Panel Flying Impressions
How do I feel about EFIS systems and panel layouts now after
flying my RV-10?
Updated 12/3/2006 @ 177 flight
2/28/2009 @ 440+ flight hours
Note: On many of my travel flights
you can see the functionality of the Chelton Screens.
Initially I had trouble coming to terms with where to locate items for
both ergonomics, visibility, redundancy, and function. After
having flown behind my panel for a while now, I can give a report as to
how the layout and some systems are working. I will tell you that
it is very important to get yourself a full-size mockup built, before
you go and cut your panel. I did mine on cardboard with images
upsized to actual size taped on, so that I would have a good idea of
the view and reach required to all instruments, while sitting in my
semi-completed airplane. This helped tremendously and for me it
proved to be the difference between success and failure in a
layout. Here is a report
back on some of my previous concerns:
Should the EFIS screens be an
over/under arrangement, or side-by-side?
Initially I had leaned towards doing an over/under arrangement
on my main pilot-side EFIS screens. This was due to flying a
6-pack for years and being used to having the DG/HSI always directly
below the attitude indicator. I was definitely concerned that the
screens being side-by-side wasn't "standard" and that something would
be harder to do with it that way. What I have found is that I was
way off base by worrying. In reality, I'm very glad I went
side-by-side, and now I see that in the RV-10 it's probably
preferable. One of the larger reasons is that it's an easier
visual scan. All of my primary stuff is on the same horizontal
plane. Whereas I have viewed a dynon in glaring sunlight in the
past and had a hard time reading the screen from a cross-cabin angle, I
can actually see my Chelton screens in bright sunlight from any
Also, the RV-10 panel has a couple of things that help push you towards
side-by-side, and they make a difference in the outcome. First,
the panel is lower, far lower, than a Cessna panel...remember how high
some of those are? Well, if your panel is low, you don't want
your panel scan to be looking way DOWN all the time, so expanding to a
lowered panel so you can still do over/under gives you a real low
scan. If you stick with stock panel height, your scan stays a
little higher. Also, the sticks and stickgrips (I have infinity
but all would be the same) move far enough that you can and will hit
the panel with the stickgrips, and having a lowered panel will
introduce even more troubles with that arrangement. As it is, you
will want to cut your stick as low as possible with most grips, but if
you have a lower panel, you will need to cut and re-weld your sticks so
the grip is tipped back and won't hit the panel. So as it turned
out, I'm now sold on the side-by-side for the RV-10...and would do the
same thing if I did it over again. Also, initially,
the panel design is much simpler, as you just have to make room with
the 2 outer ribs, but you don't have to lower the panel and do any
other structural work. Working UNDER the panel is much easier,
too, as even the stock panel can be a pain to lay under...and trust me,
if you do any of your own panel wiring or maintenance of items, you'll
appreciate NOT having lowered your panel. Regarding the
visual scan on a panel, I find that even though it's not
a very low viewing angle in MY panel layout, it's still much more
un-natural viewing the lowest gauges than it is viewing the instruments
that are in the center or top half of the panel.
If you're flying an EFIS with all of the info on screen, I think
it'll be easier to glance sideways to view things than up and
down...especially if you use bifocals, which I do not, but it's
something to think about. I am glad I saved the hassles of
redesigning my panel to make it lower, and since I used the included
aluminum panel, I saved cost as well. I did get the chance to fly
an over/under system, and indeed I did find it both less comfortable to
look down lower to the scree, and to reach past the stick to the
screen, than when the screens are mounted more in line with a higher
viewing angle. In addition, as you get further below the
glareshield, you get more *glare* on the screens, and they wash out
Just more to think about. I also believe that having
the integration that I do, I made better use of space than my previous
panel designs that I had scrapped along the way. As for my backup
gauges, even though they are right below the EFIS, they're harder to
keep in your scan once you get using an EFIS, because they're low on
the panel and there's nothing else down there that requires attention.
I buy a 3-screen system or 2 screen system?
