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captaingps

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About captaingps

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  • Birthday 01/01/1970

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    http://www.cockpitgps.com

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  1. Pete, I think your updates to GPSout worked well. I just ran the latest version of GPSout. I ran the Lowrance AirMap 500 emulator on a laptop with GPSout 2.57. I had also taken your suggestion and eliminated the redundant fields. I used Sentences=RMC,GGA,GSA and Speed=4800. I used the same scenario of a heavy crosswind. When I flew in a manner so that the AirMap 500 TRACK matched the AirMap 500 BEARING, the XTK (cross track error) remained essentially zero. This is how I recommend navigating in the real airplane. Thus, I consider your update to be a success -- thank you. As a matter of interest, I also observed the magnetic variation difference that David Fournie had observed. I found that the magnetic TRACK reported by the AirMap 500 varied by a couple of degrees from the magnetic TRACK indicated by the Flight Simulator GPS. However, from my understading of the issue, any change to GPSout to cure this would cause the GPS to not work in such a way as I just described in the previous paragraph. Thanks again, John Bell
  2. Pete, I think your updates to GPSout worked well. I just ran the latest version of GPSout. I ran the Lowrance AirMap 500 emulator on a laptop with GPSout 2.57. I had also taken your suggestion and eliminated the redundant fields. I used Sentences=RMC,GGA,GSA and Speed=4800. I used the same scenario of a heavy crosswind. When I flew in a manner so that the AirMap 500 TRACK matched the AirMap 500 BEARING, the XTK (cross track error) remained essentially zero. This is how I recommend navigating in the real airplane. Thus, I consider your update to be a success -- thank you. As a matter of interest, I also observed the magnetic variation difference that David Fournie had observed. I found that the magnetic TRACK reported by the AirMap 500 varied by a couple of degrees from the magnetic TRACK indicated by the Flight Simulator GPS. However, from my understading of the issue, any change to GPSout to cure this would cause the GPS to not work in such a way as I just described in the previous paragraph. Thanks again, John Bell
  3. Pete, Thanks. I will give it a try when I get home. John
  4. Peter, In another thread, I discussed using your GPSout program with the free Lowrance emulators. I put 36 knot wind from 297. When flying a heading of 010 at about 97 knots (indicated airspeed) the GPS in Flight Simulator indicates a track of about 030. I didn't do the math, but this looks about right. Using GPS out on either the Lowrance 500 or 1000 emulator, it indicated a TRACK of about 010 when it should have been 030 due to the wind. To eliminate this as a problem with the Lowrance emulator, I found the same result when I select GPS tracking in Garmin MapSource. I was using the following .ini settings: Sentences=RMA, RMC, GGA,GSA Speed=4800 Interestingly enought, when I run the same Flight Simulator flight with a Garmin aviation handheld using Aviation in and simulation mode on the GPS and Sentences=AV400 and speed=9600, the TRACK is displayed correctly on the GPS. My comments are meant strictly in a constructive tone and as an attempt to isolate the problem rather than a rant about a free program that you have taken the time to develop. It's a cool program. Thanks, John Bell
  5. David, Thanks for the info! For anybody following the thread: You can download the Lowrance 500 and 1000 emulators at http://www.lowrance.com. They are free. You can then download the Jeppesen database from Lowrances website and save it in the Map0 foder of the emulator. The Jeppesen database works in the emulator for free. You will have to run the emulator on a different computer than the computer that you run Flight Simulator on. Use Peter' Dowson's GPSout and a null modem cable to connect the two. I found that the following .ini settings worked: Sentences=RMA, RMC, GGA,GSA Speed=4800 If you play with the emulator, you can set it up to accept NMEA in. DON"T DO THIS! This will probably work if you have a real Lowrance 500 or 1000, but just start the emulator and it should get a position. I only found one problem that I will adress in a seperate thread. The value of TRACK displayed on the GPS is the heading rather than the TRACK. Thus if you are flying a heading of 000 with a massive wind from the west, the GPS will show 000 instead of a more easterly heading such as 020. By the way, this works correctly with a Garmin GPS using the AV400 input. Thanks to David Fornie for getting me up and running with this and of course thanks to Peter Dowson for writing GPSout. John Bell
  6. I just posted a message to rec.aviation.simulators and thought that I might be able to interest you. I have no idea what is involved or if it would be possible to make Lowrance's free emulators work with Flight Simulator, but I thought that I would send it your way. Thanks, John Bell Here is the posting: I want to throw out an idea for anybody who is interested and has the skill to implement it. Lowrance offers emulators for their aviation handhelds at http://www.lowrance.com in the software section. The emulator does not include any avation data, but you can load the Jeppesen database into the Map0 folder and the emulator will use it -- no purchase necessary. I was hoping to find a way to use this with Microsoft Flight Simulator or perhaps provide a spark of interest in somebody with the skills and interest to make it happen. I am not an active simmer. However, I think that simulator programs such as Microsoft Flight Simulator make and excellent training tool. I have written a book on using GPS at http://www.cockpitgps.com. One of the greatest limitations of GPS is pilot proficiency. I feel that using GPS with Microsoft Flight Simulator is one way to get proficiency. However, the GPS included in Flight Simulator is different enough in my opinion to cause negative learning. Fortunately, there are third party solutions to use a Garmin aviation handheld as well as a Garmin 530. For the Garmin aviation handhelds, Peter Dowson's excellent program GPSout, http://www.schiratti.com/dowson.html, works well. I have also found http://www.reality-xp.com/ works well for the Garmin 530. I cover more details in my freely downloadable book. Thanks in advance, John Bell http://www.cockpitgps.com
