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Aircraft Review : British Aerospace 146 Professional by JustFlight


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Aircraft Review : British Aerospace 146 Professional by JustFlight

 

Was it the accidental success story that even the aircraft manufacturers of British Aerospace were surprised by? It certainly was not expected to be a big seller, but it was, if just under 400 airframes produced was a major success story. But a great aircraft it is.

 

The British Aerospace (BAe) 146 was created to fill in a marketing gap. Faster and bigger than a regional turboprop, but smaller than a standard airliner like the 100 seater segment Fokker 100 and even the smallest of the Boeing 737 family. Designed for the regional and short-haul markets, the 146 was manufactured from 1983 until 2002. The aircraft was offered in three variants, the 146-100, 146-200 and 146-300. The equivalent Avro variants were RJ70, RJ85 and RJ100, plus the QT "Quiet Trader" and QC "Quick Change" variant.

 

The BAe 146 was marketed heavily as a low maintenance, low operating cost, feeder airliner. Design simplicity was the priority. Many components used were off the shelf products that could be easily sourced with a minimum of specialised tooling required. This went a long way to keeping the maintenance cost of the airliner down. Using the knowledge gained in the production of the Trident and Airbus A300, the wing was made also of as few components as possible. There are no leading edge slats and the top panel of the main wing is a single piece.

 

The wide passenger cabin of the aircraft had a standard configuration of 5 abreast seating, although a high density 6 abreast configuration was also available...   but the most significant aspect of the BAe 146 was it's 4 engine configuration.

 

The four engine layout is unusual for an airframe of this size. Four engines create complexity, but also reliability, The Avco Lycoming ALF 502 H engines produced 6,500lbf of thrust each, and were chosen for several reasons. First the BAe 146 was designed from the start to be high cantilever wing, T-tail airliner with huge STOL (Short Takeoff and Landing) capablities, and the high set engines were set in the best positioned not to ingest dirt and matter in to the engines. Another notion was that at the time there was not a better or more powerful two or twin engine option available.

 

ALF 502 engine was based on the Lycoming T55 turboshaft which was the power behind Chinook heavy-lift helicopters. It was a very quiet engine due to a geared front fan which meant it didn’t have to spin as fast keeping the blade tip speed below the sound barrier. Other quietness factors were the high by-pass ratio as well as sound-dampening layers and the BAe 146 was marketed as the "WhisperJet".

 

Electric power was produced by generators on the two outboard engines which gave easier access for maintenance. Keeping down running and maintenance costs, the engines were modular in construction so that parts could more quickly and easily be replaced. The aircraft configuration was also designed to enable high performance on short runways with a superior climb out rate, perfect for clearing nearby obstacles. This also enabled it to perform well at hot and high airfields where lift conditions are poor. When flight testing began, it was found that the aircraft had better takeoff and climb performance than expected, this is certainly enforced by the spectacular BAe's 146 performance in and out of London's City (LCY) airport with it's physical dimensions of the 1,508 m (4,948 ft) long runway and the steep 7.5° glideslope which is double of most 3º approaches.

 

This highly anticipated JustFlight version of the BAe 146 is not the first one released for the X-Plane Simulator as that notion easily goes to the "Avroliner Project". I have been a huge supporter over the years of the AvroLiner Project by Andreas Much...  The "Avroliner Project" was one of those projects that you signed up for, with consistent updates coming along mostly twice a year, but with smaller "Overnight" updates in-between. I loved the aircraft immensely and it was very good for it's time, but the project, sort went a bit sparse with more attention given over later to the actual website than the aircraft, but it is not to forget how much a leader the aircraft was for X-Plane in it's heyday development. A note that the difference between the 146 and the RJ versions is that the earlier 146 has a clockwork dial cockpit, were as the RJ series has a semi-glass cockpit. Currently there are still 94 aircraft in active service in the world, that being 30 BAe 146s and 64 Avro RJs, with most a conversion cargo aircraft.

 

That sort of sets up the high expectations for this new BAe 146 release from JustFlight with their version of this classic regional airliner, the 146 has already had a release but in the P3D platform format. JustFlight's earlier detail and quality of their aircraft proceeds them, and then add in the advantage of Thranda Design doing all the X-Plane systems and performance, as it puts this release then into the stratosphere of expectation, so can it or even possibly live up to all that high regards?

 

British Aerospace (BAe) 146 by JustFlight

A first impression and the JustFlight version of the 146-300, certainly does not disappoint on the modeling or the quality...  it is certainly on par with the highly regarded Rotate McDonnell Douglas MD-80.

 

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Variants included in the JustFlight BAe 146 Package

You get A LOT of different variants and aircraft configurations with this BAe 146 package, so let us go through each variant first.

 

BAe 146 Series 100

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Length 28.19 m (85’ 11”) - Wingspan 26.34 m (86’ 5”) - Height 8.61 m (28’ 3”)

 

BAe 146 Series 200

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Length 28.6 m (93’ 10”) - Wingspan 26.34 m (86’ 5”) - Height 8.61 m (28’ 3”)

 

BAe 146 Series 300

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 Length 30.99 m (101’ 8”) - Wingspan 26.34 m (86’ 5”) - Height 8.61 m (28’ 3”)

 

BAe 146 Series 200QT "Quiet Trader"

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Quiet Traders come with a large side cargo door and internal freight, there is no -100 series QT variant

 

BAe 146 Series 300QT "Quiet Trader"

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BAe 146 Series 200QC "Quick Change"

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The Quick Change variants come with a large side cargo door and internal freight, but also a cabin forward. There are no -100 or -300 QC Variants only a -200QC. There is however one other QC Livery for the -200 in a RAF Military quise and military elements.

 

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CC.Mk2 - RAF Statesman (ZE701) – Queen’s Flight

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CC.Mk2 - RAF Statesman (ZE701-Modern Livery) – Queen’s Flight

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Both Queens Flight aircraft are -100 Series aircraft, and note the infrared countermeasures on the side and rear of the Queens Flight Aircraft

 

Modeling and design

The problem for JustFlight is that they set their standards very high with the detail and quality of say their BAe Hawk T1/A Trainer. The Bae 146 is of course very, very good in context, again the Rotate MD80 is a good bench mark.

 

One thing to note first off is that BAe 146 is heavy in detail, so it feels heavish on your computer, it sorts of catches up with you (revealing the base modeling in the process) when changing from the internal to external view points, it does not do anything wrong, but you feel the computer has a lot to process or get through to get the changes done... so if you have a light or low powered computer, then you will slightly struggle. Framerate was actually quite good, and in the normal numbers for me between 30fr-36fr with all the bells and whistles running on the ground with the Aerosoft's Zurich scenery installed. But if you struggle now then this airframe won't help you out.

