Cessna 337 and 02 — Love at First Flight

Where is it going? Will it be Cessna or will it be Boeing? 

I suppose that it took about a year into my flight simulation adventure to discover not just my favourite plane available on Flightgear, but my obsessional plane to date. 

I started with the struggle to master the Cessna 172 — the default aircraft of all simulation platforms and the default aircraft of all simulation hardware. Then I flew a Boeing 757 from Birmingham International to Dublin every day ~

I could take off correctly. This was easy once the timing of rotation was mastered. However, landing the damned thing cleanly proved nigh impossible!

Let's put it this way — I made a lot of dents and scratches in the field and tarmacs of Ireland — but never made a return journey to Birmingham.

The sim build had been interesting and I was quite pleased with what I had created so far. Though it was far from finished, it did actually work very well indeed. But I was getting more and more ambitious, wanting extra screens for maps and the like. Switches and knobs. Levers for flaps and wheels for trim. 

What was it to be? And where would it end?

Well, everyone wants to create a spare room 172, it seems! And when they have, next it's gonna be a garage Boeing...

I wanted neither.

Just look at this panel! Its ridiculous complexity of controls and instrumentation, with everything possible to need crammed into a space no wider than my outstretched arms.  How and why was this possible and even necessary? I don't know but intend to find out! 

One thing led to another...

I'd also tried out the Flightgear Cessna 337, and well, I'd fallen in love at first flight... 

I flew this plane, stop by stop, each and every day, and by degree I eventually flew it around the entire coastline of the UK and Ireland without serious mishap. 

I then discovered the '02' military version of the civilian '337' and the deal was sealed... 

The standard military version ~

And the very first stealth aircraft!

Now I wanted a Cessna alright — but one that is to my mind — easily the most interesting Cessna of all time... 

The 'Oscar Deuce'!

I thought that I'd let the sim be as it stood. I'd enjoyed knocking it together bit by bit and it just worked well enough.  But I now had even greater ambitions. I decided that I would knuckle down to the far more complex and involving task of building a decent replica of not just the 02 panel, but the cockpit too.


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