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Subject: TRUE NORTH!!!!!
From: (n4si)
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 05:10:17 +0000
> Guys, discuss this as much as you wish, but PLEASE, the correct word is 
> DECLINATION. If the DEVIATION is WEST, you ADD it to the compass indication. 
> If it is EAST,
> SUBSTRACT it from the compass indication.

Sorry Ed. The correct word is variation. Deviation, as I said in my 
original answer, is that effect on the compass by the surrounding 
objects, such as dashboard, hull, engine parts, etc. To get a 
magnetic heading both deviation and variation must be considered, but 
the term for the difference between magnetic north and true north is 

> Call the nearest Flight Control center and ask them for the
> DEVIATION in the area....home free 

If you mean Air Route Traffic Control Center, there are only 20 in
the U.S. Not only that, but the type of charts, services, and
facilities (IFR) that we (I am one) have do not include variation
information. It happens that variation affects all the stuff we do,
however, we just don't usually have that information readily at hand.

If you mean Flight Service Station, there aren't many of those left, 
either, after the consolidation of the '80s. Moreover, the area they 
cover is so large that variation differences of 20 degrees or more 
may exist in their particular facility. They do, however, deal with 
VFR charting, which does have the information, and they might be able 
to provide it to you. Your taxes at work, by the way.

But for most people, the FBO (fixed base operator) at the local
airport invariably has a flight school; it's one of the ways they
stay in business. Any instructor at the flight school can tell you
the variation for the area. If the airport has a tower, they should
be able to provide it for you, as well.

You can also probably buy a chart (called a "sectional") from them
for the area; not a bad idea, since there are meridians and
parallels displayed, some rough elevation information, not to
mention the variation.

> Best 
> Ed

73, Rod N4SI
    The DXer formerly known as N9AKE
         (c) 5 November, 1996

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