 

The Texture Quality images here are not shown in the "Maximum" setting, but in "High", but the differences between the two settings is minuscule, and that setting (unless you have a power house computer) is the best compromise between quality and efficiency.

 

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Glass is of course excellent, nicely shaped with great depth, tint and reflection... and delivers in realism. Notable are the aerodynamic strakes on the nose/fuselage (and wings as we will see) that add in authenticity to the aircraft...   The 146's wing is interesting. As noted it is high cantilever one piece wing with no leading edge spoilers, but highly efficient. And I love the construction detail that JustFlight have done here as you can easily see the different assembly (Ailerons, flaps, spoilers) sections of the wing frame that are neatly designed and visible. Under wing detail shows all the wing access panels

 

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The leading edge is excellent with that noted aerodynamic splitter above the inner engines. Wing lighting looks authentic as well, but the wingtip inner Nav lights are a bit clumsy, all static dischargers are excellent. There flap guidance tracks on the side of the upper fuselage are really well done and when extended to full flap, extends out to the full complexity of the 146 flap system...

 

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....  I know how hard these complex flap systems are to animate, and JustFlight have done a stirling job here. The lift spoilers here are open, and note the small inner wing aileron that is really well done...  as noted the detail here is simply first rate.

 

The Avco Lycoming ALF 502 H engines are beautifully modeled and perfectly shaped. Inlet and exhaust areas are perfect and nicely cast with a realistic metal cowling on the inlet and lovely shaped engine mounts. The internal fans are highly realistic, but there are no thrust-reverser systems on the BAe 146.

 

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APU (Auxiliary Power Unit) inlet and outlet is nicely done, as is the high T-Tail detail...

 

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The famous split-airbrake tail assembly is excellent, with the internal rear lighting frame expertly done, as is the bulkhead, airbrake door detail is also very, very good with internal ribbing for strength, and with cutouts for weight savings. Note the wing speedbrake extentions when tail airbrake is activated.

 

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The undercarriage on the T1/A Hawk was exceptional with every joint, component, hydraulic line, hydraulic piston, nut and bolt is all the same and applied here, even the strut labels and markings are also correctly applied. The same can also be said of the BAe 146...   in exceptional in the gear detail and realism... The nose gear is stubby...

 

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...   but the Eagle Claw trailing link main gear is exceptional in detailing. The work here is based on G-JEAO - Serial No. 1010 LN:10, which was retired from service with British European Airways in 2000 and is now preserved at the de Havilland Aircraft Museum. And the detail reproduced here is from that aircraft in all it's glory. Tyres are again like on the Hawk are excellent as are the cast rims, and bolt detail.

 

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Menu/Features

The menu is surprisingly quite small with only eight selections (The Hawk had 21) to choose from and positioned via the usual JustFlight left screen side arrow, scrolling on the arrow will make it transparent. There is another menu built into the pop-up AviTab tablet.

 

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The side menu eight selections cover;  ‘Toggle power’ icon (the lightning bolt) will toggle between ‘Cold & Dark’ and ‘Ready for Take-off’ states, Checklist panel, Flight computer, Animation panel (Doors and Ladder), Autopilot (Panels), Toggle the VSI between analogue and digital TCAS, Thrust Management System and the Weather radar...  and on the bottom of the tab are the arrows to change the livery.

 

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The Animation panel allows you to open all four main fuselage doors, with extendable stairs on the left front main entry door... 

 

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...   two lower Cargo Doors and if you are using the Cargo variant then the menu changes to access the one large left rear cargo door. There is an GPU (Ground Power Unit) toggle, but in power supply only and no physical GPU unit?  Also noted by their absence, there are no Static Elements?

 

AviTab Menu

Note the AviTab plugin is required to use this feature. There is another built in menu built into the AviTab, and this is a very good if basic Weights and Balance menu...   the pop-up tablet is accessed by pressing the dark patches on both front side panels.

 

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The AviTab has all the usual AviTab features including Navigraph intergration if you have a subscription. On the head of the tablet is the speed, altitude, AGL Altitude and heading (Lat-Lon).

Press the top left screen change icon and it changes to another aircraft layout menu for again opening the doors, stairs and GPU...  But also here you also have a weights and balance setting page to adjust passenger, cargo and the aircraft's fuel weights (arrowed)...  all changes are recorded in Empty, Zero Fuel, Total Fuel and Gross weight boxes, that can be switched from Kg to Lb units. Overload the weight (very easy to do on the -100/-200 variants) and it shows up into the red. Top right on the menu are five voice announcements, that can be reset.

 

Cabin

A look up and the BAe 146 Cabin awaits...

 

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...   all four access doors are highly detailed (as are the extended stairs), but on board there is a little bit of 3d modeling in the crew seating, but most of the forward galley is simply Lo-Res textures (images)... It is not bad, but to be honest I expected more 3d detail in the galley areas. Cabin is the same...  very nice but not overwhelming. But we are actually lucky in X-Plane as the JustFlight P3D version does not have any cabin layout at all?

 

This JustFlight Version uses the six across seater layout and not the more spacious five across seating layout. Seats are again good, rather than excellent, with again the use of images to do the 3d modeling work. Ditto the overhead panels with just flat images to represent the lighting and switch panels and the air-con vents, they are a bit low-res as well.

 

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Rear galley is the same layout with lo-rate images, nice and a lot of image detail, but again not overwhelming.

 

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The Cargo variant has a sealed off front galley area and a cargo hold rear.

 

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It is all nicely detailed, but not an uber cargo interior detailed like excellent SSG B748...  Cargo container is very nice, but only the one...  stingy. The QC Quick Change variant does not have the combo seating and cargo interior, but it is just the same Cargo layout as the QT Quiet Trader variant...  disappointing, but there you go?

 

Cargo door detail however is excellent, note the highly detailed door conversion frame set into the fuselage.

 

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Cockpit Overview

You can close or open the connection door between the cabin and the cockpit, by selecting the door...  note the folded stairs to the left.

 

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Even for an airliner cockpit, it is tight in here, there is barely enough room to sit behind the controls...

 

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If JustFlight skimped in the rear, then the cockpit in detail is totally in the other overwhelming direction...  it is a brilliantly detailed cockpit. Both the Captain's and First Officer's chairs are superb, great seat molding and shape with a highly detailed frame lower, and covered by a lovely full blue/cream dot material. Armrests are also all fully animated, and fold up neatly to the side of the chairs. Note the third folded seat behind the First Officer's station, better still you can move both the Captain's and First Officers chairs forward via a slider, then slide out the jump seat via it's own slider (all arrowed) and lower the seat cushion...  now that is a great feature.

