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rjl2001

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rjl2001 last won the day on March 1 2012

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About rjl2001

  • Birthday 12/12/1982

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    Florida Panhandle
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    aviation, motorcycles, kayak-fishing, guns

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  1. http://www.wptv.com/news/region-c-palm-beach-county/lantana/victims-of-lantana-helicopter-crash-identified Sad news out of Palm Beach. At least one is likely to survive. Thoughts are with the victim and his family.
  2. I remember reading about at least one other incident in recent years where a MEX military helicopter violated US airspace. The incident got little attention and don't think any real action was taken by the US. I would think that shots being fired crosses the line though, bad pun intended. Outside the realm of helicopters, in the last few years I think there was also a ground incursion of MEX soldiers into the US where they either drew weapons or fired upon CBP Agents. Such stories seem to get little media coverage. My thinking is that most any other sovereign nation these days would treat such acts by their neighbors as an act of war. I don't want to get into the politics here, but it is appalling to me that the United States of America does not place a higher priority on protecting and securing its own borders. What is being done to get our Marine home is a whole other story, though it would be nice if your theory played out. For the sake of staying somewhat on topic, I wonder what kind of helicopter this was and what if any sort of Aerial Use of Force policy or ROE's the Mexican police have?
  3. Just curious, dose the LOA or drug program info have to be visibly posted at the location?
  4. Fred, thanks for the advice. I ended up talking to the owner some more and that was more or less what they said. Mikemv, yes sir. Looks like the school also deals with international students, so that's something else I need to look into more. Hobe, good questions and something for me to consider. Astro, I'll leave those higher level endeavors to the boss. Though I did ask if 141 certification was something they were planning, but apparently need to be in business for 24 months first, so that's still a ways off for them. Azhigher, reminds me of a couple other recent topics on here. Unfortunately, I try to be very honest with everyone and also keep informed about the state of the helicopter industry. Flying Pig, maybe wasn't the last school I thought about but after over a year of applying to everyone that owned a helicopter, I'm excited for any opportunity no matter how big/small. (edit: reread my post and I see where you got that impression)
  5. I'm hoping that in the near future I'll be working as a CFI. The job I'm hoping to get is with a smaller school, that is still new and in the growing stage. It sounds like as of now they don't have too many regular students, though they're starting to get more people walk-in and interested in intro flights, etc. Obviously, I would like to fly enough that I can pay the bills and afford a place to live, as well as help grow the school. Do any of you have any tips or suggestions on things I could do to try and bring in more students to the school? I'm not going to go buy a billboard or something, I'll leave that to the owner who surely knows more about those things than I do. I'm just starting to think about ways I could help the school by doing something myself that might get people interested in learning to fly. Are there any books that cover the topic? From the brief Google-ing I've done I haven't come up with anything.
  6. If it's any help, I was in a new 407GX a couple weeks ago and took a few photos with my cell phone. Not sure if this attaches them at full resolution or not though. Also, I just remembered that the annual Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA) Expo is being held in Phoenix this year in July. I'm almost willing to bet that there will be a 407GX at the expo, or maybe you could call someone at ALEA directly to inquire whether there will be one there. Just a thought.
  7. As a former student at both Leading Edge Aviation and Guidance Aviation I would highly recommend either of them to a fellow veteran looking to get into this endeavor. I know an instructor at Upper Limit Aviation in TN, and I think he did tell me that having worked there now that ULA wouldn't be at the top of his list if he were starting training again. I recently moved to central Florida and have noticed Ocean Helicopters has a really good reputation down here. I think Ocean Helicopters, Palm Beach Helicopters, and Cloud 9 are all options for training providers at the Palm Beach Community College helicopter program that is VA approved also. My suggestion is to visit as many programs as you can in person before making a decision.
  8. That kind of sounds like a long shot to me. But you won't know unless you try. Years ago when I was in the CG, I found out that I lacked normal depth perception. I took flight physicals with a Navy doc, a CG doc, a USAF doc, and saw a few civilian optometrists, and always failed DP tests. I asked around for years, but never met a pilot in any branch that had heard of a waiver given for depth perception to a new candidate. I only say that because during that time I had a couple pilots tell me they had heard of waivers for people with color blindness. So it doesn't sound unprecedented at least. Best of luck with it, and hope you get some help on here. I didn't have any problem getting my helicopter CFII as a civilian, so that could always be a back up plan.
  9. I am pretty sure you could find a program using the Post 9/11 GI Bill to work with you to accomplish what you're looking to do. Your best bet would be to call and speak with the right point-of-contact at the flight school and college, of whichever programs you're interested in. Look for the program chair or department chair at the college, and either the owner or VA liaison at the flight school. My experience has been that schools can be a little flexible from the standard course curriculum to accommodate students with different circumstances. While I was in the program at Embry-Riddle in Prescott, there were three former Army CWO pilots starting out in the course also. It's been a while so I forget the specifics, but don't recall any issues with them getting the Robbie hours for the SFAR 73 CFI endorsement. There were however some disagreements I remember when they had to relearn some things differently than the "Army way." That flight school was Universal Helicopters or UHI, so at the least I would think they could give you some insight into how that would work.
