Pilotscafe's IFR Quick Review Guide


The IFR quick review guide is a PDF I created a few years ago to help readers study for their Instrument checkrides and maintain IFR proficiency. Over the years it about doubled in size from the original 10 pages.

The guide condenses most of the knowledge required for an FAA Airplane-Instrument rating into a convenient short, yet comprehensive, collection.

Please remember that it is not a substitute for more in-depth material. Instead, treat it as a supplementary resource for study and review.

Feel free to share it with your friends. Any error corrections or feedback is appreciated and can be sent through Pilotscafe's contact page.

What's covered?

  • Logging instrument time
  • Recency of experience
  • Minimum aeronautical experience required for an IF rating
  • Documents required for flight
  • Maintenance inspection requirement
  • Decision-making models
  • Passenger & takeoff briefings
  • IFR flight plan requirements
  • Alternate requirements
  • Takeoff minimums
  • DPs and STARs
  • IFR clearance requirements
  • IFR altitudes
  • Flight instruments
  • Minimum equipment required for flight
  • Radio navigation instruments (VOR, NDB)
  • Understanding GPS, GNSS, PBN, RNP & RNAV
  • Components of ILS
  • Approach Light Systems
  • Attitude instrument flying techniques
  • Lost communication procedures
  • Holding patterns
  • Procedure turns
  • Descent planning
  • Basic VFR weather minimums in US airspace
  • Available weather products and services
  • Weather hazards
  • Aeromedical factors
  • Reference material
  • And much more!

Free Download


v2.1.6 (23 Nov 2020)

  • Cleaned up missing chars
  • Fixed typo

v2.1.5 (23 Nov 2020)

  • Changed the phrase for hold turn requirements to "Follow Flight Director bank angle" to "25º bank angle if using a Flight Director system" and added note: "*Whichever uses the least bank angle
  • Added Report to ATC at the holding fix.
  • Fixed overflowing text in rate of descent example.

v2.1.4 (12 Nov 2020)

  • Added info about localizer and glideslope modulated carrier signals (at 90 and 150 Hz)
  • Formatting improvements.

v2.1.3 (03 Nov 2020)

  • Fixed decoding of winds aloft example
  • IFR cruising altitudes graphic, added text: "or Flight Levels"
  • Minor formatting changes

v2.1.2 (02 Nov 2020)

  • Replaced 'WKRAFT' acronym, preflight info required for IFR, with 'NW KRAFT', which adds 'N' for Notams to the mnemonic.
  • New language for ELT battery replacement requirements.
  • Minor layout improvements

v2.1.1 (31 Oct 2020)

  • Fixed explanation of flying from high pressure area to low pressure area. Altimeter will indicate higher than desired, not lower as stated before, causing pilot to fly low.

v2.1.0 (30 Oct 2020)

  • Updated requirements for use of FFS, FTD or ATD for acquiring instrument aeronautical experience
  • Added definition table of LIFR, IFR, MVFR and VFR weather reports flight categories.
  • Added information about SVFR
  • Fixed language and contents of O2 requirements.
  • Added SCUBA diving with controlled ascent (wait 24 hours regardless of flight altitude).
  • Added reference to the download webpage so that readers can check for updates of the document.
  • Fixed language describing Inversion Illusion

v2.0.2 (29 Oct 2020)

  • Fixed several typos.

v2.0.1 (28 Oct 2020)

  • Fixed recency of experience section, FAR Part 61.57, requirements for completing recency of experience in a FFS, ATD, or FTD.

v2.0 (25 Oct 2020)

  • Complete redesign
  • Corrections and updates throughout the document.
  • Improved graphics
  • Whats new (highlights):
    • Using approved training devices for certification & recency of experience
    • Passenger and Takeoff briefings
    • Added information about pitot-static instruments
    • More information about RNP, PBN and RNAV
    • Attitude instrument flying concepts
    • Aeromedical subjects
    • Reference material
    • Terms and definitions

v1.4 (27 Jan 2011)

Last legacy version