Weekly tips, technique and training from IFR.

Coded Departure Routes
We Programmed the lowest route from FltPlan (not shown) into the G1000.

Coded Departure Routes

Wanna know a secret? Common routes often have canned alternate routing that you and ATC can use when the normal route won't work because of weather or traffic.

Pilots want ways to mitigate bad weather. The Coded Departure Route (CDR) is one of the least-known such tools in GA, although it’s been available since 2007. The AIM tells us, “CDRs provide air traffic control a rapid means to reroute departing aircraft when the filed route is constrained by either weather or congestion.” So, if you’d rather not wait, a CDR might be for you.

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To Brief or Not to Brief

An IFR flight has a lot of details we need to either review or share with others. Do you know when and how to conduct useful briefings?

[IMGCAP(1)] Question: What do pilots hate most of all? Answer: Check rides Question: Other than check rides, what do pilots hate most of all? Answer: FAA ramp checks Question: OK, other than check rides and ramp checks, what do pilots hate most of all? Answer: Thunders… Enough. What pilots hate, almost more than anything else are surprises. This might not be obvious, but think about it. If you know what’s coming, you’re prepared for it, but the unexpected requires…

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Who's on First?

Piston Jet

Good judgment and quick thinking are hallmarks of the aviation mentality. Both pilots and air traffic controllers are in the decision-making business. For controllers, every moment our headsets are plugged in, we’re making choices that affect the safety and flow of traffic in our airspace. Some choices are easier than others, such as not clearing anyone for takeoff when I’ve got a Gulfstream IV on short final.

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Failed vacuum system

How to use a Simulator

Any given flight lesson can be conducted in a sim the same way you would in the real airplane, right? Yes, but thats like using a hammer to put in a screw. Theres a better way.

When we started our sim-training business, we thought our strongest selling point would be logging cheaper time, such as the 20 hours of the instrument ticket’s required 40. We were wrong. The sim is a more efficient pilot training environment and shouldn’t be seen as a replacement for the airplane. Time logged is a nice bonus, but the real value is the learning efficiency and effectiveness. Once pilots and CFIs understand this, the training opportunities are vastly expanded.

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Flight Tool

Weather Planning

Thanks to the Internet, pilots have access to most of the same products that meteorologists use. We take a look at our favorites and show how to use them for a safer journey.

Preflight weather planning has long consisted of calling an FAA Flight Service Station. Years ago, you might have even visited one. But, using the Internet, you can now draw on the same resources that meteorologists use. While the 2000s brought weather data to the cockpit, we’re now getting some Internet tools to the cockpit via dedicated datalink. Although we can’t yet cheaply surf the web at cruise, we connect to the Internet at the FBO, on the ramp and in the plane on the ground, using phones and tablets with WiFi and cellular data.

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More Required Reports

There are 15 required reports for the IFR pilot. Last month we covered six of them. This month we continue the journey through the memory aid, MARVELOUS VFR 500.

Last month’s clinic began a detailed look at the reports we are required to give ATC or FSS during an IFR flight. Specifically, we began looking at the reports other than the position reports required by 14 CFR 91.183(a), which we’ll cover separately. The remaining reports come from three sources: 14 CFR 91.183 (paragraphs b and c), 14 CFR 91.187, and AIM 5-3-3.

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