Monday, October 22, 2018

E-2C Hawkeye / C-2A Beta Release - How to apply for Beta Testing


I know that some of you have been waiting for this post for quite a while ;-) !
Applications to join to the E-2C Hawkeye / C-2A Greyhound Package Beta Testing are now CLOSED.

Here are the minimum requirements:

Simulator: FSX (Acceleration/Gold/Steam Editions), P3D (all versions). NOTE: TACPACK IS NOT SUPPORTED IN THE INITIAL RELEASE (some functions are implemented but not all)
OS: Windows, any version suitable for the simulators above
CPU: Multicore 2.4GHz
GPU: Nvidia 760 or better. Should work with 1.5Gb dedicated video memory.
RAM: 3Gb
HD: 1.4Gb needed for installation

I am looking for different computer specs and for user of different skill levels/knowledge of the aircraft.
This is not a paid position - if you want to join the test, the only thing you will get is the fun of testing a new product!
If you want to apply for the testing you should drop an email to as follows:

Subject of the email must be: E-2 C-2 Beta Testing (I am always surprised how hard this seems to be ;-) )

The email shall contain:
- Which simulator you intend to use for the testing (please specify the EXACT version)
- Your system OS/CPU/GPU/RAM (no printouts/screenshots - just list these. Also, I do not need other details or verbose system description)
- Your real life flight experience and/or simulation experience (just a couple of lines please!)
- Any special reason for which you want to test these planes or any special link you have with these models.

As usual, I will be a certain number (around 20) testers - I am sorry for those who will be left out, but too much feedback is detrimental: the test team size must be manageable.
The Beta is not ready yet… but it will be ready soon. It may take a while to read all the applications and reply, but if you do not receive a reply before the end of the month, most likely you have not been selected (sorry!)!

If you will be selected you will receive an email with the download link and some Beta testing directions… ONE IMPORTANT THING I ALWAYS SAY TO TESTERS (but apparently very few read): PLEASE TAKE YOUR TIME BEFORE SUBMITTING FEEDBACK. HAVE A GOOD READ AT THE MANUAL AND FLY AT LEAST 2 OR 3 HOURS WITH THESE MODELS BEFORE SENDING ANY FEEBACK.


Monday, October 15, 2018

SIAI Marchetti S-211 / Aermacchi M-311 / M-345 / M-345 HET PAINT KIT

Upon request, here is the paint kit for the payware S-211/M-311/M-345 package (actually I had already uploaded it on my Google Drive and sent it upon request).
Files are provided in layered PSD format - with separate layers form mechanical details, servicing decals, rivets, panel lines and ambient occlusion.

A sample file is provided for each of the 3 visual models (S-211, M-311/M-345 prototypes and M-345 HET) - this should be enough for most repainters to work proficiently.
Just remember that the M-311 and -345 have ventral fins which the S-211 does not have, and then the M-345HET has longer fuselage and different air intakes.

The paintkit is also valid for the freeware S-211 for Aerofly FS2 and for the future S-211 for X-Plane 11.

These files are provided for free to repainters ONLY to create new liveries for the S-211/M-311/M-345 and M-345HET model: any other usage is prohibited.

As usual, you can download the paintkit by either clicking HERE or from the menu on the side bar.


As some of you have requested it, here is the paint kit for the payware F-35 Lightning II.

Files are provided in layered PSD format as follows (layer structure top to bottom):
- Ambient Occlusion: multiply layer that superimposed the precalculated ambient occlusion shadows
- GreyToneForMarkings: darken layer to set the brightest grey tone in the livery. This was introduced to dim all the markings as they were too bright.
- Nation specific color: normal layer with the full livery; a sample for each nation is provided. All layers are blanked by default. You can delete the portions you do not need and merge it with the base color layer below.
- Base color: clean livery with only base markings for servicing.

