PDA

View Full Version : Getting Started Flying



Scoot25
02-18-2014, 06:28 PM
Here is an article I wrote to help put into perspective how get started

How to get a Pilotís License Ė First Steps
By: Scott Nelson


How to get a pilotís license is something many have the dream to do so they can soar in the clouds, but most never even look into what it would take to get started on their adventure. Here are some tips to get started on.

There are three things you need to consider.
They are:


Are you Eligible?
Getting a Medical Certificate
Finding a Flight School


Eligibility

So are you eligible? Being eligible means meeting three requirements (these are USA requirements).


First, you must be 17 years of age (16 for a hot air balloon/glider).
Second, you must be able to speak and read the English language (restrictions can be placed on your certificate to ensure safe operation and can be removed when you show your understanding is sufficient for safe operation).
Third you must hold a current, third class medical certificate.


Medical Certificate

Being medically certified simply means that you have been cleared by an Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). This generally means that you are physically fit enough and have no defects that would prevent you from being able to fly a craft safely. Finding an AME is your only burden here.


Finding a Flight School

There are in fact several different ways to earn your certificate such as joining the military, making friends with current pilot and learning from them, or finding a flight school.


Joining the military is a personal choice and no guarantee that you will receive flight training. Making friends with a pilot would have to do with your social skills, access to an airport/hangout area and a little luck to find one that would agree to that.


These are viable options but not for most, with that said I will focus a little on finding a proper school/instructor, a more Ďmainstreamí way to earn your certificate.


Several factors should be considered when choosing a school. You should look at their reputation, distance from your home, their facilities, and price. This checklist is a necessary hassle to choosing the right school. These areas should all be address as you progress down the path toward becoming a licensed pilot.


Conclusion

I hope this little guided tour has helped put into perspective some things on how to get your pilotís license. It should give you an idea of how to get started or a basic outline of what to do when you want to take that step. Flying a Plane can bring many great things!

Floatsflyer
02-18-2014, 07:48 PM
Scott, a few corrections to your tome:

There is no age restriction to learn to fly, to go on course. Age 17 only refers to minimum age to solo.

If you "make friends with a pilot", better be sure s/he is a certified flight instructor.

1600vw
02-19-2014, 06:50 AM
Scoot25:

Way not mention Sport Pilot? No medical needed, if you can drive a car you can fly an airplane, using this Sport Pilot Certificate. Telling people to "get a medical" is not doing aviation any favors. Also if things change this medical you speak of will only be required for the "Heavy Iron" airplanes. 6 passengers and under 6000 lbs you will use your driver license.

Tony

lnuss
02-19-2014, 09:37 AM
Scott, a few corrections to your tome:

There is no age restriction to learn to fly, to go on course. Age 17 only refers to minimum age to solo.

...
Actually, 16 to solo, 17 to get the license, for Private Airplane. You can actually solo gliders at 14. But you're right that there's no age restriction on learning, only on solo/license (excuse me, certificate :rollseyes: )

lnuss
02-19-2014, 09:58 AM
There are three things you need to consider.
They are:



Are you Eligible?
Getting a Medical Certificate
Finding a Flight School


Scott,

I'd add #4: Be sure you have the money to complete your training in a reasonable period of time, even if you have to finance it, since flying frequently (two to three times a week) normally takes less flight time, as well as calendar time, and as a result costs a lot less, and often (usually?) results in better retention of the learned material/skills over time.

I'd also add #5: Be sure you actually have the time available to take the training more than once every two or three weeks. You'll spend most of your training time doing review if you don't fly very often.

I'd also mention the options for glider, Recreational and Sport pilot tickets, as they are perfectly valid "learn to fly" options, either for their own sakes or as stepping stones to the Private and above.

In addition, I'd add that there's no actual requirement for a flight school, as there are free lance flight instructors, many with their own aircraft they'll use for training, though I'll grant that flight schools are easier to find, often more convenient and, sometimes, better quality training (sometimes the freelance is better, too -- I've known both good and bad).

I'd also second Floatsflyer in saying that "...making friends with current pilot and learning from them..." works only if that friend is a current CFI.

Floatsflyer
02-19-2014, 10:34 AM
Actually, 16 to solo, 17 to get the license, for Private Airplane. You can actually solo gliders at 14. But you're right that there's no age restriction on learning, only on solo/license (excuse me, certificate :rollseyes: )

Inuss, you are correct of course, thanks for correcting my correction. And you can say "license" to me, I'm Canadian.

lindaybuenrostro
02-25-2014, 07:36 AM
Scott, a few corrections to your tome:

There is no age restriction to learn to fly, to go on course. Age 17 only refers to minimum age to solo.

