Now that my airplane is flying well and I have some extra time on my hands, I thought it would be good to customize the MGL screens. The original screens didn’t provide the information I was seeking.
What as missing for me was a flow of the critical data needed for safe flight and the ‘nice to have data’. My plane was not going to be used for aerobatics so I didn’t need a G-meter, I did not have an AoA. Being a turbo, the MAP was more important than the RPMs, etc.
So I downloaded the software (after painfully having to buy a PC…I love my Mac), and installed it. You can find the software here: Simulator
Next was learning to use the simulator. It took some time and it would be difficult to write a how-to, so if you are interested in learning please send me a message and I will work with you on training you how to use the simulator.
The next step was to create a list of needs:
- EGT and CHT temps by cylinder
- Amps and Volts in the same area
- x-wind speed
- Maint and Tach timers
- Screens for flying in the pattern vs. long cross country screens
The results took several flights to find out what I liked and didn’t like.
Screen #1 – My main page when staying in the pattern
I modified the existing screen and replaced the top and bottom data panes (engine / fuel) with more information
- Timers are all aligned at the top next to the Volts and Amps. The Com was separated from the Transponder because during flight I often found myself clicking the wrong one. I added a dedicated ‘alarm acknowledge’ button between them.
- The engine pane was modified to add range, endurance and fuel flow in gph. The EGT and CHT had individual temps added and the tach/rpm were redesigned. I eliminated the graphical GPH for a small numerical to save a lot of space.
- The flight panel was mostly untouched, except I removed the G-meter and added x-wind and adjusted the coloring a bit of the ground.
Additionally, I created a new function, weight & balance for my plane. When you push the W/B button, this new screen pops up. The fuel is read from the actual tank and the remaining 4 buttons bring up a key pad to enter W&B parameters.
Screen #2 – Used for local flying to a close by airport.
Apply the new top and bottom panes and extend the size of the map. Added airspace draws around all B, C and D airspace
Screen #3 – Cross country trips
This screen is similar to #2, but with the addition of flight planning information.
- WP – Waypoint identifier name
- HDG – Heading to WP
- Dist – Nm to WP
- ETE – Estimated time to WP
- ETA – Estimated time of arrival to WP
I also added wind data, TAS and GS along with a quick hit GOTO GPS/Waypoint button
Screen #4 – When on a long flight at altitude with A/P enabled
This screen provides key engine information, airspeed and altitude along with autopilot box for AP control. The rest is a decluttered GPS screen
Screen #5 – Meh…something I was playing with but just don’t like. Maybe a future enhancement or possible delete. It was too cluttered when flying. I do like the custom HSI unit I designed, but the middle is just too busy.
Screen #6 – My startup screen and primary flight screen when flying cross country
Since I fly with an Ipad mini that contains my ADS-B in data and where I do all my flight planning, I rarely use the moving map on my EFIS. This layout maximizes my syn vision while still providing great data about my cross-country trip.
Additionally, I added a countdown time to use for inflight refueling (from aux to primary tank) and my cool down post landing.
All of my screens are available for sharing. Just go here my screens to download them:
- Link to: Zip file of the screens
I hope you enjoy the screens! Here’s a pic of screen 6 in action!