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Thread: What flight/engine instruments do we really need?

  1. #31

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    Funny story about idiot lights:

    One of my EAA brothers put a fancy computer thingie in his KR2, which was a very good thing and a sorta-not-so-good thing.

    Good in that when his original engine, a long time one that was billed as "good running" turned out to be the opposite of it, and when the oil pressure plummeted he made for the runway and had it crap out when he was in good position for a safe landing.

    Bad in that in re-programming it with the newly rebuilt engine one of the parameters wasn't programmed correctly, blinking red at him when something hit the bottom of one of the operating ranges (I can't remember which one). So it was yelling at him that everything was working okay. He was about to start saying many bad words back on the ground when he decided to check the computer stuff and then started laughing when he spotted the issue and corrected it.

    Um, I'll bite, May, what's a green landing light?
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  2. #32
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Giger View Post
    Um, I'll bite, May, what's a green landing light?
    I suspect it's one of the green lights that come on when a landing gear leg is safely down and locked.

    Ron "Gear down and welded" Wanttaja

  3. #33

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    Thanks, Ron.

    I sometimes forget people own aircraft with stuff like retracting gear, doors, and roofs.

    Frank "Your plane gets so dirty you put a vacuum pump on the engine?" Giger
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  4. #34
    Mayhemxpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Giger View Post
    Thanks, Ron.

    I sometimes forget people own aircraft with stuff like retracting gear, doors, and roofs.

    Frank "Your plane gets so dirty you put a vacuum pump on the engine?" Giger
    I like that. One thing my plane doesn't have is a vacuum pump. Actually only one light for the landing gear. I suppose the theory was that your gear is either safe or unsafe, and if unsafe it really doesn't matter which one.

    The more I fly/operate complex planes the more I wish I had never sold my Warrior.
    Chris Mayer
    N424AF
    www.o2cricket.com

  5. #35

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    Some are easy to add. For instance this one

    (10) Landing gear position indicator, if the aircraft has a retractable landing gear.
    In my fixed gear I just added a note on the panel that says "Gear is always down". Difficult to make an error that way.

    The required seven instruments (more if you have more) do make sense. What you need legally and what you use are two different things.

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mayhemxpc View Post
    Just have the green landing light bulb burn out on you. That will get your attention fast. I have had it happen twice -- once on my return from OSH this year. It is, however, the only important interior bulb that has failed on me.
    Been there. The SIC grabbed the checklist and said that we needed to use the blow down bottle. I looked around for a paper bag for him to breath into, then unscrewed one of the lit bulbs to swap out for the unlit one. Developed the habit of testing the torque of the bulbs on the gear indicator on A/C new to me.

  7. #37
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Giger View Post
    Frank "Your plane gets so dirty you put a vacuum pump on the engine?" Giger
    Zen thought of the day:

    If you clean a vacuum cleaner, you BECOME a vacuum cleaner.

    Ron "Ooommmmm" Wanttaja

  8. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mayhemxpc View Post
    I like that. One thing my plane doesn't have is a vacuum pump. Actually only one light for the landing gear. I suppose the theory was that your gear is either safe or unsafe, and if unsafe it really doesn't matter which one.

    The more I fly/operate complex planes the more I wish I had never sold my Warrior.
    Only one light? I guess thats the reason the USAF made everybody aboard wear a chute and hard hat.

  9. #39

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    I had a conversation about this topic with a pilot friend of mine and it went a different direction - when do you actually need instruments.

    For example, he pointed out that we (he's a low and slow kind of guy, too) only use our altimeters to help establish pattern altitude when approaching an airfield, but we do use them for that. And at that time there's not really a good substitute.
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  10. #40
    FlyingRon's Avatar
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    The day, five weeks after 9/11, that they finally let me get my plane out of VKX I lost the static system shortly after takeoff. Actually, the only thing I was particularly concerned about upon reaching my destination was being slower than the Navion's rather low gear speed.

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