PPL Frustrations

DrBenny

New Member
ARGGGGG! It has mostly been my fault (or more precisely, the fault of my schedule), but I have been a long time in finishing up this PPL. On the bright side, my CFI said that even though I'm a primary student, I'm already 1/3rd of the way to the IR. Stunned, I asked how this could be? The answer was in my logbook: about 60 ILS approaches (20 to mins), 5 hrs actual, 7 flights on an IFR flight plan, plenty of comm practice with ATC training out of a class B. His summary: "Long PPL, short IR." But here's the problem:

Wife says that after I get the PPL I have to cool it for awhile. But CFI says I'm already 1/3rd of the way to the IR. What do you guys think? I have three ideas:

1) Go right on to the IR. Benefits: will get it done faster, and will transition into that training quickly and smoothly. Drawbacks: continue to spend money; annoy wife.

2) Don't start the actual training right away, but do the self-study thing, only starting the flying after I pass the written. Benefits: breaks things up a bit; gives me a few months to save money; wife will like it better.

3) Just cool it for a few months and fly some fun cross-countries. Benefits: biggest money-saver; get to simply enjoy flying (as opposed to training). Drawbacks: may get rusty when I'm out of the high-intensity training mode. Might lose ambition to get IR.

Thoughts? Other options? Plan 4 or 5?
 

eodfe

New Member
Go right into it. Just face it,anything we do annoys the better halfs!

If you want to really annoy her, go by Jackass the movie on DVD, most women I know that saw the movie, thought it was the most "assine and childest" thing they ever saw!










Disclaimer: This post was meant in pure jest. At no time was it intended to degrade the female sex. As a matter of fact, I think my Mother was a female!
 

farwellbooth

Well-Known Member
How much cross country time do you have? You need 50 under part 61 for your IR so you could work on some of that prior to your IR. And it's great practice and fun to be alone or w/ a friend/wife etc. to go somewhere and get some utility out of your rating.
 

E_Dawg

Moderator
Hey man almost 100% of private students end up taking at least a little longer than expected. No worries there. Hell I took 75 hours and only planned on 50. Needless to say my wallet was empty (save for the cert!!!) after completion.

As for the question... maybe #2 is the best choice as it is a decent compromise. It sounds like your skills are pretty solid if you've been flying ILSs to mins as student, so it shouldn't be too hard to pick them back up again. Also, the IR is definately a good idea if your area has lots of IMC (sounds like it does).

Maybe the best thing is to cool it for a month or so and start studying for the instrument as you said in #2 (it's like 80% knowledge 20% flying). While doing so you can take the wife flying and show her exactly why you like flying so much.

Good luck!
 

aviator

New Member
I think it's a little ridiculous for a student pilot to be flying 60 instrument approaches in the first place, is there some reason for all the instrument work? Without the foundation of an instrument ground school/self study course the benifits of soo many approaches is small.

ILS approaches won't be on your PPL checkride, you won't be shooting them right after you get your ticket, what's the point? The instrument work for a private is really only to be used in emergency situations (inadvertant flight into IMC) and should focus on these types of secenarios.

One or two approaches just to demonstrate how their done is fine but 60? This is something I would suggest going over with your CFI, flight time is expensive he/she should be utilizing it more productively...

Good luck finishing up the rating
 

panampilot

New Member
I totally back up Aviator. Why the hell is this guying flying so many approaches with you. It seems to me that he's wasting your money.

That doesn't mean you shouldn't fly a couple of approaches and spend some good quality time under the hood but come on.

I'd call him on it. That time spent shooting approaches could have been used much more wisely.
 

DrBenny

New Member
Ahh, the ILS approaches. Yes. I think I can clear up the confusion.

I train out of a busy Class B airport (BWI), and EVERY runway has an ILS. When returning to the airport, we are almost always given a long final to a given runway. We almost never get to fly a pattern (we do that at the other local airports). So. . . . you're on long final anyway, might as well put on the hood and fly that ILS!

It's a great way to finish off a cross-country!
 

DrBenny

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
How much cross country time do you have? You need 50 under part 61 for your IR so you could work on some of that prior to your IR. And it's great practice and fun to be alone or w/ a friend/wife etc. to go somewhere and get some utility out of your rating.

[/ QUOTE ]

Excellent points. I have about 10 hours right now and will probably finish with 15. Good plan!
 

Jason

Well-Known Member
Dr Benny - You need to sit down and have a serious talk with your CFI - and if you don't want to have him send me an email and I will discuss the situation with him - he is doing you an unbelieveable disservice!! Private pilot training is NOT the time to be practicing approaches. PERIOD. There should be a basic introduction to instrument flying and perhaps a discussion of appraoch basics and maybe even flying a few but 60 ILS's is absolutley ridiculous!! Wether you're flying patterns or straight in's you need to be looking outside and developing the ability to judge your approach on visual cues. What you don't realize is that once you get your instrument ticket in alot of ways your visual skills become ever more important! When flying instrument approaches other than ILS's when you break out of the clouds you must have the ability to quickly and precisely transition to a visual situation and take the appropriate actions. This can be very difficult especially at night and can be very dangerous if you never developed those visual skills during initial training.

