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Datdude
08-15-2008, 03:51 PM
I have been dreaming about getting my pilots license for a long time and think I am ready to take the next step......what do I need to know? I have a call in at the local flight center and am waiting for the instructor to call me back. How long does it take for basic flight instruction? Approximate costs ($35 per hour for instructor/$109 per hour for plane). Any input would be appreciated

wakeX2wake
08-15-2008, 03:55 PM
my friend is getting his right now and the way he explained it to me... you have to have a "parent" with you for 40 hrs then you pass the papers and you're on your own

bigmac
08-15-2008, 04:09 PM
I have been dreaming about getting my pilots license for a long time and think I am ready to take the next step......what do I need to know? I have a call in at the local flight center and am waiting for the instructor to call me back. How long does it take for basic flight instruction? Approximate costs ($35 per hour for instructor/$109 per hour for plane). Any input would be appreciatedDon't do anything. Just go, take an introductory ride. I remember at age 16 sitting around bored one afternoon and finding an introductory ride insert in a magazine ($5.00). I went out to the airport, we got in a plane and after getting airborne, the instructor said "you have it" and he didn't take the controls back until we were on final an hour later. I was hooked. Didn't tell my parents until the day I was going out for my first solo. They were OK with it, even bought me a nice plaque with my cut-off shirt tale laminated in. Learning to fly was one of the most important events in my life.

When I started, dual instruction in a Cessna 150 was $18.90 per hour for plane and instructor (plane was $13.90, instructor got $5.00/hour). A new Cessna 150 was $12,000 and the dealers actually had showrooms, like car dealers. Goes to show you the effect product liability can have - literally decimate an entire industry.

Thanks for the trip down memory lane. I say congratulations and go for it. I can't imagine you will regret it.

shepherd
08-15-2008, 04:10 PM
I'ts been 20 years since I got my ticket, but here's what I remember...

Your instructor will tell you exactly what you need. First thing will be a flight physical from an FAA-licensed doctor. FAA's web site provides a directory of docs if your flight school doesn't.

The flight school may try to sell you ground school instruction. I had success studying for that test on my own. There are plenty of texts/study guides that you can use.

Datdude
08-15-2008, 04:13 PM
Thanks for the quick responses! I can't wait to hear from the instructor and get the ball rolling

shepherd
08-15-2008, 04:16 PM
When I started, dual instruction in a Cessna 150 was $18.90 per hour for plane and instructor (plane was $13.90, instructor got $5.00/hour). A new Cessna 150 was $12,000 and the dealers actually had showrooms, like car dealers. Goes to show you the effect product liability can have - literally decimate an entire industry.



Boy, that's the truth. It doesn't seem right that a new airplane costs 3 times as much as a new car when the airplane has fewer moving parts; a smaller, less complicated engine; less luxurious interior; no A/C; no 6-speaker stereo; and probably fewer instruments. Oh, and the car is probably just as fast (disregarding speed limits, that is).

Tom023
08-15-2008, 04:55 PM
Keep in mind 40 hours (actually I think it's 35 but can't remember) is the minimum required by the FAA, the average is more like 75+ before you have the proficiency to pass a check ride, just depends on your rate of learning. Also, if you only fly once or twice a week, it will take longer than if you fly every day or every other day. Your new found skills diminish quickly when you don't fly.

east tx skier
08-15-2008, 05:54 PM
I got all the way to 38 hours and two short solo cross country flights before I ran out of time and money. I think it was ($75 per hour plus instructor when I was flying). Loads of fun, but you need to be ready to make a serious time commitment to it. Remember, the last thing you want to be is just a mediocre pilot.

My introductory lesson was two hours. One hour of ground and one of flight. Flight instructors have big cajones to sit there with their arms crossed while a neb triest to steer an old airplane down a postage stamp of a runway at 65 knots with his feet.

Did ground school twice (second time was a freebie through school). Passed the FAA written.

I envy the people nowadays. Navigation with GPS makes things so much easier. I'm sure you still have to use a slide rule and plot courses on maps, but I'm guessing it's practically a failsafe piece of equipment.

First time you lift that plane off the runway is about the best feeling in the world.

