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Old Guy

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Old Guy last won the day on November 12 2017

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About Old Guy

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    The Old Spec-5
  • Birthday 02/27/1947

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    Columbia Falls, MT

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  1. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    I figured it might be a javascript issue. I don't even have JS on my PC. Haven't for a year or more. At first I ran across a fair number of sites with videos I couldn't play, but that number has decreased to practically nothing lately. The Web in general has moved to other formats. The reading I've done over the last week or so about aviation triggered memories of my ATC days. The language of air traffic control is called "phraseology" and it is highly structured, partly because radio communications were uncertain in the early days and partly to make instructions clear to non-English speaking pilots by requiring certain words to be used to describe very specific actions. For instance, when a pilot request landing at an airfield, he will usually know the active runway by listening to airport information regularly broadcast on a separate channel or by simply listening to the tower frequency for a short while before reporting in. He would call using his aircraft N-number (boldly painted on the wings and tail) or using his company callsign or assigned military callsign. Civil aircraft would be N12345, for example, a civil air carrier would be something like United 345 (written as UA345), and a Navy F-14 might be Flyboy 34 or some other designation. The military also uses simple callsigns like Army 12345, the numbers being those painted on the aircraft. There are odd exceptions. BOAC flight 567 was known as Speedbird 567, for reasons related to their early adoption of jet aircraft. Whether that's still the case or not, I don't know. Back in the Cold War days SR-71 flights were not contacted at all, but merely tracked by radar across the country. If you had to contact a Blackbird it was an emergency. I only had to do it once. Sample landing phraseology: "Vinh Long Tower, Stingray 6 is a flight of two Cobras ten miles south for landing." "Stingray 6, Vinh Long, enter left base runway 24, altimeter 3-0-0-2, report base." (we almost always had aircraft enter the traffic pattern on downwind or base, unless they were in position to make a straight-in approach to the active runway. In that case we had them come straight-in unless we had too much traffic to allow that.) "Roger, Ving Long, altimeter 3-0-0-2." (Once the controller has give the local altimeter and the pilot acknowledged it, he would only repeat it if it changed during the approach) "Vinh Long, Stingray 6 on base." "Stingray 6, in sight, you're number two behind the C-47 on final." (If the plane had retractable gear, the controller would ask for a report of "gear down". The Cobra's gear is, of course, down and welded.) "Stingray 6 has the Gooney in sight." "Stingray 6, cleared to land runway 24." (The first airplane has landed and cleared the runway, so Cobra 6 can be cleared to land) "Stingray 6, roger." Although Stingray is a flight of two the flight is handled as a single aircraft. The pilots in a flight are responsible for their own separation at all times, even during landing. This is a normal feature of military flying and is known as MARSA (Military Assumes Responsibility for Separation of Aircraft). Controllers and pilots were both known to use non-standard phraseology. The correct method for vectoring an aircraft to a navigational aid went something like this: "United 345 fly heading 270 until receiving the Farmington VOR then proceed direct Farmington and flight plan route." Actual language: "United 270 fly heading 270 to Farmington, then proceed direct." Everything else was understood by both parties. Nevertheless, if you used that example during your periodic evaluation you'd get a slap on the wrist. Jeez. Old memories. Sorry for running on. OG
  2. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    Amazing what a bit of research will do. I did some searching on "overhead approaches" and discovered that even military pilots disagree on exactly what that is. Current practice seems to be to fly a short upwind, fairly close to the active runway, followed by a hard 180 deg turn across the active (generally at 1000-1500 AGL), thus entering a shortened downwind leg, then base turn and final. Fighters may begin the approach in various formations, but each pilot breaks a few seconds behind the leader, which results in the entire flight entering downwind properly spaced for landing. This is not the approach I saw used when I was a military controller, nor was it used at any air show I attended during the 70s. The approach I described early in this thread was common practice by AF and Navy aviators at that time. Things change. OG PS: Dude, I can watch YouTube videos with no problem, so the issue may be something to do with my security. For instance, I don't have javascript installed. That prevents me from seeing some videos, although other formats are more common and I have no problem with them. How that might affect the Csim embedded videos, I have no idea.
  3. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    Cap didn't do an overhead approach. He flew an abbreviated upwind, then pitched left into a downwind, then base leg, and final approach. Absolutely standard, but not an overhead approach. They need an ATC guy to correct their phraseology. 🙄 OG
  4. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    Making a flawless overhead approach is a matter of pride for Navy and Air Force pilots. Spacing has to be perfect, the breaks absolutely identical, and the circling approach exactly the same. I'll check out some of Cap's videos. For some reason I can't see any of the videos posted here. What format are they? OG
  5. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    Hah! Yeah. I've seen that same footage at least a thousand times. What really irks me are errors that even a few minutes of research would have corrected. Even recent WW2 movies get a lot of details wrong -- and even some major stuff. Some can't be helped. I watched a British detective show the other day in which a Spitfire at an air show was identified as a Spit II, even though it had a 4-blade prop and was obviously a later mark. In a WW2 documentary I saw yesterday the images were supposed to be of Marines at Guadalcanal, yet the soldiers were all wearing Army equipment and one was carrying a carbine. Probably not many people would have noticed. OG
  6. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    My stories mostly take place in that place where fiction meets reality, with unpredictable results. No dinosaurs, though. Dragons, yeah. Flying monkeys. Purgatory complete with the Simbiotic Saloon. Martians seeking rubber duckies. Ordinary stuff like that. Just an adjunct to our world. Nothing odd at all. OG
  7. Old Guy

