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Miscellaneous Notes, Aircraft Type-ID and ATC Clearances

84R has been flying a lot since coming back on-line with new fuel bladders at the end of June, partly due to the misfortunes of 756RA six months ago that made 84R until just this week the only flyable 182RG in the fleet.  Thank you to all the pilots who’ve flown 84R this summer and who’ve also been patient with the inevitable maintenance issues that arrive when a 43 year-old plane is actively flown.  For just a few examples: Replaced a sticking pilot’s PTT switch; fixed a loose passenger window latch; overhauled a leaky primer pump; replaced a failed main battery (at AVX!); replaced the old window covers; replaced the cracked right exhaust manifold.

Many Plus One pilots will know that I’ve been working to get 84R upgraded as much as possible, and as my budget could absorb.  The plane now has a nice complement of newer avionics: Two Garmin G5 AI and HSI displays, a GTX-345 ADS-B In/Out transponder, a new Garmin GTC-255a Com2/Nav2 with glide slope CDI, a GNS-430W GPS, a JPI EDM830 engine monitor, and a Flightstream 210 to connect via Bluetooth to Foreflight on iPads or iPhones.  The key item missing has been a good autopilot.  I had settled on Garmin’s GFC-500, but it was not certified for the 182RG until late this summer.  I still want to install the GFC-500, but with airplane owners pushing to get ADS-B equipment installed before January 2020, no avionics shop has any time available for anything else before next year.  Stay tuned…..

I recently attended a presentation by the MYF tower manager, and picked up a few useful bits of information and advice:

  • ATC would like pilots to use the correct ICAO aircraft types in flight plans or when asking for flight following.  For example, PA28 hasn’t been in use for over 10 years. Instead use P28A, P28R, etc.  The correct type for 84R is C82R, not C182 or 182R.  This gives ATC clear information about a plane’s performance in their airspace.
  • Pilots who want an IFR clearance to depart MYF but also want to avoid a long wait for IFR release can request the SOLEDAD DEPARTURE.  This procedure allows the flight to depart MYF VFR and fly heading 270 at or below 2,500′ until given a climb clearance by ATC, which activates the IFR clearance.  The ceiling-visibility minimums for the procedure are 3000′ – 3NM.  See FAA NOTAMS for more information.
  • VFR On Top Clearances:  Pilots who just want to get above the clouds and then cancel IFR, should request clearance to OCN for westbound departures or RYAHH for eastbound departures.  For an IFR flight to a destination, file OTP with departure clearance.
  • VFR Arrivals from the west:  ATC requests pilots flying south down the coast to wait until passing Mt. Soledad before turning east to join the downwind pattern.  This avoids potential traffic alerts by putting arriving planes more than a mile south of those departing MYF to the west.