 

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Centre pedestal is highly detailed and the overhead panel is simply huge and also full of detail. This is a complicated layout.

 

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That is an interesting point to make. Most pilots new to this flight deck would simply want to jump in and fly the BAe 146... but that would be simply deadly. These 146s have a very unusual switchgear layout, plus the systems created here are very deep...  this JustFlight BAe 146 is noted as "Professional" in that it is a "Study Grade" simulation and the extensive and deeply detailed manual bears that aspect out, the manual alone is 247 pages in size and a study of the systems and layouts are essential to getting the very best out of this aircraft. Even I had to stop, do the manual in a professional way and then go back to setting up the aircraft before doing any other aspect of understanding this complex simulation.

 

Instrument Panel

I love the layout of this instrument panel, complex, clockwork and very well done for an aircraft of this era.

 

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Yokes are lovely, and fully active with A/P Disconnect, Electric Trim and a large button right yoke is the "Sync" selection. You can hide both Yokes or each one individually by clicking on the Yoke base, which is a nice option.

 

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Close up panel detail is simply first rate and very authentic, with nice highly realistic instrument reflections.

 

Power on (via the GPU)... 

 

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The electrical power system on the BAe 146 has both AC and DC power services. AC power is supplied by two (outer) engine-driven generators, an APU-driven generator, a ground source and a hydraulically driven standby generator. The standby generator also supplies DC power. DC power is normally provided by transformer rectifiers (TRs) which convert the AC (provided by the engine and APU generators or the external source) to DC. The aircraft battery provides an emergency DC supply and also, via a standby static inverter, an emergency AC supply. The AC and DC supplies are distributed by a network of busbars classified as normal, essential and emergency. The normal busbars are duplicated to form the basis of a two-channel system: channels 1 and 2, both having AC and DC busbars.

 

Even when I selected GPU and all the correct bus channels the, aircraft didn't receive any power? It was the EXT AC supply that I had missed (arrowed), and here are the points to make...   as a lot of the switchgear in here is a three-way switch system, and finding the correct switch and the right switch position can need a little study.

 

Again to understand anything complex, then break it down into sections and study, and that is certainly the case here with the 146's Instruments.

 

The central Artificial Horizon is very authentic in detail...  known here as the Attitude Director Indicator (ADI), it provides a visual presentation of the pitch and roll attitude of the aircraft on a spherical display. The side scale shows glideslope, and localiser deviation is presented on the lower horizontal scale, and an inclinometer is mounted on the lower front face of the instrument. F-Fast and S-Slow indications, plus the ILS indicator...  There is a secondary backup ADI right.

 

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A cross-pointer flight director bar system centre displays the AFGS-computed commands, and is switched on via switch upper right, (upper left on the right hand side), and the Flight Director bars will be disabled if using the Autopilot (AP).

 

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Left of the ADI is the Airspeed Indicator with built in Mach markings, Right is the Altitude Indicator. Above is a very good and highly detailed Annunciator warning panel which you can test and adjust the brightness and follows the white, green, blue, amber or red legends warning system. There is a Instrument Comparator Monitor (ICM), compares the Captain’s and First Officer’s primary attitude and heading displays and if a difference shows warnings (ICM panel is upper left of the ADI)

 

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Lower centre Instrument panel is the Horizontal situation indicator (HSI), with built in Vertical Speed Indicator, with Heading indicator, MILES (to go) and GND Speed displays. The 146 has an identical twin gyro-magnetically stabilised compass systems installed. A flux valve is situated in each wing. With selections 1/2 that allows transfers to the other heading display

 

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Two instruments left of the HSI is a Stopwatch/Clock and a Distance Bearing Indicator (DBI) for VOR1 (DME 1) and VOR2 (DME 2). Note the Radio altimeter above the Vertical Speed Indicator.

 

As noted in the Menu, the standard Vertical Speed Indicator (VSI) can be switched to a combined VSI and TCAS display. In addition to indicating the vertical speed, it also displays any potential TCAS conflicts. Right of the VSI is a backup Altitude Indicator...

 

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...   lower are the brake pressure dials. Note the Radio altimeter above the VSI.

 

On the First Officer's right side pane the layout is a little simpler, but has mostly the same Standard Six instrument layout...

 

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Centre are the same nice Attitude Director Indicator (ADI), Horizontal situation indicator (HSI), with left the Airspeed Indicator, Distance Bearing Indicator (DBI) and to the right the Altitude Indicator and Stopwatch/Clock, with the Vertical Speed Indicator (VSI) set below.

 

To the left centre of the First Officer's main instruments is the Thrust Modulation System (TMS) panel. The TMS system operates in a variety of modes and consists of a control display unit (CDU), through which the pilot can select a required mode of operation, which is interfaced with a microprocessor-based computer (TMC) driving an actuator on each engine fuel control unit to provide limited trim authority about thrust lever settings. System disconnect push-buttons are located on No.1 and 4 engine thrust levers. There are four modes the TMS system covers; Take-off (TO), TMS disconnect (GA), Maximum continuous thrust (MCT), Turbine gas temperature (TGT) and Flight descent (DESC).

 

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Set below the TMS is the Cabin Pressure gauge and OAT (Outside Air Pressure) Gauge.

 

Centre Instument panel is dominated by the four engine sets of readout dials...

 

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...  per engine row they cover with the top five dials; Oil Quanity, Oil Temp and Oil Pressure. N1 output, TGT (Turbine Gas Temperature) and N2 ouput. Fuel Flow (FF) with Fuel Used indicators...  bottom row are the three Fuel Gauges.

 

There are three main fuel tank compartments; The Main wing compartment, Feed(er) tanks and a Surge tank... Fuel consumption is per variant; 146-100 : 425 kn: 2,468 kg (5,441 lb)/h, 146-200 : 423 kn: 2,483 kg (5,474 lb)/h, 146-300 : 429 kn: 2,517 kg (5,549 lb)/h...  with ranges of; 146-100 : 82 pax: 3,870 km (2,090 nmi), 146-200 : 100 pax: 3,650 km (1,970 nmi) and 146-300 : 100 pax: 3,340 km (1,800 nmi).

 

The fuel system is complex, but well explained by JustFlight, and transfer of fuel is possible.

 

Very top right of the center panel is a Engine Vibration Indicator Monitor (EVIM) comprising of four separate meter mechanisms presenting vertical indication displays for engines 1, 2, 3 and 4 from the left which can be tested (arrowed lower, lower left).

 

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Below the EVIM is the flap position indicator 0º-18º-24º-30º and 33º degrees, Spolier Indicator and Landing Gear Handle/Indicator.

