A good read for light airplane pilots.


I don’t want to make a spam post because I have no affiliation with this book other than I’m reading it. I found it at a used book store. It’s called the Aicraft Engine Operating Guide" by Kas Thomas It was written in 81 so for those flying the newer stuff some info might or might not apply.

It discusses the engine itself, but also how the engine instruments work. It also goes into detail about each phase of flight.
It’s a good read for those who fly light airplanes and have not gone into more advanced flying, or have a background in aviation mechanics.

It looks like it is a book that a few libraries carry. The price on a used copy is pretty steep like 50$ at Amazon. I found mine by chance in MN for 2$.


That author also wrote “Fly the Engine” which, in my humble opinion, was brilliant and should be required reading for all pilots of piston engine aircraft. Helps you think like an airman.


I would completely agree if it’s anything like this book! The engine instrument chapter was an eye opener. We learn how and why and what errors to expect from our flight instruments but we’re not really taught the inner workings of the engine instruments; how an EGT works, how the oil pressure gauge works etc, and then explains what limitations it has because of design,
I’m going to be on the lookout for the book you mentioned as well. Like you say “helps you think like and airman”.


This thread makes me realize how much I take for granted my A&P training as a pilot. I just figured we all knew the what & whys.


What scares me is what I don’t know that maybe I should know!


The things that are taught in basic flight training and ground schools don’t really cover these topics. I’m sure most pursue more knowledge but there are those I’m sure who don’t care to.

It seems in most flight training ciriculums you’re taught how the engine works, and the control systems, as well as the instruments but the in depth things like where the oil pressure gauge gets its flow to display a reading isn’t common info taught.
Like Victorjuliet said, this is stuff that should be required reading!


Careful, if you learn too much, you may not want to fly any more. :wink:

When I was training for my private, I stopped using a certain school’s planes after I went into the hangar and saw one of their 152’s with it’s cowling off.