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Thread: GPS Courses, True Course vs. Magnetic Course

  1. #1

    Default GPS Courses, True Course vs. Magnetic Course

    When I fly a GPS approach with the built-in GPS, the courses depicted on the GPS FPL screen are true courses, not magnetic courses. Courses on the approach plates are always magnetic. This happens in the GPS 500 and the G1000. The map view displays the magnetic courses on the lefthand side. They're off by a couple degrees, but that's normal.

    For Example:

    GPS RWY 30L Approach into KVGT, LAPIN Transition


    GPS 500 or G1000 Map view shows 262 magnetic, 260 on the approach plate, 274 on the FPL screen.

    All the other legs are off by the same amount, which happens to be the magnetic variation for that area.

    Sounds like a programming bug to me since the FPL display has "degrees magnetic" after all the courses.

    Mike Easley
    Colorado Springs

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Fort Worth, TX, USA.

    Default RE: GPS Courses, True Course vs. Magnetic Course

    FS9 had the same problem. Certain types of approach procedure legs report a true course (mislabled as a magnetic course) to the GPS.

    This includes the TF (track-to-fix) leg, which is used to build most of the steps in a GPS approach.

    Hope this helps,


  3. #3

    Default RE: GPS Courses, True Course vs. Magnetic Course


    I'm now working with the "Microsoft Games Escalations Team" to resolve the problem. The issue is the tech guys aren't real pilots and don't understand what I'm trying to describe. I'll report back if and when I ever get it resolved.


  4. #4

    Default RE: GPS Courses, True Course vs. Magnetic Course

    According to ARINC:

    TF defines a great circle track between two known fixes and can be determined knowing only the coordinates of the two fixes

    CF defines a magnetic course to a known fix

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