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1st Stage Check (pre-solo)

Kelly N.



Well, yesterday and today I went through my pre-solo stage check with the CP.


I did pretty good on most items (not perfect obviously, but he seemed pretty happy with my progress and ability to this point).


We went through:


Hover-autos - I'm not proficient with these yet, but I know what to do and have no doubt a few more attempts and I'll get them down.


Straight-in Auto - These are still something that I personally feel I need a lot of work on. However, today I called out the instrument and condition checks while doing the auto (instead of just trying to follow along as the CFI called them out) and it really helped - Trim, Airspeed, RPM, Spot (and repeat). Also, the CP flares way lower and more vertical than my normal CFI. It's pretty cool, but I worry about hitting the tail structure.


Settling with Power - No biggie. He would like me to lower collective a bit more and quicker but overall good recovery.


Low RPM recovery - Roll on throttle and down collective. No problem. Big thing to watch for is not to overspeed. I handled this with no issues.


Governor off flight - Let correlator do the work (mostly) and spot check periodically.


Shallow approach and Running Landings - I kept heading control on the first one but ground track wasn't good. Fixed it on the second. Need to work some more on those to be consistent.


Normal Approach - Cake.


Steep Approach - Crumb Cake. Took it all the way to the ground with no issues.


Max Power takeoff - Easy as . . . (wait for it). . . pie.


I did hose a few pickups where I popped off the ground once I got light instead of stabilizing light on the skids. So, I rushed it a bit and will work on those a few more times prior to solo.


Setdowns were pretty solid.


Hover Taxi to quickstop - First one was not super. I air taxied fine, but when he said "Stop", I wasn't expecting it and replied with the classic "Huh? Oh!" before actually doing it. Next one was good.


I need to work on keeping my speed steady during the pattern (I was focusing on gauges and the odd "surprise" equipment failure that the CP was inserting" on top of dealing with a bit of gusty wind on the second day).


Overall, went pretty smoothly. I'll have to take a written and, as I mentioned, do a few more pickups to make sure I'm smooth on the transition from ground to air.


The oral part of the stage check went pretty good. I need to review the warning light procedures a bit more, but overall no issues.


Next lesson is Sunday.


Safe Flying,




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