How easy is it to trim a small aircraft in real life?

MSFS2020 inspired me to finally do my PPL (I’m middle aged and have wanted to fly since I was a kid but could never justify it), but even I stopped flying MSFS completely for the first 80% or so of my real world training. I only used it towards the end for practicing procedures based stuff.

Anyhow, despite being a bit off topic for this thread, I firmly believe that what I read somewhere else on this forum is also true: MSFS won’t teach you how to fly, but it will let you practice flying once you know how.


That might have been me as well, I say it often enough.

I actually think the conversation is very germane to the thread. What we’re discussing here is a broader look at the uncanny valley between hi-fidelity simulation and real-world flying, to which the OP question is in regard.

So happy for you that you got the certification! You made a good choice to lay off the sim during primary blocks of training. I always say lay off until at least the point you’re signed off for your solo cross-country, and even then be cognizant of the possibility of negative transfer. But you’re 100% right that you won’t even know negative transfer is a thing and how it affects you until you know the real thing in the first place, which takes quite a while of real-world training and repetition (practice) to discern.

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I think that is the thing I miss the most with the way the FM is, let’s call it stitched together, in MSFS vs the old sims FS9/X. There I could modify the files and make the pixel plane behave exactly on the numbers of one particular real airplane.
I did that for the Warrior, Archer and Saratoga to the point where standard day performance and fuel consumption was within 99% of the real aircraft. Especially helpful during the IFR training which I did mostly with the Archer and then the Saratoga to finish it up.
But all those aircraft I had fairly unlimited access to, and could resample until I was happy.
The Baron and SenecaV I did fly often enough to be quite familiar, but typically on a mission for AngelFlight so there were other things important and not data recording.
So the simulated aircraft were not as closely matched to the real thing.

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