VGDS Tweaker

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Introduction

This manual explains the usage of the VGDS Tweaker tool. VGDS Tweaker is is a tool that produces models of visual guidance docking systems for use in your scenery.

You might wonder why you need a special tool to do this? Why did i not just release a library with the different models in it? This is because the docking systems have some code that is heading depended. Therefore you need to tune your model for the heading you want to use it at. Instead of making a library with a lot of versions, it is easier to use a tool to create the models that you need.

The models are using the FS2004 MDL techniques, but they do also function in FSX.

How to create a MDL

The figure below shows the basic user interface of VGDS Tweaker.

On the left you see a list of all available types of docking systems. Below that is a description of the currently selected docking system. On the right you see a preview picture of the currently select sytem and the settings of the object you are creating.

Vgds tweaker.jpg

When you want to produce a new MDL file for use in your scenery, you need to take the following steps:

  • Select the type of docking system you want to create
  • Enter the heading with which this system will be used. This is the heading the aircraft has when it is parked in front of the system. You can use the button labelled FS to read the current heading from Flight Simulator. To use this function you need to have the FSConnect module installed.
  • Enter the distance of the stop point. This is the distance in front of the system that the nose wheel of the aircraft is supposed to stop.
  • If you wish you can enter a visibility range as well. This can be used to limit the display of the total system, as it makes no sense to drawn them while you are still on final approach miles away.
  • Click the "Create new MDL" button and select where your new MDL file must be saved. You can also set the default output folder, so that you don't have to browse to that folder each time.
  • For some models you will have to enter a lateral distance as well. This is the perpendicular distance from the lead-in-line the aircraft is following to the location where the model is placed.

Now you have a MDL file that you can use in your scenery like any other MDL file. So you can include it in the object library of your scenery and then place it with an XML file or a placement tool. To function correctly you must place the model with the same heading you entered while creating the MDL file.

Available docking systems

The following types of docking systems are available in VGDS Tweaker. If you have created your own docking system and would like to see it included in VGDS Tweaker as well, please contact me.

SafeGate

Safegate.jpg

The SafeGate docking system, is available in two different version. There is a normal version that has the following functionality:

  • A row of lights to indicate your distance till the stopping point. Each meter you come close an additional light is turned on. When the two bottom lights are blinking, the system is active.
  • A bar, mounted in front of the docking system, that provides you with visual feedback about your lateral position. As long as the bar is lined up with the aircraft symbol behind you are on the leadin line.
  • A text window that can display messages. The following messages are supported: WAIT, STOP, OK!, TOO FAR.

The ActiGate version is supposed to be used together with the ActiGate module (available from FsDeveloper.com as well). This version gives you the following additional functionality:

  • The OK! message when parked correctly will only show, once you have set your parking brake.
  • The text window will show the type of aircraft while docking. The folllowing types of aircraft are supported:
Airbus A300Airbus A310Airbus A318
Airbus A319Airbus A320Airbus A321
Airbus A330Airbus A340Airbus A380
Boeing 707Boeing 717Boeing 727
Boeing 737Boeing 747Boeing 757
Boeing 767Boeing 777Boeing 787
Fokker F28Fokker 70Fokker 100
Douglas DC-8Douglas DC-9McDonnell Douglas DC-10
McDonnel Douglas MD80McDonnell Douglas MD-11Lockheed L1011
British Aerospace 146Canadair CRJTupolev Tu-134
Tupolev Tu-154Tupolev Tu-204Yakovlev Yak-42
Ilyushin Il-86Ilyushin Il-96Embraer Emb-135
Embraer Emb-140Embraer Emb-145Embraer Emb-170
Embraer Emb-175Embraer Emb-190Embraer Emb-195

SafeDock

Safedock t2ams.jpg

The SafeDock docking system, is available in two different version. There is a normal version that has the following functionality:

  • On both sides of the system, a bar is shown on a screen to indicate the distance to the stopping point.
  • On the top of the system, a arrows are shown on a screen to indicate the lateral position of the aircraft.
  • A text window that can display messages. The following messages are supported: WAIT, STOP, OK!, TOO FAR.

The ActiGate version is supposed to be used together with the ActiGate module (available from FsDeveloper.com as well). This version gives you the following additional functionality:

  • The OK! message when parked correctly will only show, once you have set your parking brake.
  • The text window will show the type of aircraft while docking. The folllowing types of aircraft are supported:
Airbus A300Airbus A310Airbus A318
Airbus A319Airbus A320Airbus A321
Airbus A330Airbus A340Airbus A380
Boeing 707Boeing 717Boeing 727
Boeing 737Boeing 747Boeing 757
Boeing 767Boeing 777Boeing 787
Fokker F28Fokker 70Fokker 100
Douglas DC-8Douglas DC-9McDonnell Douglas DC-10
McDonnel Douglas MD80McDonnell Douglas MD-11Lockheed L1011
British Aerospace 146Canadair CRJTupolev Tu-134
Tupolev Tu-154Tupolev Tu-204Yakovlev Yak-42
Ilyushin Il-86Ilyushin Il-96Embraer Emb-135
Embraer Emb-140Embraer Emb-145Embraer Emb-170
Embraer Emb-175Embraer Emb-190Embraer Emb-195

AGNIS PAPA

Agnis papa azimuth.jpg Agnis papa distance.jpg

The AGNIS/PAPA docking system consists of two components, an azimuth indicator to guide the direction of the aircraft and a distance indicator to guide the aircraft to the right stop position. For each of those components there are two versions available. One to be mounted on a (terminal) wall and another one mounted on a pole. The following functionality is available:

  • Azimuth indicator shows two green lights when on the right heading or else one green and one red (with green being the direction the aircraft has to turn).
  • The distance indicator will show two red lights and the word STOP when the stopping distance has been reached. The model only supports one stopping distance for all aircraft.

Support

If you have any questions, suggestions or comments about VGDS Tweaker, please let me know. You can reach me either by email or through the forums of my website FSDeveloper.com.

User license

(c) 2005-2010 SceneryDesign.org / Arno Gerretsen

This software program is distributed without charge to other scenery designers, redistribution of the original ZIP file is allowed. You are NOT allowed to sell this software program or ask money for its distribution. MDL files created with this software program can be used in commercial scenery projects if you wish.

The copyright and any intellectual property relating to this program remain the property of the author.

The software distributed in this way may represent work in progress, and bears no warranty, either expressed or implied.