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Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:47 pm
by gopherblack
Hi everyone,

Is it normal for flight clubs to have syllabus that extend way past 45 hour minimum limit for PPL? My flight club didn't let me solo until 24 hour because the syllabus demanded steep turns, stalls, circuits covered before. I am now at the finish of the PPL with only XCs remaining. I honestly feel bad because I couldn't complete in lesser time since now, I'll be completing my PPL close to 60ish mark. I worked hard and read before every lesson.

So is it normal for some syllabus' to take more hours than others.

Thanks in advance.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:24 am
by youhavecontrol
Having a few more lessons to improve beyond the minimum isn't always a bad thing, but you have to watch that your extra time is not being abused for the sake of more income. Having stalls, steep turns, spiral dives etc done before the first solo is a general requirement of all flight schools. Can't have students stalling on their first solo!!

The important thing is this: Do you feel you are learning new things and being challenged with each lesson? I have no problem with a flight school/club taking extra lessons beyond what's required, as long as the pilot comes out with more knowledge and safer habits. My flight school took a huge amount of time teaching us the finer points of short/soft field landings, low-level mountain navigation, unimproved airstrip operations, long-distance cross-country (650nm, plus) and overnight planning, low-level long distance dead-reconing, etc.. and yes, it was more expensive, but I learned a ton and that knowledge has made me an authority of sorts in the flight school I work at now, where many of the instructors did not have the opportunities I had during their training. Do I feel the extra hours were worth it for me? Absolutely 100%.

The important thing is that you are learning, the lessons have value to you and you are being respected by your instructor.

Most likely it's also for their insurance purposes, or perhaps an overall agreement the club made that a certain level of experience is required for their aircraft. Nothing wrong with that... it's their aircraft. If you don't feel like you're learning much or really progressing, it may be time to look for somewhere else, or have a talk with the CFI. They should appreciate feedback from their customers.

Some schools will allow you to view their syllabus online, or you can request one. Maybe you can compare some other schools/clubs to yours.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:21 am
by photofly
The syllabus for flight training in Canada is set by the government. All flight schools have to teach the same exercises, more or less in the same order. Whether a school talks about 45 or 60 hour training courses the fact remains that the average student in Canada has about 70 hours at the time of their flight test.

If you're not happy with your training talk to the chief flight instructor.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:24 am
by lhalliday
Flying a plane by yourself - even just in the circuit - requires that you have the bulk of your PPL training in place. You need slow flight, stalls, steep turns, slips, basic emergency procedures, even a bit of cross country. What do you do if there's an incident at the airport and you need to go somewhere else?

The first time my instructor asked if I wanted to solo I said no. I was ready, but there were bursts of arriving traffic (late Saturday afternoon) and I wasn't comfortable soloing in such conditions. When I soloed a couple of days later the tower held an arriving plane outside the zone because they had a first solo on short final. The next time they threw 270s and 360s at me, and changed the active runway. Twice.

...laura

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:12 pm
by geneticistx
enjoy the process

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:03 pm
by gopherblack
Thanks for the reply. Its certain that I'm learning something new every flight except for solo's where I just brush up my dual flights and practice some other things. My point was just that on reddit you hear people going solo at about 10 hours and I went at 24, after talking to CFI it was just that most people at our club go at around 25ish hours so I was thinking if it was a syllabus thing.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:35 pm
by lhalliday
People in Canada do not solo in 10 hours if they are taught according to the Transport Canada syllabus.

I soloed when I was ready. I knew when I was ready. So did my instructor.

...laura

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:54 pm
by photofly
Actually, 10 is doable, under the TC syllabus, just about. Even if the student doesn't have prior experience, or time in gliders. I don't imagine it's common though.
most people at our club go at around 25ish hours so I was thinking if it was a syllabus thing.
25 hours to solo is an ineffective instructor and/or lazy or incompetent student thing. Sometimes a combination of two or three.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:04 pm
by lhalliday
I just added up the flights from my 4th edition purple book and figured the minimum was about 12 hours. This would require nailing every exercise the first try. The sort of things I did leading up to my first solo included flying with my instructor to the airport I would divert to if anything went wrong on my first solo.

