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Thread: 737 Max

  1. #1
    jrussl's Avatar
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    737 Max

    A very well written piece on the 737Max. William L. Is an excellent writer. He obviously picked up some of this from his father.

    https://apple.news/AHhKSVOlLS0GHBTAPJI9UXA

    Jeff


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    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    From the above article ref the 737 Max when discussing pilot competency comes this quote:

    ..."When I mentioned this to Larry Rockliff, a former Canadian military and Airbus test pilot, he shrugged me off. “Look,” he said, “we know as a fact that half of airline pilots graduated in the bottom half of their class.”...

    While it may be true per class attended, it's likely that some schools and instruction are better and some worse. But it is an interesting comment if left unqualified.

    Gary
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    So where did the other half go?

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    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CharlieN View Post
    So where did the other half go?
    They're still flying. That's why there's two in the cockpit. Hopefully one was in the upper half of the class.

    Gary
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC12D-4-85 View Post
    From the above article ref the 737 Max when discussing pilot competency comes this quote:

    ..."When I mentioned this to Larry Rockliff, a former Canadian military and Airbus test pilot, he shrugged me off. “Look,” he said, “we know as a fact that half of airline pilots graduated in the bottom half of their class.”...

    While it may be true per class attended, it's likely that some schools and instruction are better and some worse. But it is an interesting comment if left unqualified.

    Gary
    Gary, while you maybe joking I take great offense to the comment. Having graduated second in my class where there were 1200 applicants and they only took 38. I’ve flown with blue angles, thunderbirds, sr71, numerous air medal winners, Air Force one pilots, etc etc etc. having flown 20000 plus hours in weather most on this forum would simply stay home. Now I will completely agree the level of hand flying has gone waaaaay down, we were required to hand fly all the way to cruise alt and all the way down when I started, 1985. The company wanted autopilots to fly to save the most fuel so new policy (sometime after the 737-300 came out, was after cleanup they wanted the autopilot on but by no means required it. Up until I retired I still hand flew all the way up and most of the way down and required all approaches and landings hand flown unless cat 3. The problem as I see it is Boeing and Airbus (the ringleader in this travesty) have computer integration soo deep in these aircraft you almost have to be a EE to know which cb to pull to disable the system. It all started with the famous lawnmower of Toulouse airbus accident, but we didn’t learn. We used to love Boeing and Douglas and hate Airbus for that reason. Its said you told a Boeing what to do and asked an Airbus (up to the max obviously). Yes hand flying needs and must be focused on (the Vietnam guys did that for us new guys back then) but equally important is the manufacturers to slow down on computer integration and give us clear overrides in emergencies.
    Last edited by Farmer Ted; 09-19-2019 at 09:55 AM. Reason: Spell check
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    wireweinie's Avatar
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    Ted

    My view is that while the computerised stuff is efficient and eases the work load, there will ALWAYS be an issue or incident that machine logic cannot interpret or was never programmed for. In those cases, a plain, old human is the best tool in the cockpit. Do you agree with this or am I over simplifying it?

    Web
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    Eddie Foy's Avatar
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    I think the translation got a little garbled. The top half of my class ( and every class) in Air Force pilot training chose fighters. The bottom half got the Buffs and Trash Haulers.

    Quote Originally Posted by BC12D-4-85 View Post
    From the above article ref the 737 Max when discussing pilot competency comes this quote:

    ..."When I mentioned this to Larry Rockliff, a former Canadian military and Airbus test pilot, he shrugged me off. “Look,” he said, “we know as a fact that half of airline pilots graduated in the bottom half of their class.”...

    While it may be true per class attended, it's likely that some schools and instruction are better and some worse. But it is an interesting comment if left unqualified.

    Gary
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"
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  8. #8
    Eddie Foy's Avatar
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    The cockpit of the future will have a man and a dog. The man is there to feed the dog. The dog is there to bite the man if he touches anything.
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"
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    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    First take the time to read the article, then agree or disagree with the author's premise. The quote I noted previously was in context to support the author's opinion which may not be 100% correct. There's lots of discussion on the various aircraft forums for and against the 737 Max's aircraft design and methods of training the pilots involved in the accidents. I've read what I could for months and have formed no firm conclusion.

    However the 737 Max remains grounded while crews fly.

    Gary
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    wireweinie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC12D-4-85 View Post
    However the 737 Max remains grounded while crews fly.