This one is without any doubt in my mind...A 3 screen system is
well worth the extra cost and effort. First of all, during my
initial flights and throughout all of my startup processes, I like(d)
having my engine instruments in the center screen. When you're
worried about temps going high, or oil pressures coming up, it's great
to have that right near you. Being able to flip my engine
instruments to the far screen and have a full-size map is also handy.
I don't think I'd be happy to compromise and do the
thing either, because you lose screen real-estate to various functions.
I have not found any reason to switch my main PFD screen from
anything other than PFD attitude mode, but I find I have tons of
flip modes on the other screens. Since I started taking
passengers, I've flown many people other than myself, and given many
pilots rides. Not including
2 of the kids, I have had EVERY one of them feel that it was very nice
for them to have the attitude display and associated information in
front of them when they were given the chance to take the stick.
My wife is also very happy to have the map screen on her side, as
she often enters
airport info, looks at the long-range weather on the datalink display,
logs data, and other various things during some flights. In
addition, being able to spend time as co-pilot with her own EFIS has
encouraged her and turned her from having no interest in becoming a
certified pilot, to actually considering doing it some day. In
short, I would not at all be as happy with my panel without
the flexibility that having the 3 screens gives, and I consider it of
core importance to my panel. Oh, one more benefit....on the
Chelton if you get terrain or obstruction warnings, my center screen
will automatically switch to the map mode and display and highlight the
threat. Very coon, and nice to have 3 screens for. Now,
what if you have some other EFIS? Well, still, consider all 3
modes being important simultaneously. Get an EFIS, another MFD
screen, and and EIS (Engine Information System) screen, and arrange
them so that all 3 are pilot-visible...perhaps the Engine monitor
should be the one furthest away or least perfectly arranged. Then
you will have all data on the screen at one time. Then, think
about what you have for equipment and try to stick with integrated
components. i.e. if you get one brand of EFIS, consider using
that same equipment for all screens. It will give you better
integration in that if the pilot changes waypoints or info, it will
flow to the co-pilot screen. Many people do things like put in 2
screens for the pilot and then stick a cheap Dynon on the other side of
the panel. Well, this is fine for backup, but it really serves you
poorly from an integration perspective if the unit is to have
navigation capabilities. You can still do that small cheap
Dynon...but buy a primary system you trust and get the most out of it
that you can from a functionality perspective...get 3 screens.
If you NEVER plan to have a co-pilot fly, it gets easier as you don't
have to worry so much about that integration, but it does become more
limiting if you may have someone fly from that other side.
Will I be able to fly behind an EFIS?
Again, here I had a huge relief. Not only does it take
almost zero time to be able to fly precisely holding airspeed and
altitude on the EFIS, despite the tape readout style, but I found that
all of the other miscellaneous information on the main screen is
equally as easy to follow. Adjusting to the EFIS is easy.
Adjusting back to steam gauges would not be quite as easy.
I find that
the whole concept of panel "scan" is changed. I can now fly with
less head-down time, because you're not looking as far for the
information when you need it. One real surprise with the EFIS was
that with it's precision, and the nice display of the Chelton, I find I
can hold altitude and fly better during steep turns, even when doing
the turns on instruments. Unusual attitude training during
Instrument training is a piece of cake too. One of my biggest
surprises is with the SVS (Synthetic Vision System) type display of the
Cheltons. Prior to flying this plane, I had almost always felt
"the leans", or vertigo when in any bumpy clouds. As it turns
out, having that larger EFIS screen with synthetic vision has basically
eliminated that feeling for me. I don't understand all the how's
and why's, but that spacial orientation is just so much better and I no
longer feel it. Flying gets easier in
no, no concerns at all about EFIS flying.
