Looking for some guidance.

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by odie451, Jul 22, 2020.

  1. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel En-Route

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    You'll be fine. Enjoy yourself. And please report back with how you liked it.
     
  2. Deelee

    Deelee Pattern Altitude

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    Have fun and enjoy every minute of it!
     
  3. kath

    kath Administrator Management Council Member

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    Sooooooooooo..... how did it go?????

    :cheerswine:
     
  4. odie451

    odie451 Pre-Flight

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    I really wasn't anxious until, I was walking to the plane with the CFI. The aircraft was a 172N (N733JA). The owner was flying the plane before I was supposed to go up, he mentioned that everything was good to go, since he just had a 50 hour oil change done on it. The Jay the CFI I was assigned was probably in his kid to late 20's. We did the preflight, which was about 10 minutes, then when everything looked good we were ready to start the engine and taxi to the end of runway 24 to take flight. Jay had me push the throttle in for full power, when were were around 60 knots, he had me pullback in the home and we were airborne. He had me fly the plane to 3000 feet, and we did some basic turns. After doing that we climbed to 4000 feet and set rpm to 2200 for level flight. We did that for a little bit, then flew back to the airport where he took over and landed the plane.

    A few takeaways I experienced from this,

    1. Being my first time, the intimidation factor was definitely there.
    2. I kept wanting to push the nose down to see the horizon, maybe I was sitting to low.
    3. I looked more at the gauges than I did outside the windshield, it was too hazy anyways.
    4. When we were on the ground, I had a tendency to want to steer the plane with the yoke, which obviously doesn't work.
    5. I didn't realize how hard you need to push on the pedals to steer the plane, I thought it would be much easier.
    6. Do I want to get a PPL still, most DEFINITELY.


    It was fun, I'm glad I did it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2020
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  5. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel En-Route

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    While normal, that's all you. No one was trying to intimidate you.
    Its your first flight. Give it time.
    Very typical for those whose only previous experience is flight sims. It'll change so don't read too much into it. Sooner or later you'll come to realize the windshield and the feeling in your butt provides everything you need to know about the current condition of the flight.
    Probably about the only moment of humor that CFI's get. Everyone, and I mean everyone does this on their first lesson (and CFI's never cease to find it funny). Second lesson is better. By the third lesson its typically non-existent.
    {QUOTE]5. I didn't realize how hard you need to push on the petals to steer the plane, I thought it would be much easier.[/QUOTE] Never gave this much thought so can't comment. Suspect you'll be in the same boat by lesson 2 or lesson 3 at the latest.
    Very very awesome. Flying and learning to do it isn't for everyone. I suspect you're hooked. My congratulations and condolences.

    Seriously though, savor every moment of this. I got all my certs (instrument/commercial) and then I tried to make flying my job and I came to hate every aspect of it.

    But even at my worst when I never wanted to see the inside of a cockpit again, I still had fond memories of every single lesson I took during my private training.

    There is nothing you will ever spend this amount of money on that will come close to giving you the memories you're going to get from this training. I envy you getting to start on this wonderful journey.
     
  6. murphey

    murphey Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The Cessna aircraft have rather large panels and the glareshield is high, maybe even for you, over 6 ft. If you’re not comfortable seeing over the panel, try moving the seat a bit closer or even get a small cushion to put behind your lower back. That will move you a bit closer without moving the seat itself.
     
  7. smv

    smv Pattern Altitude

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    Not all discovery flights are done by CFIs and therefore cannot be logged as training.
     
  8. smv

    smv Pattern Altitude

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    For the first one or two flights I will often cover all of the instruments. I do this to stress the fact that none of them are necessary for the airplane to fly. They learn quickly to control attitude (and therefore altitude and heading) simply by looking out the window and occasionally glancing at their references. Sometimes, if I notice them staring at the instruments during later flights, I will not hesitate to break out the suction cup soap dishes again. :p

    I am known to say, "You do not need that tiny 3" artificial horizon. You have the actual horizon right there!" :D
     
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  9. Kritchlow

    Kritchlow Final Approach

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    Really?? I had no idea.
     
  10. odie451

    odie451 Pre-Flight

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    It would have been great for me to look at the actual horizon; I just couldn't see it. It felt like I was sitting to low in the plane. Felt like a little old lady that can barely see over the dashboard.
     
  11. smv

    smv Pattern Altitude

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    There is more than one way to see the horizon.
     
  12. farmrjohn

    farmrjohn Pre-takeoff checklist

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    "4. When we were on the ground, I had a tendency to want to steer the plane with the yoke, which obviously doesn't work.
    Probably about the only moment of humor that CFI's get. Everyone, and I mean everyone does this on their first lesson (and CFI's never cease to find it funny). Second lesson is better. By the third lesson its typically non-existent."

