If anyone has the Viggen , I have a basic question or two I would like to ask

Pretty simple question really.

Flying the Viggen ( rather trying to hold on to the Viggen as it tries to “Lawn Dart” ) , for me is “BUSY” flying . At this point I am hands on this beast nearly 95% of the time.

So I was curious if its me and I might need to either adjust my HOTAS AXIS , or maybe I am not trimming it very well , OR is the Viggen just that type of aircraft, one that requires a lot of attention , as far as controlling it goes ?

I was hoping if any of you fine gentlemen own, or have flown a Viggen I could get some feedback on this, and maybe a tip or two on how to better get a handle on it.

I know that with more flight time , things will be far more natural and smooth out on their own for the most part , yet I can not help but think a good part of my semi-struggle is me in some way.

With the Viggen relying on low altitude , nap of earth, tactics to survive , it just feels like I am having to input far more control than I expected.

Thanks for any advice ! :sweden: :salute:



If you’re flying low level then it’s always a hands-on affair. For me, it’s power changes that usually require a lot more trim inputs, so unless I’m going somewhere quick I keep it out of burner and it stays fairly straight from trim. Otherwise, going into the transonic, I’m always having to adjust my inputs.


I press the autopilot buttons except when in a/b, attitude and altitude iirc. But trimming is quite constant. I don’t find it necessarily busy to fly I rather enjoy the experience compared to the hornet and harrier which can feel very tame to fly


Thank you @Franze and @Cib . I think that Cib my have struck on my problem, I been flying a Hornet too , and its far easier flying , for many reasons from avionics to the air-frame and so on .

Thanks gents, I do appreciate knowing these things, and it will help me . If nothing else just the mental aspect of knowing it is not just me.

Cheers !


Second using the autopilot as much as possible. If you have them, I’d take up say the F-5 or the F-86 and do some low level flying. If those 2 feel like less work than the Viggen with the autopilot on, then you definitely should look at your settings. The SU-25 would work as well I suppse.

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When the Viggen was designed with just one crewmember it broke with the current doctrine of a pilot and a navigator/bombardier on attack aircraft.
To do this it had to rely on a, at the time, advanced navigation and targeting system and an autopilot, or Styrautomat (Steering automat) in Swedish :). So, make yourself comfortable with the SPAK/ATT/HÖJD autopilot modes. In real life the Viggen was flown in either ATT or HÖJD when the pilot needed to do some systems managing. In ATT (attitude) the Viggen can be steered by the trim hat. HÖJD (altitude) mode is only used at high altitudes or low over sea.


@Troll may have issue with my offering Viggen flying advice, I beg his indulgence.

One might say that I took a trial and (many) error approach to learning how to fly the Viggen. This would be true. When one feels the need to substitute the Joystick trigger’s normal weapon firing function for the Eject, Eject, Eject function, one can safely assume he is having difficulty managing, let alone mastering, the aircraft. Such was the situation in which I found myself. (see Scene Shift below for details)

The first thing to realize is that the Viggen is not a “Fighter” in the strict sense. It is an attack or strike platform with some self defense air-to-air capability. Had it been a US design, it would have undoubtedly ben given the “A” function nomenclature…or perhaps “FB”. Thus it’s flight regime is more A-6 or FB-111 than F-4.

With that in mind, it should be noted that the A-6 and FB-111 are two-crew aircraft; the Viggen is single seat. Thus the need to allow for a “divided attention” approach to flying and fighting. Given the technology of the time, the approach appears to have been to automate some of the flying functions, to give the pilot the ability to focus more attention on the attack profile–radar, weapons set up, etc.–while the aircraft “flew itself”. (Not quite but that is the general idea.)

Thus, I invited your attention to @Troll’s post above, which captures the fundamental ethos of “Viggen Flying”.

Scene Shift:

The Time: A dreary Saturday Afternoon

The Place: A common room in the local Methodist Church’s basement. Several folding chairs have been arranged in a loose circle. A coffee urn sits on a side table with a few dozen styrofoam cups, set close by.

A few middle aged people enter, none together. Some get a cup of coffee from the side table, adding sugar substitute or powdered creamer and then stirring with tiny plastic straws. Eventually all take a seat in the ring of folding chairs

One of them, a slightly balding gentleman in khakis and a polo shirt, glances at his watch, then stands and clears his throat for attention.

“I guess we should start.”, he says, “I think at the end of the last meeting we were about to hear from Hangar200”

There is a murmur of general approval as I stand up.

“Hello.”, I say, “My name is Hangar and I’m a Viggen Crash-a-holic.”

“Welcome Hangar.”, the group atones together.


@Troll candy: What the Viggen does best