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Aircraft Review : Piper Aerostar 601P by Avia71

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Aerostar 601P_Header.jpg

 

Aircraft Review : Piper Aerostar 601P by Avia71

 

Ted R. Smith is an aviation legend, this is the same person of whom also designed the famous Aero Commander, and the bought the first small business jet aircraft to market which was the Jet Commander which evolved into the Astra Jet.... and then there was his Aerostar/Sequoia the fastest Twin-Engined general aviation aircraft ever built...  just the right aircraft for drug running, right.  So another legend but in the infamous collection of bad people pretending to be really a good person to get rich is Barry Seal, who was a sort of Robin Hood in reverse, Seal was a pilot for the commercial airline TWA, and was contacted by a CIA case officer and asks Seal to fly clandestine reconnaissance missions for the CIA over Central America using a small plane with cameras installed. But the deal becomes a two sided affair with Seal running drugs into the United States one way for the cartels, and then also smuggling and trading guns back to the cartel in the other direction for the CIA. So for operations like that you need a pretty good aircraft that was the fastest you get you hands on and could fly very high (or very low) when required... depending on who was actually shooting at you. This real life caper was recreated in a film called "American Made" with a certain Tom (Top Gun) Cruise as Barry Seal, but the real star of the film is certainly the Aerostar 600, which was the perfect tool for the dodgy business of doing clandestine CIA missions in moving drugs and running guns.

 

I know, you just all sat there and said "I want THAT plane" I did, in X-Plane anyway...   and here it is from Avia71. This is the 601P version and not the 600 version in the film. The 601P had the higher-rate turbochargers to feed a cabin pressurization system and the P is for "Pressurised" and it flies very fast for a medium-twin as the maximum speed is 306 mph (492 km/h) and the cruise speed is still a whopping 242 mph (390 km/h), with a service ceiling of 7,620 m (25,000 ft) and the aircraft still holds the land closed speed record for a production piston-twin. And the name Piper? well the Ted Smith company was taken over by the Piper Aircraft Company in 1978 after Smith died, and continued to build the aircraft until 1984, but in reality this 601P is and always will be only a Ted Smith Aerostar Corporation aircraft.

 

Aerostar 601P_Head 1.jpg

 

The Aerostar's design is very different from the perspective of the usual Piper or Beechcraft. There is certainly a lot of the Aero Commander in the design, but with an almost jet trainer tail section, wings are almost swept forward. But the cabin size is huge at 1.17 m (3 ft 10 in) in width and 3.81 m (12 ft 6 in) in length. The Aerostar is the sports car to the utility truck like Commander.

 

Aerostar 601P_Head 2.jpgAerostar 601P_Head 3.jpgAerostar 601P_Head 4.jpgAerostar 601P_Head 5.jpgAerostar 601P_Head 6.jpg

 

Avia71's design is very good, if not excellent. Note that my comments are in context to the price position of just a mid-$30-$35 aircraft. It must not be compared to a high level Carenado, Aerobask or even Just Flight/Thranda design, it is set a notch lower here, but for the price the aircraft is a quality design. Most of the external detail is created by clever images more than mapping, so from many angles the aircraft can look very if not over smooth, there are also the odd aerodynamic fins and naca ducts all over the fuselage too break this effect up and I love the centre fuselage tank refuel caps, and so overall the detailing is very good.

 

Aerostar 601P_Detail 1.jpgAerostar 601P_Detail 2.jpgAerostar 601P_Detail 3.jpgAerostar 601P_Detail 7.jpg

Aerostar 601P_Detail 8.jpgAerostar 601P_Detail 4.jpg

 

HF and XM radio weather antennas and the distinctive three way aerials on the tail are well reproduced, as is the wing lighting assemblies. The Twin 290hp Lycoming IO-540-K engines are powerful but sleek in their excellent housings, note the lovely twin exhausts protruding on the underside of the same engine housings. The aircraft has Hartzell 3 blade propellers, and some 600 versions have 4 bladed props.

 

Aerostar 601P_Detail 5.jpgAerostar 601P_Detail 6.jpg

 

Avia71 was always a good developer, but most of his earlier releases were mostly light trainers or small aerobatic aircraft, so this 601P design is a big step up in size and scale from those aircraft, and so in context overall the design and development advance is very, very good.

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Detail 1.jpg

 

Landing gear detail is excellent. The main gear is long, spindly or high which ever way you want to see it as the wings are set quite high on the fuselage...

