Flight Planning with ForeFlight, Garmin Pilot, SkyVector.com, FltPlan.com and more + GA News



There are many ways for a pilot to flight plan a trip. Traditionally, it was done with a paper map, pencil, and a plotter. But now there are many new flight planning tools available on the Internet and as smartphone apps for iPhone and Android phones.

We first talk about which percentage of listeners use each tool, then describe the most popular tools, and finally describe how user use multiple tools. Some of the tools described include:

  • ForeFlight
  • Skyvector.com
  • Garmin Pilot
  • FltPlan.com
  • OzRunways
  • 1800wxbrief.com
  • WingX
  • AOPA Flight Planner
  • DUATs
  • SkyDemon
  • NavPlan EFB
  • FlyQ EFB AirNav Pro
  • Mermoz

To reduce iPad discharge in flight, Greg Brown recommended turning the brightness down and this USB charger.

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News Stories

Unstable Approach Definition and Private Pilot Tips for How to Fly a Stable Approach + GA News


You’ve undoubtedly heard of a stabilized approach and know it’s helpful to have one prior to landing. But many pilots don’t know all of the elements of a stabilized approach, or the potential expense of an unstable approach. Last year, two pilots I know dug deep into their wallets to pay for damage resulting from landings that followed unstable approaches. Both considered going around, but didn’t. The pilots of an IFR charter fight into Akron, Ohio in November 2015 weren’t so lucky; everyone died after their unstable approach.

So what is a stabilized approach, and why does it matter? Cirrus Aircraft’s Flight Operations Manual gives a good description. It says: “A stabilized approach is characterized by a constant angle and constant rate of descent approach profile ending near the touch-down point. Stabilized approach criteria apply to all approaches including practice power-off approaches.“ It goes on to say that for VFR landings, an “approach is considered stabilized when all of the following criteria are achieved by 500′ AGL:

  • Proper airspeed,
  • Correct flight path,
  • Correct aircraft configuration for phase of flight,
  • Appropriate power setting for aircraft configuration,
  • Normal angle and rate of descent,
  • Only minor corrections are required to correct deviations.

A go-around must be executed if the above conditions are not met, and the aircraft is not stabilized by 500′ AGL.” This episode contains lots of tips to help you consistently fly stable approaches every time you fly the traffic pattern, including tips for long, straight-in approaches, which often lead to unstable approaches.

Click here for the listener survey. Tell us what flight planning tools you use when planning a longer flight.

Please visit my new Patreon page and make a contribution to help me with my goal of improving the AviationNewsTalk.com website.

You can Dictate a listener question from your phone and I’ll try to answer it on a future show, or send an email.

News Stories

13 Fun Ideas for National Aviation Day + GA News


National Aviation Day has been around for more than 75 years, But it probably doesn’t get as much attention as it deserves. Here are 13 fun ideas for celebrating on national aviation Day, which is August 19.

Franklin D. Roosevelt created National Aviation Day in 1939 by presidential proclamation. Originally it was to celebrate the growth and advancements made in aviation. But one can’t help wonder whether it was also a way to start getting more people interested in aviation got a time when Europe was just beginning to enter World War II. Today we face a different challenge, which is how to attract more people to aviation at a time when pilots are in high demand, but new student pilot starts are declining.

Here are 13 ways that you can celebrate today, or help get other people more connected to aviation.

1. Get someone else involved in aviation.

2. If you are a rusty pilot, get back into flying!

3. Fly in a new airplane type.

4. Watch an aviation themed movie.

5. Fly a flight simulator!

6. If you are a licensed pilot, fly somewhere new!

7. Visit an Aviation Museum

8. Fly a radio controlled airplane

9. Volunteer to help an aviation-related organization

10. Download and read an aviation book from your local library or from NASA

11. Go Plane Spotting

12. Thank someone who works in the aviation industry

13. Take an aviation course

Click here for the listener survey. Tell us what flight planning tools you use when planning a longer flight. Please visit my new Patreon page and make a contribution to help me with my goal of improving the AviationNewsTalk.com website.

You can Dictate a listener question from your phone and I’ll try to answer it on a future show, or send an email.

News Stories

Cirrus Embark – Free Training for Buyers of Used Cirrus Aircraft – Ivy McIver Interview


Cirrus Aircraft announced a ground breaking new program called Cirrus Embark that provides free, yes absolutely free flight training to buyers of pre-owned Cirrus Aircraft. So if you were to buy a ten-year old Cirrus from someone, you can get up to 3 days of free flight training, paid for by Cirrus! It’s called the Cirrus Embark program, and we interview Ivy McIver, SR Product Line Manager at Cirrus Aircraft to talk about the Embark program.

If you are thinking about buying a new, or late model Cirrus, please contact me now, so that I can give you some tips to help you with your decision process. You can contact me here.

Click here for the survey. Tell us which plane you fly most often. Please visit my new Patreon page and help me with my goal of funding the creation of two apps for my show, one for Apple and one for Google Play, so that non-techie pilots can find the show in the app store.

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Low Cost, Garmin G5 Electronic Flight Instrument for certificated, experimental and LSA Aircraft – Garmin Interview – EP14



Garmin recently announced that their low-cost, G5 Electronic Flight Instrument will now be available for use in certificated aircraft. It fits directly into a standard 3 1/8 inch hole used for instruments in most aircraft, which reduces installation time and cost. In this Newsmakers episode of the Aviation News Talk podcast, we interview Garmin software engineer Joe Gepner, who helped design the G5.

The Garmin G5 is a direct replacement for a round-gauge attitude indicator, and it was originally introduced for experimental and LSA aircraft in July 2016. Pricing of that version starts at $1199. Later, Garmin introduced a second page in the G5 that displays a HSI, so that it can also be used as a direct replacement for a DG, heading indicator, or HSI. If a pilot has two of these instruments in an aircraft and the one displaying the attitude indicator fails, the G5 displaying an HSI can be switched in flight to display the attitude indicator.

In May 2017, Garmin announced a version of the G5 Electronic Flight Instrument that can be used to retrofit attitude indicators and DG/heading indicators in over 600 models of the most common certificated aircraft. That makes it easy for Cessna, Piper, Beechcraft and other aircraft owners to easily retrofit their aircraft with a low cost glass panel display. A single Garmin G5 for certificated aircraft sells for about $2500, and includes an installation kit, magnetometer and 4-hour backup battery.

When configured as a attitude indicator replacement, the Garmin G5 looks like a miniature version of a Garmin G1000 PFD (primary flight display). Like the G1000, it displays the six primary flight instruments: airspeed, altitude, vertical speed, an attitude indicator, HSI, and turn coordinator with slip/skid indicator. It also displays ground speed and ground track from a built-in GPS.

The experimental/LSA version of the Garmin G5 also has a built-in autopilot. To use it, two optional servo motors need to be installed.

Listen to episode 14 of the Aviation News Talk podcast now to learn more about how owners can retrofit older aircraft with the Garmin G5 to add glass cockpit features and reliability to these planes.

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