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Thread: Pilot Operating Handbook

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Richmond, BC

    Default Pilot Operating Handbook

    Hi there,

    Does anyone know if there is a digital version of a POH for a Series 5?


    New owner of a Safari

  2. #2
    Rooster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Stutterheim, South Africa

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    Hi there av8rbc.

    I think I have one on digital copy for my 5.
    If you drop me your e-mail address, then I will try to send it in 3 sections to you.

    Kind regards

  3. #3
    Jch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Bellefontaine, Ohio

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    Is there a digital version of the POH for an SS7?

  4. #4
    Senior Member jiott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Portland, OR

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    There is no POH for the SS7 digital or otherwise; only for the SLSA. John McBean says they deliberately don't give out POH for the kit models because you are supposed to test all the parameters and write your own. They will not give you a copy of the SLSA POH. I agree that you are supposed to come up with your own numbers, but I think it would be very helpful and no liability problem for the factory if they could send a digital "MS WORD" template with all the numbers we are supposed to fill in blanked out with XXXX's. A lot of things like checklists, emergency procedures, recommended takeoff/landing procedures, etc. are kind of difficult to come up with on your own. I know some of this is available in the "Kitfox Pilot's Guide" book they sell (which covers all models), but it is not very easy to sort it all out for say an SS7, and it does not cover checklists and several other things that should be in a POH.

    I would like to hear John chime in on this, since they must have a digital template already for their SLSA that could easily be modified to blank out the pertinent numbers that we should test for. I would be willing to pay a reasonable price for it.
    Jim Ott
    Portland, OR
    Kitfox SS7 flying
    Rotax 912ULS

  5. #5
    Senior Member jdmcbean's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Homedale, ID

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    The plan is to offer a modified version of the POH for the S5-SS.
    We do not have an expectation of completion at this time.
    John McBean

    "The Sky is not the Limit... It's a Playground"

  6. #6
    Senior Member jiott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Portland, OR

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    That sounds great John. I'm sure there will be many of us who will appreciate it.
    Jim Ott
    Portland, OR
    Kitfox SS7 flying
    Rotax 912ULS

  7. #7
    Senior Member jtpitkin06's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Greenville, TX

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    I have an outline guide for developing a POH for any airplane.

    This is not a "plug in the numbers and go" because every airplane is different. It is a guide for you to use when creating a POH for your specific airplane. It covers all the sections and procedures. If you follow the guide you will have a complete POH that will meet all requirements

    The guide is 4 pages. A complete POH in 5 x 7 format will run about 40 pages. The outline is in MS word format.

    I will provide it free of charge, to anyone. Just send your email address to me with the subject line POH.

    Send your request DIRECTLY to:


    DO NOT send requests to the Yahoo PM address as most of that gets rejected as spam.

  8. #8
    Senior Member jtpitkin06's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Greenville, TX

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    I opened my email tonight to a flood of requests for the POH outline. So I'm posting it here as well. Just copy and file it away for future use. John Pitkin


    Developing a Pilot Operating Handbook for Experimental Aircraft

    Developing a POH takes time. The final product will fill many pages.
    Following this outline will ensure you meet all the FAA requirements of a POH.
    This outline purposely does not spell out every procedure in final wording as each experimental airplane is different.


    This is an outline of items you should cover in your Pilot Operating Handbook ( POH ) for an Experimental Aircraft. Keep each section as simple as possible and as non-restrictive as possible. The goal is to describe every part of the airplane and how it operates. Most of the items can be addressed with a short paragraph. The performance section may include charts or tables. Many Items are intuitive, but you have to spell it out. You donít need to describe how to build it, just how it works. For Example:

    Two doors are installed. One on each side. To open the doors from the outside or inside rotate the handle to the open position. Lift the door.upward. An airspring shock assists opening and holds the door open. To close the doors, pull the door downward. Latch the door closed by rotating the handle to the closed and locked position. Caution should be used if opening the doors in flight as wind loads my cause the door to open suddenly. Speed should be reduced to minimum safe airspeed when opening and closing doors in flight.

    Formatting Your POH

    A 5 X 7 three ring binder is a good size and easy to make revisions.

    Divide your POH into five sections.

    • Normal Procedures
    • Systems
    • Limitations
    • Abnormal/Emergency
    • Performance.

    Each chapter should have expanded information on operating procedures and how they relate to the checklists.

