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Old 01-30-2019, 12:40 PM
Paul 5r4 Paul 5r4 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Foley, Al
Posts: 632
Default Avoiding confusion

Recently I've redone my checklists. The plane was first flown in 2012 and as time has passed I found I had many little checklist tucked away in the nooks and crannies around the cockpit. This past week I spent some time consolidating them into three 5X11 inch laminated cards. All my information is now handily located on the front or back of these 3 cards.

Here's the point of this post. Once when I was ready to head home from the Petit Jean Fly-in in Arkansas, I had my primary GPS unit go belly up. The little bit of checking and messing with it I could do sitting there ready to takeoff didn't yield any good results. I had the back up nexus tablet up and running so no issues there and I blasted off for home. After taking off I began to think of how the loss of the device would affect my flight. My mind went blank!!! Here's what I did about it. While sitting at home drinking coffee with all the time I needed and no stress of flying a plane, I went through each device in the plane and tried to write a summary of each. What information I was getting from each device, (and what information I would lose in event of failure of that particular device), where the device got that information from and in the event of a failure exactly what to do about it.

I'm VFR only so this was pretty simple. The interesting thing was the human factor that come into play. This was no emergency at all but my mind in the middle of it could not organize the information. GPS/autopilot/wifi/bluetooth/dual antenna.... it all began to run together and created confusion in my head. Eventually I found the best things was to ignore it and use the nexus. I did get bummed about the thought of hand flying the 450 miles home.... (what did I ever do before I had an AP)??? I did figure out the autopilot would still work in heading and altitude modes.

By the way, it turns out the only thing wrong with my primary GPS device was some corrosion on one end of the fuse so that's why it wasn't blown and still didn't work when reinstalled.
Paul Gray
Foley, Alabama
N729PG..... 500+ hrs
RV 7A, Lycoming 0 320 D1A, Sensenich FP propeller
VAF supporter $$$
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