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Experiences with these FL schools?


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Hi Forum,

 

I am debating taking a job in the Orlando, FL area. I was wanting feed back about these schools.

 

 

 

Orlando Flight Training in Kissimmee, FL.

 

Tropical Helicopters in Leesburg, FL.

 

Orlando HeliTours in Kissimmee, FL.

 

Air Orlando Helicopters in Orlando, FL.

 

 

 

Thanks for your help.

 

Mechanic

 

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Hi Forum,

 

I am debating taking a job in the Orlando, FL area. I was wanting feed back about these schools.

 

 

 

Orlando Flight Training in Kissimmee, FL.

 

Tropical Helicopters in Leesburg, FL.

 

Orlando HeliTours in Kissimmee, FL.

 

Air Orlando Helicopters in Orlando, FL.

 

 

 

Thanks for your help.

 

Mechanic

 

 

 

I don't know what you are going to do with these schools - fly or instruct? But if it is to fly as a student, I attended Orlando Flight Training for a couple of weeks a few yrs ago and I would NOT recommend them. They seem more geared toward fixed wing at the expense of rotary lessons. Quick summary, I had arranged to attend their 3-week intensive course several months in advance. Despite knowing this, they failed to have an instructor ready for me when I arrived, losing 3 precious days. Then, they hired a heavily accented french instructor, who ATC even complained about, who had NO idea of what the schools schedule or flight plan was about. I had gotten ahead of time the books they said to get, only to have this instructor not even know about it. There was only 2 helos there at the time, one of which was destroyed in an accident after I left but I don't know if they replaced it, and they continued to schedule my instructor with walk-ins. Now I know they need to make money, but I was there to attend a 3 week course and that instructor was supposed to be devoting his time to me. So, I had a very hard time accumulating the hrs required for completion in 3 weeks because of this.

 

When the instructor did show up, and when I arrived in the office to start, they asked me why I didn't check in a couple of days before - said I didn't know I had to. Several days later, when I asked about ground school, they said there was ground school every week - said no one told me about it, thanks. I ended up leaving with about 15 hrs after 2 weeks very dissapointed in the experience and school - they seemed to not know what was going on, nor very organized.

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Had an interesting student who finished PPL at OFT and came to me / us to continue. Had to do quite a bit of work with him to make him into a good pilot. The student will tell you that himself...it was a shock to his system when he moved schools that left him feeling that he had only touched the tip of the iceberg during his 3 week intensive course. I don't necessarily agree with OFTs 'intensive' course philosophy. I don't think there is time for consolidation of skills and knowledge.

 

Also it's true that OFT are a well known and respected fixed-wing training establishment, but their helicopter side is almost a side show. (They did have a very nice Trinidadian girl training helicopters there though, but I guess she's gone now!)

 

A former student of mine (and friend) worked at Air Orlando last I heard. He (Steve) is a good pilot...and I'm sure would teach me a load if we got to fly together again. ;)

 

Don't know about the others.

 

Joker

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Hey mechanic,

 

have you thought about driving up I-4 to Tomlinson Aviation, Inc. It's worth the drive man. Those guys took awesome care of me.

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Hey Rotor212,

 

No, I have not finished. My new manager at my current job knows I plan on leaving when I finish my training so he has made taking off from work a pain in the !&*$#@. I haven't been able to fly in about 4 months. And, to top it all off my wife was laid off from her job of 12 years so money is tight. We are going to FL next week to check some things out. Oh, the last time I spoke to Joe S. in MS, he asked about you. The last time I spoke to Atsuko she was liking PHI, accept for the winter time early morning preflights.

 

Regards

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I definitely recommend tropical helicopter in leesburg. Their rates are really good (2250 for a 10 hour block with instruction), they fly 300C models which are a bit faster than the more traditional CBs, and they also have an enstrom 280FX available and a warrior (fixed wing). The guys there are really friendly and helpful, and its a much more laid atmosphere than the in-and-out-the-door type schools. If you want any more info PM me, I just got my instrument rating with them and am currently working toward commercial.

Chris

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