Flymaster Instruments – Declared Tasks and Competition Routes – Part B

Published: Richard Bungay 26/05/2020

Flymaster Instruments – Declared Tasks and Competition Routes – Part B

This article will help you define “Declared Tasks” and then show you how to enter these and also “Competition Routes” on the Flymaster SD-series instruments.

To enter a “declared task” or a “competition route” into your Flymaster instrument the first thing you need is a waypoint file containing the GPS coordinates for the task you wish to fly. For a “competition task” this is generally straight forward as the competition organisers will have provided a waypoint file for you to download and save to your instrument or may even have done this for you at registration. For an “XC style declared task” we showed you how to create the waypoint file in Part A of this article.

Now that you have a file containing the waypoints for the task you want to declare, you need to load the waypoints to the instrument. This can be done using either the Flymaster Designer application or GPSDump.

If you are using Flymaster Designer, open the application and connect your instrument, the instrument name logo should appear in the top right of the window, LIVE-SD in this example.

Click on the instrument name logo (LIVE-SD) and a drop down menu will appear, select the “Waypoints” option from this list. A waypoints window will appear, click on the “Import file” button and browse to the location of the waypoints file you wish to load and click “Open”, the list of waypoints will now appear in the window. Click the “select all” button (the waypoints will now be highlighted in blue) and then the “Send to Instrument button”, the waypoints are now sent to your Flymaster SD instrument.

If you are using GPSDump, you will need to open the GPSDump application and then from the “File” menu select the “Open wpts” option. A window will appear where you can browse to the waypoint file you wish to load. You may get a notification that the waypoint names will be changed to uppercase or truncated, just say “yes to all” to accept this change, GPSDump will only allow waypoint IDs to have 6 characters and all uppercase. If you wish to use the waypoint names you can edit the file before loading and add the names to the end of each line in a text editor such as Notepad:-


Skiddaw    N 54 38 43.20    W 003 08 43.47   879 Skiddaw

Castlerigg    N 54 36 15.80    W 003 05 59.34   206 Castlerigg

Blencathra    N 54 38 23.17    W 003 02 43.07   725 Blencathra

Skiddaw    N 54 38 43.20    W 003 08 43.47   879 Skiddaw

Once the waypoint file has loaded you will see the list of waypoints, select all the waypoints by clicking and dragging with the mouse, CTRL-A or choosing “Select All” in the “Edit” menu, the waypoints will now be highlighted in blue.

In the “Write Wpts” menu you will see 3 options for sending the selected waypoints to your Flymaster instrument, ID only, Name only or ID + Name. As mentioned above, the waypoint ID is limited to 6 characters so is not very useful (Note: this is why the FlyXC app names the waypoints as FCX001 etc) , so it is generally best to use the “Name Only” option if you added the names to the file previously.


Whichever application you used to send the waypoint file to your instrument, you will now have the waypoints saved on your Flymaster SD-series instrument and it is now time to programme the task. Depending on your instrument type the options available in the “Waypoints/Task” menu will differ slightly. The Flymaster GPS-SD and GPS-SD+ do not have Competition task features so you can only set a basic route. The NAV-SD and LIVE-SD support competition route features and you will have options for turnpoint “Type” , task times and the option to view the optimised route.

On your instrument, press the “Menu” key and select the “Waypoints/Task” option and then press “Enter”, you will now be presented with the list of waypoints in alphabetical order. You now need to create the task by adding the waypoints in the correct sequence (note: for a declared flight, OR or Triangle, the waypoints need to be in the correct order that you are going to fly them). For the example flight from Part A of this article the declared task was an FAI triangle from  Skiddaw to Castlerigg then Blencathra and return to Skiddaw.

On Flymaster instruments the first waypoint in the task is always defined as the Take Off and has no dimensions or time options available and the next route point is usually the task “Start”. For competition routes the Take Off and Start are usually different waypoints but for declared XC tasks it is often the same point. Historically, many pilots have messed up their declared route in their instrument by not adding both points to create the correct “C-record” declaration to be added to the flight and recorded in the IGC tracklog file. The latest Flymaster firmware will now add the Take Off point as the route start if there is no other “Start” defined in the task but it is always safest to add both points to your route every time.

Select the first waypoint for your task, SKIDDAW, from the waypoint list and hit “Enter” to add it as the Take Off.

Now select your “Start” waypoint from the list, SKIDDAW again in this example, and add it to your task. As this is the first route point in the task you now have the options to set the turnpoint type for the NAV-SD and LIVE-SD (Cylinder, Start in, Start out, ESndSpeedSection, Goal etc), the turnpoint radius and depending on the type you selected any time options. For the example here you will select “Start in/exit” as type, a radius of “400m”, leave the time blank “00:00” and the other options “Multiple” and “Increments” set at “0”.

Now you need to add the intermediate turnpoints to your task, in the example FAI triangle, Castlerigg and Blencathra are added to the route as type “Cylinder” both with a radius of “400m”. If you are entering a Competition route there are likely to be several more turnpoints to add each with it’s own radius as opposed to the standard 400m.

You now need to add the final turnpoints to your route, for a Competition route this will almost certainly have an ESS (End of Speed Section) as well as the Goal turnpoint. In the example we only have the Goal at Skiddaw and no ESS, so select SKIDDAW from the waypoint list and add it to the route. You will notice that you also need to set the radius to “400m” and if it was a competition Goal with a goal close time you would add this information as well, here you will leave it set to “00:00” as there are no time restrictions.

You should now have the complete task programed into your instrument. In the task list you should see the waypoints in the correct order, the “Start” turnpoint, the “Goal” turnpoint, an ESS if you added one, the length of each leg of the route and the total distance. There is also a “Checksum”, 35FE in this example, which you can verify with other pilots declaring the same task to ensure you have all entered the exact same information. The total distance shown on this screen is from waypoint to waypoint i.e. the centre of each turnpoint cylinder and not the optimised route to the edge of each cylinder.

If you now press the “Enter” key and select “Edit Task” and then the “View Task” option, this will take you to an overview map of the task if you have a NAV-SD or LIVE-SD instrument.

On this screen you should see the Task turnpoints numbered in the correct sequence for the order you wish to fly the task and the “Optimised” task distance from turnpoint cylinder rather than the centre.

You should now be ready to fly your chosen task. Don’t forget to calibrate your Altimeter before you fly, if you need to know how to do this check here.

To navigate the task you will want certain information fields showing on your instrument. Look out for the next article in the series that will cover Flymaster screen designs and custom layouts.