Sport Pilot license training in non-LSA?

Discussion in 'Home Builders and Sport Pilots' started by Oso Viejo, Jul 29, 2016.

  1. Oso Viejo

    Oso Viejo Filing Flight Plan

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    Oso Viejo
    I'm interested in pursuing a SPL as it meets pretty much all the reasons I'd like to fly. However, not a lot of options in my area for training. Can some (most?) of the hours required be flown in a non-SLA plane such as the ubiquitous C-150 or C-172s?
     
  2. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Final Approach

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    Light and Sporty Guy
    Why not? If you have a medical then you could even solo. If you don't have the medical, then you obviously can't do your solo work in non-LSA aircraft.

    Of course, if you have (or can get) a medical, it likely makes more sense to just get the Private...
     
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  3. gacoon

    gacoon Pre-Flight

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    You could do it in a larger aircraft - but you are going to find that the larger ones are easier to land/handle in the wind. Lots of examples of old guys moving down to LSA and having all kinds of trouble handling these light planes. If you do it with a larger aircraft be sure you get adequate check out and training in an LSA - just don't go out on a dead calm day - try to get some experience in some wind and then set your personal minimums.
     
  4. exncsurfer

    exncsurfer Cleared for Takeoff

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    the artist formerly known as: jimbilly
    I considered this before starting my flight training. No LSA to rent in my area. Ended up going for PPL. I would say go take some lessons up to the point of solo. Then weigh whether or not you want to go for PPL or SPL. If you still want SPL for some reason, figure out where you'll rent an LSA to do your check ride prep and check ride in.

    What are your reasons for wanting SPL? There aren't many compelling reasons:
    medical - good reason for many
    cost - possibly cheaper, there is no guarantee you will use up less hours/funds. you have to be proficient and there isn't that much less to learn vs. PPL.
     
  5. Oso Viejo

    Oso Viejo Filing Flight Plan

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    Oso Viejo
    I'm 61, grew up in San Antonio, father and grand father worked at Kelly AFB and have been around airplanes all my life. Always wanted to fly just to experience flight itself but seemed to never have the time or funds what with raising a family and all. Well, finally getting closer to maybe having a little time and money (youngest just finished college) and have started dreaming of flying again.

    Basically, I just want to be able to at least give flying a try. I don't anticipate having enough disposable income to justify owning a plane given the fixed costs of storage, annuals, insurance, etc. Don't have a great deal of interest or need to travel within relatively easy reach of a typical single , either. I'm guessing I wouldn't fly more than a couple of times per month and for only an hour or two at a time just to scratch that itch. No need for IFR, not interested in night flying, probably rarely take anyone with me. So... the LSA seems a better fit for the short term. I understand that whatever hours I accumulated could apply to a PPL, so I don't see any downside.

    I live in the Dallas area. Just browsing various web sites, it seems most flight schools assert that you will take at least 50% longer than the minimum hours required in order to achieve the necessary proficiency. Does this seem reasonable? Don't think my wife would be on board with spending $9-12,000 for a PPL if that's the case. I just don't want to be like one of my best friends who took a year or so back in our 30s to get his PPL then has never flown again after his check ride.

    I should note, the concept of the very basic rag and tube type has more appeal to me than the latest and greatest glass cockpit whiz bang. Yes, I'm old.


    Thanks for the responses.
     
  6. Witmo

    Witmo Pattern Altitude

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    Too bad you're not still in San Antonio. Here at Boerne Stage, there's several LSA' s on the line for rent and instruction. There's a Rans S-19, a Piper J-3 Cub, and a Pipistrel LSA airplane.
     
  7. Z06tink72

    Z06tink72 Pre-Flight

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    My z06 is faster than your C172
    I think sport pilot is worthless for a lot of folks because it takes them a lot longer than 20 hours to become comfortable. I solo'd around 10 and had 20.6 after my checkride so it worked out for me. Really comes down to plane availability and how fast you pick up the whole flyin' thing.
     
  8. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Final Approach

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    60 hours is not unreasonable for a private - think of that as a minimum for us geezers.

