Your opinions on renewing my CPL/CFI after a LONG lapse?

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by Rooster T, Aug 21, 2018.

  1. Rooster T

    Rooster T Pre-Flight

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    I'm near-new to PoA but have been searching/reading here quite a bit and it feels like home already. :) I tried (really!) to make this shorter but ...

    I'm getting back into flying and hopefully instructing after a very long break. All my kit is well past stale-date -- CPL, instrument, CFI, AGI. Not to mention after getting all my tickets I barely used them before getting distracted by my non-aviation career and thus dropped the mic on flying for 20+ years.

    I did renew just my CPL 8 years ago but didn't fly after that. Call it a midlife crisis checkbox at 50.

    I've got my CPL renewal under way now and need only a couple more flights to finish. So now if I want to instruct, it seems maybe I should up my expired CFI to a CFII. Is this just like starting over for my CFI plus adding all the instrument knowledge/flight requirements? I've read a few times here that it's not as "involved" as the original CFI? That some elements of the test are not required for a renewal? I've read both PTS's and the CFII seems like half the CFI (73 pages vs 188), but the differences are still murky to me. The chart on p.20 of the CFII PTS is confusing. I remember my own CFI experience just enough to not want to repeat if necessary. Even our local DPE said "At least you won't have to ever do that again!". But perhaps since I didn't stay current, I may have to?

    Or are there any reasons to get my IFR renewed first, then do the CFII? I know getting back into both instrument flying and instruction may initially uncage my gyros.:confused: My priority is of course to be a fabulous instructor, but if one path is more financially or otherwise advantageous, it would be nice to know the pros and cons. My location has a limited availability of CFIs and aircraft, and so far scheduling has been a bit problematic. I know from experience that if my training drags it'll be frustrating and more expensive. Perhaps I should consider bucking up and going to a flight school for a couple weeks and knock it all out? The thought of dealing with a 141 and all the variables there doesn't exactly give me warm fuzzies.

    Any other ideas on my situation? BTW I'm flying with BasicMed for now since I understand I can instruct with it and don't plan to do charters, etc. for the foreseeable future.

    Thanks in advance. :D
     
  2. Ben Diss

    Ben Diss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I would definitely get an IPC before going heads-down for the CFII. A lot has changed so it'll be more than just chipping the rust off. No paper charts, no NDB, no reason to do a VOR approach as everything's (basically) a GPS approach. Learn how to work a Garmin 430/530 and 650/750. The 5 T's still apply and we still do holds, but it's much simpler with current avionics. Get an iPad Mini 4 and Foreflight and master it.

    Good luck!
     
  3. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    Two comments:

    1. I don't necessarily agree on his specifics (yes, you still need to understand VOR and they are not going to test you on your choice of an EFB, if you choose any of them), but I agree with @Ben Diss's overall comment that it will be essential to get you instrument skills back up to snuff and your instrument procedure knowledge updated. The CFII add-on is generally not as involved as an initial CFI rating. The assumption is you already know how to teach, but can you teach instruments? But, given your layoff, an Inspector or DPE might dig a little deeper.

    2. BasicMed. Yes, you can do everything as a CFI with BasicMed you can do with a Third Class, with one notable exception - you may not put a pilot under the hood unless you are the one acting as PIC. It's a weird anomaly introduced by the BasicMed legislation and carried over into the regs. Basically (pun intended), it comes down to the wording plaintiff the law. It says, " an individual may operate as pilot in command," and not (or example) "an individual may exercise any third class medical privilege..." The strange net effect is you may act as a safety pilot if you are PIC , but not if your aren't PIC.

    That's not an issue most of the time. But in can be. For example, much of the instruction I do is in aircraft owned by my clients. For various reasons - not meeting the open pilot warranty, lack of the level of familiarity I want with the aircraft, stuff like that - I want my client to be PIC. With BasicMed, I would be unable to give them hood time (although we can train in actual!)
     
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  4. brien23

    brien23 Cleared for Takeoff

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    Get out now, times have changed it's not the same as years ago and not as much fun.
     
  5. Kenny Phillips

    Kenny Phillips Pattern Altitude

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    I assume that you are joking. Right now instructors are in great demand, because pilots are in great demand, and they are leaving instructing! I'm even considering instructing when I retire (gotta have something to do!) With going rates around fifty bucks an hour, and someone else paying for the plane, it seems like a winner.
     
  6. Eric Gleason

    Eric Gleason Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I think Ben's advice to get current as an instrument pilot before starting the CFII course is a better bet. Enough has changed that there will be a bit of a learning curve. There are a handful of GPS approach types that you probably have never heard of, for example. I don't think it will add much time to the process, but it will make it easier to step up to the CFII.