I wasn't counting. I was having way too much fun.

...laura

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:08 pm
by photofly
Ok. There's no minimum time for any of the exercises, and they don't need to be "nailed" before solo. Thinking that either is true would certainly count as incompetent instruction.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 6:59 pm
by Cat Driver
When you go solo is not all that important, unless of course you are taking way over the normal time.

When I learned to fly I soloed in 14 hours and finished my PPL in 30 hours which was the minimum time for the PPL in 1953.

Like others have said if you think your instructor is milking you talk to the CFI.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:47 pm
by gopherblack
photofly wrote:Actually, 10 is doable, under the TC syllabus, just about. Even if the student doesn't have prior experience, or time in gliders. I don't imagine it's common though.
most people at our club go at around 25ish hours so I was thinking if it was a syllabus thing.
25 hours to solo is an ineffective instructor and/or lazy or incompetent student thing. Sometimes a combination of two or three.
What I was told by my club is that 20+ish hours is normal at the club. Not sure how incompetent either I or my instructor is, because we have hardly spent more than 1 flight at a particular exercise except when it came to circuits when we spent a lot of time at. I'm really lost.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:50 pm
by gopherblack
lhalliday wrote:I just added up the flights from my 4th edition purple book and figured the minimum was about 12 hours. This would require nailing every exercise the first try. The sort of things I did leading up to my first solo included flying with my instructor to the airport I would divert to if anything went wrong on my first solo.

I wasn't counting. I was having way too much fun.

...laura
Did you learn proper diversion procedure before going up to your first solo?!

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 7:37 pm
by lhalliday
gopherblack wrote:Did you learn proper diversion procedure before going up to your first solo?!
Flight-test level diversions, no. Finding my way to other local airports and landing there, yes.

...laura

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 6:06 am
by photofly
I'm curious - how much pre-solo dual flight time did your instructor dedicate to teaching you to find your way to other airports and to land there?

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 6:10 am
by photofly
double post

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 9:45 am
by cgzro
I would have thought a lot depends on the airport you fly out of. Small, not busy uncontrolleed has to lead to faster solo compared to busy with a longish treck to a practice area.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:40 am
by lownslow
It seems a bunch of you have forgotten the first rule of Flight Club...

That out of the way, there's no good reason a dedicated student couldn't solo in 8 or so hours. Lesson one is attitudes and movements and that absolutely must be locked down. This is literally "How to fly an airplane," everything after is just finessing it. How good do you really need to be to get once around the field by yourself under ideal conditions about three minutes after repeatedly demonstrating it to your instructor?

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:29 am
by Aviatard
lownslow wrote: there's no good reason a dedicated student couldn't solo in 8 or so hours.
Landings. Landings are hard. Until you know how, then they're easy.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:00 pm
by lownslow
Aviatard wrote:Landings. Landings are hard. Until you know how, then they're easy.
Good landings are hard. Bad landings are easy. All landings are inevitable.

Re: Flight club syllabus question.

Posted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 12:03 pm
by ScottS
I wouldn't worry about it. If you are done in 60 hours it isn't exactly alarm bells that you are being milked and when you solo is not really relevant if you are still working through the syllabus. I think I soloed in 12 hours, but was still at 55 or so when finishing off the flight test. Worked hard, and had an absolute blast, and scored really high on the test so I must have learned something.

What it sounds like is that you are someone like me who sets super high standards for yourself and get a little discouraged when you don't meet them. You are possibly projecting the minimum time requirement as some sort of measure of aptitude of flying or teaching but it isn't really that simple as there are lots of factors that affect the hobbs ticking by. What you want to be measuring is that you are going to be one of the few qualified to hurl through the air in a aluminum can of magic anti-gravity juice! That's an accomplishment in itself, and then further measure yourself on being the safest most professional aviator you can be!