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Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

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Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

Postby georgem1956 » Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:53 pm

New to flight simulation so thanks for patience. I have the Saitek X52 joystick and throttle system. During take off, I zig and zag along the run way, haven't figure out how to get the plane to just go straight during take off roll, but that's not really my issue. Once air born I can't stabilize the aircraft. I'm trying to set the trim for straight and level flight hands off, but as soon as I release the joy stick the noses starts to rise and it banks left. I'm furiously tapping the trim keys for elevator and aileron but nothing is working. Finally, I have to grab the joystick and recover. Could there be a separate Joystick calibration that I need to do before even launching the simulator? I set my dead zones using the x52 tester in windows. I wonder if I made them too big? It's really tough flying the Cessna, constantly struggling to keep it level and haven't been able to line up on the landing tutorial as the plane veers off it's glide path and I can't keep it centered, when if I'm interpreting the tutorial's intention, landing is just a matter of reducing power and lowering flaps...There's got to be some calibration I'm missing...

Thanks in advanced for any thoughts on this...

George
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Re: Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

Postby Thorsten » Thu Aug 23, 2018 3:04 pm

Once air born I can't stabilize the aircraft. I'm trying to set the trim for straight and level flight hands off, but as soon as I release the joy stick the noses starts to rise and it banks left.


You do realize that when not on autopilot, aircraft are really flown with hands on the stick pretty much all the times? If you give the aircraft time to stabilize and trim well, you might be able to let go for 30 seconds or so - takes a bit of practice - but certainly you can't get up and read a book.

In every plane I've piloted for real, making constant minute adjustments with the stick is part of the experience (in fact, if you fly for a while, it ceases to become a conscious process).

Only very few craft have a rate control scheme in which the aircraft holds a stable attitude once you let go of the stick.
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Re: Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

Postby georgem1956 » Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:51 pm

Ok. I was under the impression that once trimmed the aircraft would at least maintain some sense of stability. This Cessna requires a lot, I mean a lot of control. So much so that I'm struggling just to maintain a steady heading. Surely they don't require that much TLC. My problem is that I need to look down in the cockpit at indicators, air speed, altitude, heading, etc. but can't concentrate for too long without having to make corrections. I know I'm new at this, but I flew in the Coast Guard as a plane captain (enlisted) on HH52 helicopters, the old Gruman Albatross, C131's converted for search and rescue so I am not entirely unfamiliar with flying. Just thought it'd be less "jerky" to fly the Cessna. I can't even line up on the runway for the tutorial's landing excercise which is simply reducing throttle, lowering flaps and more or less gliding in for the landing. I set my dead zones to be fairly wide. I'm wondering if I need to make them smaller.

Very frustrating.
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Re: Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

Postby Alant » Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:50 pm

Why are you using keys? If your Saitek X52 is set up properly and recognised by Flightgear then you should be able to trim with the X52 "top hat" trim buttons.

It does take some practice to trim any simulator that uses PC type joysticks, as the forces are very low and, because of this, and unlike in a real aircraft, the centre position is hard to feel.

Alan
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Re: Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

Postby georgem1956 » Fri Aug 24, 2018 2:26 pm

Hi Alan,
I haven't been able to find any tutorials that help guide me through setting up the joystick. So, I'm plucking along through trial and error getting it setup. It was the dead zones, by the way. Reducing the dead zones made the response to joystick movements much less severe. I was actually to land the Cessna successfully. Well, after a few tries anyway. I kept forgetting to reduce throttle all the way once on the ground, so I crashed a few times until I figured this out.

I am really enjoying this entire learning experience. My goal is to one day fly the A380. I've been fascinated with it since watching all the building it documentaries I could find. I've watched all the pilots.tv productions with Capt. Jurgen Raps in the left seat. It is simply fascinating...
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Re: Can't get the Cessna 172 to stabalize in flight

Postby sim » Mon Aug 27, 2018 2:16 pm

c172 is very stable when flown by keyboard and mouse. If c172 is unstable you are either flying through rough air
or your joystick needs calibrating including eliminating those tricky deadspots. :wink:
Left the controls to make a cuppa in this video and came back to a gently circling c172 flying itself!
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