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Air Hauler for X-Plane: Epilogue
2 replies to this topic
Posted 12 December 2011 - 01:36 PM
Hi folks,So hows things going with AVSIM Hard Case Hauling at this point?If you remember from the piece we just reached the 49.5 rep mark. After finally reaching the summit of 50 rep points I went ahead and flogged the C172, opened a second base at CYPR (Prince Rupert-ILS and NDB...good stuff), and went ahead and leased a Saratoga for a bigger cargo bay, more speed, and a lovely cockpit thanks to Carenado.Sounds pretty good right? It seemed a great idea as I flew for the first time from CYPW up the coast to CYPR collecting a high value fee and enjoying the new facilities.Small problem.Icing. IFR is no issue beyond the technical challenge but moving just the 300-odd miles north opens up a big can of weather related whoopass. And X-Plane seems to model this rather well-unfortunately for me.Its really REALLY bad news. Taking off out of CYPR on another job my ceilings were forecast for 7000 or so and 10 miles visibility.Getting ready to roll from Prince Rupert[attachment=35394:Ready to roll CYPR.JPG]So I'm climbing out following my flight plan to Bella Bella Denny Island (CYJQ-apparently in sore need of a booze shipment for the holidays) and monitoring UNICOM on VATSIM when suddenly I wind up in this:[attachment=35395:Uh oh.JPG]No problem right? I have instruments and was filed IFR anyway. As I passed FL050 I noticed I was losing engine power and the aircraft starting pitching drastically nose up followed by a stall. I was in big trouble folks. I managed to get control back at around 1500' or so and the plane seemed to have regained power and stability. I then looked out the window to see this:[attachment=35396:Quarter mile viz.JPG]Yeah pretty low to the ground. I spent the next hour at around 1100' snaking my way around the offshore islands tracking the MS NDB as best I could until 30 miles north of my destination I popped out of the muck into sunshine.Air Hauler provides no forgiveness to an unwise company owner that does not take the abilities of his aircraft into account when choosing where to base! I do not have the cash to lease a different icing-equipped aircraft so essentially I am restricted during the winter months with the Saratoga to mainly clear sky flight.Other options may include leasing a bush Husky with skis and reducing the job range to short range VFR until I can build the capital to pick up a Caravan, Twin Otter, or PC-12/47 that can handle these dreadful conditions.So thats where I stand at the moment.Hope you folks enjoyed the article and should you be flying Air Hauler please feel free to leave a note with your experiences here.Cheers and happy flying!Tedp.s. I'll update this at some point down the road.
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Posted 14 December 2011 - 06:31 AM
With all the hoopla surrounding the recent release of XPX the current X-Planev9.7 is being somewhat....neglected...out of hand (for a lack of better term) which is a real shame as it has-and will continue to have a lot to offer for sim pilots.The stock weather, clouds, and effects are pretty good as you have seen. Here is another recent image on approach to the Yellowknife area:[attachment=35468:FL070 banking over Great Slave Lake.JPG]Now I have just added REXPlane to the mix and last night grabbed this shot while setting up a couple initial themes. These are the HD cloudsets:[attachment=35469:REXPlane test.JPG]Pretty cool right? As usual the folks at Real Environment Xtreme blow me away!Now in all fairness FSX with REX is certainly no slouch:[attachment=35470:Picking my way.JPG] [attachment=35471:MVFR.JPG]But as far as actually "feeling" the weather in lighter aircraft as well as experiencing icing XP9.7 gives a pretty potent ride. Despite the rather extreme weather shown in the FSX Twin Otter image the plane was not really bouncing around as you would expect between the weather and winds howling off the rocks (yeah I blew the weather forecast on that hop lol) and the effects of icing appeared negligible. Same thing in X-Plane and I would more than likely be reaching for a barf bag Side note-I love the Twin Otter....it's like flying Ft Knox.....safe as houses! Aerosoft guys are you listening? Port this sucker over to XP and make it good please! I have seen WIP images of a beauty from another developer too...so lets see 'em already.Anyway....I have burbled enough about the weather for today. Give the XP version of Air Hauler a shot and enjoy the roller coaster!CheersTedp.s. Yes I like my skies vivid, exciting, and filled with color. I can see drab "ultra-realistic snotty gray" simply looking out my Lincolnshire window. When I was visiting my family near Miami last month I could not get enough of the sky colors and clouds...and the heat. If you will pardon me I'm off to hibernate now **edit**I should mention that I am using the Clear Skies plug-in. I set it to 40km which prevents that wierd FPS-saving fog rolling in on systems that can handle the draw distance (my system and settings have no problems). It is excellent and well suited for the aircraft I prefer to fly.Now in a jet within XP the 40km distance can sometimes look a bit odd from on high....flying in a fishbowl I guess. But within FSX the same issue arises when the cloud draw range is reduced to improve performance and you get the 60nm reverse cloud fishbowl effect. Chutes, ladders, and compromises!
Pretty interesting. This actually renewed my interest in X-Plane! I love the looks of those weather effects, I must say...