Private Pilot Checkride VOR requirements

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by Matthew Rogers, Jul 5, 2018.

  1. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    Can anyone give me some experiences with the use of VORs during Private Pilot Checkrides? I own a 1/3 share in a 150f that has an Inop VOR unit. Plenty of people at my club have weighed in on whether I will need to get it fixed or not to do my checkride, but most of them got their licenses about 40 years ago, so they may be a bit out of date.

    So in terms of training, do you think I will need to:
    1 - get it fixed
    2 - get a handheld with a VOR receiver and be allowed to use that for the checkride
    3 - neither because the VOR system is slowly going away and I will be using FlyQ and GPS regardless in the future

    My instructor is also older and does not know if the examiner will want to use it or not, so that is not much help right now. He has an IFR Cessna Cardinal that I can use to get some hours operating the VOR system, but I was thinking that having a handheld back up radio is not a bad thing since my old 150 only has one radio.
     
  2. drotto

    drotto Cleared for Takeoff

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    Three years ago my examiner wanted me to be able to track a VOR, identify a VOR, and be able to use a VOR to find your location on a map.

    I know VOR are somewhat going away, but it will be years before they are fully gone. Know how to use them. I can also tell you if you start doing IFR, it is a requirement to know how to use them.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
     
  3. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I dont know the exactt rules. What I think I know is the Examiner could ask you to use it because it is there. I may be confusing this with Instrument checkride rules though. Another question is, how long has it been Inop? If you dont get something fixed in a certain time you are supposed to remove it from the plane. Next scheduled maintenance or something like that. Will the examiner care? I dunno. As an owner this will concern you.
     
  4. Steven Untet

    Steven Untet Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You have to be able to use installed and functioning equipment. If you take it out you won’t be tested on it.


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  5. labbadabba

    labbadabba Pattern Altitude

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    I don't think there's any requirement for the checkride itself as it's not required equipment for VFR aircraft. If it's properly labeled INOP he can quiz you on how it works and why it's INOP but he can't fail you for not having a VOR. Plenty of pilots still doing their checkrides in aircraft that are "IFR" only (I fly roads).
     
  6. iamtheari

    iamtheari Administrator Management Council Member

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    Here's my thought. You have to be able to pass the oral test about how to use VOR equipment. And if you don't have VOR receiving equipment in the plane, you might want to be extra sharp on your navigation skills without it because they might test you harder on how you plan to find your way without any help from the ground. But you were already sharp on pilotage and dead reckoning already, right? :)
     
  7. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Final Approach

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    He can also quiz you on the procedures you used to defer it under 91.213.
     
  8. Kansas Flyer

    Kansas Flyer Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I took my checkride in a Cherokee that had had the VOR replaced by a 2nd Com radio when the VOR went TU. You don't have to have one for your checkride.
     
  9. steingar

    steingar Taxi to Parking

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    I didn't have a functioning VOR for a decade. I'm going to have to relearn how to use the blasted things.
     
  10. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    Great to know. So I think I will fly over to a shop and have them check it out. If they can fix it easily, I will get it fixed. If not, then probably get it taken out as this plane will never be IFR certified so I will need to find another one to train for IFR if I decide to do that anyway. Looked up prices and they are not too bad if the indicator is the only bad part. Not sure how much labor would be, though. I fly a 150 to keep it inexpensive so I am not thrilled about the concept of AMU.
     
  11. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    I am slowly going through all the squawks that the other owner let slowly go bad over the years. Some shimmy repair on the nose wheel, steering boots, lower rudder fairing cracked, this VOR, gas tank sump valves, left tank gas gauge, new shoulder harnesses to upgrade from just belts. Things that a single owner might just let go for a while, but I want to learn to fly and not worry about little things going wrong.

    Luckily the engine is low hours at ~600. Hopefully, I don't poke too far into the airframe and find anything major that I don't like. Its got full logs, but you never know.
     
  12. bobmrg

    bobmrg En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Just for fun, let's read what the Airman Certification Standard calls for. That determines what the examiner will look for. I would think that "intercepting radials" would be tough without an operative VOR. Also, use of VOR to determine position....

    Your "older" instructor does not get a free pass for not knowing where to look for this basic information. He should also know that handheld devices are not acceptable.

