Today the plane I’m used to fly was in maintenance for the annual inspection so I had to change my schedule and I tried one hour an half in the simulator. The simulator at AvStar Aviation is a fixed seat (no rolling etc.) made by Precision Flight Control and simulates the Cessna 172 with a Garmin G1000. The system is based on X-plane flight simulator, a simulator I used for many years and I really like also in his non FAA version I used on my mac. X-plane is very realistic and available also on Mac OSX and Linux. The cost for the last home version is less than 80$ and the scenery is impressive. It worth to be bought, but as usual with fly simulators you need a fast computer to enjoy it.
Back to the simulator at AvStar, it’s a very nice way to learn the G1000 since you have the exact replica in front of you and you can play with it and try all the functions without the risk to do it really flying. We did some instrument flight, and this is what that simulator is good to. All the experience is pretty realistic, is very useful to learn the instrument scanning. For the unusual attitudes is nice but lacking the movement and the disorientation effect is not enough to really learn it.
It was a fun thing to do and is really a perfect tool to learn the G1000, so I decided to use it again later on my training when I will learn and try the advanced tools of the Garmin panel. For now I still prefer the real feeling of the plane for what I have to do, and it simulates the 172, so no prop control, and I want to concentrate on the use of propeller control and the parameters of the 182 and not be confused going back to the 172 speeds etc.
Other than that I spent some time with my instructor Sherri and Carl Weiss (the owner of AvStar Aviation) watching some aviation humor videos on Youtube and laughing a lot! This is a very nice side of the training and makes me appreciate more this flight school. Is really nice to be able to spend some time just having fun!
I took some pictures in the school today, one serious to show the flight simulator and some details of decorations on the wall just to give you the feeling of the “mood” at AvStar. It’s really fun, also if they are very dedicated to teach safety and apply safety in the rules and the way they maintain the airplanes, it does not mean that can’t be do having fun :)
Here some pictures :)