 

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The Master Warning System (MWS) provides the flight crew with indication of aircraft systems malfunction, status and the system is displayed on a very large warnings panel centre left and can be tested via button on the MWS Panel upper right (arrowed) and again follows the white, green, blue, amber or red legends warning system.

 

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OverHead Panel

There is a lot of switchgear and detail on the OverHead Panel (OHP). All the aircraft's various systems are grouped together in panels, that can be split into upper or lower Overhead Panel(s).

 

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Upper OHP. There is a lot on these upper sections and selections of the panel, that are usually sited in the lower sections. Top of the left are Yaw Dampers, and the "Main" switches for Autopilot and Avionics power. Anti-Skid and Lift and an Hydraulic panel fills out the left. The Hydraulic power is provided by two independent systems, Yellow and Green, each having an engine-driven pump (EDP) as its main source of power as well as a standby power facility and the switch arrangement means you can control both Yellow and Green channels.

 

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The Fire Protection system on the Just Flight 146 is quite comprehensive. Each engine is equipped with a fire detection system which consists of four detector loops in two parallel pairs. When the loops are subjected to heat, a signal is transmitted to a warning system as soon as a preset temperature is reached. The warning system comprises of red and amber flight deck presentations with associated audio warnings. Each engine is also equipped with a fire extinguishing system consisting of two extinguisher bottles for each engine. The bottles are in the nose cowling of each engine. The APU, Wings, pylons, fuselage spine, electrical equipment bay and the air-conditioning equipment bay are all active in warning systems.

 

Right Panel top is the External and Notice lighting panel, with the Air-Conditioning Panel set below.

 

Lower OHP. The full left side of the lower OHP covers the Fuel Panel, then the Electric Panel. Top centre of the lower OHP is the APU (Auxiliary Power Unit) panel, then below the Engine Power and Start panel. Set below is the Ice-Protection warnings and switches.

 

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Right top lower OHP, is a large Pressurization Panel that covers with the Air Supply Panel, more Ice-Protection warnings and switches bottom centre and lower bottom right is an annunciator lighting and OHP lighting adjustment panel.

 

Very bottom centre is the lighting switchgear for FlightDeck Emergency, RWY Exit Lights, Landing Lights and the left and right windscreen wipers (Three-Way) and finally the Seat Beat light switch.

 

As this JustFlight BAe 146 is a "Study" grade aircraft, then the systems and their operations are quite comprehensive. The manual does thankfully detail everything here, but the depth of the system knowledge required here is quite high. So "Study" means just that in going deep into these systems and understanding them to get the best out of the simulation.

 

Autopilot

The Smiths SEP 10 BAe 146 automatic flight guidance system has an integrated autopilot and flight director system which provides a three- axis stabilisation and two-axis manoeuvre computation in pitch and roll, in addition to flight director computation.

 

Study is again required here as the layout of this AP panel is quite different, the ALT (Altitude) ARM is hard to see, but I love the winding ALT SEL knob (you will find that mouse wheel settings are more accurate), and the HDG (Heading) knob is centre lower panel (took me ages to find that?) Also centre are the Course selection knobs (both NAV1 or NAV2). VHF navigation has a panel to itself on the left, you will need to turn it on via the switch, and then press the centre knob to activate (there is a Automatic Direction Finder (ADF) panel lower pedestal). 

 

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VHF NAV right is VOR 2 (NAV2) radio and besides there is a brilliant "ILS TEST" system for the instruments. Engagement of the autopilot is indicated by a green triangles on the AP button at the top of the panel. The bottom row selects lateral modes and the middle row selects vertical modes. There is a Turbulence mode (TURB) mode... This mode is one of a PITCH and ROLL attitude hold, with the initial datums being those at the time of engagement. On selecting TURB, any other pitch or roll mode (or armed state) will disengage.

 

Centre Pedestal

The pedestal is very nice and boxy, but extremely well done.

 

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FMS (Flight Management System) is currently provided by the default X-Plane FMS system...  so it is basic. There is a custom built FMS system coming for this aircraft in the future, and it will be a free upgrade. The late FMC is also the reason the aircraft is a little late in it's release (as well as the Covid 19 disruptions). JustFlight in rather than waiting for even more time, is releasing the aircraft and not waiting any longer on the ongoing FMC development, no timescale on the release of the better custom FMS has currently been announced other than "Soon".

 

Centre of the top of the pedestal is a (again X-Plane default) weather radar, with VHF COMMs set below (you have to turn them on).

 

Airbrake (Speedbrake) and Flap lever strides the stubby four impressive throttles, they have a fuel safety switch on each lever, to disengage, but as noted there is no reverse thrust levers (you have to move the Airbrakes manually as well)...

 

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Elevator Trim wheels are each side of the pedestal, and the Rudder Trim knob is on the top, and the trim positions are noted on the same panel.

 

The Aileron Trim Knob, Parking Brake and ELEV/AIL are all on the slope panel. There is a secondary AP Panel (also on the menu pop-out), that activates and adjusts the PITCH and ROLL selections.

 

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There is a transponder that allows an ATC code and flight identification code to be entered, with XPNDR/TA and TA/RA selections. Bottom pedestal is an active BRAKE TEMPºC panel, ADF1 & ADF2 Radio and console lighting knobs (three).

 

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Side panels

There are set each side a Radio and Panel Lighting panel... note the tiller wheel on both sides. Note the cup-holder that slides outwards.

 

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Lower is an Oxygen Panel, and Air Vents that can be adjusted. Window detail and opening assembly is excellent (but solid). First Officer's side has the same tiller, Cup holder (also animated), Radio and Panel Lighting knobs. There is a Flight Recorder date setting panel (that works!) and also a working Oxygen Control panel upper right.

 

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Lighting

The BAe 146 lighting is extremely impressive, but also extremely complicated to use.

 

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There are four lighting panels to adjust, one each pilot side, OHP and rear console and the odd lighting knob set around the OHP. Most overhead (Storm, both side panels) and main panel lighting lights activate fluorescent tubes and filaments, which are really well done under the glareshield.

 

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Left side Instruments and Centre dials are adjusted via the left lighting panel and the right side instruments are lit via the right hand panel, Glareshield lighting is via knob lower left OHP.

 

The best lighting feature is the centre adjustment knob on the lighting panel and two buttons for "SILL" and "LAP"...  press SILL and you have a magnificent adjustable flexible stalks with a light on them...  they can be positioned anywhere for the illumination of the instrument panel or side panels.

 

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There are also two "LAP" lights that are also adjustable for local illumination for reading purposes, or again to light the panel. Under LIGHTS & NOTICES panel there are also two rear ENTRY lights. OHP is simply gorgeous in lighting detail, both all the switchgear and the dial lighting can be adjusted separately.

