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Copyright ï¿½ 2002 AOPA.
| Training Tips |
| READING THE DIRECTIONS |
Anyone who has ever purchased an assembly-required product, begun to assemble it, and quickly become bogged down has been reminded of the adage, "When all else fails, read the instructions." Reading instructions may be a last resort for hooking up a computer or installing an air conditioner, but it's bad policy when preparing to fly an airplane or take a flight test.
Fortunately, it is never necessary to guess at requirements for earning a pilot certificate or rating. A booklet titled "Practical Test Standards" (PTS) exists for each certificate and rating. ( Click here to download the PTS for the Private Pilot Certificate-Airplane.) Be sure you have an up-to-date copy because test requirements change.
Everything you need to know to take your flight test is in the PTS. Responsibilities of the applicant, flight instructor, and examiner; prerequisites; what knowledge you'll have to demonstrate; and the standards to which you must perform maneuvers–it's all there. The PTS contains checklists to ensure that you bring everything you need for the checkride, and for showing the examiner that your test aircraft is acceptable. Think of using the PTS as complying with your obligation under the Federal Aviation Regulation 91.103: "Each pilot in command shall, before beginning a flight, become familiar with all available information concerning that flight."
Knowledge of the PTS is power (see the April 2001 AOPA Flight Training article). There will be no doubt as to acceptable performance for, let's say, a short-field landing (PTS Area of Operation IV, Task F). If you flew a stabilized approach, remained within tolerances of the recommended airspeed, touched down over the runway centerline with no side drift, within 200 feet beyond a specified point, etc., you performed acceptably. See the March 2001 AOPA Flight Training for how one flight instructor employs the PTS for checkride prep and beyond.
There are still some student pilots and flight instructors out there who do not follow the PTS. What standards are they using? Your flight test examiner will work from the PTS. A flight instructor who fails to use the PTS, or misjudges an applicant's readiness to perform to its requirements, risks having his or her own qualifications questioned as described in the May 2001 AOPA Flight Training article " Legal Briefing: The Weight of the World". If you train to the FAA's test standards, nothing should surprise you on the day of your checkride.
| Your Partner in Training |
|Should I choose a Part 61 or Part 141 school? Is there an easy mental note to use in recovering from an inadvertent spin? Are my flight-training expenses tax-deductible? No question is too tough or too trivial for our aviation specialists at 800/USA-AOPA. Do you have a question that you're too embarrassed to ask your flight instructor, or that must be answered quickly and you can't reach your instructor? Our specialists, who are either CFIs or experienced pilots, are available weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time to answer all your questions. |
As an AOPA Flight Training Trial Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online. For login information click here.
| Flight Training News |
| DIAMOND TRAINER GOES HIGH-CLASS |
Diamond Aircraft will exhibit a special edition of its DA20-C1 Katana at the Sun 'n Fun EAA Fly-In–a week-long fly-in and aviation show in Lakeland, Florida, that begins this Sunday. The two-place Katana is a popular training airplane. The special edition model includes a premium interior with redesigned plush leather seats, offering more shoulder and hip room; integral folding headrests; a larger, easily accessible luggage compartment; and improved ventilation. Exterior enhancements include streamlined wheel fairings, a silver lower fuselage, and high-visibility graphics. The modifications may be incorporated into future DA20 and DA40 aircraft. For more information visit the Web site or call Diamond Aircraft at 888/359-3220.
OLD PLANE PROVIDES SCHOLARSHIPS TO FOUR STUDENTS
Four aviation students at the University of North Dakota have been selected to receive $5,000 Gordon Kibby Scholarships. Casey Peasley, Michael Gruchalla, Travis Klumb, and Joshua Bicknese will receive the money, awarded by the North American Trainer Association to U.S. student pilots with demonstrated academic merit to help them complete their flight training. The awards are named for an enthusiastic pilot who spent several years restoring a World War II-vintage U.S. Navy SNJ-5 trainer from a truckload of parts to an airshow grand champion. Kibby contracted ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) and died in 1999; the proceeds from the sale of his airplane fund the scholarships for student pilots.
| Inside AOPA |
| FAA EVALUATES AOPA's PHOTO ID PROPOSAL |
The FAA has responded favorably to AOPA's proposal to require pilots to carry a valid government-issued form of photo identification when flying. The photo ID could be a driver's license, passport, state ID card, or government agency photo ID card. The FAA called the AOPA proposal "a positive short-term measure to enhance security throughout the general aviation community." The FAA told AOPA that it has begun drafting a regulatory document that considers the specifics of the proposal. See AOPA Online.