    Bob
     
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  13. Wheels

    Wheels Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Just last year the FAA made it clear that onboard (handheld) devices were acceptable.

    https://www.faa.gov/other_visit/avi...afety/info/all_infos/media/2017/InFO17003.pdf


    Maybe the “older” instructor is more up to date on current FAA policy than some POA members.
     
  14. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    So does that mean that you are not allowed to take a checkride in an aircraft that is not equipped with a VOR, Bob? Others here have reported that their checkride aircraft was not equipped with one. If you own an older aircraft without an electrical system, no VOR is possible. I almost purchased a Taylorcraft or Champ, both of which would not have been able to have a VOR. That would have meant that I would have to rent a different and get checked out in a different aircraft to take the exam? Is that a new requirement in the ACS that was not present in the past? Or could it still be subject to the individual desires of a DPE?

    I am not trying to get out of learning the VOR system, but it is certainly true that there are many new ways of navigating that are cheaper, ?better?, and more accessible, if not able to be installed as certified systems. Talking Stratux ADSB, GPS, and EFBs. Just trying to figure out what I need to do to my airplane for the checkride without spending money I don't have to.
     
  15. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    Seems to me that the telephone and asking the DPE a direct question might help in this instance.

    And as Bob mentioned... the CFI should be very familiar with the contents of the ACS.
     
  16. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    Well, my CFI has not had a student for a while. He just took his CFI refresher course this spring, so he is still going through all the new changes it seems. I had a hell of a time finding instruction here in Southern NY (Hudson Valley). Had 12 people bail or say no before I found a single instructor. This was over the course of 8 months and with asking for recommendations, cold calling people at are listed as having a CFI rating, and anything I could do. All the young guys left for the airlines and all the older ones were not interested. Even one of the schools near me only has a single instructor for their entire Part 141 program.

    So yes, I guess I will have to narrow down and find a DPE and ask directly. It seems to be like a local building department - the inspector looking at the work has a wide responsibility to ask for (or not ask for) specific requirements. Some inspectors just walk in and look for 30 seconds then walk back out. Others will take a wall apart just to see if the inside is built correctly.

    I know that reading the FAA documents is the ultimate repository of answers, but I only ask questions where I have heard multiple differing opinions as to what the information in the documents really means and how it applies in the real world.
     
  17. Hippike

    Hippike Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I took my CR in April of this year. My 172 had an operational VOR and the DPE did ask me during the flight to tune/identify a VOR. I got to the point of tuning, identifying the VOR but when the he asked me what radial I am on, I drew blanks. He pressed a button on the radio that displayed the current radial we were flying on. (always learning something new:)
    Once you have a DPE you are going to use, just ask him.
    I did ask mine about using my iPad during the CR, he said it's OK to use it, but he insisted that for my xc planning, I must do everything on paper the old fashion way, he would not accept electronic nav log.
     
  18. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    Yeah, I just did a dual XC and was not allowed to use my EFB, but had it in the plane in case we had an actual emergency and it could be of use. Navigating a straight course in an area next to the Hudson River is not very difficult. Next Dual XC I will plan a complicated one with a few different airports going into PA and not along any major rivers. But I guess the hardest areas would be the plains where everything looks the same, just a bunch of square farms stretching for as far as you can see.
     
  19. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    It's known as IFRRR

    I Follow Rivers, Roads, and Rail

    This is where good pilotage skills come into play. Using the various tools available, especially Google Maps and Earth, find easy to spot landmarks that are "relatively" close to each other. Maybe 10 to minutes apart.

    Then on your written flight plan, have the details of which heading, distance, and time between each.

    And if your VOR receiver was good to go, it is a simple task to use crossing radials as a way to double check you are where you think you are. And if you aren't determine where you actually is... umm... are. (should be?)
     
  20. bobmrg

    bobmrg En-Route PoA Supporter

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  21. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    Your DPE will probably remind you that an “INOP” sticker isn’t a proper “disabling” of the device and might also mention that something “INOP” may have to be repaired or removed before the next annual can be signed off.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2018
  22. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Cleared for Takeoff

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    Yes, these are the things that I am taking care of an a new owner. I will have to ask the other owner that sold me my share how long the VOR has been broken. But I think the mechanic “overlooked” that during the annual Dec ‘17.
     