TX.X-30 fan
08-15-2008, 06:35 PM
I
First time you lift that plane off the runway is about the best feeling in the world.



Can you give a good analogy??







































:D:D

east tx skier
08-15-2008, 08:47 PM
It's better than sex. But I was 14 at the time and the girls at my school weren't like the thong wearing little so-and-so's my son will have to defend his virtue against. ;) So I had no basis for comparison (well, other than ...)

vogelm1
08-15-2008, 09:13 PM
DD, you can always start smaller....;):D

I'll take you up for free with a "buddy box". You can fly my radio-controlled Cap 232 with 50cc chainsaw engine all you want. Can't do that in a Cessna.

Seriously, if you do go for it, let me know how it goes...I've been thinking about the same thing the past couple years. Tim Ash your instructor??

Carbon Dreams
08-15-2008, 11:50 PM
Basics of the Private Pilot Cert.

17 yrs or older
Total Time: 40 hrs
Dual Time: At least 20 hrs
Solo Time: At least 10 hrs
Dual Cross Country time: 3 hrs
Dual Night Time: 3 hrs
Solo cross country time: 5 hrs

You must get a student pilot certificate: Medical Examination
You must pass a Pre-solo written test: Graded to 100% with your instructor
You must pass a Written Exam: Closed Book
You must pass a Practical Exam: With the FAA or DPE

These are the minimums! Most of my students that were successful with their certificate had on average 65-70 hours, most of that dual. The lowest student hours was 42 hours TT while the highest was 200 hrs (not all with me).


My recommendation is to take an introduction flight which is pretty cheap. If you like it and have the money to complete the certificate, go and get a flight physical for your student pilot cert. If you fail the exam, than the decision has been made for you. Then and only then do you start scheduling training flights.

Definitely give it a try! You will love it!

shepherd
08-16-2008, 12:08 AM
I have my log book at my desk here.
Last entry was in Feb 2000 :( (I've flown in the right seat several times since.)

Solo'ed after 16.2 hours.

Got my ticket after 58.7 total hours.

bigmac
08-16-2008, 12:31 AM
Found my old log book too...first solo at 10 hours, check ride at 43.5 hours.

Datdude
08-16-2008, 02:25 PM
DD, you can always start smaller....;):D

I'll take you up for free with a "buddy box". You can fly my radio-controlled Cap 232 with 50cc chainsaw engine all you want. Can't do that in a Cessna.

Seriously, if you do go for it, let me know how it goes...I've been thinking about the same thing the past couple years. Tim Ash your instructor??


I appreciate the offer, and will take you up on that. Where does Tim Ash fly? Maybe we could get a group discount and study together? I have a call into the Rhinelander Flight Center. I was looking into Cessna's training program, but the nearest one is in Wisconsin Rapids which is too far. I got the green light from the wife last night:cool:

rodltg2
08-16-2008, 03:04 PM
i got my ticket i think back in 2000. took me awhile because sometimes i wouldnt fly for over a month. not a good way to do it. make sure you can go at least twice a week or you'll spend too much money and time re learning stuff from the flight before.

i eventually bought a c172 which took me to the poor house. much more maintenance than i anticapated. i sold it about 4 years ago and havent flown since. unfortunately after 911 , the flight schools went out of business at my local airport so there isnt a place to rent near by.

YooperScott
08-16-2008, 03:47 PM
Remember airplanes make boats and snowmobiles look CHEAP!!!! Sent you a PM.

Scott
'95 LT-1 Prostar 190

vogelm1
08-16-2008, 07:07 PM
I appreciate the offer, and will take you up on that. Where does Tim Ash fly? Maybe we could get a group discount and study together? I have a call into the Rhinelander Flight Center. I was looking into Cessna's training program, but the nearest one is in Wisconsin Rapids which is too far. I got the green light from the wife last night:cool:

Tim does lessons out at Lakeland Airport (last I heard anyway). A couple friends of mine got their license through him.

flyingskibiker
08-18-2008, 12:41 AM
A friend said to me (about an instrument rating), "It's not going to get any cheaper!" So, if you are going to do it, don't wait JUST because of expense.

I was a full time student in 2001. I even got grounded during 9/11. Though, students were some of the first pilots back in the air... Some training on a regular weekly schedule will help cut down the hours needed for each rating.

