Post VQPR Challenge Shots

Here are some shots from my “VQPR Challenge” from after I landed.

It’s a hair-raising, butt-clenching approach that makes you sit up and take notice. I can’t even imagine what the poor passengers must be thinking, and in real life, they do this in an Airbus!

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Ehh… it was pretty okay for me…

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Second one was pretty good, but what happened the first try? Did you run out of gas? Coulda sworn I saw you do a quick mid-air refuel, why not just light 'em back up and keep going?

I underfueled the aircraft too much, there wasn’t enough fuel to restart the engine. The thing about MSFS is that once you run out of fuel, even though you can refuel it in the middle of the flight but the engine will never restart regardless. Maybe it’s a bug, I dunno. But it was my mistake. That’s why I restart the flight and add more fuel before starting up just to be sure.

@Neo4316, I’ve been able to restart engines before after a “mid-air refueling”. Not on the A32NX (never even tried), but on other planes it’s worked marvelously. I know I’ve done it with the TBM, and the Turbo Bonanza, and probably others, but not that I’m remembering off the top of my head.

I wonder if you were higher if it would have worked?

Well, there is a reason they say it’s bad to run out of airspeed, altitude, and ideas all at the same time, which is what you did here. (Oh, and fuel.) But I gotta give you props for not editing it out LOL…

I dunno. maybe it’s specific to the A32NX.
Whenever I record my flight. I record everything that happened. Both mistakes any bugs as well as successes are recorded. I stay true to my recording.

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I’ve had an engine cutoff while I was cruising at 38000 ft before. That was last year. I had to fly in 150 kts headwind, so the engine was really working really hard to keep up and my flight time was really long. I only had enough fuel to cover the journey according to the range ring in the world map.

Suffice to say, the low fuel warning appeared, and my Engine 1 shuts down, right before I was about to start my descent. I did a quick refueling mid-flight adding more fuel into both tanks. While it was successful in keeping my Engine 2 running before it shuts down due to depleting fuel, after refueling my Engine 1 was never able to be restarted.

So I had to go ahead and do a single-engine landing to Chicago. It was challenging, but successful in the end. I don’t have a recording on that though. That was before I started to livestream my flights and record everything.

I use simbrief to plan my fuel. It tends to be more than enough because they account for an alternate which we sim flyers almost never do. But even in the rare cases that we do, it still tends to be way more than we need.

But it always makes me a bit cautious to run the APU, because I’m not sure if it accounts for that. And that means sometimes I forget to turn it on, especially if I’m tired or in a hurry.

Of course, in a real world situation I would not even think about flying when that tired. It’s not all that uncommon for me to fall asleep in the middle of a flight, which I frequently catch until anyone notices, but sometimes I don’t, and I wake up with my desired destination 200nm behind me! Part of that is related to my disability, but part is because I just don’t keep a regular schedule. In fact, while typing this note, I’ve dozed off several times!

Zoinks!!

Yeah, I tried Simbrief before… And while I can see it’s a really powerful tool. It doesn’t fit with my kind of flight planning. Using simbrief for my flight planning is just like cutting butter with a chainsaw. It does the job, but it’s too powerful of a tool when I can achieve the same thing using a small knife.

I made a few flight plans using Simbrief, but it gets too complicated for me for something that I can just point and click in the world map, and use the slider to plan my fuel and CG.

Me on the other hand, usually deliberately leave my PC to go to sleep or work while my flight was flying. You should notice that I also have a few long haul flights of over 7 hours both in the A330 and A320. For those flights. I always leave my PC to go to bed, and wake up in time for descent, approach and landing.

I can understand that if you’re talking about a short flight in a small GA airplane (though they do have profiles for at least some of the smaller craft in MSFS), but if you’re flying tubeliners (like I do from time to time), simbrief is really the way to go. In fact with the A32NX, you can import directly from simbrief for your flightplan, fuel, and passenger/cargo load, making it fast, easy, and accurate.

I think you can do the same with the CJ4, but it’s been a few weeks since I flew her, so I may be wrong on that one. But since Navigraph bought simbrief, I think we’ll see tighter and tighter integration between navi, simbrief, and MSFS, even all the way down to a 172. And it’s good for route planning, even if you ignore everything else, and you can just save the OFP and setup your plane (small or large) to fly the simbrief route.

Having said all of that, at the end of the day, it is your call to make, and nobody can make that choice for you.

