Inexpensive Instrumentation

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Belite Electronics has introduced the Patch Flyer line of solid state flight instrumentation that sells for less than $1000. These easy-to-install instruments are offered individually or in full-panel configuration. Full-panel configuration includes volt meter, engine EGT and CHT, fuel quantity, an above ground level altimeter, turn rate indicator, inclinometer, G meter, and airspeed indicator with pitot input. The EGT and CHT instruments use 24 LED columns for each parameter, are color coded to warn of excessive temperatures and can be connected to common temperature probes. While designed for non-precision "low and slow" applications, the company says the flight instruments can be more accurate than traditional steam gauge instruments and are easier to use. For instance, setting the local altimeter is as easy as pressing a single button that establishes ground reference.

Each instrument priced between $50 to $160 individually - weighs half an ounce, while the entire Patch Flyer line weighs less than one pound with mounting hardware. Each instrument displays information using daylight-readable LEDs that are dimmable in darker cockpits. Some individual instruments offer enough portability to remove them from the aircraft and stow in a flight bag. Power consumption is roughly three watts and the instruments accept 8-28 volts of DC power input.