Flight Test airport...and announcing KMUD

So I picked up a few items from the Independence Day X-Plane sale last night and wanted to give them a whirl this morning. I thought I might finally be able to retire my old hunting ground of KTNX (Tonopah Test Range) that I always traditionally used for testing new airplanes. Why do I like Tonopah? Nice scenery, a long runway, very little autogen type stuff (high FPS), and it also features a nice little loop graphic that is a good reference for pattern work.

You can see a bit of KTNX here in this video:

Anyway - so I bought the new Aerosoft Twentynine Palms (KTNP) airport last night during the sale and had visions of this airport perhaps becoming my new flight test airport. It is gorgeous and framerate friendly, so no complaints in that area.

I did fail to do my homework however - when I realized that Twentynine Palms has some significant disadvantages.

  • The longest runway is only 5531’ x 75’ - which is enough for most operations, but super large and heavy aircraft will require more runway than that. And 150’ would be better (more standard) width for larger transport category aircraft.

  • There is only an RNAV (GPS) and VOR approach to one runway - and no precision approach (ILS) to any runway. This is a problem in that for a lot of my testing I need to test the LOC/GS capture capabilities of aircraft.

I test a lot of military and experimental aircraft, and that limited runway length is a problem for some of the really fast aircraft that eat up runway.

We’ve already had a small incident with one of JetManHaus’s creations with an embarrassing overrun…(hey Austin - how about some EMAS capabilities in X-Plane 11?)…

Loving the FlyRealHUDS transport and helo HUD plug-ins I bought…(more on that later)…

So I’m wondering if I might be able to “build” an adjacent facility next to Twentynine Palms to suit my flight test needs. It looks like there is some room in the desert over there…but I’m not sure how easy it is.

I’d probably like to put in a 10,000’ parallel runway with an ILS to both ends. Maybe a carrier box and IFLOLS and some helo landing areas as well. I’ll probably call it “KMUD” (an identifier that appears to not be in use in the U.S. to my surprise!). It will be a project I’ll have to work on in my spare time…but we’ll see what I can do.




Misery & Tears

Well boys, I think we’ve found the name of the bar that will be collocated with the hangar facility at KMUD…


You may be able to add and ILS approach via WED. maybe


That does look gorgeous though.

So - pressing on with flight testing at KTNP despite the short runways - errr…perhaps I would have been well served to do a few touch-and-goes over at Palm Springs first. This was the recording of my first Rotate MD-80 flight. In my defense, I didn’t know what the Vref speed was supposed to be…and I was dorking around with my viewpoint the whole way down trying to figure out what the best seat height and angle is. The results speak for themselves. Given my concern about the runway length…I hate to think that 24 inches of overrun should count against my FAA record…


Thrust reversers and staying on the ground the first touch down and you would have been good I think!

Nice Video!

LOL…then there is the whole tail strike thing. @TheAlmightySnark is going to be really angry that I tore up that back end… :wink: And I would have made it if I had armed the ground spoilers too…I notice they did not pop up after touchdown…

Hey @weaponz248 - are you able to run the 4K textures on that MD-80? My lowly GTX 760 choked on the 4K textures and I was getting single digit framerates. I downloaded the 2K textures and now I’m fine. Hoping an upgraded graphics card later this year might allow me to run the higher res textures…



No please, really. Leave vital bits of aircraft on the runway, it’s not as if we NEEDED them at some point…

Then again, we’ve grown confident enough in the pilots abilities to drag planes over the concrete on the wrong bits of aircraft that we have given them skidpads, hydraulic cylinders and warning bells. I mean, at this point it’s a given if not expected that your average pilots will do all in his abilities to destroy a aircraft!

So, speedtape anyone? It’s the modus operandi when fixing those new fancy 787 planes!


I had to run 2k textures. I didnt even try to run at 4k since I know my 570 couldnt handle it. I do like that Rotate gave us the 2k 4k option.

Another thing to remember is the liveries come in 4k or 2k also.

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@BeachAV8R … any rundown on the air transport hud?

I think it is cool for the price - but I haven’t fully explored it yet. From what I can gather from the manual, it integrates with certain supported aircraft to automatically read the aircraft dataref to calculate the V speeds - but I’m wondering if it possible to also have it do the same for non supported aircraft. It would be nice if it had a little pop-up box where you could just manually enter the V speeds.

I like it a LOT better than the default X-Plane HUD for sure - it just gives so much more information.

The developer’s video shows it pretty well. They should really post up some nice CAT I (200 - 1/2) type videos though. Maybe I’ll try to record one tonight…

That’d be great. I’m on the fence but dont want to miss out on the price

How’s that E110? It caught my eye a few months back but I never really thought about flying it until the sale. Lol

Would be nice if we as civilian aviation could speed up implementation of those HUD’s. I think they are a gift to safety and situational awareness in the modern cockpit.

I wonder if those HUD’s also show TCAS instructions?

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While a gift it can also be a curse. To much reliance on technology and machines and suddenly when they fail people forget what to do.

As for TCAS. I dont see why not. A HUD is in the simplest terms a projection from a box. Sort of like a computer screen. HUD makers could probably program software to display anything the jet can relay to it

I don’t have that one. I have the older ERJ140 from Danklaue that I like - but it has been a long time since I flew it (and don’t know how well it has been updated over the last few X-plane patches).

Here is a quick & dirty video I put together. I still haven’t really explored the HUD options at all - and I haven’t flown the C-17 since last year, and this is a pretty poorly planned box pattern to an ILS 8 at Phoenix…just sort of wagging the numbers. I flew it with one quarter mile visibility (as you can see when the runway materializes out of the gloom). This was default XP weather generator too because I wasn’t happy with what SkyMaxx was giving me with regards to the fog layer.

You can see some of the modes. Doesn’t appear that the ILS8 has DME though…because that was missing. The most important part is the little velocity vector and course guidance “donut” that you simply match up to keep on the ILS - very intuitive and easy. Lots of other annunciators that I haven’t explored yet - but it is way better than the default HUD or the HUD that is in the Virtavia C-17. Sorry I can’t be more in-depth…I will be reviewing it at some point down the road. I also bought the helo specific one too…I guess there are some minor differences between the different packages, but again, I’m not very well rehearsed in what they are. The black transitions in the video are areas where I skipped ahead to keep the video length down to just a few minutes… Also, the bouncing of the a/s and velocity vector are because I dialed in some thunderstorms and “light” turbulence. Probably be a bit more settled with no turbulence on…

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According to your post over here it was the last item in your cart, you take it out?

Oh shoot…yeah…for some reason I was reading (in my head) when you said E110 I was thinking those E-Jets in the E-Jet series. I definitely did buy the E110 - and it looks great. Again, only had it a day or so, so I haven’t explored it in detail yet.

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Well same plane company makes both :wink: