Things I’ve learned as a captain after a month

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by jordane93, Apr 28, 2018.

  1. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Some FOs like to make my job as difficult as possible
    Most FOs are amazing and set up everything for me
    I have one pace and it’s slow
    I really get peeved when FOs start checklists without me calling for it, especially when they miss a critical item on the before takeoff checklist. Read and VERIFY!
    Keep a little power in when taxiing to the gate single engine and just ride the brakes. I got caught with idle thrust and not a lot of momentum and basically came to a complete stop a few feet before I was supposed to. Which then required me to add a massive amount of thrust to get the plane rolling again.
    Taxi slowly, especially when the gate is right at the turn off otherwise you’ll taxi right past it. Ask me how I know;)
    I actually enjoy the responsibility and being able to set the pace and tone
    Looking forward to many more months as a captain. This really is the best job!
    And the pay isn’t too bad.
     
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  2. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Ghesh one month on online and beetchin' already. :nonod: :rofl:
     
  3. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Final Approach

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    I took a BUFF to Canada in 2010 as a barely pinned on O-3 and this one canuck kept asking me for the "Colonel" in charge. I kept trying to explain though everybody in the crew outranked me, I was in fact the boss of this joint. He was beyond confused lol. Fortunately I didn't have to go Somali pirate on him :rofl:
    [​IMG]

    My pre-sortie briefing usually consisted of some variation of "don't let me catch you sleeping when I wake up..." :sleep::yikes::biggrin:
     
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  4. ARFlyer

    ARFlyer En-Route

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    @jordane93 Do y'all pop the reversers while taxiing to not use the brakes?

    Don't get to comfortable with FOs. I've seen some that will make you wonder how they made it through training alive.

    I always tried to be quiet and wait for the CAs commands on the first few legs to feel them out. Once I feel them out I'll start doing some items on my own if they're cool with it. Some are and some aren't. Doesn't bother me either way.
     
  5. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    So far it hasn’t come down to that! It’s really interesting flying with former military or prior airline guys. They have so much more experience than me but I’m still in command. It’s kind of a weird deal for me. My general philosophy has been to let the FO decide a lot of the stuff when it’s their leg. Single engine taxi, when to start the second engine, do we need continuous ignition for the takeoff, when to sit the FAs down, etc. The way I see it is they passed training so they must have some sort of idea of what’s going on. I definitely still watch and monitor them though.
     
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  6. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    We are only supposed to use reverse thrust while taxiing if we are going to go in a ditch, slide on some ice, or anything else that would damage the plane. They would rather us use the brakes, slow down to a normal taxi speed, let the speed build up again then repeat.
     
  7. Let'sgoflying!

    Let'sgoflying! Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Probably you get leadership training but I have to tell you about one friend of mine, retired 2 years ago as a captain of an A320, I think it was.
    He flew with us in our smaller planes so I got to know him.
    He was a class act that everyone looked up to.

    He had a great way to develop a friendly rapport with staff/crew, in which everyone knew he was in charge - but he was also open to all ideas and any help offered. You could relax with him, but you knew if the s-hit hit the fan, you were also very comfortable that he would truly lead. He would gently but firmly direct, and he would support everyone in their roles to work as a team to get the job done. I am sure he never berated anyone or criticized anyone behind their back, he would never say anything to degrade morale.

    I wish I could let you know exactly what he did to accomplish this, but it was what he said plus his body language.
    I think I learned from him you have to be very careful about what you say, and how you put those words, and more - you have to learn a delivery. One that is direct, but in no way threatening, and makes people want to join his team, help the group reach the goal.
     
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  8. ARFlyer

    ARFlyer En-Route

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    They tell us to pop them and use them to help with the braking. So most guys taxi with them open at idle. I flew with an ex CRJ test pilot that said it was the most stupidest thing he's ever heard a company tell pilots to do. He said it cokes the engine in no time flat.
     
  9. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    Wait a sec @jordane93 aren’t you supposed to be practicing your arguing on air like these guys? ;)

    (I love ATCMemes. Hahaha.)

