first flight

eriknorth

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 28, 2002
Posts
148
Total Time
almost
Hey guys,
For you guys that I was talking to earlier (or whoever else cares), I took my first flight at the controls today. I'm hooked. What else can I say? Maybe someday I'll be flying with some of you guys. Any advice for a pilot just starting to work on private? What would be the best way to do my flying. I go to UGA, so I can't do it full time. How many hours per weekend should I plan on flying to make shure I get the most out of it? Any other advice?
-eriknorth
 

navigator72

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
913
Total Time
1700+
Congrats

Congrats on the first flight!
Welcome to the wonderful world of aviation
I would try to get the writtens out of the way as soon as possible. I would also try to fly at least 2 lessons a week.
And just remember, HAVE FUN!
 

Beantown

Ex Chicken
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
564
Total Time
5000+
Eriknorth, Congrats on your first real flight. I know the feeling. It is unreal isn't it!!

For advice, study hard and fly as much as you can. It doesn't take much to pass the PVt but if you are going to go the whole way you will need to know it so learn it now, not later. And last but not least, have fun!!
-Beantown (Go PATS!!!!!)
 

hobbsmeter

V-Speed Master
Joined
Dec 10, 2001
Posts
181
Total Time
11K+
Congratulations

Congratulations Eriknorth,

Hopefully that 1st lesson will be the start of a promising career for you.
My advice is to schedule at least 2 lessons a week, and if you can't fly because of weather or maintenance etc. then take the time you have with your instructor and do groundwork, ask LOTS of questions, no matter how stupid you think the question is, ask anyway. Also don't be satisfied with performing at a minimum skill level, be it maneuvers or cross country or whatever, challenge yourself and in the end it will make you a more competent pilot.
Lastly, HAVE FUN! If/when you find find yourself getting frustrated about something stop and take a breather, if it's groundwork go out and get some fresh air or if you're in the air stop whatever you were doing, sit back and enjoy the awesome view you're lucky enough to have.
Hope that helps some.
 

ShawnC

Skirts Will Rise
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Posts
1,481
Total Time
-5Z
Well fly at least one or two two hour sessions a week. Now that you have taken your first flight its time to get your medical before your next flight. If you want to become an airline pilot you want to make sure that you can get a first class medical.

Other than that study hard, good luck and god speed.

Oh yeah take a camera with you on everyflight, you would be surpirsed what you will get on film.

:)
 

aero99

just a member, not senior
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
394
Total Time
10PM
Congrats erik,

The more you fly, the easier the training will come. When I was doing my pvt, I scheduled 3-4 times a week. Being in Texas in the summer I usually got to fly 1-2 times a week because of weather. There was never a week that maint., weather, or scheduling problems didn't pop up and allow me to not fly 4 times a week. My point, if you schedule for 2 times a week, plan on actually getting up once a week.

GO GET that MEDICAL!

Take ground school. If your doing a 141 school it is required, but I would recommend it anyway. Having someone else talk about what you have read will make some things easier to understand.

Find an instructor that you can communicate with easily and that you are comfortable with. I changed instructors 3 times when I started until I found the person I thought I would learn the most from based on how we communicated. This could mean the differnece in getting your pvt lic in 50 hours or 100 hours.

Good luck
 

Vavso

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 3, 2001
Posts
202
Total Time
1900
Congratulations!!

My advice is to fly at least 2 x's a week but more importantly be careful where and with whom you spend your $. People have learned the hard way there are SOME places that want to take your cash. Not to turn you off or make you paranoid but those places are out there Good luck!!!
 

bobbysamd

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
5,710
Total Time
4565
First Flight

I remember my first flight. It was on March 2, 1982, nearly twenty years ago! I was so excited and keyed up I couldn't sleep that night! I spent half the night reading the Flight Training Handbook.

Per our last thread, go get your medical ASAP. Get a First Class medical. You want to be sure you can get a First even if you're only thinking about a flying career because you won't go far without it. You will need a combination First Class Medical and Student Pilot Certificate. The doctor will know what certificate to issue.

Try to fly as often as possible, but no less that twice a week. School comes first. Try to get the written out of the way as soon as possible. I agree with "Aero99" 100%. You'll learn better by going to class. Is there an aviation program offered in your school? Maybe you can take Private Pilot ground school as an elective.

