Call Sign: Mole
Internet Connection and speed: Broadband at 36.8 down and 3.8 up.
Timezone: GMT, based in UK.
Language: English, French, (German).
Availability: Most nights, subject to family demands and commitments, but 5 hrs ahead of most of you guys.
Hours in DCS: Started with the original Lock-On way back when, so must be several hundreds of hours. I currently probably put in about 5-10 hours flying time per week.
Originally very enthusiastic about A-10 and SU-25 on release, but went mad for the Ka-50, many, many hours in that. Currently focussing on the Gazelle, which I can cold start, and getting up to speed on Nav and Radio. I fly all the DCS helicopters, rarely fly the fixed wings these days. Used to be able to cold-start the Shark, but got lazy, and the Mi-8 likewise.... I love the Huey too, so I basically have all the DCS rotaries.
I have a nice pit setup, with customised MSFFB stick and custom-built collective. 2 screens attached to a GTX 1070, and a fast PC.
My first simulation experiences go back to ZX Spectrum days in the early 80's, but I loved Digital Integration's amazing Hind! when it came out in '97 and of course Microprose's Gunship!
I have dipped in and out of DCS Multiplayer over the years, but have been looking for a helo-centric group like yourselves for some time.
Mission Editor experience: I have knocked out a few SP missions in ME for my own use, for when I simply want to set up an alternative shooting/nav practice scenario. So I understand the principles, but have not delved into triggers and complex ground and air battlefield set-ups. I am no stranger to complex set-ups of other kinds, and can deal with spread-sheets and other management tools, so I am sure I could get to grips with ME with some guidance.
Preferred Chopper: I have enjoyed getting to know all the DCS machines over the years. Sometimes I am amazed at how many years I have been active on them. The Shark remains a strong favourite, simply because of its strength and reliability on the battlefield, and its awesome firepower and stand-off capability. I love the Mi-8 and the Huey too, and look forward to seeing more developments on the cargo and troop movement levels of immersion. I think once we see actual troops in our passenger areas, sitting clutching their equipment, or running off to cover, DCS will be delivering a credible transport scene.
Like many, I seem to be putting all my hours in the Gazelle since its release. Still finding it twitchy, and I cannot let go of the cyclic for more than a second as its FFB is not yet implemented. Just starting to experiment with the trim system in more detail too.
Also like many, I am looking forward to the day that one of the developers announces the road-map to a release of a Mi-24....
What am I looking for here? I am hoping to get some flying time with some fellow DCS Chopper enthusiasts, many of whom are undoubtedly more experienced and better pilots than I. I want to get some education, and co-operate on organised, structured missions with real world, real person interaction, not simply pitching myself against the AI. I suppose its that thing also of increasing the immersion in a sim, whereby my actions have real effects in a fantasy environment, and create responses from fellow pilots of either appreciation, or dismay. I like to fly fast and low, I like to blow stuff up, I like to rescue lost patrols and pilots, deliver urgent materiel to the frontline and limp back to base for a beer in the mess.
A bit more...: I am now semi-retired, having run my own company for 20+ years. I am a trained garment designer/maker and have worked in the fashion/private commission and film costume world during that time. My time is very much my own now to manage, so long as dinner is on the table for my wife and son when they get in! Nothing to do with the military, apart from making the occasional uniform.... Flight simming for me has always been an extension of my childhood love of model making from Airfix to Tamiya and little lead soldier wargaming.
I hope that the time difference between your HQ and mine does not mean that I can only fly with you when I am considering falling asleep! With planning, the benefit of an afternoon "disco-nap" can probably solve that. I am generally a bit of a night-owl anyway.
I have flown a real helicopter, under instruction (!), some 15 years ago, a Robinson, and loved it. The instructor commented that my cyclic handling was impressive for a novice, and I attribute that to long-term simulation use! And it gave me the bug for choppers, though I had to wait for a the amazing DCS products to come along to come anywhere close to the real experience.
Conclusion: I hope I have something to bring to the table, and I would be honoured to fly alongside the venerable members of BSD, many of whose posts I have regularly followed on the DCS forums. I look forward to hearing from you, hopefully positively!