    Unless one is flying an Ercoupe
     
  13. odie451

    odie451 Pre-Flight

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    Talked with an EAA member about getting my ppl. He suggested that I goto the airport that is closest to me. Which is Cable airport, 3 miles from me. He also suggested 2-3 times a week, to retain the knowledge. He also have me a name of a doctor to do a consultation with.

    The place I took my intro flight was a club. Their dues are $200 initial fee, then $20 a month. They have 6 planes, 3 of them being 172 models. The pet hour cost for the 172's, range from $124 to $134 per hour wet. The CFI cost is $50 per hour. Are these costs reasonable.

    Another club that would be out of my way, Has a 172 for 80 dry, a 182 for 104 dry, and a Cherokee 235 for 94 dry.

    Is there a way to compare plane rentals, in respect to set vs dry rates.
     
  14. smv

    smv Pattern Altitude

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    Here's how I do it...

    In my experience, your average 172 will burn 8-9 gallons per hour. I typically do the mental math for long-range rough planning at 10 gph to keep things simple.

    That said, the wet/dry comparison would all depend on a couple of factors: The price of the fuel you purchase and how agressively you lean the engine. Using your numbers above, an average of $4/ga for AvGas, and 9 gph burn rate, the "Dry" 172 would run you roughly $116/hr.

    You can get more precise numbers through: 1) the POH performance tables. 2) Talking to pilots with tail-number-specific experience. 3) Personal hands-on with each plane to learn their actual burn rates. Then do the math.
     
  15. Jim K

    Jim K Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    That sounds surprisingly reasonable for socal. In nowhere central Illinois I'm paying 70 dry for the archer or Dakota. All the Cfi's I use charge 40/hr. You can find fuel prices on airnav.com. As smv mentioned a 172 should burn 9-10, a 182 or Cherokee 235 will be around 14.

    You might consider the club's 'step up' planes in your decision. A 172 or warrior starts to feel pretty slow when you actually start going places. Having access to a 182 or Dakota once you get your ticket is a really nice option.
     
  16. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel En-Route

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    The more often you go, the quicker you'll get done both in terms of calendar and in terms of hours in your logbook. When I did my private, I took one lesson a week until I soloed and then I did two per week. It took about 3 months and about 45 hours in my logbook to get me to the checkride.


    That doesn't sound too bad. I'd want to get a feel for how busy they are and how they do their maintenance. Having 3 172's is a good thing. But it won't help much if 1 of them is always down for maintenance and the club is so busy that the other two are booked solid or nearly so. If you're going to do 2-3 lessons per week, you're going to want airplanes to be available at the times your schedule allows you to fly.

    Those rates are also not bad (assuming initiation fees and monthly dues are low). But they only have one 172. Probably best to stay away from the constant speed props and heavier weights of the other planes until you get through the check ride. So if their only 172 is booked or broken, your lessons won't happen.
     
  17. noahfong

    noahfong Pre-takeoff checklist

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    First, I join the others in praising you for your ambition and excitement on learning to fly. Welcome to aviation. Learning to fly is really learning two things: A lot of new knowledge (facts, theories, rules) AND a new SKILL (flying the airplane). I sense you will not have much difficulty with knowledge. BUT, although you can do it, you will have a harder time with the SKILL portion than someone who is younger. Before you DISMISS ME, let me say that I'm much older than you (67). Although I learned to fly (private pilot) in my twenties, I didn't advance in my ratings until I was in my fifties. When I was 62, I decided to go for the airlines and got my multi-engine and multi-engine instructor ratings. At 63, got hired by the largest Regional and got my ATP and type rating. So, I know what it takes and I know what it is like to be old.

    Flying is very much like playing a musical instrument. If you play, you know there is knowledge (theory, reading music) and skill (actually playing the instrument). The skill portion requires the brain to re-wire itself and form new pathways so that you can play without actively thinking. This is necessary because you will have to focus on reading the music, conductor, etc. In flying, it's position, air traffic control, situational awareness, etc. Like recovering from injuries just take longer as you get older, the brain takes longer to form these pathways. So, it will take more effort, both in terms of energy and duration. But you CAN do it. Just don't quit.

    In my new hire class of 30, 5 of us were older than 45. I was at least 10 years older than the next younger guy. all of us struggled significantly more than our younger colleagues. All of us made it through the classroom training. Only two of us made it through sims and IOE (initial operating experience) which is in-cockpit training. SKILLS training. There rest didn't make it because they ran out of energy or couldn't put out the effort or just got discouraged.