    Gary
    Point I hadn't considered. If the aircraft is not the problem then the crew is. If the crew is the problem, is it a) bad crewmen b) crewmen trained improperly, all around, or c) crewmen trained improperly on the Max?
    Life's tough . . . wear a cup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wireweinie View Post
    Ted

    My view is that while the computerised stuff is efficient and eases the work load, there will ALWAYS be an issue or incident that machine logic cannot interpret or was never programmed for. In those cases, a plain, old human is the best tool in the cockpit. Do you agree with this or am I over simplifying it?

    Web
    I couldn’t agree more! I’m my opinion the average pilot we saw at the end of my career wasn’t the pilots that I started with. While immensely computer literate their hand flying skills were just average. (Don’t get worked up guys I said average, there is thankfully exceptions) the first double fms failure I had my copilot froze up on me and I flew by myself for ten minutes before he quite mumbling. This automation will always fail and sadly at times when you need it most.
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  12. #12
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wireweinie View Post
    Point I hadn't considered. If the aircraft is not the problem then the crew is. If the crew is the problem, is it a) bad crewmen b) crewmen trained improperly, all around, or c) crewmen trained improperly on the Max?
    The article linked above should be read. It's the latest I've come across in a series of opinions and includes more detail than has previously been made available in a public format. Also note the lack of cockpit recordings that remain unavailable to the masses. There's a mix of politics, profit, professional training and conduct, aircraft design and certification and so on that are involved in these sad events.

    Edit: The author's speculation on maintenance should be reviewed as well.

    Gary
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    First I never flew the max, but I was a capt on the 737-100,200,300,500,700,800,900. While not my favorite, they are good aircraft! My understanding is due to slight engine relocation realitive to cg on the max the pitch motion change during abrupt throttle movement such as TO and go around was accounted for with sensors and computers not that is was needed. Much like the autopilot preloads trim for go around on a cat3 approach. My contention is without the system fighting the pilots nothing would have happed. I think weak pilots would still have been fine without the computer fighting them. These guys had no idea, just like the American and Southwest pilots, the system was even working in the background.

  14. #14
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    To balance the teeter-totter of opinion here's some current comments on the 737 Max article linked earlier:

    https://www.moonofalabama.org/2019/0...x-failure.html

    Edit: And another opinion: https://newrepublic.com/article/1549...ial-revolution

    This is why it'll take time to ferret out the contributing factors and players involved in these disasters.

    Gary
    Last edited by BC12D-4-85; 09-19-2019 at 01:36 PM.

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    He’s a Vanity Fair writer who did some flying at one time, not the aviation authority he sells himself as.
    He also wrote articles praising Airbus and their design for saving the “miracle on the Hudson” flight in terms that professional Airbus pilots thought ridiculous. He did agree that Sully and Stiles were great pilots eventually.
    This article covers lots of ground but leaves out key details we’ve learned about MCAS since the grounding (I.E. it doesn’t cutout when the control column is pulled or pushed like the normal stab trim would do) maybe intentionally or perhaps the author doesn’t understand it as well as he protrays.
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    Gary, that’s been my contention all along! MCAS is the problem! It’s a system put on the aircraft without knowledge or training for the pilots that flew it. The computer dictates control (ie trim) without the pilots knowledge or authority. They didn’t have the training on how to diagnose or disable the system. If the system wasn’t on the aircraft at all I’ll bet it wouldn’t change the flying characteristics that much. When Douglas went from the dc9-30 to the -50 they just hung bigger engines (the jt8d-15 and -17) and put a big plug in the fuselage. Those planes landed waaaay differently than the dc9-10 and 30’s we had in the fleet at the time. Did we have transition training? Nope none! But other than pounding a few landings we got along fine. That’s were I fault Boeing and why I refused to fly airbus. I didn’t want some computer overriding me. At the time those poor bastards didn’t even know the system was in place.
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    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    There's likely no end to the opinions, and facts are challenging to confirm. The links in #14 teeter from the Thread's initial article. I have no experience as an airline pilot so I read and comment to learn from those that are or were.

    Gary

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    Taledrger's Avatar
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    Farmer Ted, from what i have read here, is the preeminent expert.. I agree with every thing he has said.. I've flown every 737 except the MAX (I retired weeks before the first one arrived) My professional brothers and sisters have a lot of experience with it.. the MCAS "software" is certainly suspect here..
    Suffice to say, I would ride on a MAX with a US Airline Crew (and some others) without question. Would I put my family on one? Do I trust my Brothers and Sisters.... YES!! Should I even have to think about that??
    My beloved BOEING let me down here!! But the USA airline crews have not and I trust they never will...
    Bob D
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    I have thousands of hours in both Boeing and Airbus. If you are dissing Airbus, without ever flying it, I don't understand how you can speak in a concise and succinct way about it.