These files are provided for free to repainters ONLY to create new liveries for the F-35.
Any other usage of these files, included but not limited to, applying these texture to other F-35 models is prohibited.
Repaints created with this package can be freely distributed

As usual you can download it by clicking HERE or from the menu on the side bar.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

SIAI Marchetti S-211 for Aerofly FS2 - Freeware Beta Release

It is clear to me that I will not have the time, at least for several months, to bring the SIAI-Marchetti S.211 for Aerofly FS2 to the same level of quality of the FSX/Prepar3D version.
But if there is a thing I despise is wasting my work.
So I decided to release it "as is" as freeware for everybody to enjoy.
"As is" means that is it still somewhat incomplete: that is radios, the navigation instruments and some gauges are not working and the flight model is "decent" but far from the flight manual accuracy of the FSX/P3D version.
Also, steering the aicraft on the ground is quite difficult (the real aircraft does not have a steering wheel, and so does the AFS2 version...but differential braking does not work that well in my implementation).
Do not expect any kind of support from my side - as usual I'll try to help if I can, but this product is not officially supported.
Thinking about it, I believe this is the very first third party aircraft for AFS2. While the sim itself is not yet as complete as P3D or XP11, it offers a great VR experience and unsurpassed performance (well above 120 frames per second on the highest settings on my system) and wonderful photoreal sceneries. And then there are ORBX addons.

Anyway, this model features:

- Detailed visual model of SIAI-Marchetti S-211
- Visually detailed virtual cockpit, with basic functionality and preliminary night lighting
- Multiple liveries including JPATS, Phililppine Air Force and Singapore Air Force
- Basic, easy to fly flight model

To install the package you should drag and drop the S211 folder contained in the zip file to either the "addons/aircraft" or the "aircraft" subfolders of you Aerofly USER folder.

By default your AFS2 user folder is the Documents folder - you can copy-paste this shortcut to get there.

C:\Users\%USERNAME%\Documents\Aerofly FS 2

You can download the S-211 for Aerofly FS2 by clicking HERE or from the FREEWARE section on the side bar.

Monday, October 8, 2018

C-2 Greyhound / E-2 Hawkeye Beta


RELEASED ON: 20/10/2018

RED - High priority change - this is can be considered a major defect by most users. All "Red" issues must be addressed or mitigated before the product release.
YELLOW - Medium priority change - some users may perceive these issues as a significant product defect. All "Yellow" issues should be addressed or mitigated before the product release.
GREEN - Low priority change - a very limited number of users may perceive this as a product defect. These issues shall be documented and dealt with if possible. Also, change requests or proposals implemented. 
BLUE - Suggestions for changes, additions or improvements.

LIGHT GRAY - Change request rejected -> this means that, in reply to a bug report, we have checked the product against the design intent and/or the flight manual and we do not think that the product is defective. This is left in the bugs list just for reference to other testers.

LIST UPDATED ON 1211/2018 01:30 AM CET
PROGRESS: 92% :-) !

EX001 - Suggestion to add Mouse Areas to external model to open doors / fold wings / rotodome activation (will work only on later versions of P3D) -> Implemented on C-2
EX002 - C-2 Models, exhaust on left side has missing cap end geometry. Action: fix 3D model - fixed in Beta 2 model
EX003 - C-2 Models. wire antenna not attached to vertical stabilizer: Action: fix 3D model - Fixed in Beta 2 model

