Reducing Hobbs/CFI time during training

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by Jason608, Mar 21, 2015.

  1. Jason608

    Jason608 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I recently switched flight schools to one that is much more expensive, so I am trying to reduce my time on the ground. (C172)

    -How long does it take you on average from Pre-Flight to wheels up? Assuming no taxi delay. (I had one CFI tell me it takes him 6 mins to get in the air, I'm closer to 25mins)

    -I have moved a few checklist items to before start. I am now considering moving "Check Flight Controls", use a handheld radio for ATIS and then initially set ALT and HI before start.

    Thoughts?

    Jason
     
  2. write-stuff

    write-stuff En-Route

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    I doubt that moving "Check Flight Controls" to the walkaround portion of a preflight will save you any time. It takes less than 5 seconds.

    The absolutely best way to minimize the amount of time you spend on your CFI's meter is to study your brains out at home. This will result in shorter lessons and fewer of them.
     
  3. RotorDude

    RotorDude Pattern Altitude

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    Consider that there have been accidents where a rock (possibly blown up during taxi or runup) jammed the elevator and caused a stall and crash after takeoff. Checking controls free and clear should be done as part of the runup check. Doing a check during preflight is good practice, but less critical.
     
  4. jesse

    jesse Administrator Management Council Member

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    You'll get faster with experience. Right now the time on the ground is just an important as the time in the air. Many people have died by rushing their runup and not mentally preparing for their departure before they push the throttle forward.

    I absolutely *do not* think about the Hobbs meter or money being spent after I climb in an airplane. I used to, but finally beat that out of myself, it's an unsafe practice to obsess over trying to shave a tenth off.
     
  5. Unit74

    Unit74 Final Approach

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    You still NEED the hours, so what's the rush? My plane has a oil pressure switch, so that helps. Rental planes w/o one are milking you though.
     
  6. tyndall

    tyndall Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You're so concerned about the cost that your head is not where it should be.

    Ask the CFI how he does it in one-forth of your time. Familiarity with something increases speed. If it's taking you longer it's because you are still learning. Pushing it faster would be cutting corners.

    At most, the checklist items you mentioned would save a couple of bucks. You'll still need to check ATIS one last time and adjust again if anything changes anyway.

    Either find a cheaper school or a better job so your mind is on your training.
     
  7. jsstevens

    jsstevens Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    For me (even in training) I only turned on the master when I was ready to start anyway. (OK, I turn it on just long enough to put the flaps down in an electric flap plane. And check the fuel gauges.)

    Oil pressure switch would never have saved me a tenth even. It's 5-10 seconds between master on and start. On shutdown it's avionics off, mixture off, mags off, master off. Again 5-10 seconds max.

    John
     
  8. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Find which breaker the Hobbs is on, and trip it.
     
  9. Bonchie

    Bonchie Cleared for Takeoff

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    From engine start (that's when the master comes on and the Hobbs starts ticking), it takes me about 5 minutes. But my airport is 2400 foot long, single runway, with little taxi time and I'm always first in line.

    I'm not sure what you are doing for 25 minutes.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2015
  10. Jason608

    Jason608 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thanks for the responses. I agree checking the flight controls before run up is not the way to go and does not save much time. As to the comment above, that's what I have been thinking about. I probably spend too much time double checking everything. I record ATIS, listen again, and confirm what I wrote is correct. Then check ATIS at run up yet again. I probably spend 5mins just checking the condition of the airplane before even going through the checklist. My CFI says speed will come with time.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2015
  11. RalphInCA

    RalphInCA Cleared for Takeoff

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    Your see if I is correct – speed will come with time. Rushing your way through a lesson is no way to learn. you need to have your head completely in the game before you fly and in the beginning this takes time.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  12. rocketflyer84

    rocketflyer84 Line Up and Wait

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    No. Unless you're leaving the master on for long periods without the engine running this doesn't save money. Total time with master on and engine not on is rarely more than a few seconds. Oil pressure switch engages moments after the engine fires up. Only major discrepancy is if the engine won't start.

    In terms of saving time it's important to not rush it. However unless you are stuck in a queue it shouldn't take 25 mins. Ask your CFI to watch next time and point out where you can move smoother. Don't rush but it may just be getting into a more even flow with your checklists as you do the runup and other pre-takeoff tasks.
     
  13. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    For me, 5-10min depending on the plane.

    Gets better with time.

    Like the other said, I wouldn't worry about it.

    Also most schools CFI don't charge ground, pre and post flight brief (sometimes), and Hobbs time. I've never been charged for my CFIs time while preflighting, nor I have, as a CFI, charged for preflight time.
     
  14. TMetzinger

    TMetzinger Final Approach

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    Honestly - if you're trying to pinch pennies on your training, you may not be able to afford flying. If you're worrying about costs, you're not learning as effectively as you could be.
     
  15. Jason608

    Jason608 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That's true, neither CFI is overcharging or really charging during preflight.
     
  16. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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    25 minutes sounds rather long, but turning on the master, setting radios, obtaining WX, pre-setting flight instruments and trim, might save you 1/10 on the hobbs.
     
  17. Jason608

    Jason608 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Not pinching pennies. But do want to be efficient with my time and the CFIs/rental cost.
     
  18. seand

    seand Pre-Flight

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    Fly often. You'll spend money faster but spend less in total. Stretching it out between lessons is a good way to increase your total spending on relearning things.
     