    OG wanders into DCS World

    No can do DCS. My computer won’t handle it. Even with everything graphical set to Low, the game stops and starts constantly. The game forums make it clear that DCS is a resource hog. If I decide to upgrade my rig later this year I may try it again. OG
  8. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    I think in the case of Griffin's book it was an editorial oversight. The author knows perfectly well how runway numbers are set. My wife refuses to sit through military movies or documentaries with me, as I can't keep myself from muttering about the inaccuracies. And don't get me started on the firearms used in most western flicks. OG
  9. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    Aviation phraseology is highly standardized across the world. It has to be, given the amount of long distance flying done since way back when. There are a couple of international organizations responsible for setting aviation standards and enforcing them. I’m sure places like North Korea don’t comply, but even idiots like them must follow standardized practices when operating internationally. For the same reasons airport procedures have to be fairly consistent everywhere that handles international flights. WEB Griffin is usually very good with technical details, but in one of his books a controller instructed a pilot to land on “runway 39”. 🤯😳🙄
  10. Old Guy

    Odd errors

    I run across errors in written and video materials all the time, especially those concerned with aviation and military history. Mostly I let them pass without comment, except to myself. When working through a DCS World tutorial on approach and landing I noticed a glaring error in their description of the approach and landing sequence for aircraft in the game. They described the full approach including Upwind, Crosswind, Downwind, Base, and Final legs, which was okay except they called that the Overhead Approach. Two errors here. Hardly ever does anyone use the full normal approach procedure. Most often aircraft enter on Downwind or do a Straight-in approach. Airports with multiple parallel runways almost never use an Upwind leg for normal traffic. Okay, minor error. They obviously took that info from published descriptions and not from actual pilots. To complicate matters, that isn't an Overhead Approach. An Overhead is performed, normally by military aircraft, by flying straight-in to the airport at pattern altitude (usually 1,000' AGL) and performing a Break as they cross the approach end of the runway. They then make a descending circle, lowering gear and flaps as they do so, and end up at short final fully prepared to land. Performed by a flight of four, it is a beautiful thing to see. Okay, only an ex-controller and aviation enthusiast would have caught that. Sorry. On another note, I was reading Ambrose's Citizen Soldiers and discovered a few minor issues and one obvious mistake. He was describing the vast scale of American industrial output and mentioned that Henry Ford's Willow Run plant turned out a B-17 every hour. Right factory, wrong plane. Henry's plant produced thousands of B-24s. Not one B-17. You get the picture. That kind of error should not appear in a history book. There were other mistakes as well, but that's the one that stood out in my mind. Any other OCD readers out there? OG
  11. Old Guy

    OG wanders into DCS World

    Okay, so I downloaded DCS World and started into the learning cliff (some call it a curve -- NOT!). Now that I've successfully turned several TF-51 aircraft into aluminum waste, I have to say the sim is likeable, if complex. I did have some problems with the taxi and takeoff tutorials. In the taxi lesson the vehicle you're supposed to follow never appears until you're already rolling past the first taxiway. I ran it three times before I gave up on the vehicle and just . . . taxied. In the takeoff tutorial the throttle inputs were courtesy the numpad + and - buttons, which would have been okay except each press of the key applied way too much throttle. Again, after several failed attempts, I disregarded the instructor and took off on my own. Successfully. Clearly, as far as general feel for the controls in concerned, previous flight sim experience helps. The DCS World section on Csim is quiet. Not much going on there. Where is the best place to link up with other players -- other than the DCS forums? What about a controller? I'm using a TM Flight stick X. I'm sure there's something better out there. Is anyone actually making an FF stick? The game supports FF. My old Microsoft FF stick expired long ago. I'm off to do some reading and research. OG
  12. Old Guy

    Very Cheeky

    Donnie would like to be an arch-criminal or even a butt crack bad guy. Fortunately, the first view of a woman with larger than usual boobs would stop him in his tracks. And cause temporary paralysis. I can see the news story (page 3, below the ads): "Robbery Stopped by Out of Work Pole Dancer" "I was just walking into the bank when this guy came running out and just squeaked and fell down. I think I've seen him down at the club." OG
  13. Old Guy

    Tales of an aging gamer....

    Now there's a coincidence. My eldest daughter was born in the hospital at Opp back in 1969. Long story. Yes, the helicopters were from Rucker. There were training fields all over that part of Alabama, and even down in Florida. I worked stage fields in the summer of 1966, including Marianna and Malone, Florida. In about September I was transferred to Hanchey Army Heliport, then the largest (and busiest) helicopter airfield in the world. We had about 100 TH-13s and probably that many UH-1s of various flavors, along with some CH-47s, CH-34s, and even a few CH-37s (big beast, two large radial engines, left a trail of oil smoke wherever it went). OG
  14. Old Guy

    Tales of an aging gamer....

    Hey! Helicopters aren't ugly. Well, some of them anyway. I think the original Huey Cobra AH-1G was a damn fine looking machine. Mind you, I was a lot better looking then as well. Allegedly. Possibly. In my imagination. OG
  15. Old Guy

    Tales of an aging gamer....

    Hah! Reminded me of a story I don't think I've told here. Sit down, Donnie! Back when I was a lowly PFC air traffic controller at Fort Rucker, I spent a lot of time at training fields working traffic. Mostly I worked fields where the students were learning the ropes in the Huey. One day when lunch time came I went down to the operations building, which functioned as a mess hall. I noticed a single UH-1D hovering about 200 meters from the building and wondered about it, as it was raining cats and dogs (this is Alabama, after all). Inside, I heard one of the instructors explaining the situation to the flight commander. "I told him to forget lunch. He's gonna hover that sonofabitch until I tell him to stop. Maybe then he'll keep his head out of his ass." Or words to that effect. I have no idea if the student eventually graduated or not. That reminds me . . . Okay, Donnie. Jeez. Maybe some other time. OG
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