 

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There are knee high side lights on each side of the cockpit, and again adjustable...  which is a very nice touch in detail.

 

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Three knobs rear adjust the console front and rear sections, and an overhead illumination.

 

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In reality there are so many combinations you can find to get that perfect lighting scenario, for on the ground, in the air working or for minimum approach instrument lighting...  it is all quite perfect.

 

Other lighting includes EMERG CALL, CABIN CALL and GRND CALL and a reset button annotated PUSH CNCL CALL, but they don't work?

 

Cabin, vestibule, toilet and galley lighting is provided by fluorescent tubes, with additional filament lighting in the front vestibule when ground power is connected. Illuminating signs indicate ‘fasten seatbelts’, ‘no smoking’ and ‘toilet engaged’, with a ‘return to seat’ sign in each toilet, as well as EXIT and galley lighting...  of all I found only the EXIT and Galley lighting worked, but the cabin lights worked well in the daytime... but there is no cabin lighting at night.

 

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External Lighting

As with the cockpit, the external lighting is extremely good as well....   Navigation lights are three-way selectable; Off-Lo and Hi. Nice tail lighting, ENTRY lighting switch can be mistaken for external use, but it is as noted for overhead cockpit use.

 

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Wing root shoulders has two sets of lights for the excellent runway turnoff lighting, and for wing (ice) lighting which is also excellent...   both taxi and landing lighting is in the wing leading edge.

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Flying the BAe 146

There are as noted a lot of depth in the systems in this JustFlight 146. So the awareness of all the systems and their layout positions is essential before tackling any flight. The built-in (Menu) Checklists are also invaluable to getting everything ready for flight, again I stress, that this 146 is not a hop in and fly aircraft, there is simply too much going on to do that quick fly aspect.

 

Starting up the APU, is quite easy...  then switch on the aircraft batteries and provide power to the busses. When you switch, either power, air-conditioning, hydraulics in that every action has an effect and all seen in the gauges...  the depth of the systems here are really phenomenal...

 

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...  particle effects are really good as well...  this the APU, but the engine thrust effects are very good as well.

 

I am loaded just under the Gross Weight Limit 42178kg, with 106 Pass (-300), servicing the ZUR (Zurich) to BRS (Bristol) Route of 601 nm, which is about normal for the BAe 146. The full range in this configuration is 1,800 nmi.

 

I am not going to cover the default FMS System here in this review...  as almost everyone is very familiar with the system, and overall it is very basic, we will cover the FMS in detail when the custom version is released.

 

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Although the aircraft IS complex, the engine start is quite easy. Make sure all the fuel pumps are on, set the APU Air on (Bleed)...

 

Shutting any doors or hatches and pulling in the stairs give off great action sounds, open the cockpit door and passengers are a noisy talkative group, so you close the cockpit door again for a bit of flightdeck quiet.

 

I switched all the throttle fuel locks off before starting the engines, it is easier than fiddling around with them later... 

 

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...   select the engine you want to start, but always first an outer engine for a generator power supply, via the main switch...   Start Power on, CONT IGN (Ignition) on (There is a separate in Flight Start option if required), and hit the START switch...  The Avco Lycoming ALF 502 H engines will then spool up very, very quickly to the 20% n2  starting point, were at this point you up the throttle from the detent to the idle position to start the fuel flow, the engine then completes the start procedure to settle around the 52% n2 running in idle. If you want the full whine and intricate startup sounds then you will be disappointed here, because there is isn't any, well a little, but these tiny Avro engines are super quiet, even when all four are running it is hard to hear anything from the cockpit, except for a nice humm... the 146 isn't called the "Whisper Jet" for nothing.

 

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Final checks of the GRND (Ground) test panel... the test of the Stall Warning will jump you out of your seat, but all the different sounds are very authentic, and a double check of the MWS Panel is also a good thing to do...

 

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....  last thing to do before pulling away is to set the Thrust Modulation System (TMS) for takeoff and sync all the engine thrusts together to the current airfield temperature, it takes time to set it's self up, but again very authentic and well worth learning to use correctly. After spending an eternity on the ground, it will good to just fly the 146.

 

Unless you have one of those Thrustmaster TCA Quadrants with the four lever option, then you will have to do what I did, lock the four throttles together as one, not ideal, but no option. Flaps are set at 18º for takeoff, but this 146 is a STOL aircraft so a higher flap selection will give you more lift on a shorter runway...  On Joysticks/Throttles, JustFlight recommend to set the "TakeOff-GoAround" selection on your Joystick/Throttle to activate the TO-GO system if required.

 

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There are significant differences between the different three variants, even by load capacity and weight as well, so this -300 at a gross full weight feels very heavy, even ponderous in the taxi, I don't mind as I love heavy aircraft to fly for the feel, but you have to be aware of the wide band of feel of flying the 146 in size and weight.

 

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In the taxi it is nice to tool around the taxiways, but as noted you need a little thrust to move the set weight. Two notes... you can physically move the tiller to steer the aircraft as well as using the standard (joystick) yaw which is a brilliant option, it was usually one or the other.

 

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Another point is to check the "Config" button, which is similar to the Airbus "Config" test. It tells you if the aircraft is fully set up for takeoff, if not the red "Config" alert will show in the MWS...  aircraft ‘doors not closed’ warning system is also part of the config system, but I missed a setup as we shall see.

 

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I have a departure from Rwy28 at ZRH, but at 8202 ft, it is the very shortest at Zurich...

 

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....  throttles up and I am away...  very slowly, and the speed builds slowly with the weight as well, soon I am seeing the wrong end of the runway 28, but just nudging the 150 knt takeoff speed, a slight pull of the yoke to the rear, and thankfully the 146 bites the air. But I do now have that "Config" alert now screaming in my face...  I missed something, which shows there is a lot of detail to cover to get this 146 ready for flight.

 

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I have "Positive climb", but you need to get the gear and flaps retracted soon to help with the drag. This is as noted in this configuration it is not representative of the general feel of the 146 series, in the -100 the aircraft it just leapt off the runway in a rush, so as noted the weight and variant really count on the way you depart the runway.

 

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Very quickly I am in very much in love with the 146, as it is brilliant to fly, but don't ignore the fact it is a very demanding and complex aircraft to fly from JustFlight, there is a lot going on, and you have to address the details, but that also makes for a rewarding and very fulfilling simulation. Turns (banks) are smooth and clean, you very quickly tune into the aircraft.

