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Is your iPad "Cockpit Ready?" How to choose what to use?

iPad must be made Cockpit Ready so that it is in a position to be quickly and safely utilized when needed at a moment’s notice.

iPad Cockpit Ready as defined by MyGoFlight:

  • iPad must be appropriately secured and viewable [and operable with one hand] during critical phases of flight and must not interfere with flight control movement per the FAA. [Bracketed words added by MyGoFlight for clarity] FAA Advisory Circular AC No: 120-76B, P4.c This applies when using Type B applications which include apps like ForeFlight, WingX, Garmin Pilot, iEFB, etc. For Part 121, 125, 135, or 91 subpart F & K. We advocate all part 91 operators follow this directive for the iPad to be useful in-flight.
  • An unsecured iPad (or any touch screen device) can not be easily operated with one hand in-flight with normal/turbulent cockpit movement, as required when hand flying
  • Critical phases of flight are defined as taxi, takeoff, landing and under 10,000 feet other than cruise. FAA Advisory Circular AC No: 120-76B, P4.f
  • Achieved through the use of iPad specific kneeboards and non-permanent mounts that do not require an STC. Such mounts are pilot installable/removable without tools.
  • Pilot proficient in the use of iPad apps and iPad operating procedures. For more information on proficiency, click here.

How do you choose what to use?

What is the best way to make your iPad Cockpit Ready and to secure your iPad in your airplane? The answer depends on many factors including airplane make and model, avionics configuration, mounted or kneeboard preference, the apps you wish to use, and size and height of pilot and how close they sit to the controls. 

There are two main choices: 

  • Mounted – non-permanent windshield/suction, yoke, glare shield or panel. No STC required.
  • Kneeboards – single leg or lap desk.

And there are critical accessories: 

  • Screen viewing – anti-glare screen protectors, cleaners
  • Power - backup batteries and onboard chargers.
  • External GPS – accurate positioning data for the iPad.
  • Transporting – flight bags designed to protect the iPad to and from the airplane

Mounted solutions. Non-permanent mounted solutions are preferred when there is a place that the iPad can be mounted that allows the iPad to be easily seen and operated and where the iPad will not interfere with the view outside, the view of other instruments, or the controls. Mounted solutions are for pilots that do not like using a kneeboard or do not have the room for a kneeboard around the controls. And mounted solutions are necessary when using apps that display a PFD or synthetic vision view which are best viewed along your line of sight.

Mounted solutions require a secure mounting surface. Possible mounting positions include:

All MyGoFlight Mounted Solutions are non-permanent, pilot installable/removable without tools, and as such, do NOT require an STC for their use.

Category/Product ImageUse Aircraft 
Suction Cup Mounts      
Flex Suction  -0003-sport-wsuction-mount.jpg Windshield and side window.
  • Cessna 1xx series
  • Cirrus
  • Many Others
Compact Suction Cup  compact-suction.gif  Side window.
  • Various Business Jets
  • Light Sport Craft
Double Suction Cup  Jet Mount - Double Suction Cup  Side window or panel.
  • Various Commercial Jets, Boeing, Airbus, etc.
Yoke Mounts      
Flex Yoke  with-sport-portrait.png  For mounting to yokes that extend from the panel. Also will work on many glare shields and support struts. Fits arms from 5/8” to 1.5”
  • Piper
  • Cessna
  • Citation
  • King Air
  • Many others
Flex Yoke Beech  -0001-sport-wyoke-beech.jpg  For mounting to thicker yokes typically found on Beechcraft aircraft. Fits arms from 1” to 3.5”
  • Baron and other Beechcraft aircraft
Jet Mounts      
Chart Holder  Jet Mount - Chart Holder  Mount to existing chart holders via a clamp. 
  • Lear
  • Hawker
  • Others using the chart holder by Madelec Aero
Universal  Jet Mount - Universal  Peel and stick VHB (Very High Bond) tape mount to smooth surfaces on yoke or panel. 
  • TBM
  • Pilatus
Boeing  Jet Mount- Boeing on the Checklist Plate  Mount to existing chart holders found in many Boeing aircraft.
  • Boeing
Gulfstream  Jet Mount - Gulfstream  Mount to wedge found on many control arms on Gulfstream aircraft.
  • Gulfstream
Amps Swivel  Jet Mount - AMPs Swivel  Mount to existing Amps pattern mounts previously used for EFBs.
  • Various
Glare Shield and Panel      
Flex Glare Shield  Sport Mount - Glare Shield  Mount to edge of glare shield.
  • Various
Flex Panel  Arm Mount  Mount directly to panel using instrument hole pattern. Arm allows additional positioning.
  • Various
Panel Flush  Flush Mount  Mount directly to panel using instrument hole pattern.
  • Various

Kneeboard Solutions. iPad kneeboards are for pilots that are ok with using a kneeboard and are or can get comfortable with viewing their iPad on their leg. iPad kneeboards need enough room to utilize the iPad on the knee or lap. Airplanes with side sticks (such as the Cessna TT or Cirrus), pilots that already use a kneeboard, and pilots that are not crowded around the controls will like iPad kneeboard solutions.

