Glider, sailplane, soaring, please!

Hello Soarscale. My solution to the “sailplanes crash if started from ground” is to give the sailplane a jet engine, but no fuel. See the DG-808S or the Ka6E from MSFS 2020 sailplane

I do not know this method. But, after I found one solution for a problem, I normally do not search for alternative solutions.

I think Alex Marko and his Kinetic Assistant are the best thing that has happened to “Glider, sailplane, soaring” up to now. See Kinetic Assistant - Touching Cloud [OFFICIAL MOD PAGE]
If you like, please look into this program. He uses SimConnect and C# programming language to give the sailplane totally new capabilities. At the “bit shuffling” end of programming the question “how do you make SimConnect communication as realtime as possible” is open. On the “big project” end of programming the visualization of thermals is open. The CumulusX! program of Peter Lürkens does visualize thermals with flying birds. First his program does place thermals at realistic places by itself, give the thermals a “live”, that is thermals creation, getting stronger, later getting weaker again and disappearing. Second he has these soaring birds that circle in the updrafts. I really love these birds!
If you have FSX:Steam - it is real cheap at Steam - you can install the freeware and payware version of CumulusX! to play with the birds yourself. See Peter Lürkens' Flight Simulator Tools
Peter Lürkens has also the WinchX! program that has animation for the winch start of sailplane. This animation is only eye candy. But MSFS 2020 is a lot about eye candy …
Summary: I suggest things that we had in FSX. This is perhaps not “revoltutionary” like simulation one of Elon Musk’s rockets in MSFS 2020. But simulation is about doing the well know stuff in a realistic and pleasant way. WinchX! and CumulusX! are the best starting points for that.

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Here’s a partial update on where we’ve got to with sailplanes/soaring in MSFS to date:

(1) Facebook group: MS Flight Simulator Gliders

(2) Ridge lift: stock MSFS seems to do a pretty reasonable job of this, with soarable ridge lift available on any windward slope with 10+ knots of wind set in the MSFS weather tool.

(3) Thermals: none in stock MSFS although they’re kinda expected as part of the airflow modelling for the Cumulus clouds in a year or so. Thermals can be added into MSFS with Alex Marko’s freeware Kinetic Assistant with the caveat these are not linked to clouds.

(4) Launching: some MSFS gliders are modelled with a hidden, weightless internal jet engine, so Ctrl-E will get you airborn. Also winch launching is available in Kinetic Assistant.

(5) Gliders/Sailplanes:

DG-808S - flapped 18m FSX conversion by Alex Marko, Michael Rossi (flight model) , B21 (gauges). The first glider we got working in MSFS, flies ok, some compromises due to FSX conversion i.e. flat instruments and no panel interaction.

Ka-6E - wood 15m FSX conversion by Paul Falke, B21 (gauges), no panel interaction but flies nicely (MSFS flight model) and good instruments.

Discus 2 - flyable work-in-progress high-performance 15m. (see website for credits). New MSFS aircraft, handles nicely, working set of English/metric gauges.

AS-33 - in development high-performance electric self-launching flapped 18m by Brett Larrett, B21 (gauges). New MSFS aircraft. Comprehensive digital panel with computer vario’s and GPS nav.

Pilatus - in development payware aerobatic glider by Aerosoar.


I made a flight model mod for the FSX Marko, Rossi, Lewis DG 808S for better flight behavior. See MSFS 2020 sailplane

From a Wolfgang Piper FSX sailplane. See

Hello! We would love if anyone will join some existing project, or start a new one.
You can check GitHub - thealx-eech/msfsKineticAssistant to have the idea about how it works. That is my first SimConnect experience, so trying to reach the goal step by step. Most frustrating fact that a lot of variables are disabled for update - we can’t change wind direction and force, scan nearby clouds position, or even animate tow handle in the cockpit.

Fair to mention our ALBATROSS project about competitions. It’s pretty simple at the moment, but we are having progress. It’s code not public available for obvious reason. Last feature btw - Ghost Reply - allow to replay RL tracking data.

Can you please share some details about your observations? I haven’t found a single proof of thermals as a result of any kind of temperature calculations. Even if developers/managers keep telling “it’s already there”.


Currently using kinetic assistant. Can recommend it for those who need a gliding/soaring fix.
Although i do find the kinetic assist UI somewhat cumbersome, the important features are all there. I’d would love to see the kinetic assist features worked into the game.
The sim DEVs should definetly check the addon for an idea of what features they should be aiming for.

Also shout out to the DG808S addon too. Great glider!


The Kinetic assistant is a good workaround to make gliding possible at all.
The only way to gain altitude without that is ridge soaring, but only with strong wind settings.

And because the up/down drafts are currently limited it’s no fun at all.

In the latest Q&A they stated that they have to improve the up and down drafts and thermals (which I never noticed anywhere) before giving us a realism slider, but that is not even started yet/ there is no timeline for that.

so if we want native glider support prioritised, we should all leave a vote right here as well:


Poll in our discord

Changed the name to “Vintage B-4” as Pilatus doesn’t like their copyright hanging over in simulation worlds. It also won’t include any copyright info and will be a strict loose copy. That being said, it will be extremely low cost and depending on the development results, possibly freeware… trying to maintain study level without getting myself into a lawsuit lol

Aside from that the Discus-2b will be entering official release 3.0 on the 20th! Major changes to follow!
Here is the special release trailer!


gldgljgf ://
It would be great if you can use the weather data like we do IRL .
Looking forward to a breathing atmosphere in MSFS .
There is going to have to be a check box/ slider to enable soaring weather as not all simmers will understand or want the active air .

I think if someone knows what is the issue he might be one of the readers of this topic.
With all the gliders having the “legacy-vcockpits-instruments”, I have instant CTD while trying to enter VR with Quest 2, Virtual Desktop and steam VR. No CTD with other planes, just instant CTD with all those gliders.
Any clue about that?

Legacy (FSX/FS9 converted) aircraft does not compatible with VR. exceptions are special one, that has additional “VR” livery, like DG808S.

Thank you. I got some help about that on discord, by editing the model.cfg file of the converted aircraft, it is possible to have them in VR without creating anything new. I have been able to modify the 582sl ultralight so that it works in VR (but I have no working gauge on the panel).

to fix gauges replace in panel.cfg file

location = interior ;


location = exterior ;

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I am going to try that as soon as I land…

EDIT: it works great, thank you so much !

Can you please post this information here? I will put it into the 582SL at MSFS 2020 sailplane I have no VR, therefore I did not work on this topic.

problem of this trick that if interior model missing some exterior parts (like tail or wings), your exterior model will look horrible

I don’t know if it is the right thing to do, but this is what I have changed for 582sl:

In model.cfg I changed that part:


by that part:

Yes, I removed the “interior=” reference
But therefore the exterior view looks weird because you can’t see the upper part of the wing.
If you only change this, the model works in VR without CTD but you don’t have gauge.

Then I applied the change provided by thealx2901 on panel.cfg and gauges were back in VR. I still have the problem with the upper wing not being correctly rendered from outside view.

It is better to ask someone who knows about all those things because I have absolutely no clue on how it works…

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And to be more in the topic: I tried to shut down the engine and do some ridge soaring with the 582sl but I had a very very bad glide ratio…

Glide ratio or (L/D)max is set to 20. Do you know the real world value? The main parameter for (L/D)max is
drag_coef_zero_lift = 0.390 ;
A lower value gives better (L/D)max. But normally you shall change other parameters, too.

I will ask a friend who owns one…