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September 23, 2016, issue of 'AOPA ePilot: Flight Training Edition'September 23, 2016, issue of 'AOPA ePilot: Flight Training Edition'

ePilot Flight Training Edition

September 23, 2016 - VOL 16, ISSUE 39

Training Tips

Sponsored by Aircraft Spruce

Windsock ways

You studied the terminal forecast, listened to the automated weather observation, and determined which runway local traffic is using. Now a confirming glance at the windsock will give you your best sense of the wind before takeoff. What else can the windsock tell you? Read more...  

Flight Training News


Instructional safety record improves

Student pilots appear to be doing a better job of landing—both with and without their instructors' help, according to an analysis of accident data from the most recent Joseph T. Nall Report from the AOPA Air Safety Institute. Instructional flying—one of the safest realms of general aviation—saw an improved safety record in 2013 and 2014. Read more...  



CAP honors aerospace cadet

A summer glider camp ended up pointing Civil Air Patrol cadet Austin Dillow in the right direction when he soloed a sailplane. "That really sealed the deal for me," said the 2016 Aerospace Education Cadet of the Year. Now a student at Johns Hopkins University, Dillow has his private pilot certificate. Read more...  



Drone classes fill fast

The owner and staff at Murfreesboro Aviation in Tennessee did not expect the new drone pilot ground school to be quite so popular, but the seats sold out within hours. The flight school is now considering adding hands-on training for drone operators. Read more...  


Texas high school offers airplane build class

Engineering teacher Dan Weyant wanted to offer a Vans Aircraft RV-12 airplane build project for his Georgetown, Texas, high school students, but he needed buy-in from the school system. His solution was direct: "I just asked." Read more...  



Prescott Fly-In welcomes you

Come to Arizona's Ernest A. Love Field Airport Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, and join fellow pilots and aviation enthusiasts at the AOPA Fly-In. From the Barnstormers Party to the aircraft display, the fun starts when you arrive at Prescott. Watch the fly-in procedures video and download the pilot information packet at the end of the video for in-depth details. Watch the video...  


Online resource

Deadline approaches for AOPA teen scholarships

Teenagers between the ages of 13 and 18 have until Sept. 30 to apply for $115,000 in scholarships through the AOPA You Can Fly High School Flight Training Scholarship and AOPA AV8RS Scholarship programs. Twenty flight training scholarships will be awarded to high school students ages 15 to 18, and four scholarships will be awarded to AOPA AV8RS members ages 13 to 18. Learn more about the scholarships and apply today...  


AOPA Live This Week

Hope on wings; No blues in Battle Creek

Travel to Africa, where pilots committed to helping others must manage risks that lurk amid a landscape of stunning beauty to fulfill their much-needed missions. Also this week, showers didn't dampen spirits at AOPA's Fly-In at Battle Creek, Michigan, and from the home of the last AOPA Fly-In of 2016: A laboratory in Arizona teaches the next generation of safety investigators with a one-of-a-kind approach. Watch AOPA Live This Week®, Sept. 22...  

Plane Spotter

Pazmany's prototype

Plane spotting is a productive pastime at events like a weekend fly-in at a country airport, where you can expect to see a delightful variety of familiar and unusual aircraft drop in for a visit. That was the case recently at South Carolina's Triple Tree Aerodrome, where an amateur-built Pazmany PL-1 stopped by—distinctive as a canopied, side-by-side, two-place airplane with 13-gallon fuel tanks at the tip of each wing. The aerobatics-capable trainer was the prototype of a line of single-engine aircraft designs by the noted aeronautical engineer Ladislao Pazmany.

Training Products and Resources

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Weighing weather

Unanticipated instrument conditions can adversely impact your flight—regardless of whether you have an instrument rating. Learn to recognize how gradually lowering ceilings and visibility can be deceptive and lure you to fly VFR into IMC. The AOPA Air Safety Institute's Weather Wise: Ceiling and Visibility online course provides ammunition to guard against trouble when clouds and Mother Earth begin to touch, and temperature and dew point converge. Take the course...


Sporty's launches UAS safety course

Sporty's Pilot Shop has partnered with the Unmanned Safety Institute for a drone training course that helps remote pilots prepare for the FAA's Part 107 remote pilot knowledge test required for commercial drone operations. The UAS Safety Awareness Course presents more than three hours of study material that focuses on airspace, safety, flight planning, and more. Quizzes emphasize the material, and the course includes a completion certificate. The course is available online from Sporty's for $199.

