Product Reviews & Company Profiles

  • June 2015-

    1965Flo Irwin starts a new business in the basement of family home in Fullerton, Calif. selling just one product: spruce lumber for aircraft builders. She takes orders by mail and phone, and hires one man to cut the spruce. A one-page flyer is the first Aircraft Spruce “catalog.”


  • May 2014-

    First off, let's get one Old Aviators Tale ("OAT") out of the way right now. It's safe to install retreaded aircraft tires on retractable gear airplanes.

    For decades a rumor has circulated that retreaded tires should never be installed on a retractable gear airplane because the retreads

  • I felt like a kid at Christmas time—and the UPS man was Santa. The email I had received said that the Garmin 396 I had ordered had shipped and should be delivered in the next 48 hours. Every time I saw that big brown truck drive through the neighborhood I found myself looking to see if he was going

  • August 2005-

    General Aviation aircraft standard instrumentation includes an ammeter or current load meter to monitor your electrical system. Electrical power is a combination of Volts x Amps = Watts, or power. An ammeter tells you only half of the story.

    In addition, the indicator charging condit

  • June 2005-

    The Problem

    Cessna single-engine aircraft flap systems changed from a manual to an electrical design in the 1960s. Bill, a 1966 Cessna 182J, and his pilot endured life with the curse of this design until installing the Visual Instruments Flap Position Indicator STC.

    The original Cess

  • An Insight G3 Engine Monitor Pirep

    Part 03: Baffle Seals

    The Insight G3 Engine Monitor keeps digging situations out of the woodwork—or more aptly, the engine compartment.

    Bill, my pampered 182 and I went flying one nice spring day in late March and the two middle cylinder temperatures went immedi

  • 03-13

    I’ve been a Flight Guide user for longer than I can remember. For many years one of the iconic little brown loose-leaf binders covering the Western States had a place in my flight bag—and more than once came in very handy when I needed to find an airport with a nearby hotel or restaurant.


  • March 2013-

    Freshening up your aircraft’s interior can be an important update for many reasons. In addition to looking good, it increases your and your passengers’ comfort. New carpet and seat coverings often add value to your aircraft while reducing cockpit noise and vibration.

    Many pilots dream

  • November 2012

     Recently I flew with my friend Dean in his straight-tail Cessna 172. I was photographing our friend’s newest airplane, so I opened the window. This rather large opening created lots of fresh air. And lots of wind noise.

    Dean and I just shouted back and forth to each other (cross-coc

  • October 2012

    The sun was casting long shadows on the dry Arizona lake bed. A gathering of engineers stand restlessly behind a battery of cameras, their long jackets zipped to their chins to keep the early morning chill at bay. Above them a giant C-123 military aircraft flashes in the morning light

  • September 2012

    There are many weight and balance applications to wade through, and you need to be careful. I recently discovered AeroW&B, an aircraft weight and balance application available at the Apple App Store for $2.99. The app was developed for use with iPhones and iPads.

    Key factors for a g

  • July 2012

    Real-time, in-flight weather is not a new concept. Sirius XM and WSI have been providing it to pilots for years.

    ADS-B, the key element in the United States government’s plan for the NextGen air traffic control system, has been in a long and slow development process. The service, which p

  • April 2012

    If you think synthetic vision is a gimmick, or one of those nice-to-have features that’s not worth the money, you don’t understand the technology. To be honest, I too was skeptical about the value of syn vision at first. But I get to fly a lot of different aircraft and have had the oppor

  • February 2012

    I will start right off and tell you that I really like the Pilot Bag manufactured by BrightLine Bags. The bag is built well, performs as advertised, and after several months of use seems likely to last a long time. I would not hesitate to recommend it to a friend.

    It has already pass

  • February 2102

    Pilots and airplane owners always need new stuff. Flying’s like that. The stuff could be a new headset, a bigger flight bag, or flight simulation software. Unlike other hobbies, airplane stuff can’t be purchased at Wal-Mart—or Neiman Marcus, for that matter. Airplane stuff requires an

  • January 2012

    Paul Saurenman, owner of Pacific Oil Cooler Service (POCS) and Aero-Classics Heat Transfer Products Inc., stood in front of Jen and Kent Dellenbusch, publishers of Cessna Flyer, and me, freelance aviation writer who after 45 years in the av bizz views all things aeronautical with a sha

  • January 2013

    I thought about adding a full-featured engine monitor to my panel for a long time, but I didn’t make the decision to commit until Insight Instrument Corp.’s G Series graphic engine monitors grabbed my attention at EAA AirVenture 2012.

    This monitor series uses a color LCD coupled with

  • January 2005

    Witness the Cirrus phenomenon. Although there are undoubtedly many factors affecting the popularity of Cirrus aircraft, the standard equipment parachute is certainly an important one. Fueled in part by the bestselling book of 2002, “Free Flight” by James M. Fallows, people are seeking

  • November 2004

    When it comes to replacing an engine in an airplane, an owner can go down several avenues.

    The choices sometimes involve a confusing collection of titles like rebuilt, overhauled or remanufactured—but those are processes that have their limitations. The only sure thing is new.

    RAM A

  • About one year ago, Sporty’s Pilot Shop ( announced an updated version of an audio tape program they had originally put out nearly 25 years earlier.

    The press release from Sporty’s said that “Chicago O’Hare IFR,” which had been used by thousands of pilots to learn IFR communications

  •  September 2004

    By now most people are familiar with the term FADEC (Full-Authority Digital Engine Control). Mountain High Equipment & Supply has modified that acronym with their proprietary FADOC™, or the EDS-D1a Full-Authority Digital Oxygen Control.

    FADOC is a simple concept, but one which ha

  • October 2004

    The saga of the Insight Instrument Corporation began in the winter of 1980. Engineer John Youngquist was flying a Bonanza on a night flight when the airplane’s engine began to run rough. It misfired and stumbled a few times while the existing panel instruments showed absolutely nothing

  •  Pilots and airplane owners always need new stuff. Flying’s like that. The stuff could be a new headset, a bigger flight bag, or flight simulation software. Unlike other hobbies, airplane stuff can’t be purchased at Wal-Mart—or Neiman Marcus, for that matter. Airplane stuff requires an “Airplane Stu