Put simply - your CFI is wasting your money and your time. There is absolutley no reason for this. He should not be teaching you ILS approaches - he should be teaching you how to fly long finals visually. If you must tune in a localizer to find the airport then you need to be working on pilotage skills not localizer tracking.

To put it in perspective I fly a business jet professionally all over the world. You have so far logged more ILS approaches than I have in the past 2 years. In the real world you don't fly all that many actual instrument approaches - what I do rely on during every single approach and landing is my ability to look outside the window and fly the approach by outside visual references.

Off my soap box,

Jason

PS - Will an active CFI please correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't the cross country requirement have to be post private PIC??
 

stuckingfk

Well-Known Member
Jason, I am not a CFI, but I was told by my CFI that the solo x-country time during your private pilot training does count towards x-country requirment for the instrument rating.
 

DrBenny

New Member
Thanks for your thoughts, Jason. Well, we've done quite a lot of pattern work (including night), and I feel comfortable with it. I always practice the PTS basics, even if I'm doing an x-c.

This really isn't his "fault." Blame me if you want. I have already been studying for the IR, and it was I who requested to do those ILSs. Now again, I'm on long final--and I've landed this way visually many times, so I requested the practice. I do find that it has helped me greatly to learn power and pitch management, and, of course, flying the instruments.

And the other reason you can blame me for doing them is that they are FUN! I mean, love flying those needles down to 300 or so feet AGL, and then going visual. Of course, I only do this when I'm with the CFI--I'm no fool. It is SO satisfying to see the runway right where it should be, and me on a stabilized approach.

BUT, you're probably right. I've got those ILSs down. In the next couple of months, as I finish up, I'll take your advice and stick to visual only (except for the VOR tracking practice, which is required).
 

DrBenny

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
I second that, any cross country as student pilot can be applied to instrument.

[/ QUOTE ]
That is correct. In a way, I think it ought to be 50 hours as PIC, but it isn't (anymore).
 

E_Dawg

Moderator
WTF!!?! I never heard of that one.... This is copied directly from the FARS:

"(1) At least 50 hours of cross-country flight time as pilot in command, of which at least 10 hours must be in airplanes for an instrument -- airplane rating;"

You are absouletely correct to log PIC on solo cross countries, and if it is more than 50nm, then it can be counted toward the Instrument.

At least you damn well better be able to because I have the practical in 3 hours!!!!

Guess we'll find out
 

DrBenny

New Member
I'm away from my copy of the FARs. Could you give me the exact reference so I can look it up?

Thanks!
 

Mavmb

Well-Known Member
I agree with Jason. Your CFI should be having you focus on one license at a time. However, what's done is done. And I think you should go for your instrument right away since it's fresh in your head. Explain to your wife that it will be cheaper this way instead of paying for extra training resulting from a large hiatus between the ratings.
 

DrBenny

New Member
Thank you for your thoughts. Don't feel that I've been taken advantage of. I am not a fresh-faced twenty-something all agog at the consummate mastery of the mythical flying powers of my CFI. Like I say, I know full well that in some ways I was getting ahead of myself.

But what one must realize is that training out of Class B is in many ways different from other places. I am very lucky indeed. I get the benefits of a professional environment along with the inherent expectation that precision flying and communication is required. If you can fly at BWI, you can fly anywhere.

Again, it was usually I who requested those ILSs. As you are all aware, even in CAVU, riding the needles is precision flying. I am very much keen on improving superlative flying in its many forms. I am able already to fly long finals visually, so I enjoyed the extra challenge of flying ILSs. These were certainly not forced upon me by my CFI.

Remember, too, that we go short runways to practice pattern work, I've flown to the mountains and to the ocean on two cross countries so far. Many times my CFI covers the instrument panel and forces me to set power in the pattern by feel and hearing. I'm not "missing" anything, folks; if anything, I am getting more experience. Finally, my CFI knows that there is an IR in my future, or he most likely wouldn't have agreed to the ILSs.

The phrase "what's done is done" implies either that I have been cheated out of an experience which is certainly not true, or cheated out of money (which is also not true, as I am fully aware of the "standard" syllabus).

Dr. Benny

[ QUOTE ]
I agree with Jason. Your CFI should be having you focus on one license at a time. However, what's done is done. And I think you should go for your instrument right away since it's fresh in your head. Explain to your wife that it will be cheaper this way instead of paying for extra training resulting from a large hiatus between the ratings.

[/ QUOTE ]
 

Kingairer

'Tiger Team' Member
Sounds great...Now go get your private pilots license so you will have something to show for it all.
 
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