Farnsworth Lantern Test

135fr8r

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For those of you familiar with the FALANT test, I have a couple questions for you. First, does anyone know the stats regarding pass/fail rate? Some one told me basically if you can read a traffic light, you can pass this test, but I really can't see it being that easy. Second, if anyone can describe anything about this test, or give your experiences, thoughts, etc.., that would be great. I have known I have have a deficiency in the past, but my Doctor apparently didn't feel it was of great concern. I visited a new Doctor this past medical, and he busted me on it. Any help is appreciated.

Thanks in advance
 

polysciguy9

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I've never taken the FALANT, but I've been looking into it since I have a color vision waiver (from taking the light gun test) but would like to pass an alternative test to have the waiver removed. I've heard that the FAA has its doubts about the FALANT, so it's not guaranteed that it'll be an approved substitute test forever. Apparently the F/O who was at the controls of the FedEx 727 that crashed in Tallahassee a few years back had a severe case of colorblindness, but was still able to pass the FALANT to become a naval aviator (and subsequently, fly for FedEx).

FALANT's are pretty rare - not too many eye docs have them. I would recommend checking with either a school of optometry, or a military base, as you will not likely find a doctor that has the FALANT or any of the other alternative tests for that matter. I know Ohio State has one. You might also look into the Dvorine colorvision test. AOPA told me that guys who fail the standard Ischira plates, can often pass the Dvorine test which the FAA allows as a substitute.

Hope this helps some, although I didn't answer your question really.
 

Gandolf

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A few years ago, I was given the same advice by AOPA about the Farnsworth Lantern test- if you can't pass this, forget about it. Since I had a pre-employment physical coming up, I did a lot of calling around, including the Mayo Clinic, to find an opthamologist that gave this test. I might as well have been looking for new wheels for my stagecoach. Apparently, this test was commonplace in the military about 40 years ago, but at least twenty different eye docs I called had never heard of it. I don't know whether it requires special equipment or something (BTW, the plates for some of the color tests can cost more than $500), but you will be very lucky if you can find someone to administer this test. Good luck!
 

DairyAir

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Hey polysci guy, Taking a light guntest is not a waiver or a soda for that matter. I had to take the gun test because I could not pass the ishihara dot test. The FAA inpector who administered the test told me this. It is not a waiver or SODA, statement of demonstrated ability, but an approved test for color vision. They gave me a letter to give to my AME stating that I have passed the color vision requirements for a first class medical end of story. It is not in your record with the FAA or with your AME. My medical has no waivers or SODA's attached. The light gun test is an approved method for determinig a pilots ability to see color. The farnsworth lantern test is very easy as well. I took one of those at the old Pan Am medical dept. in Miami when they were still in business. Where did you find one cause I have been looking for years with no luck. Anyway good luck on your test.


P.S. The light gun test must be administered by the FAA and you only get one chance to pass it. My advice go to the tower where they will do it and call the ground controller and practice to make sure you will pass.
 

polysciguy9

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DairyAir said:
Hey polysci guy, Taking a light guntest is not a waiver or a soda for that matter. I had to take the gun test because I could not pass the ishihara dot test. The FAA inpector who administered the test told me this. It is not a waiver or SODA, statement of demonstrated ability, but an approved test for color vision.
That's interesting ... I took the signal light gun test back in 1997 when I first began training and they issued me a SODA. I actually still have it and used it when I got my last medical... says "Statement of Demonstrated Ability" on it and everything. I wonder if the rules or standards have changed since then. Interestingly enough, when I called the FAA last year to see if I could get a copy of my SODA sent to me (since mine is falling apart) they said they had no record of my having a SODA. Interesting - I'll definitely check it out. Thanks for the heads up!
 

Wang Chung

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I was basically in your situation about 4 months ago - a bit alarming to say the least. I was referred to the docs at aviationmedicine.com and they guided me thru the process to get a Letter of Evidence that I could pass one or more of the FAA-approved alternate color vision tests. There are about 7 or 8 acceptable color vision tests, and the FALANT is one of them. The others are mostly booklets of plates, but each one is a bit different and even though you might fail one, you may pass a different one. If you can pass any of these tests, you can get a 'Letter of Evidence' that you can show to your AME when you go in for a medical - it is proof that you meet color vision standards and you don't need to pass the AME's color vision test to get an unrestricted medical (assuming everything else checks out OK). The light gun test should be a last resort - "Plan A" should be to try and pass some of the approved tests with an eye doc.

The difficult part is finding somebody that can administer some of the alternate tests - it's often tough to find. I was referred to Dr. Monaco in Wilmington, DE who is an aviation vision expert and who has access to all the tests. After I passed a few of them, some paperwork was generated between Dr. Monaco and Dr. Snyder at Aviationmedicine.com, and within about one month I had the LOE in hand.

It cost me some $$, but the situation was resolved quickly by the experts. With 4000 hours and several types, you are past V1 in your career and it might be best to bite the bullet, spend the cash and/or go to the trouble of travelling to a place where you can do some alternate tests and get the paperwork done right. Just IMHO. Feel free to PM me for the details of the process I went thru.