If you "make friends with a pilot", better be sure s/he is a certified flight instructor.
You are very right. There is no age limit if one really wants to fly. Oh, and I like the article Scott. I have some articles to if you want.

lindaybuenrostro
02-26-2014, 07:28 AM
I also want to share this

How do you get a pilot license


Whether you want to be an airline pilot or just want to fly recreational, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires that you are certified by a recognized authority. A valid pilotsí license, therefore, should be the aim of any serious aspiring pilot and there are a number of things you need to keep in mind as you go about acquiring the certification required. The type of license you need and the route you may need to take depends entirely on whether you want to become an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) or a recreational pilot. So any pilot-to-be will find it useful to have their final aim clear before they set out on the journey to become a pilot. The purpose of this article is to answer the question on a lot of young aspiring pilots:how do you get a pilot license?


Whatever your career destination is, one of the first things you must know is how to obtain a private pilot license. It is only after you receive a private pilotís license that you can begin climbing up the ladder of the myriad certifications and instrument ratings you need to fly a commercial aircraft and earn some money. Here are some of the steps involved:

In most flying schools, the first step to getting the coveted license is ground training where you learn the ins and outs of flying without actually getting in a plane. You need to pass an FAA-administered test with at least 70% to move on to the next stage.Then it is on to the actual flying. You need to clock at least forty hours of flying, twenty of which should be done with the instructor teaching before you move onto the next stage. In addition to these forty hours, you need to clock ten hours flying by yourself.To move on to the next stage, you need to complete four cross-country flights (i.e. flights that travel at least 100 nautical miles) and get through five hours of instructed flying at night.Then an FAA-certified examiner tests you on your knowledge asking you relevant questions and putting your abilities to the test.
If you pass that test, you are awarded a private pilotís license with the limitation that you only fly a single-engine aircraft for no compensation in good visibility only.

How much is Pilot License?

The private pilot licensing phase of your training should cost anywhere between $6,000 and $9,000 inclusive of the ground training. There may be cheaper alternatives but it is important to check whether they are appropriately licensed. It would be extremely unfortunate if your efforts to become a private pilot are delayed or even completely spoilt because you enrolled in a flight school that was not recognized by the FAA. It is also important to keep in mind that the amount you shell out for flight training can be eventually recouped when you land a decent flying job. It is definitely quite an investment but a worthwhile one.

1600vw
02-27-2014, 07:14 AM
I also want to share this

How do you get a pilot license


Whether you want to be an airline pilot or just want to fly recreational, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires that you are certified by a recognized authority. A valid pilots’ license, therefore, should be the aim of any serious aspiring pilot and there are a number of things you need to keep in mind as you go about acquiring the certification required. The type of license you need and the route you may need to take depends entirely on whether you want to become an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) or a recreational pilot. So any pilot-to-be will find it useful to have their final aim clear before they set out on the journey to become a pilot. The purpose of this article is to answer the question on a lot of young aspiring pilots:how do you get a pilot license?


Whatever your career destination is, one of the first things you must know is how to obtain a private pilot license. It is only after you receive a private pilot’s license that you can begin climbing up the ladder of the myriad certifications and instrument ratings you need to fly a commercial aircraft and earn some money. Here are some of the steps involved:

In most flying schools, the first step to getting the coveted license is ground training where you learn the ins and outs of flying without actually getting in a plane. You need to pass an FAA-administered test with at least 70% to move on to the next stage.Then it is on to the actual flying. You need to clock at least forty hours of flying, twenty of which should be done with the instructor teaching before you move onto the next stage. In addition to these forty hours, you need to clock ten hours flying by yourself.To move on to the next stage, you need to complete four cross-country flights (i.e. flights that travel at least 100 nautical miles) and get through five hours of instructed flying at night.Then an FAA-certified examiner tests you on your knowledge asking you relevant questions and putting your abilities to the test.
If you pass that test, you are awarded a private pilot’s license with the limitation that you only fly a single-engine aircraft for no compensation in good visibility only.

How much is Pilot License?

The private pilot licensing phase of your training should cost anywhere between $6,000 and $9,000 inclusive of the ground training. There may be cheaper alternatives but it is important to check whether they are appropriately licensed. It would be extremely unfortunate if your efforts to become a private pilot are delayed or even completely spoilt because you enrolled in a flight school that was not recognized by the FAA. It is also important to keep in mind that the amount you shell out for flight training can be eventually recouped when you land a decent flying job. It is definitely quite an investment but a worthwhile one.

I see from this post you are one of those who does not even recognize the Sport Pilot program and all flying is done for a career. This is the EAA forum not Pilots Of America. Why not start with a Sport Pilot Certificate and work your way up. Why eat the hole pie in one bite. When you do this you taste nothing. Take small bites and enjoy every min of it.

This keeps the pilots in the schools and the schools stay busy. Not just with new students but with those pilots moving up. I found this with my own flying. I started with an Ultralight, went on to Sport Pilot and if things change with some of the rules I will go PP. All to fly for recreation on sunny nice days.

To mention it cost thousands of dollars to get into aviation also shuts the door right in a lot of peoples faces. Why not say, start from the beginning. Take baby steps and you can get started for a few hundred dollars. Again don't shove the bill in someones face before they even sat down to eat. No one would eat out if you had to pay for everything on the menu when all you want is fries and a shake.

Small Bites.......