Should I go all-electric, or use a
I didn't change my opinion at all from the original. I see
no need for the extra weight and un-reliability, and construction
hassles gaind from adding a vacuum system and vacuum gauges. It's
hard on them in the cold weather, they wear out much sooner, the pumps
aren't reliable, and so on. If you have a well-designed
electrical system and use some sort of Aux battery (or instrumetns with
built-in battery backup, AND make sure you include backup instruments),
I see no reason for a Vacuum system. I
do, however, like my standard airspeed indicator and altimeter as
backup. I do think it's nice to consider the roung gauges as
backups, because they aren't electrically dependent. Perhaps a
TruTrak ADI makes a great stand-alone backup in the 2.25" size too,
because you can get it with internal GPS and battery backup, and it
reads ground track. Makes for a great backup instrument.
Is the E-Bus and Aux battery worth the hassle?
I really believe it is. My E-Bus design got out there on
the complex end when it came to wiring it, but when it comes to using
it, I love the way it works. The Aux battery is very handy for
both engine start time, and when you're testing or playing with your
instrumetns with the airplane off. It saves you from draining
your main battery. My startup procedure is like this:
BATT/ALT ON, Aux Batt ON, E-Bus Alternate Feed ACTIVE. Now
my EFIS and EIS, and my MFD with the Engine gauges all come to
life...and, since they're powered by the Aux battery, they don't reboot
when cranking the engine. Next, ignition source ALT. This
ensures that my lightspeed ignition is running on the Aux battery too,
to prevent starter kickback if the voltage drops too low during engine
cranking. Now, START ENGINE. Once it's running, it's E-BUS
Alternate feed OFF, Ignition source MAIN, Avionics Master ON.
That brings to life the rest of my avionics, and after turning
the NAV and STROBE lights on, I'm ready to roll. So, there's
benefit during engine start, there's benefit during instrument testing
or preflight time, and there's benefit if I lose my main alternator
and/or battery. I'm very happy with the system, and although it
took me 3 or 4 flights to get into the swing of which items are started
on and off, it's now automatic. Don't underestimate the
importance of a completely isolated battery for your EIS or some other
equipment during starting!!! In my above scenario, I can boot up
my EFIS screen and my WSI weather, and view approaching weather before
engine start. I can load flight plans into the systems, and I can
turn my system to the Engine Monitor screen during startup to verify
oil pressure is coming up, and things like that. If you do not
have an ISOLATED Aux battery, you risk corruption and damage from
rebooting systems at bad times, and you will with many components or
EFIS's, cause it to reboot. This will also delay you on the
ground as most EFIS's that have reliability checking built in will need
to go through a self-test and calibration procedure prior to
moving. If you have an isolated Aux battery to run these systems
on, you can fire them up and get them working, crank the engine, and
then once it's running you have very little you need to wait for before
you can taxi.
Should I have a standby alternator?
I still think it's a good idea. I'm very happy with my
Aux. Battery setup, so the motivation is far less to add a standby
alternator, and I probably wouldn't if my only choice was the expensive
B&C system (I don't feel the SD-8 is large enough to handle the
task). But, if Plane-Power comes out with theirs and it is
reasonably small and works well, and I can add it without too much
effort, I'll be adding that to the plane later. In my particular
situation though, the value is perhaps questionable. My main
battery is the Odyssey PC925 to give better cranking power, but that
also provides a longer runtime if the alternator dies.
Additionally, once I'm on my "backup" system if the main battery needs
to be shut off, I have about an hour of time with my primary gauges (my
main EFIS and nav equipment), to get on the ground. Well, the
RV-10 is a fast plane, and I just feel that I have such good runtime
with the systems I have that I should be able to go directly to an
airport, fly an approach, and get it down well within an hour. A
standby would let you stretch that time out, but SHOULD you? If
you have a failure that is bad enough to take out your alternator and
primary battery, you should probably be on the ground a.s.a.p. My
Aux battery will allow me to do that. Continuing the flight with
a known bad alternator is a ridiculous idea in IFR conditions, and
perhaps not a totally wise idea any any conditions. Just buy
quality parts up front and you have much less to worry about.
Should I use an integrated
engine monitor, or a separate one?
