Pilot software except vPilot, SquawkBox, FSInn and XSquawkbox
By Randy Tyndall 1087023
#327007 I'd really like some ideas with getting my Dash 8-Q400 up in the air...correctly. Here's the scenario. While waiting for Majestic/Fanda to get a payware version of the Q400 out I chose to download two freeware versions, a Q400 from Dreamwings and a Q300 from Fanda, so I could save for the payware when it arrives.

The DW Q400 flies great and looks clean, but it comes with a B737 panel...not very realistic. The F Q300 has an awesome panel, but for the life of me I cannot get it to fly straight and level. I went through the detailed checklist meticulously and can start it from “Cold and Dark” and go all the way to “cleared for takeoff” (figuring out how to raise the control lock was the hardest part). On T/O roll, the nose immediately comes up like the aircraft is trying to rotate. Upon becoming airborne, it goes into a 60 to 80 degree pitch up attitude and flies at that pitch, throttles wide open. I use the provided Load Planner from Fanda to load Pax/Cargo/Fuel. I know not to use the default Fuel/Payload tab. However, when I look at that tab (as all my passengers are “falling” toward the tail) I can see three things that are not right.

First, the CofG is in the front of the aircraft, not within the mean aerodynamic chord. As an aside here, so is the CG for the Dreamwings, yet it flies great. In the aircraft.cfg file the reference datum point is 0,0,0 and the empty CG point is 0,0,0.

Second, the Empty Aircraft weight is 27 lbs on the MSFS tab, even thought the .cfg file shows 27,500 for the empty weight. If I remove the comma to make it 27500 the weight shows up correctly in the MSFS fuel/payload tab. More on that later.

Third, the max aircraft weight shows 43 lbs, not the 43,000 lbs in the .cfg file. Again, removing the comma makes the weight show correctly in the fuel/payload tab.

Please remember. I am not changing any weights/pax/fuel from this window. I do use the load planner as recommended by Fanda. I simply look at this tab to try and figure out why the aircraft won't fly.

Leaving the .cfg weights at 27/43 respectively makes the aircraft shoot almost straight up in the air, which is why I can “fly” at a 60-80 degree pitch and not stall. Removing the commas to get 27500 and 43000 results in the aircraft never leaving the ground and an extremely long time to get even up to 80 knots.

So, here's what I did. I read all the forum articles on merging the Dreamwings aircraft (which you remember flies great but the panel sucks) with the Fanda panel, which is awesome. I did exactly what the merge instructions said and the Fanda Panel looks great in the Dreamwings cockpit and functions just like it did in the Fanda, except now the Dreamwings Q400 is acting just like the Fanda Q300. You might say I'm doing something wrong in the cockpit with my settings/switches/etc, but I don't think so. I have tried to do the sample flight that comes with the Fanda (a 10-page tutorial talking you thru every phase from preflight to start to takeoff.) here's another reason why I don't think it's me.

The merge file instructions came from the FlightSim website and were authored by Nigel Grant. I would have thought it would make more sense to move the Fanda panel into the Dreamwings aircraft file in FS9, but his instructions have you take a copy of the model and texture files from the Dreamwings and place them in the Fanda file. So really all I'm doing is adding another fltsim file in the aircraft.cfg file. I think it's the data that comes after the fltsim files (one for each aircraft livery, including the Dreamwings livery) that screwing me up.

Any ideas?
By Chad Black 858402
#435737 Sorry to bring up n old thread, but I'm having this exact same issue. I have used the Dreamwings fanda merge for the Dash 200. The CG is all the way forward and when I take off the plane acts like it wants to do a nose wheelie. Any cure for this?
By Randy Tyndall 1087023
#436685 Chad,

I never did figure it out and gave up trying a long time ago, but if you succeed, more power to you. Actually, I have reached a stage in my virtual career where I love a challenge. I may take this one on again since I have a Vistaliner B735 that does the same thing now.

I'll let you know what I find out. May be awhile, but I will repost here and let you know how I did.