     
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  10. LoneAspen

    LoneAspen Line Up and Wait

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    "Check for stuck mic" - is that the polite way for them to say STFU?
     
  11. noobJohn

    noobJohn Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yes.
     
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  12. CC268

    CC268 Final Approach

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    I promise to do better next time
     
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  13. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Yea I guess my company’s logic is thrust reversers cost a lot more than brakes so they’d rather us use brakes.
     
  14. ARFlyer

    ARFlyer En-Route

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    It's even more then that. It's bad for the engines. The actual CRJ PRM says not taxi with the thrust reversers open. A CA explained it saying it has to do with coking or something along those lines. However, I'm not an engineer so that is a @Ted DuPuis question.
     
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  15. Shepherd

    Shepherd En-Route

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    "Command" is a weird position, and it can be worse than being in a mine field.
    I started my Air Force days as enlisted. Sixteen months later I got a battlefield commission. Three months later I was an F-4 jockey.
    OCS guys didn't like me much, Academy guys hated my guts.
    When I got bumped to flight leader status over guys with years more experience than me, things really got tense. Things really got nuts when the squadron commander "quit" his pilot to be my GIB.
    So I never gave orders.
    I'd walk in and announce "I'm going out to blow s-it up, anyone coming?"
    After a few missions guys realized I was doing everything I could to get them out and back again as unharmed as humanly possible, so (most) trusted me, and let me do my job, and they did theirs.
    One group really clicked and we flew almost all our missions together. We became "The Merry Band of Mischievous Monkeys". (That's a 58th TFS inside joke.)
    Some never came around, and honestly I doubted their ability to do anything. I made sure they never flew with us.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2018
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  16. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Yea it is kind of weird. I’m naturally a quiet person and pretty laid back so I kind of have to force myself to change how I act in the cockpit.
     
  17. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I had a ground instructor that flew airlines from the late 50s to the late 80s. At one time he was a FO in a Constellation. He would tell us stories about one particular captain that was old school. The captain was also a disbarred lawyer. You better be in the cockpit when he arrived. When he arrived, he would enter the plane, make no acknowledgment to the stewardesses, enter the cockpit, then close and lock the door. If you were not in the cockpit then you were now a passenger. Not for one leg, but for the entire trip.

    This captain apparently thought the only reason a FO is in the cockpit is for gear up, flaps up, gear down, flaps down. My ground instructor said he used FOs to get coffee and serve the meals to the captain, navigator and flight engineer. He said he never got any flight time with that captain.

    Another thing this one captain used to do is argue with ATC. Vectored approaches were a new thing, and this captain was not going to do a vectored approach. All approaches with him were full approaches. And so that is what he did....
     
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  18. unsafervguy

    unsafervguy Pattern Altitude

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    Be very careful with some of that. Yes you are training future captains, but YOU are always in charge. Single engine taxi is always your call, you are steering. Personally I would only do single engine taxi when long delays are an issue. Sometimes they may not even consider something like your number 10 and only 200lbs above min to fuel. Give them some room, but be ready to explain in a teaching way why you may override there decision. Sometime I would have to tell a fo, there's not really a reason except that's the way I want it done in my cockpit.

    Enjoy the new seat

    Bob
     
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  19. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Had a few favorites pilots/SOFs from the 58th TFS when I was at Eglin and they were flying Eagles.
     
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  20. KSCessnaDriver

    KSCessnaDriver Pattern Altitude

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    Sure, but when company SOP is single engine taxi, you better have at least a decent reason not to do it... I've never left the gate at this airline where I had 200 pounds between ramp and min fuel
     
  21. Shepherd

    Shepherd En-Route

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    Missed the F-15s by a year..
     
  22. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I try to single engine most of the time because that’s our SOP. If they’re plan doesn’t really align with what I like I’ll just tell them what I’d like them to do.
     
  23. TCABM

    TCABM Pattern Altitude

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    I was lucky enough to see the last year of the 4-sq 33d OG. It was a sad day to see the 59th colors furled. And a good day a few years later when they came back as a TES.

    Love the Eagle; 101-0.
     
  24. FlyingElvii

    FlyingElvii Line Up and Wait

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    Brake pads are cheaper than engine teardowns for FOD.
     