    I'll tell you what happened with the Max. One the 737 airframe should have been killed off after the 737-800. The 900 was a dog masquerading as a 757.
    If Boeing wanted to build a narrow body around the Leap engine, it should have been a clean sheet.
    Nothing wrong with fly by wire, but there is something wrong when you organize it around a single sensor and you wrap it on top of hydro-mechanical controls. Boeing controls an entire system around a single sensor, Airbus kills the system when it goes single sensor. If Boeing had such a hard time creating correct handling characteristics, that argues for full fly by wire, rather than a hybrid system. That way the control dynamics are fully integrated and not subject to mechanical leverages. Think about it.
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  20. #20
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    I've read these three articles, the first in post #1 and the two in #14 and while I find it all fascinating.......It makes me mostly feel sick to my stomach.

    Thanks for the two follow-up articles.

    I've lost faith in Boeing and today Colt sold us out...... I'm getting too old for this S...
    Last edited by n40ff; 09-19-2019 at 07:45 PM.
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    Back to the "lower half" joke. I did laugh, but then I think that somebody took it seriously.

    Statistically, half the airline pilots ought to match half the military pilots, be that half the top or bottom of the class.
    You do know that exactly half of us have IQs at or below 100?

    Unlike Begee, I only flew the 100/200/300 Boeings, and only the A320. I loved them all. I did not care for the 757 - maybe it was because they were leftover Eastern, or maybe I just like smaller aircraft.

    In the other thread, I might have mentioned that I thought an FO with 300 total time might be a part of the problem?

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    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Here's some info videos I've followed that offer a brief view into the life of professional Airline Pilots: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwp...dexB3ow/videos

    Included are references to the 737MAX and MCAS control challenges.

    Gary

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    Taledrger's Avatar
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    Well GeeBee if that was directed at me. I have flown the "Airbus' and spent count less hours in Toulouse.. I flew the 330 when it was still being pushed out in the dark in France..
    I have always respected your views and never questioned them. You are definitely are a man of knowledge and experience..
    I feel that "Farmer Ted" who ever he is, has a good prospective.. if you feel your expertise has been challenged, my esteemed apologies...
    I have never entered into a Boeing/Airbus argument and never will.. If you can point out in my post where I did that, I will apologize further..
    I have extensive experience with Boeing Aircraft and while less with Airbus I would never choose one over the other ..
    My post was a in support of the folks I have been privileged to fly with in my 40 year career and the training they have received..
    The MAX needs to be fixed or never fly again and the crews need to be trained to fly the airplanes that they have been entrusted to fly...
    Last edited by Taledrger; 09-19-2019 at 09:05 PM. Reason: spelling
    Bob D
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    Gee bee, does have a point I cannot argue with. The 737-700 probably should have been the apex of the line. I saw one of my first 757 years ago land 29 at ewr. Then load up and takeoff full back to msp and use less runway then we did in a dc9-30 with -15 engines. Runway 29 was rarely used back then except certain narrow bodies and commuters. The 757 can go straight to the 40’s with that same full load and has great range that we didn’t get in the 737 till the 700-800 etops aircraft years later.
    Bob Turner I do also agree that 400 hours is to little and it sounds like your old enough to remember when united opened the worst can of worms with “train to proficiency” and away from hiring the best and the brightest. (Note I’ve been color and gender blind from the start and always will ONLY care the person sitting next to me can fly!) I do miss three pilot aircraft I learned a ton watching and flipping switches in the back from some great guys. These new kids could learn a lot too. The judgment, poise and integrity I learned during that time I still reflect upon.
    Last edited by Farmer Ted; 09-19-2019 at 09:20 PM. Reason: I can’t spell tonight
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  25. #25
    Taledrger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farmer Ted View Post
    Gee bee, does have a point I cannot argue with. The 737-700 probably should have been the apex of the line. I saw one of my first 757 years ago land 29 at ewr. Then load up and takeoff full back to msp and use less runway then we did in a dc9-30 with -15 engines. Runway 29 was rarely used back then except certain narrow bodies and commuters. The 757 can go straight to the 40’s with that same full load and has great range that we didn’t get in the 737 till the 700-800 etops aircraft years later.
    Bob Turner I do also agree that 400 hours is to little and it sounds like your old enough to remember when united opened the worst can of worms with “train to proficiency” and away from hiring the best and the brightest. (Note I’ve been color and gender blind from the start and always will ONLY care the person sitting next to me can fly!) I do miss three pilot aircraft I learned a ton watching and flipping switches in the back from some great guys. These new kids could learn a lot too. The judgment, poise and integrity I learned during that time I still reflect upon.
    I agree with most of that, but would say the 800 was the limit... the 900 and 900 ER were way past the line..
    The 757-200, in my opinion, was the finest Boeing I ever flew ( I never flew a 727).. Depart 29 at Newark bound for Shannon one day in the 757 and the paperwork said reduced thrust... I decided I'd be more comfortable "full throttle".. we crossed the departure end of the runway at 900' with the gear in the well.. the 757-200 was my favorite jet,, ever!!
    Bob D
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    Bob, I agree completely. My brother once asked after I retired what is the jet i wanted to fly but didn’t....it’s the 757. It’s performance always impressed me and I think it was built before it’s time when most airlines were hub and spoke and narrow bodies didn’t generally fly international. As for the 727 I flew the 100-200 for only a year and it was the grand old lady of the air. She looked great, was fast, was LOUD, but it was the only aircraft I ever flew that you routinely hit the aileron stops in turns with the flaps up. Only the inboard ailerons worked with flaps up. Try that in dc9 and your upside down! We always said the best job in the airline world has always been 727 copilot no walkarounds, no responsibility and no INS (inertial nav was old school gps) to set up.
    Last edited by Farmer Ted; 09-19-2019 at 10:29 PM. Reason: Still can’t spell