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Detail 6.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Detail 7.jpg

Aerostar 601P_Ground Detail 2.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Detail 3.jpg

 

...   and the corrosion and highly weathered look is really well done, there is a more real world and worn through the years feel of which is more of what most aircraft wheels and mounts actually look like in most cases. Absorption animation with metal-links as well is very realistic.

 

Split main door is well done, but quite a step up without the lower step? It is opened internally. A nice touch would be when the door is opened then the seat moves backwards to allow boarding. I can't see any baggage doors or if the panel in the nose is a baggage compartment?

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Detail 4.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Detail 5.jpg

 

Those Hartzell 3 blade propellers are well done and have realistic feathering, note the really nice lovely chrome spinners.

 

Menus

The menu tab is situated on the left side of the screen and noted as "71". The menu consists of five tabs that cover: Checklist, Weights&Balances, Cabin Altitude Calculator, Data&Maintenance and options. A welcome page pops up when you first start the aircraft.

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Menu 1.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Menu 2.jpg

 

Checklists is a fifteen page checklist (a hard copy is provided as well) and it is important to get the right sequence of setup of the oxygen/pressurization system (it's complicated).

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Menu 3.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Menu 4.jpg

 

Weights&Balances menu is a excellent...    You can select five extra passengers that are shown externally in the aircraft, you can't adjust their actual weight's but the averages are fine in lbs/kgs, Fuel is left and right wing tanks 372lbs (62 US GAL) per tank maximum and a centre (fuselage) tank 249 lbs (41.5 US GAL) maximum. There is a payload (baggage) selection to 2336 lbs/1060 kg and then you are noted as "Overloaded".

 

Cabin Altitude Calculator is a helper to compute your cabin altitude setting and the differential pressure.

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Menu 5.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Menu 6.jpg

 

Data&Maintenance gives you your time of board (and on ground percentage %), Engines Operating time (hours) and time to your next service. Tire health and your two battery health percentages are also shown. You can fix the Batteries, Change the tires and fix your engines via the buttons.

 

Options has four options to choose from. Spanner is Mechanical Management, that allows you to state to keep your previous mechanical state or repair all parts at the start of each flight. Fuel states allows you to either keep the last fuel level recorded or set an average fuel state for each flight.

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Menu 9.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Menu 10.jpg

 

The cone tab can set static elements like cones and wheel chocks...  the final option is a pill? This will either forget all your current data (on the Data page) from previous flights or keep all your current data active for this flight, in other words you keep all the data or just the data from this current flight.

 

Aerostar 601P_Ground Menu 11.jpgAerostar 601P_Ground Menu 8.jpg

 

Internal

This is an aircraft from the late Sixties and early 70's and the instrument panel and cabin reflects that period, in other words it is very dark and brown inside. Instrument panel is basic but authentic to the era.

 

Aerostar 601P_Internal 1.jpgAerostar 601P_Internal 2.jpg

 

The cabin is noted as 3ft 10ins across, as it may be, but it looks bigger inside than say almost four 12 inch rulers put end to end? Brown vinyl outer with the nice straw like matting inserts gives you right feel, seating is for pilot+five passengers or three children across the rear bench.

 

Aerostar 601P_Internal 3.jpgAerostar 601P_Internal 4.jpg

 

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The cockpit area feels brighter, and so it is...  there are a pair of slatted animated blinds over your head, and these provide a lot of light or a slatted lighting effect across the cockpit, this is really well done and very authentic.

 

Aerostar 601P_Internal 7.jpgAerostar 601P_Internal 8.jpg

 

In the air with the Aerostar

My flight today is from KDAB (Daytona) to KRSW (Southwest Florida) which is just flying down and across Florida. Aircraft is fully loaded and just under the max weight of 4512lbs.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 1.jpg

 

If the aircraft is at idle speed then you get a slower moving propeller, I'm personally not sure about this effect, but it certainly can be distracting in the fact you think the prop is shutting down...  Sounds are FMOD and are good on start up, good at low speeds but there is that distinctive washing machine chunk, chunk at higher speeds, I am not a big fan of those chunky sounds and there are a few different types of these in the sound range, but overall the sounds are good and realistic.

 

Smoothly opening the throttles and the 601P will take off down the runway like a dragster... and this is a fully loaded aircraft, it feels way over engined or over powered for an aircraft of this size and rotation is around 150 kts...

