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Student pilot question on dual rating

Student Dualrated

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#1 Lmebane



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Posted 12 July 2018 - 22:01

So Im 22 yrs old and Im coming up on my check ride for my private license , the goal is commercial but its pretty expensive

My parents who are helping with most the finances are wanting me to look into getting my fixed wing as well to save money on flight time and also instrument training

I always sort of planned on getting my fixed wing eventually but The goal is still to be a commercial helicopter pilot

Could switching to fixed wing for building flight time and instrument rating have a negative or positive impact on my aviation career?

I do plan on continuing to fly helicopters at least 1-2 times a week to stay proficient if I do end up working toward being dual rated

#2 Fred0311


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Posted 13 July 2018 - 15:08

It could cut down the cost of your ratings but if you want to fly helicopters professionally you need to instruct. And to instruct in Robinsons you need 200 hours helicopter so you may as well do it all in helicopters or you'll end up paying for time building.

#3 Nearly Retired

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Posted 14 July 2018 - 07:51

As Fred says, yes, going fixed wing can lower the overall cost, BUT! employers are going to look at your total R/W time. That's what's important to you at the start of your career. If you want to be a professional helicopter pilot, fly helicopters.
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#4 TailEndCharlie


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Posted 14 July 2018 - 13:50

In my case, my high fixed wing time assisted in my first helo job. A nice benefit is that if you want to fly recreationally on the side, it's much more affordable.

#5 Bonzo828


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Posted Yesterday, 07:40

It all really depends on what your end goals are.  Are you wanting to fly helicopters for a living?  If so, I would spend my time energy and money on that.  It's not as cheap or easy, but if that's what you wanna do....

"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it" - The only thing we can control is our attitude.

#6 Whistlerpilot


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Posted Yesterday, 12:41

When you do the instrument rating only 15 hours of the 40 is required in a helicopter so you can save a little money by doing the maximimum allowed instrument training in an airplane. I recommend to do this at night because its totally realistic.

However as the others said, if you want to fly helicopters dont waste any precious training money on airplane time. When you are an experienced helicopter pilot down the road you can do an airplane add on for very little. Right now focus on getting your helicopter CFII and finding an instructor job. Good luck!

When life's path is steep keep your mind even.

#7 r22butters


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Posted Yesterday, 14:20

When you do the instrument rating only 15 hours of the 40 is required in a helicopter so you can save a little money by doing the maximimum allowed instrument training in an airplane. I recommend to do this at night because its totally realistic.


You know every time someone mentions instrument training someone else says, do it at night.  Now maybe it'd be different in a little Cessna ( I only have about four hours in fixed ) but at over 350 hours night, 40 hours under the hood, and as an IIMC survivor, I wouldn't be caught dead combining the two!  I mean 3,000' at night doing holding patters?,...yeeeks, I get dizzy just thinking about it!  :ph34r:


Now if my job required it sure, but then it'd probably be in a nice comfy twin with an experienced pilot / instructor. 


A brand new Private Pilot and a "time-building" instructor ( who most likely only has the minimum number of night hours himself ) in an R44 ( or Cessna for that matter )...?




,...but if you do, bring a vomit bag!  :wacko:

Well after fifteen and a half years they finally went from saying "the pilot shortage is coming", to "the pilot shortage is here!"  Yep, 2018, year of the pilot shortage!  


,...didn't seem that big a shortage though?  In fact if you blinked, you'd of missed it,...me, I was out taking a wiz,...dammit!  :lol:

#8 Eric Hunt

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Posted Yesterday, 19:07

Ahh, the joys of being "taught" by somebody with only 100 hours more than you have. No depth of experience to call upon when things do not follow the expected plan.


As Butters says, night flying has its own challenges, the instructor will be trying to see something outside to stay legal, while still watching what the dumb Bloggs is doing. And when the "instructor" is just a Bograt himself, the holes are starting to line up in your personal swiss cheese.

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