 

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Moving knobs by pure mouse movement is hard, as noted using the wheel to get exact numbers is far better and easier, also the AP pop-up is hard to use. Getting it up on screen the menu gives you all three windows, of which two have to be removed (every time is wearing)...  Then the AP can only be switched on from here and not from the glareshield panel...   finally the V/S (Vertical Speed) is hard to use in one click increments, up or down, to just hold the switch down does nothing, but there is a trick!... 

 

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If your climb (pitch) is correct and so is the speed, you can "Sync" them or lock them in to continue the climb by pressing the large right yoke button...  The IAS selection also is another option that would then hold your selected speed (Airspeed Indicator, not a panel speed setting, because there isn't one), so IAS is more useful in the cruise than the climb. All PITCH, ROLL, ALT, MACH, IAS and VS modes can be synchronised without having to disengage and then re-engage the actual AP mode.

 

The "Config" alert is still screaming in my ears and flashing on the MWS... what did I miss I still don't know, I again ran through the checklist, but something is amiss... I cancel the alert and it finally quietens down, but the missing setting bothers me, of what it actually was. But notable is that even the usual Course pointers have to set (NAV1/NAV2) and be split for it to set off the alert...  its all in the detail, detail.

 

So you soon realise there are a lot of hidden automation systems, the 146 is certainly no Airbus, but there are helper systems that can take the load off in crucial moments of flight, the trick is to learn them and then use them effectively. so the 146 is a pre-fully automation cockpit with early automation systems.

 

Locking in the L NAV with the FMS flightplan is tricky, as you are a little in the dark of where you are. I well...  cheat a little by using the Navigraph application to overlay my route (from Simbrief) over the map and use the aircraft position arrow to guide me to the right place to lock in to the flightplan, but this is a Laminar FMS basic limitation, it will be interesting on how the coming custom FMS will make these flightplan areas more realistic.

 

The BAe 146 is an extraordinary simulation, but the workload is quite high to fly the aircraft Professionally, so it certainly lives up to the "Study" and Professional moniker. Note the amazing engine particle effects.

 

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Sounds are brilliantly good, but also seriously complex. There are 450 flight deck sound effects alone and recorded from RAF CC.Mk2 ZE701, with authentic flap retraction/extension airflow 'howling' sound...  plus+ there are another 520 sounds samples in high-definition with accurate 3D placement. The volume is pushing the limits of FMOD 1.08 sound system with more than 150 sound tracks being played at the same time.

 

So finding (annoying) alert sounds and even minor sounds will mean moving around the instrument panel and cockpit 3d space to find the source...   super authentic, but another high workload area, another point to work out is of which sound is what, and then address it.

 

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By definition the BAe 146 is not a fast aircraft Mach 0.739 (426 kn; 789 km/h) Max, Mach 0.7 (404 kn; 747 km/h) is the usual cruise speed and the Ceiling is a low 35,000 ft (11,000 m)...  but this is a regional airliner in the turbo-prop category and not a B737 or A320 classification machine. Considering, I am very quickly coming up on to the south coast of England...  time to get ready to land.

 

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Like most regional aircraft the trick of flying them really professionally, is controlling the speed, and the descent speed control is highly critical, as is the final approach speeds, so you use the Airbrakes here efficiently to keep the descent rate speed down to just over the flap limitations in the 170 knt range.  

 

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Set the rate of descent via the trim and press the "Sync" to hold it...  this way is far better than using the awkward menu panel option, but you can do it that way if you want a more specific vertical speed control.

 

One thing I learnt very (very) quickly was the throttle control, as the 146 is very sensitive to any throttle changes...

 

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...  nose down (too fast) or pitch up (too slow) is very (extremely) easy to do, if you don't get the speed and throttle power set "Perfectly" correct, then it will need practise to get it absolutely perfect to the size and weight of each variant, but flap set to 30º and your approach speed should be around 130 knts. Note the flap extention sounds are loud and brilliant at the same time, ditto lowering the gear...  you hear everything, every movement to the final latch locks.  

 

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If using the ILS, then the actions change the NAV mode from HS 1-R NAV to NAV for the X-Plane NAV1 selection, then select both the GSL (Glideslope Coupling Mode) and then V/L - VOR/LOC mode to lock on to the glideslope. Full 33º flap and your final approach speed is reduced to 120 knts then when acquiring the ILS it is reduced to 115 knts, but again to note that in a different configuration (lighter), I was able to do the same approach numbers with a flap selection one step higher at 30º, so the approach speed is relative.

 

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Keeping the speed perfectly aligned to your horizon ball, sounds easy, but you need to nudge the throttles consistently to keep the thrust correct in the right place to hold the speed...  y ou really work in here with the smaller details of flying the aircraft skillfully.

 

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You are tempted to slight pitch up for the flare, but that is not a good thing to do, as when you reduce the thrust the nose goes up anyway, so you have to control the forward speed and so the pitch to have only a 3º touch up altitude rather than the 5º, three times I have done this and always missed the 3º bar, so I still need to practise a better lower nose down pitch flare to get it perfectly right.

 

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On reviewing, it's not too bad an approach, but I think I can do better...  on the flare thumb disconnect the AP on the yoke, and let the 146 settle nicely...

 

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...  once down you pull the AirBrake lever full rearwards to get maximum braking from that split tail and huge lift spoliers on the wings...

 

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....   they are very effective as well, but there is no roar from the reverse-thust, just you silently losing the speed, with a progression of the brakes to slow yourself down, you can check the brake temperatures as well on the rear of the pedestal and switch on the brake fans if they are all getting too hot!

 

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Cleanup the aircraft and head for the gate, then do the shutdown list....  done.

 

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Liveries

There are 10 -100 liveries including, Air France Express (G-JEAT), AirUK (G-UKPC), British Aerospace demonstrator (G-SSSH), Dan-Air London (G-BKMN), Formula One Flight Operations (G-OFOM), Jersey European (G-JEAO), Pacific Southwest Airlines (N246SS), United Express (N463AP)...  The two Queens Flight; RAF Statesman 1980s (ZE701 – Queen’s Flight), RAF Statesman modern (ZE701 – Queen’s Flight) are also counted because they are -100 airframes. CLICK to ENLARGE!

