Monday, October 14, 2013

WAAS Training and Approaches

Red Eagle called today and 08Romeo is back together and ready to fly!

I guess it's all about timing as Mike B and I swapped text messages just prior to Red Eagle's call.  Mike had asked if I heard anything and after a few back and forth texts I was advising the plane is ready.  Mike wanted to fly as bad as I did so we planned for the reposition flight from ILG to N57. I texted Mike as I was ready to start 08Romeo. My pre-flight was complete and I had ordered fuel from Atlantic as soon as red eagle had called.

The 530 looked brand new! The unit discrepancy list when sent was for a WAAS upgrade and the screen replacement. The Garmin repair summary is as follows:
  • Upgraded unit to WAAS
  • Replaced Lens
  • Repaired Com board to correct issues found during testing (the radio never had a problem) 
  • Confirmed all hardware mods
  • Upgraded software
  • Aligned unit for optimum performance
  • SB 1317 Complied
I have a 90 day warranty so that's a plus.

08Romeo was back online and it felt great to hear her running, I almost didn't want to switch my Lightspeed Zulu's on. I taxied out to runway nine and departed on a left turn out to the north west and New Garden.  A short flight but I took some extra time to try and imprint some of the local surroundings so I can find this airport.

I crossed over midfield and entered a left down wind for runway six. Winds were 110 maybe 6 knots and I made a smooth landing.  I taxied all the way out because the last turn off is close to my hangar. I made a U-turn and shut down waiting on Mikes arrival.  I no sooner walked in the hangar and I heard a car pull up, Mike was here, very good timing.

Mike and I briefed the approach plans and the differences with WAAS.  I ran the simulator from Garmin and read through the manuals online so I had an idea of what I would see.

First up was Summit, KEVY and the GPS 17 approach. Since I didn't take pictures on this first flight I'll post some screen shots from the simulator.

When within 45° of the final approach course and the FAF is the TO waypoint, the 500W-series unit switches from terminal mode to approach mode. CDI scaling is tightened from 1.0 NM full scale deflection to either 0.3 NM or 2° full scale deflection whichever is less at the FAF. The change occurs over 2 NM and is completed by the FAF.

The typical LNAV approach now has vertical guidance. I will say the 'box' is very tight as you get close to the runway, much like the typical ILS,  but with WAAS and vertical guidance it really keeps you on a tighter target on the GPS approaches. Notice a few things, the new approach noted as LNAV+V and the Next DTK with heading and timing.  I went missed here and climbed out for a hold at WENDS and the GPS 35 approach.

As I approached WENDS the WAAS 530 plotted my entry and displayed it with a dashed line along with the new DTK heading and timing.

It was pretty cool to shoot the GPS 35 approach into EVY down to the LPV numbers at 320' vs the normal LNAV at 480'. For the locals who have shot that approach you know about the silo on final.  I had to ask Mike if we were clear the Silo now that we were closer...he laughed and confirmed.
Next up I wanted to shoot the ILS 1 into KILG. Mike called up Philly approach and we made our way to the runway via the initial fix, BLARE.  All in all a good night flying and some time with Mike learning the 530W.
This weekend will require a short hop to the beach to bring the motor home north. In a few weeks we will head to Boston to visit family.  After that it's an oil change and annual.

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