checkride  ) in real life. I think the reason why is software and hardware don't give me enough realistic sensory cues auditory, visual, somatic to accurately replicate the real experience. I can take off and instrument fly in the microsoft flight sim but I can't land it for the life of me even though I've landed every real flight I've flown  

[Edited 2010-08-09 01:26:44]
Enough about flying lets talk about me!
 
tom355uk
Posts: 168
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 11:34 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 9:56 am

Like the guys have already said, the lack of tactile visual feedback is the most difficult thing with MSFS. I have found the best thing to do to try and improve landings, is as follows:

- Use the Piper Cub most of the time, as its comparative lack of instruments will force you to look outside the aircraft for clues as to your gait, and get used to what the 'picture' should look like. It is also very simple to trim for a certain speed. Sometimes I will fail the altimeter and ASI to increase the reliance on looking outside.

- ALWAYS use the virtual cockpit, the 2d panel is pointless for anything but zero visibility instrument procedures.

- Make sure the eyepoint is set accurately, you will probably have to move and zoom about a bit to get it right. Once you have this, set a button to snap back to this viewpoint instantly, it makes it easier than trying to do so with a hat switch while banking on base.

- Try to get a decent yoke and throttle quadrant along with some rudder pedals. Most joysticks have a big 'dead' zone around neutral where you actually need the movement most, and the built in throttle controls typically offer too little range to be sensitive enough. Don't even get me started on twisting the stick for rudder control.....

- Practice, Practice, Practice. Stick with the Cub and one airport (preferably one you know well). Don't think after 2 or 3 good landings with the Cub you can jump into the 737 (which is pants anyway!). There is an extremely good book on the subject called 'FSX for Real World Pilots', it is the best £13 I've ever spent!

However, nothing compares to the real thing!!!

Hope this helps!  

[Edited 2010-08-09 03:18:31]
on Twitter @tombeckett2285
 
User avatar
longhauler
Posts: 4941
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:00 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 2:18 pm

Just like any hand-to-eye co-ordinated exercise, MSFS gets better with practise, but it is very little like flying a real aircraft.

Conversely, I took my nephew with thousands of hours at MSFS into an A320 full motion flight simulator (we are allowed to use them for practice, when they are free) and he couldn't land it when hand flying. Flying was easily mastered, but landing was just about impossible for him!

It made me think of the discussions on here about whether a MSFS "master" could land a commercial airliner in an emergency. My opinion, is no.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
User avatar
Jetlagged
Posts: 2562
Joined: Sun Jan 23, 2005 3:00 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:20 pm

Having done a little research, I suspect the main problem with landing realism in MSFS, apart from no motion and limited vision, is likely to be the simplified ground effects simulation. MSFS only simulates ground effect on lift.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
bri2k1
Posts: 952
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 4:13 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:54 pm

I've owned every version of MSFS since 1987, I have a PPL, am checked out in every one of my club's single engine models from Cessna, Piper, and Diamond, and before 9/11 had accumulated about 12 hours in the UA Level D sims at Stapleton. I've also flown several stationary simulators, including AATDs, during instrument training.

The hardest part of flying MSFS for me is the lack of visual reference. These days, I use a yoke with a POV hat that lets you change the view as if you were moving your head around. It's still not anything close to the real thing. It's nearly impossible to judge height above the runway, rate of descent, position from which to start a base leg...

Many non-pilots may not realize that landings are almost always dependent on some level of visibility. Even in the worst conditions, there are minimum visibility and ceiling limitations for almost every approach, and the actual flare and landing are almost always conducted based on visual cues. There are myriad threads on this board about CatIIIc, autoland, and the like, but the bottom line is that almost every flight is landed visually. Instrument approaches are intended to safely get a flight out of instrument conditions and into visible conditions from which a landing can be made. Sometimes this is as little as 200 feet above and a half mile from the touch down zone of a runway (or less), but the landing proceeds visually from there.

The second hardest part about flying simulators is the lack of realism. Someone has mentioned control inputs, and this is true, although not necessarily the hardest part for me. Different planes have different required control forces and deflections, and the bottom line is that you make whatever control input is necessary to achieve the desired result. I think the biggest shortcoming is the curious laws of physics that apply in MSFS-land. For example, rates of acceleration and climb aren't anything close to what exist in the real world on any of the default models. The disparity gets worse as you get farther from standard temperatures and pressures.