SELLING LIBERTY FOR SAFETY
Aircraft manufacturer EADS Socata will unveil a specially equipped and painted "Spirit of Liberty" Trinidad GT next Wednesday at the Sun 'n Fun EAA Fly-In in Lakeland, Florida. The airplane will be sold through the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's online auction, with the proceeds going to support the foundation's safety and education programs. The auction, which runs from May 1 through August 31, is open to all pilots; the winning bidder will be announced at AOPA Expo 2002 in October.
Changing your mailing or e-mail addresses? Click here to update.
| Training Products |
| STAR FLASH SIGNAL MIRROR FLOATS, PINPOINTS SIGNAL |
Necessary in any pilot's flight bag is survival equipment. Since space and weight are at a premium, consider the Star Flash signal mirror, which is feather-light and floats. Star Flash technology–a specially shaped pinpoint–allows the user to aim the flash as far as the eye can see. The mirror retails for $10.99. For more, contact Blair Enterprises at 866/593-8177.
| Final Exam |
| Question: I have a combination student pilot certificate/third class medical that was issued in July 1999. My CFI informed me that the student pilot certificate has expired even though my third class medical is good until July 2002. Is it true that the student certificate expires after two years? If so can I renew the student certificate without having to renew the third class medical at the same time? |
Answer: What your flight instructor told you is correct. You can get another student pilot certificate from a designated examiner or your local FSDO, whichever is more convenient for you. You'll need to fill out an 8710-1 Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application form. The new student pilot certificate will be valid for 24 months. Hang on to the old certificate–which is still your medical certificate–and for a record of your endorsements, which are still valid. AOPA's Guide to Learning to Fly discusses both the student pilot certificate and the medical certificate.
Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? E-mail to [email protected] or call 800/872-2672.
| Picture Perfect |
|Jump to the AOPA Online Gallery to see the featured airplane of the day. Click on the link for details on how to capture wallpaper for your work area. See AOPA Online. |
| What's New At AOPA Online |
| NEVER AGAIN, AGAIN |
A new, previously unpublished Never Again article can be read on AOPA Online. The most popular feature in AOPA Pilot magazine, Never Again is about instructive–and often frightening–flight experiences. To learn from the experiences of a fellow pilot who experienced nighttime optical illusions in Alaska, see AOPA Online.
| ePilot Calendar |
| Check your weekend weather on AOPA Online. |
WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS
Hartford, Connecticut. Prop 2002 Safety Seminar takes place April 12 and 13 for owners of Mitsubishi MU-2 aircraft. Contact Carol Cannon or visit the Web site for more information.
Berry Island, Bahamas. Coconut Water Fly-In takes place April 12 through 14 at the Chub Cay Yacht Club. Call 242/325-1490 for more information.
Boston, Massachusetts. The 106th Boston Marathon takes place April 15 with more than 30,000 athletes participating. For more information, visit the Web site.
For more airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online . For more events, see Aviation Calendar of Events
ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in in Atlanta and Boston, April 13 and 14. Clinics are scheduled in Denver, Tampa, and Salt Lake City, April 20 and 21. For the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule, see AOPA Online.
ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitterï¿½ Ground Schools will take place in in Tampa, Florida and Denver, Colorado, on April 20. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Indianapolis, Indiana and Little Rock, Arkansas, April 15; Rockford (Grand Rapids), Michigan, and Memphis, Tennessee, April 16; Bloomfield, Michigan and Murfreesboro, Tennessee, April 18; and Maryville, Tennessee, April 18. The topic is spatial disorientation. For more information, visit the Web site.
For comments on calendar items or to make submissions, contact [email protected].