EX004 - E-2 Models. wire antenna not attached to horizontal stabilizer: Action fix 3D model - Fixed in Beta 2 model
EX005 - Flap clip exhaust at maximum deflection: Action fix 3D models - Fixed in Beta 2 model
EX006 - E-2 Models, aileron actuation mechanism not attached to wings: Action fix 3D model - Fixed in Beta 2 model.
EX007 - Tire texture is interrupted, need rework. - Fixed on all models.
EX008 - Underwing USN Roundel on E-2 model upside down. - Fixed in Beta 2 textures
EX009 - Request to add "jury strut" to the model -> IN PROGRESS: Implement on C-2, will work on the E-2 next. - Applied to all models.
EX010 - Request to allow the opening of the E-2 rear hatch -> Implemented on Beta 2
EX012 - Landing gear extension/retraction time appears too slow. Should be around 4 seconds, but check flight manual. - From E-2 Flight manual (Para 2.10.4 "Main Gear" and 2.10.5 "Nose Gear") "Time allowed for gear to retract is 10 seconds, and 15 seconds for the gear to extend." - current Landing gear cycle time is 7-8 seconds, therefore no action is taken. -> NO ACTION
EX013 - Wing folding too fast. Should be 18 seconds, versus the current 13. -> Fixed in Beta 2: set to 18 seconds. -> tweaks needed as it now also includes jury strut locking.
EX014 - Tail hook does not touch the ground. -> anmation capped by 3D model. Need to rework the gear first. -> FIXED on all models in Beta2.
EX015 - Rotating radome too fast (animation speed should be about half of the current one). -> Fixed in Beta 2: radome rotation speed halved.
EX016 - Pitch on the ground is too "nose down" with respect to actual pictures. IN PROGRESS - now slightly better on the C-2, E-2 not implemented yet. - Not completely fixed, but somewhat mitigated on all models.
EX017 - Number on nose gear door of VAW-123 texture is upside down - FIXED
EX018 - Mistake in the "WALK" engine texture on E-2 model. - FIXED and recompiled all engine nacelles textures. 
EX019 - Light leakage on C-2 model when main gear doors are open

VC001 - Minor texture glitch in the PROP ANTI ICE gauge - FIXED PRIOR TO BETA RELEASE
VC002 - OBS Knob not operational on analog cockpits (FSX) - FIXED PRIOR TO BETA RELEASE, testers please double-check.
VC003 - Autopilot (AFCS) Master Switch not clickable - FIXED PRIOR TO BETA RELEASE


VC005 - IFF panel not clickable

VC006 - Minor glitch in Oxy panel wathering effect.
VC007 - Suggestion to model the seat harnessings - IMPLEMENTED
VC008 - No controls in the cockpit to govern cargo doors opening or rotodome animation - FIXED PRIOR TO BETA RELEASE - added cargo door controls and rotating radome controls
VC009 - Oxygen Control Panel switches are not in flight condition. White lever should be in "normal",  Green lever should be "on" : ACTION - either make them clickable or set them in flight condition. - FIXED 3D Model
VC010 - Request to add more external model geometry to VC (namely landing gear): ACTION - evaluate addition of missing geometry. - FIXED - Added Landing gear model to VC
VC011 - Landing checklist texture in cockpit is incorrect. ACTION - fix texture- FIXED texture sheet VC3
VC012 - Throttle levers do not go on reverse position. ACTION - fix animation sequence - FIXED animation sequence
VC013 - Anti-collision switch does not turn off beacon light. ACTION - fix cockpit control - FIXED, lights were mapped to the incorrect control. 
VC014 - Blurry texture reported in Aux Brake, NAV source, Wing Fold: ACTION - verify, seems an isolated case, textures are well readable on my system -> REJECTED. Texture and resolution is the same as the other textures. Likely to be a system-specific rendering issue.
VC015 - Left Oil Cooler Switch moves the Fuel GOV CHECK: Action Check -> Bug identified in custom part of modeldef.xml -> Need to rebuild. -> Fixed after rebuild
VC016 - Tank Interconnect switch shuts down left engine.
VC017 - Check Alt Hold functionality. - ALT HOLD functionality seems OK in Beta 2.
VC018 - OBS knob not operational in analog cockpits in FSX. REJECTED. OBS knob seems to work fine on all cockpits….
VC019 - Suggestion to have Control Columns visibility control. - IMPLEMENTED IN BETA 2
VC020 - Suggestion to have MFCDU as pop-up -> IMPLEMENTED. Pilot MFCDU is now a pop-up windows, and replaces the radio stack.
VC021 - L PRI PUMP OUT / R FEATHER check visibility condition -> Indentified multiple bugs in CAWS light and fixed them.
VC022 - Console rotary switch is working but not animated
VC023 - Check behavior of turn/slip indicator - FIXED see also AV007
VC024 - BFI Baro set out of its intended window -> Fixed, redone text placement and font implementation. Probably the same issue is present in the M-345 and in the F-35 (check) -> Fixed in Beta 2
VC025 - Check functionality of anti-ice switches (current model uses default implementation in modeldef.xml)
VC026 - G needle seems a little off. - REJECTED. After checking 3D model, needles are perfectly aligned. The incorrect reading is purely due to parallax. 
VC027 - Port hole missing from cockpit model. - FIXED
VC028 - Need to fix reflection texture for digital displays. - FIXED
VC029 - Slip ball indicator in EFIS cockpits should be on the glass and not on the background. FIXED in Beta 2
VC030 - Color correction to parachute package in VC (greenish in reality) - FIXED
VC031 - Some markings missing in the VC rear area - FIXED
VC032 - Warning light should be steady and not blinking - FIXED 
VC033 - Rudder limited should work down to 2 degrees above 200 kts - FIXED
VC034 - Copilot max rudder should indicate the rudder limiter position, not the actual rudder position. 
VC035 - Check AoA indexer (blink vs steady) - FIXED. Implementation is now a little different from the flight manual, but more "standard" - if the aicraft is in a safe configuration for landing (flaps, hook down, gear locked) the indexer will be steady, otherwise it will blink.
VC036 - Check console flood switch tooltip (shows starter)
VC037 - Rudder limiter creates jittery animations. FIXED - implemented custom animation, jitter almost eliminated (but rudder animations will not work in multiplayer :-( )


AV001 - Suggestion to use the Course Indicator Switch as GPS Drives NAV 1 switch - IMPLEMENTED PRIOR TO BETA RELEASE, testers please double-check.
AV002 - E-2C Radar Gauge: missing airplane symbol - Added in Beta 2
AV003 - E-2C Radar Gauge: missing flight plan - IMPLEMENTED PRIOR TO BETA RELEASE
AV004 - Evaluate possibility to add rotodome controls and link radar functions to rotodome activity (currently radar is always on)
AV005 - MFCDU Incomplete: non-operational modes should at least show a "INOP" page. FIXED
AV006 - Operation of internal AoA Indexer is incorrect: ACTION, identified bug in ModelDef.XML, need to recompile VC models.  - FIXED on Beta 2, recompiled models work fine.
AV007 - Turn coordinator and ball animation have incorrect behavior -> check modeldef implementation. -> Verify behavior of the ball, correct the implementation of the turn coordinator. Bugs in primary flight instrumentation have a high priority. - FIXED: reversed ball movement and linked animations of turn indicator to correct paramenter.
AV008 - TACAN frequency conversion to and from NAV1 leading to wrong values in some instances FIXED (note: bug may also be affecting F-35, Eurofighter and S-211!!!)
AV009 - When selecting a NAV frequency (either from MFCDU or knob), selection of NAV1 frequencies is inhibited - FIXED
AV010 - Implemented TACPACK TACAN (all models) - when TACAN or NAV1 are set to a Tacpack carrier vessel TACAN Frequency, pointer 1 on NAV instruments will indicate the carrier. Also carrier distance is reported by BDHI and EFIS
AV011 - Implemented TACPACK ILS (all models) - when a TACPACK carrier is detected, NAV2 frequencies are sweeped (as per Tacpack implementation) to identify the carrier ILS. Once the carrier ILS frequency is detected, the CDI and GSI will indicate deviations from carrier ILS. FMS and Pointer 1 are hijacked for the purpose on EFIS screen. 
AV012 - Request to have special conditions when the aircraft is spawned on the ground or in the air, now set as follows:
If the aircraft spawns on the ground: Condition levers set to GND STOP, Parking brakes ON, Electical switches OFF, MFCDUs OFF, Fuel pumps OFF
If the aircraft spawns in mid air: Condition levers set to ON, Parking brakes off, Electrical switches ON, MFCDU ON, Fuel pumps ON

AV013 - Suggestion to implement a "ready to start" hot key following the "cold and dark" approach - Implemented Control+Shift+R for "Ready to Start Engines" and Control+Shift+O for Shutdown.
AV014 - Need to implement proper fuel feeding code after removal of default crossfeed functionality - ADDED custom code for fuel tank management.
AV015 - Need to implement flap first notch / wing fold lever interlock (in reality you must set flaps to 15° before commanding the wing folding) -> IMPLEMENTED. Flap lever now move automatically to first notch if wing fold lever is activated.
AV016 - Implement rudder limiter -> ADDED TO BETA 2
AV017 - Remove A/T controls from MFCDU (A/T not present) - REMOVED
AV018 - Autopilot MFCDU control do not ovveride mechanical switches -> better harmonize them for most users… -> IMPLEMENTED: MFCDU and Mechanical Switches now have the same authority.