I only fly the A320 myself, I delete all other aircraft from the sim since I don’t fly them. I tried using SimBrief for my flight planning when I tried it, but I still find it too complicated to use.

I have navigraph installed which updates all the navaids in the sim. So just using the world map to just point and click departure, destination, IFR High Airways, select SID and STAR and click Fly and off I go. All the waypoints are preselected based on the airways and when I click fly, all the flightplan is preloaded.

Well that’s the thing right? I have to set the fuel, passenger/cargo load in SimBrief then import it into the sim. Why do I have to do that, if the sim is already set the default passenger and cargo load (something that I never change, other than the CG distribution). Fuel is easier in the sim, because I can just look at the range ring. If my route is within the ring, I’m good to go, otherwise, I just use the fuel slider to add more fuel which the ring will expand until my route is within it.

I just don’t see the appeal of doing more things externally outside the sim that I can achieve the same result faster and easier from within the sim itself.

Have you used it recently? You literally just put in your origin, destination, and (optionally) the kind of aircraft you intend to use. If you don’t put it in, it assumes you’re using the last one you did put in, so I’d do it at least once. And that’s it, you’re done. Click save, “Generate OFP” (Operational Flight Plan, basically a report that you can change the format of if you want to, that fully describes your flight plan), and if you want to, you can download a pdf copy of it, and that’s literally all there is to it. It’s certainly easier than what you just described.

And by using it, you can import your flight plan into your MCDU, have your OFP in your EFB, making downloading it redundant. And origination and destination weather in your EFB, all by creating a login, I’d suggest “Neo4316”, or whatever you’d like. I use KevyKevTPA literally everywhere, and I haven’t found a single place where it was already taken. Your pseudonym might not be quite that unique, but hey, ya never know!

But humor me, and try it at least once. I promise, you’ll be glad you did!


On a semi-related note, it frustrates me that this forum doesn’t notify me when people want to talk to me. This is why I ask people to tag me, because just hitting reply, as it looks like you did here, isn’t good enough. I only found this by sheer blind luck. Had it not been for that blind luck, I may not have replied, which could have made me look quite rude in your eyes, which is very much not my intent.

So, in the future, please tag me so that doesn’t happen. Please and thank you.

No, you don’t. Simbrief will calculate the fuel for you, and you can set the passenger/cargo, or let Simbrief give you a random count, whichever you prefer. I like the random option myself, not only is it easier, but it is, well, random; so I’m not always flying with the same amount.

Trust me, you can’t. It’s either been a long time since you tried it, or nobody bothered to teach you right. If the latter is the problem, I can help with that.

I think you need you just need to setup your notification so about what kind of notifications that you want to havem in your profile references.

I tried simbrief when FBW team started to implement the integration. I tried it out of curiosity. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy it. Like I said, it’s a powerful tool and I can see the appeal.

I checked it again as you suggested and it seems to just be the same as when I tried it a few months ago. It’s just like this right?

But that is what I’m talking about. There’s just too many things on display like OFP that I don’t need. And that suggest that you know where you want to depart and where you want to go and you need to know the airport ICAO code for both routes. So:

  1. I have to already be decided where I want to start, and where I want to go. Then,
  2. I have to know the ICAO code for the airport I want to depart and where I want to go. Either I have to search it on Google, or Open up Navigraph charts to bring up the route.
  3. I put them into Simbrief as a bare minimum, departing airport and destination airport ICAO code.


4. Then I click Generate OFP, boom. Error message.

And you said the aircraft is “optional”. So I play along, I select the aircraft. And click Generate OFP. Done. I have the OFP now.

But now I have to go to load the sim, And when I start my flight, I had to pick the departure airport again and pick the gate to start, and I start the flight and use the EFB to laod the flight plan. That part is fine. But my question is… Why do I have to go through all that. Just so I can get the same flight plan as I do using the world map itself.

Then there’s also the question, that once I load the sim, What if I don’t like the route. I have to go through all that process again, back into simbrief, pick a different destination, look up their ICAO code. Generate a New OFP, back to the sim, run the integration again, all the while I still don’t know how long my flight would take until I actually click generate OFP. If I don’t like the Air Time, I have to go back to generate a new OFP over and over until I find one that I want to fly.

Look, I have nothing against SimBrief, like I said, I can tell it’s a powerful tool and people who likes the randomness and the detailed flight planning, I can see that it’s a great tool to have. But 90% of the time when I start the sim, I don’t know where I want to depart from, and I don’t know where I want to go. So Simbrief doesn’t really help me out with that.

