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Cessna 172 pilot with no training, no hours, only flight simulator experience. Takeoff and landing

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Pilot has zero hours flight instruction, and has never been in a private plane. His only training is on a desktop flight simulator. Instructor has 18,000 hours of flight time and is a CFI and commercial airline pilot, presently flying 757's and 767's. This flight challenge occurs with no in-flight assistance, verbal or mechanical, nor any other aid from the flight instructor. For the full backstory check out: http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/34/other-other-topics/prop-bet-can-i-land-plane-first-try-1200028/#post32862445
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Text Comments (2286)
Ryan Matthew (26 days ago)
Right rudder!
circa326 (1 month ago)
I wish I could get this chance, say to myself that i could fly for real as well. One day when I get a real job ill go for it
Phil Anderson (1 month ago)
Need to find someone to drive a car, fly a plane and take down a crime syndicate with only GTA experience
Chris Berg (1 month ago)
What a Great Job! That proves it!
Martin Miazga (1 month ago)
Pilot: Where are the flaps Instructor: [Silence] Me: [dying of laughter]
Shawn Huffman (1 month ago)
As a private pilot who started playing sim games as a kid, I know the feeling! Sims are a good tool for learning basic flight mechanics, not a full substitute for the real deal though.
Jamie Hamilton (2 months ago)
Any suggestions on the best flight simulators?
coolandmellow (2 months ago)
Bulshit
Richard Belanger (2 months ago)
Well don, I am impress being a pilot myself!
georgesmoulin (2 months ago)
Instructors says "I got the airplane" right after touchdown
AJ Sap (2 months ago)
I think video games in general aid much more than people think with flying a small single engine. I was naturally really good at take offs and landings, but because I never played true Sims, it took me a few hours to really understand the detailed stuff.
andreatheflyer (2 months ago)
The only thing that reveals you are used to flight sim only is a relatively poor pedals/rudder job, seems like you corrected lateral deviations with yoke/ailerons only and so the plane kept oscillating (i understand that even if you have the flightsim with yoke and pedals, the pedals feeling is always far from realistic). Otherwise great job, man.
Freshwaterboy (2 months ago)
I did this too except for the landing.
David Thomspson (2 months ago)
that was scary
Bobby Tucker (3 months ago)
I have to say I'm impressed too, I'm sure many have told you that. I haven't read any of the comments here either. Just out of curiosity, did you friend in the right seat have to change his underwear? lol. This video is what, 6 years old? anyway, you probably have a bonified private pilots license now. One more thing does your Instructor friend happen to know Jack Armstrong, he's an aircraft consultant I knew in Las Vegas. Thanks for sharing this video, I enjoyed it.
MrThommo78 (3 months ago)
Great job mate! 👍
VeganTard _ (3 months ago)
I was too distracted by the loose engine cowling to notice the flying....
Joel MAZUROK (3 months ago)
Wooah Great job
rob wilkinson (3 months ago)
I finally got to have a go in a real plane (172 actually) last year. Amazing experience, hard bit was that the instruments were on the pilots side so reading the airspeed etc was pretty tough going. Would i like to fly all the time? dunno, its expensive for one thing. I worked 14 years in aviation on small fixed wing planes and heavy rotory (S61) I am more intrigued by rotory wing craft and wouldnt mind a go in an R22 maybe
lcpLJC888 (3 months ago)
you did very well but I think you went too far in the runway.
Zach Mauro (3 months ago)
How hard is it to fly with ADHD?
Joseph Caesar Padrón (3 months ago)
You said no experience and training. Even the Department of Defense classifies simulators of any sort, including “video games”, as training. The statement at the beginning is contradictory.
rinuncular too (3 months ago)
Simulators are very good these days, but you nailed it, even your flare was pretty good. Well done. Just remember those rudder pedals for keeping her straight and true on the runway.
Elon Musk Fan (3 months ago)
Takeoffs are optional. Landings are mandatory.
Joshua Potter (3 months ago)
If the barefoot bandit kid can do it
YounG MychaL (3 months ago)
I thought I was the only one who asked these questions. I like it let's see where this goes.
Charles Ncharge (4 months ago)
Good job bud. I hope you enjoyed your experience.
BoussoleFire (4 months ago)
I can see sunrise manor from the take off point
7Pines Knives (4 months ago)
That was fantastic!, I fly Flight Simulator X and have always wondered the same thing. Could I fly an airplane in real life. Well, You answered that!
