Radio Communication...

mtsu_av8er

Well-Known Member
Question for all of you seasoned CFI's out there.

I'm working with a guy right now, and we're trying to get him ready for his CFII. He's been flying for about 3 years, and he has about 800 hours of flight time - with about 500 hours towing banners. Kind of a small-field, tail dragging, seat-of-the-pants type guy.

He hasn't flown on instruments for about 1-1/2 years, and only on about 2 or 3 flights since he passed his instrument checkride. Needless to say, he's a bit rusty on the instrument skills.He's alot better than you might expect, but he's still pretty far behind the airplane, and we're mostly working on just getting his performance back to that of an instrument pilot.

One of his biggest problems, however, is that this is the busiest airspace he's ever flown in. when it comes to the radio, he's struggling bad.

So, my question - how long do I let him struggle to get his statements out, before I stop him and read back the clearance? How long do I wait after he misses a clearance, before I acknowledge it?

This is weird, man!!!
 

CAVOK

New Member
Hmmmmmmmmm..
I'm not a "seasoned" CFII by any means, but I would maybe spend a couple hours going over radio communications in a tutor on the ground. In my experience with that stuff, the student has a lot better radio skills when they were expecting what transmission was coming next. Anticipating what ATC is going to tell you next helps a lot in radio communications. Just be careful not to have him anticipating too much. I have had students acknowledge a transmission that was never given to them!
 

jdflight

Well-Known Member
It depends on the call. Some absolutely need to be acknowledged right away. But I generally will let them miss a call twice before I pick it up.
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
mtsu I've faced this problem many times. Solutions I've used:

1) Loaned out my Sporty's scanner with all the approach and tower freqs programmed in.
2) Role playing before going to the plane (i.e. ok you're just handed off to approach at 1500' - call me up, I'm approach.)
3) Reading radio calls back to me before keying the mic.

I know there's more - I'll think of them right after I sign off of course.
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
Just another suggestion to add to the group.

From a comm standpoint, treat him like a student. I teach out of a busy Class D and one of the things I do is provide a sample "script" of likely communications with our Tower from initial contact after starting to last contact before shutdown.

It seems to do two things. It provides some familiarity with what to expect and the fact that what happens so closely resembles the script shows that ATC communication is, for the most part, very predictable. Both seem to add a level of comfort that helps learning the details.
 

pilotjww

New Member
All good suggestions. How about recording actual ATC/Pilot Comm at your own busy field from your intercom, and then type them up as the script already mentioned. Now they see it and hear it, both senses.
 

mtsu_av8er

Well-Known Member
Thanks for all of the tips, guys. JT, I actually considered your first 2 ideas. I like the idea of recording transmissions, as well. Like everyone said, I think if you're expecting certain transmissions, you'll be ready to respond!!

I'll make sure that I keep everyone informed!!
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
An experienced pilot is usually expecting the transmission before it arrives. This is a good indicator of Situational Awareness. I know I've freaked out some of my check ride candidates when I tell them what ATC is going to tell them seconds before it happens.

I find it's a good idea to listen to the chatter on the radio so you know what's going on around you. Often, I've been able to see a possible snafu before it happens.
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
An experienced pilot is usually expecting the transmission before it arrives. This is a good indicator of Situational Awareness. I know I've freaked out some of my check ride candidates when I tell them what ATC is going to tell them seconds before it happens.

[/ QUOTE ]It's especially cool when it's something unusual like a 180 on downwind.
 

kellwolf

Piece of Trash
Or "extend downwind, report over the Citrus Bowl." "Uh, 5157Z over the Citrus Bowl." "Roger 5157Z, continue downwind....."
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Yeah that would freak me out too. I usually expect 360s on downwind


[/ QUOTE ]Your winds down there must always blow from the same direction. I just got a 180 on downwind this evening when the winds shifted and we changed from using 35 to using 17.
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
Oh ok I getcha. Yeah sometimes they "turn the airport around" on us. I thought you were talking about the classic maneuver ATC uses to sequence traffic.

Kellwolf is that you I always see circling the Citrus Bowl?
 

kellwolf

Piece of Trash
I did pattern work for the first time in about six months the other day. It was UGLY to say the least. Give me a straight in, and I'm good. Too much instrument training, not enough VFR work.
 

Icelandair

New Member
Depends how busy your ATC area is. The guys in Grand Forks can get testy at times when students arse up the radio calls. Then again i can understand why, they work all day and probably are constantly dealing with students who can't use a radio. I usually help them after they start to panic or pause way too long otherwise ATC jumps on us to reply. If it was a little more laid back i'd let them miss a few and not be too bothered.
 

Jeff_S_KDTW

New Member
I didn't read all of the responses, so I apologize if this was already mentioned. However, have you considered having a mock ATC lesson. The lesson could simply be held on the ground and you act as ATC--giving IFR clearances, taxi instructions, tower instructions, enroute, etc.

Food for thought.
 

SteveC

Really?
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
I didn't read all of the responses, so I apologize if this was already mentioned. However, have you considered having a mock ATC lesson. The lesson could simply be held on the ground and you act as ATC--giving IFR clearances, taxi instructions, tower instructions, enroute, etc.

Food for thought.

[/ QUOTE ]

Quotes from the responses that you didn't read:

[ QUOTE ]
...but I would maybe spend a couple hours going over radio communications in a tutor on the ground. In my experience with that stuff, the student has a lot better radio skills when they were expecting what transmission was coming next...

[/ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
2) Role playing before going to the plane (i.e. ok you're just handed off to approach at 1500' - call me up, I'm approach.)

[/ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
From a comm standpoint, treat him like a student. I teach out of a busy Class D and one of the things I do is provide a sample "script" of likely communications with our Tower from initial contact after starting to last contact before shutdown.

It seems to do two things. It provides some familiarity with what to expect and the fact that what happens so closely resembles the script shows that ATC communication is, for the most part, very predictable. Both seem to add a level of comfort that helps learning the details.

[/ QUOTE ]

Why would you post a suggestion without reading the 14 posts ahead of yours to see if it was already covered? Is it more of a waste of time for you to read those posts than it is for 100 other people to read your duplicate suggestion?
[/rant]

Good suggestion, by the way.
 

SteveC

Really?
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
Oh Steve, are we grumpy today?


BTW, it looks like I'm not the only one say the same thing over and over.


[/ QUOTE ]

Grumpy? Yeah, suppose so. I'm working the non-flying job today.
Gotta unload on someone. You were handy.
 
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