I soloed at 15.5 hours and my first check ride was supposed to be at 45.8. But my instructor forgot a newly added night cross country. I didnít fly for almost a year. Then, at 59.1, I took my check ride.

It's a pretty great thing to be able to do. Thing is, if one doesn't need to fly for a living, have a bunch of friends that are into it and are willing to deal with a few gotchas, or don't have a pretty good bankroll, it's not justified doing it on a regular basis. I'm trying to get a few friends BACK into it. Wish me luck!

justflyem
08-18-2008, 01:46 AM
Your going to have to do the in flight stuff, soloing first, then getting your license and you will also need to enroll in a ground school too in order to get your written testing out of the way. They will probably have you flying a tomahawk or 150. Definately do it, and stick with it, no stopping along the way. The reward is the greatest!! I would take flying over boating any day.

Hrkdrivr
08-18-2008, 11:13 AM
Dude,

DO IT! It's the most fun you can have w/your clothes on!

Here are a few "BUTs", most alluded to above:

1. If you're going to spend the money and the time, COMMIT! Set aside money and time and do it in a logical, methodical way. If you don't fly often, you'll spend half of every lesson re-learning what you learned last time instead of progressing during the whole lesson. Get the most bang for your buck and time by sticking to it.
2. If you're not learning/progressing w/a certain instructor, GET A DIFFERENT ONE, either at the same school or a different school. The IP/student relationship is a BUSINESS relationship, and if you don't get along/can't learn from a certain person, GET ANOTHER. It's your money and your time...just like a business decision, if it's not working, change it. Sometimes a different IP can describe a maneuver in a slightly different way and it will make the light come on.
3. STUDY!! Unlike a car, you can't just pull over and park it while you think through a problem. Aviation is uniquely unforgiving of the unprepared. Know your equipment; all aircraft have limitations, based on the laws of physics, that you cannot change by wishing them away or hoping things will be OK. You might get away with flying over-gross a few times, if you're lucky, but luck is a terrible planning factor and doesn't lend itself to longevity.
4. If you can't have fun flying BY THE RULES, then do yourself, your family and everyone on the ground a favor and don't fly. Most aviators, myself included, have lost friends to stupid crashes when they did dumb things in airplanes.
5. Similar to #4, remember, you can only tie the record for flying low to the ground. Most non-aviators won't appreciate the skill required to fly at 10 feet off the ground any more than flying 500 feet off the ground, and the risk of killing yourself increases exponentialy the lower you go.
6. Be realistic. Not everyone is God's gift to aviation and some people take longer than others to learn. Don't get frustrated.
7. Once you earn the coveted ticket, remember it's a license to LEARN. If you don't stay in the books and the cockpit, your skills and knowledge will atrophy. Plus, after the private ticket, you'll probably want to get instrument rated and then multi-engine qualified, and so on. There's always something else to pursue!!
8. Don't push the weather. If you're not instrument-rated, don't fly when the weather is questionable. If your airplane doesn't have the equipment to handle the weather or icing, don't fly. Don't build a shedule around flying your own airplane that will compel you to fly when you shouldn't. I.E., if you have a crucial business meeting, have a backup plan, either driving or a commercial plane ticket. "Get-there-itis" kills.
9. Honeslty know your limits. Pride and arrogance don't translate into flying skills...remember the Kennedy crash? They don't call them "doctor-killers" for no reason.

I guess I'm done pontificating...above all else, have fun!! It's a great fraternity!

Carbon Dreams
08-18-2008, 11:20 AM
Dude,

DO IT! It's the most fun you can have w/your clothes on!

