Hand Flying

When and how often do you hand fly?

Personally for a long haul flight I’ll handfly until I reach 250kts-260kts. Then I’ll engage autopilot vs and if there’s a turn I’ll hand turn.

But I usually hand fly when I’m doing touch and go’s.

It’s good to sharpen your flying skills.

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Depending on departure really.

What do you mean. Like if it’s straight out you engage ap?

Whenever I feel like I’m done. I don’t see a need in setting a limit.

I hand fly every single one of my final approaches.


Fly by hand, to manually maneuver, reach a certain altitude after takeoff and finally to land, is a work of art, some would say.

@Maxmustang, I know, prefer to fly GA. It is the basics of flying, it is where the pilot is in full command and every input you make, counts, where no computer interfere with more rights than your flying skills and expertise. To hone knowledge and professionalism of flying.

I have hand flown a vast numbers of GA aircraft. To count them all, it would take almost forever. My early days of IF back in 2014 consisted of trying to master, how to fly. With the years passed, the knowledge from hand flying GA aircraft has been put to the test. Nowadays I fly major long hauls from and to the most busy airports in the world. Manually takeoff and hand fly up to a certain altitude, could be anything between 10000-15000ft, it isn’t the easiest work to keep the airplane steady for a untrained pilot. As the flight progress, the AP kicks in and takes over the job, but upon landing the big jet, when turning base and established on the glide slope, I hand fly the plane down the last 15nm-10nm down, that way I know I have full control of the aircraft if I were need to go around or adjust my descent, either approach speed or V/S.


Using the F-22 I hand fly more often than not. The only time I tend to use AP is for cruising but sometimes I do that manually as well.

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Hand flying is my life.
I preach it.

Personally, I fly departures manually up to a minimum of 5,000. Typically about 10,000-15,000 though.

For arrivals with active app, I’ll hand fly when I intercept to avoid deviation from the specified path. I disconnect A/P when cleared for the visual. With tower active I’ll normally hand fly down from about 7,000.

Really, hand flying is so beneficial to your skills as a pilot. My landings are typically better than most I watch because I take the time to actually learn how the plane flies. Also, practice practice practice! Solo is your best friend 😁


10-15k wow flying like a champ are you lol

I don’t you ga never had an interest. I’ve always been fascinated by commercial aviation.

As you should. I don’t see the purpose of appr unless the visibility is just too terrible.
But extreme winds no issue even more fun.


After takeoff, I hand fly until 10,000 feet or until I get tired of it. During landing, I disengage A/P a little bit before turning base and hand fly the rest of the way.

I don’t know i don’t see much fun in flying after takeoff during long hauls. I try to upset the passengers too much with jolty turns. Lol that’s what free flying is for.

24/7 considering I’m in the 172 every time I fly since the update. Only time I’m bot is when I’m away from my phone and I usually ain’t away for more than 5 minutes.

In airliners I generally hand-fly the departure, although I usually engage NAV around 2,000 feet, but I control the plane vertically until about 15,000. I hand-fly the approach from about 3,000ft, but it depends on the situation.

As for GA, I am hand-flying almost all the time, unless I am flying longer flights in the TBM or CCX.

I love hand flying and so I’m usually handing flying 60 percent of the flight. I’ll handfly GA ALOT and fly airliners to about FL180 till 280 depending on what I want to do

Take a peek at this.

Same apart from developing my APPR skills.

Unless I’m extremely busy or need to get somewhere, I’ll usually hand fly until I reach about 10,000-11,000 feet, which is when I begin accelerating to 290 knots (or something else depending on the aircraft I’m flying). Sometimes, for older aircraft like the 767, I’ll switch it on when I think it’s okay because it might be a little bit harder to control or something like that.

For approaching, I’ll turn off autopilot once I reach the ILS cone, and then hand fly. In cases of extreme wind or bad weather (such as low visibility), I’ll keep it on for a while, or might even use APPR.

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How much do I hand fly?


|Visibility Level|Where do I hand-fly to?|
|Very Low (<1SM)|To 1000ft AAL|
|Low (1-5SM)|To 2500ft AAL/thrust reduction altitude (whichever is sooner)|
|OK (5-10SM)|To 250kts (between 4000-6500ft)
|Good (10-21SM)|10000ft AAL|
|Very Good (>21SM)|Wherever I feel like it :)|


|Visibility Level|Where do I hand-fly from?|
|Very Good (>21SM|from 18000ft AAL → Ground Level|
|Good (10-21SM)|from 10000ft AAL → Ground Level|
|OK (5-10SM)|Visual Contact w/the Runway|
|Low (1-5SM)|Visual Contact w/the Runway|
|Very Low (<1SM)|Minimums Altitude|

Hope you liked that - thought I would present my operations neatly :)