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 2.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 3.jpg

 

...  I found the Aerostar dipped heavily to the right and needed a fair correction to level the aircraft, and my first thought's were that it was quite touchy under the yoke, it flies fine or more than fine, but I expected the aircraft to feel more heavier or bulkier than this in the air.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 4.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 5.jpg

 

That right bank feel took a fair while to dial out, it should be natural to level the aircraft, but I was finding I required more concentration and action in actually doing so. So the 601P needs a fair time to adjust to it's flying feel, and far more than I usually do with other aircraft in reviews, but the real aircraft's flying history is also quite  turbulent and during flight you had to stay ahead of the aircraft

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 6.jpg

 

The instrument details don't help, the Airspeed indicator numbers are very small and speed zones are hard to read, worse on landing for finding flap speeds...  the artificial horizon is very dull and again very hard to read, the rest of the instruments however are fine and legible. The instrument lighting has already had one brightness upgrade, worse are the smaller avionic panels, as some are barely readable. I also looked for an avionic lighting adjustment knob, but to to no avail.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 7.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 8.jpg

 

Another point is that a few items in the aircraft require switching on before actual switching to use them, the AP (Autopilot) and the Door Seal switches are off, and need to be switched on to use the required items, and both are situated on the centre glareshield panel, and as are the overhead lighting switches that are down on the lower panel and all the avionics need to be switched on as well. 601P's rate of climb is 1,840 ft/min (9.4 m/s), but the speed rises easily even at this recommended set pitch.

 

Instrument Panel

The instrument panel layout is quite basic for the Twin-Engined aircraft. There are only flying instruments for the pilot, and obviously the second seat is for passengers only. Both Yokes can be hidden by a click to give more access to the lower panel.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 1.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 2.jpg

 

The Standard Six instruments are centred in the line of sight of the flying pilot with the Airspeed Indicator, Artificial Horizon and the Attitude Indicator on the top row and Radar Altitude, Turn Coordinator, Vertical Speed Indicators set out directly below. The Heading Dial is offset to the right on the top row with a very realistic built in CDI (Course Deviation Indicator) on the course knob. A feature is that if you press the top of the current heading then the heading pointer will move to that position and if you press the QNH pressure it will switch to Standard Pressure, but the inHG setting is not available.

 

Bottom far left is a ADF pointer dial and bottom far right is a Garmin NAV2 alignment dial. Lower panel is a Bendix/King KR 87 ADF receiver and a Bendix/King GTX 320A Transponder (don't forget to turn both ON). Lower bottom panel are the main power and external lighting switches. 

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 3.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 4.jpg

 

Situated Right Panel are the engine gauges...  Manifold Pressure (all dials have both engines on one dial) RPM and EGT (Exhaust Gas Temperature) and far right is a Gyro pressure gauge. Lower row has one set of gauges for each engine that covers Oil Pressure and Temperature and CYL (Cylinder Head Temperature), and a single dial that covers both engines Fuel Pressures. There is a digital Fuel Flow readout for each engine and Fuel Remaining display, far left is a HYD (hydraulic) pressure gauge.

 

Lower panel is an interesting layout panel that covers left and right engine Start (Magnetos) and Fuel boost and Fuel Tank switching (with X-Feed), you need to refer to the manual on how to set the switching and the use of the set up of fuel contents and fuel transfers, its complicated but doable.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 13.jpg

 

Gear and Flap levers and elevator and rudder position indicators are also on this section of the panel with an almost hidden Hobbs hourly meter.

 

Lower right panel has an active working circuit breaker panel, flip a breaker and it works, click it back in and your in business again and most electrical systems are active.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 5.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 6.jpg

 

Avionic equipment stack has Collins AMR 350 radio top, then the X-Plane native Garmin 530 GPS unit. An early Garmin NAV2 Radio is next and this is connected to a Bendix/King N1/N2/ADF readout panel for NM, Speed (kts) and Min, but the panel (arrowed) is barely readable. Lower stack is a very authentic NARCO KWK 66 Weather display with TCAS, and adjustable for Tilt and Range.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 14.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 7.jpg

 

Top center on the glareshield are the three Fuel tank gauges for L WING - FUS - R WING. Instrument lighting adjustments, Radio on/off master, Autopilot Master and Door Seal Master switches. A full set of testable annunciator lighting is excellent.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 15.jpg

 

There is a ST3400 is inspired by the SANDEL ST3400 that displays TERRAIN or TOPO and Wind direction. It looks extremely authentic in the cockpit, but it is still noted as "Under Development".

