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About Tobus

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    Privat Pilot - SEP

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  1. Right, preparing for the next leg to Calcutta (Kolkota). If I remember the book correctly, Fogg and Passepartout travelled to Calcutta from Bombay by train, only to find out the British Traveller guide forgot to mention that the track ends at Kholby (central India) and continues from Alahabad, some 50km north. As I've also been pestered by our COO @Thorsten42 at Andras Meridian VA about taking straight routes instead of the route Fogg took, I'm listening to his ramblings and thought: why not force it for all? As nowadays the tracks run through, I'm going to put this part back to the times of Fogg and disable this railway using the Mighty B-17 Flying Fortress. So route set via VOR's and NDB's, forecast looking ok on winds but foggy as it's apparantly always there this time of year. Crew is now checking all systems and loading the 6000lbs of high explosive presents for the Jabalpur railroad yards.
  2. I have an account at its free and link the pics to any forum.
  3. I find your lack of diary .... disturbing ....
  4. Gentle reminder to all who are attending this cool event to insert and update this logbook.
  5. She's plenty capable of shorter legs too, Gernot. I did a round the world trip with her several years ago doing 2hr max flights, no problem. Lighter on fuel she feels less like a train to fly too ;-) But yes, she is a 2-decker, way ahead of the A380. And it's fuselage construction is a root for every Boeing narrowbody conceived since then.
  6. Retrospective. Now that I've flown both the A2A, Captain of the Ship, Boeing 377 Stratocruiser and Lockheed L-049 Constellation over large distances, a retrospective. The Strat is a beast, pure and simple. Under it's veneer of very refined and sophisticated systems (for that time) lies absolute brute force. In a way it was the Concorde of the 50's: grandly luxurious, powerful, large, grandiose. In that time Boeing was known for building bombers, Lockheed and Douglas for building tranports. The Strat was notoriously expensive to maintain. Fuel consumption of its massive engines was actually low. But oil consumption was high and it's oiling systems very intricate for cooling and lubricating the massive beasts. Link that to the spark plugs tending to foul (56 per engine) and you'd easily lose the aircraft for a day on line-maintenance. United had calculated that it took $2,46 per plane-mile on direct costs and the equivalent on in-direct costs. This made the Strat only profitable from 57 passengers onward. In a normal 100 seat fashion this was ok (although aircraft were nowhere nearly always fully booked), but as it was used on very long ranges it was often decked out as a Sleeper aircraft, losing seats and gaining collapsible bunks for passengers to sleep in beds on their long overnight journey. As a result, the Strat never made a profit. It was used on very long range flights, connecting Tokyo directly to Honolulu, which was an enormous feat at that time. With 56 built and 13 losses, it's safety record was poor even for those days. In military service it fared much better, with hundreds of KC97 in use well into the 70's, as well as it's derivate "Guppy" series. In the sim the engineers office is massive. Back in the day when I bought her, I disliked her soon, as all the actions had to be done by me alone. Totally undoable, I induced more engine fires than ever and I never even landed her. With the CotS addition, things got different, as I now had an interactive flight engineer to do all the hard stuff while I could fly the plane. It's pilot station is clear and understandable, it's greenhouse bomber-like outlook a very good view of surroundings for such a large plane. It flies as a freight train, but feels wonderful at the same time. It's autopilot is very easy to use: set and it keeps course and attitude. Turn a handle for a coordinated turn and turn it back on the correct heading. A secondary trimwheel controls pitch, with an altitude hold switch to keep her where you want her in the vertical. As you'd expect, nothing more than heading and alt hold is available. For naviation it has 2 VOR and 2 ADF radios, linked to a single gauge with 2 RMI needles. Without DME though, so you'll have to triangulate old school from time to time if you get lost a bit. You can also use the navigator station with a moving map giving your location, nose heading, wind drift heading and the RMI's interpolated. More than enough to get you from A to Z via the alfabet without the "progression" in aviation and simming by linking the AP to the magenta line. In my case, I just flew an 8hr flight in her, having a book handy for the low action moments. In hindsight, I don't think I read more than a 30 minute combined period. The Connie was a different beast. It's R3350 engines were less powerful than the R4360's but still easily able to power a large people transporter over long distances. While the R3350's had their issues, they were also way more easy to maintain and operate, resulting in a way less complex setup in the cockpit. This is also the case in the sim. The engines are a bit more finicky in MP vs RPM settings due to the more simple low vs high blower turbos, but other than that way simpler. As the L-049 modelled by A2A is basically a civilionized C69 military transport, not a lot were built. It was soon replaced by a proper civilian version, the L-649 (newer engines, strengthened wings and fuselage, passenger comfort, seat and berthing arrangments and better sound insulation) and L-749 (as L-649 + strengthened landing gear and more fuel). The L-749 was to become the by standard Constellation. Although it had much more graceful lines than the Stratocruiser or other contemporary designs, this did in fact not gain any performance over them. It was, however, very economical in fuel use, very stable in the air for passenger comfort and able to fly much above the weather due to her pressurized hull, although not as high as the Stratocruiser. In