To me, this is another no-brainer. If you use the Chelton,
buy one of the integratable EIS systems. You'll absolutely be
glad you have 3 screens and can display your EIS data on it. If
you use the GRT, get GRT's EIS too for the same reasons. The AFS
engine monitor and Electronics International MVP-50 monitors are both
fantastic, and are some of the most feature filled available. All
of these make a great EIS to feed into the Chelton for engine
data. If you have Cheltons, consider using 3 screens and you can
save lots of money on the EIS and buy the one from Grand Rapids
Technology...or, you can spend more and get one of the other more
"pretty" ones. In the case of the AFS, you can get it as an
EFIS/EIS, which would give some system redundancy, but it would never
be as integrated from a functionality perspective, so for the AFS you
may consider going with the "mini" version, and still adding another
main EFIS screen of the same brand as the pilot side, for the
co-pilot. So there are 3
options to feed the Chelton engine data. The GRT is the absolute lowest
price point and I find it works great. The MVP-50 is the highest,
but it works today and works well. The ACS would come in the
middle somewhere and be nice too. That said, I'm really not
much with the GRT
EIS, and it was a lot less money. It just lacks features like
flap/trim position indication, but otherwise provides all the other
Should I use round gauges or a
2nd EFIS as backup?
Here it's a bit of personal preference. I think either
would be fine. I'm not one to trust the Dynon, only for the
reason that it requires your pitot/static system to be working and
connected or your attitude information isn't accurate. Other than
that, a Dynon may make a good backup system. In my panel, I think
I spent less and am happy with the round gauges that don't rely on
anything. I've used the TruTrak Turn-N-Bank (which was great),
and am now using the TruTrak 2.25" ADI. Both are good. I'd
be comfortable with just the TNB, and it's much easier to mount and
find space for, but the ADI gives additional redundancy options with
GPS and battery backup. If you
hear anything negative about the ADI, and how it will roll level if you
hold it in a bank long enough, rest assured that it functions different
on a bench than it will in the plane when it has all of the G-loadings
present. The ADI does a pretty good job providing you with the
flight info you need.
What are good locations for
I think that lower switch panel is great for most of the
switches. I like the layout that I have in general, with my
masters and keyswitch an E-Bus switches all up on the panel, but all
the other stuff on the lower panel. It will also make it easier
to add and change future switches around if you put them on the lower
panel, and especially if you add an additional strip of 1.5" x .063
aluminum to that switch panel. It acts as a cover that can be
easily pulled and re-drilled or re-labeled as needed, and it makes your
whole panel flush from top to bottom. Don't underestimate this,
as later in life you may find things you want to add or change, and
having an easily replaceable switch panel can be a great help.
Should I use breakers or fuses?
I am very happy with what I have. My theory is, if it's
something that you may want to pull in flight, use a breaker.
Things like Autopilots, Trim, Flaps...stuff like that you don't
want to have running uncontrolled. It's also nice to be able to
pull power on your main avionics sometimes. But, for lighting,
and other accessories, like my WSI weather, entertainment power,
encoder, and that sort of thing, I'm happy to have that on a fuse. If
sized properly it should never blow unless there's a real problem, and
if there's a real problem, you don't want to reset a breaker anyway.
To me, a breaker is more of a rarely-used switch. One important note: If you have ANY
items that control flight surfaces or are critical to flight, you want
them on a breaker. This means TRIM, FLAPS, Ignition System (if
you use an EI like I do), and things of that nature.
Should I buy an AOA gauge?
I don't have any disagreement that AOA instruments are nice and
can improve safety. That said, if they were very cheap I'd put
one in, but with what I have, I don't see a lot of point. My
Chelton calculates AOA to about 2-3mph accuracy, and it already voice
warns me about stall, terrain, and such. Having an AOA also
barking at me doesn't do much added good, and I haven't thus far found
any reason to add it...in this plane or all that I've flown.
