Aussie Man Builds $300K Flight Simulator

Earning Matthew a Guiness world record during his decade long journey, his Boeing 747-400 flight simulator has cost him over $300,000 and probably given him countless hours of pure joy in the flight deck.Australian flight enthusiast and flight simulator guru Matthew Sheil has finally built what is probably one of the coolest toys on the planet. But it’s so much more than that.

Earning Matthew a Guinness world record during his decade long journey, his homemade Boeing 747-400 flight simulator has cost him over $300,000 and probably given him countless hours of pure joy in his virtual flight deck.

Sheil’s sim is almost identical to the $60+ million professional simulators used by pilots around the world. It features breathtaking graphics, the ability to fly to and from 27,000 different airports around the world and real world weather conditions with stunning accuracy. Of course, all with the help of 14 different computers running 45 different software applications. (You thought you were cool because you had Flight Simulator X running on your Quad-Core and some rudder pedals?)

To add more ingenuity to the mix, Sheil’s simulator features full-blown advanced hydraulics. “When you taxi out on the runway you feel it bumping on the cracks in the pavement, you feel it when the wheels touch down,” said Sheil.

But what makes his sim even more special is that anyone with a copy of Flight Simulator X and a joystick can join him in his digital travels from the comfort of their own home. By joining VATPAC (VATPAC is the home of live simulated flying and air traffic control for thousands of VATSIM members in the Australia-Pacific area) you can be one the many pilots to join Sheil in his 14+ hour nonstop flights.

Every year, Sheil and dozens of other enthusiasts from all over the world participate in an event called Wordflight to raise money for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. “It’s all done in real-world conditions - Qantas sponsors us and they provide airline food for a week.”

Truly amazing news from down under showcasing one man’s passion for aviation and technology. We look forward to joining you in-flight soon Mr. Sheil!

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