Tony

lnuss
02-27-2014, 07:51 AM
Be careful how you phrase things. You may not have intended some of your remarks the way they came across to me (and probably others, too):


It would be extremely unfortunate if your efforts to become a private pilot are delayed or even completely spoilt because you enrolled in a flight school that was not recognized by the FAA.

The above, along with much of the rest of the post, make it sound as if you need a Part 141 flight school. That is far from the case. You don't even need a flight school -- a free-lance instructor will do. And, as Tony says, going for Sport Pilot or Recreational Pilot is a perfectly legitimate way to start flying, even if you plan to become a professional pilot at some point.


In most flying schools, the first step to getting the coveted license is ground training where you learn the ins and outs of flying without actually getting in a plane. You need to pass an FAA-administered test with at least 70% to move on to the next stage.Then it is on to the actual flying.

You make it sound as if you must pass the written test before you can start the actual flight training. Again, this is not the case. Depending on the individual and the situation, this may or may not be the best way to go, but a lot of stuff required for the written is easier to understand if you've experienced it. And the flight schools where I taught didn't make you take the written first, or do the ground school first.


Whether you want to be an airline pilot or just want to fly recreational, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires that you are certified by a recognized authority.

That "recognized authority" is a CFI (or Sport Instructor), if you are talking about the training itself. It is (in the U.S.) the FAA that does the actual certification (disregarding military, foreign, etc. which are special situations).

jedi
03-13-2014, 12:43 AM
.........It would be extremely unfortunate if your efforts to become a private pilot are delayed or even completely spoilt because you enrolled in a flight school that was not recognized by the FAA. .........

Not many schools that do not have the required certificates. There are however some schools that encourage you to pay a large sum of $$ in advance then go out of business. If you purchase block time or pay in advance, be very cautious in the background and financial condition of the school. Silver State took thousands of students flying money and ran with it, and it was thousands of $$ per student. Sucks big time!!

Bill Greenwood
03-13-2014, 06:26 AM
Tony, don't be so sensitive about this sport vs. private thing. I'm glad you or anyone is flying in any way, but for many people sport is not all they want. If sport gets some people started that might not have otherwise, that's great, but another way of looking at it is that many people may not want to decide to only go part way at the start. I was reading a summary of LSA planes in Av Consumer and the head of a major flight school said that 70 % of his students that began as a sport pilot path later went on the be private pilot.
If I am correct sport pilot only leaves out instrument and night. I do think sport requires less,maybe a lot less hours. But what if you want to fly many airplanes you need to be private at least. If you look at Oshkosh how many of the planes there are soley LSA?
If I was a CFI and had a student that had just gotten his sport pilot, I'd beg him to get an hour or two of inst practice. You may not always fly on a perfectly CAVU day, and if you want to fly cross country say to EAA, it helps to have the inst navigation knowledge. If the pane is equiped with basic ifr instruments, which means above all an attitude indicator ( artififcial horizon) and some type of vor or gps, then I would sneak in a little ifr training as part of the sport pilot training. I am not a CFI, (about half way there) but I think I could do that. I could have the student put on a hood when flying to or from the practice area for instance. Now learning a full instrument rating is not easy, and no one should be overconfident after an hour or two of practice, but once given the basics by the CFI which is flying by reference to the att indicator, the student can have that in mind and use it when he flies even vmc, and he can certainly add and use some form of instrument navigation im addition to pilotage and ded reckoning ( NOT IN PLACE OF).

As I understand it, the best of both worlds may be to take your lessons, even for sport pilot from a full CFI so that if and when you want to add on the private, that the 20 plus hours and what is learned in them will count toward the private. If the student is lucky enough to find a Cub or Champ to start in, it is both a plane for sport and private, best of both worlds. Obviously, as many students may and do run short of money, being a 25 hour fully certificated sport pilot may be better than being half or 2/3 of a private pilot, but only if you are going to quit your training once and for all right there and never go farther.

And let's say a student flys a simple plane, doesn't have, need, or want a medical, but he has an open and curious mind, as well as some money. There is absolutely nothing( short of stubborness or lack of money) that prevents him from going to take a glider lesson or an acro or instrument lesson. I think aviation is best done as a lifelong learning process with the only limits being time and money. Tell you what, if you come to Boulder, and buy the gas, I'll give you a session of inst practice under the hood in my Bonanza, and I'll bet in a half hour you can fly soley on the att ind. And we won't tell anyone so you can keep your mantra of ("only sport pilots and not one iota past there").

I would almost never pay for my full training up front, unless I was certain I was going to do my lessons full time non stop AND the school offered a Big discount with a written contract. Too many FBOs or flight schools are on shaky financial grounds and may and do close overnight and leave with the student's money. The student may sue and even win a judgement ,but if there are no assets the judgement is not worth anything.
I don't think a reputable school would ask you to pay all up front, if they do it is likely a sign that they are in trouble and in debt and living day to day cash wise.
And by the way, even if you are a sport pilot, nothing prevents you from learning more, or taking a lesson for inst flying, even in a simulator which can be cheaper than a plane, ( ie $25 hour).