Finally, to get the most out of your flight training, you must approach it the same way as you would approach a course in college. Be as thoroughly prepared as possible for each lesson. Know the procedures cold. Try to take notes of your instructor's preflight briefings and postflight discussions. Ask questions, and don't worry if they seem to be stupid questions.

Lots of luck with your training. Let us know when you solo.
 
Last edited:

eriknorth

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 28, 2002
Posts
148
Total Time
almost
Thanks guys,
It's great to know that I have a community of people to talk to about this. Unfortunately, there are no courses offered at UGA involving flight (I'm actually a saxophone major-imagine that). But the good news is that UGA just started a flying club last week. It is for pilots who have ratings and for those working on them. It kinda brings together all of the pilots who are spread out among campus. We're going to do stuff like take flights to the beach for a weekend, have guests who work as pilots, or anything else us crazy college folk feel like doing;) . Thanks you for the advice. That seems reasonable to fly 2-3 lessons a week. I plan on getting my medical out of the way, and all of my free time goes to studying flight books. Thanks again!
Safe Flying!
-eriknorth
 

Pilotadjuster

I voted for Pedro
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
340
Total Time
400
Have Fun!

One other thing my first instructor impressed upon me; the cockpit is a lousy, noisy, expensive place to learn! Studying is free, the money only starts pouring out when you actually get in the aircraft! Study hard and learn all you can before a lesson, so you are reviewing the "head work" and learning the physical flight work. Much easier on you and the instructor that way.

To echo the others here--above all, have fun with it! its expensive, but worth every $.01! (and that is from someone who has yet to make $.01 flying yet!)

Fly Safe

PA
 

eriknorth

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 28, 2002
Posts
148
Total Time
almost
By the way,
Do any of you fly near the Atlanta/Athens area, say Ben Epps or PDK or Gwinnett Airport? If you do, let me know and I'll try to get a private message over to you if you''re logged on.
-eriknorth
 

Float Pilot

Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2002
Posts
15
Total Time
350
Congratulations! You're obviously hooked & going to love flying. Don't worry about not having a ground school to go. Everybody has their own way of learning - some like the classroom format, some like videos & some like to just grab the books. Whatever works for you; personally I like to just read about it, ask questions & chat with all of the pilots I know.

There are lots of good books to learn the theory. Jeppesen integrates the FAA knowledge test (i.e. written) questions into their textbook. Also get one of the test books that has all of the FAA questions. The books do a good job of trying to explain them. To prepare for the oral, I'd recommend the ASA books that are written for this. Get the PTS and know what you'll have to fly on the check ride, including the tolerances.

There are lots of good suggestions in all of these posts. I'd like to echo the comments about being prepared for a lesson as the cockpit is a lousy classroom. After a lesson, ask the instructor what you'll do next time so you can be prepared. And take notes right after a lesson so you can refer to them later.

Lots of luck & enjoy.
 

brew3departure

Da Bears...Bears...Bears
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
145
Total Time
4000
Congratulations!

I'll throw my .02 in here as well,

Erik - congrats! I'd be willing to wager that everyone on here probably will never forget his/her first flight at the controls.

Not to overwhelm you with advice, but of everything stated in previous threads, make SURE you get along with your instructor! I had to switch instructors several times. Most were good, even great, but there were a few bad apples along the way. Don't be afraid to step up to the plate and respectfully ask to try flying with someone else if things aren't working out.

I like the Jeppesen textbooks - expensive, yes, but you might be able to find them in a library if you don't have the $ to burn right away, otherwise used is a good way to go also.

Congratulations again, and keep us updated on your progess. It's nice to read threads like this one when so many people are out of work otherwise!

-brew3
 
Last edited:

LR25

Its just a vintage VW
Joined
Nov 25, 2001
Posts
1,641
Total Time
7000
Congrats!

I remember my first flight and my solo! What a time, I was 15 years old and soloed on my 16th birthday.

There is a great deal to learn now for you, the hardest part of all, is to get the written out of the way.

The time to start studying is now, don't fall into the trap of being ready for your checkride but still struggling with the book work.

Ask questions, and by all means hang around the airport with all the airport bums and get to know people, usaually the local airport is a real good place to hangout.

