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Thread: Gotta figure out how to improve my panel on a budget.

  1. #1
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Default Gotta figure out how to improve my panel on a budget.

    My panel needs some updating. The old EDO radio / Nav ( 6.2 pounds not counting the mounts) pretty much only receives so I am yanking that and the VOR head that goes with it. I have a Becker Radio en-route to go in the VOR hole. Plus I pulled the old Garmin 296 GPS because it was mounted where it could not be used very much.

    Then I need to figure out how to re-arrange the remaining items so maybe I can mount a moving map that is big enough to actually see.
    I would also love to yank the vacuum driven AI and HI. They are slowly dying anyway.
    I rented a hangar for the winter, but the hangar rent is equal to one instrument per month. Hangars in Homer are kinda high priced.

    Any ideas??
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    I am allergic to big expensive projects, so I have no useful input...

    ...but I am sure it will be awesome when you get it done!...
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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    I-Pad, Foreflight,, you get back up instruments, moving map and more.
    "I refuse to let the things I can't do stop me from doing the things I can"

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    What you have left in your panel is all good stuff, old or not. Curious about the new comm.? You guys need 2 radios up there?

    The iPad and Foreflite suggestion is a good one. This is from someone who has a very expensive MFD with synthetic vision. That stuff looks great in the brochures but in practicality, a waste for the kind of flying we do. If I had it to do again, Id get a good Icom, NAT intercom, an electronic artificial horizon, and the latest, biggest Garmin portable that would fit.

  5. #5

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    Im currently redoing my 180 panel. I took out the AI and HI, and the rest of the vacuum system. I already have an Ipad and Foreflight for work, so I'm putting in a mount and buying a Foreflight Sentry;

    https://www.amazon.com/Receiver-Weat...eflight+sentry

    I would get rid of the old radio tray, slam everything either up or down, and install an ipad mount in the existing hole.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    My panel needs some updating. The old EDO radio / Nav ( 6.2 pounds not counting the mounts) pretty much only receives so I am yanking that and the VOR head that goes with it. I have a Becker Radio en-route to go in the VOR hole. Plus I pulled the old Garmin 296 GPS because it was mounted where it could not be used very much.

    Then I need to figure out how to re-arrange the remaining items so maybe I can mount a moving map that is big enough to actually see.
    I would also love to yank the vacuum driven AI and HI. They are slowly dying anyway.
    I rented a hangar for the winter, but the hangar rent is equal to one instrument per month. Hangars in Homer are kinda high priced.

    Any ideas??

    Have you looked at the Garmin G5? I have a Maule, and my plan is to remove the current instruments and vacuum system and install a Garmin 43OW and two G5s, only because I want to be able to file IFR if needed, otherwise I would use something like youve chosen for a radio. I have a friend in Homer that has a G5 in her Citabria and shes really happy with it. Most everything I read about them is favorable.

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    GBflyer..... My vacuum stuff is starting to die. My old EDO nav/com would not send, just receive. and the VOR part of it had nothing to do with anything...
    SO I yanked the EDO radio and that alone weighs 6.2 pounds. And the little Garmin 296 was not mounted where it was usable so I pull that for the time being. Plus there was a loose piece of aluminum rattling around behind it...
    After I move around the other radio and VOR I will see how much room I have for a big screen map/gps. I was thinking about yanking the other nav/com and the other VOR display head as well. Then just going with a couple lightweight Becker radios. But I might have to leave a working VOR in place.... I need to research that...If I do not need one, I could ditch the VOR antenna and all the cables.
    I will put the GPS-MAp up high in the center of the panel, for those times when scud running through passes.

    AK sky cowboy:... I would love a garmin G5. The un-certified ones are EXACTLY the same unit as the certified version for $800 less. Anyway if I replace vacuum driven my gyro compass and artificial horizon, I think I would legally need two if I ever went IFR. One as a HI and one as a AI. The G5 really has more going on than I really need. Too bad nobody makes a certified one that is JUST a HORIZON. They make all sorts that are experimental only.

    I am not worried about the ADSB thing for myself right now... But I would want to use gear that would later be able to link up with ADSB gear..... That why I can retain some re-sale value for a future buyer. I am not sure how much longer I will be flying this plane.

    QUESTION???? Do all of the Apple maxi pad and mini pads use a blue tooth connection instead of cables? And what happens if your subscription runs out? Does it just stop working??
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    Quote Originally Posted by akskycowboy View Post
    Have you looked at the Garmin G5? I have a Maule, and my plan is to remove the current instruments and vacuum system and install a Garmin 43OW and two G5s, only because I want to be able to file IFR if needed, otherwise I would use something like youve chosen for a radio. I have a friend in Homer that has a G5 in her Citabria and shes really happy with it. Most everything I read about them is favorable.
    Where do you fly IFR up here? The only IFR I've done is Palmer to Homer in July. From what I can see that's about the only route with an MEA that a single engine normally aspirated aircraft can get to, but only a few months out of the year without icing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK Mauler View Post
    Where do you fly IFR up here? The only IFR I've done is Palmer to Homer in July. From what I can see that's about the only route with an MEA that a single engine normally aspirated aircraft can get to, but only a few months out of the year without icing.
    Granted theres limited opportunities here, but I want the option. Homer to Palmer, Western Alaska perhaps? Lower 48

