Wouldn’t it be great to observe an instrument flight and listen to pilot and controller interactions on a daily basis? You would become better at communicating and understanding the nuances of operating from various types of airports.
One way to get this experience is to watch Sporty’s IFR Communications video which brings you into the cockpit during a variety of instrument flights. Not only will you get to ride along and listen to the communications between the controller and the pilot you will also hear commentary by the experts at Sporty’s explaining the meaning of the last communication.
My favorite aspect of this video and the reason I recommend it to my students is that it gives examples of operating in and out of many different types of airports. If you primarily operate out of tower controlled airports and you are apprehensive about your next trip departing a non towered field you should watch this video.
The instructors at Sporty’s clearly explain methods of obtaining your IFR clearance at non towered airports. You then will get in the cockpit and follow along as the pilot obtains his clearance and then flies to his destination. During the process the instructor interjects explanations and standard procedures including organizing your cockpit and the recommended sequences of preparing for the flight.
This video includes three separate flights with various avionics panels. One flight is in a Cessna Skyhawk with a VOR and no GPS. For those who only use the VOR for backup this is a great opportunity to review position determination by cross radial. Furthermore, it will show you how to communicate with controllers who are accustomed to people flying with avionics allowing direct to navigation. When was the last time you needed vectors to join and airway or an intersection?
A second flight is in a G1000 equipped Skylane. The first part includes a review of the glass panel and pertinent features. I particularly enjoyed this because I am becoming acquainted with the G1000 and learned some good operating tips from this video.
The third flight is in a classic Piper Aztec into the busy New York Airspace using GPS and a multi function display, MFD. You will navigate busy airspace and see real life examples of multiple reroutes in flight with a landing at LaGuardia airport. If you ever wondered how to make a reservation at a busy metropolitan airport, this is the perfect primer.
The Video Includes:
- IFR Communications Review
- Emergency Lost Communications Review
- Obtaining your clearance at non towered airports
- How and when to cancel your IFR flight plan
- When it is a good idea to pick up your IFR clearance in the air and when you would not want to.
- Learn when you should cancel in the air before you land and when it can lead you into a trap.
- How to work with Air Traffic Control to get the outcomes you want.
I recommend Sporty’s IFR communications for all experience levels of instrument pilot. The DVD includes examples of operating in a wide range of flight environments. For those who rarely operate in one of these environments, such as the busy New York Airspace, this would be good review prior to planning your flight. The instructors are very good and the use of graphics and inflight video make this a pleasure to watch.
An added benefit to viewing this video is that you can earn FAA Wings credit online by taking an exam afterwards. Thus placing you one step closer to earning your wings and your flight review. I used this video for credit towards the Wings program after taking the online exam associated with the video.
At $31.95 this DVD is a bargain especially if you compare it to the cost of flight and ground instruction. I would highly recommend Sporty’s IFR Communications for all my instruments students and instrument rated clients.
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