I am a student pilot and just purchased my first sectional chart a couple months ago. While the chart itself is within the effective time frame, there are Aeronautical Chart Bulletins that contain updates to the printed chart. I am supposing that I should notate these changes on my paper chart so I have the most current information, but I am trying to find the best way to do this.

My initial thought was that I could use something like http://vfrmap.com/ to see what those changes look like on an actual chart, and notate them on my chart to match. -But the changes are not reflected on vfrmap, or any other online source that I have found.

Of course I could just create them manually, based on the information listed in the bulletin, but it would be a lot easier to copy them from an existing online chart.

For example, here is the change listed in the bulletin:

enter image description here

But here is the airport on the vfrmap.com:

enter image description here

Maybe I am going overboard here, but I would love some input from more experienced pilots on a practical way to keep my chart current between (6-month) printings.


1 Answer 1


...or any other online source that I have found.

Sites like VFR map, Foreflight and the such get the maps from the freely available digital downloads the FAA produces. These downloads coincide with the physical printed versions and update along with them.

The FAA (at least partially) explains what to do right on the link

...why we publish the Aeronautical Chart Bulletin in the back of each Airport/Facility Directory (AFD) every 56 days and why it is important that you consult the Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) prior to each flight. FAA regulations state that a pilot must be familiar with all available information concerning a flight. This includes having up-to-date charts and keeping them current...

The main point here is to check the available supplements and make sure you have all the up to date information relevant to your flight.

But lets talk about this in practice a bit because its important to understand what changes and what you should mark. NOTAMS often inform you of things like VOR outages and runway closures. In some cases these are permanent but in many cases they are temporary due to construction, maintenance or calibration. You should not go crossing out VOR's or Airports on your chart if they are only going to be down for potentially the duration of your flight that day (as relevant to you). With that in mind you should notate them as appropriate to your flight.

In many cases if the the runway closure or VOR outage is not along your route or a nav aid you plan to use it is of no relevance for you for that flight anyway. When going VFR you may even hear the briefer (if you call in) ask "would you like to hear about nav aid outages in your area". You can easily respond no as you may not be using VOR's to navigate that day.

The key is to make sure you have all the information on your destination and your posible alternate fields along the route and any potential deviation plans. You don't need to keep the whole span of the chart up to date, thats why they reprint them.

If your flight school allows you may want to look into something like foreflight or garmin pilot which makes sure your stuff is always up to date.

FWIW when i used paper charts I used to write all over them and often replace them before they expired because they were written all over.


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