Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Just wondering how hard it is to fly a Cirrus with that joystick. Is it hydraulic or manual? Its not even centered, it's off to the side. If you ask me it's awkward. I have always wondered how it would be to fly a plane with an off centered joystick. Feel free to comment. Thanks


The company’s selection of the G3000 is yet another commitment to provide unparalleled performance with the very latest in innovation and capability that complements the aircraft’s luxurious interior and advanced manufacturing techniques pioneered by Piper. By integrating the G3000 in the PiperJet, Piper takes yet another step in providing advanced, cutting-edge technology to the marketplace.

“The PiperJet is an amazing aircraft with a unique blend of capabilities that makes it the best-in-class choice for pilots focused on performance, style, utility, capability and pricing,” said Piper President John D. Becker, who led the engineering team that brought the PiperJet from concept to first-flight and beyond. “We have a long and rich relationship with Garmin, and our choice builds on that legacy while incorporating avionics excellence equal to the PiperJet’s promise.”

Designed specifically for Part 23 turbine aircraft, the G3000 is Garmin’s evolutionary leap forward in taking glass avionics to a much higher level. It seamlessly integrates numerous Garmin-designed system components into an easy-to-use flightdeck, the heart of which is the all new GTC 570 vehicle management system: a 5.7-inch diagonal touchscreen controller that uses a desktop-like menu interface with intuitive icons. The console-mounted GTC 570 allows full control of radios, audio management, flight management, weather systems management, synoptics (graphical systems displays) and other key vehicle systems.

“The PiperJet’s revolutionary design and impressive performance have positioned it to be another great Piper aircraft,” said Gary Kelley, Garmin’s Vice President of Marketing. “We are proud to continue playing a vital role on the PiperJet team with what we believe will be one of the most intuitive and powerful flightdeck systems ever designed for Part 23 turbine aircraft.”

The PiperJet team emphasized that the G3000’s focus on being intuitive is key to melding with the PiperJet’s focus on avoiding needless complexity and enhancing user-friendliness. With an icon-driven interface that leverages the experience Garmin gained by designing and delivering millions of automotive consumer products, the G3000 will play an integral role in making the PiperJet second to none.

By eliminating buttons, switches, and extraneous knobs, the touchscreen G3000 relies on common sense functions that have been the mainstay of cutting-edge smart-screen technology in consumer electronics. In effect, the G3000 lets pilots quickly retrace their steps or alternatively return to the home screen. The system has gone to great lengths to ensure simplicity in operation.

“PiperJet pilots will have the ability to reach out and touch real-time information,” said Becker. “Gone will be the days of looking for cursors and cryptic confusing menus that lead to heavy pilot workloads.”

The G3000 is versatile, with the GTC 570’s incorporation of three conventional knobs at the bottom of the display: a volume control knob, dedicated map joystick and dual concentric knobs for data entry. Pilots are consequently able to use the knobs in addition to the touchscreen to enter information, and the knobs’ functions are always labeled on the display.

The primary flight displays (PFD) and multi-function display (MFD) are large, high-resolution, wide-aspect ratio displays. The landscape oriented displays make it possible to have an enhanced view of Synthetic Vision Technology (SVT™) that displays three dimensional terrain, obstacles, pathways, and traffic. Situational awareness is enhanced further with a large inset map and an extended horizon line.

The G3000’s large MFD also has split-screen capability so that two separate vertical pages may be viewed side-by-side. Pilots may simultaneously view maps, charts, TAWS, flight planning, weather or video input pages. In addition, aircraft synoptics can be graphically depicted on the MFD to help simplify monitoring and speed troubleshooting.

As with the Garmin G1000®, the G3000 has full reversionary capabilities, including in-flight dynamic restarts, so that all flight critical data can be transferred seamlessly to a single display for added safety during flight.

The G3000 also includes a fully capable three-axis, fully digital, dual channel, fail passive auto flight system. The autopilot includes features you would expect in this class of aircraft, including coupled wide area augmentation system (WAAS) approaches, vertical navigation, and flight level change (FLC).

In addition, the G3000 features Garmin’s synthetic vision technology (SVT™) that presents 3D depictions of terrain, obstacles, traffic and the runway environment, replicating what pilots would see outside the cockpit on a clear day. The G3000 avionics suite also integrates synoptics (graphical systems displays), Garmin’s SafeTaxi®, FliteCharts® and ChartView (optional), which simplify operation, enhance situational awareness, and increase safety during flight and when taxiing.

The G3000 adds significantly to state-of-the-art safety measures featured in the PiperJet’s design. With its strong, smooth all-metal body, the PiperJet is capable of reaching a cruising speed of 360 knots and a maximum operating altitude of 35,000 feet. The six passenger PiperJet – with an option for either a seventh seat or enclosable lavatory – offers a mission-capable profile and sensuous luxury that set the standard in its class, with a range of 1,300 nautical miles and a full-fuel payload of 800 lbs.

The PiperJet proof-of-concept aircraft continues to advance through various stages of flight testing. To date the aircraft has logged in excess of 230 hours of flight time and 160 flights.
From Flight Into Known Icing (FIKI) to FADEC, the PiperJet’s focus is on optimal operational excellence, user-friendliness, and safety. Its design focuses on versatility and an elegant melding of form and function. Configured to be flown by a single pilot, the PiperJet will be certified in the Normal Category under FAA Part 23 and applicable foreign certification standards. It will also be RVSM certified. Moreover, its innovative design includes ample baggage space and class-setting useful load. The PiperJet will be certified to a maximum operating altitude well above the weather while combining performance with the latest safety technologies and features.


OSHKOSH, Wisconsin — Apple’s iPad continues to find a very receptive audience in the aviation community. This week at Airventure, a number of companies are offering applications for the device ranging from simple study guides to weather and navigation tools aimed at pilots.
The most interesting use of an iPad is in the iCub. When we wrote about the cockpit use of the device last month, the idea was still just a concept. But Sportair USA flew its iPad-equipped light sport aircraft to Airventure and its been drawing a steady audience all week.
The airplane is modeled on the classic Piper Cub that trained generations of pilots starting in the late 1930s. SportAir has updated the airplane with some modern conveniences, including using the iPad as the glass panel display in front of the pilot.
Sportair’s Bill Canino has flown the iCub several hours now and says the iPad works great for for the light-duty panel needed in an LSA. In addition to using the iPad for GPS navigation, he can also use an app that replicates a more typical glass panel display with an artificial horizon, airspeed indicator, altimeter and compass.

The iPad equipped iCub
The iPad is mounted on a bracket that makes it stick out about an inch from the existing panel. Canino stresses the device is not to be used as the primary instruments, but says he was surprised with how well the faux panel works. The iCub comes equipped with the minimum standard instruments required by the Federal Aviation administration.
Canino’s only real complaint (other than not being allowed to use the 3G in flight) is the glare on-screen. He says the company has been testing some anti-glare shields, and says it will be necessary to find one if pilots want to use the iPad while they’re flying.
Another new entry into the iPad marketplace is aviation stalwart Jeppesen. Founded by an airmail pilot in the 1930s who took notes about airports he flew in and out of, Jeppesen is the industry standard for airline pilots and many others who regularly use instrument approaches in bad weather.

Jeppesen flight charts on the Apple iPad
Typically, a pilot would have to carry a few large briefcases filled with notebooks that contained the paper versions for the thousands of instrument approaches across the country. With its new app, Jeppesen says 965 megabytes is enough to have all of its approaches for the entire world.
There’s still a big debate amongst pilots on whether or not such a device should be counted on as a primary source of required navigation information. Commercial pilots still must carry a paper or certified electronic version of approach charts. But for flight planning and even in cockpit use, an iPad equipped with navigation charts is very convenient.


I was interested in information about the 180. It seems to have a high usefull load compared to a 172. I fly a 172 at the local FBO and it can haul my family but no baggage. Is it a constant speed prop or a fixed pitch? Does is drop like a rock and easy to land or not? Is it stable in flight to do IFR training? Just a few questions I need an opinion on.