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 8.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 16.jpg

 

The center console looks basic in design, but it is very well done. The levers that cover the twin throttles, propellers and mixtures are lovely to look at, but the propeller levers are hard to move (does that make them realistic?) They are far better to use on an addon setup.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 11.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 12.jpg

 

On the rear of the console there is the panel for the Century X Autopilot, and with no pop-up available it can be hard to use and the scroll wheel was slow to adjust the pitch, but otherwise it was very realistic. To the right are the electric rudder and elevator trims.

 

Far rear centre console is the complicated pressurisation system. There was the pressure calculator you require on the menu tab, then you must seal the door (that switch) and make sure all the panel indicators are on and green, then set the cabin altitude, and the cabin rate to full increase. Once climbing you then have to move the cabin rate to full decrease, then reset the cabin altitude to the desired altitude and then adjust the rate of climb until you reach your altitude... once there you have to keep your eye on the DIFF PRESS as It should never exceed 4.25 PSI. and if exceeded, then an alarm knob warns you on the right panel. Then just do the reverse procedures to go down...  easy peasy, but it takes a few goes to get it all working correctly. Overall the system is very authentic and it does work really well.

 

Aerostar 601P_Panel 9.jpgAerostar 601P_Panel 10.jpg

 

Everything in the cockpit and cabin is all in keeping with the aircraft's era feel, those lovely yokes (but the electric trim or AP disconnect don't work) and the wooden panel feel...

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 11 LG.jpg

 

If you run the engines RPM over the 25 RPM then you will get a warning light for each engine...  but setting the throttle below this speed makes the aircraft slow, at around 170kts...  still fast by most standards, but you have too in fact fine tune the pitch of the propellers by pulling the "Prop" levers back a little in the gate and the aircraft can then climb up to it's full 261 kt (483 km/h) cruise speed, but you will be happy at being around a round 250 knts. In sounds if you plugin the headset on either end of the panel it adjusts the sound as if you are wearing a headset or it becomes very bassy and the heavier sounds are not for everyone.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 9.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 10.jpg

 

Arrival at KRSW and its time to go down to land, and you really feel the speed in the Aerostar, as it at 250 kts very quickly covered the ground over Florida that would take ages in say the F33A Bonanza.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 12.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 13.jpg

 

The gear retraction and extraction is excellent, the gear drags at points of movement and they don't drop down together in time for realism...

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 14.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 15.jpg

 

But with the Airspeed indicator being very hard to read, finding you flap extension positions are a bit hit and miss, even if you note down the numbers it is still hard to work out on the airspeed dial where they actually are?

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 16.jpg

 

The flap selector is interesting as well, flip the lever down for a change of flap at UP-10º-20º-30º-FULL and it flips up again till you press it again for another drop position and you do the same flipping operation upwards to retract, it's easy but tricky at the same time, as it is hard to see what flap selection position you are in and even counting noises doesn't really work. so it is mostly a feel and guess on what speed and flap position your are actually in... and in time you will certainly get used to it, but it is not easy at the start. My steps were 130knts (guessing) for 10º, 100 knts for 20º and a nice approach speed, 30º at 90knts and then a final drop to FULL at 85knts...  77 knots (143 km/h; 89 mph) is your stall speed.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 17.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 19.jpg

 

Radar Altitude instrument is excellent in gauging your ground distance (arrowed) and I did find the 601P could be a bit floaty and I landed a little long, but the aircraft was nice and controllable at landing speed...

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 20.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 21.jpg

 

...   again that slight bank to the right returned on the final flare?

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 22.jpgAerostar 601P_Flying 23.jpg

 

So it is a very technical aircraft to fly, and the 601P will need time and a fair bit of flying to become really familiar with it's personality and quirks.

 

Aerostar 601P_Flying 24.jpg

 

Documents holder

Down to the pilot's left (arrowed) is a clipboard that acts like a pop-up documents holder...

 

Aerostar 601P_Clickboard 1.jpgAerostar 601P_Clickboard 2.jpg

 

In position it is quite small and hard to read. But you can add in your own documents via a .png 1150X1733px image that is placed in the aircraft's/CHARTS folder.

 

Aerostar 601P_Clickboard 3.jpgAerostar 601P_Clickboard 4.jpg

 

I found I had to get in very close to read it, a scale feature would make it actually usable.