The lack of motion contributes to the difficulty, and makes flying the simulated helicopters accurately an exceptional challenge. However, when the control forces and deflections, instrument indications, and laws of physics behave normally, simulators can be flown well without motion. I've been flying the UA 777 full-motion simulator through simulated heavy turbulence and had to stop the motion to let someone out of the simulator that was getting motion sickness. I was able to continue the flight and land, hand flying, without the aid of the simulator's motion.

Most CFI's tend to agree that home sims are most useful for procedures, such as practicing holds, or using radials to navigate. Takeoff, landing, and even basic visual procedures like turns around a point are probably much better learned in an actual airplane, and practicing them at home can be fun but not particularly useful. Either way, there are lots of professional pilots who can't land MSFS, and lots of proficient MSFS pilots who can't land real airplanes. There are plenty in the middle, too, so none of this should discourage your interest in or pursuit of aviation.
Position and hold
 
User avatar
Jetlagged
Posts: 2562
Joined: Sun Jan 23, 2005 3:00 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:08 pm

Quoting bri2k1 (Reply 29):
The second hardest part about flying simulators is the lack of realism. Someone has mentioned control inputs, and this is true, although not necessarily the hardest part for me. Different planes have different required control forces and deflections, and the bottom line is that you make whatever control input is necessary to achieve the desired result. I think the biggest shortcoming is the curious laws of physics that apply in MSFS-land. For example, rates of acceleration and climb aren't anything close to what exist in the real world on any of the default models. The disparity gets worse as you get farther from standard temperatures and pressures.

The big problem with controls is that you can easily apply maximum deflection in MSFS, where in a real sim or aircraft the opposing control forces would be very heavy. This tends to make MSFS sims feel far too lively. Another thing is the default set up of control inputs. These include a massive deadband and very slow surface responses. Reduce the deadband and increase the response and the situation is greatly improved.

MSFS laws of physics are reasonable enough and well designed add-on aircraft (not the default aircraft of course) don't exhibit undue climb rates or acceleration in my experience.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
HaveBlue
Posts: 2104
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2004 3:01 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:15 pm

Quoting Fly2HMO (Reply 1):
Get an eye exam.
Quoting bri2k1 (Reply 29):
Either way, there are lots of professional pilots who can't land MSFS, and lots of proficient MSFS pilots who can't land real airplanes. There are plenty in the middle, too, so none of this should discourage your interest in or pursuit of aviation.

Dead on correct!
Here Here for Severe Clear!
 
MrFord
Posts: 136
Joined: Mon Jan 15, 2001 9:03 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:44 pm

I've been flying on FS for quite a while, just not that regularly, and I only got 9 hours on my PPL, but a couple thing I found out:

- Having flown in FS helped me knowing my way around in the real C172 i.e. not getting lost with all the instruments
- It helped understanding the basic concepts : pull up/down, flaps, speeds, flare

Then I flew a couple time (keep in mind, very little hours compared to lots of people here), and learned about:
- Flying by the seat of your pants (physical/aural feedback) which makes it a LOT easier than scanning the instruments like crazy to detect any change in pitch/roll/speed and most of the time ending overcorrecting it
- Dept of field vision, and surround vision. Makes it easier to situate yourself
- How neutral and relatively speaking, stable, a 172 is
- Trim and rudder, 2 things I almost never used in FS

It's only a quick list, but the best way to help with the comparison is if you put racing game drivers on the computer in a real car, and vice versa. There's lots of gamers who can nail a Grand Turismo circuit, and I'm for one having trouble to do even a lap. But they learned how to work with the game, and know how it reacts. Put them in a real car, even a small econobox, and they will probably be scared to push it past 70, because they're not used to the feedback and the sensation of speed, and they won't know how to feel the car and drive it without even looking at the speedometer.

I know for a fact that I tend to suck a lot more in FS now that I've got just a couple hours flying the real thing, because now I know what's missing, and I'm looking for clues like feedback, peripheral vision and inertia in the controls, and end up panning around bouncing around like crazy. But there are a couple very good paywares, like the LevelD 767, and hardware, like TrackIR, tht are supposed to help with the vision problem. It's not perfect, but it helps shrinking the gap.
"For radar identification throw your jumpseat rider out the window."
 
