Experience based A&P preparation

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
I just had contact with an IA I used to work under and he is writing me a notarized letter certifying my work experience which should cover about 3/4 of the experience time required for me to sit for my A&P. I've also got some experience with a home-built experimental and some substantial supervised maintenance I've done that may help increase my qualifying experience times... long story short, it's suddenly become very possible that I could qualify for my A&P exam with a few months preparation.

I'm curious if anybody on here has done an experienced-based A&P certification and how the process went for you?

Also, can anybody explain how the oral/practical exams go for this? I've taken many practicals as a pilot, just curious how a typical A&P exam goes?

I'm not going to actively pursue this immediately but it's definitely something I'm going to consider here in the next year or two.
 

MercFE

Well-Known Member
Had a coworker recently complete his A&P base off his Flight Engineer experience. Actually went a lot easier than I ever thought it would. Quick 8710 at the FSDO and off to a testing center.

Went so well that I plan on completing mine in the next couple months.
 

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
Had a coworker recently complete his A&P base off his Flight Engineer experience. Actually went a lot easier than I ever thought it would. Quick 8710 at the FSDO and off to a testing center.

Went so well that I plan on completing mine in the next couple months.
Flight Engineer as in the third seat/second officer in a large aircraft? Or is there some other FE role I'm not familiar with? I'm surprised that would be qualifying work experience, or you'd think any pilot could claim their flight experience too?
 

Fencer

Experimentalist
I was talking to a FSDO guy how to credit my experimental build experience toward A&P he said no way :(
 

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
I was talking to a FSDO guy how to credit my experimental build experience toward A&P he said no way :(
Probably an ignorant inspector...

5-1135 EXPERIENCE REQUIREMENTS. Section 65.77 requires the applicant to have documented practical experience in maintaining airframes and/or powerplants. At least 18 months of practical experience is required for the appropriate rating requested. For a certificate with both ratings, the requirement is for at least 30 months experience concurrently performing the duties appropriate to both ratings. If the 30 months concurrently performing the duties appropriate to both ratings has not been met, then calculate each rating separately using the 18-month requirement for each.
A. The practical experience must provide the applicant with basic knowledge of and skills with the procedures, practices, materials, tools, machine tools, and equipment used in aircraft construction, alteration, maintenance, and inspection.
B. With exception to the JSAMTCC A&P certification program experience gained from the military, work as an airframe or powerplant mechanic or work on an experimental amateur-built aircraft will be evaluated on its own merits to determine whether it fulfills the experience requirements.

Sure doesn't sound like a "no way" to me and I've heard of other people have it apply. I'd try again Fencer, like most things it's probably all about who you talk to.

http://members.eaa.org/home/homebuilders/faq/3A & P License and Amateur-Built Experience.html
 

MercFE

Well-Known Member
Flight Engineer as in the third seat/second officer in a large aircraft? Or is there some other FE role I'm not familiar with? I'm surprised that would be qualifying work experience, or you'd think any pilot could claim their flight experience too?
Yeah, third pilot type stuff... However, Flight Engineer in my community is responsible for all the A&P work on the aircraft when we're deployed. So, we attend a 8 month school on troubleshooting and repair, then do a 18 month syllabus on become self sufficient on the road.

Just having the schooling and being awarded the military credit falls under the FAR requirements for experience though.
 

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
Yeah, third pilot type stuff... However, Flight Engineer in my community is responsible for all the A&P work on the aircraft when we're deployed. So, we attend a 8 month school on troubleshooting and repair, then do a 18 month syllabus on become self sufficient on the road.

Just having the schooling and being awarded the military credit falls under the FAR requirements for experience though.
Ah very cool, sounds like a great job... diversity of responsibilities.
 

esa17

Well-Known Member
Roger is correct, I did the whole A&P by experience route.

I took two IA signed letters to the DFW FSDO with a detailed listing of my experiences and met with a maintenance inspector. I studied the FARs and 43-13 for days prior to the meeting and he didn't ask me a single question. He just looked at my letters, copied them and then signed my 8610. The only caveat was that he only signed me off for my airframe. His instructions were to get three more months of "engine" experience and then come back to see him. Once I had that experience behind me I went back and he signed off my 8610 for the power plant.

When it came to the exams the writtens were a bit of a bear but the oral and practical were a breeze. Seriously, they were the easiest "checkrides" I've ever taken.

If you're considering going the Pilot/A&P route I would suggest documenting every time you wipe oil of a cowl and get your supervisory A&Ps to sign your documents regularly. When I was four years into mine the man who taught me to wrench (and fly) was killed in a plane crash and I almost lost all that experience. Luckily I had him sign the letter a few days before he passed.
 

CFI A&P

Exploring the world one toilet at a time.
Did the practical experience route also. Had paperwork documenting my months of experience then went to the FSDO and had the 8610 signed. Went to a week long prep course and took the three written exams. Then had a two day oral and practical. Each task wasn't overly difficult, but wasn't a walk in the park either.

If you can document any supervision by an A&P while doing the experimental, that should be credited.

Good luck.
 

Aggiepilot

Well-Known Member
Along this line I have a question. I have been maintaining club aircraft (5 Cessnas [3 152, 2 172]) for 4 years along with working with the A&P on stuff that I couldn't do legally. Now I am working full time in the shop as well as flying for the company. I have a good grasp on almost all the airframe...Dont ask me a question about fabric cause never had any experience on that. When you said he wanted you to get more powerplant time, what did you have and what did he want? I've done a 2 12Yr Inspections on Lear 31As (gutted the plane, pulled all the avionics, pulled engines and changed the bolts, done a little NDT, so on so on) along with the A, B, and C inspections. Also have changed a ton of cylinders and about 5 engines on RVs,Cessnas,Pipers along with about to change 2 engines on one of our King Airs. Also have completed, along with about to complete a Phase 1-4 on the King Air as well. I have a good grasp on piston, but know I am lacking on the turbine side. What all would y'all recommend on both, AF and PP side for enough experience for the inspectors?
 

MercFE

Well-Known Member
Really, it's up to the inspector what they want to see. I know one of my FE buddies went in some time ago and was asked if he had ever changed a main bearing in a turbine. That inspector wouldn't help him out. However, he went to another the next day and got his signoff.

Agreed with the fabric thing, though. Hopefully don't get that question. Maybe if I promise to never touch a fabric wing...
 

Aggiepilot

Well-Known Member
'Oh the main bearing, yeah that thing... ummmm Nope. ' haha

Don't think that would fly to well with that inspector. I can tell the inspector that you need to make sure that you have the oil pressure line elbow on a 0-320-H2AD before you mount it on 172N because if you don't you are going to have one hell of a hard time doing it, if not taking the engine off again. Been there, done that. Also can tell him that the Lear Engineers must really hate mechanics!

I've been looking at a prep school down in Houston for the Oral and Practical, but have to get that sign off before then. I know it depends on the Inspector, but what type of documentation did/do y'all have for experience. I need to go back and up date a little log book, but as for oil changes when I was doing the club aircraft, it almost seems too repetitive especially when you have 5 aircraft doing between 50-70 hrs/month.
 
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