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    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    I went from the DC8 to the 757, liked learning all the new technology(at the time) but I didn't like the way the 757 flew. Different control feel and didn't trim out as good as the 8 when hand flying. I flew the 737-800, not by choice. Got displaced during a recession. Those little airplanes going up and down six times a day wasn't for me, got back to the 747 and long legs to interesting places and retired from there. Over 38 years got typed in B727, B737, B747, B747-400, B757/767,DC8, L1011, A300-B4. Glad I'm done with all those trash cans. Aeronca Champ is my ride now.
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    Gordon Misch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrussl View Post
    A very well written piece on the 737Max. William L. Is an excellent writer. He obviously picked up some of this from his father.

    https://apple.news/AHhKSVOlLS0GHBTAPJI9UXA

    Jeff
    A little info re the author: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Langewiesche
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    The bottom line is this. The future is low wing loading, highly aft CG aircraft with limited flight control surfaces. The only way to control these beasts is with fly by wire. We can complain all we want, but the guys who write the checks want highly fuel efficient airplanes. Continuing to "patch" hydro mechanical and mechanical controls is not going to work. It did not work for the Russians with the Mig-29, MD with the MD-11 and the US military had the good sense to move early into FBW to synthesize stability. Boeing's failure with the Max is trying to patch up a dated design with half way measures.

    I might also add that Boeing has made a strategic mistake in not developing a modular FBW system. The beauty of Airbus is the same system in the A320 works in the A380. Only the software load is different. Even Gulfstream knows this and took it to heart. Boeing latest version of FBW is not even modular
    Last edited by GeeBee; 09-20-2019 at 06:12 PM.
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    Eddie Foy's Avatar
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    Flew the 757/767 common type rating. The 757 with the rolls was a hot rod. The stance reminded me of a long legged woman with big hooters!

    Quote Originally Posted by Farmer Ted View Post
    Bob, I agree completely. My brother once asked after I retired what is the jet i wanted to fly but didn’t....it’s the 757. It’s performance always impressed me and I think it was built before it’s time when most airlines were hub and spoke and narrow bodies didn’t generally fly international. As for the 727 I flew the 100-200 for only a year and it was the grand old lady of the air. She looked great, was fast, was LOUD, but it was the only aircraft I ever flew that you routinely hit the aileron stops in turns with the flaps up. Only the inboard ailerons worked with flaps up. Try that in dc9 and your upside down! We always said the best job in the airline world has always been 727 copilot no walkarounds, no responsibility and no INS (inertial nav was old school gps) to set up.
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeeBee View Post
    The bottom line is this. The future is low wing loading, highly aft CG aircraft with limited flight control surfaces. The only way to control these beasts is with fly by wire. We can complain all we want, but the guys who write the checks want highly fuel efficient airplanes. Continuing to "patch" hydro mechanical and mechanical controls is not going to work. It did not work for the Russians with the Mig-29, MD with the MD-11 and the US military had the good sense to move early into FBW to synthesize stability. Boeing's failure with the Max is trying to patch up a dated design with half way measures.

