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January 20, 2017, issue of 'AOPA ePilot: Flight Training Edition'January 20, 2017, issue of 'AOPA ePilot: Flight Training Edition'

ePilot Flight Training Edition

January 20, 2017 - VOL 17, ISSUE 3

Training Tips

Sponsored by Aircraft Spruce

Runway conditions revisited

When the Northeast's winter took a brief break from bluster and cold in early January, many pilots found their airports beset by poor visibility and fog as arriving warm, moist air flowed in over the snow pack. But many runways and taxiways were still icy. Read more...  

Flight Training News


'A more empathetic system'

Elation hasn't been too strong a word to describe the reaction of many general aviation pilots to the FAA's Jan. 10 announcement of the new rule known as BasicMed. Some certificated flight instructors expressed surprise along with their elation upon learning that CFIs could continue serving their fellow pilots—and student pilots—without a medical certificate provided they meet the same qualifications as any other pilot choosing to forego an FAA medical exam and comply with the BasicMed provisions instead. Read more...  


AOPA Foundation focus

AV8RS scholarships awarded

Seven young people who are working toward goals in aviation have been named the 2016 award recipients of the AOPA AV8RS Scholarship Program. Read more...  



Flight school, college partner

Leading Edge Aviation, based in Bend, Oregon, announced a partnership with Central Oregon Community College to offer rotorcraft students a "top-of-the-line helicopter simulator" as part of its Part 141 flight training program. Read more...  


California rotary school expands to Texas

San Diego-based Coast Flight Training partnered with Envoy Air/American Airlines Group to open a second location in San Marcos, Texas, that focuses on training U.S. military helicopter pilots for fixed-wing civilian aviation careers. According to a news release, the flight school's Rotor Transition Program includes a conditional offer of employment. The program seeks rotary pilots who possess "valuable skills that can quickly translate to civilian employment," and allows for tuition assistance and a hiring bonus.


Flight school conference set for February

The Flight School Association of North America will host the eighth annual International Flight School Operators Conference Feb. 14 through 17 in Houston. Attendees will discuss regulations, issues facing flight schools, and recommended business practices, among other topics. The conference is geared toward flight school owners and managers as well as chief and assistant chief flight instructors. AOPA You Can Fly staff will attend. More information about the conference and registration is available on the organization's website.



Pinch hitting a King Air

The AOPA Air Safety Institute's Real Pilot Story: Pinch Hitting a King Air examines how a pilot maintained composure in the face of an intimidating situation. Doug White—who had never flown anything larger than a Cessna 172—was suddenly forced to fly the Beechcraft King Air 200 in which he was a passenger when the King Air pilot became incapacitated. Watch the video...  


NBAA flight attendant scholarship deadline nears

Applications for the National Business Aviation Association's Dale "Potsy" McBurney Aviation Scholarship for current or aspiring business aviation professionals are due Feb. 3. The award includes funds up to $3,500, and the scholarship will be awarded to a recipient who "embodies a commitment to excellence, as McBurney did." The winner will be announced in June at the association's Flight Attendants/Flight Technicians Conference in Long Beach, California.


AOPA Live This Week

BasicMed enthusiasm; Speed from Cessna

Hop on board Cessna's speedy TTx, a composite piston single that can give the Cirrus SR22T a run for its money. Learn more about BasicMed, which has prompted a barrage of calls to the AOPA Pilot Information Center, and how this new alternative medical certification can help get you back in the air. Watch high school students learn science, technology, engineering, and math, and spark a passion for aviation as they build a Van's Aircraft RV with help from AOPA's You Can Fly initiative. Watch AOPA Live This Week®, Jan. 19...  

Plane Spotter

The secret of slow

Many design improvements make aircraft go faster, but Mexico, Missouri-based Zenith Aircraft is well known for producing aircraft that fly slower. Its thick-winged Zenith STOL CH 701 was introduced in 1986 as an "off airport" kitplane that can take off from 90 feet of pavement or 120 feet of "unprepared grass." Full-span "flaperons" help with spotting the all-metal airplane that weighs in as a light sport aircraft. Don't confine your search to airports: You might spot an example of Chris Heintz's design operating from "backyard fields and remote rural areas."