It has been sometime now since all my initial training days and there may be better tools out there now but, I used to use the King video series to prep for my instrument written and checkride. Check into them, they were really informative and answered alot of questions. They are available for most ratings I think.

Also, I used to live in Atlanta and did a ton of flying around there, If I can help you out let me know.

Happy flying,
LR25
 

surfnole

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Posts
215
Total Time
350
One thing you might want to do, and there will probably be some disagreement on this, is buy Microsoft Flight Sim 2002....If you have a decent computer and video card.

The flight sim is not nearly as good for your private lesson as it is for instruments, but you could learn the layout of the panel and what the instruments mean, you can practice your preflight checks, and you can learn VOR navigation, reading a DME, setting radios, and even some ATC lingo.

Plus, the graphics are great.
 

SF3CAP

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 21, 2001
Posts
78
Total Time
5500
Way to go, Erik!

It's nice to hear some good news for once....
 

eriknorth

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 28, 2002
Posts
148
Total Time
almost
Thanks guys,
I have been reading a whole lot, and I realistically won't be able to start my formal training until this summer when I'm out of school and can work all the time. I do indeed own FS 2002, and I love it. It helped me a lot on my forst flight, as I have played it for hours upon hours so I was familiar with the controls and some of the basics and lingo. Hey LR25, I'm trying to decide between PDK and Gwinnett Airports. Any advice? Thanks again, yall, and I'll keep you posted.
eriknorth
 

surfnole

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Posts
215
Total Time
350
I did my PPL at PDK. At the time I was working in downtown Atlanta and it was somewhat on the way home from work. I could also take extended lunch and get some practice in.

At the time, they told me PDK was the second busiest general aviation airport in the US. Its very intimidating at first.

I remember going out for a lesson at 5:30 pm and sitting behind five or six business jets and a few single engine props waiting for clearance. They had parallel runways operating and often they were on separate frequencies. It was overwhelming initially.

The downside to PDK is

1) You will spend a lot of money sitting in an airplane waiting for take off clearance.

2) Its roughly a 10 minute flight to the practice area or Gwinnett where we did all our touch and goes (I am sure Gwinnett has grown by now...back in early 90s, it was uncontrolled). You will spend more money flying to and from the practice area.

3) You will almost always need to fly somewhere else to practice touch and goes. Sunday mornings I could stay in the pattern at PDK.

4) The radio communications will take a while to learn.

The upside to PDK is

1) Once you have your private from PDK, you will not be intimidated when you need to talk to a controller. You will be confident enough to fly into almost any GA airport in the country.

I remember one time as a student pilot entering the pattern. The controller told me to expedite my landing because he had a jet on final. I was so worried about expediting the landing that I forgot to slow down and put down the flaps. Then I wondered why I was doing 90 knots over the approach end of the runway.

I floated about halfway down the runway at 10 feet and finally landed. I should have gone around, but I just had it in my mind that I had to land.
 

Flyer7SA

Active member
Joined
Nov 27, 2001
Posts
39
Total Time
1200+
LZU or PDK???

PDK is a very busy airport and you will absolutely be thrown into:

1) ATC communication procedures
2) Parallel runways / intricate taxiways
3) Holding short of the runway and waiting most of the time...

Now, take Gwinett (LZU). They have a tower, so you will get experience with class D airspace. Also, they are really close to their practice areas, so you won't spend much money getting to / from or even waiting.

Tell you what, though... Above and beyond choosing an airport, you really want to pay attention to what flight school you choose. Even more important than that is the flight instructor you go with.

~Flyer7SA
 

eriknorth

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 28, 2002
Posts
148
Total Time
almost
Thanks for the advice. I think that I'm going to go with Gwinett or even Athens, depending on things. I went to the UGA flight club meeting last night, which was only the second one ever. We are planning at least one big trip where we take our "armada" of planes to the beach or something for a few days. We're trying to raise money for this. On thing we are doing is holding a raffle in the campus student center for a free discovery flight. That way, it is recruiting and fund raising. We are trying to think of ideas for fund raising, so if any of you have any ideas or have even done this type of thing before, please let me know. I know from my high school band days that car washes are a big fund raiser. Hmmm....what if we stood on the runway at Hartsfield Airport with a sign that reads, "free jet wash, donations accepted".....:D
 
Top