Wednesday, 15 January 2020

Anthony's progress, Boeing delivered a 737-200, being transformed bit by bit into a 737-800

Cockpit Arrives

A bit of work to do on delivery

Before surgery

Taking shape - FO Console, MCP and Pedestal ready to install
Forward overhead as real as it gets, rear one in the post

Polishing the glass ready in preparation for collimated display

Monday, 13 January 2020

Top-Up Your Tip-Top Zibo

Here's a super little user friendly Zibo-centric utility which promises to keep your precious Zibo installation in a fit, ready to roll, updated, and backed-up state.

Unsurprisingly, it is called "ZIBO Updater", and just like the Zibo itself, this is a free download with optional donations for X-Plane.Org creator Slavbass.

Tuesday, 7 January 2020

Gull Winged Robins Going Cheep...

Just Flight recently released two high-yield yet low-price add-ons in the form of a Robin DR400 for FSX/P3D and X-Plane 11.

The Robin DR400 has been manufactured in France by Avions Robin since 1972. It sports a wooden frame with fabric wings which today is an unsual construction method given our propensity for hightech materials, yet its unique design has allowed it to stand the test of time. It is fast, reliable, and has a proven track record for being an excellent trainer and workhorse, but please don't leave yours out in the rain! 

Let us be clear about these aircraft insofar as they are fully fledged Just Flight products of the highest calibre with phenomenal attention to detail, and have similar feature sets as Just Flight's other concurrent GA models, yet they cost a mere £9.99.

According to Just Flight, the low price is their way of thanking their loyal customers for their continued support over the many busy years that Just Flight have been developing their high quality products for the FS market.

The Robin DR400's are fully loaded with gadgets, gizmos, and avionics galore including the following for both platforms...

  • Accurately modelled Robin DR400-180 Regent with 4096x4096 textures with bump and specular mapping plus PBR
  • Ten international liveries
  • Numerous animations including sliding canopy, luggage door and engine exhaust
  • Realistic modelling and texturing of the distinctive cranked wings
  • Ground equipment including chocks and tie-downs
  • A truly 3D virtual cockpit right down to accurately modelled seat belts and screw heads - every instrument is constructed fully in 3D with smooth animations
  • Authentic fuel and RPM gauge needle ‘wobble’
  • Dimmable instrument lighting (P3D V4+ only)
  • Interactive checklists for every stage of flight including engine start
  • Panel state system which automatically saves the panel state whenever a flight is saved and reload
  • Aircraft configuration system that will allow you to choose between 'cold & dark' or 'ready for take-off'
  • Fully functional and comprehensive IFR-capable avionics fit:
    •  GMA 340 audio selector
    •  GNS 430 GPS unit
    •  KY 97 COM 2 radio with frequency database
    •  KN 64 DME; can display information from NAV1 or its own receiver (NAV3)
    •  GTX 330 transponder with flight timers, altitude information and monitoring
    •  KR 85 ADF with ADF/ANT/BFO modes
    •  S-TEC 55 autopilot
  • Flight computer panel including fuel burn, endurance, speed and wind data
  • Flight1 GTN and GNS integration in the virtual cockpit
  • Custom-coded fuel system, including the optional automatic fuel tank switching
  • Custom-coded electrical system with functional circuit breakers
  • Functioning carburettor and auxiliary fuel tank transfer controls
  • Dedicated interactive engine pop-up window displaying values such as fuel tank weights and imbalance, fuel pressure, oil pressure, oil temperature, battery charge (with quick charge option), and information about spark plug fouling and vapour lock condition
  • Simulated vapour lock condition, with warning pop-up and suggested actions
  • Simulated spark plug fouling condition, with indication of percentage of fouling
  • Custom external light logic with custom strobe light pattern and custom light halos for added realism

Sunday, 5 January 2020

Where Tigers and Moths Meet...

Aeroworx have just presented the grateful X-Plane community with a memorable New Year's gift, and wow, what a superb way to begin a new decade it is too!

This beautifully crafted freeware de Havilland DH82A Tiger Moth II has been created by Johan van Wyk & Fred Stegmann for X-Plane 11, and has consent from Ant’s Airplanes to use the textures from his freeware model of the same.

So head on over to the X-Plane.Org in order to collect your very own strutted string bag of a machine so that you too can walk with a genuinely windswept pilot swagger!

Sunday, 22 December 2019

Flight Deck Films: Sources of Inspiration

On my shelves can be found a small selection of cockpit based DVD films, and on my PC live another handful of "from the flight deck" productions.

Whilst I may not often get the chance to watch my DVD collection, it is a great deal easier watching videos on-the-go thanks to downloaded videos. For instance, downloads from Just Planes can be streamed or copied onto your mobile device and watched via an app, with the consequence that my iPhone carries another stash of flight deck film action!

Portable selections of informative and well filmed cockpit footage can transform any plain train or automobile journey into something considerably more palatable. I suspect that each viewer will take away what interests them the most from their own viewing, as it is clear to me that a great deal can be gleaned from watching professional pilots operating at their best by following their disciplined procedures from crew briefing to landing.

In addition to this, the many beautiful departures and approaches, colourfully diverse airports, countries, featured aircraft types, and inspiring scenery play a very big part when it comes to inspiring me where and what I should next fly.

Buying these productions can be a pricey business, unless of course one waits for the many annual sales events. Here's a short list of some flightdeck movie and/or DVD production companies:

Until the next discount season is upon us, a number of excellently produced full flight cockpit movies can be watched for free on YouTube, and with this in mind, here are a few of my very favourite freebie productions.

For those curious enough to ask which is my favourite, I will tell you that it is the oldest production here, and the one listed right at the very bottom. I thoroughly recommend watching the Air New Zealand B737-200 from NZCH to NZQN (NB. parts 1, 2, & 3) as Captain John Peterson (at the time ANZ's B737 fleet manager) is a master of CRM, carrying with him an air of command, authority, and knowledge with effortless ease.

Air Austral B777-200 Reunion to Mayotte

Syphax Airline A319 Djerba to Paris CDG Return

Air Austral B787 Reunion to Mayotte

Azerbaijan B752 Baku to Nakhichevan 

Air Austral B778 Reunion to Mayotte

Azerbaijan B763 Baku to Istanbul

Wamos B744 Madrid to Rostock

Air Baltic B735 Riga to Brussels

Nolinor B732 Montreal to Val D’Or

Lufthansa A350 Munich to Tokyo

Eurowings A330 Cologne to La Romana

Interjet A321 Mexico City to Cancun

Azerbaijan A319 Baku to Ankara

Air Baltic A220 Riga to Heraklion 

Interjet SSJ100 Mexico City to Campeche

Private Dassault Falcon 7X Sao Paolo to Hamburg

Azerbaijan B788 London to Baku

Eurowings A330 Cologne to La Romana

Air New Zealand B732 Christchurch to Queenstown Pt.1, Pt. 2, Pt. 3