Since I am finishing up the Instrument rating I was working partial panel holds and the first time through did it without the Garmin 530 relying solely on the compass and timed turns. After going through multiple discussions with Garmin users and reading all the forum chatter about the procedures, I was sent a link to a Garmin tips and tricks video by Jeff (33N). I learned some pretty cool stuff that really helped make the random non published hold much easier. Now I’m sure the old timers (hours not age) will say you can do it with the compass, turn indicator and timer and they are correct. However, why make your workload increase when you have the tools to make it happen smoother and easier. I am going to attempt to show you what I am talking about.
First, what is a hold you ask, ok, for the non-flyers here goes.
A holding pattern for IFR aircraft is usually a racetrack pattern based on a holding fix. This fix can be a radio beacon such as an NDB or VOR The fix is the start of the first turn of the racetrack pattern. Aircraft will fly towards the fix, and once there will enter a predefined racetrack pattern. A standard holding pattern uses right-hand turns and takes approximately 4 minutes to complete (one minute for each 180 degree turn, and two one-minute straight ahead sections).
In the absence of a radio beacon, the holding fix can be any fixed point in the air, and can be created using two crossing VOR radials, an intersection, or it can be at a specific distance from a VOR using DME. When DME is used, the inbound turn of the racetrack may be permanently defined by distance limits rather than in minutes. Appropriately equipped aircraft may be given GPS way points to be used to define the holding pattern, eliminating the need for ground-based navigational aids entirely
Here we are tooling along at 115kts and directed to proceed direct Smyrna (ENO), hold EAST, 090 radial, right turns. I already have my heading bugged and I am tracking to the VOR.
I can use the NAV2 to continue my track inbound TO the ENO VOR and NAV 1, the Garmin 530, to set up the hold. I push the OBS button and dial the in the 270 degree heading FROM the VOR which will be the inbound radial for my hold. Ok, I am still cross checking NAV 2 to make sure I’m on course to the VOR and I am working through the parallel entry in my mind to prep for the assigned hold and stay in the safety area (the hold race track).
With the help of paint shop I added the yellow dotted track so we can all “see” the hold. I added the light blue track to show my parallel entry, making a left turn outbound on the 090 degree radial for one minute. At the one minute mark I will make a left turn into the protected area and continue my turn to @ 240 degrees (a 30 degree cut) to intercept the 270 degree inbound radial. Once I intercept the 270 I would track to station passage then make the standard right turn and start the loop outbound, continuing this sequence of events to stay in the hold. Flying this hold also requires adjustments for wind and outbound times in order to make one minute inbound legs.
I’m not sure if this helped or not but I wanted to post what I learned form the video that shared some tips and tricks to make managing the workload a bit easier. You can view the video for the Garmin 430 at the following link.