IFR problem

Pro Member Trainee
mark1234 Trainee

I've decided to start learning more about navigation and read up on VOR and IFR.

After taking the flight lessons in FS2004 and reading some of the forums I have been able to figure a lot of the navigation out.

However, when I use IFR navigation I can't seem to get the vertical and horizontal lines to direct me on the correct heading and glide slope.

Prior to departing Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada (CYXX) I set the NAV 1 radio to 110.70 Mhz (and yes, I did put it on the left primary station) and turn on the NAV1 button at the bottom of the radio stack in the Boeing 737.

Then I set the course in AP to 260 to match runway 26L at my destination (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada - CYVR). I also disengaged the autopilot when I has approximately half way through the flight and took over manually.

I ensured that the NAV/GPS switch was on NAV.

Shortly after takeoff and inbound to CYVR I pick up the Morse code being transmitted on frequency 110.70 Mhz.

The pink vertical and horizontal lines show up on the attitude indicator but they do not accurately direct me to the correct heading or glide slope.

Also, I made sure that my airspeed did not exceed 180.

Can somebody please tell me what I am missing or doing incorrectly?

Your help is greatly appreciated!

Thank you!

Answers 8 Answers

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I think I catch your drif there. When you say "pink lines", do you mean the glideslope indicators, (little pink needles)?

If so, this is how they work. The one on the right, (vertical indicator), tells you how high or low you are in relation to the designated arrival zone. It also gives you the adequate decent rate a pilot must remain at when coming into large airports, in order to avoid tall buildings, etc. When the needle is above the center dot, then you are low. On the one right above the center, means your slightly low, and at the very top means too low. Vice versa for the bottom. I hope this helps you. If you were referring to something else though, then please clarify it and we'll all try to help you out.

Pro Member Trainee
mark1234 Trainee

Yes, I am questioning why the glideslope indicatiors appear but do not accurately direct me to the runway.

For example if the vertal line is to the right turn right but the runway is actually to the left.

I don't know what I am doing wrong.

It would really be helpful if someone could give me step by step directions to match this IFR flight plan.


Pro Member First Officer
Michael_H First Officer

Fly off runway 25 to the west..Set your heading to runway heading and fly straight out until you reach your cruising alt , say 2000 feet. Then start a right turn until you intercept the localizer about 15 to 20 miles out from YVR approx. You'll watch the approach reference pointer I have circled in the picture. It will give you the localizer position relative to the airplane.
When it starts moving to the left, you make your turn onto the runway heading 260 degrees.

Once you are lined up, you can do the autopilot approach by clicking on APP button if you find you can't control the approach manually.
When you intercept the glideslope from below, the other pointer on the right (the vertical pointer which indicates the glideslope position) will become active and start to move down.

Hope this helps


Last edited by Michael_H on Mon Oct 03, 2005 5:23 pm, edited 2 times in total


Hate to ask a dumb question, but you're not flying directly toward the VOR heading, and then expecting the ILS to pick you up, are you? My strategy is to use the GPS map as much as needed. When about 30 miles or so out, I make sure to turn so that I'm at a 90 degree angle from the runway; when about 20 miles, I turn to 45 degrees from the runway heading. Then I watch the gllidescope carefully and wait for it start moving -(I also use the GPS - zoomed in so I can see the feathers - so I can get an idea of when the final turn is coming up). Once moving I intercept, and then use ILS to guide me in. Quite fun and satisfying to keep those needles centered.....

Is this close to what you're doing??


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

mark1234 wrote:

For example if the vertal line is to the right turn right but the runway is actually to the left.

Do you mean the horizontal line, right?

In that case, when you see the the localizer indicator (pink line moving horizontally) moving to the right it means that you are going to the right of the runway and you need to turn left to face the runway.

Pro Member First Officer
Steve (megafoot) First Officer

I'm thinking that you meant to say "ILS" (Instrument Landing System) when you refered to it talking about glideslope and such. you said "IFR" which refers to Instrument Flight Rules which applies to flying around using only your instruments as a guide (of which ILS is a part of) and also taking vectors and instructions from air traffic control.

If you mean to say that you are using the ILS pips to hand fly into the runway then disregard this next bit, if you are refering to an automated ILS approach then read on.

your autopilot needs to be on and once you intercept the glideslope you need to set the autopilot to approach [APP] for the navigational system to catch the vertical glideslope.

Think of the correct heading/glideslope as a laser beam coming from the foot of the intended runwayat the correct angle for aircraft to touchdown from.

if the beam is at 260 degrees and you are a half mile to the right or left of that laser beam and you are flying the laser beam's same exact direction (260 degrees) you are flying parallel to it and will never ever cross its path to allow your sensors to pick it up.

you need to cross the beam at a slight angle (horizontal) to the beam and intercept the beam from underneath by flying into it at a level altitude.

try crossing the beam from either the left or right from about 20-30 degrees off of the beam's course [AP on and in nav mode with correct runway setting on the dial (not the heading dial, the other dial)]and make sure that you are crossing the beam with the vertical indicator at the top which means you are under the beam. once the autopilot lines you up and the vertical pip is still above the center line then fo into approach mode [APP].

your equipment (if properly set up for ILS) will catch the beam first from the side and then from underneath and if your throttle/flaps/gear/spoilers are all in the correct mode you will be in an ideal situation for a nice landing.

Remember that ILS is not an "autoland" system, you will still need to take over before touchdown by disconnecting the AP and flairing the aircraft by hand using your own skills.

Pro Member Trainee
mark1234 Trainee

I finally figured some of this navigation stuff out thanks to input from all of you.

Now all I have to do is practice for the next 500 hours!

Pro Member Chief Captain
Alex (Fire_Emblem_Master) Chief Captain

This may sound dumb, and I dont know if it's been talked about, but I noticed you said that the ILS doesn't direct you to the runway. It won't right away, you need to use the instructions given to you by ATC to first get you pointed in the correct direction, then if you've tuned the NAV1 radio for the ILS frequency, you should hear morse code confirmation that you hvae the correct frequency tuned.
Then, wait untill the ILS bugs/needles start to move before you turn. If you're coming toward the runway from the right side, wait untill the needle starts to slide leftbefore you turn, otherwise it'll just stay all the way to the right.

if this doesn't make sense to you, ignore it, it makes perfect sense to me, but I guess I'd hvae to record a video to show it properly.

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