  10. #10
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    Where do you fly IFR up here?
    I file IFR occasionally just to stay current. Then shoot some landings up in Kenai on the GS and back in Homer on the back-course localizer.
    Or occasionally file out of someplace like King Salmon then go up to 12K and do the VFR on top gig back to Homer or Kenai.
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    Please keep us posted on what you come up with. I'm eventually going to have to decide what to do with the panel on my long time Aeronca Sedan project. The gyro stuff never worked well when I was flying it but it was running a horizon, dg and t&b off of one venturi. I replaced the T&b with an electric one so hopefully that will help. If not I'll probably need a suction regulator, which is rather pricey. I agree that an EFIS horizon only would sure be nice. It would be great to eliminate the vacuum system and venturi entirely and have the same capability with lighter electronics. It could still be a year or three before the Sedan is flying so who knows what electronic magic is going to be available by then.
    Louis Knapp

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Well I went to the avionics place in Kenai today. I really like Scott as he always has good advice. And Garmin has a sale going.... BUT...

    A Garmin 796 gps is about $1,500. It has a 7. something inch screen about the same size as my Nexus 7 tablet. Then to do the ADS-B ,,IN and OUT so the contacts would come up on the map, I need to add a Garmin GTX 345 transponder,,,,,that is going to be another $4,500 to $,5000. So at least $ 6,000 for that...
    A couple G5s to replace the vacuum driven HI and AI around going to be around $4,300...
    Time to look at options.
    I need to change my password so my wife does not read this.
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    Member BluNosDav's Avatar
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    That sounds like a sweet electronics suite that you've got picked out. Go for it!
    Then add an AOA up on top of the dash, and tell your wife that Santa left it there.

    Fly Safe, Dave.
    "Luckily, enforcement reads these forums, and likely will peruse this one...Especially after a link of it is forwarded to them....." - AlaskaHippie.

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    Member akaviator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    GBflyer.....
    QUESTION???? Do all of the Apple maxi pad and mini pads use a blue tooth connection instead of cables? And what happens if your subscription runs out? Does it just stop working??
    All Bluetooth, Your GPS and map keeps working but your database is expired, like flying with expired charts.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Louis View Post
    Please keep us posted on what you come up with. I'm eventually going to have to decide what to do with the panel on my long time Aeronca Sedan project. The gyro stuff never worked well when I was flying it but it was running a horizon, dg and t&b off of one venturi. I replaced the T&b with an electric one so hopefully that will help. If not I'll probably need a suction regulator, which is rather pricey. I agree that an EFIS horizon only would sure be nice. It would be great to eliminate the vacuum system and venturi entirely and have the same capability with lighter electronics. It could still be a year or three before the Sedan is flying so who knows what electronic magic is going to be available by then.
    My dream panel on my Sedan is about naked. Airspeed, altimeter, and a G5. Comm radio. Im still up in the air about a nav unit, my iPad works well, Im kind of torn on cutting a hole in the panel for an Air gizmo mount and then the latest greatest turns the iPad into a loran.


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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    I found out my Google NEXUS 7 tablet is the same size as a Garmin 796 and a iPad mini. SO I am using that for a size comparison.
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  17. #17

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    If you are moving the transponder and radio to the bottom of the stack, set your gps off the panel so it clears the eyebrow and push it up as high as you can. Maybe even move the compass. This will allow you to use it and still keep some peripheral vision over the top.
    DENNY

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    Member algonquin's Avatar
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    Hi FP, don't know if you know but WingX gives instructors free subscriptions, just send a copy of your lic and they activate it.

  19. #19
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    I did not know that about WingX ... I have not used it or seen anyone else using it.

    Garmin says that there is no difference in the certified G5s and the non-certified. Just the paperwork. Certified = $2,149 and non certified is $1,199.
    AT one time a few folks managed to get them field approved because Garmin only had so many aircraft models listed on the stc. But the list has been growing.
    Of you do the certified GARMIN G5 DG / HSI - they jack up the price to $2,449 for some reason.
    And of course a C-180J is on the list... So there is no way FISDO will field approve. So $4,300 for two G5s. YIKES....

    RC Allen makes an electronic horizon that costs around $2,600 with less features... ( talk about marketing suicide) And a heading indicator for $2,600... wow.

    So far I have removed 14.62 pounds from the panel. And that leaves the transponder and audio panel in place. I have not started pulling any vacuum gear yet.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  20. #20
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    UPDATE:

    I now own two Garmin G-5s. The certified ones... One with a magnetometer which will act as a directional gyro and another to act as the horizon. NOW I can pull out the vacuum instruments and the vacuum gear.

    I also finally received the tiny 1.46 pound Becker radio.

    One problem is that after buying the two G5s I have no money left.

    My VSI could use a tune-up or replacing, and my turn and bank coordinator sounds like a coffee grinder.
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