First Solo!!!

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by Josh Parker, Jan 7, 2019.

  1. Josh Parker

    Josh Parker Filing Flight Plan

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    Well, just as the title reads, I soloed for the first time yesterday 1/6/2019. I had 15.5 hrs. Weather was perfect, 12000 ceiling, 6SM vis. 6/7 knot winds with relatively low xwind component, but enough that I had to concentrate, crab, and slip to land.

    We flew to practice area, I did 3 full stop landings. Instructor kicked out. I did 3 full stops on my own. WOW, what a difference without a 280lb instructor in a C172S. That actually kind of spooked me for a split second with flying characteristics different and W&B.

    While in the pattern I was surprisingly calm, but nervous enough to remember every last step. I made my calls for each turn, focused on speed WAY more than I do with the CFI in the right seat. Flew a little bit extended downwind each time so I can have a good base to final.

    1st landing was great, wasn't a greaser, I was about 68knots with the bit of xwind and nerves. Second landing I was a bit faster at 70knots and on flare I ballooned a hair, then bounced a bit, and didn't angle it JUST perfect on landing, but I was right on center line and kept it there. Now the 3rd landing I was proud of, even though winds changed direction a bit and were at 7knots. Perfect glide slope, great approach speed, had the crab in, and slipped it wonderfully right before touchdown.

    The whole time I kept calm and forced myself to relax. I got warm, so on each landing I popped the window to cool off, breath, reset the plane (I use trim a lot so I had to reset). After the 3 landings I wanted to have some actual fun, so we did a full on approach to a big Class charlie (KSDF) and did a downtown tour (downtown is in the class C). The ATC was super nice, accommodating, and I only was slow on one call, which CFI promptly fixed.

    Here's the thing. Coming back to home airport (KLOU, busy Class D), I was frazzled I think, in the pattern I was too quick, didn't descend well, lots of traffic, had to go around on first try I was half a mile out and aborted, gut feeling. Second attempt I extended Downwind, still fast, had to remove a notch of flaps from speeding back up (not removing power, doh!). But I took a deep breath and did great by the time I hit my short final. Lesson learned, 2.4 hrs is a lot to do especially with first solo. End of the day I cut the back out of that t-shirt and was thrilled.
     
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  2. 455 Bravo Uniform

    455 Bravo Uniform Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Congrats!! Your first solo only happens once, and it sounded great.
     
  3. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    congrats!
     
  4. rk911

    rk911 Line Up and Wait PoA Supporter

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    well done!
     
  5. SkyDog58

    SkyDog58 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Woohoo!!! :cheers:
     
  6. Hang 4

    Hang 4 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Always a great feeling - congratulations!
     
  7. luvflyin

    luvflyin Final Approach

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    Cool. Solo Cross Country next.
     
  8. DFH65

    DFH65 Pattern Altitude

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    Way to go!
     
  9. texasclouds

    texasclouds Line Up and Wait

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    Good job!
     
  10. lancie00

    lancie00 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congratulations! That's a day you'll never forget. A combination of "Holy crap, I'm doing it!" and "Holy crap, what am I doing?"
     
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  11. Rgbeard

    Rgbeard Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congrats!!!! I don't know about you - but for me it brought the feeling of - "Ohmigod, I really have to land this thing myself!"

    SOLO XC Coming!!
     
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  12. Peter Anderson

    Peter Anderson Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congrats pilot!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
     
  13. F-GCRU

    F-GCRU Filing Flight Plan

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    Congrats!
    Something I am very surprised, do all US pilot students go to the PPL through the 172. Here in France it's a very expensive aircraft. For example, I got trained with a small Jodel of 65HP, then with a Cessna 150 of 100HP.

    But congrats! Enjoy your future pilot story
     
  14. Josh Parker

    Josh Parker Filing Flight Plan

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    Absolutely! I took off, and first turn that split second thought, CRAP! I have to land, but it went away quick and talked through each.individual.freaking.step and nailed it.
     
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  15. Josh Parker

    Josh Parker Filing Flight Plan

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    My instructor won't fit in a 150. I pay $89 an hour dry. Don't know how that compares, but it fits my budget and will be the airplane I will fly most after PPL.
     