Cheers...and good luck... :D
By Randy Tyndall 1087023
#439514 Chad,

I figured it out today...nothing better to do on Christmas...but it's late and I'm tired, so I will post the details tomorrow. Simple, really, as long as you already have a Dash 8, preferably a -300, that flys the way it should using the panel that came with it. But I also got a -Q400 and a -100 to work as well. Normal climb, cruise, descent, approach...the works. The Fanda panel is a real terror until you get used to it...having the switches in the correct position to start the engines, taxi, and takeoff. Practicing the tutorial will do wonders for you.

More tomorrow.


By Randy Tyndall 1087023
#439585 Alright,

I finally got the Fanda Dash8-300 panel successfully merged with three different Dash 8's. All three fly well, no nose up problem. I'm not really sure what I was doing wrong before, but apparently if you walk away from a project for awhile and come back to it things "look" different.

Very simple really, using Nigel Grant's excellent tutorial found here:


I'm pretty sure...I honestly don't recall...my mistake was in downloading the suggested Dash 8 to merge with the Fanda Panel. It was an FS2002 aircraft that had been modified to work in FS2004. Before attempting the merge I never flew the aircraft to see how it flew, just did the merge and tried to fly. In the months since I tried the first merge I had since deleted both the aircraft. The original aircraft because it did not fly with the merge and the Fanda because it had no liveries I was interested in...but flew great.

So, this time I basically started fresh with one exception, I already had proven freeware Dash 8's I was using with liveries I liked, a DH8A in a Delta Connection paint from Premier Aircraft Design, a DH8C in an ERA Aviation paint also from PAD, and finally the Dreamwings DH8D Q400 with a ton of liveries from Horizon to Royal Jordanian. I flew all three aircraft many many times and they were stable in all phases of flight. In every one though there were things about the panel that were, shall we say, less than desired.

Using those three aircraft for my model and texture sources, I downloaded and installed the Fanda Dash 8 again. Following Nigel's tutorial I made a copy of the model folder for each of my Dash 8's and renamed them "model.100", "model.300", and "model.400". These three model folders I moved into the aircraft folder for the Fanda, so I now have 4 model folders in the Fanda Folder.

Next I moved one texture for each model folder I moved into the Fanda Aircraft folder. Then I went into the Fanda acft.cfg file and added the textures using standard aircraft livery addition procedures (see Nigel's tutorial). So now I have all the original Fanda textures, plus a texture for the -100 model, the -300 model, and the -Q400 model. Those acft.cfg entries must reference the appropriate model folder.

So, for the Fanda Liveries my entry is "Model=". For the 100 my entry is "Model=100", for the PAD -300 my model is "Model=300", "Model=400" for the dreamwings. Make sure the "texture=" line matches the textures you moved there for each specific model.

There are some drawbacks to having all the models and textures in one folder, though. The aircraft lights for one. They are hanging out in the air on the -100, perfect for the PAD -300 (since the Fanda is a 300) and somewhere inside the body of the aircraft for the -400 Dreamwings. It's because the lights position is established by the acft.cfg file and there is only one config file being used by all four aircraft (the Fanda, the two PADs, and the DW). So, once I had one aircraft folder (Dash8-300-2) set up and working I simply copied that folder, renamed the copy to "Dash8-100-2" and "Dash8-400-2" and copied them back in to FS9. Now I have three aircraft folders and four models, the -100, the PAD -300, the Fanda -300, and the DW -Q400. Now I can adjust the light positions however I want using the individual acft.cfg's..

The only real remaining drawback is that the -100 reaches takeoff speed very quickly, since the model is much lighter than the -300 specifications loaded with the acft.cfg and in the AIR file. I just use less throttle for takeoffs and cruise. Another is the Q400 characteristic of a quieter engine doesn't sound quiet. I tried to chage it by using the DW soundfile, but there are missing sounds and some that just don't sound right so I'll leave with a louder "quiet" Dash8.

...next is trying to figure out how to incorporate Ernie Alston's ISG1 FMC to get updateable AIRACs instead of the severely outdated one that comes with the Fanda.

Hope this helps.