I go by time. I decide if I want to fly no more than 2 hours of flight. But I still don’t know where I want to start. Using the MSFS world map, I can just look at the globe, drag it around to see which part of the world fancy me, I see something I like, I zoom in and I see an airport icon. I click it, zoom it a little more, look for a gate dot and click set as departure. Then I zoom out, look for range ring, Pick a spot somewhere, zoom in, select the arriving gate. Then switch to IFR High Airways, Pick SID, Pick STAR, Click Fly. And all the flight plan is loaded. I don’t need to generate OFP that I can’t read. I don’t need to move back and forth between the sim and external SimBrief, and I don’t need to click more than the necessary click in the EFB or MCDU.

I tried it… It’s doing the same thing with extra steps that I don’t need. I can achieve the exact same flight plan using the world map, without all the hassle of finding the airport ICAO codes, then generating OFP and running the SimBrief integration only for me to have to do it all over again if I change my mind. All the while, I can just point and click a different place in the world map if I change my mind.

Basically flight plan is all done visually using only a mouse. I don’t even need my keyboard.

  1. Open World Map.
  2. Point and click on the Departing Gate
  3. Point and click on the Arriving Gate.
  4. Select IFR - High Airways
  5. If I like the route and time, I continue to Step 6. Otherwise, I repeat step 1 or 2 using point and click.
  6. Select SID, Select STAR
  7. Click Fly and just begin Pre-flight checklist.

It’s that simple. Like this:

@Neo4316 Yup, just like that. But the only things you need to enter are the departure ICAO, the destination ICAO, and, optionally, but recommended (at least once, though I do it every time) the aircraft. FBW has an aircraft type that is dedicated for their b1rd, so it gets all the numbers right, and even better than the generic A320.

But your airplane needs them in order to auto load the route, fuel, and cargo/passenger weights properly. So you don’t have to.

As I said previously (I think), you just put your Simbrief userID in the EFB (I wish they would make that sticky, but so far they haven’t), import the weather, end OFP to your EFB, but it’s not COMPLETELY necessary to ever even look at them.

You just go to the INIT screen on the MCDU, and import the flight plan (and other parameters, like your Flight Name (if you gave it one), your cruising altitude, either manually selected or left automatic, your CI (cost index), and probably others that I’m just forgetting.

Then you go to the Weight & Balance page on your AOC menu and import your fuel requirements and loadouts, and you’re done. The plane is loaded and ready to go. You DO have to put in the departure and arrival info but that’s because IRL (and in the sim if you use pilot2ATC as a replacement for the default, as I do) those parameters can and will change from what your flight plan says.

Frequently, I do. And for many US locations, I have the ICAO memorized. But if I don’t know where I want to go, I just go here, and I can browse a map similar to the one in the FS flight planner (but vastly superior for most things), which will allow me to select where I want to from and to, and give me the ICAO codes at the same time.

I already covered that above, but if for some reason you need to lookup an ICAO code that you didn’t already get from Skyvector, you can do it here. But if you’re using Skyvector to choose your route with, you won’t need to do that. I can’t think of the last time I actually used that page, or why.

Oh, and Skyvector will also give you VFR Sectionals (for the whole planet) or TACs, IFR hi or low altitude charts, ICAOs (that we covered already), and weather.

And you want Navigraph up and running anyway, otherwise you won’t have charts. And they’ll be available in the aircraft soon, but I don’t know if that’s going to require you to have Navigraph running in the background or not. But either way, it’s way more convenient than actually using the app, especially if you’re in VR.

Correct. But we’ve already covered how to actually get the ICAO codes, probably 3-4 times by now, and at the risk of being repetitive, you should probably put the aircraft type in (and the dedicated FBW one) at least the once, but like I said, I do it every time. When you have them saved into your “fleet”, they’re listed right at the top so no searching or scrolling is necessary.

So fill in the aircraft type. I didn’t realize it required that, but I’ve already explained just how easy it is to do once you have everything setup right, which is all a one and done type of thing.

If you don’t like it, you change it in Simbrief, as you correctly observed. But you don’t have to go back and forth, you just reference the map until you fine one you like, and boom, done.

