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Timing outbound before you start a procedure turn two or one minute?

Asked by: 5922 views Instrument Rating

Cessna 172 on 130 bearing 20NM from KVRB VERO BEACH airport. When flying the full approach VOR RWY 11R, to VRB VOR and then intercepting R300 outbound before starting the PT. Should I go outbound for one or two minute before starting the PT outbound? 

3 Answers

  1. Lucas on May 29, 2012

    As you can see in the profile view of the approach plate you  are to remain within 10 NM of VRB Vor so in general for a C-172 you would go about 2 min assuming little or no wind. If you had a 100 kt tailwind you would probably go only 30 sec, and if you had a 100 kt headwind you would be going for 5 min or more. So again there is no set rule in real life except to remain within 10 NM of VRB.
    In general if you are shooting a non terminal approach such as the one at VRB you go outbound for 2 minutes do the 180 and then intercept the Final Approach Course inbound. If instead you where shooting the approach at New Smyrna Beach, which is a terminal approach (the station is located at the airport itself), you would be going outbound for about 3 minutes to give you more time to set up for the approach.
    Again the important thing is that you remain within the distance shown on the profile view (90% of the time 10 NM but it can be 5-15 NM). So if you have DME or GPS you would go by that and start the procedure turn at around 6-7 DME.
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  2. John D. Collins on May 29, 2012

    There isn’t a single correct answer to your question.  You have to remain within 10 NM of the VOR at all times while performing the course reversal maneuver. A typical speed one might choose to use for the approach in a C172 would be 90 Kts. This is 1.5 NM per minute.  After 2 minutes, you would be 3 NM from the VOR. If you 45 degree commence the turn at this point, you will probably be just outside of HRBOR intersection when you re-intercept the course inbound. This will provide you between approximately two to three minutes to get established on the inbound course to the VOR and correct for any wind drift. If you chose one minute before starting the turn, it would give you less time to get established inbound.  I wouldn’t want to be more than 4 minutes outbound before starting the turn as it would be easy to exceed the 10 NM limit. 
    Once past HRBOR you can descend to 1200 MSL. At the VOR, I would suggest you use your 5 T’s (Time, Turn, Twist, Throttle , Talk) or equivalent as an aid to start your clock, turn to 115, twist your OBS to 115, set your approach power, etc. Remember don’t start down until you are established, in other words, your CDI is within half scale (the instrument PTS permits 3/4 scale).  Descending before the CDI is at 3/4 scale or more is an automatic bust on the instrument check ride. 

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  3. Anrboy on Jun 01, 2012

    I would do a two minute outbound as opposed to a 1 minute, especially as a beginner, just because you won’t be 100% sure what the winds are doing and if they are too strong they could push you to an uncomfortable position on a 1 min outbound. Just stay within 10nm.

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