Instrument checkride


Well-Known Member
It was HOTTER than anything this AM in that Archer, but we got it knocked out and it went extremely well. Details are as follows... ride was scheduled for 8am. DE arrived right on schedule, and we started into the oral. Of course first was the usual "am I qualified/is the plane legal to fly" stuff, then we started into the meat of the oral. My questions started off on systems (specifically, whiskey compass turning errors, req'd altimeter accuracy, what happens to the airspeed indicator/altimeter if you use the alt static source, is the VSI required?) - fairly simple in nature. We then looked at my flight planning - a day x/c MKC to SUS, a night x/c SUS to SGF, and discussed alternate minimums, did we need an alternate today?, is there a preferred route for our flight?

Then we looked at the enroute and he asked me what certain things meant. Nailed all of them except one that he said "no one has gotten yet": why do some of the airways coming off of VORs have degree signs after the radial and some don't? (very few of them do) Reason is, in certain instances numbers can look wrong if read upside down. Ex: if you read "110" upside down it can look like 011.

Looked @ an approach chart for TOP so he could ask me how to fly a DME arc. Now my plane doesn't have DME - luckily I've flown a DME arc in a 172SP earlier in my training and could explain it thoroughly. He was happy, and on that note said "well Sarah, you got a 97 on your written, and your knowledge is exceptional on what I've asked you, so let's just stop there and take a 10 minute break - get your approach plates out for the approaches we're going to fly, look at them a few minutes, and then let's go fly!" It lasted barely 30 minutes!

That done, on to the plane. After we had the A&P fix one of the headset jacks on the passenger side (the screw & washer on the front had come off) we were on our way. He watched about 25% of my preflight and then the chief pilot came out and started talking to him, so I did the rest of it on my own. Started up, got our taxi clearance and headed out making sure to do the IFR equipment checks.

Took off and flew direct to the OJC VOR. We entered the published hold for the VOR-A approach to IXD, and did two turns in the hold - the wind was not as advertised by FSS AT ALL, but luckily I noticed that immediately and the first turn still turned out really well. Flew around one more time then commenced the approach. I flew the best darn nonprecision approach I've ever flown, then circled to land on Rwy 17. Taxiied back for takeoff, spent a few minutes on the ground and set up the ILS 35 as he requested. That made it so easy - I'm used to having to do all this on the fly! Took off, flew southwest to 3000' then 2 unusual attitudes (a nose-high, fairly level one followed by a nose low in a sharp left bank), and a set of steep turns.

All went well so at that point we called up KC Approach and got vectors for the ILS 35 at IXD. Went absolutely great, got a tiny bit right of center and one dot above glideslope at the end but not bad. Over the outer marker, we heard a Mooney call inbound for the visual 17 - then a "hi Sarah" - it was my CFI! (he works for Garmin at IXD)

We went missed and then back to 3000' and partial panel time. He had me request 'no gyro' vectors from ATC in lieu of timed turns. Made my job easy! Got set up for the ILS 19 at MKC (flown as a localizer approach) and intercepted the inbound heading. Here's where I *might* have screwed up had I not been on my toes...He "failed" my # 1 nav just outside the outer marker. I noticed this, and just started flying the # 2 nav. started my descent and my timer, and then found myself accidentally/out of habit looking at # 1 again! I thought to myself "boy do I have THIS approach nailed" as the CDI was dead center then I saw the red flags and my heart jumped. DOH! I looked at Nav 2 and LUCKILY had wandered off juuuust over 2 dots. Got 'er whipped back on center, told the DE what I did (to which he laughed) and finished it up dead center, foggles off...great landing!

So on to Comm. Well, the time building part. Gonna have some fun for a few months getting these hours - become a pancake fly-in connoisseur and keep working on the instrument flying.

For the record, I finished in 41-something hours and all but about 3 hours of it was with my CFI. I started in early March.

At the end of it all, I was SO GLAD to get back on the ground. As much as I love to fly - that was ONE HOT FLIGHT.


Nice going...You will probably find this is the most useful rating that will get you most everywhere you want to go.
You Go, Girl!!!!

Awesome, awesome, awesome!!! Flying on instruments is awesome!!! Congrats....I'll have to have a few cold ones (, Diet Cokes...) for you!!