Again though, I think AOA is a good thing and I don't disagree
with having it as long as the cost doesn't prevent you from buying
something else that might be more useful. To date, I find that
I'm just happy I didn't spend the extra money on it. For
aerobatic aircraft who are flying "on the edge" all the time, an AOA
may be more important, but if you can fly and approach to land and hold
airspeeds without stalling, there really isn't a lot of benefit in a
cross-country cruiser like the RV-10.
How many AMPS does she draw?
I've only looked hard at this one time, but it looks like I'm
drawing about 28 amps without landing lights and maybe 34 or so with
them. (I have dual HID's that are around 3A each) This is
during daylight, so no interior or panel lighting turned on. I'll
try to update the numbers later.
Should I get a GNS480, 430/530,
or SL-30/40 for my COM2?
This is a tough question. I still think that if you're
going to add an expensive Nav/Com/GPS, you should consider the
GNS480. But, since they're hard to get now, the 430W is an
acceptable substitute. The GNS480 is the most capable system for
IFR use, once you learn how to use it, and the 430W is more of a very
enhanced VFR GPS with approach capability, to many people. I'm
glad I have the 480, but I don't know what's the "best"
way. The remote-mount Freeflight or Chelton WAAS GPS would take
up less panel
space, and actually integrate better and add some additional
functionality to the Chelton, but the on-screen display and traffic on
the GNS480 is nice and it serves as a total stand-alone backup and
makes you legal for any approach too. I think if you have a
Chelton system, it gets to be a tough choice as to what's a better way
to go. I've used my GNS480 for
running side-by-side flight plans, for grabbing my ATIS/AWOS, and
viewing traffic, but rarely flown an approach on it yet.
The Chelton is so much easier to fly approaches with and the
flight planning is so much better, than the ANY of the others, they get
background. This is why using one of the remote-mount WAAS GPS's
is attractive, because you can now have Gamma 3 WAAS LPV capability
totally integrated with the Chelton system, whereas done any other way,
you really should be loading the approach TOO on the other navigator,
even if you fly it on the Chelton. With Cheltons, a person can
get a hugely capable
system with just an SL-30 and SL-40 combo, if you add the freeflight or
Chelton GPS. I did fly an ILS and
compare the needles between the GNS480's CDI and the SL-30's
Chelton-displayed CDI....both were dead on accurate, and in 440+ hours,
I've never had a hiccup out of the built-in GPS on my Chelton's AHRS.
Should I use Push-Pull or
I'm a quadrant fan. It looks nice, wasn't hard to install, and
my personal opinion is that I can get the Manifold pressure and RPM
tuned in more closely using the quadrant than the vernier push-pulls.
(The standard throttle cable isn't vernier) I found my
5 hours in N220RV to be frustrating with the throttle/prop controls.
It could have been the EIS in that plane had processing lag,
because my EIS is very quick to respond to changes in RPM and MP, but I
still feel the sensitivity of that well made quadrant is better.
Also, with a longer lever moving a shorter cable throw, it makes
sense that it wouldn't be too bad. I've not had to engage the
friction lock yet either. Other people have noted that vernier
throttle cables are not allowed in formation flying, and that a
quadrant makes it easier to see the exact control position. There
will still be some who prefer push-pulls, and I say "great, go with
it", but don't expect it to be smoother, or even as smooth, as the
quadrant. I don't know if it's the cables or quadrant, but this
one works exceptionally better than others I've used.
Should I get an external CDI
for my NAV2?
Well, if you get the GNS480, you may as well. It's not
that much extra money and it gives you a fully certified GPS system
capable of flying a WAAS approach and an ILS. Will you get much use out
of it? Probably not, if you have a Chelton system. I do
think it's a nice thing to have on NAV2 though. Even if you have
a Nav 2, it can be a nice addition for backup purposes. It's just
that with today's EFIS's, it will likely be just that...a backup.
Do I need a Flap Position Indicator on the panel? How about Trim?
And rudder trim?