  25. Slipkid65

    Slipkid65 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Congrats on the upgrade Jordan! Now you always get to fly with your favorite A**hole Capt!

    You'll find your "style" after a bit.
     
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  26. Greg Bockelman

    Greg Bockelman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Reminds me of an old saw I once heard. Slightly paraphrased, maybe.

    When a First Officer looks to his left, he sees the a-hole in the left seat. When a Captain looks to the left, he sees the reflection of the a-hole in the left seat.

    Present company excluded, of coarse. LOL
     
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  27. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    The first time I heard this joke was in training as a flight engineer. We had one more ahole in front of us.
     
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  28. Paulie

    Paulie Line Up and Wait

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    Now that you're a captain you can lose the condoms, your personality will be a more effective birth control method.
     
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  29. jspilot

    jspilot Cleared for Takeoff

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    Glad to see things are settling in. Jerry Seinfeld has a funny line about being in charge. It goes "I don't want to be in charge. In fact I don't want to be in charge of anything. The first time something goes wrong the first thing someone says is "Who's in charge here?" I don't want to be that guy in charge!""

    It's a humorous look at being in charge but he is certainly on to something!
     
  30. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    ????
     
  31. Anymouse

    Anymouse En-Route

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    Personally, I prefer my FOs to be proactive on the checklists. It lets me know that their head is in the game. If they start a tad early, I'll politely ask that they hold up for a bit.

    Of course, when I'm right seat, I always like to start the shutdown checklist a bit early. I'll typically call for the parking brake to be set while we're still taxiing in. Fortunately, most (MOST!!) of the people I fly with see the humor in it and don't actually set the parking brake just yet.
     
  32. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I have a specific reason why I don’t want a checklist at that specific point in time. If they start the checklist, they throw me off my rhythm. While I like them to be proactive, they sometimes jump to step 4 while I’m still on step 2.
     
  33. JC150

    JC150 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    When I was an FO, i had a captain tell me to look at the right wingtip. Then he said "everything left of that is mine". Then I had captains that told me to shut up and wait to be told what to do. That kind of waiting to be told what to do (like wait to be told to do a checklist) didn't make me feel like I had any play in the game but I was just there to pull the flaps and gear.

    As a captain, I let my FO's do as little or as much as they want. When we're single engine taxiing, whether we're 50 something or number 1 for takeoff, I tell them they can start the second engine and run all the checklists whenever they feel they would if they were the captain. I encourage them to do the welcome aboard PA (if they want to), and heck i'll even take the walk arounds if they want to practice the captain flows. They're just as qualified and had to take the same ATP checkride as I did, I just happen to have a little more seniority. Heck I'll even let them taxi from the right seat (granted i'll help with the tiller on sharper turns) but the throttle is theirs if they want it. And i'll even let them practice parking/stopping the plane at the gate.

    I had captains that let me do the same when I was an FO and those were the trips I remembered and enjoyed the most. Kept my head in the game like you said.

    It's fun being a captain, congrats on the upgrade and enjoy!
     
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  34. MD11Pilot

    MD11Pilot Line Up and Wait

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    Many many many years ago, as a brand new MD-80 Captain and my F/O was a former Texas International/Continental Airlines Captain with 19 years in the DC-9, I would just tell him to not let me screw up and to advise me what to do. He said "your the Captain" and he treated me as such. On occasion he would politely say "your doing great but you might try it this way" and I would say "Yes Sir" and do it. He taught me a lot about being a Captain. I was very fortunate to fly with many guys like that. I am very calm and even tempered in the cockpit and NEVER tried to lord over someone by being the Captain, except for a very few people who were arrogant stupid jerks and needed to be brought down a few notches. My usual briefing was "we will operate by the book and if I am not its because I don't remember it or never read it and so just remind me...also don't kill me, get me violated or let me do the same to you and now lets go have fun".

