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Mountain Ridge Helicopters Helicopter Flight Training Higher Ground Helicopters Flight Academy Ocean ColoHeliops 702 Helicopters Helicopter Flight Training

Subject: Helicopter Pilot Training?
 
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zCaptainUser is Offline
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JH Veteran
Posts:49

07/16/2011 10:31 AM  
In order to get your FAA licensing do you have to go to college and get a degree in aviation apart from the actual hands on experience in a helicopter at a flight school?
I know that you have to do some ground studies even if college isn't a necessity. So what are these ground studies like? Do you spend more time studying out of text books/in class or in the actual helicopter? What exactly do you study when on the ground? Just all the ins and outs of helicopters or what?

Details details! I wanna know what to expect if I go to flight school. To tell you the truth I'm not a very smart guy. Is there a lot of mathematical arithmetic when studying at flight school?

I'd appreciate it if your responses were detailed, however I welcome any and all posts.

Thanks
Dave99User is Offline
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JH Newbie
Posts:1

07/16/2011 2:59 PM  

1-800-Truckin.  Give them a call

chaosUser is Offline

Posts:0

07/16/2011 4:20 PM  
These are the typical books we use;
1. Rotorcraft Flying Handbook - all about helicopter aerodynamics
2. Jeppesen Private Pilot Manual - navigation, flight physiology, airspace, communications, airport operations, basic aviation weather...(just ignore the airplane stuff).
3. FAR/AIM - FAA regulations
4. Pilots Operating Handbook / Rotorcraft Flight Manual - everything you need to know about a particular helicopter.

There's not much more math, than basic, 3rd grade, division.

You can study on your own (to be tested by a CFI periodically), learn everything one-on-one with a CFI (as I did), or you can take a formal ground school class (offered by some flight schools).

You do not need to go to college for this, but a degree (in another field), is recomended as a back-up career choice.
pdmathesonUser is Offline
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Posts:13

07/16/2011 5:38 PM  
No, you do not need a degree to become a pilot or work as a pilot, although it helps tremendously when it comes time to make flying your career. When your up against 3 or 4 other pilots for one open position and you have a degree in aviation and they don't, you will be the one to get the job (as long as every thing else is equal between the 4 candidates). I am currently a Jr, almost a Sr. in a global aviation program offered online through an accredited college. Once I finish, I will have a bachelors degree in Aviation Administration / Professional Pilot on top of being a commercial helicopter pilot with my CFI/CFII. Flight school consists of a lot of book work and studying on your own. I would say for very one hour of flight training in the helicopter, you will do at least 2 to 3 hours of ground school. You will have much more ground school hours racked up than actual flight time once you graduate with your ratings. Ground school teaches you all of the fundamentals of flight, including thrust, drag, resistance, gravity and so on. As you work on your private pilot license, you will also learn about airspace, operating rules and procedures, and you will learn about different attitudes that a pilot may have that can contribute to an eventual accident and how to recognize theses attitudes and avoid them. Depending on the flight school you will learn the basics of the airframe you are operating, ie: the Robinson R22. You will learn about the controls: cyclic, collective, rudder pedals, and throttle. You will learn about the performance of the aircraft (including emergency procedures which you must memorize and be able to execute at a moments notice) and about weight and balance and how to properly calculate weight and balance to determine how much fuel and payload you can have on the aircraft for a given flight. There is not a whole lot of math involved because you can use an E6-B calculator, which if you folllow the formulas and plug in the numbers correctly, theres really not too much you can screw up. Also during your private pilot training you will learn how to flight plan which will become a very lesson to learn. Flight planning brings everything you learn during your private pilot training to the table and requires that you have knowledge of the airspace, weather, flight restrictions, weight and balance, and performance of the aircraft. Once you recieve your private pilot's license (after a stressful checkride), you will either begin work on your instrument rating or your commercial certificate. Instrument training is very intense as you are trying to take an inherently unstable aircraft and you are trying to fly it at an exact speed and exact altitude all while being completley focused on the intruments as you will have the "hood" on which does not allow you to see outside the aircraft. You will become an awesome pilot as you begin to understand what the instruments are telling you and how to make the minor corrections to stay on a given flight plan. There is some math involved as you will learn what standard rate turns are which essentially allow you to make turns at a certain degree angle and speed and if executed correctly, you will complete a full 360 degree turn in exactly 2 minutes. Instrument class training is very intense: for every 1 hour of flight training in the helicopter, you will do at least 4 to 5 hours of ground training. Once you receive your intrument rating (after another intense check ride), you will move onto commercial training. Commercial training is awesome! At this point you have been able to prove that you can handle a helicopter pretty well. During commercial flight training your ground training will consist of a much more thorough lesson on airspace and the aircraft in which you are training in. You will be required to know how every system on the helicopter works ie: Fuel system, what type of rotor head it has and what that means, everything about the engine including specifications and what type of fluids it needs to run. You will learn about commercial operations under part 91 and part 135 and what you are "allowed" to do with your ratings. You will be required to master emergency procedures and without warning be able to execute an emergency procedure while beginning to "talk-out-loud" through the entire procedure. You will be required to "hit" your landings spot on, so when the instructor says "180 auto to the numbers", you have to be able to SAFELY manuever the helicopter into a 180 degreee autorotation taking into account altitude, wind, and speed to be able to execute a full touchdown or engine recover auto to the numbers on the runway. Commercial training is awesome and you really do become a much more confident and able pilot. After your commercial training you will work on your CFI/CFII. CFI is Certified Flight Instructor, CFII is Certified Flight Instrument Instructor. I am just beginning my training on both so I don't have a ton of info on this portion, but I do know that CFI/CFII training is the most intense ground training you will go through because you are responsible for putting together and building your own lesson's and then teaching them to the instructor. You will need to do this for every flight lesson that is required to be given to a student from a CFI, so they will need to be practically perfect lessons. All and all, if you are training full time, flight training should take you between 10 months to 2 years depending on how dedicated you are and how much effort you put into it. Remember, you will only get out what you put into something, so if you put forward a poor effort and don't "jump both feet in", it will most likely take a long time to finish the program, cost you a lot more money, and in the end you will not be satisfied with your training. That is why this career field demands passion, determination, and will power. If you don't love flying and love wanting to learn everything there is to know about helicopters then you may struggle quite a bit.
chaosUser is Offline

Posts:0

07/16/2011 8:09 PM  
You may want to prepare for slightly more than 3 or 4 other pilots competing for that one slot.

Wow, that's a long one "pd", I think my eyes almost fell out!  How about a break in the wall?
pdmathesonUser is Offline
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JH Member
Posts:13

07/17/2011 2:35 AM  
"Chaos",

Thanks for the comment. Obviously you can see how committed and passionate I am about the Rotor-wing world. I was simply trying to answer the question that was posted with as much "detail" as I thought necessary since that is what was asked for. Also, I'm not too sure how you can prepare for going up against other candidates for a job opening when chances are you will never see the other candidates and most likely will not know their qualifications that set them apart from you. I was simply throwing a number out to present the fact that you do want to do something to set yourself apart from other candidates when applying for a job.
zCaptainUser is Offline
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JH Veteran
Posts:49

07/21/2011 12:28 PM  
Thanks for that post, it was good! I appreciate it :)
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