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Bert Pieke

Tutorial flight.. questions

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I'm not sure I was able to follow every step exactly, but I sure tried..

Step 23 The Cruise flight level was not automatically inserted from the FSX flightplan, so I entered it by hand

Step 111 The FMA data changed to THR CLB, ALT CRZ, and NAV (not SPEED)

Step 119 How do I know when I reach the Top of Descent point? Do I look for decreasing altitude values on the FLT Plan page?

Step 119 The instructions say "draw" the ALT knob (which I assume means "pull"), but the checklist says: INITIATE=PUSH

I stumbled through it, the autopilot went crazy at about 3000 feet, I disconnected it and manually landed the plane.

If anyone can help me with the above items, I would appreciate it!

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Step 23: up to now it was entered correctly for all my flights...!

Step 111: could well be indeed... I'l check that the next time.

Step 119: that's a known bug. The TOC and TOD won't appear under certain circumstances. In this case it is due to the flightplan having more than 5 waypoint before TOC and after TOD. I did a flight with just a few waypoints and then I did see both TOC and TOD. As long as this isn't fixed you indeed have to watch the decreasing altitude values on the FLT Plan page.

Step 119: afaik VNAV (in this particular addon) is limited so you have to do the descend in selected mode, which means you have to pull. But I am almost certain that during my last flight I PUSHED the button and it also worked... I will have a close look at this too in my next flight.

For me the AP never failed during an approach...

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About step 111: I did a flight in managed mode as much as possible. My FMA looked like this during climb:

THR LVR / CLB / HDG

1st column: I kept speed managed (push) and it read THR LVR all the way until approach (in which case you HAVE to use selected mode, otherwise you won't slow down). Selected mode (pull) always shows SPEED.

2nd column: CLB turned into ALT when the altitude was reached. I set the altitude ATC ordered me to by turning the knob and pushing it, which always resulted in CLB for a climb and DES for a descent, with ALT in blue underneath it. When the altitude was reached it said ALT. When you pull the knob you will see V/S. During approach this column showed G/S (after locking to it). So VNAV can be done in managed mode all the way. (I thought you HAD to go to selected mode at one time, but that's not necessary.)

3rd column: since I was following ATC this was on HDG all the time until approach, which was done by using APPR: at that moment the HDG window shows dashes and the column showed LOC (when locked). When pushed (managed) the column will show NAV.

I think the tutorial is mistaken when it comes to the explanation of point 111! Since we are in managed modes (afaik) it should read THR LVR / CLB / NAV. SPEED would mean we suddenly went to selected mode and I've never seen ALT CRZ in the second column... only CLB, DES, ALT and G/S. And btw I also never saw THR CLB in the first column, only THR LVR...

About step 119: you can do both. I prefer managed mode so I pushed the ALT button, so it showed DES on the FMA. Pulling would result in V/S and you would have to set the vertical speed manually. It's a small mistake in the tutorial.

I wonder how many FMA annunciations (modes) there are because I only see the ones I mentioned... And I found out you can fly in managed mode all the way apart from the speed mode: during approach you HAVE to go to selected mode in order to go to Vapp. The plane only slows down to 250 kts under 10.000 ft, but that's it.

My personal summary:

Speed:

- pushing (managed) shows dashes on the FCU (it follows the speeds in the MCDU) and shows THR LVR on the FMA

- pulling (selected) shows the speed on the FCU and shows SPEED on the FMA (when in managed mode you can 1. turn the knob and the pull to go to the selected speed or 2. pull to see the current speed and then change it, after which you have to pull again to activate it. Pushing again will not set the selected speed into the MCDU or something like that: you will again fly the MCDU speed.)

Heading:

- pushing (managed) shows dashes on the FCU (it follows the flighplan in the MCDU) and shows NAV on the FMA

- pulling (selected) shows the heading on the FCU and shows HDG on the FMA (when in managed mode you can 1. turn the knob and the pull to go to the selected heading or 2. pull to see the current heading and then change it: you won't have to pull again to activate changes: in selected mode a change will result in immediate action, unlike speed and altitude, which always have to be activated. Pushing again will not set the selected heading into the MCDU or something like that: you will again fly the MCDU heading.)

Altitude:

- you always have to set the altitude by turning the knob (it doesn't automatically follow the MCDU like the speed and heading do).

- pushing (managed) shows the desired altitude on the FCU and CLB (climb) or DES (descent) on the FMA with ALT in blue underneath it (vertical speed will be managed): when the desired altitude is reached you will see ALT

- pulling (selected) shows the desired altitude on the FCU and V/S on the FMA: you have to set the V/S yourself

- since you always have to set the altitude it seems to me you always fly in a sort of selected mode, even when managed... The only difference is that in managed mode the vertical speed is automatic and FMA annunciations are different. But you can always override anything the MCDU shows... I suppose this is what they call simplified VNAV. ^_^

I'd like to know if I made a mistake somewhere! Please correct me if I am wrong!

And also: when should I be able to see THR CLB...? Or ALT CRZ...? I'v never seen those.

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J van E:

Your research and resulting explanations (and even questions!) are very much appreciated...they're helping me immensely while learning this beautiful bird. Thanks!

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You're welcome! :)

Beware though that these are my personal conclusions and I don't know yet if I am or am not mistaken at some points. ;) It would be very nice if someone from Aerosoft could confirm my conclusions, because (to my disappointment) the manuals contain no description and/or explanation at all off the possible FMA annunciations (just like it doesn't explain the rest of the PFD and the ND symbology etc.).

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And also: when should I be able to see THR CLB...? Or ALT CRZ...? I'v never seen those.

OK, second time through the tutorial...

This time the FMS preloaded the Cruise Altitude... not sure why, but I like it better..

To Jeroen: The PFD indicators show as follows in cruise..

Little point: the FMS flight plan page shows the target altitude as FL300, not FL310 - do not know why (bug?).

post-618-128370646902_thumb.jpg

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And also: when should I be able to see THR CLB...?

I think it may have to do with how far back you pull the throttle lever after take-off.

If you start in the FLEX position and when established on climb, slowly pull back on

the throttle, the first position you come to is CLB, the next one (I believe) is LVR.

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I think it may have to do with how far back you pull the throttle lever after take-off.

If you start in the the FLEX position and when established on climb, slowly pull back on

the throttle, the first position you come to is CLB, the next one (I believe) is LVR.

Aha... I thought you had to put throttle back into the region that says A/THR so between CL and 0... So it does matter where you set the throttle EXACTLY...? Do I have to position it exactly on the triangle next to CL...? That's a bit hard to do: the throttle doesn't click into position (it does make a click sound) and before you know it you are in the wrong mode again. And I don't see LVR on the pedestal...

A shame this isn't explained in the manual, really. I thought I figured it out a bit, but now I am lost again. As I said, I've never seen THR CLB and ALT CLB! The manual says:

"With both engines operating the autothrust range is between the idle and the FLX/MCT detents."

Nothing about having to put the throttle at a specific detent... The next time I will try to put it exactly on CLB.

But then I still don't know what LVR is and what possible FMA annunciations I can get... I'll see if I can find the answers in the links I posted myself. :P

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Hi,

you should actually be in THR CLB during the whole climb phase of your flight.

At cruise level, the FMA should change to MACH | ALT CRZ | NAV, at least in the real plane. According to Mathijs Kok, you would stay in THR CLB | ALT CRZ | NAV if your cruise level is below FL270.

Check eg here: http://www.youtube.c...feature=related

Managed mode.

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Aha... I thought you had to put throttle back into the region that says A/THR so between CL and 0... So it does matter where you set the throttle EXACTLY...? Do I have to position it exactly on the triangle next to CL...?

Just watch the PFD as you move the throttle. It will change from TOGA or FLEX to CLB etc.

No need to look at the pedestal :blink:

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Did another flight last night and this time I simply looked at the FMA to see in which mode I was. Man, how easy can it be...! The CLB region is quite small, I noticed, so that's why I was into LVR before I knew it. (I would still like to know what that LVR mode exactly is, since it seemed to work just as fine as CLB...!) Anyway, now I indeed saw the annunciations everyone is seeing. Thanks again, Bert, for making me see the obvious. ;)

BTW About seeing (or not) obvious things: by accident I noticed yesterday that you can select 100 or 1000 on the altitude knob: I was always turning the knob for ages to reach FL310, but with the knob at 1000 I am there in no time... That was another 'Am I stupid or what?-moment. :lol:

EDIT

This means that my summary I posted earlier is wrong... There ARE more FMA annunciations. Maybe Aerosoft could be so kind to post them or add them to the manual. (Along with a thorough explanation of the PFD and ND for the target group... ^_^ I still don't get it why automated systems (which don't require any input) are explained in DETAIL in the systems manual, why the things that every new pilot HAS to know in order to fly the Airbus well are hardly explained...! Mind you, by now I know it all myself (almost) but I am sure 99% of the target group won't have an idea about what everything on the PFD and ND means.

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