Sim Day 1
PHEW… just back from SIM… needed to hop right into the shower trying to relax.
So the good news… day one of SIM training is over and both my instructor and my captain both said they have seen worse and that everything should be much smoother tomorrow.
And the bad news… flying a King Air 200 SIM from the right seat is freaking HARD!
For the first flight of the night, I was PM (pilot monitoring) and my job was reading checklists, settings coms and navs, talking to ATC and supporting my captain. It was pretty clear and although we thought we had been practicing the SOPs (standard operating procedures) that once we get into the plane, it is a whole different store and that we still have LOTS of work to do to get on the same page for the level of CRM (crew resource management) that is going to be needed in this airplane. The good news is that I think my use of radios and reading checklist and assisting the PF wasn’t too bad so it will hopefully just be some polishing required.
The for second flight, I was PF (pilot flying) and it was finally my turn to take the controls and get the airplane into the air. It did take a bit to get a hang of the taxing and the take-off, but it wasn’t too bad. Then my task was to fly up to 5000 ft and then start the upper air-work including steep turns – my nemesis. Rolling into the first turn, my brain said – oh boy this attitude indicator is incredibly sensitive and seems to operate opposite to the instruments I have used in the past. And over the next 15 mins this continued to plague me as I tried to continue the procedures. This SIM is very touchy so it is going to take some time to get a hang of the maneuvers. I then proceeded into the stalls and those weren’t too bad with pretty basic recovery techniques. What is going to need some work is memorizing the maneuver configurations that are required in our SOP.
We then tuned up then got our approach clearance so I transferred the control to my captain and I briefed the approach, which started to feel good again as this is an area of IFR flying that I am fairly comfortable with. Transferring back the control, we setup the autopilot for the approach and flew it down to minimums where I had to disconnect the autopilot and finish the approach and landing by hand flying. The first few landings were a little sketchy as I was trying to land it like a Cessna and ended up ballooning instead of the smooth flare transition – clearly this is also going to need lots of work.
The night ended with a very thorough briefing with our instructor where he reiterated that we needed to both get much more familiar with the SOPs and working together as a crew. We also learned that in the next session we will be focusing on some abnormal procedures, followed by missed approaches and some more landings.