  10. I think why you don't hear/see more information about people getting tour jobs in eastern TN, is simply because of the number of those jobs that there are in that area. The Grand Canyon and Las Vegas areas are home to some of the largest sightseeing tour companies in the nation. So even though there may be a reasonable amount of tour companies in that TN area, there are probably many fewer tour pilot positions there than in the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas. Being from FL I'm more familiar with this part of the South, and there are a lot of helicopter sightseeing companies in FL alone. That being said many of those are what I would call small operations, having one or two helicopters (usually R44 or B206). From my experience it seems like quite a few of these tour companies know people from the other companies personally, I guess it's true when they say the heli business is a small world. I also think $30,000 is probably more than even 'a little optimistic' for starting pay at many of these tour companies. I would expect in most cases the pay is similar to flight instructing. Though I have heard tour pilots can make tips that might add up nicely by the end of the year . Obviously your 30 hours of Jet Ranger time is beneficial, probably more so to tour companies with turbine helicopters in their fleet. But I wouldn't count on that alone to 'set you apart' very much. I've talked to a few owners of tour companies here in FL in the past couple weeks, and each one said in some way or another that flight time numbers alone often aren't the best indicator of the caliber of employee they end up with. Obviously your flying proficiency and attention to safety is important, but one owner told me he would rather hire a professional minded 250hr pilot versus a 1000hr pilot who lacked professionalism. Because many of these tour operations are so small, they often want pilots who can help out with other parts of the business and not just flying (marketing, accounting, photo taking, landscaping, etc.) My advice would be to speak with the tour companies directly to find out more information, and visiting in person when possible is always best. Even here in FL I hear Sevier County Choppers come up a lot in conversations, so that's a probably a good place to start talking to people. Even when training at a different school, I don't see anything wrong with visiting other places and asking for information. Oh ya, that R44 in Destin flying off of the barge belongs to Timberview Helicopters. It does seem like a pretty sweet setup. I will add though that the local government has been fighting with that company for at least 3 years, even as recently as a couple months ago the local newspaper printed a negative article about them. They also operate in a few other cities and/or states. Also, I'm sure it goes without saying, but make sure to focus on getting that CFI job at your school when you're done training. I'm one of the unemployed CFII's out there, and can attest to how challenging it can be to find that first job. - Forgot to add that for these kinds of tour pilot jobs at smaller companies, often times the job openings aren't publically advertised. They will have an opening and fill that opening without ever posting a vacancy online anywhere. Seems like an informal type of networking or word of mouth system is often relied upon.
  11. Glad you made it back to the ramp OK. I'll also be curious if you learn anything more about what caused this.
  12. If I'm understanding this, Rick answered that question: "Even if the unit was installed at the factory, there will be a supplement for the unit in the flight manual. Or as a supplement to the flight manual." So regardless of whether it was installed at the factory or added later with an accompanying STC, there should still be a supplement in or with that RFM.
  13. JD, iChris, and Rick.. that is some great information. This is why I love this website. I brought it up with three different instructors at the school and got three different answers, all of which are apparently incorrect. One was sure that the only thing needed to upgrade a GNS430 to GNS430W is that the memory card is plugged into the computer and then that will 'unlock' the WAAS capabilites. Another instructor was adamant that no STC's exist for GPS/avionics installations because it 'doesn't change any of the characteristics of the aircraft'. The other said that because it is a VFR only aircraft that even if there were STC's it would not apply at all. None of them had any knowledge about RFM supplements. I was told the school commonly swaps different GPS units from one aircraft to another, and all that's needed is a logbook entry. As the discussion continued it was also stated that any new instrument or gauge can be added to the aircraft with nothing more than a logbook entry. So that is another question I have now. If you have a Robinson with a couple empty instrument spots in the panel, can you add any instrument you want in there with nothing more than a logbook entry? No one from maintenance is there on weekends, so I'll probably still go ask someone from maintenance next week. I also might print out the STC posted above, I'm just trying to be tactful and not come off as cocky and trying to outsmart someone. At least I learned something I consider to be important.
  14. Sarasota County Sheriff's Office currently has a pilot job posted. 1000TT Helicopters and 500 Turbine. It says LE certification is a plus. Sounds like that's a civilian gig. Also, Florida Fish and Wildlife just had a couple pilot job announcements that were open to civilians. You would have to go to an academy though after being hired as those are sworn positions.
  15. Thanks for the responses. I might go ask the maintenance guys at the school here to see if they have the STC or Form 337 for the 430W installation. Also, might look at the airframe logbook closer to see if the installation is noted there. Like I said, last time I flew I looked through every page of the RFM and there was nothing about the GPS other than it being listed under the W&B section. No supplements or anything that mentioned the TSO. I must've been mistaken about having to log the database updates. Can't remember where I was reading that, but it must've been something 135 or company specific.
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