413X3
Posts: 171
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:59 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon Aug 09, 2010 10:42 pm

the biggest help in flight simulator is to have a good monitor, a good computer, and a yoke and pedals. Flying in the virtual cockpit zoomed out with a 24" monitor gives you enough of a sense of "being there" that landing starts to become second nature. It really helps translate into the real world. Especially if you fly something like a PMDG airplane, or an Eaglesoft jet, Level-D 767 even. You learn the procedures, where everything is located in the cockpit, programming and flying, so when you hop in the real thing, you just need to practice and translate that knowledge to the real world. It makes you a better pilot in the end because you never get enough sim time to mess around enough to feel comfortable on a new plane.
 
etherealsky
Posts: 211
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:13 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:12 am

Quoting longhauler (Reply 27):
It made me think of the discussions on here about whether a MSFS "master" could land a commercial airliner in an emergency. My opinion, is no.

Ahhh, not this debate again!   
"And that's why you always leave a note..."
 
bri2k1
Posts: 952
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 4:13 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:53 pm

Quoting jetlagged (Reply 30):
MSFS laws of physics are reasonable enough

I guess my biggest gripe is the performance penalty it applies for altitude. Jets don't seem to be penalized, I can still launch the 737 or A320 from a 5,000 foot strip on a 95 degree day at 6,000 MSL. Any piston model though, and on a sub-freezing day I can barely get 250FPM in a trimmed and coordinated climb out of the same airport.
Position and hold
 
User avatar
Jetlagged
Posts: 2562
Joined: Sun Jan 23, 2005 3:00 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Tue Aug 10, 2010 3:07 pm

Quoting bri2k1 (Reply 35):
I guess my biggest gripe is the performance penalty it applies for altitude. Jets don't seem to be penalized, I can still launch the 737 or A320 from a 5,000 foot strip on a 95 degree day at 6,000 MSL. Any piston model though, and on a sub-freezing day I can barely get 250FPM in a trimmed and coordinated climb out of the same airport.

Engine modelling in MSFS is poor, I agree, especially with the default sims which are best avoided. Things get much better with good quality add-ons, which optimise things to get the best compromise. Some completely bypass the built-in engine models.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
Goldenshield
Posts: 5005
Joined: Sun Jan 14, 2001 3:45 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Tue Aug 10, 2010 3:45 pm

Having a decent control setup works wonders, too. Currently, I have a joystick with a twist grip (Z-axis, or yaw) that I've been trying to get used to, and probably never will entirely. I have rudder pedals, but with an awkward desk setup, it'll be hard to install them.

That said, I recently bought Condor Soaring Sim, and while I can maintain the towplane perfectly and land safely in a good crosswind in the real world, doing so in the sim takes a bit of work thanks to the sensitivity of the rudder axis, coupled with the awkward twist grip. All in all, the difference in handling between the (sometimes limited) computer hardware versus real aircraft controls can sometimes be alarming. This is why Level D sims have to be as accurate as possible so that they handle like the real thing would.
Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun.
 
tarzanboy
Topic Author
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2003 8:18 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Tue Aug 10, 2010 7:40 pm

FLY2HMO thanks for your replies.
 
KELPkid
Posts: 5247
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2005 5:33 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Tue Aug 10, 2010 7:55 pm

Quick confession here: I used MSFS extensively while I was getting my instrument ticket to practice things like hold entries, NDB approaches, and partial panel (and yes, I stuck post-its to my poor flat panel LCD display   ). I aced the NDB approach on my check ride  

It did hurt me, though...I got really profecient at MSFS ILS approaches. The one thing that screwed me up when I took that into the real airplane was this: no simulator on a PC could ever duplicate the effects of things like P-factor and corkscrew effect in the real airplane. You cannot fly a Cessna 172 feet flat during an ILS   Way too much happening in the real airplane...

On a side note: the 182 is a dream instrument ship compared to the 172. Way less squirrely about the yaw axis, and you have this cool feature called rudder trim  
Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
 
freeze3192
Posts: 142
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2006 10:04 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Wed Aug 11, 2010 4:50 am

I couldn't land much less find the airport when I first started flying on Flight Sim.