  7. Doug, I just got in and gave it a try and it works. I had an old laptop with DeLorme Street Atlas 7.0. I think that I used Garrmin NMEA mode. I used a null modem serial cable, you might see it called a Laplink serial cable. I used the following gpsout.ini settings. Sentences=RMA,RMC,GLL,GCA Interval=200 Port=COM1 Speed=4800 Interval=200 might be fast, and you can probably remove RMA, RMC, GLL, or GCA. I just wanted to see if it would work and it did. I also got it to work with Garmin Mapsource. Hope this helps, John Bell http://www.cockpitgps.com
  8. Has anybody seen or managed to use an actual Garmin 400 or 500 series with GPSout. There is a demo mode which is available via pin-select when the unit is not installed in an aircraft such as in a docking station from http://www.lonestaraviation.com, http://www.lonestaraviation.com/Product20Stations. I have found that GPSout works well with the Garmin III Pilot and Garmin 196 which I have addressed in a previous thread. Thanks, John Bell
  9. Richard, I should have warned you that I have not tried any of the Palm programs, but that I was just steering you towards some possibilities. John Bell
  10. Try http://www.palmflying.com, more specifically http://www.palmflying.com/mininav.html John Bell
  11. Pete, Here is my guess as to why the GPS position and the Flight Simulator position drift apart: I think that the GPS mode uses the position when the GPS simulator mode is started. After that it calculates the position based on the cumulative effects of speed, track, and time. Without GPSout and Flight Simulator, the user moves the rocker pad to adjust the track and speed and then the GPS position moves accordingly. The altitude on the GPS does seem to get an update from GPSout. Thus, I see this whole issue as a function of the GPS internal software relating to the GPS simulator mode rather than the dead reckoning mode, which is meant to handle a lost signal. I certainly would not fault GPSout. In fact, I really do not fault the internal functioning of the GPS either, using the GPS in simulator mode with GPSout is an added bit of functionality that you have managed to coax out that it was really not designed for. I do think the re-alignment trick is useful for anybody flying an instrument approach using Flight Simulator and one of the Garmin handhelds for reference using GPSout. One reason that I am responding to your response is that I fear that my spending several posts on the issue may have inflated the importance of the issue rather than merely reflecting my interest in the matter. The other thing that I want to do is once again express my admiration and appreciation for GPSout. I am not an active simmer, but I have thought that being able to interface a handheld GPS with Flight Simulator would be a fantastic training tool. You have figured out how to do it with GPSout and it works great. Once again, thanks, John Bell
  12. Mannie, Hopefully I am not violating good taste by suggesting my book, Cockpit GPS. Considering that it is a free download at http://www.cockpitgps.com , I think that it is within the bounds of good taste to post the information here. There is a link to voluntary payment, feel free to ignore that – most people do. However, definitely sign my guestbook or send me feedback if you get something of value from it. I find the most useful core fields on the map display to be TURN, OFF COURSE, and DISTANCE to NEXT. You can also try the HSI display on the map page, but go the HSI or panel page, press menu, and change the bug to read BEARING instead of TO COURSE. I find a feature that many GPS users miss out on is the ability to edit a route using the map. Create a route from origin to destination. From within the route, press MENU and select Edit on Map. Move the cursor to the route until it turns to dashed lines and then press ENTER. Now you can drag the route where you want it. Press ENTER when you get it where you want it. You can also create the whole route in a similar manner rather than just modifying the route. Most Garmin mapping GPS receivers, both aviation and non-aviation, have a version of this feature. John Bell
  13. Pete, I did some more playing with the drift issue that I had previously mentioned. I really have not discovered much new; however, I though that I would take a couple of minutes and post what I did find. It appears that the simulator mode of the GPS may integrate the speed and track over time to reach a position. Thus, the position appears to drift a little flying from place to place. Perhaps the GPS position does not change until it disagrees with the GPS position from GPSout by some error value. I don’t know beyond relatively uninformed speculation. For example, I started off down the runway and hit pause on FS about halfway down the runway. The GPS continued straight ahead based on its track and speed at the time of the pause. At about the end of the runway, the GPS position jumped back to the point that I hit the pause. To be able to jump back to the paused position, the GPS must be getting updated positions from GPSout. Changing the GPSout rate to 200ms appears to make the drift diminish just because the update rate for the speed and track is faster. For some reason, the effect seems less when the simulator is flown back to the airport of departure. Perhaps the way FS calculates groundspeed in the context of the curvature of the earth may be a factor. Although, it would certainly be better if GPSout combined with the GPS did not exhibit this behavior, it is not a big deal. I rate the significance of this as a minor issue at worst and is probably more a function of the internal software of the GPS than it is of the GPSout program. Where the user might notice this is that if the GPS to navigate to the runway threshold instead of the airport, he may find that the threshold and the GPS position are several hundred feet off. Generally, the GPS will show the aircraft traveling right down the center of the runway in real life. However, I have seen it off in real life were the GPS track shows the aircraft just off of the side of the runway even though the aircraft was on the runway. Thus, there is a certain “reality” introduced by the error. The very simple work around is to quickly stop and restart the simulator mode on the GPS. A good time for this might be when approaching the airport. As always, submitted in the context of humble constructive feedback as opposed to being a complaint. John
  14. Pete, Have you contacted anybody at Garmin with regard to using the Garmin format rather than the aviation format? If not, send me an e-mail at johnbell@cfl.rr.com with your e-mail address and I will see if I can find anything out. Not that I have any special connections, but I may have someone that I can write to. It would be great to be able to use a non-aviation handheld GPS with Flight Simulator. Thanks, John Bell
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