Here are a few "BUTs", most alluded to above:

1. If you're going to spend the money and the time, COMMIT! Set aside money and time and do it in a logical, methodical way. If you don't fly often, you'll spend half of every lesson re-learning what you learned last time instead of progressing during the whole lesson. Get the most bang for your buck and time by sticking to it.
2. If you're not learning/progressing w/a certain instructor, GET A DIFFERENT ONE, either at the same school or a different school. The IP/student relationship is a BUSINESS relationship, and if you don't get along/can't learn from a certain person, GET ANOTHER. It's your money and your time...just like a business decision, if it's not working, change it. Sometimes a different IP can describe a maneuver in a slightly different way and it will make the light come on.
3. STUDY!! Unlike a car, you can't just pull over and park it while you think through a problem. Aviation is uniquely unforgiving of the unprepared. Know your equipment; all aircraft have limitations, based on the laws of physics, that you cannot change by wishing them away or hoping things will be OK. You might get away with flying over-gross a few times, if you're lucky, but luck is a terrible planning factor and doesn't lend itself to longevity.
4. If you can't have fun flying BY THE RULES, then do yourself, your family and everyone on the ground a favor and don't fly. Most aviators, myself included, have lost friends to stupid crashes when they did dumb things in airplanes.
5. Similar to #4, remember, you can only tie the record for flying low to the ground. Most non-aviators won't appreciate the skill required to fly at 10 feet off the ground any more than flying 500 feet off the ground, and the risk of killing yourself increases exponentialy the lower you go.
6. Be realistic. Not everyone is God's gift to aviation and some people take longer than others to learn. Don't get frustrated.
7. Once you earn the coveted ticket, remember it's a license to LEARN. If you don't stay in the books and the cockpit, your skills and knowledge will atrophy. Plus, after the private ticket, you'll probably want to get instrument rated and then multi-engine qualified, and so on. There's always something else to pursue!!
8. Don't push the weather. If you're not instrument-rated, don't fly when the weather is questionable. If your airplane doesn't have the equipment to handle the weather or icing, don't fly. Don't build a shedule around flying your own airplane that will compel you to fly when you shouldn't. I.E., if you have a crucial business meeting, have a backup plan, either driving or a commercial plane ticket. "Get-there-itis" kills.
9. Honeslty know your limits. Pride and arrogance don't translate into flying skills...remember the Kennedy crash? They don't call them "doctor-killers" for no reason.

I guess I'm done pontificating...above all else, have fun!! It's a great fraternity!

He is correct on all points. Flying is a great responsibility with even greater rewards. Take the time to do it right and maximize the fun factor while minimizing the risk. Bottom line: USE YOUR HEAD!

bigmac
08-18-2008, 11:54 AM
8. Don't push the weather. If you're not instrument-rated, don't fly when the weather is questionable. If your airplane doesn't have the equipment to handle the weather or icing, don't fly.

I would quibble by adding the observation that being instrument rated doesn't make a pilot immune to bad weather. An instrument-rated pilot who only flies instruments enough to maintain currency may well be more dangerous in that he may find himself flying into conditions that his ticket says he can handle, but his skill/experience level is insufficient.

Honeslty know your limits. Pride and arrogance don't translate into flying skills...remember the Kennedy crash? They don't call them "doctor-killers" for no reason.

Junior was a doctor? I thought he was a lawyer....:)

shepherd
08-18-2008, 12:12 PM
Fly IFR -- I Follow Roads.

When the ceiling gets low and visibility diminishes, find a nice wide highway to follow. For example, I-95 is a nice 1,000 mile long emergency landing strip. ;) Just watch out for the power lines.

Hrkdrivr
08-18-2008, 12:56 PM
I would quibble by adding the observation that being instrument rated doesn't make a pilot immune to bad weather. An instrument-rated pilot who only flies instruments enough to maintain currency may well be more dangerous in that he may find himself flying into conditions that his ticket says he can handle, but his skill/experience level is insufficient.



Junior was a doctor? I thought he was a lawyer....:)

On the first point, you're not quibbling, you're clarifying/adding...and you're EXACTLY correct...goes along w/HONESTLY knowing your limits. Just because the piece of paper (plastic card now) says it's legal doesn't mean it's SMART.

On the second point, yeah, I was more refering to the arrogance of a lot of people who fly in conditions they shouldn't because the life they've led up to that point makes them think they're bullet-proof...touche!

bigmac
08-18-2008, 01:57 PM
I love flying - it's a great experience. But in almost 40 years of doing it, I've found that a) it's expensive and b) it's cumbersome. In looking over my log books, I've found that despite my instrument, multi-engine, sailplane and seaplane ratings, most of my flying has been local, within 200 miles of home. Back in the 70's, I owned an old straight-tail 172 with a couple of friends (one of whom was an A&P, thank god) and did a lot of cross-country flying, but not much over the last 20 years or so. One of the things I did that I enjoyed the most was my function as Mission Pilot for the Civil Air Patrol, but that organization got kind of silly in recent years and I dropped away when they wanted my to buy a suit of Air Force dress blues for the parties after the SAR excercises, and after I got dinged at an excercise because the Naval Aviator jacket I wore over my regulation flight suit was non-regulation.

