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  #1  
Old 09-18-2011, 02:36 PM
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Want to get a pilot's license...

Hey guys,

I was thinking of a way to get a new hobby/skill, and albeit not cheap, I thought that getting my pilot's license would be kind of cool. When I was younger I wanted to fly helicopters for the military, but I see that's a different license than for planes... Anyone have any experience or pointers to someone wanting to get a flying license for either medium?


Thanks,

Carlen

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  #2  
Old 09-18-2011, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Solid Snake View Post
Hey guys,

I was thinking of a way to get a new hobby/skill, and albeit not cheap, I thought that getting my pilot's license would be kind of cool. When I was younger I wanted to fly helicopters for the military, but I see that's a different license than for planes... Anyone have any experience or pointers to someone wanting to get a flying license for either medium?


Thanks,

Carlen
I think that the requirement will to build a plane out of LegosŪ first.
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Old 09-18-2011, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by The Clk Man View Post
I think that the requirement will to build a plane out of LegosŪ first.
Challenge accepted I figure I'll learn to fly in an F-22 Raptor, so I guess thats what I have to build, right?
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Old 09-18-2011, 04:14 PM
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Challenge accepted I figure I'll learn to fly in an F-22 Raptor, so I guess that's what I have to build, right?
Yep, we all look forward to seeing your Lego creation.
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  #5  
Old 09-18-2011, 05:09 PM
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I'm about 14 hours into both fixed and rotary wing. (14 each) It's much cheaper to get your fixed wing rating then get a helicopter add-on.

I would find a small airport with UNICOM to get started so you're not having to negotiate traffic and ATC right off the bat. Sign up for the ground school first and learn the basics. I went to ground school for years (completed it then went back for refreshers) and then started teaching part of the navigation section.

Believe it or not, the flying part gets kind of boring so you can kind of geek out on the nav part of it. As a bonus, you get lost less!
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Old 09-18-2011, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by KarTek View Post
I'm about 14 hours into both fixed and rotary wing. (14 each) It's much cheaper to get your fixed wing rating then get a helicopter add-on.

I would find a small airport with UNICOM to get started so you're not having to negotiate traffic and ATC right off the bat. Sign up for the ground school first and learn the basics. I went to ground school for years (completed it then went back for refreshers) and then started teaching part of the navigation section.

Believe it or not, the flying part gets kind of boring so you can kind of geek out on the nav part of it. As a bonus, you get lost less!
Hey KarTek, can you fly over to the house and take the wife and I to the grocery store?
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Old 09-18-2011, 09:37 PM
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I wish I could... At gatherings, we have been known to land in the parking lot of Bob Evans for breakfast or the field behind the Dairy Queen...
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  #8  
Old 09-19-2011, 01:18 AM
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My son got his commercial and instrument helicopter license over a couple of years in Orlando. It cost him about $75k. He works as an theatrical and industrial rigger and has decided to keep his daily job and be a flight instructor on the weekend. I doubt that he will ever make a living as a copter pilot.

Get ready to shell out some cash and start off at very low pay. If you are under 26 years old you can enlist in the Army an become a pilot. You will get a lot of flight including 'heavy' time which is almost impossible to pay for as a civilian. You can't get better training anywhere.
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  #9  
Old 09-19-2011, 03:46 AM
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First: Try flying the world's smallest helicopter

A fun way to test your aptitude for the skills necessary to fly a helicopter (and it isn't easy, there are many that must be used simultaneously) is to try flying the model helicopter inside the glass box where you stand outside the box with the controls and try to fly it without crashing it.

I admit it, I crashed.


Over and over.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QVUWz7S_bhc


It's in the Science Museum in London England.

You should go there, you would really love it. Takes a long time to see everything though.
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Last edited by Jim B.; 09-19-2011 at 10:10 AM.
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  #10  
Old 09-19-2011, 09:28 AM
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You don't need a license to fly. Get signed off to solo and buy a cheap plane. Fly the hell out of it and sell it before it eats you alive.
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  #11  
Old 09-19-2011, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarTek View Post
I'm about 14 hours into both fixed and rotary wing. (14 each) It's much cheaper to get your fixed wing rating then get a helicopter add-on.

