The VSKYLABS Polaris AM-FIB Project

Fast-Guide instructions for use with X-Plane 11 flight simulator

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The VSKYLABS Polaris AM-FIB is designed with simplicity and functionality in mind, resulting with a few interactive feature for your use (when flying with/without VR gear). It is an amphibious vehicle which can be operated from both land and sea, instantly.

Complementary information:

  • The VSL Polaris AM-FIB Project is designed for use in the Experimental Flight Model Mode of X-Plane. In order to use it, please go to the General Settings window in X-Plane 11 and mark the Experimental Flight Model checkbox. You will need to reload the aircraft right after.

Make sure that X-Plane is setup for MAXIMUM REALISM: This should be set up in the Joystick setup window (all sliders should be dragged to the left for "0" values.

The VSKYLABS Polaris AM-FIB

Specifications ( FIB & AM-FIB Rotax 582):

Type: Weight shift microlight two seater - Hydro.

Empty weight: FIB Kg 220 – AM-FIB Kg 250.

Max Take Off Weight ( MTOW): Kg 450.

Allowed load: FIB Kg 230 – AM-FIB Kg 200 (pilot+passenger+fuel+luggage).

Wing Span: 10.60m.

Wing surface: 18.40 sqmt.

Load Factors : +3.8 – 1.5 G ( safety factor 1.5).

Stall Speed: 48 Km/h (~26 knots).

Cruising speed: 65/70 Km/h (~37 knots).

Max speed: 80 Km/h (~44 knots).

Ceiling: 2500m above sea level.

Climb rate: 2-4.5 m/sec.

Fuel tank: 40 Lt (+ 55 Lt optional).

Fuel consumption: 12-18 Lt/h.

Power plant and standard equipment:

Motor: Rotax two stroke, two cylinder, water cooled, twin ignition,

twin carburetor, 64 hp ,582 cc, reduction gear box type C, exhaust silencer.

Propeller: 3-blade wooden propeller (with changeable pitch on the ground).

Cockpit instrument console:

Water temperature instrument gauge.

Engine hours counter gauge.

Engine RPM gauge.

EGT gauge.

12 V plugs on panel.

8 amp/h 12 Volt battery with rectifier tension regulator.

Instruments Panel

The main instrument panel is located between the pilots legs, and like its real-life brother, holds in only very few indicators: EGT, RPM, Water temp and Fuel level indicators. Switches consists Igniters ON/OFF, Master Battery and Starter switches.

A fully functional GNS-530 and a Smart-Phone showing basic flight data are also installed, although airspeed indicator on the FIB (and also on other trikes) is practically a none-used instrument. Trike/flex wing pilots are usually not using an airspeed indicator, as they feel the speed in the control bar and other factors. This applies also to "stall warning", which is very clear on the control bar.

Since flying a trike in a simulator is different in so many aspect that in real life, and doesn't include the real "feel" of the control bar and its interaction with the airspeed, the airspeed indicator shown on the Smart-Phone application might become handy on the first two or three flights, right until you will learn to "feel" the speed without looking at it.

Manual Throttle

The VSKYLABS Polaris AM-FIB is equipped with manual throttle lever, located on-top and in-front the pilot's head. Although this configuration is not existing in real life, it may be very useful for flying in VR, using the VR touch controllers.

Speed figures for Flying the VSKYLABS Polaris AM-FIB safely:

Stall Speed: 48 Km/h (~26 knots).

Cruising speed: 65/70 Km/h (~37 knots).

Max speed: 80 Km/h (~44 knots).

Take off - allow the aircraft to develop enough airspeed (above 26 knots). You can monitor the airspeed in the Smart-Phone, but quite fast, you will learn how to "feel" it as the ground/water will pass you by, and the wind-sound will get familiar to your ears. Push the control bar gently, and as lift off occurs, let it go a bit, and control the rate of climb, allowing the aircraft to gain airspeed (above 30 knots is fine).

Cruising along - Reduce engine power for comfortably 35-40 knots cruising speed. Once again, you will learn to evaluate this speed simply by learning the needed power and wind blowing sounds.

Loosing altitude - While descending, monitor airspeed, as gravity will "help" the aircraft to accelerate. Vne of the FIB is about 43 knots, but the virtual model is design to withstand higher airspeed, simply because the lack of spatial and sensual sensation while flying in a PC based simulator. So the aircraft will tolerate a bit of higher airspeed before braking apart.

Landing and stalling - The FIB is "full of drag". The good thing is that it allows steep and tight finals. The bad thing is that you must pay attention to engine power in relation to nose attitude (or sink rate), Don't let the speed come less than 28 knots, unless you are flaring. Keep your power up and don't worry - killing excessive potential with the FIB is VERY easy.

Land or Water Configuration

The VSKYLABS Polaris AM-FIB is allowing you to change its configuration between water and land operations very easily:

To change the Landing Gears configurations simply click on the RIGHT side of the boat (while sitting in the cockpit). The landing gears will animate to the up/down position, along with the rope which is holding it when retracted.

Pilot and Passenger Configuration

To make the pilot object visible/hidden, simply click on the pilot's seat (while sitting in the cockpit). By hiding the pilot object you will be able to operate the FIB with a clear 360 degrees all-around view.

To load/unload passenger, simply click on the passenger seat (while sitting in the cockpit). The passenger will be added to the AM-FIB, along with her weight, with each click. Alternatively, you can set the payload using X-Plane's weight and balance/payload menu to exceed the passenger weight. When the passenger weight will exceed approximately 60kg (~132 pounds), the passenger will turn visible.

Brakes/Anchor Operations

Brakes: Originally, the AM-FIB is not equipped with wheel brakes. However, and for the purpose of adding comfortable conditions in the simulator, the VSKYLABS AM-FIB main landing gears are equipped with brakes, which may be very useful when operating over inclined surface in X-Plane. To apply or release the brakes, simply click on the LEFT side of the boat. Alternatively, you can click on the 'Brakes' icon located on the Smartphone screen.