    KNOW your airplane better than you F/O (very hard to do when you fly with guys like I flew with...Blue Angels, Thunderbirds, AF 1, Test Pilots etc. don't be intimidated and don't be intimidating...you're a crew. Flow is necessary and take command of it. Set the tone so they feel comfortable saying something. The really good ones know their better than you but don't have to prove it by being jerks. Case in point...upon my seconding meeting with a very nice guy, I said "your Scott Anderson" and he said "Yea?" and I said "your a Blue Angel!" and he said "It was no big deal" and I said, 'YES IT IS"...one of the most humble guys around and I always said...Scott, if we get in an unusual attitude...You got it.
     
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  35. Anymouse

    Anymouse En-Route

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    I've had a few like that myself. In fact, one of them I blame on a crash that killed 6 people. The FO on that flight had flown exclusively with this jackhat for three years. Said jackhat had trained him pretty well to not give any input unless asked. That FO sat and watched quietly as his captain ran a plane into the side of a mountain in VFR weather.

    IMNSHO, one of the unwritten duties/responsibilities of being a captain is to develop FOs into captains. Having them turn out as a captain they themselves would like to fly with is an ultimate achievement. I'm proud to say that there's a few folks that have been my FOs in the past that I've done switch ***** for with pleasure.
     
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  36. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    When I flew as a relatively new FO with this Capt and starting running checklists, he said just do the checklist I don't wanna hear it ( he was supposed to respond). OK. So a few months later flew with him again. Running the checklist silently as that's what he said last time. Then he asks, hey, ya gonna run the checklist? By now I knew him better,so I said, you *******, last time I flew with you you told me to just do the checklist. Surprised, he says, I did? Fun times.
     
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  37. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Lately I’ve added to my briefs to wait until I call for a checklist to run it. I know some captains don’t care but like I said in my other post, if they start running a checklist without me calling for it, it throws me off my tempo. I understand why some of them run the checklist on their own though.
     
  38. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Coking occurs when the oil gets too hot. Coke can then migrate through the oil system and cause a number of issues. If you shut down the engine without giving it sufficient cool-down time then the oil on the hotter surfaces will coke up and then that coke will eventually break off and migrate through the system. I'm not sure if the CF34s are necessarily more prone to this than other engines, but they certainly do coke up quite a bit under certain conditions. If you use thrust reversers, then you're applying high power (read: lots of heat) shortly before shutdown, which probably doesn't get cooled off. If you shut down one engine shortly after landing and then do a single engine taxi in, you're also more likely to get coking on your engines because that engine gets a reduced cooldown time. We did find a correlation on that with operators that always shut down the [whichever] side engine, so there's something to that. Most often the coking would result in high oil consumption, although it can be possible for the coking to get in a place where it clogs up the oil filter or something like that.

    Because you're going to high power again using T/Rs, that does put extra wear on the hot section components. On the CF34, what we in GA know as hot section inspections are done when a certain performance degradation is observed on the engine, and it's called a "performance restoration" because of it. So if you're nicer to your hot section components (reduced power takeoffs, lower power used in the climb and in cruise, don't use T/Rs) then your hot section will last longer. I don't think that the requirements on life limited parts are given any relief if you don't use the T/Rs, pretty sure that the use of T/Rs was assumed in the LLP calculations and those are inflexible Chapter 5 limits, but it's been a few years since I had to deal with those.

    Some of what I observed from my time working CF34 impacts how I operate the MU-2. I do try to be conservative on my temps (that also helps my fuel economy), and when landing I generally will hit beta rather than full reverse. That's easier on the engines and the props - essentially just flattens out the props rather than putting them in reverse pitch. The manual says something like 3 minute cool-down before shutdown, which I observe. Put the engines back down to 65% RPM (which is ground idle), taxi where I'm going, take my time getting everything sorted before I shut down and put the props on the locks. @Anymouse I'm sure can tell me how to do it better since he's got a few thousand hours more TPE-331 time than I do.
     
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  39. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    When I flew CRJs we had a two minute cool down.
     
  40. JC150

    JC150 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    We also have a 2 minute cool down. I see people using idle reverse all the time, never heard of it being an issue until now. I will say one time, a CRJ-200 in the block was trying to get around an B737-800 which was also in the block. They went into reverse and powered back to get around it... Now I can see multiple issues there