Ted Stryker (4 months ago)
On my first instruction flight, the instructor had the power control, I had the yoke. On the take off rotation, on climb out he said... Microsoft Flight Sim, huh? To an instructor, a first time flying anything pilot, and a first time real world flying sim pilot are worlds apart. Every instructor I ever flew with or met recommended some type of flight sim as a training aid. As an instructor, I always recommend some type of sim based supplement to actual training. It cuts training costs way down.
Puck Master Rex (4 months ago)
So because I played Janes F/A 18 Super Hornet a lot as a kid I'm good to night qual on a carrier!!!!! Just kidding this is awesome. I'm partially colorblind so I cant fly. Not that I can't distinguish colors, more like hues.
Joash Church (4 months ago)
9:44 I was waiting for that.
Reality Bytes (4 months ago)
I'm a retired Commercial Pilot/CFII and I've often said the only salient difference I find between flying Flight Simulator on a PC and real world flying is the lack of g-force sensations and change in air pressure as you climb. But then, I was the opposite of this guy having had thousands of hours flight experience before these types of Sims ever existed. I think he did a great job of demonstrating capability of today's simulator software. To me, real world training combined with flight SIM practice should develop a new pilot's competency at a seriously rapid pace.
Harrison William (4 months ago)
There is a reason simulators are used to train pilots.
X S (4 months ago)
BALLS!!!
Michael Avery (4 months ago)
A little over/under rudder control and subsequent turn coord, but I am totally impressed. It has got to be way different when your desk chair is gyrating around.
Michael Avery (4 months ago)
I trained in N9578H South Al. area
Mike Lee (4 months ago)
Uggghhh that Mooney!!!👍👍👍👍
J M (4 months ago)
Starts at 7:36 i dont know what all that other stuff before this time was included for.
Stewart T (4 months ago)
One Brave Instructor. I dont think I would have agreed to that deal. But. Congrats. You seemed like you really stuck that landing. Crosswinds or just couldn't level??
T. Sparks (4 months ago)
The latter. :-)
Another Channel (4 months ago)
I flew a cessna a few days ago having never been in a plane and I'm 14. It was nice but I was to short to see over the front so I couldn't land it.
gedgar2000 (4 months ago)
Nailed it. Very good. I hate that long an approach VFR, but it sounded on glide slope, and if you were doing it that way in the sim... We didn't have simulators back then, but I soloed in only a few hours and could have pulled this off. I might have sat in the plane for an hour and done some visualization work. "Where are the flaps?" Shouldn't have been voiced. But you can't really miss them. Gravity fed fuel. Fixed gear. Modest horse power. Stable. Perfect plane for an exercise like this. For my first single hole Pitts Special ride, I'm glad it wasn't my first time in a tail wheel airplane. It was my first time in a Pitts.
jameshisself (4 months ago)
Ha! Read the thread comments on your link and having a laugh now, as I'm sure you were. All the 'real' pilots will have a knee jerk response to shoot this down, after all it invalidates their training. I've down some real flying with family and a stint in the military but now I'm no more than a sim pilot. But I can say that a good sim pilot can make a passable real pilot as long as he doesn't choke under the pressure of the reality of the situation. The good sims weren't designed for children and can be useful tools for real pilots if they get their ego out of the way.
Bob Sullivan (4 months ago)
"I've got the airplane." So...The answer was no, you couldn't land it.
Robert Dougherty (4 months ago)
So...what happened? Was it a successful landing solely by the novice? I thought I heard the right seater say he was “taking the airplane”?
T. Sparks (4 months ago)
Successful takeoff, flight of the pattern, and landing. Instructor took the plan right after touchdown, per our agreement.
mr dashin (4 months ago)
I think simulators are misleading.
Brian Payne (4 months ago)
Well done
Dr Aguilar Aguilar (4 months ago)
Congratulations man! Good job!
Pushyhog (4 months ago)
Way to far out and way to low. Keep close traffic patterns, cessnas are good for dropping in w/full flaps. Stuff u will learn. Do not quit, u might like king school stuff on your laptop. I turn my kx-99 on alot at home and just listen to tower & traffic.