I'm now a CFI/CFII/MEI and my skills have somewhat improved.

Don't let the game trick you into believing that it can judge how good of a pilot you can be.
"A passenger bets his life that his pilot is a worthy heir to an ancient tradition of excellence and professionalism."
 
bri2k1
Posts: 952
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 4:13 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Wed Aug 11, 2010 1:13 pm

Here's a fun challenge: anyone who has gotten pretty good at MSFS, try the "easter egg" flight sim in Google Earth. When I first learned MSFS, I didn't have a joystick and had to use the numeric keypad. That helped a lot for controlling the flight path, but finding the airport was no easier.

I guess it's kind of like taking a high-time fixed wing pilot and giving him a 30-minute helicopter lesson as a "gift."
Position and hold
 
xero9
Posts: 124
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 3:12 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Thu Aug 12, 2010 4:32 am

I played MSFS a LOT. I was pretty good at landing it too, by the end. After I started working towards my PPL, I can't stand it any more. Landing a real plane is much easier (or at least my little C150). One thing that annoys me about MSFS now is when I'm on my approach and I'm a little low, I add a touch power power. If I'm a little fast, I put the nose up a bit. In MSFS if you add power you speed up, and if you point your nose up, you climb. Ugh,, now following that simple flight characteristic has killed it for me. That, and the rudder control to me is bad (I use just the keyboard, that might make a difference).

Don't let it discourage you, and if you do ever start flight training, don't be discouraged if you have difficulty landing the real thing at first. Trust me, we've all been there done that and there is a bit of a steep learning curve on that.
 
User avatar
cpd
Posts: 4548
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 4:46 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:04 am

Quoting contrails15 (Reply 3):
I've asked a couple pilots that fly for my airline what they think of MSFS and they can't believe how real the software has gotten. Some say it rivals the sims that they use for training minus the motion senors of course.

Now of course, the latest versions of Flight Simulator (particularly X) are incredibly real looking. And with top-notch advanced plane addons (thinking PMDG 747X and MD-11, or the FSL Concorde) it can also be very realistic in terms of flying the plane too.

I'd even go so far as saying that in some ways, it might be harder than the real thing as you don't have the ease of looking about and vision out side. Flight Simulator quite seriously constrains your view outside unless you have a proper projector/simulator setup, which some people do have (and spend hundreds of thousands of dollars creating it).

Kai-tak is always tricky in Flight Simulator since you don't have the ability to easily move around to get a better view of where you are turning/landing.

Quoting etherealsky (Reply 34):
Ahhh, not this debate again!

For me - I'd say that it might help (say one of the advanced sims) in knowing where to look to find switches/controls and understand what instruments are saying. But apart from that, no - it probably wouldn't help much. And I would never want to have to attempt what you are talking about in the real world - ever!

Quoting jetlagged (Reply 36):
Some completely bypass the built-in engine models.

That's right - and it is what Simconnect is for. The default planes in Flight Simulator really don't show what it is capable of.

[Edited 2010-08-11 23:08:14]
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17049
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:42 am

As mentioned above, MSFS + a good add-on + good controls is a very good modeled of real world aircraft behavior.

I think, however, that the issue with landing a real plane in an emergency is more concerned with training than with simulation. That is, if we take a hypothetical guy and train him in MSFS + a good add-on, with all his training otherwise exactly as it would have been at a real flight academy, he might stand a chance. If it is just a hobby flight simmer, not so much.

Rigorous training in check lists, procedures, systems, emergencies, communications and another few zillion things is what makes an airline pilot superior to your average flight simmer. It is not primarily the quality of the simulation that makes the difference. Otherwise the 727 guys who trained with 70s vintage line graphics (and still do!) would be doing quite badly in the real world.

Quoting cpd (Reply 43):
The default planes in Flight Simulator really don't show what it is capable of.

This is key.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
 
wn700driver
Posts: 1475
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2001 10:55 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Fri Aug 13, 2010 5:32 am

Off topic here, but...



I just downloaded a Star Trek shuttle (some TOS model no doubt...) This thing has a ridiculous amount of speed, and can easily get to FL 50,000. I can't comment of realism, since no such animal exists in real life. But that thing sure a load of fun to do "ballistic" runs between any 1,000ish mi city pair. Try it sometime.