    I also think going for the CFII is a great idea vs. going through the hoops of just reinstating your CFI.
     
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  7. Rooster T

    Rooster T Pre-Flight

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    Excellent insights everyone - thanks! I see now I really need to just focus on getting instrument current and do the IPC. That's enough to keep me busy for some time. In renewing my CPL the first time, the biggest change for me was airspace (it was changing in the early 90s right when I quit flying). But now of course the rise of GPS (RIP NDB) is a quantum change for me. Not to mention just getting comfortable again with basic IFR flight and the system today. Will have to spend a lot of hours with Foggles or in IMC before I can claim instructor proficiency.

    And thanks Mark for the BasicMed nuance. I'd read something about that somewhere but it wasn't clear, but is now. I'll probably just continue on my BasicMed until I'm much closer or into actual instruction. I know I can pass a II or III, but will need to get a couple of medical approvals first (e.g., had cataract surgery, so have to get an ophthalmologist sign an FAA 8500-7).

    And now I have an excuse to get an iPad Mini 4 :rolleyes:
     
  8. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Man, I had to do an NDB hold on my check ride.

    Once learned, the NDB was the easiest thing to work with in the air.
     
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  9. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    I have found very few people who thought an NDB approach using an off-airport NDB was easy.
     
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  10. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I have only done 3 NDB approaches in the lower 48 and all 3 had the NDB off the field. I have done several in Alaska and all those had the NDB either on the field or really close enough to not be considered an off field NDB. I have even filed and flown a few colored airways, all in Alaska.

    Maybe I was good at NDB approaches because I was so bad at holding a heading....:lol::lol::lol: (the RMI was very helpful)

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. Ben Diss

    Ben Diss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yea, me too but that was in 1993. They're officially off the IFR ACS now.
     
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  12. Ben Diss

    Ben Diss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Mark- You're right. I could have been more clear. While you'll rarely fly a VOR approach, you still have to know them and demonstrate them for a check ride. Question for you. Is it still necessary for an IPC?
     
  13. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Not that much has changed, it’s all the same just a few easier things added on, also you will be shooting a ILS for the precision approach.

    Per the NDB, I’ve shot them on checkrides but always monitoring the NDB but flying the GPS overlay.

    For the last evaluation like flight I had, it was non moving map, non GPS and a ton of NDBs.

    Also proper NDB flying teaches a good amount especially in the situational awareness and timing area.
     
  14. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Final Approach

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    I had them explained to me in the debrief on my CFII ride...they're easy now. :)
     
  15. Eric Gleason

    Eric Gleason Pre-takeoff checklist

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    FYI, the basic model ipads don't have internal GPS. The cellular enabled versions have do an internal GPS. That's the version I got, and just didn't activate it with a cell service. There are other options, too.

    Some other things you'll need to start getting up to speed on:

    -ADS-B: New transponders in the plane that broadcast position and can receive certain data from the ground, including other planes, weather data, and NEXRAD radar.
    -AHRS (Pronounced "EH-harz") Attitude Heading and Reference System. Solid state system that can send attitude & heading info to devices that can translate this into virtual insruments. Glass panel avionics have this as part of the installation suite. It's also included in a lot of in-panel ADS-B transponders, and can be displayed through your EFB software

    To get full use of your EFB software, you need a way to get ADS-B data, GPS position, and maybe AHRS data into it. A lot of planes have ADS-B transponders that will connect to your ipad via bluetooth and give you all that data. You can also get a portable device with these features. Pricey, but may be worth it to you.
     
  16. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    As a CFI you’re making money on your CFI not CPL, I was just going to CFI I’d stick with basic med


    You really don’t need any of that stuff, but it is nice.

    A iPad mini cellular with foreflight is more than enough.
     
  17. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    There's a requirement for nonprecision approach using two different types of navaids, one of which includes a procedure turn. But that can be done using LVAV GPS and a LOC.
     
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  18. SToL

    SToL Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Oh man... I forgot all about the NDB. The coolest thing about them was listening to AM radio on long cross countries. Man, now I"m kind of missing them.

    PJ
     
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  19. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    No one picked up on the fact that we don't renew certificates of the pilot nature?
     
  20. SToL

    SToL Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yeah I saw that, but was much more excited about the NDB/ADF comment. and technically, it's not a CPL either.

    PJ
     
  21. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    That's why I didn't use the term license in my post.

    I think I did two NDB approaches but I can't remember whether they were on field or off field.