Pushyhog (4 months ago)
Probably quiet a few young people can do this , even 17 years old, but thank god u still haf to get a license. 1600 hours/1987. Alot to do other than flying in a traffic pattern. I hope you finish an get your ifr rating.
wleg0 (4 months ago)
About 1960 my brother (two years younger) took flying lessons and after four or five hours fired his instructor and bought a J3. He got an ex-air force guy in town to solo him and when he landed I got in and he started teaching me. I had five hours and we were hanging out around the airplane when a joker friend of our showed up and dared me to take off. It was a dare I couldn't resist. I took off (my legs shaking so badly I could hardly keep them on the rudder pedals) came around and greased it back on the ground and taxied back to where my brother and joker friend were standing. There was total silence and then the joker said "bet you can't do it again". Now full of confidence, I took off again came around touched down and bounced to the end of the airstrip (the worst landing I ever made in that J3, the first landing was a pure accident). By 1972 we had two kids, boy 14 and girl 12, who were driving my wife and I crazy picking at each other. I said to my wife " we got to do something to grow these kids up quicker", I think if I teach the boy how to fly he might mature faster. Without telling him what I was doing, I put him in the front seat of an Aeronca Champ and told him to taxi any where he wanted to on the farm, just stay out of the soybeans. After a hour of taxing up and down the dirt strip I told him to taxi with full throttle, push the stick forward to pick up the tail and then at 45 mph to pull the stick back to takeoff. I gave him four hours of flying and hints, got out and told him to take off, that was when he realized he had been taking flying lessons. He soloed and we never saw much of him after that he flew away, he taught himself ground school, got his PPL, went to the Air Force Academy, went in the Air Force, flew A-10s, got hired by Delta and now flies the B-777 international. When the girl got 14, I soloed her after nine hours. It grew'um up fast.
ROOKTABULA (4 months ago)
Is it legal for a certified pilot to enable a non pilot to operate a plane?!?
J mor (4 months ago)
How any hours on the flight sim ?
Dj Project (4 months ago)
I fly RC Airplanes and Helicopters. Some planes are acrobatic and some are electric EDF’s. My oldest Daughter bought me a 2 hour flight experience at our local airport. I was able to choose which of a few planes I could go up in and fly. I picked an Extra 300. It was a blast!!! I was able to do loops and rolls!! The G’s were crazy. I had to take about an hour nap/rest once I got home. The pilot said I really did a great job flying and the G’s might mess me up for a little while. I couldn’t believe how responsive that plane was. It had ailerons that were huge, they went the full length of the wing!! It was so responsive, like flying a Ferrari in the air!!! VERY COOL, Thanks, Nessa.
behringerelectric (4 months ago)
I was impressed. Looks like you were fighting a bit of crosswind. At your speed with no wind, I have no doubt it would have been steadier. Nice work.
Gerald Scott (4 months ago)
As a former private pilot, there is one thing you cannot get from a simulator, and that is the feel of the plane and what it's doing. You also need to develop a feel for the controls. You can watch the instruments all you want. But until you get used to the feel, you will not be able to fly. Maybe one in a million.
gnarly Harley (4 months ago)
Very impressive!!!!
sarge505050 (4 months ago)
Future member of the Trump Space Force.
Mad Marc (4 months ago)
Wooh !!! , sick dude ! What flight simulator have you been practicing on ?
pa226pable (4 months ago)
Wow
James Olson (4 months ago)
Blah, blah,blah blah.
MrAdvantage1 (4 months ago)
Is this legal? Lol
EVH911 (4 months ago)
Years ago I had a friend who was a CFI on Citation X's. He took me to the local airport to fly in a real Citation X sim. He gave me 15min of training in the left seat, pointed me towards San Francisco International airport, left the cockpit and said land it. It was rough but made it down safely. Felt like it was real. Had no flying experience, but a lot of basic knowledge.
Michael Hovanec (4 months ago)
Good job
FCoxUSMC (4 months ago)
First time I got to fly a Cessna 172 I Was 14 years old. I had an uncle that owned his own plane and airstrip. I loved it so much I joined the USMC and became a plane captain.
brazilianEYEreportU (4 months ago)
well done, now try this on a R22 helicopter
Geoffrey Carpenter (4 months ago)
Cool . Tail dragger maybe bad .
Art Wallace (4 months ago)
Great job!
David Jessee (4 months ago)
Is it impressive? Sure... But very irresponsible!!!
Press Master 1 (4 months ago)
Good job bro!!!! That’s fucking awesome!!!
wraqi (4 months ago)
Brilliantly done. Sketchy but you made it so bravo.
Carl Swanson (5 months ago)
I did it about 20 years ago, flew a 172, along with a CFI, from Port Mansfield to Cameron County, did a touch and go and landed it. I'd flown with him in the past just never took off and landed. Flown several different planes with him since.
Ivan Ferrol (5 months ago)
Nice.
NukeDaddy (5 months ago)
That was a very nice touch down considering.
Bill Callahan (5 months ago)
Could you like speed up the opening? Okay, what's the big whoop in flying an airplane? Power, Speed, Rotate, Up, Down, Land, Done.