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  23. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Final Approach

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    Interestingly, for an airplane authorized to use the MMEL for Part 91 operations, the mechanic merely needs to tell the owner so the owner can make the decision to continue deferring or not...at least according to the Advisory Circular and/or MMEL preamble.
     
  24. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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  25. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    The funny part about that document is that it references the PTS approval for the old Type I and II EFBs, saying the guidance in the ACS was “inconsistent” with the PTS...

    Okay follow along here now...

    The PTS referenced the old EFB definitions...

    Which was deprecated and replaced with AC 120-76D...

    Which now has Type A and Type B applications where Type B are things “critical to flight” like navigation...

    And under the Type B, the only one that allows a moving map...

    It says...

    “Electronic aeronautical charts (e.g., arrival, departure, en route, area, approach, and airport charts) which may be static/pre-composed (raster), or dynamic/data-driven (vector).
    Note: A depiction of EFB own-ship may be included on this EFB application if the aircraft has a navigation moving map display (navigation display) providing concurrent display of the active flight plan, aircraft position, and aircraft trajectory (for example, heading is a heading is selected). The EFB application may display additional, unique data elements, such as airspace boundaries, but must have sufficient common data to allow the flightcrew member to resolve discrepancies.”

    In other words, read literally, unless the aircraft (with no electrical system) they’re trying to help out in the first INFOs document you linked to...

    Has a moving map in the panel...

    You’re not supposed to show the location of your OwnShip on the screen of the PED or EFB!


    .....


    LOL. They don’t have a damned clue what the right or left hands are doing over there when they write this stuff.

    https://www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/media/Advisory_Circular/AC_120-76D.pdf

    It’s amazing really.
     
  26. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    Maybe @midlifeflyer can parse soemehting out of that AC above that makes it compatible with the INFOs Clip posted.

    Best I can squeak out is maybe you can squeak by because a typical iPad app like ForeFlight or Garmin Pilot isn’t an EFB under the AC, it’s a PED.

    But I see nothing in the AC that allows a PED to be primary nav without the same capabilities in the panel.

    Which makes the INFOs letter, hilarious.

    “We fixed airplanes with no electrical system checkrides, by referencing a standard that we already got rid of and replaced with a standard that says portable devices have to do the same things the panel can do, or you turn the OwnShip off on them.”

    That’s my reading of it. Stupid. Really stupid.
     
  27. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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    That’s ok, I can’t see where they changed the ACS in June 2018 to affect the change.
     
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  28. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    Hahaha an excellent point.
     
  29. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Beats me. I don't bother trying to make an AC which doesn't apply to Part 91 ops compatible with an INFO dealing with a private checkride.
     
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  30. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    LOL. Right?

    It’s the only path left after they referenced the original spec in the INFO. That reference wasn’t even appropriate back when they wrote it, because saying a Private checkride would have an “EFB” instead of a “PED” was flat wrong in the INFO anyway.

    I think whoever wrote the INFO pulled that “we are matching the ACS to the PTS guidance” straight out of somewhere dark and warm.

    Which would make sense that they never updated the ACS with the INFO, in the recent major update. :)

    Can an INFO be rescinded? I’ve never seen that.

    But I do have to laugh. Forgot all about INFOs and yet ANOTHER unindexed, unorganized pile of crap one must hope one finds in the FAA website these days to go along with the unorganized piles of crap that ACs and Chief Counsel letters already are.

    If someone had a year to spend on it, it would be entertaining to write a doc that links all of the various piles of unorganized crap back to the FARs they change or modify. It would be one hell of a big document and you’d never have a chance in hell of keeping it updated.

    Just documenting the inconsistencies of wording after you figured out which ones modify the others would be a lifetime of work.

    All we can do is assume a number of things. That INFO seems to indicate they want people to be able to take checkrides in aircraft without electrical systems, and maybe use iPads somehow. That they reference their own document that says NOT to do that unless the panel can do it first and for a completely different Part under the regs, is just hilarious.

    They really can’t keep their mountains of documents straight anymore. Even the INFO author didn’t pay attention to what they were referencing and that it never applied even under the PTS. :)