Flaps, No. There is no trouble on the -10 viewing the
flaps and telling which flap setting you're on. You can certainly
put one in, but with only 2 notches of flaps plus relflex position
available, it doesn't make too much sense to worry about it. If
you have an EFIS that will display position, great. If not, I'm
not sure it's worth the effort. It's an easy over-shoulder check,
and you can definitly feel flap position in how the airplane feels as
they deploy. Trim, yes...don't
put in an electric trim without trim indicators....elevator and
aileron, or sure, and rudder optionally. I have not found trim
indication for rudder to be a necessary thing.
Boy that GRT EIS screen is
ugly, should I hide it, or panel mount it?
I thought it was ugly too. Turns out it's kind of handy to
have on the panel, and it has tons of info on it. Just buy the
nice trim plane from SteinAir
and you'll be happy and be over it soon psychologically. It is
very readable from a distance too, so it is actually nice to have.
Do you need Aileron trim, or
not? Where should I mount my switches? What about Ruder
Yes, Aileron Trim is worth it. The RV-10 exhibits quite a
bit of imbalance in aileron as loads and fuel supply change...more than
I thought it would, and more than my previous planes I've flown.
It has longer tanks that are less "deep" front to rear. I
didn't think I'd need it, but bought it just in case. My old
Beech didn't need it at all. The -10 will benefit from
Sure, you can fly with the autopilot and it won't matter as much,
but you may as well take some of the pressure off your AP servos too.
After 200+ hours, I
finally added rudder trim, but I'm kicking myself for not adding it
earlier. It is a very simple system, doesn't cost a lot to
install, and really makes those long X/C flights more
comfortable. I find that a trim block does work, but since
only works perfectly at one speed, I get too much correction on
descent, and too little in lower speed cruise. Add rudder trim
and pull your tail wires! As for switches, don't bother with a
panel mounted trim switch for anything but rudder. You'll want
the aileron trim and elevator trim on your stick grips. My panel switch
for elevator trim has been used ONCE....to test it.
functions should I put on my stick switches?
On my infinity sticks, I put a Coolie Hat with Aileron/Elevator
pushbutton screen swap for the center Chelton on the Left Stick, and
the Right Chelton on the Right stick (I do not have the remote switch
kit yet though, so it's not functional), I have the EFIS mute as the
pinky button. The Trigger is the PTT switch. The Thumb
button is the AP disconnect and Control Wheel Steering button.
The (on)-off-(on) momentary toggle flips the frequencies on COM1
when up and COM2 when down. Every one of these functions I find
useful, and I think will be very nice to have. The EFIS mute is
indespensible, as is the CWS/AP disconnect button. I'm not for
on the stick...not necessary, and possibly unsafe. I also have
many of the functions
(most just GROUND to activate) run through a panel switch that allows
me to disconnect a single combined ground on the co-pilot side that
lets me disable the co-pilot from running the trim, or frequency
flip-flops. Keeps the kids from messing with things accidentally.
Do I need a trim speed control system?
I really think this will be a necessary thing on the elevator
trim, but not even desierable on the aileron. I installed the "Safety Trim"
system after flying a long time without, and I'm trilled with that
added benefit. One time during the flyoff, I had a binder
on my lap, which rested on the trim switch just for a second.
the plane shot up in a climb and I had to quickly figure out that it
was the trim and re-trim it back. When you're in cruise, you have
to only very quickly and lightly tap the elevator trim, or you'll
overshoot. Try it yourself, but I think the elevator trim is so
powerful that it's over-sensitive to the point of being dangerous if
you accidently hold the button too long or bump it with a chart, or
binder like I did. I'll be adding it to the elevator. I
previously had ray-allen relays, but also had relay failure, so a while
later I got motivated and added Safety-Trim. At this point I
think it should be a standard item on all RV-10s. On my flights
to demo the RV-10 to other pilots, I've
demonstrated the elevator trim speed to most of them. On my most
recent demo flight however, the co-pilot tested it before I had a
chance to warn him, and he noted at 145Kts IAS that it was VERY
sensitive. You can get over 4000fpm of climb and descent, and
pull 2 or more G's, with just one full second of high-speed trim in
cruise. Safety trim fixes that. Also, I have a flap and
airspeed switch on the Safety trim, so taking the flaps out of Reflex,
OR flying below 100kts will put me to normal speed trim, so that is an
important benefit as well.