As for the topic... Dude, if you can't land a 744, one engined, one-handed, full of fuel, at DCA, on the 2d panel, you probably just suck at everything there is to suck at in real life. Sorry man, but there it is...   

Seriously though, I've a PPL with about 400-odd hours, and a few other attachments as well. Suffice it to say, you shouldn't have a problem. I don't suck, per se, at MSFS. But that has more to with the fact that with a face like mine, you'd spend a lot of nights home alone with nothing better to do too.  

Good Luck...
Base not your happiness on the deeds of others, for what is given can be taken away. No Hope = No Fear
 
29erUSA187
Posts: 1277
Joined: Mon Apr 14, 2014 11:34 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun May 10, 2015 4:48 pm

Dont take my word for any of this, because I have like 4-5 hours to my name.

However, I have FSX on my home computer, and landing the Cessna 172 was awfully hard on the sim, do to controls and lag, plus some other factors. When I tried my first landing in real life, in a Cessna 172, it was actually easier than the sim! (given it was MYF on a clear day). I had always been stressed I wouldn't be adept at landing a real A/C, but I found out its a totally different ball game. FSX controls suck, I use it for fun. Period.
 
FlightShadow
Posts: 1060
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2005 4:43 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Sun May 10, 2015 5:26 pm

Kelsey Grammer answered OP's question in Down Periscope: "People don't talk about 'brave men and their proud simulators.'"

From personal experience, I flew a lot of flight sims between ages 8-17, including FSX. Some were more realistic than others. None of that PC flight sim time helped me, not one bit, when it came to learning actual stick-and-rudder skills in an airplane.

I have had some limited success with practicing a few instrument techniques in MSFS, but...it's just not the same. Clouds aren't "bumpy" when you fly through them on the computer, etc.

However, once I got halfway decent at landing real-world C172s, I was finally able to get good landings in flight sim 172s.
"When the tide goes out, you can tell who was skinnydipping."
 
rfields5421
Posts: 5545
Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:45 am

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon May 11, 2015 12:20 am

I loved MSFS - but landing is the worst part and most unrealistic part.

As mentioned above - the feedback from your body, your peripheral vision, the sound of aircraft and the wind, etc - all work together to help land a real small aircraft.

And MSFS simulates none of those critical sensory inputs.

My flight instructor encouraged me to repeat my lessons in FS - but specifically told me NOT to practice landings or takeoffs in FS.

I'm not a professional pilot, never will be with my vision.

Flying a real aircraft alone is the greatest thrill in the world, out of bed.

MSFS can be pretty cool, fantastic even. I could certainly never attempt to fly a real aircraft into Lukla or Couchevel - but I can in MSFS.

Another point my flight instructor trained me on - look out the front window. Don't stare at the instruments. MSFS can be better for focusing on IFR than VFR.
 
mandala499
Posts: 6458
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2001 8:47 pm

RE: Are There Any Airline Pilots Who Suck At This?

Mon May 11, 2015 3:17 am

Quoting tarzanboy (Thread starter):
I ask because sometimes I can't seem to land proper and landing short of the runway and on the side of the runway etc. and this is lowering my esteem because I think if I suck at this level maybe one day I would suck at the real thing.

Lots of real pilots suck at landing on MSFS... lots of MSFS pilots suck at even landing a full motion simulator.
Use the MSFS for IFR navigation... they are really good tools for it, especially with online winds. Get some good models addons with accurate performance numbers (handling is a different card), to get your flight planning up to scratch. Even better, get good scenery addons that allow for cross country VFR navigation.
I did a VFR tour of Java on MAAM DC-3s, Carenado T-34s and Hovercontrol Bell 412s... and of course the default C172 and C182. Had Wilco E170/190 and the LDS 767, the latter is an excellent tool for flight planning and performance planning, used it with a real 767(GE) FPPM...

These "skills" end up being useful as a safety troubleshooter in my previous job when assessing routes, route planning, even safety audits and mitigation measures.

MSFS is useful from gear up to gear down... and useless from gear down to gear up in terms of handling. :p
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: a320211, Baidu [Spider] and 27 guests