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Scenery QuickFly Review: Lufker - Spadaro (1N2) Airport by Nimbus Simulation Studios

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Scenery QuickFlyReview: Lufker - Spadaro (1N2) Airport by Nimbus Simulation Studios

If you got your atlas out to find Lufker - Spadaro in somewhere like eastern Europe then you are wasting your time. Because it is actually in Long Island on the grand olde east coastal area of US of A. In East Moriches on Long Island’s south shore to be exact, and that is not the only strange arrangement of this airport...  or two airports, or even an just airport and a grass strip.

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Spadaro is situated just 60 Miles from KJFK or 70 Miles from Manhattan and so you have New York City right on your doorstep, and the historic DEER Park VOR is situated right there as well (The main arrival VOR for NYC). 

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Like a major airport you have the choice of two runways and here there is also the choice of two airports as well within the same common ground, confused?

Spadaro Airport (FAA LID: 1N2) (The northern airport) is the one with the hard tarmac runway (That is if you can call a strip of old tarmac a runway) and the other (western side) airport is Lufker Airport (FAA LID: 49N, formerly O00) and 49N which has a grass runway. Both airports are connected together via a small taxiway or really an opening through the trees.

Lufker Airport has only one hangar and the 36/18 2300 ft turf runway. The strip started out as a farm that was used to grow cabbage, melons and other products. In the late 1940's Teddy Kijowski got the aviation bug and took flying lessons and then created his own grass strip on his father's farm. Friends began to bring their airplanes there and people started to rent tie down spaces. It was not until 1963 that Bart Spadaro then bought the land next to Teddy's Airfield and decided to put a runway in that paralleled Teddy's runway. In the boom times of the 1970s the airport was used for flight instruction and several airplanes were built here from the ground up.

Lufker is mostly used for banner towing, skydiving, glider towing and flight instruction, and the airfield has also been used by many famous people including Hollywood actor Cliff Robertson and John F. Kennedy Jr., who would fly in and park his airplane and go out to the Hamptons. Remarkably Lufker has 2,500 general aviation aircraft operations, an average of 208 per month per year. At any time there is 43 aircraft based at this airport.

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Next door Spadaro Airport covers an area of 50 acres with one runway designated 18/36 with an asphalt surface measuring 2,400 by 25 feet (732 x 8 m). The original owner Bart Spadaro died October 5, 2013, at which time his daughter Susan Spadaro assumed control of the airport. Since then the aviation services such as aircraft maintenance, aircraft repair, aircraft inspections, aircraft rentals, flight instruction, sightseeing, etc. have all gone into decline and are now mostly all closed down. Skydiving operations continue at the airport and are provided by an independent operator.

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Scenery by Nimbus includes recreated areas around the airport in housing, Shops, Garden Centre and many more buildings. There are (a lot of) walking animated people (a Nimbus speciality) and vehicle animations within the airport boundaries.

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QuickFly

One thing that was very quickly apparent was that this scenery was very challenging in getting into either both the field or the airport and then getting out of there again.

Lufker Field was first and a reconnaissance flyover showed me you have almost everything you dread on approach.

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Lots of high tree line over all both runways, the area is full of crisscrossing electrical powerlines and across the southern boundary approach there are smaller powerlines and telco phone lines. Move away a distance and the airport just disappears into the background. Arriving from the south is not as bad as the north, but even then you have the Sunrise Highway and a treeline to clear before attempting a landing.

I approached Lufker Field from the north, that would be easier ride in right? In one way it is easier yes in to find and spot the field and lay down a decent approach path down to RWY18..

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It is tight beyond tight to clear the trees, and then there is still one tree in the middle of your path. Finally try to not hit the row of trees on your left wing as you slowly descend and feel for the grass.

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I get the sweet Bonanza F33A down and touching the grass, "phew" done, but then realised I was not going to stop in time as the bouncy grass ride was taking away all my braking effort.

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A full row of trees were looming larger and larger in my windscreen and I was stretching back in my seat just waiting for the crash to come all too soon.

I stopped....   just.

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I turned the F33A around and taxied to the front of the very original realistic hangar and realised I was still gripping the yoke like a madman.

Time for a quick break.

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Nerves settled and it was time to have a crack at Spadaro and that small ribbon of asphalt called runway 36. Takeoff required a hold on the brakes to get as much thrust powering through the Bonanza as I could. Then with the release of the wheels you still don't get that speed traction you really want on the turf. Takeoff became a ride into forever as the speed was dreadfully slow in climbing. Again trees loomed and the row of trees now on my right were wizzing past as I finally thankfully gripped the air and cleared the trees at the end of RWY36, I was out, and flying... yes!

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I fell into a circuit that sent me south and the coast. I looked hard to try to get some visual clue or bearing to lead me back to Spadaro. But as soon as I had completed my turn back north Spadaro was gone, disappeared. Go a little to the east and you are in a forest of pylons and cables, and so it was time to circuit around again.

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Really, Really hard to find at 2000ft is this nook of an airport. Practise will of course give you some bearings and visual clues to the threshold, I found a glance of Lufker Field and found I was slightly too far west, but still doable.

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I slid slightly right and then corrected as I had now gone too far that way, the sudden rush of the airfield into view then meant a grab for the landing gear as I thought I had more space between me and the runway. Then you had a line of phone lines to get over before being able to descend.

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The corrections and getting the asphalt lined up meant I was landing long. In reality you would go back around and give the whole approach another go, but I was committed, absolutely steadfast in doing this.

