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I'm looking for some assistance in trying to justify flight training to my wife.

I have recently been looking into the Warrant Officer program in the Army, being prior service Army I know a lot about it and would love the lifestyle. Today we learned that my wife's ex-husband will not allow my step-son to leave the state of Illinois with us if I was to be accepted into the Army WOFT program. It's crushing to say the least but I know there are other options out there. I don't think the Guard is an option since I am technically a civilian now and am not willing to enlist with no guarantee of flying.


I am presently working as a Police Officer making decent money and have my fixed-wing PPL license with about 250 hours (150 PIC + 40 instrument). A few years back I took a couple lessons in an R-22 and fell in love. From what I understand I can go directly for the commercial add-on rating, and need to achieve at least 50 hours in a helicopter before I can get this. Since I already have the required hours (less rotory-wing time) I think this is a pretty painless route to my commerical rating ($12k or so?). My goal here is to get my ratings, and fly part-time while finishing out my career as a police officer. I obviously want to get my CFII, but I need to think one step at a time.


Given my current situation, does anyone have any suggestions on how I should go about achieving this goal in the most cost effective way? Everyone talks about the difficulty of getting jobs or free flight hours, but is this just for the guys looking for the full-time career flying? Is getting free hours being a safety pilot, or doing whatever else besides instructing hard to come across? Am I just wasting my time?! I live on the Illinois/Wisconsin border and have been looking at WW Helicopters in East Troy, WI and Midwestern Helicopter in Kenosha, WI. I'm not sure if WW Helicopters is out of business, they don't like to answer their phone. If anyone has experience with these schools let me know. I want to do this in the worst way, but at the same time don't want to break my family financially.


Again any feedback would be great! Thanks in advance

Edited by panzer1999
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Get your Private, or Commercial add-on, in an R22, and just rent to build your hours(unless you think one of the local schools will hire you to teach?).


By the time you have enough hours to change careers, your step-son should be old enough to decide for his own where he wants to live, and you can move on. ;)

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I'm looking for some assistance in trying to justify flight training to my wife.


I am presently working as a Police Officer making decent money


A few years back I took a couple lessons in an R-22 and fell in love.


I live on the Illinois/Wisconsin border


1. There is no justifying flying helicopters. The cost is high the pay is low.


2. Any chance your department has an air unit you can apply for?


3. Yepp, R22's are responsible for AIDS among the best of us. I somehow survived thru the R22's and once I started flying 44's the wife could come along in style. Now she loves it, however my last girlfriend crashed and burned so I'm out looking for a new one. You may look at E Harmony, whereas I spend my time at Barnstormers.com !


4. I was born on the Illinois/Wisconsin border in a lil town called Beloit.


Seriously this is a tough gig. Those with a ton of money, very creative or very social (making a lot of connections) seem to make it ok. Once you get your commercial rotary is it that much more time to get your CFI? At least with that you can get someone else to pay for your time...if you can find that first entry job.


Good luck, fly safe



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To Goldy:


1. I can't justify ANYTHING to my wife. That was miswording on my part in the original post.


2. No Air Unit, we have a task force that flies rarely...but still worth a shot.


3. Barnstormers is the reason why the internet was created In my opinion.


4. Beloit is not so little anymore...basically a suburb or Rockford. I'm just East of there in McHenry County, just south of the great Lake Geneva.

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From what I understand of the G.I. bill, since youre former mil. and if u havent used it yet, you could have most of your training paid for if you attend an accredited institution. Especailly since you have a private rating already, which it doenst pay for, and you could concievably go straight to RC-H commercial. Have you researched that? Some schools are very familiar with the particulars and could give you the rundown with a phone call. If telling your wife it'll be free doesnt convince her, nothing will...I went to bell academy 206b ground and flight school with a guy who figured out that the gov would pay for 97% of it (over 10k), and has been back 3 times to add different airframes.

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Yeah the GI Bill program is fantastic for flight training IF you can get to an approved school. There is no VA Approved schools in the Midwest to my knowledge, and I am not in a position to move out of state to finish my training. Great suggestion though, I recommend any and all that have the GI bill to utilize this benefit while you can.

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