 

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There are 7 -200 liveries including, AirCal (N146AC), Air Canada Jazz (C-GRNZ), American Airlines (N699AA), Continental Express

(N406XV), QantasLink (VH-NJJ), SN Brussels Airlines (OO-DJJ) and USAir (N165US)

 

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There are 3 -200 QT (Quiet Trader) liveries, TNT Airways 1990s (G-TNTA), Ansett Australia Airlines Cargo (VH-JJZ) and Titan Airways (G-ZAPR)

 

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There are 3 -200 QC (Quick Change) liveries, TNT Airways (OO-TAZ), Titan Airways (G-ZAPK) and RAF C.Mk 3 (ZE708)

 

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There are 7 -300 liveries including, Aer Lingus (EI-CTO), Air New Zealand (ZK-NZN), Ansett Australia (VH-EWM), Astra Airlines (SX-DIZ), British Airways (G-OINV), Flybe (G-JEBC), KLM UK (G-UKAC)

 

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There are 3 -300 QT (Quiet Trader) liveries, ASL Airlines (EC-MID), Australian Air Express (VH-NJM) and TNT Airways (OO-TAD)

 

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Summary

The British Aerospace (BAe) 146 is a short to medium range airliner. Faster and bigger than a regional turboprop, but smaller than a standard airliner, and the 146 was manufactured from 1983 until 2002 with just under 400 airframes. The aircraft was offered in three variants, the 146-100, 146-200 and 146-300. The equivalent Avro variants were RJ70, RJ85 and RJ100, plus the QT "Quiet Trader" and QC "Quick Change" variant.

 

Powered by four small Avco Lycoming ALF 502 H engines that produced 6,500lbf of thrust each. There was a standard configuration of 5 abreast seating, although a high density 6 abreast configuration was also available.

 

This is the highly anticipated JustFlight version of the BAe 146, but not the  is not the first RJ or 146 released for the X-Plane Simulator as that notion easily goes to the "Avroliner Project". Released by JustFlight originally for the P3D platform, the aircraft has been redesigned for X-Plane by the renowned X-Plane developers Thranda Design with extensive systems and performance enhancements and with more features than the P3D version.

 

Priced just under US$75.00. The JustFlight BAe 146 is in reality great value for the category the aircraft is placed in. There are not only the three series variants of -100, -200 and the larger -300, but variants of the -200 QT and QC, plus -300 QT, -200 in a RAF Military QC airframe and two Queens Flight -100 with infrared countermeasures, count them, there is eight different variants of three different airframe sizes, and that is a lot of aircraft for just one package alone.

 

The extensive manual is a deep 247 pages of systems and features, not just a system, but reproductions of authentic systems that requires study and operation...   so the package is a "Study" grade and Professional aircraft to learn and operate.

 

All major systems are covered from Fuel, Fire, Hydrolics, Air-Conditioning, Electrical, APU, Pressurisation, Iceing, Oxygen, Master MWS - Warning systems, Engine Air supply, Communication systems, Authentic Smiths SEP 10 Auto Flight systems and extensive features of Thrust Modulation System (TMS) and AviTab menu and intergration.

 

All external and internal modeling is excellent, high quality liveries and lots of perfect detail externally, internally the cockpit is of perfect detail and immersion including for excellent VR (Virtual Reality), with moving armrests, chairs and even a pop-out third jumpseat. The cabin is although is a little lo-res and basic, but still better than the no cabin on the P3D version, QT Cargo has huge detailed door, and two menus service all opening doors, AP pop-ups, Quick start, checklists, TMS pop-up, basic weights and fuel loading. Both Internal and external (complex) Lighting and fully developed 3D extensive sounds are exceptional.

 

Comments include no physical GPU (strange on an aircraft in this category), the mentioned internal Lo-Res and detailed cabin with no night lighting, and to note the aircraft is very complex and a little heavy on framerate, also the X-Plane replay is average. Finally is the built in basic Laminar Research FMS system is in reality out of place in this extensive cockpit. But a custom FMS system is coming (very soon) and as a free upgrade...  and that installation will certainly make this aircraft an even more authentic experience. 

 

Certainly extensive in pretty well any area you would want to delve into, just pick one and be absolutely blown away by the depth of this Bae 146 Series from JustFlight. We expected it to be good, but it delivers extensively as a very deep but authentic simulation. But be aware, that depth of systems and operation, does require time to learn and be put into practise, there is a lot of areas to cover and a lot to learn to get the best out of these 146s, certainly it is no, drop in and fly (unless you want a lot of alarms in your ears), but again that is the aim of this very high level of study simulation aircraft, the skill level is high as well and you will need to commit to the aircraft to get the very best out of it...  do that, and you will get an exceptional simulation in return....     Absolutely Highly Recommended.

___________________________________

 

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Yes! the British Aerospace 146 Professional by JustFlight is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store here :

 

BAe146 Professional - JustFlight

Price is US$74.99

 

Features Include:

Highlights
  • Eight variants of the 146 are included:
  •  - 146-100
  •  - 146-200
  •  - 146-300
  •  - 146-200 QC & QT (cargo)
  •  - 146-300 QT (cargo)
  •  - CC.Mk2 (RAF VIP configuration with countermeasure pods)
  •  - C.Mk3 (RAF cargo configuration with countermeasure pods)
  • Accurately modelled using real-world aircraft plans and comprehensive photography of the real aircraft (G-JEAO, ZE701 and ZE708)
  • Numerous animations including:
  •  - Trailing edge flap surfaces
  •  - Wing-mounted spoilers and tail-mounted airbrake
  •  - Ailerons and elevators feature servo tabs, and balanced, free-floating control surfaces which are affected not only by oncoming air, but also by turbulence, side winds, up and down drafts etc. during taxi or low-speed ground operations
  •  - All passenger, service and cargo doors use custom animations and featurr extra logic such as the auto-closure of doors above a certain speed
  •  - Windscreen wipers with individual left/right animations and independent speed controls
  •  - Distinctive retractable tricycle landing gear featuring complex trailing link shock-absorbing mechanism on the main gear
  •  - Countermeasure pods, HF aerial and more

Cockpit

  • A truly 3D cockpit environment right down to accurately modelled seat belts and screw heads
  • Cockpit textures feature wear and tear based on reference photos taken in the real aircraft to produce an authentic environment
  • Captain, Co-pilot and jump-seat positions are modelled with hundreds of functional controls, including over 200 buttons, 100 switches and knobs, with smooth animations, easy-to-use clickspots and precision sounds
  • Fully VR compatible
  • Aircraft configuration system that will allow you to choose between 'cold & dark' or 'engines running’. These configurations can be customised via the Manifest.json file.
  • Custom throttle lever logic – fuel latch logic which is compatible with hardware (avoiding jitters due to conflicting throttle positions), cutomisable variation in throttle positions for added realism, clickspot for controlling all four levers simultaneously etc.
  • Functional crank handles on knobs such as the altitude select and rudder trim, which allow for more intuitive, realistic and quicker operation
  • Full support for command assignments, hardware and cockpit builders:
  •  - All controls can be assigned to commands, with tooltips on every clickspot to indicate which command to use
  •  - Parameters such as smoothing animation, number of positions, attached dataref, push-button depth, knob rotation multiplier, frame-skip (for optimisation), default position etc. can all be customised via the Manifest.json file, providing great support for hardware and cockpit builders.
  •  - Default commands for landing and taxi lights, windsscreen wipers, panel lights etc. are still respected, despite being implemented with custom functionality
  • Custom features such as ‘hide yokes’ are controllable using default commands (e.g. 'Hide Yoke') as well as via clickspots
  • EFB tablet with door and call-out controls and with AviTab support

