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how much you hand fly your jet?

Pro Member Captain
nottobe Captain

I find hand flying a jet is rather difficult especially at manoeuvers. and the throttle delay makes it worse. with no need for VFR, how much you hand fly?

15 Responses

Pro Member Chief Captain
Alex (Fire_Emblem_Master) Chief Captain

Usually about 25-30% of the flight is hand-flown. It just takes LOTS of practice, believe me, lots! Mainly autopilot in my jets is used for cruise climb, cruise, and descent. Takeoff, initial climb, approach and landing is manual for me. I always have the autopilot and autothrottle programmed just in case 😕

Pro Member Chief Captain
Matthew Shope (mypilot) Chief Captain

I use it only on long hauls when i have to go to the bathroom or take a nap or something else. I always keep it handy though. Practice makes perfect. 😉

Pro Member Chief Captain
Solotwo Chief Captain

Usually only hand fly when landing and take off, and lining up with the runway if the ATC is acting retarded. When I'm cruising I'm usually multi-tasking with many other things.

Pro Member Chief Captain
Matthew Shope (mypilot) Chief Captain

When I get home from school, i'll set up a flight to SEA or something and put it on autopilot when at cruising altitude and do homework. I only use autopillot for cruise.

Pro Member Captain
Micah Captain

i always prefer to handfly, but if im on a particularly long flight, i will cruise with autopilot as makes things easier sometimes!!

Micah 😉

Pro Member First Officer
fourby First Officer

Fire_Emblem_Master wrote:

Usually about 25-30% of the flight is hand-flown. It just takes LOTS of practice, believe me, lots! Mainly autopilot in my jets is used for cruise climb, cruise, and descent. Takeoff, initial climb, approach and landing is manual for me. I always have the autopilot and autothrottle programmed just in case 😕

My hand/manual controlled flights are very much the same as FEM 😉

Pro Member First Officer
JTH First Officer

Fire_Emblem_Master wrote:

Usually about 25-30% of the flight is hand-flown. It just takes LOTS of practice, believe me, lots! Mainly autopilot in my jets is used for cruise climb, cruise, and descent. Takeoff, initial climb, approach and landing is manual for me. I always have the autopilot and autothrottle programmed just in case 😕

Is this how a pilot would do it in real life? Fly manually for maybe the first and last 10 mins of flight?

By the way, why not use autoland if the aircraft and airport support it?

Pro Member Chief Captain
Matthew Shope (mypilot) Chief Captain

The reason is because it is alot funner to handfly it. I have done a couple flights completely on autopilot for the sake of learning how it works.

Pro Member Chief Captain
CrashGordon Chief Captain

I will usually hand fly for a reasonable amount after takeoff and then set the autopilot. Autothrottle gets set a bit sooner so I don't exceed 250 KIAS. Some where between 10 and 20 miles out, I'll resume hand flying.

I also do training flights entirely by hand. for example, my 737 training flight is from KLAX to KPHX or KPHX to KLAX , using nothing but sectional charts and visual landmarks to navigate by.

Pro Member Chief Captain
Michael Thomas (SteveT) Chief Captain

I hand fly my takeoff and as soon as I take-off I set the AP for cruise and descent and for landing when im about 10nm out i take the controls and perform ver smooth landings 😉

Pro Member Chief Captain
Alex (Fire_Emblem_Master) Chief Captain

Is this how a pilot would do it in real life? Fly manually for maybe the first and last 10 mins of flight?

By the way, why not use autoland if the aircraft and airport support it?

A lot of times it depends on the pilot's prefrence. I know from experience that I CAN hand-fly 100% of a B757-200 flight, but I have over 1000 hours in on it, no real-world experience though.

It's just my little "thing" that makes it fun for me.

My thing with Autoland is kind of the "old dog/New Trick" saying. I've never used AL, and I cant really say that I needed it real bad. High wind landings suck as far as difficulty, I've botched plenty and needed to go round... Embarassed

Pro Member First Officer
Tartanaviation First Officer

I like to fly realisticly so for small single prop engines i always hand fly. If it is something like a 737 or something of similar caliber, i like to use autopilot for climb/cruise/descend. I use the FMC all the time in the PMDG model so it takes out alot of work during these stages. I hand fly the bigger aircraft, like many people, during taxi, take-off, initial climb-out, final approach and landing.

Pro Member Chief Captain
Manuel Agustin Clausse (Agus0404) Chief Captain

I only hand fly my aircrafts during takeoff, climb-out, final approach, and landing. When the visibility is too low I use the autoland system.

Pro Member First Officer
Michael_H First Officer

I only hand fly my aircrafts during takeoff, climb-out, final approach, and landing. When the visibility is too low I use the autoland system.

That's pretty much the way I do it most of the time...

Pro Member Captain
PanAmerican Captain

I fly my jet during takeoff all the way up to cruising altitude and I land the plane no matter what the weather is like.

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