Things are very complex right now in the world of aviation, and universally outrageously expensive. Mostly, I've found that I enjoy flying for the flying part, not the transportation part - I don't ever have to get anywhere bad enough that I'd ever want to file IFR ever again. If I have to be there that badly, I fly commercial or drive. These days, it just makes no sense to me to spend the outrageous amount of money it takes to remain current AND proficient (the two are not the same) at the kind of advanced techniques required to make flying myself a viable transportation method. Now, if I were going to BUY an airplane and use it for transportation....that would be different. But that is breathtakingly expensive. It absolutely requires a time and money committment to be good enough at it to be safe.

My solution as been to move toward ultralights. Haven't bought one yet, but I've flown them a lot and more so lately. Those things are a blast, and an impromptu 2 hour hop out in the wind on a beautiful day is far closer to what I've always enjoyed about flying than the cumbersome procedure-based exercise general aviation has become.

This isn't meant to discourage Datdude. I once was where he is. But...been there, done that...time to move on.

IMHO

Hrkdrivr
08-18-2008, 02:05 PM
bigmac,

I'm the same way. I'm blessed to get paid to fly, but at work we fly very advanced equipment and it's a breeze. The most difficult flying I've done in the last 20 years has been in Cessna 172s.

shepherd
08-18-2008, 02:46 PM
I've always wanted an amphib, but they are the most expensive toys in a world of expensive toys. Lately I've been thinking about amphib ultralights. Have you flown any of those Mac?

My father has an Osprey kit that he's building. He hinted he may give that to me to finish since he's 77 years old and having some health issues.

bigmac
08-18-2008, 02:51 PM
bigmac,

I'm the same way. I'm blessed to get paid to fly, but at work we fly very advanced equipment and it's a breeze. The most difficult flying I've done in the last 20 years has been in Cessna 172s.

Back when I owned the 172, my father's company's corporate pilot and I got to be good friends. I logged many hours of dual with him in the company King Air. He thought I was nuts to want to fly anything more than puttin' around the patch in a J3 - technical flying should be left to professionals. At the time I thought he was nuts. Now, I'm not so sure that he wasn't right.

bigmac
08-18-2008, 02:59 PM
I've always wanted an amphib, but they are the most expensive toys in a world of expensive toys. Lately I've been thinking about amphib ultralights. Have you flown any of those Mac?


Yes. I've flown a T-Bird with inflateable floats and retractable wheels. The floats work great on water AND on snow (ideal for someone who lives on a lake in Minnesota). I like the concept of taxiing the thing out of the storage shed out back and down into the lake. I'd want a two-seater, which puts the thing out of the ultralight class and it would have to be certificated, unless I could document that it was being used for training. Certification isn't that big a deal - I could do my own annual inspections if I build more than 51% of it. Still thinkin' on it.

Hrkdrivr
08-18-2008, 04:02 PM
Um...oh yeah...no slam on doctors intended in general, bigmac...they're just overly-represented in the wrecks...

bigmac
08-18-2008, 04:18 PM
Um...oh yeah...no slam on doctors intended in general, bigmac...they're just overly-represented in the wrecks...Yes...been that way for decades. Probably in large part for the reason you mentioned.

#47of100TeamMC
08-19-2008, 05:01 PM
What about going for your Sport Pilot Certificate instead of your PPL? Requires much less training time. Yes you are limited to Light Sport aircraft and also limited in airspace. (no class A) But it could be a good stepping stone for your PPL as your training hours count towards your PPL. Plus then you could purchase a kick a$$ airplace like this...