 

Lighting

There are only two in the nose landing lights, and no taxi. They are good straight ahead, but they are a bit compromised for taxiway turning...  they also shine slightly through the nose?

 

Aerostar 601P_Lighting 1.jpgAerostar 601P_Lighting 2.jpgAerostar 601P_Lighting 3.jpg

 

There is no beacon, but navigation, strobe and rear single white nav lighting is fine, there is a "Wing" switch, but I found no lighting on the wing(s) for ice.

 

Aerostar 601P_Lighting 5.jpgAerostar 601P_Lighting 4.jpg

 

Internal lighting is excellent. Unlike the daytime the instrument panel it is well lit, with excellent drop-down lighting adjustment on each side of the panel for each pilot...

 

Aerostar 601P_Lighting 6.jpgAerostar 601P_Lighting 7.jpg

 

....  overhead spot lighting is provided by two switchable lights on the roof...

 

Aerostar 601P_Lighting 8.jpgAerostar 601P_Lighting 9.jpg

 

...  and in the rear cabin there are four side wall mounted soft spotlights projecting down on to on each seat.

 

Aerostar 601P_Lighting 10.jpgAerostar 601P_Lighting 11.jpg

 

Liveries

One blank and seven liveries are provided including the N164HH "American Made" livery. The liveries are very good but not in the high-high quality range and the white seems to wash out a little on screen taking away some of the detail.

 

Aerostar 601P_Livery Blank.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery N164HH.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery N578P.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery N1271P.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery N602AC.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery N-710LC.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery N771LB.jpgAerostar 601P_Livery TG-LAU.jpg

 

Summary

In the areas of value and features you get a lot of aircraft for your money, and a very iconic aircraft at that as well with this Aerostar 601P from Avia71. And many of the features provided here are all very clever, very authentic to the era and to the aircraft and it's operations.

 

These include the complex pressurisation system, active circuit breaker panel, fuel system including X-FEED, Flap system, Century X Autopilot and authentic NARCO KWK 66 Weather display and SANDEL ST3400. Systems save parameters between flights in data and maintenance or can be set for just one flight and excellent menus with checklists, weight management, cabin altitude calculator, maintenance, stats and options.

 

Modeling is in context very good, but the white liveries tend to wash out the finer details, but the animated roof blinds and the very realistic weathered undercarriage are standouts. Negatives...  Some instruments can be dull in the daylight and a few avionic panels are hard to read, and the Airspeed dial is also hard to read with small numbers and increments. Handling is faintly light and touchy and you need time to adjust and tune into the distinctive feel and the out right speedof this aircraft. Sounds are overall FMOD good, but some sounds are chunk chunky. Is there a baggage door or two?

 

A few review aircraft that X-PlaneReviews fly become far more interesting the more time you spend with them, and certainly the Aerostar falls well into that category, it sort of goes deeper and deeper with the complex but interesting systems and the overwhelming great ideas that are at play here. And the more I fly and tune into the aircraft the more you really, really like it, so interesting to very interesting is the words to sum the aircraft up. In this price range then it is excellent value and it is quite different in a flying machine and the way that you even interact with it, but then again it is a Ted R Smith aircraft as well and he certainly made very different and interesting aircraft, so in that aspect the Avia71 Aerostar 601P certainly honors the legend of it's creator. Overall highly recommended.

 

______________________________________________________________________

 

X-Plane Store logo sm.jpg

 

Yes! the Piper Aerostar 601P by Avia71 is NOW available from the X-Plane.Org Store here :


Aerostar 601P

 

Price is US$34.95 (sale price is US$29.95! A Great deal for a US$35 aircraft)

  

Features

Ultra High Definition Model
  • 4K Textures throughout
  • Full PBR
  • High quality 3D model
  • Optimized for X-Plane 11
  • FMOD custom sounds
Features
  • Fully functional 3D cockpit
  • Custom menu containing checklists, weight management, cabin altitude calculator, maintenance, stats, options
  • Custom instruments
  • Custom pressurization system
  • Custom animations
  • Disengageable system for saving parameters between flights
  • Customizable documents holder (read your charts, checklists... in flight)
  • Custom fuel feeding system
  • Complete set of original checklists
  • 7 liveries + paintkit
Auto-Updater
  • Keep your aircraft up-to-date with SkunkCrafts auto-updater
  • Easy to use (nothing to do, really)
  • As usual, updates will be free of charge for customers

 

Requirements:

X-Plane 11

Windows, Mac, or Linux
2Gb VRAM Minimum, 4Gb+ VRAM Recommended

 

Installation
Download of the Aerostar 601P is 392.35mb and it is installed in your General Aviation Folder as a 551mb folder.
 