No, you don’t have to hit generate OFP to know how long it will take. Heck, you don’t even need to select the aircraft to get that info, though it seems you have to do that to get your OFP to begin with. But as I explained, once you’ve got your fleet setup, it’s click, click, done. No scrolling needed unless you have a ridiculously large fleet, which as a single aircraft user, you won’t. Unless you start getting ridiculously butt retentive about matching your aircraft to your livery, which I started to do, but realized it was quite unnecessary. It also gives you the ability to specify how many seats of what class your aircraft has, but like I said, after a bit of experience, I found to be more hassle than it was worth, but if you want to, you can! But I don’t…

To be repetitive (hopefully) just one more time, no, you don’t.

Look, I’m trying to do you something that I perceive to be a favor to you. But it’s no skin off my nose if you choose not to do it this way, it makes zero difference in my life or world. So I’m going to (try not to) continue these long winded text messages back and forth.

What I will do is offer to show you, using MS Teams, exactly what my process is, plus answer any questions you might have or wherever the conversation goes. In fact, I’d be willing to do that 2 or 3 times, between aging and my disability which creates great big holes in my memories, I sometimes need that many times for something to stick in my noggin, so if you do, too, I’m happy to accommodate you. In fact, I’m even willing to take the next step and give you full on flight lessons, assuming there’s actually something I know that you don’t which I doubt.

Please note that I’m not a CFI (and I’m damm sure not a certified A320 instructor) but it wouldn’t matter if I was, because MSFS isn’t FAA certified for use towards real world hours, but I think you know that already, too. I’ve also got a buddy who might be able to help but he’s been so stupid busy recently, I’m not sure he’ll have the time, but I’ll bounce it off of him so who knows. But he probably has forgotten more about this stuff than I have managed to get to stick in my noggin so far.

And that’s the end. I think. LMK if you’re interested in any of that happy equine excrement I babbled about, and we’ll make it happen.

Ciao!

Yeah, MSFS has them loaded by default, that’s why I’m questioning why do I need to have the OFP if the sim already loads them by default. I get that you like having the randomness, but to me, I don’t need randomness, I just keep everything at default, that’s all I need.

Again, these are extra steps that I’m questioning why do I have to do all this, when I can have the live weather setting and the exact same flight plan automatically loaded without having to do anything else.

ZFW/ZFWCG can be automatically loaded by double clicking the button, and the Fuel Block is easily memorised for me, 9.46 Tonnes for all my short-medium haul flight. I never need to change or load anything. If I need to refer to my fuel, I just look at my Upper ECAM for my FOB and I just enter it, but this has nothing to do with SimBrief.

And again, doing it from the World map, would have both Departure and Arrival already loaded, so again why do I have to enter it again if I load from SimBrief if I can get it automatically loaded from using the world map? The steps I said on picking the SID and STAR from the world map, it’s just depends on the weather of course, and on live weather mode, you’ll see the wind direction and speed on the world map, so you can pick the gate and the SID that will be headwind for that departure. I do it from the world map, so it will be automatically pre-loaded into the MCDU so I don’t have to do it again.
I know it’s not realistic, but it’s a simpler process for me. The in-game ATC will take and accept whichever departure runway that I set from the world map. So there’s no arguing with the ATC there. I can see if this is an issue on online ATC like VATSIM or IVAO. But I don’t use any of them, the same reason as I do with the SimBrief. They’re too much of a powerful platform for my needs. I just want to fly alone.

I have navigraph charts so looking for the ICAO code isn’t an issue for me. But it’s that question again, why do I need to look up the ICAO code, where I can just point and click where I want to depart and where I want to go visually on the map?

I have a separate laptop that I open Navigraph charts with, so my Main PC is purely for the sim, while I use a separate laptop to run the Navigraph charts and use it for my reference, that way the charts doesn’t disrupt my livestream. I don’t have VR, so that’s not a problem.

I see what you’re trying to do. And like I said, I have nothing against SimBrief. It’s a powerful tool, I’m not arguing about that. Because I agree. But for me and my needs, it’s “too powerful”. I tried making a few flight plan, and integrate it with FBW. I have no issues, But I just don’t see the appeal because I can basically achieve the exact same flight plan, with fewer steps and a simpler process using the built-in world map. I can see the value for you, and for most flight simmers… I just don’t see the value for me.

OK. But now you’re arguing just for the sake of arguing, while I’m trying to be helpful. But if you don’t see it that way, as I already said, it’s no skin off my nose.

Have a good Monday!

And I appreciate the help. Thank you, but I’ve already decided that it’s not for me. And I shall continue with my A320 Full Flight livestream series on my YT channel as I always have.