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Misc. Ramblings


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The thread on Cold Weather Flying managed to drift pretty far afield, so I thought it best to start a thread to cover a few loose ends and observations.


1) Threads like that are why I enjoy CTFlier. Though I don’t own a CT, there’s a lot of food for thought, making it about my most popular aviation site. Thanks to all who contribute and the admins who keep it all going.


2) As history, when I was learning to fly in the mid-70’s, there was a bit of a transition going on. Airplanes had been supplied with “Owner’s Manuals” or the like, and there was little standardization in the manuals or the planes. Some were in knots, some were in mph. Some used IAS for Vspeeds, others used CAS. They were not organized in any consistent format. And some were quite thin, mere pamphlets.


That meant you could be flying the same plane, different years, and sometimes need to remember knots and sometime mph. It was kind of a mess.


At some point in the mid to late 70’s (I think), the FAA stepped in and made everyone standardize. From that point on, knots it was. The POH’s each had to be organized with the same Section format. A big help.


And the arcs and lines on the Airspeed Indicator would always be in IAS - no more having to consult a chart to know what indicated speed you could really put your flaps down if Vfe was in CAS, for instance. Made life a lot easier.


That’s why I fixated on the idea that arcs and lines on the ASI were always indicated airspeeds, and carried that forward to assume that Vne was always at the same indicated airspeed, which is not right. I’m still trying to wrap my head around that one, but its good brain exercise.


If there was a downside, the POH’s have grown to gargantuan proportions. I had a chance to ferry a friend’s Mooney M20E, and I happened to have a Cirrus manual with me:




It's not like the Mooney’s not a complicated plane - it has retractable gear, controllable prop, cowl flaps, autopilot, all that sort of stuff. And that little handbook really does give you all the essentials. And for the Cirrus, that manual is only one of many - daunting!


3) I got this diagram from Aerodynamics For Naval Aviators:




Its this sort of depiction of a flight envelope that helped reinforce my assumption that IAS defined Vne - note the horizontal axis.


Anyway, good to understand what this depicts, and what one for your plane would look like


4) And that book is available online as a .pdf. As are virtually all of the FAA publications. With a tablet (in my case an iPad), you can find them online, open the .pdf and then save into iBooks. Here’s what I have right now:




No doubt Android tablets can perform similar feats. Anyway, with the “books” free, why not have a complete library at your fingertips?

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I just also found and downloaded the "Pilot's Handbook Of Aeronautical Knowledge".


What a great source of information! Very well done for a gov't publication.


Especially as a CFI, I find it invaluable to have official sources to back up my assertions - or to set me straight once in a while if I've gotten something wrong!

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Its not so simple on my Nexus. I'm downloading calibre to convert from pdfs.


That seems to involve, downloading, converting to html, converting html to book and maybe getting another book reader.


For now I'm just storing on Google Drive and I have downloaded a free pdf viewer that isn't too bad but the pdf whole page format is not a cool as a book reader.

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Re your original post: here are the speeds that I see as adjustable:

  • Vne ( if flutter speed is unknown ) at high atltitude
  • Flutter speed at high altutide
  • Va adjusts with weight
  • Vso adjusts with weight
  • Vr increases with crosswind

I use the same IAS at altitude that I use at sea level for approach / landing

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  • 1 month later...

US Aviation Academy has a free iPad app that has a number of the FAA documents in its library section. A great single resource for many publications--FAA PTS, FAR AIM, FAA Handbooks, Air Safety Institute Publications. A nice gesture by them to make it open to all and not just their customers.

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