  19. TMetzinger

    TMetzinger Final Approach

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    Great - first, talk with your CFI, and you can work out ways to minimize hobbs time. When doing instrument flight stuff it's easy to do all your programming and getting weather and clearance before engine start on a handheld. Primary training there's not a lot of stuff to do between engine start and departure. So if you let your CFI know you want to try and do all the ground school in a office or classroom, rather than with the engine running.

    Best wishes.
     
  20. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Speaking as one with over 40 years as a CFI... :yeahthat:
     
  21. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Just in case you can't tell when Henning is kidding...


    ...Henning is kidding. Mostly that's just a good way to get your rental privileges there revoked.
     
  22. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    And that is why having the master on without the engine running doesn't run the Hobbs. In fact, at most FBO's/flight schools, the Hobbs wiring bypasses the master switch entirely and runs any time the engine is running and only when the engine is running. The idea is to prevent folks from shorting the FBO by turning off the master in flight.
     
  23. DrPappy

    DrPappy Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have rented a bunch of poorly-maintained planes over the years, but for some reason the Hobbs meter is the one thing that always works flawlessly. The Hobbs must be a top priority on their 100-hour inspections.
     
  24. Jason608

    Jason608 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Fine, I removed "Disable Hobbs Meter" from my checklist. :)
     
  25. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Not surprising. The Hobbs meter does have a direct and significant impact on revenue, and that really does tend to get an FBO's attention.
     
  26. JimNtexas

    JimNtexas Pattern Altitude

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    The whole flight is part of the experience, including start, taxi, fly, land, taxi back, shut down.

    Enjoy the whole experience, in the big scheme of things you'll lose more than you gain trying to rush into the air.
     
  27. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Final Approach

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    Can you get access to sit in the airplane on the ramp and run your checklists without battery/engine power or your CFI in the airplane with you? I used to let my students do that to get more comfortable with procedures.

    Don't flip switches or move the throttle, just go through your checklists, touch each item, and simulate the procedure.
     
  28. Sgu2-22

    Sgu2-22 Pre-Flight

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    If you only fly the 172 then you should develop a flow (If you haven't done so already.) Do everything from memory. Then run the checklist after the run-up is complete. The read and do method is slow and if you rush it you might miss something.
     
  29. Jason608

    Jason608 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Good idea. I started doing the pre flight from memory then verified via my checklist. I will try to start doing the engine start up from memory, then verify with my list right before my ATC taxi call.
     
  30. rocketflyer84

    rocketflyer84 Line Up and Wait

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    If they do bypass the master then I sure hope they still pass it through a breaker. If not then it's a potential electrical safety issue if the thing shorts and there's no way to disable it. If they do then anyone with a mild understand of the planes electrical system could still disable it if they were set on doing so, unfortunately.

    Most rentals I've seen also have a tach meter either under the cowling or in the cockpit and both times are recorded to help with maintenance records. If one is messing with the Hobbs it would start to show up there, although granted a 10th would be hard to notice.
     
  31. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    The Hobbs is a preflight-no go item.
     
  32. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

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    This. If you come unprepared, your instructor will spoon feed the info to you and you will pay for it.
     
  33. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    Two ways to reduce flight expenses:

    1) study beforehand, come prepared to discuss, ask questions on the ground, then go execute.

    2) fly more often. The more often you fly, the less you'll forget and need to repeat.

    Good luck, and keep us posted with your progress. We need more people flying!
     
  34. Topper

    Topper Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Can you do the preflight prior to the instructor arriving? If not now, you may get to that point soon. I understand not wanting to pay an instructor to stand around while you are doing a preflight, however when it comes to flying, instructors are the cheapest part. (No, I am not an instructor and will never be one).

    Jim
     
  35. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    From startup to takeoff I will concur on the 6 minutes, but my home base is a small uncontrolled field. Checking flight controls hardly takes any time, but it can also be accomplished during the preflight (moving ailerons and looking inside at flight controls). You could set altimeter to field elevation, AI centered and turn your radios on and try to get ATIS before start, but then again those dont take too long but you might be able to save yourself a few minutes.

    Also one way you can look at it is... The more hobbs time you get the more TT you will be able to log in your logbook!
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2015
  36. TUPilot

    TUPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Best suggestions you are going to get. The reality is that procedures have generally evolved the way they have for a reason, and trying to cut corners to save money can lead to unforeseen issues; the example of flight controls getting jammed by a foreign object during taxi is a good one.

    Working on better understanding the checklist and procedures and practicing them (either sitting in the plane when it is not in use or at home with a little imagination) is going to do far more to save time than trying to change the procedures themselves and run much less risk of getting you into trouble.
     
  37. Theboys

    Theboys Line Up and Wait

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    Seems normal to me to initially spend time checking out the machine and weather that in initial stages of training, you are pretty sure is going to kill you. I think bigger problem is to not use checklists. My wife is like you in that I can read a book while she does her checklists, while I don't always use them. She hardly ever misses anything, while I might. Find myself using checklist and letting engine warm little while double checking more often. Not wholly a bad thing to take your time.
     
  38. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    On my Tiger, it was (before I removed the Hobbs meter) a well-hidden in-line fuse.
     
  39. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Usually yes, although until you reach a certain point in your training your instructor will want you to repeat the inspection under his/her observation. Later on, your instructor may be willing to delegate that task to you and only do an abbreviated inspection him/herself. In addition, the security rules at some airports do not permit Student Pilots to be on the ramp or have the aircraft keys without supervision, but that's a very limited number of airports.
     
  40. JimNtexas

    JimNtexas Pattern Altitude

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    It's been a few years since I've rented, but my experience is the opposite. The Hobbs is turned on with the master switch. Because why leave that extra .1 on the table?