FM001 - Engine thrust seems low, takes a while to bring the A/C at high altitude -> CHANGE REQUEST REJECTED: At 40000 AUW the book says 3 minutes to 10,000 ft.
I got ours there in 2 minutes 50 seconds at 170 KIAS climbing speed and 39654 lbs at 10,000 ft.
Take-off ground roll is 2000ft at 40,000 lbs. Best I can see it should be 1500ft. NO CHANGE

FM002 - Reverse thrust seems low -> CHANGE REQUEST REJECTED: Full reverse thrust should give –1800 to –2000 lbs prop thrust per engine.  Simulated reverse thrust is 2004 lbs -> NO CHANGE

FM003 - Engine power appear far too high. Keeping in mind that the 350 knots speed presented in figures should be true airspeed, not indicated airspeed. This goes together with the aircraft not slowing down properly on approach without flaps. On turboprops, the propellers will act like brake disks producing a huge amount of drag, slowing the aircraft quickly. This should be even more pronounced on the 4-blade props than on the NP2000, as the new propellers tend not to create the same amount of drag - but it all depends a bit on propeller RPM and blade angle as well. Will investigate further.
From Roy:The propellers at flight idle produce 3000 lbs thrust each. With this engine they never act as brake disks on the approach. To fly the correct approach speed and AOA you need flaps and a sizeable amount of power.  On pistons the props produce negative thrust when the throttle is closed, not on this type of turboprop. The model actual top speed at 15000 ft for example is 194 Calibrated and 245 True which is below the Manual values. At sea level the speeds are very close. This is because the SHP is correct at sea level but drops quicker than the manual with altitude. I will test that in more detail and should be able to recover the correct amount of SHP drop with altiitude. By the manual it should be about the same at 15000 ft as it is at sea level because the compressor acts like a turbocharger. At the moment in the model it is 55% of the sea level value. -> (Dino - DECISION: NO CHANGE).

FM004 - The pitch in flight (level flight, 8000 ft during the test) appears much too high for a high-wing turboprop with straight wings and resembles more a swept-wing jet. I'd say, a bit extra lift in the aircraft.cfg file would do the trick.
Answer Pitch in level flight is Angle of Attack. In the cruise at 190 KIAS the C-2 AOA at around 43000lbs AUW is 15 units which = 3.4 degrees fuselage angle.
This is almost exactly what it is in the model. Lift coefficient was calculated from basic principles and the CL Max was calculated from flaps up stall speeds and knowledge the type of airfoil used. The CL/alpha slope was similarly calculated. Flap delta CL was again calculated and gives very close agreement with the Manual. Hence the landing speeds are within 3% of manual values. -> (Dino - DECISION: NO CHANGE).

FM005 - Basic empty weight for C-2 is incorrect. Typical empty weight with cargo crate (always monted) is around 38000 pounds. -> Fixed in Beta 2

FM006 - Implement suggestions for real-world aircrews.

MI001 - Sound files configuration: missing xc2b2shut.wav FIXED (wrong sound config); (texture) FIXED (wrong format); T6_15C_T.DDS FIXED (missing, added): Action, verify files list. - FIXED
MI002 - Duplicate sections in sound file (carrier trap, gyro sound, stall warning, AP Disengage)

MI003 - Gear Warning sound: check conditions and sound effect. - CHECKED conditions, slight changes to sound effect.
MI004 - Turbine sound volume too high in VC - Reduced internal engine sounds by -5dB
MI005 - Syntax error reported (seems harmless) -> Fixed. It caused an incorrect display in the MFCDU data entry mode in some instances.
MI006 - Fix ATC entries -> Fixed
MI007 - Request to add more cockpit views - IMPLEMENTED on Beta 2
MI008 - Need to revise the manual.