Check these out:

www.aviationmedicine.com/colorvision.htm

www.flightsight.com is Dr. Monaco's site
 

DC8 Flyer

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Wang Chung said:
I was basically in your situation about 4 months ago - a bit alarming to say the least. I was referred to the docs at aviationmedicine.com and they guided me thru the process to get a Letter of Evidence that I could pass one or more of the FAA-approved alternate color vision tests. There are about 7 or 8 acceptable color vision tests, and the FALANT is one of them. The others are mostly booklets of plates, but each one is a bit different and even though you might fail one, you may pass a different one. If you can pass any of these tests, you can get a 'Letter of Evidence' that you can show to your AME when you go in for a medical - it is proof that you meet color vision standards and you don't need to pass the AME's color vision test to get an unrestricted medical (assuming everything else checks out OK). The light gun test should be a last resort - "Plan A" should be to try and pass some of the approved tests with an eye doc.

The difficult part is finding somebody that can administer some of the alternate tests - it's often tough to find. I was referred to Dr. Monaco in Wilmington, DE who is an aviation vision expert and who has access to all the tests. After I passed a few of them, some paperwork was generated between Dr. Monaco and Dr. Snyder at Aviationmedicine.com, and within about one month I had the LOE in hand.

It cost me some $$, but the situation was resolved quickly by the experts. With 4000 hours and several types, you are past V1 in your career and it might be best to bite the bullet, spend the cash and/or go to the trouble of travelling to a place where you can do some alternate tests and get the paperwork done right. Just IMHO. Feel free to PM me for the details of the process I went thru.

Check these out:

www.aviationmedicine.com/colorvision.htm

www.flightsight.com is Dr. Monaco's site
Dont believe those quacks at aviationmedicine.com. They state on their site that someone with a colorblindness SODA will have a very hard time being hired as an airline pilot. Complete bupkiss! I have a SODA from doing a light gun test and have held 2 121 jobs and told both places prior to being interviewed about the SODA (even though you dont have to). If you can pass the light gun test take the SODA laminate the thing and never look back.
 

polysciguy9

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Laminate is the key ... mine is falling apart ... I feel like Nicholas Cage handling the Declaration of Independence in National Treasure each time I pull my SODA out.
 

Wang Chung

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DC8 Flyer said:
have held 2 121 jobs and told both places prior to being interviewed about the SODA (even though you dont have to). If you can pass the light gun test take the SODA laminate the thing and never look back.
I know that people get hired with color vision SODAs, not a big deal as some make it out to be.

But for a guy whose color vision is in question, which is the better choice? A one-shot attempt at a SODA at the local airfield under possibly less than optimal conditions, with a Fed moderating the event.....or sitting in an office with an eye expert who can administer multiple "FAA acceptable" tests, under carefully controlled conditions, in a non-Fed situation.
 

polysciguy9

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I actually took the signal light gun test twice ... the first day's conditions weren't great for it - The sun wasn't far from the tower and I had trouble differentiating the white and green because of it. The second time I took it, I had no problem. Of course when I did this back in 1997, I didn't know about the alternate tests. Could have really shot myself in the foot had I not passed the second time.
 

DC8 Flyer

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Wang Chung said:
I know that people get hired with color vision SODAs, not a big deal as some make it out to be.

But for a guy whose color vision is in question, which is the better choice? A one-shot attempt at a SODA at the local airfield under possibly less than optimal conditions, with a Fed moderating the event.....or sitting in an office with an eye expert who can administer multiple "FAA acceptable" tests, under carefully controlled conditions, in a non-Fed situation.

I totally agree with the light gun being less than optimal, I didn't mean to come off like I did. The whole color vision thing is a sore subject for me, since as most people who are red/green color blind know, its not red and green we cant see its shades of brown between red and green. The whole limitation thing with red/green color blindness is bogus. Then places like that aviationmedicine.com prey on that and CHARGE a lot of money for something the AMEs should be doing anyway.

Sorry for the rant, good point about the light gun test though, lots of practice at the tower you are going to do it at definately.
 

BluDevAv8r

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I did my FALANT test at the NY School of Optometry in NYC. Best thing I ever did...

-Neal
 

135fr8r

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 135fr8r
Farnsworth Lantern Test


is no longer a valid FAA color vision test.


Actually it's the Farnsworth D-15 that is no longer accepted. Totally different test.
 

some_dude

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For years, I was able to barely scrape by the standard color vision plates. Finally, one year I was one plate short and the new AME I was using called me on it.

I tried the FALANT test at a school of optometry nearby. I didn't find it easy at all, although the professor who gave me the test said that was an indication that I had a color vision deficiency (duh!). He told me that with normal color vision, it should be a snap.

I did the light gun test from the tower, no problems. Now that one was easy. And now I have a SODA.

The worst part about the whole thing was having to wait about a month to get the FAA to sign off on giving me the light gun test. Once I took the test, I had the SODA the next day.
 
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