Training Products and Resources

Sturdy new compact LED Flightlight multitasks

Aviation Supplies & Academics' new weather-resistant aluminum-bodied flashlight can toggle between red, green, and white with the flip of a bottom-mounted switch. ASA says the adjustable beam has an LED life of 100,000 hours, and three AAA batteries can power the Flightlight for up to 17 hours. ASA's Brian Snider said the light is "the best one we've carried." An AOPA staffer tried the device in a variety of conditions, and it performed flawlessly. The Flightlight is available online from ASA for $19.95.

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

Pilot Protection Services

Managing the paper chase

If you've had an application for a medical certificate deferred to the FAA, you understand the importance of providing good documentation to support your application. AOPA Director of the Pilot Information Center's Medical Certification Section Gary Crump offers tips for dealing with the FAA. Read more...  


AOPA Aviation Finance

Why does an aircraft loan take longer than a car loan?

Often car buyers can be approved for a car loan in 10 to 20 minutes, so why can't a $45,000 airplane loan be that simple and fast? Airplane loans take one or two days to approve, and sometimes longer depending on the financial complexity and number of borrowers. Read more...  


Member benefit

AOPA Group AD&D: No exclusions for today's pilots

AOPA Insurance Services has met with insurance companies to educate them about general aviation activities and the needs of AOPA members. The company has worked diligently to make sure the AOPA-sponsored Group Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance Plan does not have any general aviation exclusions. The coverage is available only to AOPA members. Read more...  


Pay formulas

Getting ready to enter the airlines? Airline pilot and Flight Training blogger Chip Wright breaks down how to figure out what duties you will get paid for as well as how to calculate a rough annual income. Read more...  

Instrument Tip

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Given equipment and weather, can you fly this trip?

If a trip to the sunny Bahamas sounds appealing this winter, test your IFR flight planning proficiency first with the AOPA Air Safety Institute's IFR Quiz: Winter Escape. Contemplating weather at your planned fuel stop, could you make it to the beach? Take the quiz...

Final Exam


What is Operation Lights On?


Operation Lights On is an FAA voluntary pilot safety program. It is described in section 4-2-23 of the Aeronautical Information Manual as a program developed "to enhance the see-and-avoid concept" by encouraging pilots to keep their landing lights on during operations such as takeoff or flight below 10,000 feet day or night, within 10 miles of any airport, in reduced visibility, and in areas where birds congregate. Remember, "not all aircraft are equipped with lights and some pilots may not have their lights turned on," so you should always keep a sharp lookout for other aircraft.

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

Aviation job board

Job of the week: Jetstream Aviation flight instructor

Jetstream Aviation in Boise, Idaho, is looking for a full-time flight instructor. This is an entry-level position that offers the opportunity to get second-in-command time in a King Air B200 and Phenom 100. Read the full job description and apply today!


AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? AOPA is looking for a legal services plan attorney, accountant, graphic designer and digital asset manager, aviation event operations senior manager, flying clubs initiative director, travel and destination products director, insurance program administration manager, account executive, donor relations director, aviation technical specialist, aviation financial analyst, production specialist, and technical customer support. To learn more about these and other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Jan 21-22 - San Antonio, Texas; Portland, Oregon; and Long Beach, California

Feb 11-12 - Fort Worth, Texas; Louisville, Kentucky; Nashua, New Hampshire; and Kenner, Louisiana

Feb 18-19 - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Lake Mary, Florida; and Sacramento, California

Feb 25-26 - Fairfax, Virginia; and Las Vegas, Nevada

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

Jan 23 - Mesa, Arizona; and Van Nuys, California

Jan 24 - Tucson, Arizona; and Ontario, California

Jan 25 - Santa Ana, California

Jan 26 - Albuquerque, New Mexico; and San Diego, California

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

Rusty Pilots Seminars

Jan 21 - Fort Worth, Texas; Lufkin, Texas; and Keene, New Hampshire

Jan 27 - Sebring, Florida

Jan 28 - Las Cruces, New Mexico; San Antonio, Texas; Mesa, Arizona; Bethany, Oklahoma; Seattle, Washington; and Greencastle, Indiana

Feb 4 - Hammond, Louisiana; Nashville, Tennessee; Friday Harbor, Washington; and Murrieta, California

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
Dan Namowitz
David Tulis

Production Team:

Elizabeth Linares
Melissa Whitehouse


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

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