This aircraft uses the SkunkCrafts auto-updater for updates
 
Documents
 
  • Avia71_AEROSTAR_601P_Checklists.pdf
  • Avia71_AEROSTAR_601P_Manual.pdf

 

 

_____________________________________________________________________________________

 

Review by Stephen Dutton 
10th July 2018
Copyright©2018: X-PlaneReviews
 
(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)
 

Review System Specifications:

Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit - 16 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 512gb SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.25

Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini

Plugins: Environment Engine by xEnviro v1.07 US$69.90 : XPRealistic Pro v1.0.9  effects US$19.95 : WorldTraffic 3.0 Plugin - US$29.95

Scenery or Aircraft

- KRSW - Southwest Florida International Airport by Aerosoft  (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$24.95

- KDAB - Daytona Beach by Aerosoft / Stairport Sceneries (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$28.99

  

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Stephen, great review is always I greatly appreciate it.  Will I buy the aircraft at this time, Nope.  I do love my general aviation aircraft, but I will wait until the developer decides to put in my request (suggested) when it was in development, the Garman 1000 by LR.  I found once I eat steak (LR's G1000) I'm hard pressed to go back to non glass cockpits.  Unless of course the airplane is a really old like the DC 3 and such, then I don't have a problem with it.  Having it be a five passenger aircraft, would be a nice airplane for FS economy or flight-jobs.net when you start your flight career.  But unfortunately FS economy appears not to have an alias for this aircraft out of the box, so you have to use one comparable.  But as a fun flyer, this aircraft should be pretty cool.  

 

Sorry going off on a tangent for a reason :), my mindset is changing to more support smaller aircraft developers (such as this one) rather than the large ones (yes I'm looking at you Carenado), because I personally found, and Stephen maybe you have found the same.  Even if you tell the developer that you are more than willing to pay a little extra via a download such as an example Dan Klaus on his personal aircraft, the Quest Kodiak with the enhancements that included the floats and other features.  I was totally cool what that and happily gave him extra cash so I can land his aircraft on the water.  Why Carenado and other developers do not see the potential in producing extra content for extra cash is beyond me.  Especially when you have users such as myself who are more than willing to pay for them.  To me anyway, it gives me that sense of value for my original purchase.  So I guess the question is why can't some aircraft developers once they bring their product to market they do not enhance their product to provide more of a value for the buyer's purchase.  Another example I've been flying for the last few weeks the Carenado turbo commander 690B and been having a real good experience.  I reached out in the forums and asked Dan Klaus ( whether it's his fault are not I don't know, but I don't think so ) if Carenado had any plans in offering a G1000 cockpit for us to enjoy.  I even provided on the form (to keep it real), a photograph from a commander 690B that is currently for sale as of this post at controller.com.  But sadly his response was there was no plans and after reflecting on all of my Carenado purchases, I realized that they do not enhance their aircraft at all.  They will keep it updated for every update of X-Plane, but not enhancing their products such as I described.  And because of this behavior, now me as a customer have to be very cautious or expect that if I buy their products in the future (which more than likely, I will).  I now understand, once you buy their product it is done and do not expect anything beyond it, which to me is disappointing.

 

So in closing the reason why I dictated the paragraph above was to illustrate aircraft developers behavior and for the new user who is coming to the X-Plane family, to be advised of this tribal knowledge.  Now I know some people are gonna think that I'm just making noise, and that is fine you have your opinion.  But I look at it that this is my contribution to the community, and to keep your eyes wide open so the new user can have the best experience possible in our community.  All feedback is welcome and I am sure I will get criticism, and that's OK.  Cheers and thank you very much for taking the time to read this, and I know it's long and I apologize for that.

Dion Markgraf
AKA:Dionsol
Flight Simulation (X-Plane 11 Pilot) & Aviation Enthusiast
Owner operator Solice Wings VA on
FS Economy & flight-jobs.net networks

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As a long time RW pilot I do still enjoy the "steam gauges," particularly when the prototype for the X-Plane model was so equipped.  Sure the G1000 is nice, but I certainly don't need or want to see it in everything.

 

My inflation-adjusted $0.02.  😉

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