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There was no way I would have enough hard stuff to stop on and thankfully there was a gravel runoff area at the end of RWY36. A more practised repeat approach would mean getting the details right, but it is still a tough call from the south.

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Summary

In the challenge of not one but two very different types of approaches and departures you can then hone and find your skills in landing on difficult strips. You can see why so many real life pilots like these airport(s) as they make you earn your wings and need a bit of (no a lot of) study and practise to use them regularly. Fun or hell is the your perception of both airports, but they no doubt make you work for your money. With New York, The Hampton's and even the upper sounds on your doorstep the idea of basing yourself here has a lot of attractions for great flying.

Nimbus has made a great choice in this scenery. Well presented and filled with a lot of local buildings and scenery the attractions here are great. Great animations bring the airport's alive and the inner airport ground textures with trees, grass and worn hard clay surfaces are first rate with extensive detailing of general small airfield objects (okay discarded junk) set out around the areas. I am personally not to crazy about the outer ground ortho textures, as you need a very high resolution setting to make them anything like realistic, they also don't also match into the surrounding (even though they are graded into the surroundings) X-Plane scenery and require the "runways to follow gradients" to be off or flat, which is a shame as if the gradients were being switched on here would have been interesting, but this is the only personal negative in a sea of positives.

So yes I really loved Lufker - Spadaro by Nimbus Simulation Studios as it was challenging, different and overall very good scenery. A very big tick from me and I have to now just go and clean out my Bonanza's undercarriage of leaves and branches to have another go at those approaches...

 

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The Lufker - Spadaro (1N2) Airport by Nimbus Simulation Studios is available from the New X-Plane.Org Store here :

Lufker - Spadaro (1N2) Airport

And is priced at only US$15.95

Features:

Perfect for VFR Sightseing
  • Superb local scenery
  • HD ground textures starting at 0.4 cm per pixel
  • Photoscenery from USGS database
  • 3D Grass
  • Ultra Detailed textures and objects
  • Night Lighting
  • Detailed buildings around the airport
 
Perfect from New York Sightseing
Lufker is located on Long Island, a short distance from NYC:
  • 60 Miles from KJFK
  • 60 Miles from KLGA
  • 70 Miles from Manhattan
 
Animated Airport
  • Using Ground Traffic by Marginal
  • Animated people and vehicles

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Installation :   Download file size is 313mb to your X-Plane - Custom Scenery Folder. Installed scenery file size 355mb.

Notes : "runways to follow gradients" setting must be OFF, if not you get a lot of floating objects and buildings. Also requires a high texture setting with the expanded ground textures.

Requirements :

X-Plane 10.40+ (Any edition)
Windows, Mac or Linux 
1Gb+ VRAM Video Card

Review System Specifications:

Computer System:  - 2.66 Ghz Intel Core i5 iMac 27”- 9 Gb 1067 Mhz DDR3 - ATI Radeon HD 6970M 2048 mb- Seagate 512gb SSD 

Software:   - Mac OS Yosemite 10.10.4 - X-Plane 10 Global ver 10.45

Addons - Saitek x52 Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini

Scenery, Plugin or Aircraft

- Bonanza F33A by Carenado (Carenado - X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$26.95

______________________________________________________________________

Stephen Dutton

Review : 11th March 2016

Copyright©2016: X-PlaneReviews

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Thank You Stephen for Your really good and detailled Review!

I feel the Need of adding my personal opinion here - which is in the end nothing more or less than just that - my personal Point of view. Actually i do love small strips with lots of love for Detail. And Lufker could have gone perfect imho and was intend to reach exactly this Goal. But for me it missed it by 2 cons, which makes it less enjoyable for me personally:

1.: surrounding textures - they look Kind of washed out, even real Close to the Strip when You see them from very low altitude. That takes me out of that flying state of mind sometimes.

2.: the People - lets just call it matter of taste here - but i really do dislike These Robot-like animated persons. In my eyes they look terribly ugly! I would have preferred to see great detailed People Standing still instead of moving bots.

The Point You mentioned - about the not Terrain following runways is a con for me too.

In summary Lufker is ok instead of awesome. But it could get there. Maybe we see an update some day? Again - its just my very own opinion as a well spoiled customer and user of X-Plane 10. :)

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2 hours ago, doorgunner said:

Thank You Stephen for Your really good and detailled Review!

I feel the Need of adding my personal opinion here - which is in the end nothing more or less than just that - my personal Point of view. Actually i do love small strips with lots of love for Detail. And Lufker could have gone perfect imho and was intend to reach exactly this Goal. But for me it missed it by 2 cons, which makes it less enjoyable for me personally:

1.: surrounding textures - they look Kind of washed out, even real Close to the Strip when You see them from very low altitude. That takes me out of that flying state of mind sometimes.

2.: the People - lets just call it matter of taste here - but i really do dislike These Robot-like animated persons. In my eyes they look terribly ugly! I would have preferred to see great detailed People Standing still instead of moving bots.

The Point You mentioned - about the not Terrain following runways is a con for me too.

In summary Lufker is ok instead of awesome. But it could get there. Maybe we see an update some day? Again - its just my very own opinion as a well spoiled customer and user of X-Plane 10. :)

Yes doorgunner your comments are perfectly valid. I can't understand why in the central area that the surrounding textures are really good but so high contrasted in the surrounding texture areas. I am in no doubt if they had been more blended in together this would have gone from good scenery to exceptional scenery. I like the people animations on larger airports but I am not so sure here....  Thanks for your comments SD

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