|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : pwm|
airport : rxd
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 4000|
msl bound upper : 8000
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, Low Wing, 1 Eng, Retractable Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Route In Use||enroute airway : zbw|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : private|
pilot : instrument
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 30|
flight time total : 750
flight time type : 50
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : radar|
|Qualification||controller : radar|
|Anomaly||aircraft equipment problem : critical|
other anomaly other
other spatial deviation
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
|Resolutory Action||controller : issued new clearance|
|Air Traffic Incident||other|
On climb out from rkd in IMC, I adjusted directional gyroscope to agree with compass. After some time, ATC began to question my heading. I realized I had a problem and blamed it on a precessing gyro in the dg. With every correction from ATC, I adjusted the dg. Finally, I was vectored to portland and asked to land. Once I broke out of clouds I realized my problem was not with dg but with wet compass. A bad wet compass just did not occur to me.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: THE WET COMPASS IN AN SMA FAILED WHILE THE PLT WAS FLYING IFR IN IMC.
Narrative: ON CLBOUT FROM RKD IN IMC, I ADJUSTED DIRECTIONAL GYROSCOPE TO AGREE WITH COMPASS. AFTER SOME TIME, ATC BEGAN TO QUESTION MY HDG. I REALIZED I HAD A PROB AND BLAMED IT ON A PRECESSING GYRO IN THE DG. WITH EVERY CORRECTION FROM ATC, I ADJUSTED THE DG. FINALLY, I WAS VECTORED TO PORTLAND AND ASKED TO LAND. ONCE I BROKE OUT OF CLOUDS I REALIZED MY PROB WAS NOT WITH DG BUT WITH WET COMPASS. A BAD WET COMPASS JUST DID NOT OCCUR TO ME.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.