    You can start with:



    NORMAL PROCEDURES should include the following sub-sections:

    General. Identify the type of airworthiness certificate it has. Either Experimental- Amateur Built, or Experimental- Light Sport Aircraft. Include your normal operating checklist here. Make a small copy of the normal checklist to use in the airplane. Description of flight controls. Hot and cold weather operations and Deicing / anti icing which may be as simple as a statement of no icing permitted.

    Preflight. Expanded preflight procedures. Passenger briefing. Do not gloss over this. Passengers must be briefed on how to work the seat belts and how to open the door.

    Starting. Expanded before start and starting engine checklist. After engine start.

    Taxi and takeoff. Expanded taxi checklist. Crosswind procedures. Use of transponder. Take off procedures. Use of flaps. Normal takeoff and obstacle takeoff climb speeds.

    Climb. Flap retraction. Instrument scans for engine operation.

    Cruise. Fuel burn monitoring and balancing (It could be as simple as flying with one wing low.

    Descent. Descent planning. Landing distance compared to field length.
    Altimeter setting. Use of carburetor heat. Shoulder harnesses on.

    Before landing. Flap extension. Approach speed. Stabilized approach. Crosswind landings. Go around procedures. Flap retraction.

    After landing. Brake usage. Flap retraction. Parking. Passenger deplaning. Prop avoidance.

    This section has information on how to operate all controls and installed equipment.

    Doors and windows
    Cabin heat and ventilation
    Operation in rain or freezing conditions.
    Communications equipment
    Flight instruments and displays.
    Programming GPS or other navigation equipment (This can be as simple as a statement to refer to the GPS handbook and a handbook is required for flight.)
    Electrical system
    Standby power system. (Battery items)
    Pitot static system.
    Flight controls. Dual or single,
    Landing gear, tire pressures.
    Brakes. Dual or single.
    Steering. Tricycle or tailwheel.
    Rudders. Fixed or adjustable.
    Trim system, electric or manual, standby system.
    Fuel system
    Warning lights.
    Fire protection or procedures.
    Oil system
    Engine cooling system


    Minimum number of crew. (We all know itís one pilot, but you have to spell it out.)
    Minimum License Required (Sport Pilot, Recreational or PPL)
    Allowed maneuvers, stalls, spins, chandelles, lazy eights etc.
    Maximum airspeeds,
    Maximum altitude.
    Engine limits for RPM take-off, cruise, maximum and minimum temperatures, and minimum pressures. Use of carb heat. (some things show up in more than one area.)
    Max take off weight
    Max landing weight
    CG envelope
    Gross weight
    Maximum demonstrated crosswind

    The limitations will also have a list of all required placards inside and outside.


    You should list procedures for the following:

    Aborted take-off procedures.
    Engine failure after take-off.
    Engine Fire (turn off the fuel)
    Cabin fire
    Smoke in cockpit
    Electrical failure
    Engine failure in cruise
    Flight control failure
    Jammed flight control
    Jammed stabilizer or trim.
    Runaway Trim

    (You wonít have these figures until you do the flight testing.)

    Takeoff distance at known weight.
    Landing distance at known weights.
    Climb rate at known weights.
    Best rate of climb indicated airspeed.
    Best angle of climb indicated airspeed.
    Fuel consumption and range chart.
    Stall Speeds


    That about does it. Using the above outline you will cover all of the items required by the FAA for a POH.. Remember to keep it simple. An average POH for an experimental airplane in a 5 X 7 format will be about 40 to 50 pagers.

    Do not put anything extra in the POH that is not required. This document becomes controlling. If you say the rudder is painted red for high visibility, then it must be red to fly the airplane. So, donít say the rudder is red unless you want to restrict it to that color.

    John Pitkin
    Greenville, Texas

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Mt Beauty, Australia

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    Hi John,

    Thanks very much for this template - it will be very useful!

    Appreciate as always.



  10. #10
    JohnB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Charlotte, MI

    Default Re: Pilot Operating Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by jdmcbean View Post
    The plan is to offer a modified version of the POH for the S5-SS.
    We do not have an expectation of completion at this time.
    Any update on this? Or does anyone have a template POH for the SS that they would be willing to share?

    I did find some nice POH templates on the Vans Air Force Forum:

    It'd be nice if we could do something similar here.
    Charlotte, MI
    Kitfox 7-SS
    Rotax 912ULS / Whirlwind Prop
    Garmin G3X Touch

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