    This is getting long, so I'll add more in subsequent posts.
     
  18. murphey

    murphey Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I didn’t either. But the pilot must have a commercial, right? Afterall, money is being exchanged?
     
  19. noahfong

    noahfong Pre-takeoff checklist

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    One of the most important aspects about learning to fly is your attitude. As they say in airline training, "attitude is everything." It will be vitally important to listen to your instructor. I've had older students (and am also old) and the tendency is to disbelieve in favor of, "that can't be true.... that's too hard - I'll do it another way... " Being older tends to give a person a, "I've always be successful because I did it my way!" mentality. If you do, you will need to suppress this tendency and do it the way you're taught vs. how you think it should be done.

    On what you said, I guarentee there was a visible horizon. You can bet your instructor was flying based on it. You probably couldn't see it because it wasn't what you expected to see. But it was there. You will need to learn that things look differently when you're up there. That may be the first skill you need to learn. I'm almost a foot shorter than you and I can see the horizon without a seat cushion.

    I know I sound harsh but don't intend to be. Just don't want to waste words. It is admirable for you to want to learn to fly. Really. But you need to know what you're really up against to be successful. Good luck!
     
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  20. chemgeek

    chemgeek Pattern Altitude

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    This is definitely not an age-related phenomenon. It is, as you say, an attitude issue related to accepting reality. Some of my undergrads (a very small minority) were thoroughly convinced that certain topics are just being taught in an unnecessarily difficult way, and that there must be an easier, simpler way to understand these topics. These students don't believe me when I assure them that after 30 years of grappling with a topic as an expert in both the topical area and pedagogy, if there WAS a simpler way to present it I WOULD be using it, as there is nothing in it for me to make it more difficult than it needs to be for them or me. But, hope springs eternal among novices for looking for an "easier" way --that doesn't work. Some aspects of flying are like chemistry--there is no substitute for correct understanding.
     
  21. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Next time you fly, ask the instructor to show you how to adjust the seat height. Set it prior to engine start.
     
  22. smv

    smv Pattern Altitude

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    Money is not always being exchanged. It is not unheard of for a flying club to offer free discovery flights.
     
  23. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    There are flying clubs that resemble flight schools. This is especially true of large clubs. I belong to one of these. There are also FBOs that call themselves clubs, but I don't think of them as genuine clubs because the "members" don't get to vote on anything.

    You might be thinking of small flying clubs, which often involve a relatively small number of pilots who share in the ownership of one or more airplanes.
     
  24. Stan Cooper

    Stan Cooper Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Cable (CCB) is a non-towered airport with one runway and Brackett (POC) which is close by does have a control tower and two runways. The Los Angeles basin is very busy airspace, and both of those airports stay pretty busy. Learning how to handle radio communications in busy airspace is important, and if Brackett is equally convenient I would recommend doing your training there. With two runways you'd likely spend less time on the ground waiting for traffic with the engine running. Just my $.02.

    With my great nephew at Brackett.
    beckett and stan at kpoc 620 11feb2018.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2020
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  25. odie451

    odie451 Pre-Flight

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    Question regarding training.
    If I am able to allocate 2-3 days a week to actual in the plane and CFI, should I calculate it at a 1:1 ratio or more like a 1:2 ratio.
    Example: reserve 172 for 1 hour and CFI for 1 hour, or reserve 172 for 1 hour and CFI for 2 hours.

    Also does 1 hour on an aircraft rental mean from takeoff to landing, or is it more along the lines of from signing out the plane to signing the plane back in.
     
  26. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Rental charges on an airplane are usually per the Hobbs meter, an hour meter that is most often tied to the engine running (start up to shut down). SOME places charge per sign-out/sign-in so you end up paying for pre-flight and other on-the-ground time.

    CFI charges should, in my opinion, be based on the CFI time. That may be 15-30 minutes prior to the flight and another block after the flight. You can get that info from your CFI. Some CFIs charge a one hour flight as a one hour lesson, and I think they are really giving you a break if they do that. They almost always will spend more time with you and since that's "lesson time" they really should get paid for it.

    In my experience, book the plane and the CFI for the same blocks of time. But your CFI and flight school will let you know the best way to work that out.
     
  27. odie451

    odie451 Pre-Flight

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    I'm guessing booking the plane is different from time on the Hobbs meter.

    I'm trying to calculate how much should i budget per day when I am at the flight school for training.
     