...anyone notice a familiar boat in the picture?

a few websites for reading material.
www.iconaircraft.com (http://www.iconaircraft.com)
www.flightdesignusa.com/ (http://www.flightdesignusa.com/)
www.sportpilot.org (http://www.sportpilot.org)

#47of100TeamMC
08-19-2008, 05:06 PM
a little bit more about what a Light Sport Aircraft is all about.
http://www.sportpilot.org/images/aircraft_index-1.gif

I'd be interested to hear what folks with their PPL think about the Sport Pilot Certificate option. There seem to be mixed reviews. :popcorn:

fletch_n_me
08-19-2008, 06:44 PM
The only problem that I see now is that when I went to school - wet rates were @$45 in a 172. You are lucky to be under $100 at all now. It takes the shine out of the thoughts of flying somewhere for the weekend when you can do it faster and cheaper on a commercial flight some of the time. It is a lot of fun though.

#47of100TeamMC
08-20-2008, 10:26 AM
Forgot to add. They are ammending the Sport Pilot Rules. Part of this ammendment is to allow other small aircraft like the Cessna 150 to be flown under the new Sport Pilot Certificate... Could be a really good option now!

6ballsisall
08-20-2008, 10:30 AM
The only problem that I see now is that when I went to school - wet rates were @$45 in a 172. You are lucky to be under $100 at all now. It takes the shine out of the thoughts of flying somewhere for the weekend when you can do it faster and cheaper on a commercial flight some of the time. It is a lot of fun though.

Tru dat. I've yet to figure out how to financially justify G.A. vs. traveling commercial. I think except for the elite and high wealth guy/gal where their time is literally worth tens of thousands an hour, you just cant feasibly make G.A. pay for you.

None the less, I enjoy the heck out of it and wish I could get my flight time in!!

conway400
08-20-2008, 10:35 AM
It will always be very hard to beat commercial with GA when you talk price only. With GA, you are trading time savings and being your own scheduler for money. Basically buying an expensive time machine when you get up to business class. HOWEVER, learning to fly and the enjoyment of it are another big part of GA that out way this factor for many. Hard to justify some of these high dollar MasterCrafts sometimes too. :) But well worth it to most.

Check our website out for more info too.

www.airsparrow.com

bigmac
08-20-2008, 12:46 PM
I think that learning to fly is a great thing to do in itself, but if one wants to be practical about it, it's worth considering what one is going to do with his/her pilot's license after he gets it. Are you going to be able to afford to fly enough to maintain currency AND proficiency? Can you afford to buy an airplane as a recreational expense? Can you justify it for your business?

The problem with owning an airplane as a mode of transportation is that the less you use it, the more of an unjustifiable expense it is. As a practical measure a lot of those owners use the plane as a business expense. If one is just using it as something for occasional excursions for the family, the offset expense vs commercial airfare is pretty negative. Some airplane owners ameliorate the expenses by buying the plane and keeping it on lease-back to an FBO. That's viable, but it usually means that you have to schedule and rent the plane just like everybody else, which eliminates a lot of the convenience factor. Perhaps the better option is a flying club. Those can be good and bad.

Leasing a plane, either from an FBO or a flying club, is the most common thing, but that is still expensive. You have to demonstrate currency to their satisfaction. And as far as a vacation tool, most FBOs require that you pay a minimum daily hour charge. My local FBO requires a minimum of 3 hours per day if you're renting it all day. So, if I'm going somewhere on vacation for a week to someplace that's 3 hours away, I'd be paying for 21 hours of time on the aircraft even though I'd only be putting 6 hours on the tach.

These observations are what gets me back to ultralights. A new T-Bird I kit is about $9000. No airworthiness certificate, no annual inspection. No major overhauls. Obviously they need to be maintained, but you can do that yourself, and a Rotax rebuild is going to be a lot cheaper than overhauling a Lycoming. Just sayin'. Since my business can't justify owning an airplane, and all I can afford is recreational flying, seems like a reasonable way to go.


http://www.indyaircraftltd.com/manage/UserFiles/Image/t-ii%20show%20plane%201.jpg

http://www.indyaircraftltd.com/manage/UserFiles/Image/tii%20show%20plane%20cabin%20close.jpg

Datdude
08-20-2008, 01:04 PM
Thanks for all of the input! You guys have an amazing amount of knowledge that I appreciate you sharing with me. I had a message from the instructor last night and will hopefully speak with him today.