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training strategy advice wanted- cart before the horse?


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looking at different threads on getting advanced ratings, instrument, commercial, cfi and cfii, I am curious how to plan for maximum effect. I have heard some say that an instrument rating and cfii checkride should be done together, while I've been under the impression even studying for the cfii is done after the commercial and cfi ratings. yet others say to bang out the instrument rating, which makes you steadier on the controls for passing the commercial checkride. can you study for the instrument and cfii written at the same time without having the cfi and comm. ticket?

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  • Take your Instrument written and CFII written at the same time...same test, and no endorsement needed for the CFII. Just remember that you have 2 years to finish you CFII or you sit for the knowledge test again. Might as well look at the requirements for the instrument ground instructor as well--I don't believe there's an endorsement required for the test (but there are requirements beyond the written test to actually exercise IGI privileges).
  • You will most likely need the instrument rating to meet your commercial TT, PIC, and XC requirements. I haven't looked at the commercial requirements lately, but that is one reason many schools have you do the instrument before commercial.
  • The instrument rating will make you a better pilot. And you will have a new-found appreciation for VFR after 40 hours of your CFII telling you all the cool sights you missed while you were under the hood.
  • You'll have to brush up on your instrument skills and knowledge again after your CFI in preparation for the check ride, but the knowledge test will at least be out of the way.

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1000% agree with Kodoz. Private > IR > Comm > CFI > CFII will get you the most for the least on every level.

 

Take the CFII written the same day as the IR written (doesn't matter what order you take any of them, btw...if you really wanted to you could take them all before you ever logged so much as a demo flight as long as you had the proper endorsements) and when you walk out of your CFI checkride it'll take just a handful of hours to be ready for a CFII ride (and you'll be surprised at how much easier it all seems then, lol). I still have former students thank me for badgering them into taking the two tests at once and others who now woefully regret not doing so...some still don't have their CFII just because of that silly written! Bad move in a tough job market. The IR time will definitely make you a more precise VFR pilot and it'll save you $$ by building your PIC time towards your commercial requirements without just burning holes in the sky. :)

 

I know a lot of students find IFR a drag but I always looked at what an incredible, powerfully organized system it is and it fascinated me...still does. I go home to teach IFR whenever I get a request, I completely geek out on it :P

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  • 2 months later...

i'm about 25 hrs in on my (simulated) instrument flying. another instrument student and i just completed a flight where i flew the first leg under foggles, and he flew the second leg befoggled;) how should we log our hours pic? i flew 2.2 total (2.0 w/ foggles) and he flew the rest. we flew as each other's safety pilot. how do others on VR log pic, and who accepts responsibility/ liability for the aircraft at which point in flight? depending on liability, how is billing done to reflect who is ultimately responsible for each leg of flight? this is hotly debated at my school, and i think i have a system we are all comfortable with, just wanting to hear others experience with this.

Edited by Spirit of '69
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I believe when you act as safety pilot you can both log PIC time. The instrument pilot because he is the primary one manipulating the controls, and the safety pilot because regulations require him to be there (61.51.e.iii: you can log PIC "When the pilot, except for a holder of a sport or recreational pilot certificate, acts as pilot in command of an aircrat for which more than one pilot is required under the type certification of the aircraft or the regulations under which the flight in conducted;:)

 

As for liability I'd work that out between the two of you as part of your pre-flight briefing - who has the controls if an emergency comes up.

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i'm about 25 hrs in on my (simulated) instrument flying. another instrument student and i just completed a flight where i flew the first leg under foggles, and he flew the second leg befoggled;) how should we log our hours pic? i flew 2.2 total (2.0 w/ foggles) and he flew the rest. we flew as each other's safety pilot. how do others on VR log pic, and who accepts responsibility/ liability for the aircraft at which point in flight? depending on liability, how is billing done to reflect who is ultimately responsible for each leg of flight? this is hotly debated at my school, and i think i have a system we are all comfortable with, just wanting to hear others experience with this.

 

Without an instructor on board there to give viable and precise feedback, isn't it difficult to know what you may have been doing wrong or what you should have been doing right? I understand you had another instrument student as your safety pilot, but considering neither of you had an instrument rating, and you had roughly 25 hours simulated time at the most, I would think there would be a lack of critique and knowledge available to you during the flight. I just don't think you'd be getting as much information out of training in that manner as you would if you were flying with an instructor all the time. Just my two cents. Sorry to drive off topic momentarily.

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Both of you are able to log PIC, since you are both rated pilots with privileges in the aircraft and both are required crew. One of you (under the hood) is sole manipulator, while the other is responsible (ie, liable) for the safety of the flight. AOPA has covered this topic pretty well, and I believe there is also an FAA legal interpretation on how to log PIC time in this case.

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thanks kodoz, i'll check aopa. that is how it was explained to me as well.

RagMan, I actually learned a lot from the right seat, my first time. Instrument flying doesn't come naturally to me, and seeing different students' interpretations and discussing "on the fly" is actually mutually beneficial. not for every flight, but it also helps understand in what ways we need to improve, or tips to help manage the cockpit better. splitting the flight was also good because it allowed our flight to last twice as long, allowing us to fly to destinations we wouldn't otherwise.

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i'm about 25 hrs in on my (simulated) instrument flying. another instrument student and i just completed a flight where i flew the first leg under foggles, and he flew the second leg befoggled;) how should we log our hours pic? i flew 2.2 total (2.0 w/ foggles) and he flew the rest. we flew as each other's safety pilot. how do others on VR log pic, and who accepts responsibility/ liability for the aircraft at which point in flight? depending on liability, how is billing done to reflect who is ultimately responsible for each leg of flight? this is hotly debated at my school, and i think i have a system we are all comfortable with, just wanting to hear others experience with this.

 

The only sticking point is that you or your safety pilot can only log the PIC that you are under foggles. Once you take them off, you no longer need a safety pilot so you can not both log the PIC time. At that point it is the sole manipulator of the controls that logs it.

 

Beyond that, if (s)he is logging the PIC time while acting as safety pilot, (s)he has the final authority and responsibility. It comes with the "acting as PIC" deal. Paying for it is entirely up to you. Billing and responsibility have nothing to do with each other.

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A gentle reminder while you're flying instruments with your fellow student. In order to be legal to fly on victor airways the safety pilot must be current and instrument rated. I can't site the FAR/AIM, my copy is 190 miles away. Good luck with your training.

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A gentle reminder while you're flying instruments with your fellow student. In order to be legal to fly on victor airways the safety pilot must be current and instrument rated. I can't site the FAR/AIM, my copy is 190 miles away. Good luck with your training.

 

A gentle response:

 

This statement is not accurate. You can fly VFR on the airways, but at VFR altitudes. Also, the FAR/AIM is no further than your keyboard.

 

If you are filing IFR, then yes, the PIC and aircraft must be current. But victor airways are not protected from VFR traffic.

Edited by C of G
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