I use brand X sunglasses or cheesy flip ups when I wear my glasses...Make sure their comfortable, I've found that a lens that doesn't darken the image too much is best. If it's a black lens then the green earth looks brown/black and any plane below you looks greyish...My suggestion to new guys is that they hold off on buying those big ticket items that they like to push in the FSI bookstore. A friend of mine entered FSI with me and by the end he was regretting that he bought a GPS, the expensive Dave Clarks, the embroidered flight bag...Keep it simple and comfortable. Also those really big "flight desks" seem to cause a mess, I've found a simple clip board works well (Rod Machado's idea). Have fun guys, you'll love it!
I would recommend any sunglasses that make you look cool. After all, even if a pilot can't fly well, at least he can look
good doing it. Usually thats the pricier stuff...the ray bans, the oakleys, you know, whatever. But, some people
can also get away with looking cool in cheaper stuff (not me, though). I would stay away from the extremely cheap stuff, though,
because usually not only are they not cool looking, but, the optics are warped at can screw up our precious pilot
eyesight. Tack on they aren't UV protected, and you are asking for bad eyes down the road. Not good for us. As far as
headphones, well, again cool is better. The best looking ones are also the most durable cause they usually cost more. Just like anything,
like going to a crappola flight school, you pay for crap, you get crap. There are obviously exceptions but you get the jist. Oh-and a GPS IS unneccesary. Rely
on your mad VFR flying skillz, and it will pay dividends. It will make you a better pilot.
"I would recommend any sunglasses that make you look cool. After all, even if a pilot can't fly well, at least he can look
good doing it." Well said Tres Verde! I actually did get some serious sunglass advice from the "expert" behind the counter at a local sunglass store. She recommended against anything polarized for two reasons. One, she claims that the cockpit windows of advanced modern a/c are already polarized, & two that with polarized sunglasses it make make it difficult to see the instruments in a "glass cockpit." I don't know if she is full of it or not, but she did talk me out of buying a more expensive pair of polarized shades for whatever that's worth.
As far as headsets go, I am partial to my David Clarks, with one exception. I would not buy the electronic noise canceling again. I don't think it makes all that much difference to begin with (especially for the cost), & I had to send my set back to the factory for repair after the batteries corroded in the case. To their credit, the repair was free, but I was stuck flying for a couple of weeks with a cheap pair of loaners from the Pilot Shop (I think they were SoftComms). Remember when you go to buy stuff like this, it only costs a lot more to go first class!
Yeah, back to the hand-held GPS...DON'T GET ONE!!! When you're in Step 2 the idea is to learn VOR navigation, Pilotage and Dead reckoning...I can't count the amount of times I had to make decisions based on what I was seeing out the window and my calculations...With a GPS, even if you say you'll only use it for emergencies you end up short changing yourself because it's those "emergency" situations where you're not sure of things when you have to make a decision, and that's when you become a better pilot. Not just looking at your GPS and saying, Ok...Fly heading 240 to Naples...Power set, mixture leaned, everything ok...40 minutes to go...
GPS is going to be around a lot longer than VOR is. Learn VOR, but why not make it easy on yourself. My .02. On the glasses, I'm an Oakley man myself. Better to look good than ......... anything else. /ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif
No doubt GPS is going to be around longer than VOR, but VORs will be around for next couple of years....Why not make it easy on yourself by using a handheld GPS? Anybody can fly with a handheld GPS, ANYONE, but it takes skill to navigate with just a single Nav/Com. It's kinda like learning to do math....We learn to do everything by hand before getting to use a calculator.
As far as the polarized glasses goes...the woman behind the counter was right. Polarized glasses are legal, but the FAA does not reccomend them. The glass cocpit panels have polarized glass to reduce glare from the sun and lights. If you wear polarized glasses, it may be difficult to see the display. I tried it in my car with my handheld GPS, and it was more difficult to see. The display seemed dark. So now i have a pair of $140 Ray Bans that I shouldn't use. But I prolly will anyway.
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but it takes skill to navigate with just a single Nav/Com
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My grandma can get her position off a VOR /ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif . Figuring out where you are based on landmarks, rivers, and intersections is what separates the men from the boys. That and puberty.
Ouch, Man, that was rough. /ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif..you crack me up. /ubbthreads/images/icons/laugh.gif
But seriously, TG123 made an excellent point, I never realized that poor quality sunglasses can affect your eye sight in the long run. And on the subject of headsets, I take it that David Clarks is the popular choice.
In all seriousness, I would consider sunglasses to be fairly important for pilots. Especially in the long run. I am not
saying you need them polarized, but they should be UV protected. The biggest thing though is that you cannot be
up there squinting without sunglasses. You can't see traffic, if its any bit hazy you won't be able to see a thing
without them cause the glare will be intense. I even use mine in the clouds cause it can get bright in there as well--it
cuts down on eye strain and its easier to see the instruments. So heres what i say....if you can take care of them, invest in a nice pair. Get a cat string for around
your neck and never take it off until you get home, then you won't lose them. Our eyes our one of the things we
really need so take care of them. If you lose your sunglasses all the time, think about a cheaper pair, but, have them. Again,
beware of the $5-10 stuff, they can mess up your vision I think. As far as headsets, I have had David Clarks, and they work
great. But, again, I don't think it really matters what you get, as long as they aren't cheap tinker toys. The other obvious thing
we will need is prostate gland gamma-radiation blockers, but I haven't seen those on sale yet.
Make sure when you are shopping for headsets that you try them on with the glasses you will be wearing under them. I have some fancy schmancy prescription Ray Bans that bow out a bit on the sides. The original headset I bought fit over my normal glasses but not my prescription. I changed headsets and bought these foam fillers to put on the side pieces of my prescription shades. $200 bucks and I still look like a dork.....
Ok, let me clarify something. Cheap sunglasses do not destroy your vision. All I am trying to say is cheap sunglasses
are not built with good optics in mind. i am talking mostly about glasses that are $10 or less. They are built to be as cheap
as possible to actually make money while selling them for $5. Now I have no statistics, all I say is when I put on many pairs of
cheap glasses you can see they are warped--especially if you have ever worn any kind of good glasses. My eyes hurt when I put that stuff on.
The lenses are generally flimsy plastic. Add on they have zero protection of any kind. I am not
saying you should not wear them, if you like them, wear them, I don't really care. But I am just throwing out there that if you wear them
6 hrs a day for a number of years, it could hurt your eyes if the optics suck. Don't buy a $200 pair of glasses if you can't afford them or don't
want them. Just beware of extra cheap stuff, they aren't built to protect your eyes, they are built to shade them.