    Sport pilot will save you a few hours - but it's not going to be half of what it takes for a private. Just to pull numbers out of a warm dark place - 60 for a private vs. 50 for sport would seem to be closer to reality than 40 / 20.

    For me, and the kind of flying I do, the sport pilot rules are not a significant limitation. Your big issue will be - what are you going to fly in once you get your ticket? If there ain't no LSAs around to train in, there won't be one to rent either.
     
  9. exncsurfer

    exncsurfer Cleared for Takeoff

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    the artist formerly known as: jimbilly
    You can give flying a try up to the point of solo with no commitment to either a SPL or PPL. If you use a 152/172 that time can apply to either. To solo you'll need to decide, for PPL(for now) you'll need a medical(research this! don't submit and get a denial). If you still wanted to pursue the SPL at this point you'd have to find one to rent.

    So, it seems that your primary reason for LSA is cost of training, and then the restrictions of SPL fit with your mission anyway. You should think about how you will fly after you get it. If you can't rent an LSA to train in, what will you fly once you are certified? I am in the same boat as you as far as how much flying I expect to be able to budget post cert. There are a couple of ways to look at the training cost and tackle it. Most will recommend that you will spend less getting your cert if you fly more often and knock it out as quickly as possible. While this is true, I take the alternate view. If you look at the type of flying you want to do(itch scratching), it pretty much is training type flying. So, why separate cost to get the cert from post cert cost(in your mind). If you are renting and flying just to fly, the only difference is the added CFI cost. Now you don't want to be a permanent student, but you can look at training in the same budget bucket as 'flying'. I've been at it for about 2 years now, I have all my required hours except for check ride prep.

    I figure if I can't get proficient enough to pass a check ride by flying the frequency I expect to be able to fly afterwards, then I probably shouldn't be flying.

    If I had it to do over, I'd probably bunch 2 or 3 lessons a week for the first couple weeks to get the ball rolling, then settle in to a more affordable schedule. My primary budget constraint is time, but whether its time or money you have to have it.

    Just go take your first lesson already! Have fun.
     
  10. Glenn D

    Glenn D Pre-Flight

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    When I wanted to get back into flying, I was going the LSA direction as I was not sure I could get a medical... So I went out and started flying a Warrior just to get back into the air, then an LSA plane... CTSW, I really liked the Warrior, Did not like the CTSW as the controls were not harmonized.. but then found another one to rent that was much better... it woudl have been everything I wanted in flying, but my wife wanted 4 seats and faster.. So I found that I could get a medical, and we all know that happy wife, happy life, get a Cherokee 140 and all it well...

    There is a pilot here at work that is SPL, and flys a trike... it is great for him. he has tried an RV-12 and thinking maybe a fixed wing may be a lot better so who knows... go out and try different aircraft if you can.. SPL would be a great way to go if it meets your mission... and getting started in a 150 would be almost like an LSA... there should be some aircraft to go look at and ask for a ride in to see if you like it.... Ask around.
     
  11. Miss_Vivian

    Miss_Vivian Filing Flight Plan

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    One caveat about "the hours will count no matter if I pursue SP or PP" == if you have any intention at all of going for the private, make sure that your instructor is a full CFI, not a CFI-Sport. An instructor who holds a PP and is legal to fly that 150, 172, whatever, and who holds a CFI-Sport, can legally instruct you towards a sport pilot license up through solo in a non-LSA plane. But the hours of flight training taken with that instructor will not count toward the minimum you need for PP.
     
  12. Shepherd

    Shepherd Pattern Altitude

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    This is my recommendation.
    Find an LSA somewhere. Fly all your hours in the LSA.
    Fly all the PPL requirements, not the SPL requirements (long xc solo distance, night hours, etc, etc) You can use those for both your SPL and PPL and only fly them once.
    As soon as you can, take and pass the SPL oral and checkride. Get your "D", "C", "B" airspace sign-offs.
    You can now legally fly anywhere you want, with a passenger, while pursuing your PPL.
    Stay in the LSA until you are finished with your PPL. You can take your PPL checkride in the LSA.
    Then you can transition (cheaply) to any aircraft you want, and your crosswind skills will be better for having flown the lighter aircraft.
    It's a lot cheaper, and a lot more fun this way.
     
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