Incomplete Instrument Checkride

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by Betmerick, Aug 12, 2019.

  1. Betmerick

    Betmerick Filing Flight Plan

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    I was wondering how to best proceed from this point. The sticking point is the DPE. I'm not the youngest student around (I'm 62) so I might be set in my ways in a few things.

    I didn't get a good vibe from this guy especially by the way he was addressing me. He was late getting there and I had already flew a few approaches before hand. He gave me a 2 3/4 hour oral pounding! Then we went flying. I did my radial intercept just fine but he kept needling me.... calling me "hey captain" amongst other comments. When we went to do the first RVAV he had me to it at a outlying airport as he doesn't like mine. We have a Delta with full time controllers and a great facility. The airport for the procedures was uncontrolled so he was playing ATC with me. When he said "radar service terminated change to advisory frequency" I didn't respond in a timely fashion as I am not used to these commands.

    He said we can continue but I would be getting an incomplete. By then I was pretty frustrated and felt my concentration was gone so I called the rest of the ride off.

    My question is..... this guy was recommended by my "IFR excellerated program" and he flew in from Indianapolis. He charged me $500 plus fuel.

    Can I complete my checkride with a more familiar DPE (my private examiner) or someone else local? Would I have to start from square one or will I get credit for what I passed? I believe I have 60 days to finish off with the original (as well as 2 calendar months after logbook signoff) so I have about a month to decide.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. 1anG

    1anG Pre-Flight

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    If you switch DOE It’s will be the new DPE’s Discretion to retest things already completed. From what I heard most will do an entire retest because they don’t want to put their name on someone else’s work.

    The deciding factor I think would be how much of the practical was I complete, if it was just that rnav radio issue I would stick with the same guy.
     
  3. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    That's a pretty common fee these days though the fuel should have been on his dime unless you were given the option to come to him. It's pretty common practice to do the approaches at a non towered field so that he can have you do the criteria he wants to see instead of leaving it to a controller. If you didn't like the guy get someone else but as others have said you will probably start from scratch and will be on the hook for another 500 fee.
     
  4. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Sounds like you got shortchanged on your training. I'd fly to Indy and finish up with the same DPE.
     
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  5. 455 Bravo Uniform

    455 Bravo Uniform En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Just practice at an uncontrolled field and try it again, same DPE.

    Being flustered is part of the test, no? Maybe not fair, but part of the realism? It’s a “test” afterall, not a checking off of a list. What if you were in IMC? Had to divert to an uncontrolled field, due to weather mins, mechanical, or passenger issues (sick or upset passenger, or azzhat DPE, same thing).

    Don’t take my response too seriously, it’s just an opinion.
     
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  6. jsstevens

    jsstevens En-Route PoA Supporter

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    I’ll add that the instructor I’m working with warned me that the DPE would do whatever he could to distract me as part of the ride. So some of this could be intentional.
     
  7. RussR

    RussR Cleared for Takeoff

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    Yeah, sorry to say, but from the examples given I don't see anything the DPE did that was too out of the ordinary. Your oral is probably on the long side, but not egregiously so. ATC saying "radar service terminated change to advisory frequency" is a normal everyday transmission. Plus it sounds like he wanted to get you away from your home airport so you weren't flying the same approaches you've flown a hundred times. And he tried to distract you.

    Pretty normal parts of checkrides in my experience, and pretty much what I'd expect.
     
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  8. Salty

    Salty En-Route PoA Supporter

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    How long are we talking about here as far as “timely fashion”?
     
  9. chemgeek

    chemgeek Cleared for Takeoff

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    Yep. This. If you actually use your IR to travel, you will need to be able to fly approaches you have never practiced before, and you should be familiar with routine ATC terminology. It sounds like you may not have filed IFR to uncontrolled airports much or at all in your training? Fix that up and you should be go to go with your completion ride. The DPE and your instructor want you to be safe and confident when you use your instrument rating, although now it may seem like they may be nit picking.
     
  10. Witmo

    Witmo Pattern Altitude

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    I'm not sure why he did a discontinuance/incomplete. Did he fail you or did he discontinue the checkride to be completed on another day. Either way it's more than likely that you wouldn't get credit for anything if you chose to switch to another DPE.
     
  11. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The DPE took you out of your comfort zone, better during a check ride than in actual IMC. Get some more practice and complete the ride with the same DPE.
     
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  12. EppyGA

    EppyGA Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The DPE for my IR did a lot of yelling, trying to upset me and get me to throw up my hands and quit. I just responded "yes sir and no sir" and kept on flying.
     
  13. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    I would have turned to him and said "Aviate, navigate THEN communicate", waited a second and made the call.
     
  14. texasclouds

    texasclouds Cleared for Takeoff

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    Savage. No one should be yelling inside a cockpit unless its an emergency.
     
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  15. Tommar98

    Tommar98 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Well my guess is there are as many different check ride stories as there are pilots and DPE’s. I do think your bigger issue should be with instruction and why someone didn’t spend more time on approaches into uncontrolled airports. I do a lot of those and there are a few more headaches as to monitoring CTAF and announcing position (in a manner an VFR pilot can understand). Also, did DPE go over the planned flight in the ground? This will be approach 1; then hold; we’ll do unusuAl attitudes after that etc?

    FWIW I just did my IR check ride in June at age 61. I thought the DPE I had was fair...my oral was just a little over 90 mins. I guess in the end you have to decide whether you got too much of a bad vibe from the guy to go back to him. My guess is the next DPE may ask what’s up with that and I would guess you’ll start from scratch for the next check ride. A couple more AMU’s (aviation monetary units).


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  16. danhagan

    danhagan Pattern Altitude

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    What am I missing here? Your Class D tells you that every time you leave and are not on FF.

    Real easy in your BEST captain voice ... "Cessna N12345, squawking VFR, C-YA!"
     
  17. genna

    genna Cleared for Takeoff

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    Not usually. Most(or at least large number) Class D do not have radar service to begin with. Without FF/IFR, you typically depart squawk 1200. When you leave their area, you may get "Frequency Change approved" or nothing at all. That's been my experience with most Class D. Some do assign discrete squawk when they get busy.

    But yeah, one should be quite familiar with "radar service terminated, change to advisory frequency" if one takes IR exam or flies with FF at all..
     
  18. Pugs

    Pugs Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Maybe, maybe not. As someone who did my Private instrument after 2500 hours of talking to controllers as an NFO in all sorts of situations I found both my instructor and the DPE playing the controller a bit silly. They are not controllers. They are multi-tasking instruction/evaluation and playing ATC really isn't their primary job so it doesn't flow and they tend to make mistakes from the norm.

    I wish, and suggest, that anyone who is asked/told discontinue would say, "let's press and get as much done as we can". At that point (DPE willing) you are getting checks of things you can do right, you get a feel for what they DPE wants next time and if you do the rest right you get some credit for the next ride. I discontinued my instrument check ride due to exceeding the ILS deflection azimuth limits on my very first approach. He ask what I wanted to do and I said everything we can. We did the non-precision approach, airways nav, Unusual Attitudes, holding, and an RNAV approach. He said everything else was good and well within standards. Come back Wed and fly an ILS so I did and finished it in a .4 flight.

    Having the confidence and time with the DPE also meant a lot to me as I knew the ILS was an anomaly (and still no idea how I ended up so far right!)
     
  19. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

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    Why were you "incomplete"? Personality conflict, but up to that point you had passed? You either failed and elected to stop or you stopped while passing and got an incomplete.
     
  20. Betmerick

    Betmerick Filing Flight Plan

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    I think what happened the DPE sensed a "weakness" in my confidence and exploited it to a point to where I said I had enough. Makes sense as his only goal was to make me a safe IR pilot. On the negative side at my age, I no longer put up with things like I used to (nagging employees, wife, etc) so my confrontational threshold isn't as lengthy as some half my age. I got so mad inside I couldn't see straight!

    Maybe I got my answer on this!! Need to settle down and blow off his commentary!! I have been flying approaches into this airport regularly since and got used to making the radio calls! Plus he said I was weak on my Garmin 430 & S-Tec 50 so I've been working on them as well.
     
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  21. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    He said he wasn't used to the advisory/frequency change which, to me, means his instructor didn't have him fly enough with radar services into untowered fields. "radar service terminated change to advisory" is how I've always heard it in the midwest. Shouldn't have been a mistake in what was said by the DPE. And if you always terminate your approaches into a towered field, you'll never hear that.
     
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  22. danhagan

    danhagan Pattern Altitude

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    Maybe DPE found your weakness and irritated it so you would see where it was when you're on your own in the soup. Hope a controller doesn't get you tweaked when workload is high:eek:
     
  23. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Confidence is not a criterion in the test evaluation. Frankly, I think he's tending to the "stump the chump" type of examiner rather than one who cares about safety.
    Missing an inconsequential radio call response isn't something that would make much of a difference.
     
  24. Tommar98

    Tommar98 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Was it the delay in responding to the “change frequency” call or what would follow? You have to make CTAF calls and make sure you understand what is happening at that airport. It unclear if OP monitored AWOS at airport or CTAF to know what was happening in the pattern. Was that the bigger issue? It seems he was unclear of the entire process transition from approach to local CTAF. I may have misunderstood but that was my read on the problem.


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  25. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    In IACRA do you have a Notice of Discontinuance or a Notice of Disapproval?

    What did you sign at the end?

    And what exactly does it say for the reason for either one?

    All that matters is what was written down. What was said is not only irrelevant but inaccurately worded.

    There’s no such thing as an “incomplete”.
     
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  26. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    2-3/4 hour for the oral is rather standard on an IR test. There is a considerable amount of material the DPE needs to determine you have operational understanding.

    The simulated ATC language he gave you for an approach to an uncontrolled airport is what ATC gives you. Your confusion shows you do not fully understand the ATC system and ATC instructions.

    Your experience is not uncommon for accelerated program applicants.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2019
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  27. Somedudeintn

    Somedudeintn Cleared for Takeoff

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    Fred?
     
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  28. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Apparently, you are not listening. "Change to advisory frequency approved" is permissive, not mandatory. Now if the pilot had blundered into a VFR airport without traffic calls, then that might be problematic. Nothing says (and frequently it is ill-advised), to start changing the radio to the CTAF as soon as ATC cuts you loose.
    That's the most rediculous statement I've ever heard? What are you going to say ATTITPPA?
    You're introducing non-sequitors. What the hell does the AWOS have to do with being told you could switch frequencies. Around here I'd like to have the weather and notams (and ATC will often ask if I have them) well prior to being dumped by ATC.
     
  29. Tommar98

    Tommar98 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Not sure what the disconnect is here. My comments had to do with an IFR check-ride. I was trying to address the larger issue of transitioning from approach to arrival at uncontrolled field. I guess my training was different.

    If I’m flying the RNAV approach into an uncontrolled airport ATC gives me the “change to advisory frequency approved” - are you suggesting I just do nothing? That’s my cue to transition to CTAF before I barrel into the traffic pattern. Granted that’s probably 5-6 miles out but I need to be ready to communicate. I made the comment about AWOS just as a procedure issue. I was taught that I needed weather prior to arrival. Sure ATC will ask - but this was a check-ride so I was commenting as to whether or not that was a bigger picture issue the DPE was looking at.

    As far as not switching to CTAF right away. Actually I would have that on com 2 and monitoring it before they switch me over. Just not sure what you mean that calling the CTAF is ridiculous? I’m missing something here.


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  30. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    I bet the “change to advisory frequency” was preceded by the DPE noticing the candidate wasn’t prepping properly to monitor and enter an uncontrolled airport pattern at the end of an approach...

    It’s really easy sitting in the right seat with no pressure on to see where a student is getting further and further behind... or someone you’re acting as Safety Pilot for.

    Examiners easily notice these things.

    “Let’s see if he’s just waiting for the controller to release him, or if he has no idea what frequency his radios should already be tuned to or ready to flip-flop to...”
     
  31. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    No, that's my indication that the ATC facility no longer needs to communicate with me directly. It is not a "cue" for anything else. I think you are inserting a lot of "well if's" into a situation that the examinee hasn't indicated were exactly a problem. Yes, it possibly indicates holes in his training, but unless he'd have blasted into a possibly VFR pattern without any traffic calls, I'd not make it a failing offense.
     
  32. Tommar98

    Tommar98 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Well it’s possible I read more into it. Just trying to make sense of a “fail” on a radio call. So I took the liberty of elaborating on possibilities. That’s the POA way.


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  33. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    P.S. I realized my post may have insinuated that the candidate was definitely behind things. The other reason examiners may develop an opinion a candidate is way behind things is lack of verbalization.

    You won’t ever need to tell anyone what you’re doing minute to minute almost ever outside of a checkride or two pilot cockpit, but for the ride, you have to tell them what you’re doing and thinking... otherwise they might get the wrong opinion from a number of “out of order” things you did for a real reason... nobody reads minds very well. So a pattern may be judged.
     
