The Trouble with Gauges

Successful flying is much more than air speed…


One might argue that air speed is the most important factor in flying.  Not enough and you fall from the sky.  Too much, and your plane suffers catastrophic damage (and may fall from the sky).

I searched for at least three minutes (that’s a long time to be on a wild-Google-chase) to find an image of a simple cockpit instrument panel.  Notice anything?  Even this simple panel has a lot more than an air speed indicator.

In addition to air speed, the pilot can see engine rpm, oil temperature, water temperature, cylinder head temperature, fuel level, battery voltage, whether or not the plane is flying level, and the all-important altitude.

Successful flying is much more than air speed.  Otherwise, there’d only be one gauge.

Flying is much more than monitoring gauges.  Otherwise, what’s the point of windows?

Do you measure your life with one gauge, or a cluster of gauges?

Which gauge do you look at most?  Is it the right one?

Have you noticed where you’re heading, or are you too busy looking at your gauges?



Photo Credit: World of Aircraft Design


Author: Bob Dailey

Born and raised in Southern California. Graduated from (and met my future wife at) Cal Poly Pomona, in 1988. Married to Janet for almost 35 years. Father of two: Julianne and Jennifer. Grandfather of 7. Held many positions in small, medium, and large companies. Trail runner, competitive stair climber, backpacker, camper, off-roader, world traveler, sometimes writer.

2 thoughts on “The Trouble with Gauges”

  1. I use to focus on my financial number gauge to get to the point where I could retire early and live life on my terms. It was the one I put all my priority on. Since retiring I have focused on other gauges, passion, interests, hobbies, love, friendship, etc. The gauge cluster is rather full and I have realized that I missed many years that I could have lived a lot better had I opened my eyes to all of them rather than waiting to reach a target.

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