  28. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    For a one hour lesson (some will go longer, but my brain was saturated after about an hour):

    The CFIs on this board will be way better at this than I am:

    I typically figured an extra half hour for pre-flight since I might also need fuel. You'll generally pay only for the actual engine time, but for booking the time on the schedule you'll need to allow for the time you will need hands-on. Give yourself enough time to not be rushed either before or after the flight, but don't pad it so much the next renter has to wait for the scheduling block to open back up. There will be times the previous renter/student is running late, it happens, and it isn't always his or her fault.

    Your CFI can help you estimate this.
     
  29. brcase

    brcase Pattern Altitude

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    <snip>
    A few takeaways I experienced from this,

    1. Being my first time, the intimidation factor was definitely there.
    normal, especially if you haven't been around small aircraft and pilots.
    2. I kept wanting to push the nose down to see the horizon, maybe I was sitting to low.
    likely sitting higher or on a cushion would help
    3. I looked more at the gauges than I did outside the windshield, it was too hazy anyways.
    normal, tell my students most of the gauges are pilot entertainment, But a Nintendo in the panel probably would make the passengers feel very good:)
    4. When we were on the ground, I had a tendency to want to steer the plane with the yoke, which obviously doesn't work.
    Normal
    5. I didn't realize how hard you need to push on the petals to steer the plane, I thought it would be much easier.
    This varies from airplane to airplane
    6. Do I want to get a PPL still, most DEFINITELY.
    Awesome

    It was fun, I'm glad I did it.

    Brian
    CFIIG/ASEL
     
  30. brcase

    brcase Pattern Altitude

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    typical lessons for me I book a two hours block and plan for about 1 hour of flight time.
    Will vary from instructor to instructor, I might be a bit on the low side for the block time.
    For me it would be pay 2 hours of instruction and 1 hour of flight time for most lessons.
    later in you training you will have a few cross country flights that will cost significantly more.
    You can always call the instructor or school and ask them what is typical.

    Again for me I generally tell my students the national average is 65 hours.
    So the plane rental cost is easy to calculate.
    If you figure 65hrs to 100 hours of instruction you will be in the ball park on instruction cost. It varies by instructor and student, after few lessons you will get a feel of how much instruction per lesson you will get/pay for.
    How long will it take you? how much fast can you log and pay for 65hrs of instuctuction and probably 40 to 80 hrs of ground/self study.
    Brian
    CFIIG/ASEL
     
  31. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

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    Many planes have articulating seats that you can crank up higher. Check this next time you fly. Either way, get yourself a seat cushion and use it. You will learn much faster when you can see out. Yeah, you can learn to fly and land without being able to see well, but it's SOOO much easier when you can see.
     
  32. Ryan F.

    Ryan F. Cleared for Takeoff

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    Good luck and enjoy. GA needs pilots... in other words... we need you.
     
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  33. Rgbeard

    Rgbeard Pattern Altitude

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    oh, just FYI.

    Flowers have petals.
    Other mechanical things have pedals.
     
  34. RonP

    RonP Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Odie451,

    We ALL try to steer on the ground with the yoke our first time taxiing! When I take a first timer up no matter how many times I go over steering with the rudder pedals they still try to steer with the yoke. It is the only time there is some levity during the flight. After a few times I have them place their hands on the dashboard top left and right of the yoke. That seems to force steering with the rudder pedals.

    One mantra I tell first timers to repeat with regards to using the horizon to fly level is, “Too much sky, nose is high. Too much ground nose is down.” It does seem to work.

    My one question for what you reported may be semantics regarding “...how hard you need to push the rudder pedals...” It has been a number of years since I flew a 172 but I remember the rudder pedals are not connected directly to the nose wheel. The connection to the nose wheel is transferred via a bungee arrangement.

    Therefore in a 172 while still or taxiing you should easily be able to move the rudder pedals to their extremes with little resistance. This allows holding some rudder when landing in a crosswind and the nose wheel will track straight. (172 guys correct me if I am wrong to not mislead odie541)

    Piper’s have a hard link from the rudder pedals to the nose wheel. You can’t move the rudder pedals unless the airplane is moving unless you use lots of raw force which can be damaging to the linkage. When holding rudder when landing it is advisable to neutralize the rudder before setting the nose wheel down since the nose wheel will be turned slightly.

    Maybe due to the 172’s bungee arrangement on the nose wheel you might have been experiencing “how far“ you need to move the rudder pedals when taxiing to steer as opposed to “how hard” you need to push the rudder pedals.

    Lastly advice I was given by my pilot cousin when I started lessons was to occasionally take a moment to look out the window and say to yourself “holy crap, I’m flying an airplane!”. Something most people never get to do.

    As the WXBRIEF people say ,”Pilot reports are always welcomed”. Keep us abreast of your progress.