-Statement about the Auto Pilots in the R4D and FS2002

7th January 2002

There have been a number of Auto Pilot problems, with FS2002 and the R4D, some real and some imaginary or caused by stupidity.

Firstly Stupidity, and the reason for the "Fix" I published on the site during Christmas.....
Bill and I were over run with “Registrations” from genuine people, and I, for one was been pestered by loads of people that were “to lazy” to read the instructions and ZERO the three dials on the Sperry, which caused the aircraft to violently pitch up or down when the modern autopilot was engaged. I knew through earlier experiments that Version 2.78 of FSUIPC didn't care if the Sperry was ZERO'd or not, so I published the "Fix" to install that to stop the flood of emails, which it did. 

If you read the instructions carefully you can use the modern autopilot with versions 2.79 (as installed with the package) and 2.80 of FSUIPC without problems. In fact that is better for other reasons. However for people that cannot read :-)) version 2.78 is the easy option.

Now to the MS problems.
MS in their wisdom, have organised the internal AP instructions so that as soon as it is engauged, it acts as if ALT and HDG HOLD have been engaged on whatever is the current altitude and heading.
This effect can be removed by adding these lines in the aircraft.cfg :-

MS have also somehow locked the HDG so that when the AP is engaged at all, you can no longer adjust the heading with the Yoke, Joystick or keyboard. On all tests here the above lines in the aircraft.cfg make absolutely no difference to this or anything else other that mentioned above.

MS have also reversed some of the variables in the gauge programming within FS2002, which causes the Sperry to do strange things.    Really helpful. !!!!
In conjunction with Arne Bartels the designer of the Sperry, I have produced a new Sperry that we are now testing that solves these problems. If all works well we might release this in the not to distant future. 

There are some fairly strong rumors that MS are going to release a “feature enhancement” or “fix” to you and I, in the near future. That would be good, but obviously might cause other problems, so we will have to wait and see. 

I hope this helps you understand the truth about the difficulties with the AP in the R4D and with FS2002 in general.