GWX70 Weather Radar

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slowbird
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GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by slowbird »

Hi all, I’ve just made the switch from a DA42 with Iridium satellite weather to a DA62 with the Garmin Weather Radar. Does anyone have any tips for best operation of the weather radar?

It seems to err on the side of caution and show red for what I might say was light rain. Being used to satellite weather in the 42, red colour was almost always storm activity and heavy rain.

Thanks
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by jb642DA »

Does the "red" color change when you "tilt" the radar antenna up? Are you tilting the antenna?

My GWX70 displays weather very well.
However, tilt management has to learned and use the GWX70 effectively.

Here's a link to a free Garmin/Sporty's training video (talks a lot about the GWX70) -

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=588Di0KJ4Ug

It is a good intro to airborne weather radar and you can't beat the price!
The instructor talks about the differences between ground based radar (what you've been seeing in your DA42 - Satellite wx ) versus airborne radar

I think the 55 minute video is an "infomercial" for their longer, purchased course. However, it does provide a lot of good info, especially for someone new to weather radar.

At 4:40 into the video, the instructor says ".......tilt management IS ESSENTIAL......"
30 minutes into video, he starts talking about some GWX70 specifics.
At 42 minutes, he starts talking about using wx radar and "weather threat management".

After you watch the video, let me know what you think of it.
Last edited by jb642DA on Thu May 28, 2020 8:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by ultraturtle »

The official Garmin document "Garmin G1000 Pilot’s Guide for the Diamond DA62" http://static.garmin.com/pumac/190-01896-01_a.pdf provides some of the best guidance I've ever seen for airborne radar in general and is a superb reference for your GWX70. Read the whole chapter, starting on page 351, about 5 times, then read it again. Now read this paragraph about 20 more times:

"With the aircraft flying level, adjust the antenna tilt so ground returns are displayed at a distance that equals the aircraft’s current altitude (AGL) divided by 1,000. For example, if the aircraft is at 14,000 feet, adjust the tilt so the front edge of ground returns are displayed at 14 nautical miles. Note this antenna tilt angle setting. Now, raise the antenna tilt six degrees above this setting. The bottom of the radar beam is now angled down four degrees from parallel with the ground."

Once you establish the proper tilt for your AGL altitude (nearly always between 6 and 7 degrees nose up for the cruise altitudes I generally fly), the system is freakin' awesome - better than a lot of commercial airliners currently flying. At the proper tilt angle, I would never consider flying through red.
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by jb642DA »

Great advice about the "Garmin Pilot's Guide" Rob!!
The freebie video course is decent too!
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by ultraturtle »

jb642DA wrote:
Thu May 28, 2020 7:54 pm

The freebie video course is decent too!
It is. I've watched it several times - again just now.
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by jb642DA »

I like the "price"!!
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by slowbird »

Cheers for that folks. So much for my just press the buttons and see what it does approach. Turns out in this case, reading the manual is compulsory, and not just a mere glance, but a full read once over, then again, and then once more again. Makes so much more sense now.

That video is great too for covering more detail and concept behind the different systems. It's so obvious now that I think about.

Will go for a flight tomorrow and play around with those tilt settings.

Thanks
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by jb642DA »

Glad the info helps Chris.

One more thing to remember - put the radar in "standby" before taxiing! I don't think it's mentioned anywhere in the "AFM."
Stops the dish from "bouncing around" in the nose.
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by jb642DA »

I finally found the standby reference for the WX radar being in "standby" prior taxi -

This does not appear to be mentioned in the AFM!!??

Pg 310 and 311 of the Garmin G1000 manual talks about using "standby" on the ground - specifically -

CAUTION: In Standby mode, the antenna is parked at the center line. It is always a good idea to put the radar in Standby mode before taxiing the aircraft to prevent the antenna from bouncing on the bottom stop and possibly causing damage to the radar assembly.
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Re: GWX70 Weather Radar

Post by Pehu »

Not really spot on to the original topic, but seems we have radar experts here. I have been wondering what the real differences to GWX75 are. Currently Diamond offers only GWX70 for their planes and what I heard GWX75 is still "years" away from certification to DA62 for example.

I hate when the technology is there but the certification processes are so slow.

But whatabout the products? Are there any meaningful differences with these two, 70 & 75, in GA flying? I know more colors yes, but perhaps there is someone here who has used both products.
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