the sim the Connie is only available as a CotS version, meaning that you can choose to let some or all systems behind the captain's seat be done by your interactive flight engineer. This, like in the Strat, gives enormous immersion and makes it way more easy to jump into for an average simmer. It's engineers panel is way less complex than the Stratocruiser's and thus give an easier overview. Some gauges are on the pilot's dash instead of the engineer's in the Strat, also meaning that the pilot panel is a bit more difficult. Like the Strat it has 2 VOR and 2 ADF radios, linked to a dual RMI. It also has a DME that can be switched between VOR radios, which is a definate plus over the Stratocruiser. The Connie can also be equipped with freeware and payware GPS with a modern AP. I dislike it, favoring the VOR and old Sperry AP, but it does give an added ease for new simmers. I use the old way of doing things, with the Sperry AP taking most of the work but giving new work back. This is because the Sperry is an attitude manager, not a settings manager. You can trim her off and set the Sperry, but if you trifle with for instance the throttle after that, it will try to keep the plane's attitude at this different power setting, meaning you'll go up or down and have to play with the Sperry settings to equalize. The same goes for manouvering: make a turn via the Sperry and it will invariably change it's attitude and thus also your altitude, which you then have to correct again. It's cockpit layout is more complex due to this. Also it has way less views outside than the greenhouse cockpit of the Stratocruiser. It also flies way more agile than the Strat, feeling almost nimble, fast if needed and still able to land at slow speeds in excess of 60 kts. It's also somewhat easier in take-off, clib, descent and landing, as it has only 3 flaps settings, compared to the Stratocruisers's 8 steps. There's plenty stuff to find on both these amazing aircraft on the A2A webpage and their youtube channel. In the end I think I have no clear favor. As the Strat has such enormous range, I think I'll use her primarily on the very long legs, the rest with the Connie.
  7. Thanks guys. Back at it. Real time 18:15utc, not counting that due to pause Sim time 1950LT. 5600ft, heading 150. Pitch black outside but stable on the approach. Heidi is finishing up the cabin and everybody is back in their seats. 1959LT Turn 240 hold 3700ft until stable on localizer. ATIS reports overcast at 1000ft. A quick glance at AS2016 weathermap .... oh bollocks.... clench the cheeks boys! 2003LT Settled on the localizer, 4000ft. Landing lights extended and lit, nose light and gear light on. No more pics till after landing. 2005LT drop MP, slowly going through flaps 5, flaps 10, flaps 15. 2007LT speed below 150 so safe for gear down. No sign of runway although visibility seems better than foreseen. Fully established on ILS localizer, AP off. 2010LT flaps full down, no runway in sight 2012LT runway in sight, 500ft callout, pitch full fine 2013LT Beautiful landing!! Applause from the back. The moonlight helped me on that one. What a flight! One my longest ones ever I think. Total flight time 7hrs 58min. Full pirep Here. All uninterrupted posts of mine are now merged into large ones for reading purposes.
  8. yes, noticing it now in my flight in The Stratocruiser to Mumbai. Down to 52% oil...
  9. Indeed! 1105utc, 1505LT Passed Bush too far as I was reading a book and getting the kids from school, lunched and back again. Had set the AFK command for pause but apparently it doesn't work on distance. Anyway, getting back on course towards Kerman. The center tank now empty, fuel switched around to either tank-engine or tank-engine+manifold
  10. thanks! === 1045utc, 1345LT Kuwait in sight! Signal on Bushehr VOR, adjust heading for direct. Heidi brings us some very hot coffee.
  11. Time difference No seriously: i have a week of travels abroad for work so this is my only gap to fly such a distance, in one leg or more, this week.
  12. 0650utc, loading up, refuel, oil, ADI, coolant. 30 degrees outside temps so start of engine 4 to power airconditioning. 0700utc: engine start The B377 Stratocruiser has 4 of the largest and most intricate reciprical engines ever conceived: the mighty R4360 Wasp Major. It's 28(!) cylinder radial, with the 7 cylinder rings turned offset to optimize cooling, making the engine famous as "the corncob". As it is supercharged it has a myriad of switches and settings for cowl flaps, oil coolers, intercoolers and aftercoolers. This times 4! On top of that it has 5 fuel tanks, 1 per engine and a center one; the outer wing engine 1 and 4 tanks being the largest, the inner engine tanks smaller and the center the smallest. To be certain of correct consumption and good balancing the use per tank has to be maintained vigilantly. Luckily my trusted Flight Engineer, Goofy, is up to the task. The only thing I have to do is make sure the ADI pumps, pumping water into the fuel mix to prevent premature detonation in the cylinders at high temps, are running and functioning. 07:15utc, line up with a bit of backtrack on rwy 28. 07:20utc: take off clearance, let er rip!! 07:27utc: climbout ok, engines running a bit hot but within margins. Ease off and turn 095, climb 7000, engage AP. 07:35utc: passing FL150, ease off climb to +500, signal Heidy the friendly stewardess to start serving drinks
  13. Right! Let's get this beast on her way. Next stop, Mumbay! My pirep tool tells me it's gonna be 7hrs50min flying. That's not counting my actual route and weather ofcourse. So first the weather report at FL250. It seems heading towards Mumbay on a straight easterly line, turning south from Sibi, Pakistan, will help greatly in speed and fuel consumption. As such, this is my planned plot, VOR to VOR: Live flightmap: Here!
  14. gazoeller

    Here for a beer. Gotta be quick though, 10 hours between the bottle and the throttle! I plan to leave for Mumbay tomorrow 0700utc.
  15. The Beast has arrived at Port Said, addorned with a logo by VA housepainter @Thorsten42, Now to get her ready for her 2300+ nm trip come monday.