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IFR: A Structured Approach

- 15 customer reviews.

IFR: A Structured Approach

IFR: A Structured Approach

If your instrument training was as haphazard and unstructured as that of most general aviation pilots, then this book may cause a profound change in your method for managing the extraordinary demands of single-pilot IFR. With the help of this book, you will establish your own personal standard operating practices for IFR., including the incorporation of checklists, flows, callouts, briefings, and "by the numbers" aircraft control. Your flying will be much less haphazard, and much more regimented, structured, and above all, safe.

A wholesale review and analysis of IFR operations with special emphasis on the integration of GPS into modern IFR. This is long overdue. Tens of thousands of general aviation IFR pilots are now using GPS. Most of these pilots took their last ground school or IFR written exam years before the advent of GPS and have never really studied the new system. Instructors see the effects of this lack of training all the time. Many pilots have only a perfunctory knowledge of how the GPS systems works, and how it sometimes fails to work. Many pilots comprehend only a small fraction of the capabilities of their specific GPS units. Even more commonly seen are failures to understand the new regulations that govern GPS use and the newly formatted charts that have evolved with the GPS approaches. There are a great many subtleties here, and it is time for serious instrument pilots to roll up their sleeves and get to work bringing themselves up to date. This book will help.

250 pages, hardback
Published May 2003.
by John Eckalbar

Click here to view the Table of Contents for IFR: A Structured Approach
View the Introduction for IFR: A Structured Approach


"For the instrument pilot seeking to upgrade his or her skill, John C. Eckalbar's IFR: A Structured Approach provides compelling insights...If one book could help you make the leap from a bit player to a skilled conductor of instrument flight, this is probably it."
    -- AOPA Pilot Magazine, November, 2003, p. 168

"There is an EXCELLENT discussion of this whole GPS area in John Eckalbar's new book IFR: A Structured Approach...The GPS chapter alone is worth getting the is certainly the best instrument flying book I have ever read, and it also ought to be required reading right after (new instrument pilots) finish formal training ...It is also quite funny in places. He has a great sense of humor...Wish I knew him."
    --Fred W. Scott, Jr, ATP, B55

"Just picked up a copy of your new book at OSH. While I am still working my way through it, it is already apparent to me that this is perhaps the most useful aviation training publication I have encountered in almost 40 years of GA involvement. I regularly train at FSI, SimCom and BPPP, and have spent many hours with many CFI's (including a number of high time airline captains) since I began flying in 1966; none have been able to put it all together in the thoughtful, lucid way you do in this book. I have read your other books and found them useful, but IFR is a different kind of book, with its emphasis of procedures rather than technical matters. IMO, there is a large unmet need for this kind of training material in GA. For those of us who have not come up through the military or airline path, access to this information is quite limited, and much of what is available is outdated or otherwise irrelevant to flying in today's IFR system."--
    -- Fredric R. (Rick) Boswell, PhD

"A unique and welcome aspect of the book is Eckalbar's treatment of GPS. Not only does he give it extensive treatment, he integrates it with other nav systems the way we do in the real world. Eckalbar addresses a problem I struggle with, remembering to run in-flight checklists. His suggestion is to use the trigger of power change. Any time you change a power setting, you run a (the appropriate) checklist. Based on his discussion of the subject, I've modified my checklists and adopted the "power change" trigger idea. The book is targeted at pilots flying the high performance singles and twins. The flight example he uses is a Beech Baron equipped with the full suite of avionics: HSI, autopilot and Garmin 430 GPS. However, there's plenty in the book for the more basic 172 driver as well. The discussion of enroute and approach charts is enlightening and includes the latest additions to IFR approaches LNAV/VNAV and RNP."
    -- Peter Cassidy


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Customer Reviews For IFR: A Structured Approach:
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Wednesday, April 15, 2015
A must read for any serious Pilot
by Glen from Richardson TX USA 

Pros: Precision flying training at it's best.
Review: It has been the most informative flying book read to date.
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Friday, March 20, 2015
by from  
Review: Excellent!
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Thursday, November 27, 2014
by William from Portsmouth RI USA 
Review: best book on practical instrument flying
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Wednesday, June 01, 2011
by A Customer from Collierville TN USA 

Review: Not an easy book to wade through.
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Sunday, September 12, 2010
Very comprehensive; very technical; lots to practice
by Gerry from Toronto, Ontario 

Pros: Good illustrations to support the technical concepts; good use of examples.
Cons: Perhaps inclusion of a few more anecdotes would lighten the reading. This is a tough book to read from front to back. I needed to take each chunk of info and go practice.
Review: Mr. Eckalbar is very informed and experienced so can pack a lot of information into a topic or a chapter. This will be excellent material to polish up skills and precision for an experience IFR pilot. I'm brand new IFR so this was like "drinking from a firehose". Lots of important knowledge about systems and procedures; lots of procedures to practice.
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Saturday, October 24, 2009
Good book... as advertised
by btvdan from Vermont 