Matthew Van Helden (5 months ago)
Wownice job dude.
matt bowen (5 months ago)
I'm impressed
tom thompson (5 months ago)
amazing results
Dale Bolen (5 months ago)
What. No preflight
James Snell (5 months ago)
great video
ValJanela (5 months ago)
It's all about being Aviation obsessed I think. If you can't do it for real, then FSX is the next best thing. Except your computer chair doesn't suddenly drop 500 feet if you hit turbulence!
ValJanela (5 months ago)
There used to be a part two, where the instructor takes over the plane after landing and taxis to the stand, anyone know where it is?
ValJanela (5 months ago)
That is just silly. Most people have some kind of background music on their vids. I've used a backing track on my flight here, and that is still up. https://youtu.be/E2vC7hOiBjA
T. Sparks (5 months ago)
Youtube took it down. I had copyrighted songs in it, and that's a no-no. Just tried to upload it again, nope, no go.
Tom Morrissey (5 months ago)
I'll call B.S. without watching. Lol
Charles Wesley (5 months ago)
Thank God he is with an instructor . My instructor was sitting right beside me during my solo , though he was talking to me from the ground . I knew just what he was going to be looking at and saying . Thats training .
Mark l (5 months ago)
I know what you were feeling I did the same thing kinda. A guy that work next to me a few bays down invited me to go flying with him in his single-engine Piper Cherokee. He took me up once we were in the air I asked him if I could fly it he said sure so I took over. Did real well. So the next time we went up he asked me if I want to sit left seat he wasn't feeling well I said sure. From my flight simulator experience I was able to on my own take off climb out trim the plane and maintain altitude within 50 feet I did all the flying that day on the way back with runway in sight he asked me if I wanted to land I said sure.. so I got us lined up slowed the plane down trimmed it for my flap setting and reduced speed I'm settled into my Glide path have a crosswind from my left so I lowered left wing gave it a little right rudder once over the runway about 3 ft in the air chopped the power plane settled in stall horn went off scared the crap out of me. Did A Perfect Landing. He was a flight instructor. As I was taxi and back to the hanger said he couldn't believe how good I flew the plane with no previous instruction. Told him I had many hours on the Microsoft flight simulator.
airmuseum (6 months ago)
I'm one of those old DOT/FAA "Master Pilot" pelicans. ATP ASMELS Rotor & Glider IA&I & GIA&I. Been flying sixty years continuously. The major difference between flying a sim and the real deal is the loss of kinesthetic sense in your ass and no control pressure feedback from the airplane. Other than that Mrs. Lincoln..how did you like the play?
hondaxl250k0 (6 months ago)
hell ya!! good job man! you really smoothed out right when it counted..
Gazoline (6 months ago)
were are the flaps and instructor is like you figure it out
William Thompson (6 months ago)
well done
Jonny Sprague (7 months ago)
Not to shabby. Little bit of pilot enduced occilation on final but not bad at all! Congratulations.
Vincent Venturella (7 months ago)
I liken this to an attorney, performing his first appedectomy, on himself ! dumb ass !!!
Budwiser (8 months ago)
Impressive. Well done. If you placed a 15 foot by 4 inch iron girder on the ground and you are asked to walk along it , most people can do that. Place the same girder between two buildings two storeys above the ground and ask them to do the same... whole different ball game completely. Great video thanks
Jobber (8 months ago)
Most people can fly planes
B Kailua (8 months ago)
I have been flying airplanes for 45 years. We trained in sims at the airline and a simulator no mater how crude will help you learn faster. Anything that teaches you how the controls work improves your flying skill. A lot of people look at a PC simulator as a Game and discount it as useless for flight training. We use PC training and have found it reduces pilot training time and saves the student money. We can also show in a sim what can happen if you do something very wrong and crash without all the FAA paperwork and NTSB investigations funerals ect. The sim is a valuable tool for flight training.
Thomas Ali (8 months ago)
Well done.
Charlie Ramone (8 months ago)
Irresponsible
Davld Bigman (9 months ago)
Well done, l have been flying MFS For over 20 years. I have always wanted to do exactly what you have done there but so far I haven't gone out and done it. Kudos to you for getting off the chair and getting in the sky!
Pirabee (9 months ago)
There. Now you see why it’s important to treat Flight simming with a little more seriousness!
I learned to fly on a 172 Cardinal. With NO adverse problems or tricky crosswinds .. avoiding any "jockeying" and obeying the checklist ratings - anybody can fly one of these! If you can get one of these to train on.. you will get your ticket (if you can get past reading the sectional charts and passing the written) "flying" is the easy and fun part! -
Paul Bordelon (9 months ago)
Not bad at all! Yes, BIG difference between simulator and real life!

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