Copyright © 2016  Grand Rapids Technologies, Inc.

Electronic Flight Instrumentation for Experimental Aircraft Since 1991

Creating & Using Checklists

For convenience, you can create and store your own checklists in any GRT EFIS. You can pull the checklist up on screen at any time. An even cooler feature is the ability to add real-time data to the checklist to minimize pilot workload. The HXr takes checklists to a new level of utility by displaying them inside an Inset window, leaving the rest of the screen unchanged.

What does it look like?

On GRT Sport and Horizon WS/HS/HX screens, the checklist appears on a full-screen black background. It is accessed through the Map pages. Similar to the Flight Plan screen, its original intention was to be used only on the secondary display unit. However, you can use it on any display unit if you don’t mind missing the flight instruments for a bit.

The HXr offers an advantage over the older models by placing the checklist inside an inset window (shown above). The window is transparent, allowing synthetic vision terrain to slide by underneath. A suite of softkeys appears under the checklist enabling you to acknowledge tasks, scroll through the list, start over with the same list, or view a new one.

How do I create a checklist?

The Checklist file is a simple .txt file named CHECKLIST.TXT. Using a PC computer, create your checklist using the Notepad program. The file must be named CHECKLIST.TXT and saved in the root directory of the USB stick (NOT inside a folder) so the EFIS will recognize it.

The EFIS separates the checklists in the single TXT file into multiple lists. All of your checklists will need to be written in this one file. The prefix “list” tells the EFIS to begin a separate checklist, and the prefix “item” tells the EFIS to make a new line within the list.  The format is displayed in the left column below:


item ITEM

item ITEM

item ITEM


item ITEM

item ITEM

item ITEM

The finished checklist as viewed on the EFIS will look like this:





And… RUN-UP will be a separate list.  Note that there is a space between the prefixes “list” or “item” and the list/item name.  

Now for the cool part. There is a long list of parameters and their corresponding codes on page 3-10 of the Horizon WS/HS/HX User Manual. If you add one of these codes to the end of a line in your checklist, the EFIS will display the real-time value.

Example: If you type item CARB HEAT - %19% as one of the lines in your list, it will display like this:

CARB HEAT - 40  (or whatever the real-time carb temperature is.)

Which is pretty neat if you have a carb temperature probe and want to look at your actual carburetor temperature right on the checklist during your run-up. The suffix %19% is the code for displaying carb temperature in this example. You can choose to display most engine parameters, EIS Auxiliaries, airspeeds, altitudes, density altitudes, autopilot status, baro settings, waypoint information… all sorts of things you might want to see at a glance as you run through your checklists. On single-screen systems, this makes using the electronic checklist practical because you won’t have to switch between the checklist page and the engine page or PFD as you run through the list.  It’s a very extensive list that will spark your checklist-writing imagination as soon as you see it.

How to Load the Checklists into any EFIS except HXr

  1. When all of your checklists are written in the format described above, save your CHECKLIST.TXT file onto the USB thumb drive. (Root directory!) Insert the thumb drive into the display unit and turn the system on.
  2. Go to the MAP pages and press NEXT until you see the CHECKLIST softkey. Press it.
  3. Press SELECT LIST softkey, then IMPORT. This will prompt the system to look for CHECKLIST.TXT file on your USB drive. If it finds the file, it will ask you if you want to overwrite any existing CHECKLIST.TXT file already loaded into the EFIS. Press YES.
  4. The checklist file will load into internal memory. This means you can use it even if the USB stick is not installed in the display unit.

How to Use the Checklist (any EFIS except Hxr)

  1. Go to the MAP pages and press NEXT until you see the CHECKLIST softkey. Press it. This will display the last-used checklist, so if you only use one, it will always be here.
  2. To use a different checklist, press SELECT LIST softkey, then use the right knob or UP/DOWN softkeys to highlight the checklist title you want. Then press LOAD to display it.
  3. Press UP and DOWN softkeys or turn the knob to highlight each operation as you perform it.

How to Load Checklists into HXr

  1. Save your CHECKLIST.TXT file onto the USB thumb drive. (Root directory!) Insert the thumb drive into the display unit and turn the system on if it’s not already on.
  2. Go to SET MENU, Display Unit Maintenance. Near the top of the screen you will see Checklists. Highlight this and press the knob.
  3. This screen gives you choices for Importing your checklist from the USB stick or Exporting the previously loaded file back onto the USB stick. Highlight Import line, press knob and answer YES to import the file and overwrite any existing Checklist.txt file saved in the display unit. A list of loaded checklists appears on the screen. Press SAVE to save changes.

How to Use the Checklist on HXr

  1. From the PFD or MAP HOME Screen, under the Inset window you wish to display the checklist in, press INSET>ENG STAT>CHECKLIST.
  2. Press the arrow softkeys to highlight the checklist you want to view. Press LOAD to display it.
  3. The softkeys do the following:
  4. CLEAR: Clears all the check boxes and moves cursor to the top line.
  5. DEFER: Skips an item on the checklist
  6. ACCEPT: Places a green check mark in the box next to the highlighted item to signify that YES, you verified/performed the task.
  7. HOME displays the HOME softkeys. The checklist will stay visible in the Inset window, but will not be immediately accessible. Press INSET>USE to bring up the Checklist control softkeys again.
  8. The UP ARROW moves the cursor up one line at a time.
  9. LISTS displays the checklist selection list. Use the arrows to select a different checklist and LOAD to display it.

HXr’s INSET arrangement offers a great new way to enjoy this feature, which has been around for many years. It makes the checklist much more user-friendly and easier to access. The ability to display the real-time data right there on each line item alleviates some fatigue and makes your scan a little bit easier.





list RUN-UP

item THROTTLE- 1800



Following this format, you would type: