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chuckiec
08-09-2015, 02:53 PM
I want to post this in the hopes that others will see what Iíve done and not be discouraged in pursuing sport pilot training.

So at the tender age of 55 I decided to fulfill a lifelong dream of learning to fly. Back when the sport pilot cert came out I thought that would be the ideal way to go. Early on of course there weren't many planes available to train in. As that changed of course life got in the way but now I was ready. The first thing I did was buy the Gleim sport pilot kit. I wanted to see what I was getting into and this would be needed anyway. Unfortunately, the reality was that despite living in an aviation rich environment, there was only one flight school that offered sport pilot training. Conveniently it was about 2 blocks from my house so normally this would be an ideal situation. However, their apparently once mighty fleet of LSAs had now dwindled down to a single Cessna Skycatcher. I was politely told I was too heavy (then 260#) for that plane. I'd have to lose at least 25# to have a reasonable shot at training in it. Of course I was told to consider private pilot, it's just twice the hours and costs. It didn't make sense to me since I knew most of my flying will be by myself and I'm just looking to fly for fun and maybe short trips. So while the dieting began in earnest, I started to look around for alternatives. I was willing to travel a short distance for training. I also looked for a private instructor who maybe had a plane I could train in. I live on Long Island and I found 3 schools in CT that would be about a 1 hour drive and 1+ hour ferry ride. Of the three schools I found, one no longer offered it, the second had a 210# weight limit (that would take a Bobby Sands diet to reach) but the 3rd did have a Remos and a 250# limit. It would be an expensive proposition since the Remos was more expensive to rent and the ferry ride alone was $30 each way (if I took my motorcycle). I could find nothing in NJ (not that they don't exist, I just couldn't find them). I joined EAA and contacted the local chapter president to see if he knew of anyone. He made inquiries but no luck. I did get much very valuable information from him though.

After much thought it occurred to me that I might be better off just getting my own LSA. After all, the Skycatcher was the only plane for rent within 2 hours of where I lived. Having my own plane might make it easier to find an instructor and then I'd be able to fly when I wanted. Much research went into the fixed cost of operating my own plane as well as what models might suit my needs. It became clear that unless I wanted a 1940's era plane like an Ercoupe, I was going to have to get an E-LSA. The S-LSAs were just too pricey for me. And of course the plane would have to have a useful load North of 500#.

So I scoured the Internet, sites like Barnstormers, Trade-a-plane and others. Looked at what was available and researched those models. Sadly, most of the planes that might be of interest were located on the other side of the country. The cost of going there to look at the plane and then have it ferried back were just prohibitive. I finally zeroed in on a model, the Zenith CH601. It was by all accounts an easy plane to fly, had a good useful load and most were in my price range. The engines used in the planes I saw varied from Lycomings to Corvair. I wanted to find one with a Rotax engine because I knew them to be reliable, easy and relatively inexpensive to service. Other things I looked for was a radio, mode c transponder(my intent is to get the class B, C and D airspace endorsement) and anything else was gravy. I located 2 possible candidates, one in PA and one in NJ. The PA one was pending sale but the NJ plane was up for grabs. My mom happens to live about 45 minutes from where the plane was based so on a weekend visit I took some time to go have a look at the plane.

The seller arranged to have a CFI take me up in the plane. We actually had an extensive ground lesson (he explained the plane to me in detail; we did a pre-flight inspection and an extensive w/b). It was good to see that with the 150# instructor, me now at 250# and 18 gallons of fuel we were still under max weight. It was a hot, humid day and the density altitude was around 1800' but we stilled climbed out at 500 fpm. The instructor demonstrated the nimble qualities of the plane and let me take the controls doing some shallow and steep turns, climbs descents and straight and level (well as best as I could with getting bumped around with the thermals). He also guided me through the landing. Well, I was sold on the plane. I made the seller an offer and he accepted. Now just to get insurance and financing. The first thing I learned was don't try to buy an airplane during AirVenture week (unless perhaps you're at AirVenture). As a student pilot trying to get insurance for your own plane is difficult and expensive. As an AOPA member, I decided to go through them for financing. That was a mistake. We weren't talking big money here but they have a one size fits all approach and it quickly became apparent that getting financing on and E-LSA was going to be more difficult than it should be. After submitting all kinds of paperwork, a week later the bank could still not tell me if it would give me the money I was asking for because they needed to determine what they thought the plane was worth. So I went online and in 2 hours got approved for a personal loan for the amount I needed at 1.5% less than what the bank was offering and no closing costs. While I was waiting for all of this I made sure the flight school would train me in my own plane. They had to negotiate a bit with the insurance company but got them to allow the CFI to train me after he has 5 solo hours in my plane. I also had to arrange a pre-buy inspection. The A&P I chose was familiar with both the aircraft and the engine. He gave me a very thorough walk through of both the airframe and the Rotax 912. Not that Iím going to do it myself anytime soon, he explained how to change the oil and how to burp the engine before checking the oil.
Ok, so insurance, financing and CFI lined up, now I just needed to arrange delivery. The seller was very good and willing to fly the plane to its new home base (HWV) at his expense. So while he was making those arrangements, I bought the accessories I needed. It was going to be tied down outside so I needed tie downs, canopy cover, wheel chocks, a headset(not included in the sale), etc. Got all that done and the seller called me with a delivery date. Two days later I was off to the airport to rent my tie down and wait for the plane. It arrived on time with a Bonanza following behind to fly the seller and his pilot back home. I tied the plane down, took care of the paperwork with the seller and it was finally mine.

Now the fun begins. Monday I go to the local FSDO to get my student certificate. I also need to have the schools mechanic give an OK on the plane and then the CFI will start flying off his 5 hours. Finally, I will be able to start my lessons.

I will update this periodically regarding my progress.

Mike A
08-09-2015, 07:30 PM
Thanks Chuck. looking forward to following your progress.

(I'm also a Sport Pilot wanna be :))

rtk
08-09-2015, 08:54 PM
Congratulations Chuck! Your airplane looks great! And great initiative to get your own aircraft and find your own financing!

I am a bigger guy also (250# as well and working to reduce) but am training in the Remos. Luckily I have one nearby, so training has been relatively painless. But I too was looking at aircraft to purchase and found that other financing options other than AOPA were more competitive. (I believe AOPA uses Bank of America.) In the end, I've decided to continue training and I'll rent an aircraft. But I admire your drive to create to coordinate a deal and put a plane in your tie-down spot!

Looking forward to reading about your progress!

67jwbruce
08-09-2015, 09:49 PM
Great story and nice looking ride! Many in my state (Arkansas) buy their airplane to train in regardless of which certificate they are after, not that many actual flight schools here. I bought a Cessna 150 a few years before sport pilot was invented, took all my training, then sold it for 99.5% of my purchase price. Each time I was with an instructor, we were over weight... There's a 150 pound instructor? that person is probably worth twice their weight in gold...

Keep us posted!

chuckiec
08-11-2015, 08:50 AM
Ok, so we're getting closer to the start of my lessons. Got my student certificate from the FSDO yesterday. Registered with the school this morning only to find out my instructor is in Spain. http://www.sportpilottalk.com/images/smilies/icon_sad.gif Their mechanic also needs to give his approval which probably isn't going to happen today with the weather. It's like having a new toy you can't play with.

67jwbruce
08-11-2015, 10:45 AM
Don't forget that you can root around and find many independent instructors. They might be better for you anyway, as alot of them have their regular job and instruct just for the 'joy' or whatever it might be in mentoring someone else with aviation.

chuckiec
08-11-2015, 11:45 AM
Don't forget that you can root around and find many independent instructors. They might be better for you anyway, as alot of them have their regular job and instruct just for the 'joy' or whatever it might be in mentoring someone else with aviation.
Yeah, I wasn't having any luck with that and then there is still the issue with the insurance.

67jwbruce
08-11-2015, 10:07 PM
Guess you can't make up any economics that would allow you to ferry the plane to Arkansas and do your training here? Aside from whatever insurance issue you are having, I'd be interested in taking on the training. All I would need would be the 5 hours in type to allow me to do the training, and I'm guessing I would get that in the ferry flight.

Oh well, I guess I'm not too old yet to have dreams too..

malexander
08-13-2015, 02:16 PM
Nice write-up. Keep us posted.:)

jedi
08-16-2015, 05:39 AM
Download the book "See How It Flies."

Where are you located?

chuckiec
08-16-2015, 09:29 AM
Long Island, NY. The plane is at HWV. So far the school's mechanic has OK'd the plane now I'm just waiting for the instructor to get back from vacation.

chuckiec
08-24-2015, 08:08 PM
So, finally getting near the start of my training. Last week got the OK from the school's mechanic. My CFI took the plane up to start flying off his 5 hours and is so far satisfied with the performance of the plane. There are a couple minor maintenance issues that need to be looked at but by the end of the week he should satisfy the insurance requirement. I've already booked him for the next six weeks, twice a week for my lessons so if all goes well next Tuesday I'll finally get to take to the air in my plane!

chuckiec
08-31-2015, 07:25 PM
Ah, the joys of aircraft ownership. So over the weekend there was a slow drip from one of the wing tank drains. Then tonight my instructor was flying off the last of his insurance requirement hours when he got a flat on the nose gear. Luckily I knew the tires needed to be replaced and the new tubes I ordered arrived tonight. I also had one new tire that came with the plane so they'll be waiting for the mechanic in the AM. First official lesson is tomorrow. Yeah!

martymayes
09-01-2015, 09:06 AM
Sounds great! Sept. 1 is a good day to start!!

chuckiec
09-01-2015, 08:37 PM
Well, first lesson is finally in the books. Nothing fancy, just turns, climbs and descents. Not as easy as it looks. Take off was funny as I was so concentrating on keeping the plane straight I kinda forgot to take off as we were going more than fast enough when the instructor said you might want to pull back now. Then of course I forgot about right rudder and we drifted a bit to the left. I have to admit, Long Island has some nice scenery along the beach (when you're not too busy trying to hold altitude and airspeed), It was a bit hazy at lower altitudes so there wasn't a good reference point on the horizon. Things started to clear up around 6,000 feet. I have some homework and unless there's a cancellation my next lesson won't be till next week. But then I'm booked 2 lessons a week for the next six weeks (schools site only lets you schedule 45 days out). By then I'll have to change to an earlier timeslot as the days will be getting shorter. The fun has begun.

lnuss
09-02-2015, 06:11 AM
Glad you were finally able to get started. Best of luck to you.

Cobra428
09-07-2015, 04:00 PM
I have enjoyed your progress. I'm in the same boat (or airplane) that you are. I want to get a Light Sport license, but finding someone in the Kansas City area has not been easy.
I'm still looking. I've thought about going your route and buying an airplane first, but not until I find a CFI that will teach me in my plane.

chuckiec
09-08-2015, 01:14 PM
I have enjoyed your progress. I'm in the same boat (or airplane) that you are. I want to get a Light Sport license, but finding someone in the Kansas City area has not been easy.
I'm still looking. I've thought about going your route and buying an airplane first, but not until I find a CFI that will teach me in my plane.
Have you tried the local EAA chapter(s)? I couldn't find anyone through mine but it's worth a shot. Maybe just find a regular CFI willing to follow the sport pilot syllabus. Good luck.

chuckiec
09-09-2015, 06:10 PM
Done with lesson #2. 1.8 hours flight time. Slow flight and stalls. The Zodiac doesn't really do much just kind of mushes and then eventually, if you wait long enough, the nose will drop. It recovers quickly. It's more work remembering how to configure the plane for the maneuver than the actual recovery. Had a nice leisurely flight back to the airport along the beach at 500' and 100 mph indicated while the instructor quizzed me. The instructor demonstrated a touch and go and I then demonstrated how not to setup for a landing. Well, landings are probably lesson 5. lol Next up: Emergency procedures. Total flight time 3 hours.

lazair2
09-09-2015, 07:42 PM
Great job! I give Sport Pilot training across the sound from you in CT in a J3. You were smart to get your own plane. I have to turn down a lot of people because of their weight. Due to my own weight and the useful load of the airplane I'm restricted to students who weigh less than 220 lbs. That's only about half the people who call me for instruction so I turn too many away.

There are some great places to fly to and see over in Long Island. You'll have a blast. Then when finish up you can plan some flights to Block Island, Marthas Vinyard and Nantucket, which are all great places to visit. All are just a hop and skip across and around the Long Island Sound. This is a fun place to fly. Just keep up with the TFR's that pop up all the time, especially during the summer.

67jwbruce
09-09-2015, 08:45 PM
Let us know how the Zodiac does with power on stalls. I've been doing them with my student in the SkyCatcher, but the other day, we had one where the left wing really dropped and the plane twisted up a good 20 degrees or so before I could get my foot stomped down on the rudder... :rollseyes:

chuckiec
09-10-2015, 03:29 AM
Let us know how the Zodiac does with power on stalls. I've been doing them with my student in the SkyCatcher, but the other day, we had one where the left wing really dropped and the plane twisted up a good 20 degrees or so before I could get my foot stomped down on the rudder... :rollseyes:

Even with power on stalls, you really have to work at it to get it to stall and then the nose drops wings level.

chuckiec
09-10-2015, 07:00 AM
Great job! I give Sport Pilot training across the sound from you in CT in a J3. You were smart to get your own plane. I have to turn down a lot of people because of their weight. Due to my own weight and the useful load of the airplane I'm restricted to students who weigh less than 220 lbs. That's only about half the people who call me for instruction so I turn too many away.........

Yes, I believe I checked you out. I would have had to lose 40# which, hopefully I will do anyway but it wasn't going to happen in a realistic time frame. I'm about half way there.

chuckiec
09-16-2015, 10:43 AM
Lesson#3: Emergency procedures. What to do when your engine quits, if you need to make an emergency descent and what to do if there is a fire, etc. My instructor uses A-B-C-D-E; Airspeed, pitch for best glide. Best place to land, preferable no people, firm surface, no obstructions. Checklist, use the engine restart checklist (memorize it). Declare an emergency, call mayday (who, what, where) on 121.5, squawk 7700. Execute the landing, setup for a good approach, turn everything off, unlatch the canopy and land the plane. As always, the instructor demonstrated first. I'm pretty sure there are a few people who were at Smithpoint Park who were wondering just what we were doing. He picked a parking lot as his landing site and down to about 500 feet looked like he was actually going to do it. So I practiced this several times and we also did emergency descents including using a forward slip. I'm beginning to realize that I can put the plane in a steep bank and do other maneuvers and the wings won't fall off and we won't plummet to the Earth. Which is a good thing because the next lesson is ground reference maneuvers and performance maneuvers so we're going to be doing steep turns. I'm also getting better at holding altitude and airspeed. Most importantly, I'm having fun!

67jwbruce
09-16-2015, 10:57 AM
Great, sounds like fun!

chuckiec
09-20-2015, 06:00 PM
I wanted to start this post off by saying this was the first week I got 2 lessons in, but I think technically Sunday is the start of the week. Today was a make up lesson since my instructor decided to go away this weekend so I missed my scheduled Thursday lesson. Since I've now scheduled 3 lessons a week to avoid the 1 lesson weeks, if the weather co-operates, I'll have 4 lessons this week. Anyway, today we practiced turns about a point and steep turns. We also reviewed the engine out procedures. Not an ideal day for an LSA, 10kt winds with 17kt gusts. Let's just say, I'll need more practice. And it looks like I'll be getting it since the winds are going to stick around for the week. Total time: 5.5 hours

chuckiec
09-22-2015, 08:31 PM
So I now know what it feels like to be shot down. ;) Yes, that's right we were practicing takeoffs and landings. My takeoffs are better as I'm able to maintain the runway heading. My patterns also seem pretty consistent as I was turning downwind in about the same place each time. It helps that there was a convenient line of power lines to use as a reference. Struggling a bit with maintaining my speed/altitude on the base. I figure another couple hundred and I'll have it down. :)

67jwbruce
09-23-2015, 07:44 AM
I figure another couple hundred and I'll have it down. :)

You hit the nail on the head. Practice, Practice, Practice. Then one day you'll be introducing a friend to the art of flying, you'll say 'here do this' and when he can't do it because he's all over the place and you say 'no, lets do it kinda like this..' ; you may just smile a little and realize that somewhere, somehow in all that practice some skill crept in there.

chuckiec
09-24-2015, 08:31 PM
More take-offs and landings today. I'm slowly getting better. Taking everyone's suggestions and putting them to use. My instructor pointed out that it's hard to keep my plane in the white arc so I need to be mindful of that. So I have one eye on the airspeed and the other trying to gauge the pitch of the nose. Pretty soon I'm going to look like Marty Feldman. My approaches are pretty good just need to work on my alignment and flare. The instructor demonstrated and then had me do what he calls "ground proximity maneuvers". Ok, so making "S" turns over the runway at about 5 feet (maybe it was less) is a bit unsettling. Looks like more of the same tomorrow. Hey, practice makes perfect. Total time: 7.4 hrs

chuckiec
09-25-2015, 07:34 PM
Touch-n-Gos R US. More landing practice today, 1.9 hours worth and 3 different airports; KHWV(my home base), KFOK and KHTO. KFOK is a class D and apparently has a 3 touch-n-go limit. Not an ideal day as it was a bit bumpy and the ceiling was about 2000' or less in spots. Today was also the first day that the Rotax took some coaxing to get started. Hope this is not what I have to look forward to with the cooler weather. I'm getting better, had some landings without any instructor intervention. And since we were airport hopping got to practice holding altitude at higher power settings. So looks like if I continue to progress, soloing should be in a week or so. Total time: 9.3 hours

lnuss
09-26-2015, 07:53 AM
Great -- thanks for keeping us up to date.

67jwbruce
09-27-2015, 01:40 PM
Make sure your CFI is giving you sport pilot specific training. You need to ask him some questions about your towered work. See, students training to be private pilots have to get 'x' however many landings at towered airports which can be touch and go's. But reading the sport pilot regs, your tower work needs to be full stop landings..

Keep up the good work!

chuckiec
09-28-2015, 11:00 AM
Make sure your CFI is giving you sport pilot specific training. You need to ask him some questions about your towered work. See, students training to be private pilots have to get 'x' however many landings at towered airports which can be touch and go's. But reading the sport pilot regs, your tower work needs to be full stop landings..

Keep up the good work!
I only need 10 to a full stop which I'm sure I'll have by the time I take my check ride.

chuckiec
09-29-2015, 08:32 PM
Well, today the weather was threatening all day. Low ceilings, poor visibility. By my 5 PM lesson time there was a moderate rain. I texted my instructor expecting him to say no flying. Instead he assured me that the showers would past and we would be gtg. So I started to get the plane ready. The rain stopped and we were back to work with takeoffs and landings. We worked on forward and side slips and with that concluded what I needed to know prior to solo. Unfortunately it looks like the rest of the week is a washout so it will be next Tuesday at the earliest before that happens. My landings tonight were good, not great but I'm getting there. I'm also going to need to schedule an oil and plug change in about 3 more hours. Things are looking good. Total time 10.5 hours

67jwbruce
09-30-2015, 02:47 PM
Are you having trouble with you plugs? I've had my plane since 2003 and have never had to pull a plug between annuals.

chuckiec
09-30-2015, 03:52 PM
Are you having trouble with you plugs? I've had my plane since 2003 and have never had to pull a plug between annuals.

Per Rotax when using 100LL, oil and plugs should be changed every 25 hours.

67jwbruce
09-30-2015, 06:24 PM
ahh, rotax. Someday I may fly behind something rotax powered, so far its all been Continental and Lycoming.

chuckiec
10-06-2015, 08:16 PM
Finally got to fly after a week thanks to Mother Nature. Not flying definitely took it's toll as my first few landings were a bit rough. The instructor liked the last couple though so looks like if I can nail the first few on Thursday I may get to solo. I did reach the milestone of completing the first page in my logbook. Total time: 11.4 hours

martymayes
10-07-2015, 03:50 PM
Finally got to fly after a week thanks to Mother Nature. Not flying definitely took it's toll as my first few landings were a bit rough. The instructor liked the last couple though so looks like if I can nail the first few on Thursday I may get to solo. I did reach the milestone of completing the first page in my logbook. Total time: 11.4 hours
Had a lot of students for various reasons didn't get to fly as much as they should have/wanted to. Two steps forward and one step back, at the end of the day you're still going forward just a little slower than preferred. I think you are following the model to the "T"

chuckiec
10-08-2015, 09:10 AM
Had a lot of students for various reasons didn't get to fly as much as they should have/wanted to. Two steps forward and one step back, at the end of the day you're still going forward just a little slower than preferred. I think you are following the model to the "T"
Not that I haven't been trying. My original plan was 2 lessons a week. First week only 1 day was available. Then I had a rain out so at that point I decided to schedule a 3rd lesson figuring I could make up for any more washouts and if I got a 3rd one in it would be gravy. Apparently my instructor does not have any Sat/Sun availability so I have to schedule during the week around my work. It also doesn't help that the days are getting shorter so I've moved my lesson times from 5 PM to 3 PM.

67jwbruce
10-08-2015, 09:03 PM
I have a students whose situation is a lot like yours. We've managed 6 lessons in 3 weeks, just under 8 hours total time. All after work during the week, and wow at how fast the days have gotten shorter. But after he's gone with with a 2 week or so out of town trip and the time change here, after work is going to be tough. It may be Saturdays after that, don't know yet. I hope hes able to stay on track, he's made a ton of progress in the last 3 hours, I'd think solo in about 3 more...

chuckiec
10-09-2015, 05:44 AM
Well, no solo yesterday. Instructor was doing a xcountry with another student and got delayed because our good friends at the FAA pulled a ramp check on him in CT. By the time he got back it was starting to get dark so we had time for only a few circuits in the pattern(by the time he called me with the good news, I had already preflighted the plane so I figured I'd just wait). Today is not looking much better, scattered thunderstorms and 15 kt winds. Tomorrow may be a better day.

chuckiec
10-09-2015, 05:46 AM
I have a students whose situation is a lot like yours. We've managed 6 lessons in 3 weeks, just under 8 hours total time. All after work during the week, and wow at how fast the days have gotten shorter. But after he's gone with with a 2 week or so out of town trip and the time change here, after work is going to be tough. It may be Saturdays after that, don't know yet. I hope hes able to stay on track, he's made a ton of progress in the last 3 hours, I'd think solo in about 3 more...

I've started moving my lessons up to 3 PM or earlier which means I have to leave work early, not ideal but what the heck.

chuckiec
10-09-2015, 12:53 PM
Well, no flying today. :( Too windy so looks like I'll have to wait till tomorrow.

chuckiec
10-10-2015, 04:07 PM
Well, no solo today. It was a bit gusty but at least I got to fly. That's the good news. My instructor told me he's taking another trip to Europe (oh to be young and have money) the end of next week so I'm going to miss 2 more lessons. It means I better bring my "A" game Tuesday or I won't be flying for a week. He commented today that this was the first time he was not nervous about my landing. I said that made one of us. Actually, considering the wind they were pretty decent. So we'll see what happens.

chuckiec
10-13-2015, 01:45 PM
Mother Nature really hates me. This morning there was some slight rain, but then it cleared up and was nice. Of course right before lesson time 900' scattered clouds with 14kt winds and 22kt gusts rolled in. Lesson canceled. Since my instructor is taking a European vacation this weekend, no lessons till next week. Guess I'll just study for the written.

wyoranch
10-13-2015, 01:56 PM
Mother Nature really hates me. This morning there was some slight rain, but then it cleared up and was nice. Of course right before lesson time 900' scattered clouds with 14kt winds and 22kt gusts rolled in. Lesson canceled. Since my instructor is taking a European vacation this weekend, no lessons till next week. Guess I'll just study for the written.
May I offer you a piece of advice as a long time instructor?
If I was your instructor and was to be gone for a while and had an ambitious student I would recommend that you spend a little time with another instructor. Couple of benefits, first it keeps you in the air and you continue to hone your skills and second it give you another perspective on your current lessons. I would ask your instructor how he felt about that and if he would recommend someone to you.
Just a thought
Rick

chuckiec
10-13-2015, 08:01 PM
May I offer you a piece of advice as a long time instructor?
If I was your instructor and was to be gone for a while and had an ambitious student I would recommend that you spend a little time with another instructor. Couple of benefits, first it keeps you in the air and you continue to hone your skills and second it give you another perspective on your current lessons. I would ask your instructor how he felt about that and if he would recommend someone to you.
Just a thought
Rick
Unfortunately, because I'm using my own plane and it's an E-LSA, It took some doing to get the insurance company to agree to having the instructor only fly 5 hours solo before he could teach me. No one else at the school is "approved" to fly my plane. I'll just have to suck it up and wait. Fortunately, once we get past the solo, there aren't many new skills to learn, it will be mostly practice.

somorris
10-14-2015, 08:21 PM
Hang in there. As long as you are having fun, its all good.

67jwbruce
10-15-2015, 06:08 PM
Why not talk to one of the instructors at the school and see about getting a lesson or so in the school plane while you wait? Something specific, like concentration on Stalls and Recovery, emergency procedures, partial panel, or Simulated Instrument. Just because you hold (or have applied for) a sport pilot student certificate and have no Aviation Medical doesn't mean that you can't take dual instruction. It only means that you aren't qualified to log the time as Pilot in Command. Heck, you still can't log it as Pilot in Command if you are a PPL student with a 3rd class medical. The instructor shouldn't mind, you aren't asking him for a 90 day solo or something like that, just an hour flight.