2019 Gear of the Year at Sporty's

Top new products of 2019

A good backup radio can be worth its weight in gold, and the PJ2 is the only aviation radio that you can plug a standard aviation headset into without an adapter. It won first place this year for its innovative design and great price. In second place is Sporty's 2020 Learn to Fly Course, which combines online, iOS app, Android app, Apple TV app, and even Roku formats into one package - and guarantees you'll pass all three FAA tests. In third place is ForeFlight's new Sentry Mini ADS-B receiver, a tiny device that offers subscription-free in-flight weather for an incredible price.

PJ2 COM Radio

PJ2 Handheld COM Radio


Sporty's 2020 Learn to Fly CourseSporty's 2020 Learn to Fly Course


Sentry MiniSentry Mini ADS-B Receiver


Highest Demand ADS-B Out Avionics

This was the "year of the mandate." With the looming deadline for ADS-B installation, we saw a huge push to comply by the end of 2019. All ADS-B Out avionics were hot, but the top seller proved to be the easiest to install: the tailBeacon from uAvionix. In second and third places came two excellent 1090 MHz units from Appareo and Garmin.


uAvionix tailBeacon


Appareo Stratus ESGAppareo Stratus ESG


Garmin GTX 335Garmin GTX 335


Top Flight Bag

Flight bags are a personal choice, so this was a really close race. The Flight Gear HP iPad Bag was the top choice for its vertical storage design and ease of use. This was followed by the always-popular Flight Outfitters Lift Bag and the Flight Gear HP Tailwind Backpack, our most popular backpack.

Flight Gear iPad Bag

Flight Gear iPad Bag


Flight Outfitters Lift BagFlight Outfitters Lift Bag


Flight Gear BackpackFlight Gear HP Tailwind Backpack


Favorite aviation headset

We almost had an intra-office brawl when tallying the votes for this one. When the smoke cleared, the Bose A20 won by half a vote over the Lightspeed Zulu 3. In a surprising development, the Faro Stealth 2 Passive came in a solid third place.

Bose A20 Headset

Bose A20 Aviation Headset


Lightspeed Zulu 3Lightspeed Zulu 3 Headset


Faro Stealth 2 PassiveFaro Stealth 2 Passive Headset


Best Flashlight

Aviation-specific flashlights are a must. We get a good laugh every time a student attempts to preflight a plane with a cell phone for a light. The new, hands-free Flight Gear Headlamp has become the go-to light for most of our students. Headlamps are extremely popular, as the Flight Outfitters Dual Color Pilot's Headlamp came in second, with the new Smith & Wesson Captain's Flashlight right on its heels.

Flight Gear Headlamp

Flight Gear Headlamp


Flight Outfitters Dual Color Pilot's HeadlampFlight Outfitters Headlamp


Smith & Wesson FlashlightSmith & Wesson Captain's Flashlight


Best Flight Jacket

This one was simple to figure out: sit by the front door on a cold day and see what everyone was wearing. The Flight Outfitters Bush Pilot Jacket won by a big margin. We had some old-timers who still swear by the Classic A-2 Leather Bomber Jacket. In third place came the new Super Soft Airline Captain's Jacket, a favorite among pro pilots.

Flight Outfitters Bush Pilot Jacket

Flight Outfitters Bush Pilot Jacket

Classic Leather Bomber JacketClassic Leather Bomber Jacket


Super Soft Airline Captain's Leather JacketAirline Captain's Jacket






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