  34. chemgeek

    chemgeek Cleared for Takeoff

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    Since none of us were there during the checkride, we don't really know what exactly happened (or didn't happen). I would suspect that the DPE would expect the pilot to take certain actions and make acknowledgements after the final clearance instructions for the approach. If those didn't happen clearly and cleanly, or the candidate looked like deer in the headlights, then that could be grounds for a disapproval, I suppose.

    My home airport is in the sticks, so I nearly always get to fly the full approach. ATC expects you to acknowledge altitude restrictions, approach clearance, and cancellation instructions (if issued) in their last call. A candidate could make several mis-steps at this point: switching to 1200 on the squawk (if filed IFR and not canceling), failing to acknowledge clearance or altitude restrictions until established, failing to switch to advisory and making an understandable position call while monitoring for potential traffic, or wandering off the approach course or altitudes while sorting it out. I wouldn't expect the pilot to switch to CTAF immediately, but as soon as everything else was sorted for the approach.

    As others have mentioned, it's not a bad thing during a checkride or IPC to talk or explain your actions or your plan of actions, just so the instructor/DPE doesn't think you have just "frozen up." Certainly, I've had WTF moments with the GNS-430 during an IPC when trying to set up an approach, and I've explained to the instructor how I'm going to sort it out. (Lesson #100 for the umpteenth time, I should know better: never, never, NEVER use vectors-to-final to set up an approach on the GNS box, even if ATC swears on a stack of bibles they are going to vector you to the final approach course...because the minute you set that up, they are going change their mind and vector you direct to the IF--not the IAF--that is not displaying on your screen anymore until you start over and load and activate the full approach while looking for the IF leg to activate direct-to on the flight plan page. That takes a while to sort out because it's not a V-T-F or a full-on-you-own approach, but a bastardization in between. It wouldn't normally happen in real IFR, but frequently happens on training flights.)
     
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  35. Betmerick

    Betmerick Filing Flight Plan

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    I used the word incomplete because I did not complete the test. I got a Notice of Discontinuance. I think the whole thread got off the topic I was wanting info on...... being can I use another DPE and if so, would I get credit for what I made it through. I could care less if I had to re-do the start of my XC by intercepting a radial but I am certainly not wanting to go through another oral ordeal like he put me through! Obviously I made it through the 2 3/4 hour oral and also with only having to go into my FAR-AIM once. My buddy went the day before but with another examiner..... 45 min tops!
     
  36. dmspilot

    dmspilot En-Route

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    What is the reason stated for the discontinuance?
     
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  37. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Final Approach

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    Yes.
    Depends. Talk to the examiner you’re thinking of using.

    Both were answered in post #2. Off topic is fair game after that. ;)
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2019
  38. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    ^^^^ this.

    We got half the question answered. :)
     
  39. Betmerick

    Betmerick Filing Flight Plan

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    Sorry I haven't followed the thread since I was the one which initiated it.

    The Examiner failed me because I went full deflection. Why....... because when we were setting up for the RNAV he had been trying to constantly shake my confidence by continually referring to me as "Captain" and other snide comments. When he saw my CDI start moving to the left he initiated incessant chatter to once again throw me off my game. By then I was sick of his **** and once I went full deflection...... I told him I was done!

    Yes I get the fact that you have to be able to take the distractions but in real life this man wouldn't be beside me rambling away at stupid crap! I would insist on a sterile cockpit on all approaches!!

    One last note........ he prefaced the ride by saying "I never thought you would last the oral so let's see how you do in the air!"
     
  40. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    Well, you really flunked the how to deal with an ahole test, but it sometimes takes a few tries to figure that out.

    One of the most valuable lessons I learned in my Instrument training was that when I get in that seat and start that engine it is my sole responsibility to get that airplane to its destination, no one else matters, not ATC, not my instructor, not the dpe sitting next to me. It's my job and my life depends on it. So it is perfectly acceptable to tell the dpe to stfu, although I would do it nicely. Something like, "that's nice (even if it isn't nice), but I'm trying to fly an airplane here, sterile cockpit". You let him get away with it, you should have stopped him, you took it and he still failed you, remember that next time. Just give him a shush, if he's really got you rattled ask ATC to abandon the approach, a few delay vectors, then tell him he needs to stfu unless it's an emergency and let you fly the plane. You have to be able to do this by yourself and make good decisions under adverse conditions. I hope you pass your next try.