Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Hi guys,

It's been a while since my last post so hello to everyone again. So uh yeah I have a severe and I mean severe problem with controlling trim. I do not know what the hell is going on. I get to my assigned altitude and heading etc, and I notice on the artificial horizon that I'm in the brown or either too high in the blue. So I know the forces of flight must change elevator surface so I know I have to change it. I keep trimming and trimming and trimming with no result, sometimes it doesn't even have any effect.

How sensitive is trim on jets like the A321 or the 737-800? Is it like 3 clicks and your done kinda thing? Or are ya pumping it up just watching the wheel turn about 100 times?? I've had numerous flights ruined all because of trimming. My nose can be pointing 5 or even 10 degrees down and im ascending... seriously what the hell? Can someone please explain to me exactly how this works and how to apply the correct changes.

Thanks in advance,

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Pro Member Chief Captain
CRJCapt Chief Captain

I'll assume that you're flying with a joy stick, if not, stop and get one.

The Trim System is designed to trim away unwanted force from the controls(your joy stick) to relieve pilot workload. Some very old aircraft don't even have a trim system. Don't try to fly the aircraft with trim, if your nose attitude is 5 degrees too low than use joy stick(Elevator) to raise it. Once you've gotten the aircraft to the correct attitude, use the elevator trim to relieve the force so that when you release pressure on the stick, it will center but the aircraft will stay near the correct position. Trim is not an autopilot and won't hold the aircraft in the correct position for long, it's not designed to. You have to make continuous small inputs to a correctly trimmed aircraft(you must Fly). Elevator trim is used very often and should be assigned to a button that is easily accessible by your flying hand. Any time the Airspeed, Attitude or the Altitude of the aircraft is changed, you have to trim. Aileron trim is almost never used, coming into play only with fuel imbalance or emergency single engine flight. Rudder trim is seldom used, coming into play mostly on high powered, single engine propeller aircraft during long climbs and all multi-engine aircraft during single engine flight.

The trim should not take long to take effect, there is however no certain amount of clicks. Check your Elevator trim for dual assignments that would interfere with correct operation and check that the repeat rate is set to 50% of travel. If your aircraft is climbing with the nose 5 degrees down, you may have a problem with the programing of the aircraft(outside of severe turbulence), the Flight model of many free aircraft is suspect.

Last edited by CRJCapt on Sat Feb 03, 2007 3:09 pm, edited 1 time in total
Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Hey CRJCapt,

Thanks for the reply. Yeah I'm using a joystick and I don't ever use any custom aircraft models. I found lastnight that the trim controls on the Boeing 737-800 are brilliant and very easy to use, although the same can't be said for the A321. On the A321 I find myself trimming a seemingly endless amount for a small correction. It's still going to take awhile to get used to, and I really want to be able to trim for a 500 fpm decent for landing... Nightmare! By the time I concentrate on getting it trimmed for 500 fpm my heading and altitude especially go all wrong. Then I'll start panicking trying to get the localizer centered, and of course the GS.

But yeah if it is programming of the aircraft when I'm using Microsoft aircraft.. I'm rather worried.


Pro Member Chief Captain
CRJCapt Chief Captain

Something you wrote made me think. I'm not sure if it's programed in FSX(I don't have FSX)but it's worth a look.

Real Airbus aircraft have a side stick that features auto trimming with no elevator trim button, they simply move the stick to the desired position and after a certain pause(trims for 1G) the trim system adjusts. If the trim wheel moves with stick movement, autopilot and auto-throttles off, then it may have auto trim. Check at an airspeed between 170-230 KIAS, flaps up, less than 5,000 feet MSL. Just move the stick to a position, hold it and watch the trim wheel for movement.

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