Friday, June 20, 2008

Some random FS9 freeware planes part 1

For Father's day I decided to give my father a few new planes. He's an avid simmer, but doesn't have internet access. So I went to one of the popular sites and picked out a few of the most recent additions for FS9. A side benefit of this is that I had an excuse to take these out for a checkride. I am technically still on hiatus, as I really have no time for flightsimming these days. However, in the spirit of Summer I am letting myself have a few hours of fun.

Now, I've been out of the loop for a little while, so I don't know how new these really are-- they may be old news for most. Anyway, here's a couple for this post.

Here is a nice Tomahawk model by Adrian Fernandez Gomez (see If you're a GA fanatic like me, you will like this alternative to the usual Cessnas. I can't get over how tiny the wings look from inside, as if you have a couple of rulers sticking out of the fuselage.

I enjoyed flying this one quite a bit. It looks great on the outside, and I enjoy the visibility from the cockpit. The VC is usable, but not perfect. The textures are pretty coarse, and there are some gaps, as you can see in the image below.

There's another major issue with this model, in that there is something mysterious going on with the landing gear. If you accidentally hit the retract gear button on your joystick, you will hear the sound of retracting landing gear. This is a fixed gear plane, of course. More surprisingly, if you have raised the fixed gear, you will get a belly landing.
I'm not sure if this is by design (simulate gear failure?), or if the sound and config files were simply borrowed from a plane with retractible gear, but it is curious. There's a nice documentation pdf included.


For a big chunky bipe you can't beat this Anatov AN2, by Vladimir A. Zhyhulskiy.This is a new update to a model which I believe has been around for a while. I have to admit I didn't even know what an AN2 was until I found one among the FlightGear add-ons. I love flying it in FlightGear, so I am glad to find a version for for MSFS.
This is a well-done model of a unique craft, and will probably become one of my favorites (if I ever have time to fly, that is)
The VC is fairly detailed. Zoom in, and you'll see the original Russian instruments (tip strips are in English!). There is good documentation for this one as well. In looking at the documentation this morning I realized there are some nifty exterior animations such as cargo loading, which I have not had a chance to fly. However, those sorts of things are really novelties--the important thing is that this one is nice for hand flying, and fascinating to look at in spot view.
Finally, it has a pretty decent cabin. I like to replay the flight and go back in the cabin and watch from the passenger's view. Not sure how comfortable those seats are, though!

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