I would find a small airport with UNICOM to get started so you're not having to negotiate traffic and ATC right off the bat. Sign up for the ground school first and learn the basics. I went to ground school for years (completed it then went back for refreshers) and then started teaching part of the navigation section.

Believe it or not, the flying part gets kind of boring so you can kind of geek out on the nav part of it. As a bonus, you get lost less!

Good advice. I learned to fly at a small town airport. It was an old bomber base with three LONG, WIDE runways and plenty of open fields around it in case of the need for an emergency landing. The plane I learned in, didn't even have a radio.

Where I MIGHT differ is that you can easily do the ground training in tandem with the actually flying portion of the training.

Try to find a gazillion hour flight instructor. He will probably be old and grizzled and maybe even a cantankerous old fart, but this is the guy that can make a good and safe pilot out of you.

If you can, learn in a taildragger like an Aeronca Champ or some such. That's kind of like learning to drive a stick shift car. You can then shift to a nosewheel plane with no trouble.

With today's aircraft rental and instruction rates you can count on about $7K to $10K to get your private license. It will depend on how you take to it, the instructor and how often you fly. Three hours per week is ideal.

Start calling around airports near you and find someone that will give you an intro flight, sometimes called a discovery flight. It will be at a discount price and when you get back on the ground, you will know for sure whether or not you want to be a pilot.

Some people are just born with the need to fly. If you're one of them it will be an experience and an endeavor like no other in your life.
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Old 09-19-2011, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryBible View Post

Some people are just born with the need to fly.
And others, like Mohammed Atta, and his ilk, only want to learn how to take off.
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Old 09-19-2011, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by TwitchKitty View Post
You don't need a license to fly. Get signed off to solo and buy a cheap plane. Fly the hell out of it and sell it before it eats you alive.
But with 20 hrs required for light sport and 40+ (usually ~50) required for a PPL, why wouldn't you earn the ticket?

If you're buying the plane, I'd find it hard to believe that you'd put less than 50 hours on it before you sell it. (That's the same amount of hours as driving a car 3000 miles).

If you don't want to have a license and want to fly, buy an ultralight.
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  #14  
Old 09-19-2011, 11:25 AM
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In order to be a safe pilot, do it right and get your private license. If you decide to shortcut a little bit, you can get a Light Sport license with restrictions, but if you do, make sure you have a regular instructor. If you get a Light Sport license with a Light Sport pilot, some of those hours won't count toward your private if you ever decide to move toward heavier aircraft.
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  #15  
Old 09-19-2011, 12:47 PM
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Real good advice from you guys, as always!

I called up Robinson Aviation (reportedly the best flight school in my area, based at Tweed airport), and for supplies and lessons, it'll be 6-9 Gs. Thats essentially what I expected to pay, so I'm happy. it only doesn't include plane fees, which are on an individual use basis.

http://www.robinsonaviation.com/flight_faq.htm

Kartek,

I will definitely go the fixed to rotor route; gives the added benefit of being able to fly whichever suits my fancy too.

Jim,

I had a toy similar to that 10 years ago. I lived next to a forest, and would chase squirrels alllll day long with it. Needless to say, I broke it doing just that one day and hadn't bought a new one with changing hobbies... Maybe I should pick up a new one.

I've never been to Yurop, but hope to one day.

Kip,

That's a litttttle out of my price range just now... If I do decide to get a commercial license, I would definitely go the military route.

Larry,

According to this school, they train in Piper Warriors, which doesn't look like a tail dragger... Maybe they have different styles available on a need basis. The thing I did like is they keep you with the same flight instructor, so they can track your progress accurately and prevent confusion from learning different techniques. I'll look for the oldest codger there.

Also, for future reference, how the heck do I multi quote?

Thanks,

Carlen

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