  16. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Congrats
     
  17. davidgfern

    davidgfern Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congratulations!
     
  18. mmaclauchlan

    mmaclauchlan Filing Flight Plan

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    Congrats on the solo! I can't imagine the feeling that comes with such an accomplishment; the feeling of freedom must be unreal! And perhaps a little bit stressful.

    I'm a few flight hours away from my first solo, and I already lose sleep thinking about it. Life-long dream of 35 years...check. I'm loving every second of my training, but having that empty seat next to me will be something else entirely.

    Again, congrats and thank you for sharing.
     
  19. Josh Parker

    Josh Parker Filing Flight Plan

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    Personally, It's talking up the confidence that you know your stuff. My instructor solo'd me simple. All I did was pattern work and 3 landings. Nothing NEW, remember that. You've done it a LOT, think through your steps, and take a second to look around, realize YOU ARE flying, and you know the steps. It's all about the set up on final, if it's like you remember, and follows the steps, it'll happen, if anything is off, GO AROUND.
     
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  20. CJ Rader

    CJ Rader Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congratulations! I'm in the pre-solo phase of my training. My instructor says probably one more lesson and they're going to schedule me for a pre-solo progress check and if all goes well, schedule the solo itself. Its one of those things that creates excitement and trepidation concurrently. My instructor generally sits back and lets me fly the plane now, but I sure get used to him always being there. But anyway, enough of that, well done!
     
  21. MacFlier

    MacFlier Pre-Flight

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    That's exactly what my CFI said. Just do what you've been doing with me, same thing, just the plane will climb a lot better... :)
     
  22. DesertNomad

    DesertNomad Pattern Altitude

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    When I trained the 172 was the smallest available since we are at 4415’ above sea level. I paid $180/hr including the CFI.
     
  23. RonP

    RonP Filing Flight Plan

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    Congratulations! It has been almost 4 years and close to 300 hours since my solo. Still remember pushing the throttle forward on the 172 and feeling good until the wheels left the ground thinking I have no choice but to land the first time by myself. Certainly a dose of reality. However my instructor had a handheld radio in case coaching was needed and I trusted him more than me. By that I mean if he felt I was adequately trained to land by myself then I had faith in his judgement that if I did everything I was taught I would have no problems.

    I had 3 instructors pre-solo. My first instructor got me almost to solo and was out due to a detached retina (no, it was NOT from my hard landings). He passed me off to another instructor rather than wait for his medical to clear. Between all that my cousin would supplement my lessons. They all had specific pointers regarding landing. On that first solo they were all in my head coaching me along. Even to this day I can't get them out of my head when landing. Good instructors and good training I suspect will stay in your head a lifetime.

    By the way where I learned to fly they had an excellent staff of instructors. Even the ones that did not fly with me were always available for consultation, tips, knowledge, etc. They were not full time instructors or career pilots and did it because they enjoyed it. Great people that I can go on and on about how they went above and beyond even when not on the Hobbs.

    Getting to know them and the skill they have teaching someone to fly and especially to land is amazing and the responsibility they shoulder cutting someone loose to solo deserves a thanks. Even now when I am at the airport I buy them lunch. Take the time to thank an instructor even if he/she is not your instructor.
     
  24. Huckster79

    Huckster79 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congratulations! Theres nothing like it. Kinda like loosing your virginity but better! Lol. You are now truly a pilot! Welcome to the fraternity brother...
     
  25. danhagan

    danhagan Pattern Altitude

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    Mine was 13 years ago, but had that same feeling ... it went away FAST when the passenger door popped open on crosswind (happened all the time in the 152 we were flying). I had dropped him at Alpha 3 and after my last landing I exited Alpha 2 and forgot I dropped him at 3 until he waved me down:confused:
     
  26. DutchRoller

    DutchRoller Ejection Handle Pulled

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    The exact opposite actually. Losing your virginity is when you stop going solo and go dual for the first time.
     
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  27. Huckster79

    Huckster79 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    LOL! True on solo vs dual. But I'd still rather relive my first solo in my head than the loosing my virginity...
     
  28. Unit74

    Unit74 Final Approach

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    OP... wait till you start instrument training. You will reflect back and wish it was easy like the PPl was.