Pros: Perfect follow-on to FAA IFR text, as advertised, excelent writing
Cons: no practical weather analysis strategy
Review: This book is an excellent companion to some of the standard Instrument text books availabe (like the FAA or Jeppesen books). It is well writen and the content seems to be completely as advertised. It ties the theory together with the practice in a way that many instructors just never do (no offence... I have the greatest respect for my instructors). I don`t give 5 stars because I think it could have some practical weather and risk management information as well. The author makes it clear, though, that discussion of in depth weather analysis are beyond the scope of the book. Most of the discussion is built relative to flying the Barron. Don`t let that scare you, though. The procedures for the Barron are more complex... so, it will be ovious what applies and what does not apply to a simpler aircraft.
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Monday, April 27, 2009
Provides excellent foundation for safe, single-pilot IFR
by A Customer from Heber City, UT, USA 

Pros: Very informative and expertly tailored for the single pilot in any IFR situation.
Cons: A bit long on narrative. Could use more concise summaries.
Review: This is a book I wish I had read during my early IFR training. Every few pages, I come across an idea that came to me only after many hours in the cockpit. It will be a real accelerator for new IFR pilots and a great resource for those seasoned pilots looking to improve their technique. If the author is reading this: My only suggestion to improve the book would be to add a concise summary of tips with each chapter to help those of us who want a quick refresher of key points. This would make the book much easier to grasp and integrate into your personal flying system.
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Wednesday, February 11, 2009
by Thomas from Davis CA USA 
Pros: Well-written
Review: Excellent review of instrument flying principles. The author's style is readable and compelling. His narrative style keeps the reader interested. I learned more than I would like to admit.
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Friday, December 12, 2008
One of the best aviation books I've purchased!
by Mooney Bruce from Denver CO USA 

Pros: The whole book is a, "Pro."
Cons: I wish the book was twice the length it is!!
Review: This book fills in the gaps created during instrument training. During instrument training a student is more concerned with being able to fly the airplane with instruments and pass the test. During training there are only a few cross country flights required. By the time you finish obtaining the instrument rating the student is well versed in ILS, NDB and VOR approaches, holds and the other required flying skills. Howver, there is still a lot to learn about instrument cross country flying and applying what was learned in training. This book answers all those nagging little questions that go through your mind during training. It takes you on a flight, in IMC, in California and visits three airports. In addition to explaining exactly what you should be doing before you ever start, it goes into great detail about the actual flight and applicable procedures. Intermittently the author calls a "time-out" and goes into graphic detail about the background of why there are certain procedures performed at certain points during IMC flight. This has been orated before in other reviews but I will, once again, make the statement. I strongly recommend this book to anyone who has completed their instrument rating and is still a little tentative about actually flying in the IMC environment. GREAT BOOK!!!
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Friday, October 10, 2008
GREAT BOOK, but Mr. Eckalbar...
by Arsenio Delgado Sr. from Tucson, AZ 

Review: Just perusing the book,I wonder why you use the phrase,"...climbing to ten point five." (Ch.6, pg 94, 'On Top' section). The AIM specifically states: 4-2-9. Altitudes and Flight Levels a. Up to but not including 18,000 feet MSL, state the separate digits of the thousands plus the hundreds if appropriate. EXAMPLE- 1. 12,000 one two thousand 2. 12,500 one two thousand five hundred Also, some color photos would help see 'blue line' and other stuff better... Good book overall, though.
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Monday, August 11, 2008
Excellent Book
by A Customer from Lutherville MD USA 

Review: Very good refresher for me 1 year out from IFR training.
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Monday, April 07, 2008
I have bought several copies because I keep giving them away
by Peter from Bend OR USA 

Pros: Simple, easy-to-implement instrument procedures, Realistic cross-country scenario, Detailed explanation of the IFR system.
Review: I own all of John Eckalbar's books. He is my favorite aviation author. His books are perfect for the pilot who wants to understand flying "to the next level." IFR: A Structured Approach changed my flying permanently. Until I read this book, my instrument flying was sloppy and unpredictable, and I am a CFII! Dr. Eckalbar's systematic approach to instrument flying is straightforward and easy to adopt. The book uses an actual long IFR cross-country flight in a Baron as an engaging, fun theme to hold all the pieces together. Beyond the subject of flying in a structured manner, this book also goes into detail about how the IFR system really works. This is need-to-know information that can't be found rolled up in one place anywhere else. The treatment on departure procedures is second to none and a must read for all my students. Buy this book! Read it and read it again!
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Sunday, November 04, 2007
by Brian from Chapel Hill, NC 
Review: This is a great book for those who have just received their IFR ticket and want to read about how the system works. However, the setting is based on flying on the west coast and as with most flying some things are a little different depending on what part of the country you are in, but overall it gives you a good general sense of what to do and when to do it.
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Tuesday, March 06, 2007
by Ron H. Ayanzen from Scottsdale, AZ 
Pros: Excellent intro into the complexities of IFR flying.
Cons: All pictures are B&W - when a color reference is made, such as 'Blueline', you can't tell where it is because there are no color pictures/plates.
Review: This is a MUST read if you are starting to learn IFR! Although it is suitable and applicable for all general aviation aircraft, it is exceptionally valuable reading for those who are starting their IFR training in a Beech Bonanza or Baron. This product has EXCEEDED my expectations and I highly recommend it for anyone learning IFR.
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Thursday, February 01, 2007
by A Customer from chicago 
Review: I really enjoyed the clear presentation of IFR skills and procedures. His suggestions for IFR flying are high on my todo list.
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