Maintenance Matters

November 2016 Issue

Magnetic Compass Upkeep: More Than Fluid Fills

You might save money by helping with time-consuming calibrations, but a new replacement makes better sense than attempting major bench repairs.

Among the minimum equipment required for VFR and IFR flying, FAR 91.205 still lists the magnetic direction indicator as a must-have item. Donít confuse this with the gyroscopic (or equivalent) directional indicator. Thatís required for IFR, in addition to a compass. Given the primitive nature of a magnetic compass, owners are often shocked at the impressive invoices it can generate when it fails. And compasses do fail. Ever have one that leaked its fluid down the front of the instrument panel?

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