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Thread: Mnemonics

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 1996

    Default Mnemonics

    Mnemonics (pronounced like "knee monicks") are pronounceable memory aids. Typically, each letter of the "word" represents some specific information you wish to recall. CIGAR, GUMP, ARROW and many others have long been used in real world aviation to aid pilots' memory. Some of these are collected here to help you find them in a reliable, easily accessible location.

    1.Preflight Document Check


    Airworthiness certificate


    Radio License

    Operating limitations

    Weight and balance

    2.Before Takeoff


    Controls -- Free moving and move in the correct directions

    Instruments -- Flight instruments set and checked

    Gas -- Adequate supply and fullest tank selected

    Radios -- Radios and other avionics set and checked

    Runup -- Magnetos checked, mixture set, carb heat tested, engine instruments checked

    Safety -- Seats and seat belt, doors and windows checked

    3. Inflight

    • Compass Speed Change Error






    This is a reminder that the compass wants to veer north when you accelerate and veer south when you decelerate.

    • Compass Turning Error






    This is a reminder that when you turn, the compass lags from the north and leads from the south, so that when you turn to the north the compass reading should go past the desired heading before rolling level, while in a turn to the south you should roll out before the compass gets to the desired heading. The lead or lag you must account for is approximately equal to the latitude of your current position.

    • Piston Restart


    Fuel -- select fullest tank

    Air -- carb heat or alternate air selected

    Spark -- magnetos, try left, right and both

    Terminate -- land in best possible location if restart unsuccessful

    • Emergency


    Airspeed -- fly the airplane first, set up best glide speed

    Best place to land -- Pick your landing spot early

    Checklist -- Run through your emergency checklist

    Declare -- Declare an emergency

    Execute -- Execute your forced landing (or other procedure, if applicable)

    4.Before Landing


    Gas -- on fullest tank

    Undercarriage -- down/extended

    Mixture -- set for elevation or full rich near sea level

    Propeller -- set as needed

    Flaps -- set as needed

    Safety -- seats and seat belts, doors and windows checked

    5.On Final

    VASI Indications

    Red over white, you're all right.

    White over white, you're out of sight.
    Alternative: White over white, you'll fly all night.
    Alternative: White over white, you're high as a kite.
    Alternative: White over white, you remain in flight.

    Red over red, you're dead.
    Alternative: Red over red, watch your head.
    Red over Red: hit the bed.

    Red red you're dead
    Red and white you're alright

    White and white you're as high as a kite

    Two whites, you're light; two reds, you're dead.

    6.This one comes from the May/June 2008 issue of FAA Aviation News.

    Emergency Checklist


    Airspeed. Students should memorize the best glide
    speed and should try not to lose any altitude
    until reaching that speed. Once there, they trim
    the aircraft for hands-off glide. The pilot's foremost
    job is to maintain control of the airplane.

    Best field. Students begin by noting wind direction
    and strength, then noting their present
    position. Are they directly over a suitable field now?
    Is there a suitable field at downwind position? Is
    there a suitable field at base or final position?
    Students should also note their present altitude
    relative to traffic pattern altitude, or 800 to 1,000 feet
    above ground level (AGL). Are they too high or low?
    How can they fix it? flaps, extend, slips, S-turns?

    Checklist. Student should start with a flow
    pattern across the panel. If altitude and circumstances
    permit, they should then review the written
    Restart Checklist. Under all circumstances, it's more
    important to fly the airplane than to check the list.

    Declare an emergency. Student should note
    their present position, for example, five miles
    south of Brunswick, then tune the radio to 121.5
    MHz, which should already be in the standby position.
    When making the "Mayday" call, they should
    answer who (tail number), what, where, and
    how many aboard questions. Lastly, they should
    set the transponder to 7700.

    Exit preparation. They should prepare the passengers
    for the landing by ensuring seat belts are
    tightened, then brief passengers on exit procedures
    and assignments. Make sure the first aid/survival
    equipment is in a convenient place, and prepare
    the aircraft, for example, cracking open doors if the
    pilot operating handbook/airplane flight manual
    (POH/AFM) so directs.

    Fire prevention. Shut the fuel off, along with the
    three Ms: mixture, mags, and master. Ensure the
    fire extinguisher is close at hand.

    Ground plan. Pilots should touch down at the
    slowest possible airspeed, and then evacuate
    the aircraft. They need to account for everyone and
    use the first aid/survival equipment as needed.


    Certainly there are other mnemonics in use out there. Feel free to submit them to us.
    Last edited by Nels_Anderson; 12-14-2012 at 05:57 PM.

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