Does anyone have a copy of AOPA AIRPORT'S print edition? I was wondering if it was worth the expense considering you can get the mobile or ipad/ipod version for free. Does it have more information or less than the digital version? Just a couple of questions that I'm sure a lot of people would like to know the answer to. Thanks

Saturday, January 29, 2011


The HINCH VOR is out of service and the FAA doesn't want to repair it. It's a major navigation aid in central Tennessee. The FAA is taking a poll to see how much it's used before they decide whether or not they are going to repair it. The FFA is leaning toward a GPS takeover if you ask me. Don't get me wrong, GPS is great but VOR's are a great backup and also still a good form of primary navigation. Pilots are still trained to use the VOR so I guess eventually GPS instead of VOR will be on all pilot exams.

Friday, January 28, 2011


The Apple Ipad and the Ipod Touch have become very popular with the aviation community. With thousands of apps and moving map capability, every pilot shouldn't do without one of these. I currently use WINGX for the Ipod Touch. It does everything I need and more. Weather, moving map, flight planning, terrain, radar, and lots more. Later in the year WINGX is going to be coming out with a new version that also has Sectionals and many more updates. Anyone looking for something different than Foreflight that does everything, this is a must have app. If anyone is looking for an Apple Ipad for a very reasonable price, I found this one on Amazon. The price on this would be hard to beat.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


I am a new pilot and I was wondering if anyone knows how much typical maintenance costs are on a Cessna 172 for example. I hope to someday have a plane and I really don't know very much as far as how much on average these costs are. I know that the 172 is one of the less expensive planes to own and operate but it still isn't cheap I'm sure. I know the annual inspection is a large part of the cost but are there any other major costs I need to know about besides engine and/or propeller overhaul. I have asked other pilots about this but I'm wanting more information from other people. Thanks

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


The most nervous I have ever been was when I took my private pilot check ride. It had practiced and practiced  and studied like I was on a mission. Then the day arrived. Nervous is not the word to describe it. It was a very cloudy day but still VFR and I had to meet the DPE at 10:00. I went to the airport and did a preflight check on the Cessna 172 I was renting from the local FBO. I got in the plane and took off for a 40 minute flight to meet the DPE. It was a smooth fight there on a very calm day. I landed and got out of the plane, grabbed my stuff and went in to meet the examiner. It was 10:00 right on the dot, no exaggeration. He was nothing like I thought he was going to be. He was a very laid back person who made you feel very relaxed the whole time. This was a relief. We went in the conference room and filled out the paperwork in the Internet and did the oral exam which went fine. I messed up a couple of times but that wasn't a problem. After about an hour or so he said lets go fly. I was still not too nervous so we went to the plane and he said do a soft field takeoff and I did and then I started flying my flight planned route for about 10 minutes and he said were low on fuel divert. I diverted to a small private airport with trees all around it. It was hard to see for me and the DPE. He said do you see it, I said no sir I don't, he said I don't either. Well I finally saw it but it wasn't easy. After that I did slow flight, stalls, steep turns and an emergency landing. The steep turn was done facing at a water tower then started the turn then rolled out facing the tower again. This made it very easy. I was relieved after I did it with no problem. I then put on the foggles and he said put my head down. He took the plane and put it in a near stall and said recover and I did that very sloppy. After that he put it in a dive and said recover and I did that with no problems. He then said to do a couple turns and a constant airspeed descent and I finally got to take off the foggles. He then said to turn right 080 and I did and immediately was lined up with the runway on an extended final. He said straight in approach short field landing. I told him that I usually fly the pattern and he said straight ins are just fine with traffic in the area. Well I landed fairly well and then he said make this one a full stop. I pulled over to the building and stopped and he turned to me and said congratulations, you're a private pilot. I tried to act normal and not too excited but I it was hard. I was relieved. We went in and finished up the paperwork and he said, are you hungry?, I said I'm starving. He then drove us to a small restaurant and we ate a hamburger. After the burger we went back to the airport and I flew back home. I have to admit that it was a lot less stressfull than I ever imagined. I'm sure some DPE's are different than others, but it was a very thorough exam. I didn't do everything perfect but it was good enough to prove to him I was a safe pilot. I think to any examiner, this is the primary concern. If anyone has a private pilot check ride story to tell please leave a post. 


I am a new private pilot and was wondering if anyone knew what would be a good first plane. I have a wife and three kids and was wanting some thing affordable and that doesn't use too much fuel. If anyone has any suggestions, please make a post. Thanks