Is the GTX330 with Mode S TIS
worth it, or not? What about the Gov't getting rid of it?
All I can say is, that's a hell of a lot of cool traffic
functionality for not all that much of an increase in cost over a
regular transponder. Be aware that the phase out for TIS is
SCHEDULED for a 10-year phase-out. That's IF the Government keeps
the schedule. The people that pass up on Mode S for 5 years while
waiting for their ADS-B price to come down (currently about $8K), will
not know how much they're missing. I have also tested an ADS-B
system from NavWorx with my
Cheltons and it works great, so over the next year I will be
integrating that as well. This traffic stuff is VERY
cool and adds a good measure of safety. If we can just convince
the Feds to keep Mode-S we'll all be better off until ADS-B fills in
all over the country. I suppose like all
things, it'll have to be done in blood....enough traffic related deaths
and they'll refocus on preventing them with technology. Why does
it always have to be the hard way. So far by having traffic, it's
actually had a few occasions where it could have saved my bacon had
continued in the same direction. Configuration note: The
GTX330 feeds it's traffic data to the Chelton through an ARINC to
serial converter. You use ARINC #1 out from the GTX330, into the
converter, and then hook the other side of the converter (serial
in/out) to the Chelton's J1 connector. (COM5 TCAD) The
trick to getting it working is that in the limits editor, you need to
set COM23/24 to HIGH speed. Man, once I got that information and
the TIS displayed on my Cheltons, I can't imagine skipping traffic as
an option. It's one of the coolest things in the panel.
I don't think I'll ever want
to be without traffic again.
Is the Gretz Pitot any good?
Sure seems to be. I've now flowin in IFR conditions, right up to
freezing temps, but it seems
to work just fine. My airspeed is now really close, within 2kts
with the new Cleaveland static ports, so the pitot can't be that
inaccurate. It's nice having the
thermostatic control to keep the power draw down. Until someone
has a negative report, don't expect much news, but it does seem to work
How's that PMA8000 audio panel?
Man, if there is something that's nice to have in the plane, this is
it! It feeds me audio warnings from all my equipment, I have the
SPLIT-COM function where I can use one radio and the copilot uses the
other. The music input is phenomenal! I have a front and
rear input jack, and both are switched to allow the people in the front
seat to choose either jack as their audio source, the rear seat
passengers to choose either jack as their source. That means I
can listen to the video playing in the back seat, or my own music up
front. The Cellphone input is great too. I got paged while
on the runway and answered the call from the plane. The voice
quality is so nice that the called party doesn't even know you're in
the plane. I have the MUTE button the shuts off musing muting
when you talk on the front intercom...nice for singing along to the
songs. I have the AUX button programmed to turn off muting in the
rear so when we talk on the intercom the kids don't freak because they
can't hear the movie. This is one VERY functional piece of
equipment for under $2k.
The RV-10 Desperately needs sun visors. They are offered by Alex
at Aviation Tech
Products. He sells both the Rosen brand, and Blue Sky.
The Rosens cost more, are less easily maneuverable, and heavier, but
built better. The Blue-Sky's are very light, can be moved all
over the place, and much cheaper. They have a cheaper feel to
them, too, but they look fine and work well, and I think are easier to
What isn't as perfect as I should be?
- Keyswitch Location
- My keyswitch is a little too close by about 1/2" to the side
wall....the interior panel is kind of close to it.
- Breaker positions
- My right-most column of breakers is a little close by about
1/2-3/4" to the side wall, and the interior panel is close to that last
column of breakers.