    I might also add that Boeing has made a strategic mistake in not developing a modular FBW system. The beauty of Airbus is the same system in the A320 works in the A380. Only the software load is different. Even Gulfstream knows this and took it to heart. Boeing latest version of FBW is not even modular
    Well I guess we will have to agree to disagree. I’ll stick with the old school. I flew a lot of 30-40 year old aircraft and those old Boeing and Douglas aircraft dispatch reliability was top notch. In fact the old dc9 in its last years at our airline always had the best dispatch reliability in the fleet. They sold all the early Airbus because they were so bad (A300). I fear for these guys when these aircraft get old. When the first 737-300 (our first magic jet)started getting old they sold those right away the gremlins were to hard to fight. You guys know the “why is it doin that?” thing. I can only imagine what an old A320 is like. But hey to each his own. I got a lot of comfort knowing I needed nothing but jetA to keep those old birds in the air. BTW, you couldn’t hack the software on those aircraft because they had none.
    Last edited by Farmer Ted; 09-20-2019 at 07:55 PM.
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  32. #32
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eddie Foy View Post
    Flew the 757/767 common type rating. The 757 with the rolls was a hot rod. The stance reminded me of a long legged woman with big hooters!
    Absolutely agree. The P&W 757 was my favorite and a fantastic performer as well. I know that I could get it in and out of my airport with ease, if the runway (1860 feet) could have supported the weight.
    N1PA

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    Quote Originally Posted by Farmer Ted View Post
    Well I guess we will have to agree to disagree. I’ll stick with the old school. I flew a lot of 30-40 year old aircraft and those old Boeing and Douglas aircraft dispatch reliability was top notch. In fact the old dc9 in its last years at our airline always had the best dispatch reliability in the fleet. They sold all the early Airbus because they were so bad (A300). I fear for these guys when these aircraft get old. When the first 737-300 (our first magic jet)started getting old they sold those right away the gremlins were to hard to fight. You guys know the “why is it doin that?” thing. I can only imagine what an old A320 is like. But hey to each his own. I got a lot of comfort knowing I needed nothing but jetA to keep those old birds in the air. BTW, you couldn’t hack the software on those aircraft because they had none.

    It is not a matter of me or you agreeing. It is a matter of what the airline is going to park on the ramp because they write the checks. You gonna say, "Nope, not going to fly it because it has FBW or I don't like the way it handles? Do you really think you are going to be able to handle airplanes that cruise with a CG at 39% MAC without FBW Really? As long as it has a Transport Airworthiness certificate as a professional you are going to develop methods and procedures to make it happen safely. That is what we do, why we have ATPs and why we get paid good money.
    Last edited by GeeBee; 09-21-2019 at 09:17 AM.

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    I flew whatever the company had. Then I would do what all airline jockeys do, complain.
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by Cub junkie View Post
    I flew whatever the company had. Then I would do what all airline jockeys do, complain.
    Now That’s funny! But so so true!

  36. #36
    hotrod180's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC12D-4-85 View Post
    ...... “Look,” he said, “we know as a fact that half of airline pilots graduated in the bottom half of their class.”...
    IMHO this is a pretty stupid comment.
    The immediate response should be "yes, and the other half finished in the top half!"
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!

  37. #37
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hotrod180 View Post
    IMHO this is a pretty stupid comment.
    The immediate response should be "yes, and the other half finished in the top half!"
    Of course. But maybe the commenter has his reasons based on observations in Canada and with Airbus...don't know. Regardless of initial class standing hopefully all will go on to better their initial training through experience. It takes time to learn.

    Gary
    Likes flyrite liked this post

  38. #38

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    Perhaps this was a play on the old "what do you call the person who graduated last in medical school?"
    You can't get there from here. You have to go over yonder and start from there.

  39. #39
    Chicken Hawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by N86250 View Post
    Perhaps this was a play on the old "what do you call the person who graduated last in medical school?"
    Proctologist!


    Sent from my iPhone using SuperCub.Org mobile app
    Likes n40ff, flyrite, CamTom12 liked this post

  40. #40

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    I like Farmer Ted taking comfort in only needing kerosene to stat aloft. But that's flight control, how about engines? When I traded up in the Rotax world, I wanted nothing to do with LaneA/LaneB headaches. Not even full tanks would keep you up then. Waaay too involved for a small aircraft. I was comfortable with dual processors in the telephone exchanges I built and maintained, but I don't want that s--t near my tepee.
    What's a go-around?

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