An iPad kneeboard is great for chart reading, flight planning/re-planning, plate briefing, avionics/POH manual look-up and more as it is close to you makng it easy to read and easy to operate the touch screen.

Kneeboards utilize a strap to secure the iPad to the leg. Merely placing the iPad on your lap will not work well in turbulence or when the iPad slides off and is now on the floor. Two solutions include:

  • iPad Kneeboard. A minimalist approach that fits on one leg to support just the iPad itself (iPad Sport). This is for airplanes with a very tight fit in the cockpit, airplanes with a control arm between the legs, and helicopters with cyclic, and for pilots that do not like a lap desk.
  • iPad Kneeboard/Lap Desk. A case that when opened forms a lap desk with the iPad and writing surface clipboard (iPad Kneeboard Folio C). This is for airplanes with room around the controls or for pilots that are not crowded around the yoke.
Category/Product ImageUseAircraft
Sport   For use as a kneeboard when space is tight – takes up the minimum amount of space. Also can be mounted. Many
Kneeboard/Lap Desk      
Folio C   For use as a kneeboard or lap desk. Includes pilot clipboard. Lid can fold under for use on a single leg. Genuine leather. iPad rotates. Many
Pro C  iPad Kneeboard Pro C with magnetic clipboard on outside For use as a kneeboard or lap desk. Includes pilot clipboard. Aircraft grade aluminum. Rugged. Many

How to choose a product?

We prefer those products that:

  • High quality - feel solid in our hands, durable and good looking
  • Allow the iPad to rotate easily between landscape and portrait modes to take advantage of the screen viewing area for certain charts
  • Fully protect the iPad both to and from the airplane
  • Can be used as an everyday case at home and at the office when not being used in-flight to avoid the inconvenience and cost of using more than one case
  • Do NOT require an STC

All MyGoFlight products meet the above criteria. 

Critical Accessories.

The critical accessories below assure that you are safe and ready to go in all stages of flight. Keeping the iPad in reach, secured, charged and visible will lead to less risky situations in the cokpit and assure that you are flying with the best possible configuration. 

Screen Viewing    
Anti-Glare Screen Protector Anti-Glare Screen Protector (iPad mini) Prevents glare from reducing the visibilty of the iPad durring critical stages of flight.
Screen Cleaner Kit Glass wax with microfiber cloth. Screen cleaning wax cleans and protects the screen while repelling dust particles.
RapidCharger - Wall RapidPower - Wall Complete charging kit for keeping your iPad charged in the cockpit, and before/after flight in the hangar.
DualMicro Charger DualMicro Charger Cigarette charger keeps the iPad power ready when needed. Supports 12-28v systems.
Portable Energy Station - 10000 mAh Provide 4-5 hours of extended life to your iPad Small compact form fits in your flight bag and provides quick, relaible power in emergency situations.
External GPS    
Bad Elf GPS Pro Bad Elf GPS Pro Connect simultaneously via Bluetooth to up to five iOs devices at the same time. A display screen that shows information regarding the aircraft's position, speed, altitude, battery life and accuracy. 12 hour battery life.
Bad Elf GPS Bad Elf GPS Plugs into the iPad itself it is one less device that needs to be charged or secured.
Dual GPS Dual GPS (XGPS150A) Bluetooth connectivity. Compatible with iOS and Android operating systems. 
 Flight Bag PLC Pro Flight Bag PLC Pro Specially designed, airport check-point friendly protective pouch to hold an iPad, laptop computer or many other electronic flight bag devices.All of the compartments are easy to see into, making it simple to find what you are looking for.
Flight Bag Slim EX Flight Bag PLC Slim EX Room for your charger, external GPS, screen cleaners and cloths, pens and paper. Custom styling, durable materials, and a unique protection system combine in a custom fitted form just for the iPad. 

Invest in quality. Invest in one case.

Invest in MyGoFlight.


Excerpt from FAA Advisory Circular 120-76B

4. Definitions. The following definitions are specific to this AC and may differ from those definitions contained in other published references.

c. Class 1 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) Hardware. [iPad is a Class 1 EFB] Portable commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based computers, considered to be portable electronic devices (PED) with no FAA design, production, or installation approval for the device and its internal components. Class 1 EFBs are not [permanently] mounted to the aircraft, connected to aircraft systems for data, or connected to a dedicated aircraft power supply. Class 1 EFBs can be temporarily connected to an existing aircraft power supply for battery recharging. Class 1 EFBs [iPad] that have Type B applications for aeronautical charts, approach charts, or an electronic checklist must be appropriately secured and viewable during critical phases of flight and must not interfere with flight control movement. [Type B applications include apps like ForeFlight, WingX, Garmin Pilot, iEFB, etc.]

(Portable Class 1 EFB components are not considered to be part of aircraft type design; i.e., not in the aircraft type certificate (TC) or Supplemental Type Certificate (STC).)

 [Bracketed words by MyGoFlight added for clarity]

To see FAA Advisory Circular 120-76B, click here.