Note: Products listed have not been evaluated by ePilot editors unless otherwise noted. AOPA assumes no responsibility for products or services listed or for claims or actions by manufacturers or vendors.

Member Benefits

Online resource

Be a part of AOPA's Brickyard Bash

The Red Bull Air Race World Championship is coming to Indianapolis Oct. 1 and 2, and spectators have the chance to party at the AOPA Brickyard Bash at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway's Yard of Bricks. Alternative rock band Edisun will perform live while attendees enjoy food and drinks. General admission to the AOPA Brickyard Bash is $30, but AOPA members can get a $10 discount by purchasing tickets using a special promo code. Read more...  


Briefing approaches and departures

Professional pilots conduct approach and departure briefings every day, even for approaches that they regularly fly. If you are preparing for an airline interview, Flight Training blogger Chip Wright recommends practicing briefings, which will be a part of the interview process. Read more...  

Instrument Tip

Pilot Protection Services

Cleared for the approach: When to descend

A pilot is maintaining a previously assigned altitude and receiving radar vectors to the initial approach fix of an ILS approach to a towered airport. Prior to reaching the fix, the pilot is "cleared for the approach" and immediately begins a descent to the published altitude of the first segment of the instrument approach procedure. However, the pilot is quickly instructed by ATC to return to the assigned altitude and is informed of a possible pilot deviation. What should the pilot have done? Read more...  

Final Exam


As a student pilot, once I solo, can I carry passengers?


No. Your flight instructor should discuss this with you before you solo. The general limitations for student pilots are specified in 14 CFR Part 61.89. Among other restrictions, a student pilot cannot act as pilot in command of an aircraft that is carrying passengers or is carrying property for compensation or hire. After you receive your pilot certificate, you will be able to take your friends and family flying. For more information about student pilot issues, read the FAA's Student Pilot Guide.

Did you know that student pilots who join AOPA are three times more likely to complete their flight training? Membership includes unlimited access to aviation information by phone (800/USA-AOPA, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time) or from AOPA Online. Got a question for our technical services staff? Contact AOPA.

Career Opportunities

AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? AOPA is looking for a government affairs federal and state vice president, Central Southwest regional manager, Great Lakes regional manager, account executive, annual giving manager, donor relations director, development communications director, high school aviation initiative manager, flying clubs initiative senior manager, New York You Can Fly ambassador, aviation technical specialist, product marketing specialist, and advertising-marketing coordinator. To learn more about these and other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Sep 24-25 - Colorado Springs, Colorado

Oct 1-2 - Windsor Locks, Connecticut; and Hollywood, Florida

Oct 8-9 - Santa Clara, California; and Nashville, Tennessee

Oct 15-16 - Columbia, South Carolina; Indianapolis, Indiana; and Wichita, Kansas

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the Air Safety Institute's Online eFIRC.

Air Safety Institute Safety Seminars

Sep 26 - Jacksonville, Florida; Ypsilanti, Michigan; and Northbrook, Illinois

Sep 27 - Daytona Beach, Florida; Independence, Ohio; and Lisle, Illinois

Sep 28 - Owensboro, Kentucky; Melbourne, Florida; Columbus, Ohio; East Peoria, Illinois; and Fort Worth, Texas

Sep 29 - Ocala, Florida; Batavia, Ohio; Rockford, Illinois; and Addison, Texas

Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Rusty Pilots Seminars

Sep 24 - Westminster, Maryland; and Columbus, Ohio

Oct 1 - Prescott, Arizona; Wichita, Kansas; Camarillo, California; Renton, Washington; and Carlsbad, California

Oct 7 - Fort Myers, Florida

Oct 8 - Stevensville, Maryland; Pearland, Texas; Watkins, Colorado; and Grantsburg, Wisconsin

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Aviation Calendar

Want something to do this weekend? Planning an aviation getaway? See AOPA's enhanced calendar of events. You can filter events by date range, airport ID, state, or region. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.

To include an event or to search all events in the calendar, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA Airports. AOPA does not endorse or assume responsibility for the events submitted and listed in the calendar.

ePilot Flight Training Editors:

Alyssa Miller
Jim Moore
David Tulis

Production Assistant:

Melissa Whitehouse


Mike Collins
Sarah Deener
Dave Hirschman
Tom Horne
Alton K. Marsh
Warren Morningstar
Dan Namowitz
Jill W. Tallman
Ian J. Twombly
Julie Summers Walker

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