Posted: Fri Apr 09, 2010 3:37 pm Post subject: Re-light my fire..
Just thougt I'd say hello...
I considered a career as a heli pilot about 20 years ago....the 'dream' was quickly snuffed out when I spoke with an instructor a Cardiff Wales airport who told me the costs involved and added 'the best/cheapest way to get my license was to Join the army'...An accurate statement but not a practical solution for me.
The closest I got was flying a model helicopter...great fun and rewarding, but expensive when you crash.
So here I am 20 years later and it seems nothing has changed. Something lit the fire the other day so I decided to find out more...after visiting several school websites and finding more questions than answers I came across Helitorque
So far I've only looked at the wannabes section but this has been very informatiive. After reading a few posts and looking at the helpful spreadsheet of costs..thank you veeany... it would seem that I should go no further than flying as a hobby. I can't afford/dont want to invest the best part of £100K if I'm not going to get much of a financial return.
One other thing the instructor suggested in order to keep down the costs, was to gain my fixed wing license and convert to helicopters. At the risk of offending, is this a practical way to go about things?...I can't quite see that it is...surely you want as much flight time in helicopters as you can get. On the other hand are there greater job opportunities with fixed wing?
I may pop down to Heli-air Wales in Swansea over the weekend for a chat.
By the way...Why is a turbine helicopter treated differently to an non turbine? Is it because they are larger aircraft? As far as i can see it's just a different power source... the control would not differ - please excuse my ignorance
To answer the question about fixed wing licences - I believe there is some merit in it, but it would only be slight. For the PPL(H), it reduces the requirement by 5 hours (from 45 to 40 hours). However, it would be optimistic to expect to complete the PPL course in the minimum hours from scratch. So, as a train of thought, getting time in the air allows you to experience/learn flying generally; that means you're not concentrating on the "common" elements (like radio, air-law, etc.).
However, you'd still have to get the PPL(A) to have any advantage on the reduced PPL(H) hours - what's the cost of a PPL(A) £10k? That's about 35-40 R22 hours. I know which I'd go for.
As for turbine vs piston - quite a difference - start a turbine engine incorrectly and you'll need a new one! But I suspect you're thinking more about why one needs to be rated on one machine over another? Most (if not all) helicopter types will require a type rating. You need a difference rating to go from R22 to R44, for example, despite them being virtually identical in all but size! _________________ J.
But I suspect you're thinking more about why one needs to be rated on one machine over another? Most (if not all) helicopter types will require a type rating. You need a difference rating to go from R22 to R44, for example, despite them being virtually identical in all but size!
Unless of course you get a nice shiny FAA licence(license)!
W. _________________ In memory of Skippy the Dog - "www.pilotsnpaws.org" - RIP Scruffy.x
Joined: Jul 20, 2004 Posts: 3702 Location: Birmingham, UK
Posted: Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:15 pm Post subject:
The reduction you get for converting from a fixed wing PPL is only a maximum of 6 hours, but if you've only just qualified on fixed wing it's even less generous as you can only claim 10% of your pilot in command time - i.e. if you passed your PPL(A) with 10 hours solo you only get credited one hour! You'd have to hour build to 60 hours PIC before you got the maximum reduction. Might as well go straight to helicopters, and besides, it's highly unlikely you will get through in 39 hours anyway - the national average is somewhere between 60 and 80 hours according to various CAA examiners.
Good luck on your quest and hope you get airborne soon!
Joined: Sep 16, 2006 Posts: 736 Location: North England
Posted: Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:06 pm Post subject:
on the subject of re-lighting your fire. From reading your post I would recomend that you take a trial lesson and then worry about the investment. I have not got a hope in hell of funding a commercial pilots licence , but that does not stop me trying. You never know hell may freeze over . Treat yourself to a half hour trial and by the time you get home you will have a pretty good idea if its for you and please come back and tell us how you got on. _________________ R22 2.6 h/r wanting more, a hell of a lot more
Joined: Aug 23, 2005 Posts: 266 Location: On a course.... golf course
Posted: Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:19 am Post subject:
Turbine machines are generally bigger and more complex, with hydraulics, fuel boost pumps, and electrical goodies. Of course there are exceptions, the R44 with hydraulics and the H500 without.
But there is a world of difference between an R44 and an EC120 or a Koala, and then of course you move into twins. The extra training for a separate rating or endorsement is driven by safety and by the economics for the owner, who doesn't want some yobbo to try to drive his expensive toy.
Thanks all, for the warm welcome and the advice, much appreciated.
There's quite a bit to take in.
I will take a trip down to Swansea and see whats on offer, and maybe (if I get to control the aircraft) take them up on the trial lesson...the last thing I want is a passenger ride over the Gower, pretty as it is.
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