Guide to Ramp Starts

Starting with X-Plane 10.50 and WED 1.5, ramp starts can be customized with a lot of data to help specify their use. Ramps starts should be designed based on their use in the real world and should never have aircraft objects placed on them.

Ramp start type

The majority of ramp starts should be either Gate or Tie-down spots. Static aircraft will show up only at these ramp types.

Misc and hangar type ramp starts should only be used for human player starts.  X-Plane will ignore Misc type and will not spawn static aircraft there. When Hangar is set, X-Plane assumes the aircraft is in a building (and therefore not visible) and won’t spend resources placing aircraft there. AI aircraft will use the Misc and Hangar types as a last resort, if no tie down or gate spots are open.

Set only one type from the drop down here.

Equipment Type

This field determines what type of aircraft should use this parking spot. Set at least one type from the drop down here, but multiple types are supported on the same spot.

Size

This field determines what size aircraft can use the spot. X-Plane will use the spot with aircraft that are marked for the size & one lower (i.e., size C will be used by size C & B aircraft).

Ramp Operation Type

To further limit what type of aircraft can use the ramp, set an operation type. Otherwise leave this set to “none.” Pick only one type from the drop down here.

Airlines

Case sensitive! Use only lower case, three letter codes separated by a space.

If you have included more than one airline code in this spot, X-Plane will randomly pick one BEFORE the library is checked. If the airline code X-Plane selected is not found in the user’s library, a random result will be placed instead.

Debugging Ramp Starts & AI Aircraft

If AI don’t seem to be using your airport or ramp starts, there are a couple art controls that you can turn on to help debug the situation. (Note you will need to set the art control then make sure the airport reloads by leaving entirely and coming back.):

  • atc/debug/log_spawn=1  (Prints log info on AI aircraft arrival & departure logic. Use developer console to see this in-sim)
  • airp/debug_ramp_starts=1 (Leaves on screen a bunch of visual debug markers telling you about the ramp starts, so if a static airplane is missing or wrong you can SEE the data.)
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