Sounds

  • Studio quality Lycoming ALF-502 engine sounds, recorded from RAF C.Mk3 ZE708
  • Over 450 flight deck sound effects recorded from RAF CC.Mk2 ZE701
  • Detailed audio equipment such as the APU, brake fans, electrical circuits, hydraulic equipment and much more
  • Distinctive flap retraction/extension airflow 'howling' sound
  • More than 520 sounds samples in high definition with accurate 3D placement. Pushing the limits of FMOD 1.08 sound system with more than 150 sound tracks being played at the same time with no virtualisation.
  • Full 7.1 surround sound support via FMOD, with 3D positional sound for VR users
  • Extremely detailed external sound system:
  •  - Takes into account distance, speed, altitude, temperature and air pressure, just like in real life
  •  - Accurate touchdown sound based on impact speed
  •  - Multi-directional sound during fly-by and camera location on external view
  •  - Realistic runway roll sounds, complete with periodic bumps that depend on lateral runway position
  •  - Realistic wind sound that reacts not only to the speed of the aircraft but also how the wind is interacting with the fuselage (AoA, side slip etc.)
  •  - Realistic ambient sounds which replaces the default X-Plane sounds with a high fidelity FMOD sound system recreating the atmospheric effect, such as rain, birds, thunder etc.
  • Interior and cabin sounds:
  •  - Passenger sounds, based on aircraft weight, which react according to your flying style. Passenger cabin sound changes as you move around, as if you were inside the real plane.

Lighting

  • Full HDR lighting with gimballed lights that can be aimed and dynamically illuminate whichever part of the cockpit is aimed at
  • Independent lighting controls for Captain and First Officer
  • Dimmable integral lighting for each panel, accurately dependent on corresponding electrical bus
  • Dimmable dynamic flood and storm lighting for a highly immersive and customisable night environment (more than 12 individual light sources including entry, lap, sill and flight kit)
  • White and red flashlight for night operations
  • Accurately simulated exterior lighting including dynamic wing, logo and runway exit lights, and taxi/landing and navigation lights with different intensities
  • Strobe lights with customisable strobe flashing pattern
  • All exterior lights, including navigation, strobe, ice, exit, logo, landing, taxi and beacon lights are fully HDR with dynamic spill light, illuminating ground and scenery objects, as well as the aircraft itself.

Other Features

  • Comprehensive manual with tutorial, FMC guide, procedures, limitations and handling notes
  • Payload manager for realistic fuel and passenger loads
  • AviTab (third party tablet plugin) compatibleGoodway compatible
  • Multiple interior and exterior viewpoint presets
  • PSD paint kits included (free separate download) so you can create your own paint schemes

 

You can take a look at the full detailed PDF manual here!

 

Requirements
  • X-Plane 11
  • CPU: Intel Core i5 6600K at 3.5GHz or faster
  • 8GB RAM or more
  • DirectX 12-capable graphics card from nVidia, AMD or Intel with at least 4GB VRAM (GeForce GTX 1070 or better or similar from AMD)
  • Windows 10 / 7 / Vista / XP, MAC OS 10.10 (or higher) or Linux
  • 2GB hard drive space
Release and Review Version 1..0 (April 28th 2021)
 

Installation and documents:

Windows download is via an .exe installer does the full install and expansion of files in the X-Plane/Aircraft folder at a full installation of 3.63gb. Mac and Linux is a download File (no download size is provided).

 

All updates or even downloads can be done via the Skunkcrafts updater.

 

AviTab Tablet Plugin IS REQUIRED to use with this aircraft.

 
Documents
Extensive 247 page Manual is provided.  Incuded are extensive system details, Procedures and Flying & Handling notes. Flight deck Audio guide and Laminar Research FMS Manual.
 
  • JF_BAE146_Flightdeck_Equipment_Audio_Guide.txt
  • EULAstandardcommercialandacademic2019.pdf
  • FMS_Manual.pdf
  • 146 Professional X-Plane manual.pdf

 

Livery images were courtesy of JustFlight

________________________________________
 

Aircraft Review by Stephen Dutton

30th April 2021

Copyright©2021: X-Plane Reviews

 

Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions) All Right Reserved
  

 

Review System Specifications: 

Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit -32 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 1TB SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.53

Plugins: Traffic Global - JustFlight-Traffic (X-Plane.OrgStore) US$52.99 : Global SFD plugin US$30.00 : Environment Engine by xEnviro US$69.90

Scenery or Aircraft

- LSZH - Airport Zürich v2 by Aerosoft (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$27.99

- EGGD - Bristol International Airport by Pilot-Plus + (X-Plane.OrgStore) US$22.95

 

 

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I have bought this and had been looking forward to its release for some time. It is a challenging aircraft compared with many recent commercial aircraft releases but its worthwhile and easy to recommend. It also comes with a large and detailed manual which other developers would do well to copy. One good and bad thing. JF are being very responsive to issues people are raising, although none were show stoppers. But four updates in three days? Although Skunkcrafts does avert having to download the whole aircraft (again other developers might take note) but it seems every time I go to fly the 146 I first need to have to go through an update.

The lack at present, although one is promised, of a custom FMC seems to be a constant complaint. Whether an FMC would have been in the aircraft, at least originally, is a fair point and the standard Laminar one is included. If you have to have an all singing and dancing FMC to fly what is after all a short haul aircraft I guess you might avoid, but using VORs together with some self navigation is equally realistic.

Frame rates for me are fine, nearer to Toliss than Zibo. I have had issues using Better Pushback with the aircraft which I need to examine more.

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On 4/30/2021 at 7:54 AM, Stephen said:

Unless you have one of those Thrustmaster TCA Quadrants with the four lever option, then you will have to do what I did, lock the four throttles together as one, not ideal, but no option.

Looks like an absolutely incredible aircraft, but this is kinda confusing me. Does this mean that if I have a Logitech Extreme 3D Pro, which has one small lever that can be programmed to control all throttles, I will have to manually move the throttles from inside the sim?

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You have a choice. Select Throttle (THRTL1) for the one selection on the joystick, or move the four throttles separately in the aircraft, both are not perfect, but the joystick version is the preference.

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