Neil H, April 24th, 2012
Simple answer, no. Flight training is a powerful experience that age cannot intercept. The only setback is the FAA, the DMV of the sky, who sets regulations in place to protect pilots and passengers alike. But there is always a way to get in the front seat and go follow ones dream of learning to fly.
I’ll start by addressing the younger crowd. Get this, to begin flight training, there is no minimum age! To solo a single engine aircraft requires one to be 16 years old minimum.Then, at 17, one becomes an adult in the FAA’s eyes and is able to take a checkride and receive a pilot license. When we think of the younger generation, we tend to generalize this group to be fit and healthy. If this holds true, it will be no problem getting a third class medical certificate from an FAA registered doctor. It’s even said that those who are young learn faster and gain fluent muscle memory with a shorter amount of practice. If you can’t wait until you’re 16 to mark your first pilot in command solo flight, you can solo a glider at just 14! Doing anything alone at these young ages is a feat that deserves recognition, especially something many are so passionate about like flying an aircraft. If you’re old enough to comprehend this, you’re ready to learn how to land a plane. But, if one or ones parents disagree, home flight simulation on a computer is a lot of fun and believe it or not, it aids in learning the physics of flight. Read More >>
Evan Krueger, December 13th, 2011
My GPS track from Carbondale to Dyersburg
For my first night cross-country of this semester, my instructor and I flew to Dyersburg airport in Dyersburg, Tennessee. I spent the hour before the flight preparing for my first night flight in over a year. I made sure that I had my flashlight and an extra set of batteries. I also was reading up on the newer 2003 Cessna 172R. This would be the first time I would fly the newer 172 and although they aren't incredibly different, it’s important to know about the differences. The biggest difference between the new and old models is that the newer R models are fuel injected instead of carbureted. While this means that carburetor ice is now impossible, the downside is that the aircraft are a bit more complicated to start. Little changes included inertia real seat belts and strobe lights. Overall, the R models are nicer. Read More >>
Jason Schappert, November 1st, 2010
When you want to learn to fly, one of the options that you can look at is to join a flying club. Most aviators get a good headstart when they decide to join a flying club.
Now, what is a flying club? It is an organization that is dedicated to bringing aviation home to those that would might want to learn to fly or rent an aircraft but the cost of doing such are a bit out of reach. Specifically, it provides a source of aircraft ownership. It helps ease your concerns by simply providing a pool of aircraft that can be readily rented out and thus eliminating the need for you to search for aircraft that you could rent for your flying lessons. Some flying clubs can also be specialized and cater to aviators that are interested in restored or vintage aircraft. Read More >>
Arty Trost, September 20th, 2010
With great regret, I’ve decided to sell my Maxair Drifter and get another LSA. Fellow pilots have been urging me to “upgrade” for years. Many of them are frankly astonished that I’ve continued to fly my venerable Drifter, especially on such long distance flights. (Since 2000, I’ve made a long-distance flight each year; the shortest was two weeks and 2800 miles; the longest was seven weeks and 7500 miles.)
My Drifter was built in 1984 and I’m the third owner. It’s completely open and has been described as a molded plastic seat mounted on an irrigation pipe with a lawnmower engine and wings. However others may disdain it, it’s served me well in the 18 years I’ve been flying it. But its cruise speed is 55-65 mph, although I can push it to 70 mph if I absolutely need to. The pilots I’ve been flying with are all flying slightly faster E-LSAs, and are getting tired of waiting for me on our long distance flights. Another 10 mph will make a big difference in keeping up. Read More >>
Chris Findley, CFI, August 4th, 2010
by Chris Findley, CFI
“What is the weather predicted to do while we are flying? And will the changes that occur be beyond your capabilities?”
My student arrived on time and, after exchanging pleasantries, I asked him about the weather. It was a local flight, but I had been on my student to begin sharing in the decision-making process. I had begun to sense that he simply relied on my level of comfort and advice to make the decision to fly or not.
“AWOS says the ceiling is 3000 feet, with the wind 260 at 6.” he said, already heading for the flightline.
“Whoa…hang on.” I said. “You have to understand that weather is dynamic, not static. It’s always changing. What is the weather predicted to do while we are flying? And will the changes that occur be beyond your capabilities?”
He looked at my blankly for a minute. I explained, “Say we take off and 2 things happen: 1.) The ceiling begins to drop as a warm front begins to pass, from 3000 to 1600 feet and 2.) As it does that little westward wind becomes 12 gusting to 18. Would you, particularly where you are in your training, want to take off solo in those conditions?” Read More >>
Chris Findley, CFI, June 11th, 2010
By Chris Findley
There’s a certain thrill most pilots feel when they taxi onto the runway and line up on the centerline for takeoff. It’s the beginning of a great transition—from a ground-based reality to an air-based reality. It’s the gateway to flight and one of the first maneuvers a new pilot learns.
However, in many ways, it is often neglected as a maneuver. It is often treated as simply a mechanical action and, other than dealing with a crosswind, not much thought is put into the takeoff. Many pilots simply, line up, go to full power, reach takeoff speed, and haul back on the yoke. For some reason takeoffs become can very Cro-Magnon, “Come plane. Now we fly, ugh ugh.”
We are pleased with ourselves when we make a nice landing with gentle finesse. We should aim to have a similar finesse with our takeoffs. Hint: If you rotate (begin your climb) with such force your passengers grunt, you may want to make some adjustments to your technique.
There is as much technique in a good takeoff as there is in any maneuver. Here are a few keys to better takeoffs:. Read More >>
Steve Tupper, January 7th, 2010
This is to tell the man in the red plane that he has a fan.
I've been watching you from the ground. Well, from my farm pastures and yard actually. More often than you know. I am in awe of your skill and the performance you give is wonderful and joyous.
Who are you? Are you a man or a woman? A professional stunt pilot or a pleasure flyer of that pretty red plane? Do you perform for others besides me, or is what I'm seeing just an expression of your own preferences? Read More >>
Evan Krueger, January 5th, 2010
Hello everyone. Remember me? It's been a while since I've posted, but there's a semi-good reason behind it. Since my last post in August, I've earned my Private Pilot's License! The experience was tense yet exciting. After getting my license, I took some time off of flying to focus on school and to pay off the rest of my training. Although it was hard to sustain life without aviation for a few months, I made it through. Before I explain how the big day went, I'll explain the month or so leading up to it.
I spent almost all of August preparing for my checkride. Read More >>
BrentR, October 15th, 2009
I DID IT!
It has been a while since I last blogged my progress with my flight training. I did a lot of training in the month of July including simulated instrument training and finishing up my cross country flight requirements. Also, my CFI and I did PTS prep for about three hours.
The checkride was set for July 29, 2009. I felt very ready for it. However, I will say that I was nervous about the oral portion. As a result, the oral portion of the PTS was the most difficult part, but I managed to prove my knowledge of the flight rules according to the FAR. The in-flight portion of my checkride was easy because I knew my skill level was higher than average for a student pilot. As soon as the examiner and I landed for completion of the checkride, the examiner immediately wrote a note as I parked the airplane in big letters, “YOU PASSED!” Read More >>
Evan Krueger, August 11th, 2009
One of the last requirements that I needed to complete for my Private Pilot's License was a cross country trip after hours. I needed to go 50 miles away, and the trip had to last a total of two hours. Dana and I met on Wednesday at 21:00 to depart Westosha to Madison, Wisconsin. We couldn't have asked for a better night. The sky was both clear and smooth with an almost full moon lighting up the darkness. The trip was one of the best trips I've taken in a long time. Read More >>